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Horner blasts 2019 regulation changes

NEWS STORY
12/05/2018

Despite the objection of a number of teams - including Red Bull, naturally - the FIA has rubber-stamped the introduction of new rules for next season aimed at improving overtaking.

Ironically, the change, which will drive up costs just two years before the sport is due to undergo a seismic change in terms of its regulations (and much more), comes in the wake of a couple of races which have featured numerous great manoeuvres. Furthermore, the new aero regulations will slow the cars by around 1.5s a lap, just two years after regulations were introduced to increase lap speeds.

Mr Horner isn't happy.

"Sometimes this sport has the ability to shoot itself in the foot,'' he told Sky Sports. "The work that has been done for 2021 is all good stuff, the problem is a snapshot of that has been taken and hasn't been fully analysed and there are no proven conclusions from it.

"It has then been rushed into a set of regulations that completely conflict with existing regulations so they are now scrapping around trying to sort that out this weekend.

"It completely changes the philosophy of the car because the front wing will be wider and different," he continued. "The point that the air meets the air is the front wing and that then changes everything behind it; the suspension, the bodywork, absolutely every single component.

"We talk about costs and being responsible but what has just been introduced is a completely new concept which will cost millions and millions of pounds.''

With overtaking in 2017 50% down on 2016, when there were only 5 successful passes in Melbourne, the sport's bosses hit the panic button and began talking changes. Ironically, the three races that followed all produced good racing with plenty of passes. Horner therefore believes that it is the tracks, rather than the rules, that should be under scrutiny, that and the tyre compounds.

"It was rushed after Melbourne because there was not a lot of overtaking," he said, "when has there ever been a lot of overtaking in Melbourne? And then we've had three great races since then.

"Shouldn't we be looking at the tracks and the tyre compounds and how they influence races rather than burdening the teams with what will be hundreds of millions in costs.

"If you look at the nature of the circuits, long straights with big stops and hairpins like China, Baku and Bahrain they were all good races," he continued. "Those types of circuits always produce good races.

"This will probably be a boring race on Sunday because this track even with the slowest corner into the hairpin is still pretty quick and you've got a fast corner going into it.''

Check out our Saturday gallery from Barcelona, here.

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1. Posted by Spindoctor, 15/05/2018 10:54

"In general I find that Horner tends to talk a lot of rubbish.
I don't suppose that's because he doesn't understand the issues, but it's a consequence of his arguing to benefit RBR . His comment is a classic example, with the proviso that in fact he is partially correct for a change.

I slightly agree that many of the tracks are poorly designed especially for the current generation of cars which rely so much upon their aerodynamics. I agree 100% with his suggestion that the tyres are also to blame.
With the current cars so utterly dependent upon aerodynamics, any proposed rule change which will affect those aerodynamics is going to be extremely expensive. Changing the tyre specifications so that they are more forgiving and easier to heat up should prove a lot cheaper than fiddling around with the aerodynamics, nor indeed than re-designing all the tracks!

Of course if we want to reintroduce a bit more racing, then the car's current reliance upon aerodynamics must also be addressed, and of course Mr Horner, whose team has the services of Adrian Newey is loathe to do anything which will diminish their advantage in that area."

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2. Posted by Pete, 12/05/2018 16:56

"I don't understand why they appear to be focusing 100% on the cars with regards to the lack of overtaking when so many of the race tracks are the real problem. Best example being the Monaco procession."

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3. Posted by mzso, 12/05/2018 16:10

"And the whining and lying begins. Of course aero limitations will affect Red Bull more than most...
God forbid any team let go of anything for the gain of F1, and if they're forced too, of course they start whining."

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4. Posted by Mad Matt, 12/05/2018 10:14

"Sorry Christian but this all sounds like a lot of bluster to me. Red Bull tend to believe that they've got an aero advantage so anything which simplifies aero regulations is seen as a threat to that advantage.

As for driving up costs.... not from what I've seen. There's so much work done on each year's car that I doubt it'll be a massive difference but if it really does allow the cars to run closer together then it might just save the sport......"

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