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Don't expect an instant reset warns Tombazis

NEWS STORY
15/07/2021

Amidst the fanfare surrounding the biggest overhaul of the rules in living memory, Nikolas Tombazis warns against expecting instant results.

Much like the British government's so-called 'Freedom Day' next Monday, when citizens expected to finally break free of the various restrictions imposed as a result of Covid, the FIA's head of single-seater matters, Nikolas Tombazis has admitted that next year's massive aero rules overhaul may not result in an instant improvement to the racing.

"We expect to see closer racing, but maybe not from the very first race," he said at today's unveiling of the look of 2022, "because maybe somebody will get the new rules right and somebody wrong.

"But very soon we expect to see a closer level of competitiveness between the cars," he added, "and cars being able to follow each other more closely.

"It won't happen overnight," he warned. "We will obviously study what solutions the teams produce, and we will keep working at it, to improve. But we believe over time the racing will improve sizeably."

In what some may well see as yet another caveat, he warned that the rules overhaul may not improve overtaking, merely allow cars to follow more closely.

"It's not so much actual overtaking, but how close they race," he said. "So being able to follow each other, fight each other throughout the race. So that's what we've been trying to do, mainly acting on the aerodynamics."

"This is the start of a new journey," added Ross Brawn, "a new philosophy, a new culture, where the raceability of these cars is going to be vital to the future of F1.

"Why do we do that?" he continued. "We do that because we want to entertain the fans, we want to engage the fans and we want new fans to come into the sport.

"This is a unique new chapter in our sport. And these regulations have evolved to make F1 the absolute greatest racing spectacle, and to push our sport to the very forefront of global culture and entertainment.

"It feels like a very long time ago the FIA officially unveiled the regulations for the future of the sport, but after the one-year delay due to the pandemic it's only 170 days to go until the start of 2022 when we will see the next generation of cars take to the track.

"There is huge excitement ahead of this new era, and while 2021 has been a great battle we still have cars struggling to follow each other during the race. The regulations for 2022 will address this problem and create an opportunity for closer battles and more wheel-to-wheel racing.

"The combined effect of the new aerodynamic regulations and financial rules, in the form of the cost cap, will create the conditions for a more balanced championship and for the gaps across the grid to close."

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1. Posted by flyinglap, 16/07/2021 13:20

"I am frankly amazed that F1 have invested time and money in order to study and build this new car concept, which will be with us for several seasons, yet it is presented with the caveat that it "may not result in an instant improvement to the racing". With all the tools they have at their disposal, and starting from scratch, I would expect nothing less than perfection."

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2. Posted by kenji, 16/07/2021 12:01

"Motor racing came about as competitors set out to prove that one make was faster than the other and that was an 'entertaining' comparison... for the entrants...then came the people to watch them battle it out. That's when motorsport became a legitimate form of entertainment as people were prepared to pay to watch these contests. What you are in effect saying though is that the 'competition' is being sullied in an attempt to appeal to a wider audience that differs greatly from the original. I spent a great deal of my life as CEO of an entertainment based corporation, marketing and selling/promoting filmed entertainment produced by two of Hollywoods major film studios, who were my employers. The driving force in my mind was that we were selling 'experiences' that varied greatly across all genres. That's exactly the same concept for F1. People need to have an enjoyable experience when paying large sums of money for tickets to the races. Variability is a key to success and that's what's been lacking hence the attempt to increase the exposure in the hope that it leads to better competition and more enjoyable experiences rather than predictable results and DRS trains. We'll soon see the result...."

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3. Posted by Egalitarian, 16/07/2021 7:20

"@elsiebc - I was about to write pretty much the same thing. Nice work.
Racing didn't set out to entertain. Now these American idiots (thanks Green Day) start with the notion of entertainment and work from there. That's how you end up with nonsense like WWE (what? you're telling me WWE isn't real?"

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4. Posted by elsiebc, 16/07/2021 5:35

""We do that because we want to entertain the fans, we want to engage the fans and we want new fans to come into the sport." Racing didn't start as entertainment. It didn't exist for the fans. It was about man competing. Going as fast as he can in a given machine. And when that machine didn't allow him to go as fast as he wanted, he made changes to the machine. The original fans know that. We enjoy watching men/women challenge themselves. Commit extreme acts of bravery. Defy death. Be creative. Think and react faster than most can comprehend. We are voyeurs. We live through them. And they will do what they do whether anybody is watching or not. We just wish we could do it.

And when you water it all down it loses that appeal. And they will have to continually chase new fans. NASCAR grew exponentially by being entertaining. Then in short order it plummeted. Those new fans were the ones that would watch a whole race in 15 minutes by fast forwarding to the next crash. They weren't there to witness the connection of man and machine. They were there only for the vaudeville show. "

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