December 7th (F1plus Team).- The FIA made a number of changes in the Sporting and Technical Regulations that govern Formula 1 in the final meeting of the World Motor Sport Council (WMSC) this year in New Delhi on Wednesday.
The most notable change in the Technical Regulations was the rule regarding the blown diffuser, the effect of which will be minimised next year.
In the Sporting Regulations, in-season testing was back and a maximum race time was applied to avoid similar scenarios as seen at the Canadian Grand Prix this year.
Furthermore, drivers will not be allowed to cut the track at any given time, considering the incident Sebastian Vettel was involved in during his slow lap during qualifying for the Japanese Grand Prix. The Red Bull driver had taken an escape road at Suzuka after the German was told by his engineer to complete the lap quickly as time was running out to complete his final run in Q3.
Changes to the 2012 Technical Regulations:
- All engine standard ECU set up and control parameters, which were formerly contained only within a Technical Directive, are now contained within the relevant parts of the Technical Regulations.
- The exhaust tailpipes are now strictly regulated in order to ensure that the aerodynamic effect exhaust gases have on the car is kept to an absolute minimum.
- Better marking of in-car emergency switches operated by marshals are now stipulated.
- The side impact structures will now have to be subjected to a further (upward) push-off test.
Changes to the 2012 Sporting Regulations:
- Cars may no longer take part in pre-season testing without having passed all crash tests.
- There will now be a maximum race time of four hours to ensure that a lengthy suspension of a race does not result in a race that could run up to eight hours if left unregulated.
- Before the safety car returns to the pits all lapped cars will be allowed to unlap themselves and then join the back of the pack, ensuring a clean re-start without slower cars impeding those racing for the leading positions.
- Cars which were in the pit lane when a race is suspended will now be allowed to re-join the cars on the grid in the position they were in when the race was suspended.
- Drivers may no longer leave the track without a justifiable reason, i.e. cutting a chicane on reconnaissance laps or ‘in’ laps to save time and fuel.
- Drivers may no longer move back onto the racing line having moved off it to defend a position.
- One three-day test will be carried out during the season, formerly there were none.
- All stewards’ decisions which are not subject to appeal are now in one place instead of being in various places within the regulations.
- All tyres allocated to a driver may now be used on the first day of practice; formerly only three sets were permitted.