Weekend’s F1 to get engine clampdown- 22 Jun 2011 00:00:00
A massive clampdown on engine mapping system changes, affecting all Formula One teams, will start at this weekend’s European Grand Prix in Valencia, Spain.
F1 race director Charlie Whiting wrote to the teams to say that, with immediate effect, they could no longer change settings between Saturday qualifying and race day.
Until this point, teams could use car-stressing mapping to gain a good grid position then change it to settings more in favour of race-long performance.
Further changes will be enforced at July's British GP at Silverstone to prevent teams gaining aerodynamic performance by keeping exhaust gases flowing constantly through the rear diffuser, even when drivers are not on the throttle.
This weekend’s move could hit defending champion Sebastian Vettel and his team Red Bull, who has qualified on pole for all seven races so far this season.
However Renault’s technical director believes all teams will be affected: ‘The FIA's note will cause all teams (whether or not they use a blown floor) to change their operation’.
‘The headline changes for the Silverstone GP are: when the driver lifts his foot fully off the accelerator the electronic control unit maps must be set up so that the engine... closes the throttle. Previously it was possible to configure the engine maps to leave the throttle open and reduce the engine power by other means’.
‘Finally, with immediate effect, it will no longer be possible to reprogram the ECU configuration between qualifying and the race in the expectation that this will discourage extreme ECU setups for qualifying’.