Formula 1 has approved aerodynamic rule changes for 2019 aimed at promoting closer racing by making it easier for cars to overtake, the sport’s governing body said on Tuesday.
The measures include a simplified front wing with a larger span, front brake ducts without winglets and a wider and deeper rear wing.
The International Automobile Federation (FIA) said its Formula One commission, Strategy Group and World Motor Sport Council (WMSC) had approved the changes.
The changes should reduce turbulence for cars that are following each other, and come after criticism of the lack of overtaking in some races.
The FIA said the vote, on the last day before a unanimous agreement is required for any 2019 regulation changes, following research carried out by a majority of the teams and backed by commercial rights holders Liberty Media.
“These studies indicated the strong likelihood of a positive impact on racing and overtaking within F1 and as such have now been ratified for implementation in 2019,” the statement added.
“The approved changes are separate to the ongoing work being undertaken in regard to defining Formula One’s regulations for 2021 and beyond.”
The word from inside the paddock suggests several teams, including Ferrari and Red Bull, had been opposed to the proposals but were outvoted.
Formula 1’s current agreements with teams expire at the end of 2020 and all parties are discussing what kind of engine and rules should be introduced after that.
Liberty want to level the playing field, reduce the costs and introduce a more equal distribution of the revenues.
Only three of the 10 teams — Mercedes, Ferrari and Red Bull — have won races in the V6 turbo hybrid era that started in 2014 and Mercedes have so far won every championship.
The FIA said it was continuing to evaluate a range of other measures to encourage closer racing.
Following a presentation made to the F1 teams at the Bahrain Grand Prix regarding proposals aimed at promoting closer racing and more overtaking in the Formula 1 World Championship, the Strategy Group, the F1 Commission and the World Motor Sport Council today approved a number of regulation changes for the 2019 season.
The changes, approved by e-vote, are as follows:
Simplified front wing, with a larger span, and low outwash potential
Simplified front brake duct with no winglets
Wider and deeper rear wing
Today’s vote follows an intense period of research into the FIA’s initial proposals, which were made with the support of the F1 Commercial Rights Holder, conducted by a majority of the F1 teams.
These studies indicated the strong likelihood of a positive impact on racing and overtaking within F1 and as such have now been ratified for implementation in 2019.
The approved changes are separate to the ongoing work being undertaken in regard to defining Formula 1’s regulations for 2021 and beyond.
In addition to the aerodynamic changes ratified today, the FIA is continuing to evaluate a range of other measures aimed at encouraging closer racing and boosting overtaking in F1.