FIA Sets New Formula One Rules

The Formula One field heads into the first turn during the Spanish Grand Prix in Barcelona, Spain. (Steve Etherington Photo)
The Formula One field heads into the first turn during the Spanish Grand Prix in Barcelona, Spain. (Steve Etherington Photo)

CHICHESTER, England — The World Motor Sport Council of the Federation Internationale de L’Automobile (FIA) has approved a number of changes to the 2014 Formula One World Championship sporting regulations.

The most interesting of those changes is the introduction of a penalty point system for drivers. If a driver accumulates more than 12 points during a 12-month period, he will be suspended for the next race.

Points will stay on the driver’s license for 12 months. The amount of points a driver may be given for infringements will vary from one to three depending upon the severity of the offense.

A number of new regulations have also been confirmed to govern the new, far more complex power units. Only five power units may be used by each driver for the whole season. Any use of an additional complete power unit will result in that driver having to start the race from the pit lane.

Any changes of individual elements above the permitted five, such as turbocharger, MGU or Energy Store, will result in a 10 grid place penalty.

No manufacturer will be allowed to homologate more than one power unit during the homologation period from 2014-2020. Changes to the homologated unit will continue to be permitted for installation, reliability or cost saving reasons.

Other changes to the sporting rules include:

– Engine suppliers will be permitted to supply engines to a maximum of four Formula One teams in 2014.

– The procedure for a driver to be given the chance to give back any advantage he may have gained by leaving the track has been adopted.

– A significant reduction in the amount of wind tunnel testing and CFD work has been imposed to help reduce costs and potentially allow two teams to share one wind tunnel.

– Four two-day track tests will be allowed in season in place of the current eight one-day promotional days and the three-day young driver test. These will take place at tracks in Europe on the Tuesday and Wednesday after a race in order to ensure minimal additional resources are necessary.

Track testing will now also be permitted in January 2014 in order to allow earlier testing of the new power units.

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