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F1 | Engine mode restrictions are postponed until Monza

The ban, set to be effective from Belgium on, has been postponed until Monza, to give engine manufacturers the chance and time to gather data and informations 

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F1 | Engine mode restrictions are postponed until Monza
Fuente imagen: Mercede AMG - F1 Official Twitter

Some teams on the grid will still have a party in Belgium: engine modes used in qualifying especially by Mercedes, who calls them "party mode" will still be available and legal in Belgium, but not from Monza on. 

Initially, the FIA stated that the engines mode would've been banned since Spa, but now engine manufacturers will have more time to conduct dyno testing before heading to the race weekend. 

Last week Peter Bayer, FIA's secretary general for Motorsport, informed all teams to move to a signle mode for qualifying and race: article 2.7 of the 2020 technical regulations, headed “Duty of Competitor,” says: “It is the duty of each competitor to satisfy the FIA technical delegate and the stewards that his automobile complies with these regulations in their entirety at all times during an Event.

The design of the car, its components and systems shall, with the exception of safety features, demonstrate their compliance with these regulations by means of physical inspection of hardware or materials. No mechanical design may rely upon software inspection as a means of ensuring its compliance. Due to their nature, the compliance of electronic systems may be assessed by means of inspection of hardware, software and data.”

Bayer added that the “multitude and complexity of modes being used make it extremely difficult for the FIA to monitor compliance with all the PU-related regulations and provisions in selected critical moments of the event.

Also, article 27.1 of the sporting regulations requires drivers to drive the car “alone and unaided. The changes to ICE modes that are currently in force could potentially mean that the driver does not drive the car alone and unaided.”

"In order to address the above concerns in the future, we will be requiring that during the qualifying session and the race, the PU should operate in a single mode.”

The shift to Monza will allow team to gather more informations. The one which will be more affected by the rule is Mercedes, with its "party mode", but Toto Wolff insisted that the new ban will, infact, make Mercedes faster in race.

We see it very much as a challenge. We have a good quali mode and we are able to give it a little bit more power in that last session. But if that is not possible anymore because everything needs to be smoothed out over the race, then it’s not a deficit for us.

“On the contrary, we think we can translate it into more performance in the race. That is something that is a great challenge for us that will take on once the rule is implemented.” added the team principal. 

Toto Wolff also continued explained how the party mode works and how the ban will, eventually, help Mercedes in certain races. 

"I think we don’t lack performance on Saturdays. We had until now quite a margin. We struggled in some of the races where we were quite limited in powerful engine modes, and if F1 were to ban in-season certain power unit modes, then I think it will actually help us in the race.

“If you can avoid damaging your power unit in those few qualifying laps that you have available, in Q3 and then the odd lap in the race, the damage metrics goes down dramatically.

“So five laps of quali mode not being done gives us 25 laps of more performance in the race, and that is something we believe will give us more performance.

“You must take into effect even if it may hurt us more in qualifying, which I’m not sure, and it’s a couple of tenths, then it will hurt all the others in the same way.

“But for us, we are always very marginal on what we can extract from the power unit, and if we were to be limited in qualifying modes, then well, we will be stronger in the race.”

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