March 10, 2011
More Overtaking in F1? I seriously doubt it...
The big novelty in F1 this coming season will be the addition of movable rear wings, this would allow drivers to trade stability for straight line speed and gain the few meters at the end of the straight that allow for a pass. Great you say? Not so fast.
As things stand now, drivers are not allowed to use the wing any time they choose, daring to go longer without rear downforce for example , or using the device in unexpected places on the track. No, wing usage can only happen with an electronic consent from race control!
Here are the basic rules as of today: During the race, a driver following a car within "one second" will see a light, activated by race control, on his steering wheel. Only then can the driver activate his "Drag Reduction System".
This will be available not anywhere on the track but just in "designated passing zones". If the system works that would mean you would never again see a car stuck behind a slower one, think Alonso and Petrov last year. No, all a driver would have to do is get within one second coming out of a corner, done, driver in front has no defense.
I don't know about you, but I find that almost a deal-breaker even as a long time F1 fan. I hope the rule gets modified to allow at the very least, use anywhere on the track, as they are now allowed to do on Friday and Saturday.
Not that that would solve the problem, drivers will still have to proceed mostly in single file, with only one line through corners, any time after the first couple of laps. Why? in the quest for the show, the FIA has asked Pirelli for tires that shed their rubber after just a few laps, the inevitable result will be more marbles than ever before, negating the usefulness of the movable wing.