Plans to improve overtaking fail to excite F1 teams

Ross Brawn (GBR) Formula 1Managing Director of Motorsport
© XPB 

A meeting of the Formula 1 Technical Working Group convened in Bahrain on Saturday has failed to reach any decision about how to improve overtaking.

The FIA decided to meet with team representatives this weekend after what was deemed to be a disappointing season opener in Australia.

Although any changes wouldn't come into effect until next season, the rules say that they still have to be agreed by the end of this month - hence the rush.

A bigger rear wing flap and a simplified front wing design are among the proposals under consideration.

The sport's director of motorsports Ross Brawn has convened a group of engineers under Formula 1 chief technical officer Pat Symonds to devise concepts for the 2021 package.

It has been hoped that some of these could be introduced into the sport even earlier than that, to help improve the on-track racing spectacle in the shorter term.

"There's some proposals going to the teams in the next few days for some things we could potentially do for 2019," Brawn told Sky Sports F1 this week.

"If you look at the front wings we have now, they are massively complex," he explained. "The flow regime around the wing is incredibly complex, which makes it very sensitive to the car in front.

"[If] we simplify the front wings, then arguably you could say that you're going to go back in the right direction," he suggested. "Everything we have done in the last few years has gone in the wrong direction.

However it seems that teams were underwhelmed with what they heard from Brawn and the FIA this weekend.

According to reports, they felt it was already too late to start making wholesale changes to next year's 2019 front wing regulations.

Teams also felt that more research was needed into the way that front wing elements were affected by turbulence from cars ahead of them.

Nor did teams want to see significant changes being delayed until 2020. If that were to happen, they would only be in effect for one season before the next major technical revamp in 2021.

Despite the lack of consensus at today's meeting, any proposals can still go to the Strategy Group. From there they can be passed on to the F1 Commission and ultimately the World Motor Sport Council for formal adoption.

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