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Wednesday, June 19, 2024

Incorrect to “punish” Crimson Bull for its F1 dominance

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Max Verstappen’s Crimson Bull squad has received all however one grand prix this season and collectively they’ve already clinched each the drivers’ and constructors’ championship with 5 races remaining.

The size of their stranglehold on F1 seems to have led to a fall-off in fan curiosity, and a latest report by social intelligence firm Buzz Radar highlighted a big drop in social media engagement. 

The dearth of pleasure of the 2023 season has prompted some to counsel that F1’s bosses ought to intervene and attempt to degree issues up higher on the entrance to make it extra of a present subsequent 12 months.

However whereas Ben Sulayem is open to any concept that will assure extra pleasure however be honest to all opponents, he mentioned that the FIA is not going to contemplate something that’s geared toward intentionally holding a group again simply because it’s doing effectively. 

“It [domination] has occurred so many instances: simply take a look at Lewis Hamilton and Michael Schumacher,” mentioned Ben Sulayem, when requested by Autosport if he had considerations about Crimson Bull’s run of success being a turn-off. 

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“ cease? It is a bit harsh and never proper to go and punish success.  

“I am open for options for those who assume that there’s a strategy to be honest and to be democratic, and to not simply punish Max and his group or some other group. We’re all ears right here actually. 

Max Verstappen, Crimson Bull Racing, 2nd place and 2023 drivers world champion, receives his Dash race trophy from Mohammed ben Sulayem, President, FIA

Picture by: Andy Hone / Motorsport Images

“However I am caught such as you. There isn’t any method that the FIA will punish success, and it [one driver dominance] has occurred earlier than twice in my time.”  

Whereas the FIA is not going to intervene to control the present, it’s methods to assist enhance overtaking for 2025.

The brand new 2022 floor impact rules have been designed to assist make it simpler for automobiles to comply with one another, however their effectiveness has waned since their introduction.

Just lately the FIA’s head of single-seater issues Nikolas Tombazis outlined that group efforts to enhance efficiency had had a adverse affect on raceability – which is why it’s automobile tweaks.

“If we take the 2021 F1 automobiles, primarily based on being two lengths from the automobile in entrance, they have been shedding greater than 50% of the [aero] load,” he mentioned. 

“With the 2022 single-seaters, there was solely a 20% discount in load. However now we’re at about 35%. Certainly there was a worsening.” 

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One of many phenomena that has triggered this drop in effectiveness is that groups have higher mastered the return of out-wash traits – which diverts disturbed airflow away from the automobile to assist scale back drag. 

Whereas that is good for particular person efficiency, it has a consequence of constructing it tougher for different automobiles to comply with intently. 

Ben Sulayem was conscious that the groups have been pushing in instructions that have been forcing the FIA to reply, however didn’t assume it was a foul factor. 

“They’re getting smarter, however we’ve got to be smarter than them,” he mentioned.

“It’s a good factor they’re as a result of they’re making the extent larger for us. Truthfully, in the event that they did not, we’ll be sitting there, like [stuck] on E5 gasoline, relating to emissions.

“We’d turn out to be lazy, and we’d turn out to be not artistic, and there could be no problem.”

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