FIA bans radio chat about car and driver performance

The FIA is pushing ahead with its plan to cut back on radio transmissions – by banning all messages from pit to car relating to the performance of the car and the driver.

Drivers can still say whatever they want to the pits, however.

The FIA has used a long standing rule that says that drivers must drive the car “alone and unaided.”

The news was confirmed to teams today in a Technical Directive, issued by Whiting and seen by this writer.

Whiting wrote: “In order to ensure that the requirements [sic] of Article 20.1 of the F1 Sporting Regulations is respected at all times we intend to rigorously enforce this regulation with immediate effect. Therefore no radio conversation from pit to driver may include any information that is related to the performance of the car or driver.”

He also confirmed that teams cannot get round it by sending information in other forms: “We should also remind you that data transmission from pit to car is specifically prohibited by Article 8.5.2 of the F1 Technical Regulations.”

Team and driver can still talk about pit strategy and so on, but nevertheless the decision is sure to create a huge stir in the days to come…

22 Comments

Filed under F1 News, Grand Prix News

22 responses to “FIA bans radio chat about car and driver performance

  1. Steve

    What about the pit board joe?

  2. Fears

    What about fuel?

  3. LollipopMan

    It’s ridiculous constantly changing rules (or enforcing rules which have long been neglected) halfway through the season. Stuff like this should be sorted out before the season starts so everyone’s on a level playing field.

  4. Can’t help but feel this is for the show, as, from what I have seen this season, it seems Rosberg benefits a lot from this. Maybe that’s just the directors artistic license, but from what I can see, Ros is in the lead and something like this would benefit a more, dare I say, natural driver.

    I guess the show must go on, although hearing some drivers say “where is he quicker than me” : “He’s braking 5 metres shorter than you and using a higher gear on exit, getting on the power quicker” tends to grate a lot.

    I suppose it may even bring out the drivers talent more and make late night on Friday/Saturday more of a telemetry study.

    Having said that, it may even lead to more sandbagging?

    • I guess the show must go on, although hearing some drivers say “where is he quicker than me” : “He’s braking 5 metres shorter than you and using a higher gear on exit, getting on the power quicker” tends to grate a lot.

      This is fantastic [that FIA are finally acting against this]. It can only benefit a proper, natural racer like Hamilton, at the expense of a pretender like Rosberg who only seems to get around the track thanks to the – frankly – embarrassing “guidance” and exhortations from his engineer.

      Of course, I haven’t read the news in the past 24hrs, so at the time of my commenting the Fia may have already reversed themselves. lol

  5. Mick

    Good news. But does it apply AFTER a car fault has developed, i.e. can the team advise the driver how to work around faults by changing settings?

    • Interesting, say if the rear brakes were overheated and the brake balance needs moving forward to solve the issue, can the team still tell them that. It’s performance after all, can the team even say his brakes are hot? It’s going to be interesting to police that’s for sure.

      • Teams will get around this by “magic 5” style things… rear brakes are hot, adjust balance to front = “chicken is overcooked, take it out of the oven and get started on the beef” Just an idea to show you what I mean. What can the FIA do about that? It’s not officially car related, it’s about cooking.

      • sk

        No. Charlie said those are exactly the messages they are trying to get rid of. Drivers should have access to brake temps on the heads up display. Not my words, Mr Whitings

      • floodo1

        fascinating that this is the thought process:
        If teams could they would control the car (to some degree) remotely. Perhaps by adjusting the brake balance for the driver when they notice the temps changing. So Article 20.1 takes care of that by making the driver drive “alone and unaided.” Then teams get around that by simply radioing to the driver “you need to adjust the temps based on these temps we notice are changing”. So now they ban these specific radio communications.

        Too bad they decided to do this mid-season😦

  6. Park

    Unbelievable amouts of work for stewards!
    Can only 4 stewards police these radio?

    • Unbelievable amouts[sic] of work for stewards!
      Can only 4 stewards police these radio?

      Relax, friend.

      You forget the force-multiplier effect of other teams’ tattle-tales: all teams will be listening to pit-to-car radio traffic of all the other teams and will narc on any violators w/o hesitation.

      They already do it w/ on-track incidents (ex. pit-to-car: “Understood, Jenson. We’re already running over to Charlie to tell him that Checco ran you off the track and flipped you off for good measure.”).

      Carry on.

  7. Lars

    Was this the FIA getting back at Rosburg? Certainly Lewis has complained over the season that Nico hounds Lewis’ data to figure out where Lewis is faster than him…

  8. teamworkf1

    Well, this is it!! danica patrick can’t come to F1 now!!! LOL

  9. Steve C

    Is this just a way to get the noise OFF the airways about having to “save” the engine because the FIA is getting a lot of heat about the number of engines allowed before penalty?

    • GeorgeK

      The ban is ridiculous! High tech PU’s, carbon fiber constructs, aero wind tunnels, CFD computations in the lab, but they can’t use a radio to discuss driving options???

      Let’s go back to 1954 rules and technology and take lottery picks on how many drivers will die in a season.

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