An experiment with a Le Mans-style ‘slow zone’ in FP1 and FP2 today did not work, so the FIA is switching its focus back to a virtual safety car as it addresses the yellow flag issue for next year.
At the end of FP1 and FP2 today drivers were asked to run with their 80kph pit limiter in the nominated double yellow flag sector, and the preceding sector.
However not surprisingly after trying it out drivers expressed concerns about everyone braking at the last possible minute – as they do when they enter the pitlane and flick the limiter on – and the potential consequences should cars be running in a pack.
The focus will now return to a virtual safety car, over a full lap rather than just yellow sectors, as was tried in Brazil. The problem remains that drivers feel that they are distracted by following delats times on their dash screens.
4 responses to “‘Slow zone’ idea abandoned after Abu Dhabi experiment”
Then how does it work in WEC?
According to Anthony Davidson, today on SkyF1, it worked okay at Le Mans, but in Bahrain this year it was actually a problem too, people breaking at last possible moment, afraid to loose time to people behind.
Couldn’t this be done without driver intervention, with a positioning system that remotely located the car in the track and made it react automatically with preset speed, acceleration and deceleration rates as it reached a set yellow flag zone, and was applied consistently to all cars passing by? Drivers could be given a warning sound signal before the system engaged, no there would be no surprises nor distractions. I don’t see it as too complicated to implement at this level of racing.
Been wondering this since the virtual safety car idea came up:
Is it practical to simply say to the drivers: you can’t go higher that 2nd or 3rd gear? That would limit the speed, is easily policed (or automated by software) and let’s the drivers concentrate on driving.