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Hopes crushed for 2023 Formula 1 rules plan

Hopes crushed for 2023 Formula 1 rules plan

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Hopes crushed for 2023 Formula 1 rules plan

Hopes crushed for 2023 Formula 1 rules plan

The hopes of a number of teams to further delay the introduction of the new regulations until 2023 have been firmly quashed by Formula 1 and the FIA.

The wide-sweeping rule changes were due to come into force next year, but due to the financial impact on F1 and the 10 teams cause by the coronavirus pandemic, it was agreed they would be delayed until 2022.

Red Bull boss Christian Horner was one of the main advocates for extending the delay through to 2023, claiming it would be "totally irresponsible to have the burden of development costs in 2021".

F1 managing director of motorsports Ross Brown, however, has made clear the new regulations will "definitely be '22".

Speaking to Sky Sports F1, Brawn added: "Some teams have pushed to delay them a further year.

"I think there is a justifiable need to carry these cars over into next year because we're in the middle of this [crisis), and I think that’s completely justified.

“The initiatives we’re bringing with these new regulations are to make the sport more economically viable in terms of the complexity, where the money is spent.

"The competitiveness and the amount of money you spend, with the cars we have now, they’re so complex that the more you spend the quicker you’ll go.

"We need to level off that slope and create a situation where money is not the only criteria compared to how competitive you’ll be, and therefore, we need these new cars to even that slope out.

“We still want the great teams to win. We have to maintain the integrity of Formula 1. It's a sport that still has to have the best people winning.

"But I think for a competitive form of racing in the future with these new regulations, these new cars, they’ve been deferred a year, but they’re definitely coming in 2022.”

Opinion

Christian Horner made a very valid point when he suggested a further delay until 2023.

Next year, all the teams will be looking to stabilise their businesses as none are immune to the current financial impact of COVID-19.

Even Ferrari CEO Louis Camilleri, in a conference call with investors this week, said the company was taking "a big hit" to its income without F1, citing a 30% drop (€39million) in commercial, sponsor and brand revenue compared to the same period a year ago.

As Horner pointed out at the start of April: "The most important thing we need now is stability because the one thing we know is that whenever you introduce change you introduce cost.

"Stability right now, and locking down as much of the car as possible, is the most responsible way to drive those cost drivers down."

Yes, the teams will be saving money next season - to a certain degree - given the carryover of this year's car into next year.

But the flip side is they will have to pump considerable resource into now developing and testing the '22 car before it can go racing in '23.

From Brawn's comments, it is clear Horner had support from other teams, but F1 and the FIA have equally as clearly flexed their combined muscle on this occasion and put a stop to such plans.

The thinking is the quicker these cars are introduced, the sooner they can be policed with a budget cap in place, which in turn, will ultimately help the teams save money and deliver what is hoped to be a more equitable playing field.

That budget cap is now due to be $145million for next season, with the aim to reduce that to $140million in 2022, with a further $5million reduction applied from 2023 through to 2025.

Aside from what is going on with regard to getting the season up and running this year, there is still - as has always been the case in F1 - the usual power struggle going on behind the scenes.

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