APRIL 23, 2011
Concerns over DRS wing at Monaco
The FIA will consult with teams and drivers in Istanbul about whether or not to use DRS (Drag Reduction System) rear wings in Monaco.
Although the system had little impact in the season-opening Australian Grand Prix, its influence has been much bigger in both Malaysia and China and was hailed, along with Pirelli's tyres, as being the catalyst for much more exciting racing.
The concern with Monaco, however, is that the main straight (the run from the final, slow right-hander at Anthony Noghes down to Ste Devote) is too short and that, logically, the only other possibility is the harbour front section from Portiers down to the Chicane, which includes the curving section of tunnel, where drivers regularly have to contend with emerging from the artificial lighting into bright sunlight at speeds approaching 170mph.
The implications of that could be tricky enough in the race itself, but in practice and qualifying of course, the DRS wing can de deployed anywhere, which could create more hazardous situations.
Thus far, pre-season fears that the effect of off-line 'marbles' from degrading Pirellis could make it almost impossible to run off-line, have proved unfounded. Fernando Alonso, however, has warned that while there is no great issue at places such as Sepang and Shanghai, where there is plenty of run-off, it may not be the case at venues such as Monaco and Montreal. Another point to consider too, is that so far the Pirelli compounds use have been the hard and soft. In Monte Carlo we will see the supersoft for the first time, which could increase marbling, so there are a number of factors about which the FIA will take a sounding.