MARCH 23, 2004
Ferrari looking for clarity on engine change rules
The Ferrari technical director Ross Brawn says that he wants more clarity over the engine change regulations that exist because the team believes that they need to be tightened up to stop teams qualifying with one engine and then switching to a more powerful one for the race. There is a very strong argument that it will not happen very often but also it gives teams which have had bad qualifying sessions to have stronger races and thus improve the Formula 1 show.
Brawn said that he wants "an understanding of what we're allowed to do because it's not entirely clear and we need to understand whether you're allowed to make that decision as a tactical ploy or if you need to show you have a problem".
Brawn admits that Ferrari has looked at the various strategic options.
"It was always the obvious thing that you'd go to Monza, put the car on pole with a qualifying engine, then change to your race engine, go 10 places back but then have a very strong engine for the race. I don't think we want to see that, so the rules needs tightening up a bit."
The intention of the regulation was to cut costs and avoid teams using qualifying engine but there is no doubt that at certain race tracks there might be an advantage gained from an engine change.
Such a thing would probably only be tried by the teams that can afford extra engines but might be a useful way of brightening up races as it is obviously a big risk to start in the middle of the field.
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