The FIA will start monitoring porpoising at the French Grand Prix
New measures to force teams to control F1 cars’ porpoising will be introduced in two races’ time
Two weeks on from announcing its intention to intervene over F1 porpoising, the FIA has confirmed the measures it will take from the French Grand Prix onwards.
Although the regulations themselves won’t change, the governing body will begin monitoring each car’s bouncing with an acceptable limit in place to protect the health of the drivers.
Teams in breach of that limit would then be forced to raise the ride height of their cars to cure the problem, or face exclusion on safety grounds.
Giving the teams until the F1 visits Circuit Paul Ricard later this month will “allow them to conduct their own analysis over the next two grands prix to understand what, if any, changes they may need to implement in order to be compliant”, according to an FIA statement.
The Technical Directive will also set out “some updated parameters relating to plank wear and skid stiffness”, basically reigning in the team’s ability to run as low as possible to exploit the ground effect characteristics of this year’s new breed of cars.
Porpoising and bouncing - two similar but separate problems, which TG has attempted to explain here - have become an issue for a number of teams this year, most notably Mercedes.
Both Lewis Hamilton and George Russell have complained of headaches and back pain in the aftermath of several races this season, and virtually all of the drivers are thought to be in agreement about the need to address the problem quickly.
However, not all the teams are affected having designed cars that have avoided the apparent pitfalls in this year’s regulations, and so a political row has broken out in recent weeks over how to prevent bouncing in a way that doesn’t affect the competitive order of the field.
Will the FIA’s approach do the job? Thoughts below, please.
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