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F1 bosses scrap refuelling plans
03 Jul 2015 14:02
Formula One has abandoned controversial plans to reintroduce refuelling from 2017 after teams decided it would not be a good move, Force India deputy principal Bob Fernley said today.
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"The view collectively was that it's not going to improve the show and the decision was not to go forward with that," he told Reuters at the British Grand Prix.
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The proposal to bring back refuelling was raised at a meeting of the sport's Strategy Group in May as part of measures to make cars faster and Formula One more exciting for both drivers and fans.
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However, the initial enthusiasm waned when some questioned why something that was banned in 2010 for reasons of cost and safety should be revived at a time when teams were trying to save money.
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Concerns about refuelling narrowing the strategy options were also raised.
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A Strategy Group meeting on Wednesday formally shelved the idea, and there was no mention of refuelling - which would require heavy rigs and extra pit crew to operate them -- in a statement issued on Thursday.
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Instead, it mentioned a proposal to increase the race fuel allowance.
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Fernley said the refuelling proposal had stemmed from a desire to increase engine horsepower, which would require more fuel and either bigger tanks or the chance to put more in during the race.
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The Force India boss said the latest Strategy Group meeting had been constructive, particularly in overhauling power unit penalties and increasing restrictions on driver aids.
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"There were some very important decisions made, quickly and efficiently to deal with issues in Formula One from Austria in terms of penalties. I thought we did a good job with all of that," he said.
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"There are three or four initiatives, if you like, that now need to go through the process.
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"Initially, those have to go through the engine manufacturers, the FIA, the commercial rights holder or a combination of them to see if they have got merit and can go to the next stage, which is for the teams to evaluate."
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They include possible changes to the qualifying and race weekend formats for 2016.
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Fernley said many of the suggestions were "purely a conceptual idea" at present.
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