Ferrari: "Too much standardisation" in F1's 2021 plans
Ferrari is “not happy yet” with the proposed 2021 Formula 1 regulations and is pushing back against standardisation, according to team boss Mattia Binotto.
F1 owner Liberty has been keen to put an increased emphasis on standardisation in F1’s 2021 rule revamp, and the ‘21 car blueprint unveiled in July has included standard wheels and brake systems in addition to other aspects of the car being simplified.
The final 2021 tech ruleset, however, will not be signed off until October, meaning that the degree of standardisation could yet be changed.
Speaking to Motorsport.com ahead of the summer break, Binotto said Ferrari was sceptical about the proposed direction of the 2021 car design rules, and in particular did not see a point to the standardisation.
“I am not happy yet,” Binotto said. “I am not happy as Ferrari yet. I think since the very beginning we always said that we are against the standardisation, and I feel we are going too much in the direction of standardisation.
“Why are we against [it]? Because we believe that, first, the DNA of this sport is competition, and standardising somehow is against the spirit.
“Second, because, whatever you're doing standard doesn't mean that you are saving money, because you need to re-engineer your car, your components, towards the new component, and that has an impact as well on the economical [side]. So I'm not sure that the balance is positive.”
Ferrari SF90 2021-2019 car side comparison
Photo by: Giorgio Piola
Binotto said that adding more standard components would not serve much of a cost-cutting purpose in 2021 given the impending introduction of the budget cap.
“Sustainability is a key factor, and I think the budget cap we are all in favour, we have all subscribed already, and I think the financial regulation is a key point of the future as well, because it's stopping expenses, it's closing the gap between the small and the big teams - even if maybe the budget which has been agreed is very high for small teams, but at least you reduce the gap.
“And I think that, again, it's back on the standardisation. I don't think we need standard parts to save money, because we will anyway spend whatever is the cap. At least the top teams will spend whatever is the cap, so on the standard parts will not be affecting that respect.
“So, while I understand the reason of them, I think we need to be careful in evaluating the risk versus benefit, and not forgetting also the final objective.”
Binotto also admitted to his reservations about the aero revamp for 2021, which will see championship return to a ‘ground effect’ concept.
“We have always been very concerned by the new aero regulation, since the very first time, for two main reasons here again.
“First, we believe that starting from scratch, a new regulation, there may be a lot of unintended consequences, so the level of risk is very high. And the second, because we feel that aerodynamic should remain a performance differentiator.
“What we should avoid as F1 is - we should not transform the sport into a show, I think that still it has to remain a sport, the show by itself has short legs.
“Certainly we need to improve the spectacle of our sport, which is two different things [show and spectacle].
“So, by doing that, I think we need to really be careful on what we are deciding, we should avoid to overreact, I think we may have spectacle today, there are few things that need to be improved and which we are all in agreement, I think we should be focused on those.”
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