Formula 1’s new regulations are still set to be introduced in 2022 despite, suggestions they could be pushed back a further year, following a meeting of team bosses.
FIA president Jean Todt and F1 CEO Chase Carey held a conference call with the 10 teams on Monday to discuss further changes to the sport in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. One suggestion – made by Red Bull’s Christian Horner last week – was to push the already-delayed new technical regulations back from 2022 to 2023, but the idea was dismissed.
There were also talks regarding the budget cap, which was previously set at $175million. While the cap will still come into force next year despite the new cars being delayed, teams are understood to be open to lowering that cap further. However, there was not agreement on what the level should be – with the totals of $150m, $125m and $100m suggested – as different teams feel their business models don’t fit a blanket approach if the number is too low.
The call took place during a mandatory shutdown period, with the FIA’s moving the August break forward and all teams having to stop work for three consecutive weeks before the end of April. While many European countries are still in a state of lockdown, some are ahead of others in terms of their handling of coronavirus and that led to a lack of unanimous agreement to extend the shutdown period further.
Ferrari is understood to not have been keen for a longer shutdown, having had to close its factory in Italy earlier than other teams, but eventually agreed as the FIA confirmed that the period would become five weeks.
“Following unanimous approval by the Formula 1 Strategy Group, Commission and all teams, the World Motor Sport Council has ratified by e-vote the decision to extend the Formula 1 shutdown period from 21 to 35 days, to be taken in March, April and/or May, for all competitors and Power Unit manufacturers,” an FIA statement read.
“Further discussions regarding this topic remain open between the FIA, Formula 1 and all teams in light of the ongoing global impact of COVID-19.”
Further calls are planned in the coming week, when the budget cap topic is likely to be revisited following further consideration.