The FIA have published the new F1 regulations for the 2023 season, including changes to how and when drivers can use DRS and further delays to the proposed ban on tyre blankets.
The 2022 season saw a host of new regulations introduced which changed the fundamental concepts behind the cars’ aerodynamics and were geared towards allowing the drivers to race more closely together.
While the 2023 changes aren’t as game-changing as those introduced this year, the decision to bring forward the window for using DRS at the start of races to one lap instead of two could change the shape of race starts.
The rule, which will be introduced in Sprint Races next season for a trial and, if that is successful, for all races in 2024, is aimed at ” keeping the field closer together and encourage closer racing,” the FIA said in a statement.
“The Commission approved a proposal to evaluate a method to keep the field closer together and encourage closer racing by bringing the activation of the DRS forward by one lap at the start of a race or Sprint session, or following a safety car re-start,” the FIA said.
“This will be trialled during each Sprint session in 2023 with a view to introducing it for all races in 2024.”
“Not a strong enough deterent”
The changes also include changes to the penalty system for power unit changes, with the FIA saying that the current system didn’t provide strong enough incentives to prevent the teams from making a strategic call on when and how to switch in parts.
“It was agreed that the current system is not a strong enough deterrent to teams to make strategic Power Unit changes, and encourages the change of change of more elements than needed once a driver has accumulated more than a certain level of penalty.
“This ultimately causes higher parts costs and undermines the PU element annual restrictions.”
Wet weather issues
The issue of tyre blankets being removed was deferred until 2024, with the FIA saying it was still aiming to introduce a ban during that season.
“The objective of the FIA and FOM remains to remove tyre blankets for 2024, however following numerous discussions and driver feedback, the Commission decided to delay any final decisions until July 2023, allowing for additional data gathering and testing feedback to fully inform the conclusions,” it said.
The FIA added it had noted drivers’ feedback on the issue of visibility during wet weather races following the introduction of the new cars, and said it will take steps to standardise bodywork and other design features such as light to improve visibility in extreme conditions.