International news

Browse pages
Current page

1

Current page

2

Current page

3

Current page

4

Current page

5

Current page

6

Current page

7

Current page

8

Current page

9

Current page

10

Current page

11

Current page

12

Current page

13

Current page

14

Current page

15

Current page

16

Current page

17

Current page

18

Current page

19

Current page

20

Current page

21

Current page

22

Current page

23

Current page

24

Current page

25

Current page

26

Current page

27

Current page

28

Current page

29

Current page

30

Current page

31

Current page

32

Current page

33

Current page

34

Current page

35

Current page

36

Current page

37

Current page

38

Current page

39

Current page

40

Current page

41

Current page

42

Current page

43

Current page

44

Current page

45

Current page

46

Current page

47

Current page

48

Current page

49

Current page

50

Current page

51

Current page

52

Current page

53

Current page

54

Current page

55

Current page

56

Current page

57

Current page

58

Current page

59

Current page

60

Current page

61

Current page

62

Current page

63

Current page

64

Current page

65

Current page

66

Current page

67

Current page

68

Current page

69

Current page

70

Current page

71

Current page

72

Current page

73

Current page

74

Current page

75

Current page

76

Current page

77

Current page

78

Current page

79

Current page

80

Current page

81

Current page

82

Current page

83

Current page

84

Current page

85

Current page

86

Current page

87

Current page

88

Current page

89

Current page

90

Current page

91

Current page

92

Current page

93

Current page

94

Current page

95

Current page

96

Current page

97

Current page

98

Current page

99

Current page

100

Current page

101

Current page

102

Current page

103

Current page

104

Current page

105

Current page

106

Current page

107

Current page

108

Current page

109

Current page

110

Current page

111

Current page

112

Current page

113

Current page

114

Current page

115

Current page

116

Current page

117

Current page

118

Current page

119

Current page

120

Current page

121

Current page

122

Current page

123

Current page

124

Current page

125

Current page

126

Current page

127

Current page

128

Current page

129

Current page

130

Current page

131

Current page

132

Current page

133

Current page

134

Current page

135

Current page

136

Current page

137

Current page

138

Current page

139

Current page

140

Current page

141

Current page

142

Current page

143

Current page

144

Current page

145

Current page

146

Current page

147

Current page

148

Current page

149

Current page

150

Current page

151

Current page

152

Current page

153

Current page

154

Current page

155

Current page

156

Current page

157

Current page

158

Current page

159

Current page

160

Current page

161

Current page

162

Current page

163

Current page

164

Current page

165

Current page

166

Current page

167

Current page

168

Current page

169

Current page

170

Current page

171

Current page

172

Current page

173

Current page

174

Current page

175

Current page

176

Current page

177

Current page

178

Current page

179

Current page

180

Current page

181

Current page

182

Current page

183

Current page

184

Current page

185

Current page

186

Current page

187

Current page

188

DRS wings set for Le Mans

Privateers to get aero advantage to close gap to works LMP1 cars | BY Gary Watkins

LMP1 privateers will be allowed a drag reduction system in 2018. Its introduction is among a raft of measures designed to bring the independents closer to the factories in the World Endurance Championship over the next two years. 

A rear DRS wing will follow an initial batch of rule changes for non-hybrid P1 cars in 2017. These include new aerodynamic freedoms, a weight reduction and the removal of restrictions on engine development. The moves are designed to reduce the gap between the manufacturer P1 entries and the privateers, which has grown during the hybrid era. The average lap-time deficit in a six-hour race has grown from 2.5sec in 2011 to 7.5sec last season. 

The introduction of active aerodynamics had been discussed for 2017, but the FIA and the Automobile Club de l’Ouest, which jointly write the P1 rule book, have decided against rushing it through. ACO sporting director Vincent Beaumesnil explained that details had yet to be worked out. 

“There are many rules that need to be written because clearly there are many safety aspects that need to be considered,” he said. “We know that we want to do it because it offers a cheap performance gain, but exactly how we do it still needs to be worked out.”

A front DRS system – working on the internal wings under the nose – was to be part of the plan, but Beaumesnil stated that this was no longer on the table. 

“The technical people at the FIA and the ACO are saying that it would be too complex,” he said. “For the moment we are only working on rear DRS.”

Changes for 2017

Aerodynamic rule changes for privateers next year will allow for a wider and deeper – and therefore more efficient – rear wing and a 50mm extension of the front dive planes. The new engine rules for 2017 will remove the limitation on the number of powerplants, currently five, used by each car over a season.
The capacity limit of 5.5 litres for the engines in non-hybrid cars will also be removed. The minimum weight of the cars will also drop from 858 to 838kg.

Bart Hayden, boss of leading privateer Rebellion Racing, welcomed the moves. “They couldn’t have done more for next year, because DRS needs to be studied hard before it is introduced,” he said. “It is difficult to pluck a lap time gain out of the air for next year, but with the right amount of wind-tunnel work there could be two and a half seconds there.”

US prototypes for Le Mans?

The idea of allowing cars built to the Daytona Prototype International rules for next year’s IMSA SportsCar Championship to race with the P1 privateers at Le Mans is gaining ground. IMSA boss Scott Atherton, who was present at this year’s 24 Hours, explained that discussions have started on the subject after it was first floated by ACO president Pierre Fillon in March. 

“We believe there is an opportunity for a DPi to compete as a privateer P1 at Le Mans and it doesn’t seem to be a bridge too far,” he said. “Nothing is finalised and the technical people from both sides still need to get together.”

The first idea was that DPi cars, to be based on the new-for-2017 LMP2 generation, would be able to race in P2 at Le Mans with engines developed for America but without their bespoke bodywork. This has been canned as IMSA allows free engine electronics rather than mandating the Cosworth management system of the Gibson V8 to be used in P2 in WEC and the European Le Mans Series. The compromise is to allow DPis to race in P1. 

Chassis life extended

Existing privateers Rebellion and ByKolles will be able to run their existing R-One and CLM P1/01 chassis into 2019. Their chassis are built to the same rules that will come into force for LMP2 next season, which would allow the four constructors granted licences for the new category – ORECA, Ligier/Onroak, Dallara and Riley/Multimatic – also to produce P1 cars. 

That means that privateers will not have to build new cars for 2018. The latest P1 chassis rules, incorporating cockpit safety upgrades, will apply initially only to the manufacturers. 

New aero rules for factories

New aerodynamic rules are being introduced to slow manufacturer hybrid LMP1 cars for next year, to the tune of four seconds at Le Mans. These will play a role in bringing the factories and privateers together, but the primary motivation is to keep a cap on speeds. 

“The number one reason is safety,” said Beaumesnil. “We need to control the performance of these cars, which have more downforce than a Formula 1 car, in the fast corners.”

The height of the front splitter will be increased by 15mm and the depth of the rear diffuser reduced by 50mm. This will also make the cars less prone to take off in the event of a sideways moment.