The World Motor Sport Council yesterday agreed to move the date of next year’s German Grand Prix in order to reserve a slot for an additional European race.
The change follows the recent withdrawal of the Grand Prix of America from the proposed 2013 FIA Formula One calendar.
The German Grand Prix had been scheduled for 14 July next year, but will now move back a week to pair with the British Grand Prix of 30 June. A council statement read: “The date for the 2013 Grand Prix of Germany has been moved to 7 July, and 21 July has been reserved for another F1 European event, subject to the approval of the relevant ASNs.”
In other Formula One news, the council ratified a number of changes to the 2013 and 2014 Sporting and Technical regulations of the series.
Chief among the changes is that use of the Drag Reduction System designed to improve overtaking will no longer be allowed in practice sessions, except in the zone(s) designated for its use during a race. Until now drivers have been able to use the system – which provides greater speed via a flap in the rear wing – at any point on a lap in sessions prior to the race.
With regard to the 2014 regulations – when F1 will move to a 1.6 litre, V6, hybrid engine formula – the WMSC said a new draft of the technical regulations was discussed and agreed by the F1 Technical Working Group and Powertrain Working Group.
The new rules include changes to the power unit regulations, with the aim of limiting technology in some areas in order to reduce development costs, and a postponement of the requirement for cars to be driven exclusively under electric power in the pit lane until 2017.
Meanwhile, in the FIA World Rally Championship, the date for the ADAC Rallye Deutschland has been confirmed as 25 August.
In other rally news, two new titles have been created for two-wheel drive cars (drivers and teams) in the FIA European Rally Championship in order to improve the promotion and media coverage of the series. A qualifying stage will also be introduced for events run on gravel. The FIA has meanwhile issued a call for Expressions of Interest for the promotion of the 2014 Regional Rally Championships.
The FIA World Endurance Championship saw a change to its 2013 calendar with the Brazilian event in Sao Paulo now scheduled for 1 September.
The bigger news in WEC, however, is that the series will have a changed qualifying format for next year. According to the council: “The format of qualifying has been amended to make it more attractive for spectators and media. From 2013, two drivers must establish two lap times each and the average of the four lap times will be the reference time for establishing the starting grid. Warm-up has been cancelled, except specifically where required by some events.”
Also, as of next year, a limitation on the number of permitted engines for the LMP2 category and tyres for LMP2 and GTE Am will be imposed in order to help reduce costs.
In 2014 new LMP1 technical regulations will come into force. Strict equivalence between diesel and gasoline engines will be applied and monitored. Gasoline and