Formula 1 cars will be frozen from September 30, 2020 to the end of the 2021 season, with the teams only being able to make changes of their choice during this period corresponding to two “development tokens”. They were required to inform the FIA as early as last Wednesday of how these tokens would be used.
However, the rule has been formulated in such a way that it is possible for teams that have acquired 2019 parts from other teams for the current season to incorporate the corresponding 2020 elements into their design without consuming tokens, for example Racing Point and AlphaTauri. The Silverstone structure will notably be able to adopt the 2020 version of the Mercedes gearbox.
Mattia Binotto (director of Scuderia Ferrari) and Marcin Budkowski (executive director of Renault F1 Team) expressed their frustration with this flaw which could put them at a disadvantage; Andreas Seidl, team leader McLaren, logically goes in their direction, especially as his team must use its tokens to adopt the Mercedes power unit.
“We are not happy with this decision, because for us it just does not make sense”, says Seidl. “If you compare that to our situation, we have a contract in place for some time to switch from Renault power units to Mercedes.”
“We have to accept the fact that we ultimately have to use the two development tokens given to each team for that purpose, and accepting that compromise was fine with us. If you compare that with another team, which is going from version 2019 to 2020 , with the gearbox or suspension parts for example, being able to do it without consuming a token just doesn’t make sense. But that’s something we’ll be raising with other teams at the FIA. C it is up to the FIA to speak out on this. “
However, it seems that the dialogue is not over. “This has been and remains an ongoing dialogue. We are working a lot with the FIA to finalize the details of the regulations. This is where we are now. I think in these discussions, with what Mattia and Marcin said, it’s just important to bring this up again “, concludes the German.