McLaren: Rule delay crucial to protect F1

Michelle Foster
McLaren chassis 2020

McLaren chassis 2020

McLaren chief Zak Brown has backed Formula 1’s decision to defer the 2021 technical rule changes by a year, saying it was done to “protect” the sport.

This year’s championship has seen eight grands prix either postponed or cancelled as the coronavirus pandemic causes havoc around the world.

This is having a huge financial impact on the Formula 1 teams with Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko saying teams lose “100 million” for every five races not run.

As such the 10 teams all agreed to delay next year’s major overhaul of the technical regulation, announcing they will race their 2020 chassis in 2021.

This is saving millions and also means the new 2022 cars will be designed and built under the budget cap.

Brown says he fully supports the decision.

“We’ve been totally supportive of these changes and have a proactive role in implementing them,” said the McLaren CEO.

“Together with the FIA, Formula 1 and the other teams, we’ve been proposing a number of ideas that help to protect the sport we all love while keeping our team, fans and wider F1 community safe.

“We have a huge responsibility not only to our people, but the wider F1 community, and as custodians of the sport it is essential we work together to overcome the challenges we face.”

Those challenges include trying to put together a revised calendar with the teams agreeing to give Liberty Media complete control over that when, or if, the 2020 season begins.

Two races that won’t be looking for a spot on that revised calendar are Australia, which was cancelled at the 11th hour, and Monaco which has announced that it would untenable to try slot in later in the year.

Brown added: “We support the decision to postpone the opening races of the season and, unfortunately, also the need to wait until 2021 to take to the streets of Monte Carlo.

“This unprecedented situation is constantly changing, but we will adapt to overcome the challenges it presents.

“Ultimately, nothing is more important than the health of the team, our fans and the wider F1 community.

“Our priority remains, and always will be, the health and wellbeing of everyone involved.”

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