It's not hard to reason this one but you migh...
Michael Schumacher driving a McLaren instead of a cherry-red Ferrari is not the only thing different about Formula 1 these days. To level the playing field, the FIA has made quite a few rule changes this year. It’s hard for the casual fan to keep track of all the changes, so here they are.
KERS: Kinetic Energy Recovery Systems (KERS), like the ones used in the 2009 season, have been reintroduced in 2011 after the teams mutually agreed to suspend their use in 2010. KERS take the waste energy generated under braking and turn it into additional power. This is then made available to the driver in fixed quantities per lap via a steering wheel-mounted ‘boost button’. The minimum car weight has also been increased by 20kg to 640kg to accommodate KERS.
DRS with adjustable rear wings: Drivers of suitably equipped cars can electronically adjust the rear wing from the cockpit to alter its angle of incidence and thus reduce drag and boost speed. This system can be used in practice and qualifying, except with wet-weather tyres. During the race, this system (caled DRS) can only be activated when a driver is less than one second behind another car at pre-determined points on the track. The system is then deactivated once the driver brakes. In combination with KERS, it is designed to boost overtaking. Like KERS, it isn’t compulsory. The moveable front wing, used in 2010, has been dropped.
No F-ducts or double diffusers: Any systems, devices or procedures that use driver movement to alter aerodynamic characteristics of a car are banned. These include F-ducts and double diffusers.
Wheel tethers: Teams are now required to place a second tether on every wheel to improve safety. The two tethers must be contained in separate suspension members.
Tyres: Pirelli will be F1’s sole tyre supplier for the next three years. Tyre allocation has been reduced, with 11 (not 14) sets of dry-weather tyres available to each driver per race weekend.
If a driver fails to use both specifications of dry-weather tyres--the harder "prime" and the softer "option"--during a dry race, he will be excluded from the results. If a dry race is suspended and can’t be restarted, and a driver has failed to use both specifications, 30 seconds will be added to his race time.
Tyres will be differentiated based on colours of the sidewall lettering: wet - orange; intermediate - light blue; super soft - red; soft - yellow; medium - white; hard - silver.
Gearboxes: Gearboxes now need to last for five race weekends, instead of four.
107% qualifying rule: During the first phase of qualifying, any driver who fails to set a lap within 107 percent of the fastest Q1 time will not be allowed to start the race. However, in exceptional circumstances, which could include a driver setting a suitable time during practice, the car might still make it to the starting grid.
Team curfew: Team personnel will not be allowed into the circuit between midnight and 6 am when practice is scheduled to start at 10 am the following day, or between 1 am and 7 am when practice starts at 11 am. Each team is permitted four individual exceptions to this rule during the season.
Penalties: Stewards are now allowed to impose time penalties, the right to exclude drivers from race results and even suspend them from subsequent events.
Team orders: Team orders will be allowed this season. This will give manufacturers more control on race proceedings and lighten the burden on drivers.
Tip: Find a sports bar and spend a lazy Sunday afternoon downing some choice import beers, catching the Delhi race, and impressing your buddies with your new automotive knowledge!
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