FIA delays ban on driver aids

The FIA has sent notification to the teams that the ban on driver aids, due to come into force at the British Grand Prix in July, will now be delayed until next year. Traction and launch control and fully automatic gearboxes were going to be ...

The FIA has sent notification to the teams that the ban on driver aids, due to come into force at the British Grand Prix in July, will now be delayed until next year. Traction and launch control and fully automatic gearboxes were going to be outlawed but because of the arbitration case by McLaren and Williams, the FIA is unwilling to invest in the technology to ensure driver aids are not present.

"The technical devices which will ensure the absence of driver aids (in particular launch control, traction control and fully-automatic gearboxes) require substantial investment," read the statement. "The FIA is reluctant to commit the necessary resources until actual or threatened arbitration proceedings have been resolved."

"Accordingly, the full enforcement of the long-established ban on in-car driver aids will be delayed until the first race of the 2004 season. If current uncertainties have not been resolved before the deadline for ordering the technical devices for 2004, competing teams will be required to demonstrate the absence of driver aids to the satisfaction of the stewards at each event of the 2004 and subsequent Championships."

This will no doubt please McLaren, who at least for this year will be able to run the new MP4-18 with all its reported technological wizardry intact. But it surely must be exasperating for most, as teams have already begun testing without driver aids in preparation for the ban.

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Series Formula 1
Teams McLaren , Williams