The new regulations for next year, such as a return to tyre changes in the race and V8 engines, have met with mixed reactions but one man reasonably happy with the changes is Michael Schumacher. The Ferrari driver supports the regulations on safety grounds and spoke out in support of FIA president Max Mosley, who was recently re-elected.
"It is no surprise that I was pleased at Max Mosley's re-election as FIA president," said Schumacher.
"Max has always looked after the safety of the drivers and tried to improve safety levels in our sport. He is always willing to talk and listen to our needs and he works to guarantee that everything goes smoothly and that calmness reigns in Formula One."
Schumacher was recently quoted in the German press as saying that the new regulations were 'a joke' but he claimed that was not what he said. "I have the feeling that my recent declarations have been misinterpreted," he commented.
"I have already emphasised that I don't think that constant rule changes are a good thing and so changing the rules every year would not be advantageous to the sport. However, this does not mean that I am not in favour of the new regulations. In fact, I believe they are positive moves."
"For instance, allowing tyre changes again is a significant step forward, above all for safety reasons. It was also an astute move to introduce the V8 2400cc engine. As to the new qualifying system, I think that we have to wait and see whether they will lead to the desired improvements."
While Schumacher is now on his winter break, Ferrari is already back at work. Felipe Massa and test driver Luca Badoer were on track at Vallelunga recently, running chassis comparisons, V8 engine evaluation and tyre programmes. Badoer and fellow tester Marc Gen? will be back on track at the Sakhir circuit in Bahrain from November 19th.