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Q&A - Charlie Whiting, FIA

Excerpts from Charlie Whiting's media briefing in Valencia ahead of the European Grand Prix
Engine map change restrictions

Q:
Simply put, what are teams now banned from doing under parc fermŽ conditions?

Charlie Whiting:
The teams are not allowed to make any changes with a computer that they plug in. The drivers are still allowed to change things from the steering wheel [however] the single ECU only supports fine adjustments from the steering wheel.

In very general terms, anything that can be done from the wheel is OK; anything they need to connect a computer for is not.

We are on the verge of issuing a note to the teams to give them a list of things that they can change when they connect their computers but that will be a very limited list.

Q:
What will happen if the weather conditions change between qualifying and the race?

Charlie Whiting:
We will allow certain changes to be made for ambient conditions. Normally, we only announce a change of climatic conditions if one [session] is dry and one is wet, but we have indicated to the teams that if there is a change in ambient temperature of more than 10¡C between qualifying and the race, we would allow them to compensate for that. But that's all.

Q:
What is the goal of implementing this change?

Charlie Whiting:
A team can't have a base map in the ECU that is only good for a few laps. If you want to use it, you have to use it for the whole race.

There isn't anything to prevent [a team] from exploiting the use of their exhaust gasses – providing those exhaust gasses are there for the genuine reason of engine combustion.

Q:
Will this affect every team equally, or will some suffer a greater penalty?

Charlie Whiting:
It is not for us to say whether or not one team will be penalised more than another. If depends how extreme they're going [with their previous map]. I've certainly seen evidence of maps from a number of teams that are Ôextremely' extreme. And it's not confined to one team.

Q:
Why do you want to see this stopped?

Charlie Whiting:
Because it's illegal.

Q:
How big an effect will this have on qualifying lap times?

Charlie Whiting:
It isn't something that we concern ourselves with and it's impossible for us to quantify it. However, during discussions I've heard that the most extreme maps may give you half a second a lap, but that would vary from car to car.

Blown diffusers:

Q:
Why will the off-throttle blown diffusers be banned from Silverstone onwards?

Charlie Whiting:
We know exhaust gasses have an influence on the aerodynamic performance of the car and we accept that. The point is that a design should not attempt to use the exhaust for a completely different reason [aerodynamics as a primary, rather than a secondary effect].

Q:
What are the new operating conditions with regard to throttle-opening and spark?

Charlie Whiting:
We only want to target this one specific issue – what we think is illegal use of maps for aero reasons. We don't want to influence the perfectly legitimate systems on the car – engine braking for example. We're happy for them to use that, but we want to be sure it isn't being abused.





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