As if managing tens of miniscule controls to specific and ever-changing conditions —– while racing at 200mph —– was not difficult enough, the movable rear wings on F1 cars for next year have these basic rules:
– the car behind can use them if it is only within 1 second of the car in front
– they cannot be used in the first 2 laps Or the first 2 laps after a safety car
– they can only be used on one designated straight (some circuits don’t have straights… no confirmed statement on this yet… presumably it just won’t be used)
– the driver in front can only use his – to defend – if he is also within 1 second of a car in front
The good points of this:
– quicker cars won’t get held up by worse cars only due to downforce problems
I think this is a good thing. Some may think it is bad that a driver in a worse car will be unable to affect a race through valiant and skillful driving in a worse machine (e.g. Petrov against Alonso!), however I find it very frustrating when a simple downforce insufficiency for a chasing car means that a champion-chasing car is held up by a mid-rank car
Also, if even the top cars are racing each other, if one driver does haul himself within 1 second of the car in front, then he has done well enough to place himself to take advantage of the new rule.
There is also KERS next year. The engineers think that the wing can provide as much boost as KERS. But KERS is limited to a number of times use per lap.
This is, therefore, going to provide more exciting strategy and quick-wits from the drivers, managing KERS while being chased – so the following driver may be tempted to either:
1- save KERS for the straight to use along with the wing
2 – if the driver ahead is saving KERS for the straight, then try a quick dash with KERS before the straight comes up – possibly a smarter move (on a circuit with 2 straights or at least 1 near-straight)