After some serious testing and re-thinking, the FIA have announced new Safety Car rules for 2009. Many have criticized the rules as they have caught many teams out and changed the results of the race with the “closed pit” scenario. Max and the FIA have looked long and hard at the situation and Charlie Whiting has announced their resolution:
“The rule introduced in 2007 was a bad one, and we’ve gone back to the 2006 regulations,” said Whiting on Tuesday. “The only difference is we intend to implement a minimum time back to the pits.
“When we deploy the safety car, the message will go to all the cars, which will then have a “safety car” mode on their ECUs. As soon as that message gets to the car, it’ll know where it is on the circuit, and it’ll calculate a minimum time for the driver to get back to the pits. The driver will have to respect this and the information will be displayed on his dashboard.
“If you remember, the reason we closed the pit entry was to remove the incentive for the driver to come back to his pit quickly. That’s gone now, as you won’t be able to reach the pits any quicker than your dashboard display allows you to. “