Fuel Ban for 2010…and blankets too

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So the FIA have decided that a ban on refueling for the 2010 season is a good idea but to be fair, I believe most of the teams agreed with this as well. Now I may be the only human alive that likes refueling during a race and you could accuse me of liking something as random as a “managed tire” program, which I hate, but the refueling added an element of strategy that I personally enjoyed. Many could argue that the Tire Management or the skip-a-step tire strategy is equally adding an element of strategy as well. Fair enough, perhaps I have become jaded to the refueling concept and the tire management program is new and unsettling for me. But my mind still hates the Managed Tire program and likes refueling…I don’t know, you do the math.

“It was confirmed that from 2010, refuelling during a race will be forbidden in order to save the costs of transporting refuelling equipment and increase the incentive for engine builders to improve fuel economy (to save weight),”

I know that critics, like myself, would argue that the standardized refueling nozzle has created more gaffs and affected more race outcomes that it should and you would be right in saying that. But how much fun was it for Grace to watch Felipe drag the entire refueling rig down pitlane? That alone is worth the refueling option to remain in F1. Also, why have a mandated Managed Tire program to add artificial racing “strategery” if you are suggesting that refueling is the very same thing? Should we not look at both situations as elements that artificially affect the outcome of a race and be more diligent in our fact finding mission to consider the implications of mandating tire changes but not allowing for light, medium and heavy fuel loads?

To me, every team will know that all cars are heavy for the whole race. I can see if this refueling ban was coupled with a “green” program that mandated a limited fuel-flow system and forced the teams to engineer new fuel systems that maximized minimum consumption with equal power output. That would make sense but to mandate the use of two completely different tire compounds but eliminate the refueling seems even more odd to me. why not just ban tire changes and refueling and let the cars run head-to-head for the all out fastest car? If we eliminate the element of strategy or mishap; then perhaps we have a more accurate measurement of the cars and more exciting racing. Then again, I think the element of surprise (dragging a fuel rig down pitlane) has a certain jolliness to it that can only be met with amusement and bemusement; the tire ordeal is just confusing.

As for blankets? yeah, those are gone too. Except other means of heating are fine. Like the boxes out back that heat the entire wheel and tire that Ferrari use?

So what do you think? Should we ban refueling? Does it add or take away form the series? Keeping the tire debacle as the only element of strategy really a good thing?

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