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Monday, June 8, 2009

FOTA agrees to drop KERS for 2010

The politics in Formula One are reaching new heights of absurdity this season. The Formula One Teams' Association is pushing for the sport to abandon KERS entirely next year, after agreeing that the technology should be dropped as it is now too expensive.

Despite all works teams having already developed a race ready and fully functional KERS system it seems Renault boss Flavio Briatore has gotten his way as far as a vote amongst FOTA members is concerned.

While the move has not been universally welcomed, with BMW Sauber in particular once again keen for it to be retained, the majority decision by FOTA means that the move has now been put into action.

BMW motorsport director Mario Theissen said: "We have voted in favor of KERS but, as with all the other FOTA decisions so far, we will go with the majority."

Although KERS is currently allowed in the 2010 technical regulations, there is nothing forcing teams to run it. At the Turkish Grand Prix, only McLaren and Ferrari competed with the device.

While McLaren and BMW have each developed their own KERS the rest of the field including Renault and Ferrari are using a customer spec battery
powered Magnetti Marrelli KERS system that has proved troublesome for Ferrari in particular. Magnetti Marrelli have already begun work on a flywheel KERS system.

Quite how developing a technology and then dumping it after just one season is 'saving' money is questionable. The dominance of aerodynamics in Formula One, which is increasingly irrelevant to any road car application, has continued again this year despite the largest number of rule changes in the history of the sport that were designed to reduce the influence of aerodynamics in the sport.

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