No limitations on radio chat

The FIA have performed a dramatic U turn over the restrictions on pit to driver radio communications.

The strategy group met on thursday to discuss numerous issues of late, and the radio restrictions was one of them. There has been some negative feedback lately on the radio ban , with some unpopular penalties being handed out to the drivers for receiving instructions over the air waves. Jenson Button’s brake issue in Hungary being the latest one.

During the meeting which was attended by the top 6 constructor teams along with Jean Todt and Bernie Ecclestone, the key aspect was to deal with the criticism from the fans about over-regulated racing.

Moving forwards towards this weekends German Grand Prix, radio communications will be totally free. The only exception being the formation lap, when no communications will be allowed. This is aimed at preventing the drivers from receiving help with the clutch settings and general pre race procedures.

A statement issued by the FIA said: “At the request of the Teams and Commercial Rights Holder, the FIA has agreed to adopt a more liberal approach to the interpretation of Article 27.1 (that a driver must drive the car “alone and unaided”).

“With the exception of the period between the start of the formation lap and the start of the race, there will be no limitations on messages teams send to their drivers either by radio or pit board.

“This approach is aimed at providing improved content for fans and spectators, as teams will now be required to provide the Commercial Rights Holder with unrestricted access to their radio messages at all times that their cars are out of the garage.”

A rule change does not need to be passed, the previous radio restrictions were based on a technical directive as opposed to a specific rule.

So popular radio chat is back! More interestingly is the fact the top brass and the teams are listening to the moans and groans of the fans. Radio chat brings the fans closer to the action, and enables the racing to continue full tilt. Unlike Baku, when power unit problems robbed us of a Lewis charge through the field, and a Kimi fight back.

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7 responses to “No limitations on radio chat

  1. Great! Good to hear that something was being listened too – better than radio silence! Now – is there anywhere we can get the raw, undelayed feeds?

  2. Is this possible? The FIA have actually listened to the fans and the teams and have come to their senses at last? Or is it the very real threat of legal action, against the FIA, if an accident occured which could have been prevented by a simple radio message. Either way this will make a big improvement to the racing for the drivers, the teams and the fans.

  3. Big question here of course is does Nico get his second place back?

    They’d be on quite shaky ground to implement a rule for handful of races and to maintain a penalty which potentially could lose him the WDC. Counter-argument of course is that had Lewis been allowed instruction in Baku he may have scored more highly but that is conjecture – Nico’s is clear-cut.

    • As per standard rules, you do not go back on past rulings. The rules were known then and they are changed for the future not the past. Nico will not get his place back. That would be unfair and wrong.

      • Ah yes, but the way I read it is that the rule hasn’t changed, just the interpretation.

        And would it be any more fair if Lewis had a similar issue, was allowed team help to fix it and the extra points gained swung the final result? Especially when the interpretation wasn’t particularly clear anyway.

  4. They look like idiots, really, showing every weekend that they can’t do their job (FIA).

  5. Yay! Lewis doesn’t have to study the wheel controls anymore! Back to partying! 😋

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