F1 CEO Not Worried About 2026 Rules Controversy

F1 Grand Prix Of Emilia Romagna Practice & Qualifying
F1 Grand Prix Of Emilia Romagna Practice & Qualifying

F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali says he’s confident the controversy surrounding the sport’s planned 2026 rules revolution will soon end.

Drivers and teams have expressed concerns about the chassis compromises required to accommodate the ambitiously-powered hybrid elements of the new power units, amid rumours Renault may be considering scrapping the project altogether.

But Domenicali says tweaks are possible.

“The last word has not yet been spoken,” he told Auto Motor und Sport. “We still have enough time to make improvements.

“We must now act wisely and look for sensible solutions instead of pointing fingers at each other.”

However, Domenicali admits that if the engine rules were being written from scratch today, the move to sustainable fuels may have been enough to satisfy the carmakers.

“The world has recognised that there are several ways to achieve sustainability,” said the Italian. “My personal opinion is that it would be enough to have the climate-neutral fuel. But at the time we had to take the manufacturers’ wishes into account.

“I can imagine that with the next regulations we can limit ourselves to sustainable fuel. Then the cars and engines would be lighter and less complex again,” he added. “And the engines would have a good sound again.

“But right now we should focus on the next step, not the one after that.”

According to former F1 engineer Kees van de Grint, the current rules controversy and dispute has been significantly worsened by the teams themselves.

“The teams talk far too much and this slows everything down,” the ex-Bridgestone and Ferrari man told Formule 1 Paddockpraat.

“Look at the attempts to abolish the tyre warmers, which has been talked about for years. They are still there!

“I think the regulator should just say ‘This is the rule, see how you solve it’.”

Van de Grint therefore thinks F1 has in fact not even been ambitious enough with the 2026 regulations.

“There simply has to be drastic changes,” he said. “It’s all such small details now.

“Take the weight, for example. The cars are now far too heavy and yet they’re only reducing it by 30kg. As far as I’m concerned, it should be 200kg, but there are all these people saying it is not possible.

“Nonsense,” the Dutchman insisted. “Everything is possible in Formula 1.”

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