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Old 01-11-2006, 12:33 PM   #1
Ferg
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Default WRC proposes engine ballast in 2006

Hadn't seen anyone post this up yet. Sorry if it's a repost.

Interesting idea.

Quote:
WRC could introduce engine ballast

By Tim Redmayne January 11th 2006, 15:56 GMT

Ballast could be introduced in the World Rally Championship next season to encourage manufacturers to build longer-lasting engines if a plan by David Richards gathers the necessary support, autosport.com can reveal.

Richards, who is the chairman of the International Sportsworld Communicators company which promotes the WRC, has suggested that instead of the current two rallies-per-engine rule, ballast should automatically be placed on a car every time it uses a new engine.

Weight would then come off the ballast total for every rally that the same engine is used.

Currently, the FIA 'twins' ten rallies for logistical reasons, mandating that the same engine be used for each pair of linked events. If the engine is changed a time penalty is imposed.

The former BAR boss has promised to discuss the idea with the president of the FIA's World Rally Championship Commission Jacques Regis, with a view to it being approved by the governing body and possibly introduced as early as next season.

Richards told autosport.com: "One of the things we have to do to encourage teams to enter the sport is to extend the life of engines and transmissions.

"Rather than have a complex rule of time penalties for changing an engine, I'm proposing a system where 100 kilos are placed on the car for a new engine and that for every event the same engine is used an amount, say 10kg, is taken off the car.

"Certainly weight of 100kg could hamper a world rally car and it would provide a big incentive to develop a long life engine and gearbox. If there is a performance advantage gained by running a new engine then they will have to suffer with weight.

"The privateer teams who need to make their engines last longer will be given a weight break."
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Old 01-11-2006, 12:38 PM   #2
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its a good idea in theory but i think i dont think it will fly. I guess we will have to wait and see. Good find.
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Old 01-11-2006, 01:01 PM   #3
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i think this is a god aweful idea... who cares about how long the engines last? i say screw that, and just make them as fast as possible ane change ANYTHING WHENEVER you want. why should 1 engine HAVE to last a certain ammount of time.
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Old 01-11-2006, 01:17 PM   #4
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Just two manufacturers participating. Anything that reduces costs will encourage privateers and low budget manufacturer efforts.
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Old 01-11-2006, 01:20 PM   #5
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Yeah, and even Subaru can't throw unlimit money at its race cars like Ferrari
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Old 01-11-2006, 01:50 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AdvanSTI
i think this is a god aweful idea... who cares about how long the engines last? i say screw that, and just make them as fast as possible ane change ANYTHING WHENEVER you want. why should 1 engine HAVE to last a certain ammount of time.

Been there and done that. Read up on the Group B era in the World Championship and you'll see what happens when the regulations are at minimum and the budgets are at maximum. The sport implodes.
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Old 01-11-2006, 01:50 PM   #7
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It still sounds overly complicated, and a silly idea at that.

Plus heavier cars are not inherently safer, and 100kilos of weight will affect far more than the stage times. Whearas a time penalty has no effect on the cars braking, acceleration, traction, or handling. This alone makes it a far safer than adding ballast to penalize for using highly tuned but fragile motors.

Imagine your rally car changing dynamics every event.... Makes it a lot harder to deal with the changing weather/road conditions/surfaces.
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Old 01-11-2006, 01:54 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LyveWRX
Imagine your rally car changing dynamics every event.... Makes it a lot harder to deal with the changing weather/road conditions/surfaces.
Rally car dynamics change at every event anyway, but I agree with you, a heavier car is not inherently a safer car.

The ballast proposes isn't desinged for safety, just cost reduction.

If they really wanted to make Rally cars safe they'd make the driver and co driver sit tandem and add NASCAR style door bars. As it is they really need to make the door bars mandatory.
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Old 01-11-2006, 02:04 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AdvanSTI
i think this is a god aweful idea... who cares about how long the engines last? i say screw that, and just make them as fast as possible ane change ANYTHING WHENEVER you want. why should 1 engine HAVE to last a certain ammount of time.
I should really donate my handle to people like you...
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Old 01-11-2006, 02:29 PM   #10
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How is a time penalty more complicated than a weight penalty?
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Old 01-11-2006, 02:31 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ferg
Rally car dynamics change at every event anyway, but I agree with you, a heavier car is not inherently a safer car.

The ballast proposes isn't desinged for safety, just cost reduction.

If they really wanted to make Rally cars safe they'd make the driver and co driver sit tandem and add NASCAR style door bars. As it is they really need to make the door bars mandatory.

It could work for more than just cost reduction. If the teams had to build stronger engines and transmissions then we could be seeing less mechanical faliures out on stages. Meaning a more exciting rally to watch.
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Old 01-11-2006, 02:31 PM   #12
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I dont like it because all the drivers will have different degrees of dis/advantage against each other. Therefore, it would be less exciting to watch if Petter had 100 kilos and Loeb didn't. Who do you think would win?
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Old 01-11-2006, 02:53 PM   #13
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100kg is a LOT of weight when it comes to a rally car. That is more than the weight of a single person (220lbs.).

Perhaps if they suggested 60kg for a new engine, and drop 30kg the following two races. Taking 10 full races to remove all the weight is just asking for the cars to be heavier/slower in the long run.

Or we'll start seeing manufacturers remanufacturing their engines between races, using the same block, etc, so that they are using the "same engine", but with all new internals.
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Old 01-11-2006, 03:10 PM   #14
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the whole two rallies per engine thing makes sense to me (in terms of WRC, not F1). Really, the rallies have become very short compared to those of yester-year, so its really the same amount of km's on the engine. Puts some of the endurance back in rally.
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Old 01-11-2006, 03:16 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Duo
i dont think it will fly.
Come on they will still fly.

The numbers thrown out are bit extreme - but the idea is a good one.

100kg is a lot for any performance car not just rally cars.

I think it should take longer than 2 events to lose all the weight, but maybe not 10. 5 events would be a good balance.

With the fallout of factories (which I don't think is all bad) I would like to see the privateers have the chance to move up in the field. There are guys out there that can drive well but can't afford to field the competitive car. I don't follow rally for the car show - I want to see the driving - including the need for some foot work, bring back the clutch pedal in all racing!
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Old 01-11-2006, 03:19 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 8Complex
Or we'll start seeing manufacturers remanufacturing their engines between races, using the same block, etc, so that they are using the "same engine", but with all new internals.
With the new "twinned rally" regulation they won't be able to have access to the engine. Unless they allow the teams to tear down a motor while it's still attached to the chassis I don't see a way around it.

Quote:
WMSC confirms 'twinned' rallies

By Tim Redmayne December 9th 2005, 16:03 GMT

The World Motor Sport Council has confirmed the 'twinned' rallies for next season.

Cars entering one event must use the same specified components in the other events of risk facing a time penalty.

As in Formula One, engines had to last two rallies in 2005, however the events did not necessarily follow each other chronologically and the FIA specified the twinned events for logistical reasons. Only two events were twinned for chassis last season.

The 2006 twinned list only specifies 10 rallies for engines and chassis, with the introduction of twinned events for gearboxes. There will also be a limitation on other mechanical parts across linked events.

The FIA also confirmed that the of Rally New Zealand has been moved to November 17-19.

Fill statement from the FIA:

WORLD RALLY CHAMPIONSHIP

The following rallies will be linked for engine and chassis in 2006:

Monte Carlo and Sweden
Spain and France
Italy and Greece
Germany and Finland
Australia and New Zealand

For these rallies the engine and chassis will be sealed together and it will not be possible to separate them, except under the supervision of the FIA. Each car will use the same engine and chassis for both rallies.

The following rallies will be linked for the gearbox in 2006:

Italy and Greece
Cyprus and Turkey
Australia and New Zealand

On the first rally of the link, two gearbox and differential assemblies per car will be sealed. On the second rally of the link, one gearbox and differential assembly per car will be sealed.
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Old 01-11-2006, 04:53 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AdvanSTI
i think this is a god aweful idea... who cares about how long the engines last? i say screw that, and just make them as fast as possible ane change ANYTHING WHENEVER you want. why should 1 engine HAVE to last a certain ammount of time.
Heh, spoken like a man who has never had to pay for a new race motor.

DG
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Old 01-11-2006, 05:15 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by turboICE
bring back the clutch pedal in all racing!
Bring back the steam engine to racing!
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Old 01-11-2006, 05:26 PM   #19
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How much more "R&D" will need to be put into engines that last infinate numbers of rallies?? I don't see cost savings there. Has anyone defined the breakpoint between reliablity and performance? One thing for sure is that Subaru has historically sacrificed reliability for performance.

Good idea, but it has issues.
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Old 01-11-2006, 08:40 PM   #20
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How many factory teams are in WRC for the coming season? They need to do something to bring in more factory teams. I am not sure these type of "cost savings" are the way to do that. I am glad I am not the one to have to figure out how to save WRC.
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Old 01-11-2006, 08:51 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joey1313
How many factory teams are in WRC for the coming season?
Two. Ford and Subaru. Citroen will run a Xarsa for Loeb through a privateer team with a plan to return to the WRC in 2007. Skoda, Mitsubishi, and Pugeot have all pulled the plug on their rally programs.


As Markko Martin said when he annouced he was sitting 2006 out....

"The championship is a bit **** at the moment. And I don't have any intention of joining everybody there who is dreaming that everything is ok."
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Old 01-11-2006, 11:55 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WRXedUSA
How much more "R&D" will need to be put into engines that last infinate numbers of rallies?? I don't see cost savings there. Has anyone defined the breakpoint between reliablity and performance? One thing for sure is that Subaru has historically sacrificed reliability for performance.

Good idea, but it has issues.
Not much. In F1 everyone was bitching about it. Then BMW came out and stated they really didn't do much to gain the reliability, and they saved about 4 million a weekend on engines simply by not switching it out every session.
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Old 01-12-2006, 03:48 AM   #23
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One very cheap and easy idea would simply be to force the team to step down a restrictor size instead of adding ballast. Say every time you change an engine you have to step down 2mm on your plate. Finish an event and you get to add 1mm.

Low budget teams without tons of engineering expertise would benefit the most from this. Tweaking a different engine map for each restrictor plate size is really no more involved than a few hours on an engine stand. This would do away with all the complexities of having to re-tune the suspension for every possible stage/ballast combination. It would also keep the safety nannies happy because braking distances/crash inertias wouldn't increase.

Thoughts?
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Old 01-12-2006, 07:21 AM   #24
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thats actually a good idea then manufactured cars from subaru will have even stronger parts every year sti are upgraded by subaru rally standard it is called homolagation i was told by a knowledgeably subaru dealer
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Old 01-12-2006, 07:23 AM   #25
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i think they reason a 2.5 wrx came out was because of new rally engine standards for wrxs 99.9 percent sure but maybe wrong
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