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Hispania Threaten To Protest Against Diffuser

FIA announce a delay to a potential ban on the illegal exhaust system

Posted May 25, 2011 by Chris White

The glamorous Monaco Grand Prix could be overshadowed by any protests

After news broke last week that the FIA will delay the ban on hot-blown diffusers, several teams, lead by Hispania, are threatening to protest at this weekend’s Monaco Grand Prix.

The diffusers, which blow hot air around the exhaust when the car is not accelerating, assist the car with aerodynamics, downforce and grip.

By keeping air coming out of the exhaust when the car isn’t accelerating, it removes the rear-end instability that can be caused in a corner. By burning fuel in the engine while they’re not accelerating, but reducing the spark in the engine by as much as 40%, they overcome the issue, but the FIA see this as a waste of fuel.

FIA Race Director Charlie Whiting admitted that the hot-blown diffusers are in fact illegal, but has taken the decision to postpone any ban until the FIA technical working group meet on 16 June after representatives from the teams running the diffusers argued that they would have had to put to a complete revamp of their engine maps before the Monaco race. As a result, the diffusers will still be in use at Monaco and the following race in Canada.

Hispania – currently bottom of the Constructors’ Championship – are leading the arguments against the hot-blown diffuser, along with Williams and Virgin Racing who don’t use them either.

The FIA need to come to a decision a lot quicker in my view. By allowing the argument to run and run, they are only creating more problems for themselves. They have admitted that it is a breach of the rules, so ban them. Simple as that. If it causes problems for the teams with their engine mapping, so be it. The engineers and technicians are all highly trained, and it’s their job at the end of the day to modify the cars. If it means reduced performance, so be it, but if something is illegal, it’s illegal. Nip it in the bud now before it opens up a whole can of worms. Either ban it, or allow it, one or the other. A ‘postponed ban’ helps nobody.

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