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Your thoughts on the Formula 1 regulation changes- Have Your Say  

14 - 30 October 2002 News  
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29-Oct: The FIA issued a statement confirming that the Belgian Grand Prix is excluded next season due to the tobacco ban but could be included in 2004 if Belgium allows the event to run with tobacco sponsorship until the end of the 2006 - the date set for a world-wide ban on tobacco sponsorship. 
The statement read "On October 1st, 2002, the FIA World Motor Sport Council decided that unless the teams competing in the 2003 FIA Formula One World Championship agreed unanimously to participate in the 2003 Belgian Grand Prix without tobacco sponsorship, this event could not remain part of the World Championship. The decision was endorsed the following day by the FIA General Assembly. Yesterday the teams confirmed that none of them was prepared to race at Spa with a tobacco ban in place. Several of the teams currently have contracts which preclude them racing at any additional events without tobacco sponsorship. The 2003 event has therefore been definitively removed from the World Championship. 
The FIA and the teams hope that measures can be enacted in Belgium which will allow the event to comply with the proposed world-wide ban on tobacco sponsorship scheduled to come in to effect at the end of 2006. It could then be considered for inclusion in the 2004 World Championship."

Full Press release from the FIA 

28-Oct: The FIA announced today a number of changes to the Formula 1 regulations. None of the radical approaches were adopted (like adding ballast to the faster cars) but the Qualifying format has changed as well as expanding the points system to cover the top 8. Team orders will be prohibited but it isn't clear how they will be policed. Additionally, the FIA decided to drop the Belgian GP from the Calender.

Here are the changes in full:

The FIA Formula One Commission met in London today (October 28th, 2002) and decided on the following regulation changes:


  • There will be two qualifying sessions - Friday and Saturday, both 13.00 - 14.00;
  • qualifying to be one (only) flying lap for each car, cars to run one at a time;
  • running order on Friday to follow Championship (previous year at first race), with Championship leader going out first, 2nd in Championship running second, and so on;
  • running order on Saturday will be determined by the Friday times (which do not count for the grid), so that the fastest on Friday runs last on Saturday, the second fastest second last, and so on.

Practice schedule

This will remain Friday: 11.00 to 12.00 and Saturday: 09.00 to 09.45 and 10.15 to 11.00 (with qualifying from 13.00 to 14.00 both days, as above).


Provided that by 15 December, at least three teams undertake to the FIA not to run more than 10 car-days of private testing between 1 March and 1 November, the teams which have given this undertaking will be able to test at each Event from 09.00 to 11.00 on Friday and may use their spare car and their test driver during this period.

World Championship points

From 2003 points will be awarded down to 8th place on the scale 10:8:6:5:4:3:2:1
(previously to 6th place on the scale 10:6:4:3:2:1).

Team orders

Team orders which interfere with the race result are prohibited.

The 2003 Belgian Grand Prix

In the absence of unanimous agreement by the teams to run at the 2003 Belgian Grand Prix without tobacco advertising, this event has been removed from the World Championship calendar.


Each team will be allowed to use two different dry tyres at each Event, (previously each tyre company could supply only the same two dry tyres to each of its teams). Teams will continue to be limited to 10 sets of dry tyres per Event. Only one type of wet tyre to be used per Event.

Full Press release from the FIA 

26-Oct: Quotes from the 2002 6 'n' Pole competition winners and top 10 ... Quotes

24-Oct: China and Bahrain are expected to be added to the 2004 Formula 1 Calender after both countries reached agreements with Formula 1.

Bahrain's Crown Prince Sheikh Salman bin Hamad al-Khalifa announced that he signed a long term agreement with Formula 1 starting from 2004.
The Bahrain circuit is planned to open in March of 2004 and is expected to host the final race of the season. FIA President Max Mosley described the plans as the most exciting F1 project in decades and said "We've been talking about having a grand prix in this region of the world and particularly in one of the deserts for more than 20 years
This circuit that is being planned out in the desert is one of the most exciting projects we have seen in Formula One for a long time."

Meanwhile Formula 1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone has signed a 6 year contract with China to host a Grand Prix race at Shanghai. Ecclestone said "We've had many, many offers for us to hold Formula One racing in different parts of China and I'm very, very pleased that we decided to wait for Shanghai.
I will guarantee we will be here in 2004, the circuit will have been finished, and it will be one of the best circuits in the world. Hopefully Shanghai will be able to hold Formula One even after 2010."

Both Mosley and Ecclestone have indicated that existing events will have to be dropped in favour of new ones but they didn't comment on which of these events will be dropped.

The All-American Formula 1 team set-up by Dan Gurney has been put on hold due to economic uncertainty and lack of long term sponsorship. The group issued a statement that read "Despite a concentrated effort by a dedicated group of individuals, efforts to establish an all-American Formula One team with Dan Gurney as the catalyst have not succeeded in the short term.
The economy and the availability of multi-year sponsorship look less promising than only a short while ago. Some uncertainty in the future direction of Formula One racing does not help either.
The deadline we set for ourselves, which was dictated by the amount of time required by Ford Cosworth to put together their engine build and trackside support package, has not been met.
We were not prepared to commit to a situation which was not properly funded for at least three years.
It has been a long time since the American public has had a home team to cheer for in Grand Prix racing and, for now, it appears they will have to wait a little longer."

BMW's agreement with Williams ends in 2004 and they have yet to decide on what they will be doing beyond that. BMW Motorsport Direct Mario Theissen indicated that they may continue their relationship with Williams but on revised terms but they might set up their own team or quit altogether. He said "We want to become world champions by 2004. Only with perfect collaboration in all areas -- that includes the exchange of all data and the common use of computer simulations and research facilities -- can we beat Michael Schumacher.
The options (beyond 2004) are building our own Formula One car, continuing our collaboration with Williams in a more appropriate form or quitting Formula One."
Meanwhile Gerhard Berger who heads BMW's engine program has called for changes to Formula 1 to make the events more interesting. He said "The thing that needs to be done now is to put down in writing various approaches, and to have people who know the business select those that advance our sport.
We must aim to bring about races in which there is a lot of overtaking and in which it is not certain from the outset who will be the winner.
Everybody is aware that Friday is too dull and should again become part of the qualifying by fairly simple means."

As Jordan switch from Honda power to Cosworth power, they won't be testing until the new car is ready. The Cosworth engine doesn't fit in the current car and the team won't be building a hybrid car.

17-Oct: Lk wins the 2002 6 'n' Pole Competition ahead of Benjie and Napol75 ... Overall Results ... Japan Results ... Popular Picks ... Register

15-Oct: Michael Schumacher has described the 2002 season as 'unforgettable' and said "It was an unforgettable season, unbelievably good and unbelievably successful. You can't say any more than that. There are hardly words to describe what we've managed this year. You just have to look at the figures. 
For me, one of the most impressive statistics is the fact that I finished every race this year, that I didn't have a single technical defect to complain about. That is absolutely outstanding, because it's so unusual. But it shows the quality of the work done at Ferrari and the absolute dedication of all the Scuderia staff, whether at the race weekend or on the test circuit or in the works at Maranello. All these people can be extremely proud of themselves; they've achieved something special and managed to do something which had seemed impossible: to improve on last year's result. I know very well what I have in them and how much I owe to them, and so I'd like to thank them sincerely and send them my best wishes."

14-Oct: "Your thoughts on the Japanese Grand Prix" - Topic of the week - Have Your Say

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