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Christian Horner

'They should be black-flagged' - Horner offers alternative to FIA's porpoising regulations

With the FIA's plan to regulate F1 cars' permitted levels of porpoising proving controversial, Christian Horner says cars that are considered unsafe should simply be disqualified.

Christian Horner
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Red Bull Team Principal Christian Horner believes that cars that are considered to suffer with dangerous levels of porpoising should be disqualified from Grands Prix.

F1's aero regulations for 2022 mean downforce is predominantly generated by airflow under the car, sucking it down to the ground.

However, a side effect of this is that the car's natural frequency can cause resonance through the chassis, resulting in the car bouncing or 'porpoising' down the straights.

On Thursday afternoon, the FIA confirmed that they had decided, in the interests of safety, to introduce a technical directive aimed at reducing or eliminating porpoising.

This includes creating a threshold for the "acceptable level of vertical oscillations", using a formula that is yet to be determined.

But Horner says he is against the idea of a mid-season change in regulations, and suggested instead that cars with unsafe levels of porpoising should be black-flagged and disqualified from races.

"It would be unfair to have effectively what we'd deem to be a regulation change halfway through a year because a team has missed a target," Horner told Sky Sports F1.

"The emphasis should be on that team to sort the issue.

"If the car is dangerous, that's down to the FIA. They still have a black flag in their armoury.

"If they deemed the car was dangerous or unacceptable for drivers' safety, they would and should black flag it."

Horner: Teams should solve their problems

Horner is the latest to add his voice to the chorus of key F1 figures unhappy with the FIA's decision to introduce a technical directive addressing porpoising.

Mercedes' Technical Director James Allison has voiced concerns over this approach, saying it could cause arguments between teams unless they were all able to follow their rivals' metrics in real-time.

However, Horner, whose Red Bull team have managed the porpoising issue better than Mercedes, dismissed Allison's concerns, suggesting instead that teams who struggle more with porpoising were looking to influence the FIA into changing the rules in their favour.

"It's the same rules for everybody," Horner commented.

"Some cars have the [porpoising] issues, some cars don't. For the ones that [porpoise], inevitably, there will be a push to try and get regulations changed.

"That's the nature of the game, that's the nature of Formula 1, and you can understand James and his drivers inevitably pushing for that."

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