27 Mar 08
A decision by the FIA to relax some technical regulations for new manufacturers in the WRC has been given the thumbs up by the boss of the Suzuki World Rally Team.
At the most recent World Motor Sport Council meeting, the FIA decided to ease certain parts restrictions for manufacturers in their first year of entering the championship.
Instead of having to stick rigidly to the rules concerning engine pairing and the supply of spares like transmissions, steering racks and sub-frames, new teams may ask the FIA for a waiver to use two additional engines without penalty, and change other parts according to the sporting regulations.
Suzuki World Rally Team principal Nobuhiro 'Monster' Tajima had been critical of the original regulations which he felt placed too many technical restrictions on new manufacturers. As boss of the newest manufacturer team in the series, Tajima said rules concerning the repeated use of certain components made it difficult to improve a car in the early stages of its development.
But Tajima said that the revised regulations would be beneficial to his team and other new manufacturers in the future.
“We are very, very happy because they [the FIA] understood the opinion of a new manufacturer, said Tajima. “Of course in a perfect world we would like even more freedom, but the regulations are already here and we don’t want to destroy them altogether. We want to follow them like the other teams - this is motorsport, after all. But the decision to modify them a little for new manufacturers is a good one, and will help us to develop our car and build experience. That’s very important for a new team and I’m sure other new manufacturers will welcome the regulation as a good help.”