According to the team’s boss, changes in Formula E regulation (designed to offset the impact of COVID-19) could give the top two teams in the championship an advantage.
For the 2020-21 season, the FIA and FE have amended their homologation rules to take into account supply chain delays due to the global health crisis.
This allowed Dragon Penske Autosport to delay the introduction of new cars, in addition to DS Techeetah and Nissane.dams, which finished first and second last year.
All three teams will launch a new campaign with cars carried over from last year and will introduce a new powertrain after April 5th. This is a revised version of the homologation window.
The remaining nine teams have all approved new cars to be used from the first race.
When this amendment (all 12 teams agreed) was first approved, the 2021 FE season provisional calendar featured five races before the end of April 5.
However, due to the ongoing pandemic influence, only Saudi Arabia’s Doubleheader Night Race will be held. Before this date.
Team bosses believe this has given them an advantage as DS Techeetah, Nissan e.dams and Dragon Penske Autosport have three fewer races to compete with older cars.
Jaguar Racing director James Berkeley told Autosport: “The homologation cycle changes were made for the right reason.
“There is no criticism there. If anything, it really helped everyone.
“Up to five races could take place, which was included in the plan when we made the decision. [to homologate the car in time for the first race]..
“It definitely gives the team that went to the second slot a small advantage.
“It’s hard to say to quantify it. We find it. It’s definitely not ideal.
“The challenge is now [to identify] What is the scale of that advantage, and whether it will be considered in detail by the FIA. “
Autosport understands that the timing of the revised homologation cycle was originally based on the number of race teams competing with the old and new powertrains.
While the April 5th date remains, the team is waiting to hear if the slots will change.
Allan McNish, Principal of the Audi Team, said: “I don’t think the makers who chose the second slot portrayed it as anything other than what they needed to achieve at the time.
“Obviously, it looks like it might have fallen into their hands a bit. When it comes to sports, it was definitely not part of the plan.
“But I can see how it happened and understand how it happened.
“No one should lose or profit from it because it was done for the right reason. It should be as neutral as possible.”
Mark Preston, principal of the DS Techeetah team, acknowledged that the situation “may be in our favor.”
He told autosport: [second] Slots only for COVID situations that have brought uncertainty to the supply chain, timing, and everything else.
“Sometimes things come to you rather than doing mainly intentional things.
“We did what we thought was the best and approved it long ago.
“Maybe it may work for our benefit.”
FE Homologation Rules May Give Top Teams a “Small Advantage” | Formula E News
https://www.autosport.com/fe/news/154695/fe-rules-change-could-hand-top-teams-advantage FE Homologation Rules May Give Top Teams a “Small Advantage” | Formula E News