In an interview with the media yesterday, Ross Brawn fears the introduction of major regulation changes next season will only lead to more of the same, whereby one team gets it right and dominates, whilst the others spend two or three seasons playing catch up.
That has happened on several occasions, recently with Brawn and Red Bull and now with Mercedes. The Anglo-German outfit has won 50 of the 58 races since the introduction of the hybrid-V6 power unit and only now are its rivals beginning to catch up.
In his interview with the media yesterday, Brawn suspects that will happen again, and whilst it might not be Mercedes that is leading, it will inevitably be one of the major teams. Brawn said the following:-
‘What you may well see next year is somebody takes an interpretation of the regulations, gets ahead of the game and has a big advantage. I don’t know who that might be, but you could easily see someone disappearing [into the distance].’
Further on in his interview with the media, Brawn suggests leaving the regulations stable for a longer period of time would do the spectacle some good. Brawn added the following:-
‘I think the reality is the longer you leave the regulations the same, the closer the teams get – and you are starting to see that now. Mercedes is still winning but people are starting to nip at their heels and more time with the same regulations would make that even closer I’m sure.’
Finally Brawn is also concerned by the new rules themselves. Whilst they’re likely to achieve the targeted five-second per lap improvement, it won’t necessarily lead to better racing. Brawn stated the following:-
‘To drive that car at maximum speed for 50, 60 or 70 laps is going to be very challenging for the drivers. Therefore, I think you’ll see more variation during a race of drivers fatiguing and losing performance – that will be a positive element.
‘[But] most of the performance gain appears to be from aerodynamic benefits and I’m always a little bit nervous about that because of the relationship between the cars on the track.
‘The more aerodynamic performance you create, the more sensitive you are to the wake of the car in front. It’s not always the case, because the aerodynamics can be profiled and shaped and managed to reduce that impact, but inherently that is the case. So I hope these regulations aren’t going to impact the ability of these cars to race together.’