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BREAKING: FIA intervenes on porpoising issue

After multiple complaints and requests by Formula 1 drivers, the FIA has decided to act on the matter of porpoising, on the grounds of safety.

Lewis Hamilton, Azerbaijan GP, Post Race / Photo by Motorsport Images

Many drivers have expressed their discomfort, while in the car, because of the effects of porpoising, revealing they had to deal with neck and back pains. Such drivers were both Mercedes drivers, George Russell and Lewis Hamilton, as well as Carlos Sainz of Ferrari.

The FIA has made clear that this is a safety measure for all teams, meaning that any changes do not require the unanimous support of drivers/teams.

FIA's official statement: "Following the eighth round of this year’s FIA Formula One World Championship, during which the phenomenon of aerodynamic oscillations ("porpoising") of the new generation of F1 cars, and the effect of this during and after the race on the physical condition of the drivers was once again visible, the FIA, as the governing body of the sport, has decided that, in the interests of the safety, it is necessary to intervene to require that the teams make the necessary adjustments to reduce or to eliminate this phenomenon."

"In a sport where the competitors are routinely driving at speeds in excess of 300km/h, it is considered that all of a driver’s concentration needs to be focused on that task and that excessive fatigue or pain experienced by a driver could have significant consequences should it result in a loss of concentration.

"In addition, the FIA has concerns in relation to the immediate physical impact on the health of the drivers, a number of whom have reported back pain following recent events."

The measures will include: "closer scrutiny of the planks and skids, both in terms of their design and the observed wear", as said in the official statement, and "the definition of a metric, based on the car’s vertical acceleration, that will give a quantitative limit for acceptable level of vertical oscillations".

"The exact mathematical formula for this metric is still being analysed by the FIA, and the F1 teams have been invited to contribute to this process."

The FIA added: “In addition to these short-term measures, the FIA will convene a technical meeting with the teams in order to define measures that will reduce the propensity of cars to exhibit such phenomena in the medium term.”

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