Ross Brawn: early starters on 2017 can “shape arguments” over new F1 rules
Brawn GP
Posted By: Editor   |  15 Dec 2016   |  7:30 pm GMT  |  98 comments

Ross Brawn says that the teams that made the earliest start on their designs for the 2017 Formula 1 season will have an additional advantage because they can shape the direction of arguments over the interpretations of the new rules.

The 62-year-old was in charge of the Honda squad that later became his own eponymous team in 2009, and Mercedes during the design process for the two most recent major F1 regulation changes and both of those teams went on to win the championship in the first year of the new rulebooks (although Brawn left Mercedes before the start of the 2014 season).

Brawn, who was also a championship-winning technical director for Benetton and Ferrari during previous F1 regulation sets, therefore knows from experience how making an early start on a new set of F1 rules can reap huge rewards for teams.

 Brawn GP

As well as having more time to design the fastest car, Brawn explained that teams that quickly came up with innovative interpretations of the rules – such as the double diffuser that appeared on his team’s cars in 2009, as well as the Williams and Toyota machines – will be in a better place to defend themselves when those plans are questioned by other teams who are seeking to stop advantageous designs from being raced.

In an interview with the FIA’s AUTO magazine, Brawn said: “Once you get into the application of the regulations for your team, then you defend your corner in order to get all the advantages you can.

“If you start early enough, if you’re the first team to query interpretations with the FIA, is that then you have an advantage because you can start to shape the arguments.

“Being early in that process was important and we found that with the engine when I was at Mercedes. We’d started the engine project very early. With the queries we were making to the FIA for clarifications, it was clear that we were the first ones to do that, so we could start to debate various elements of it. It also gave us some encouragement because we knew no one else was ahead of us.”

Esteban Gutierrez 2017 tyres

F1 cars will be built to a new set of chassis regulations for 2017 and the cars will feature wider bodywork and front wings, wider and lower rear wings, as well as bigger tyres.

Brawn believes the arrival of the new rules will mean cars will look more exiting next season and a change from F1 being such an engine-dominated championship.

He said: “Outwardly they should make the cars a lot quicker. They’ll look racy, with wider track, wider tyres, and the way the wings are profiled the cars are going to look pretty exciting.

Pascal Wehrlein

“It will be fascinating, though, as it’s putting the emphasis back on the chassis. There is a view that it was too much towards the engine, but actually I think it brought some balance. We went through a phase where the influence of the engine was almost neutral because everything was frozen and they were almost just a bracket between the gearbox and the chassis, whereas now people talk about the engines.”

Mercedes was either “going to stop or step up” after 2011

In the same interview, Brawn also revealed that Mercedes came close to pulling out of F1 at the end of the 2011 season, two years after it returned to the sport and signed Michael Schumacher and Nico Rosberg to drive the Silver Arrows 55 years after its works team had last participated in the championship.

At that stage the Brackley-based team had scored no wins and just three podiums, and had twice finished fourth in the two years since it had won both championships as Brawn GP.

Ross Brawn 2011

But the German manufacturer ultimately decided to up its investment in F1, a decision that has brought three consecutive titles drivers’ and constructors’ championships since 2014, and 55 wins, 65 poles and 108 podium finishes since 2012.

“Mercedes’ 2014 success was actually born at the end of 2011, 2012 when we had a tough meeting with the board,” said Brawn. “They were either going to stop or they were going to step up, because 2010 and ‘11 weren’t good enough. We had been following the resource restriction philosophy, which was collapsing. We were 450 people and we were fighting teams that were 500 or 600 people, and there’s no solution to that.

“We said to the board: ‘Either we step up or we ought to step back because we’re in between at the moment.’ The board, all credit to them, said: ‘OK, we’ll step up. We’ll give it a go. What do you need?’

Mercedes 2014

“So it was then that we put the project teams together for 2014. We hired Aldo Costa. We hired Geoff Willis. We hired the people we needed and it started to come together. That’s the strategic planning you need. You’ve got to have a vision of where you want to be in six, 12 months, a year, two years.”

What do you make of Brawn’s comments on 2017? Leave your thoughts in the comment section below or head over to the JA on F1 Facebook page for more discussion.

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Didn’t Ferrari learn anything from Brawn? From the outside it just looks like they’re putting out fires.


Brawn is spot on, you have to be ahead of the pack being chased, not doing the chasing!


2017 will see a “double diffuser” type falling-out. Guaranteed.


Great typo in the main text: “…cars will look more exiting next season.” More exiting, eh? Hmm… who will be first, I wonder? But seriously, the regulations shake up can only be interesting, and Brawn is right, the way the regs are fine-tuned is usually determined by the early adopters. Roll on March 2017.


I look forward to getting Ross Brawns book for Christmas. Star signing he made while at Merc has to be Aldo Costa….look how his cars have dominated. Ferrari must be seething. He got fired by the Scuderia for consistently nagging LDM for a new wind tunnel, and investment generally.


Someone on a blog mentioned that the Ross Brawn book is on sale in the UK high street book chain ‘The Works’ for £6. That was a good tip and I got mine yesterday though I had to ask in the shop as the pile was hidden – not a big seller for them I would think!


I have always liked Ross Brawn, he deserves all the praise he gets. I just read his book with Adam Parr which while a bit heavy on philosophy was still a good read. Through the press he is starting to come off as an ex coach from the grandstands. Unless he is directly involved in some aspect of the sport and affecting real change, his comments ring a bit hollow as wishful thinking or arm chair managing. Its not his fault, he gets asked questions and he answers. I find it a shame that someone so clever and full of common sense is not more directly involved. Perhaps these qualities are the reason he isn’t.


It’s great to get a glimpse of how such a great strategist and planner goes about the task of laying the foundations for future success. Just reminds me that I must buy his book as a Christmas present to myself – I wonder, perhaps whether that was the great strategist’s intention in giving interviews 🙂


The Works are selling the book off at £6 a pop already. Not as good a read as expected.


There are many that would argue Brawn is actually the best politician ever in F1. He stretched things at Ferrari at a time when it had been over 20 years since they had won and he knew F1 wanted Ferrari good again. He REALLY pushed it at Brawn but it was the year the other teams were doing a bit of plotting that bothered the powers that be so they sided with Brawn on the double diffuser which was supposed to be a no go.


Taking into the account what we’ve got from Ross, who had prepared a WDC car for Lewis in 2014 ???


Aldo, Ross and MS ???


Clearly in the sport only for the money – never for the honor!


This grinds my gears beyond belief! The guy who won a championship by intentionally obstructing the rules and somehow possessing the political power to win the legal case! There never ever existed a single shred of doubt about the very INTENTION of the rule, yet the wording itself was exploited and the entire 2009 season obliterated and not worth following for one second! Simply disgusting – that’s all there is to say!


you do realise Brawn was the one that tried to close the starter motor hole loophole? Or actually you don’t know what you are talking about.


Nice of Ross! Basically what he is saying is when all the pundits were writing and screaming that there were too many captains on the ship (i.e. all the senior engineering being recruited while track performance was really bad), he knew what he was doing. Strategically planning success!

Well good luck Toto for 2017, now time to demonstrate whether you were strategic planning all the time as well… or just holding the ship together with out a SP.


Great article James and always great to read from people like Ross Brawn who have had great success stories in F1. Thanks


always fresh to hear from brawn but not so fresh to hear from todt yet they shared those successful years at ferrari.


Just goes to show how much goes on in the background in F1. I wonder how much “rule shaping” is allowed by Charlie Whiting. I hadn’t realised Mosley’s team numbers restriction, which cost hundreds their jobs, didn’t last for long once he’d gone. Hasn’t the current Mercedes team got 1,000+ people working at Brackley?


Wasn’t there a controverse with the double diffusor. A team asking if it would be allowed before Brawn but was told no?
Later it was said that the question was not precise enough.

When i controlled math tests at university as an assistant we were told that everyone should share same informations. So if a question in the test could be interpreted in different ways we had to write the information we gave to a student on the blackboard so all could read it.
So as soon as FIA did a more precise interpretation of the rules every other team has to be informed right away -with internet in less than a second?


More evidence to not exactly have confidence in Merc for next year.


Actually it gives one more confidence that Mercedes are way ahead.
Just hope Ferrari and Mclaren and Force India are in the mix to ruin Red Bull. Give a chance to see Red Bull suffer with their TAG named Renault engine.


Evidence in MB success as they seem to have a head start but who knows?


they only bought into their f1 team in 2010. ferrari have a head start. where are they?


FreakyWildwood muttering as usual Twitch 😄


Brawn states “people talk about the engines now” without listening to what the ‘people’ are saying about them… that they’re to expensive, too complicated, too unfair, too quiet’.
The people aren’t saying anything positive about them.

Interesting insights, but i found that comment from him rather concerning, especially considering that many are calling for him to play a part in running the sport.


Engines are an integral part of racing they make the cars move. What would you prefer a clockwork car?


nah, I want V10’s


the teams prefer v6s, the most technologically advanced sport deserves the most technologically advanced engine. not done low tech low efficiency noisey junk.


One positive on the engines is the turbo in a place at altitude like Mexico. The cars are just as fast with a pretty high speed being clocked there by Bottas.

With that being said batteries are heavy. I don’t see a future for hybrid cars for the public but turbos can in theory be of use there or pure battery powered cars but I see hybid cars declining in sales.

Mercedes should maintain an advantage as they still seem to have an early start. Renault may be overlooked here as they have had all of 2016 to work on a 2017 car. I think their 2016 car was put together in 2 weeks.

Force India had some good ideas on rule changes but any smaller teams always get vetoed. So if things keep going as they are even Red Bull is under threat by this.

McLaren is the only one that may be able to compete with a factory team until Honda becomes a full blown manufacturer.

The engine rules are in need of changing IMO to have nothing to do with what a car company wants but what is needed for a race car.

Car manufacturers can just start racing with autonomous vehicles and stay clear of F1 if they have to somehow tie that to road cars so companies like Ilmor can build engines again.


Agree 100%. It’s becoming increasingly clearer that f1 is now at a cross roads. It can go down the “road relevance” path and dilute itself beyond all recognition, or it can focus itself like a laser beam to become pure spectacle, a bit of escapism from the boring and mundane.


is this more f1 than we have now? get rid of those glasses please.

here are your low tech undiluted f1 cars at their best. are they anything near as exciting as what we have now?


@avelli. I really don’t get what you are driving at by showing me footage of Schumacher carving into coulthards lead and then making contact with him. If that’s not exciting to you, I don’t know what is.

As I recall, newspapers and Motorsport publications couldn’t get enough of this incident and the resulting fallout. This is the stuff that has been making f1 great since the Prost/Senna era.


my point is, the most exciting incidents of that era are nowhere near as exciting as those of today. hamilton and rosberg duelling in the desert, verstappen cutting through the field in brazil, rosberg throwing his hat at hamilton, alonso’s crash into gutierrez, to name a few. plus those car don’t look anything as exciting as the current cars.
not many would be interested in that schumacher crash if it happen today but you’re right, i also couldn’t get enough of it at the time but things have moved on to another level now.


Spot on


That Rosa Breen talks a lot of good sense


Talk about extremes
One side you have Mercedes mega bucks and I’m glad it paid off. On the other you have Manor a ram shackled garage spit of a team slowly sinking in its own mire.
I assume Brawn has had a wry smile regarding Paddy going from Mercedes.

Sir Henry Rawlinson

Ross knows the business of F! at least as well as anyone else. The subtext to planning far enough ahead is a guaranteed income stream. Due in large part to the uneven distribution of F1 prize money, and the lack of sponsors in the current economic climate, who (apart from the manufacturer’s works teams and Red Bull) can afford to plan far enough ahead and spend as required to move up the grid. After their progress this year the current plight of Manor proves the point. Liberty need to take a long hard look at the financial structure of F1 for the good of the sport. How exciting would it be to have 10 teams competing with an equal chance of winning?


starting early has no unique advantage in f1. it has exactly the same effect in any scenario, sport, business or hobby. nothing special about that..


Do you disagree with everyone who comments on this site. You must be a nightmare down the pub.


i don’t disagree with everyone.
no one on here go to pubs that i go to so it’s always sweet dreams for all.


All I want for Christmas is………………….a Brawn GBP 001.

Even after nearly 8 years, it still looks classy, fresh, clean, elegant. Like Jenson Button’s driving technique, the Brawn has a smoothness, leanness and tightness that is both pleasing to the eye and to the timing screens.


jake humphrey didn’t think button’s driving wa smooth by any means, immediately after going for a ride in a car driven by button at race speeds.


As others have pointed out, the success of this outfit was supported by the ground work RB laid after making it clear to the BoD where the attention was needed and what it took to get there. Well done and a model worth following, eh?


you know that does make sense. what kind of ground did he work on?
he simply asked mercedes to vomit more money to the f1 project and they did. is that all? redbull ferrari and mclaren had invested a lot more previously and in resent season yet they didn’t win!
it’s been over 3 seasons since he went fishing and they are still winning. i promise you f1 has moved on in spades. all his tricks will have little or no effect on the performance of any f1 team. f1 evolves. he said he left because he couldn’t trust wolff, not because he no longer enjoyed his job. anyone who’s confident in their abilities trust their employers to keep renewing their contract indefinitely. you only lose confidence and jump before you’re pushed when there are many others who can do the same job better.


Love him or hate him, the man knows what he’s talking about.
Read in another article that Ross believes the PU”s need to be looked at again after 2020.


i think he’s simply reminding them that if they want to get rid of the v6 engines, they’ve got to start discussing it now rather than later. if they don’t start discussing it now, they’ll run out of time to do anything about it come the end of the 2020 season.


They need to ditch all those heavy batteries and energy regeneration nonsense and get f1 to a proper f1 weight of about 500 kilograms. The v10s or even v8s will do just fine, and they will sound much better.


I agree. Heavy battery hybrids will never compete with light straight ICE powered cars. Take off all the restrictions on Gasoline Power Engines- let the hybrids run against them- & they would dominate in every category- F1, Lemans, WRC even formula E. We have to bring F1 back to being the pinnacle of motorsport. F1 should not be some Green Propaganda machine. P.S. hybrids & Teslas are not good for the environment, stop hallucinating


Harking back to V10 & V8 engines is never going to happen, anymore than “energy regeneration” is going to disappear anytime soon. Time to accept the things you cannot change?


@Andy Warhol, I may not be able to change it, but there are those who do have the power to change it, we just need to give them the motivation to do so.

At the end of the day there is nothing about these PUs that makes them particularly special and absolutely indispensable to F1. On the contrary, a number of very sound arguments can be made that they are not right for F1.


how about the combustion technology? does that not affect the sound?


Yep, it’s the weight that’s the killer. Cumbersome springs to mind.


@NickH, I find it curious that no one really is making a fuss about this ridiculous weight situation. I mean the cars are now almost 300 kilograms heavier than they were in the early 90s. I mean this is indycar territory now, not F1.

Does this sound like progress to you?


the weight doesn’t matter as long as all the cars meet the specifications.
hybrid technology is the future and you have to get used to it.


“the weight doesn’t matter”…
… Colin Chapman would have disagreed with that fairly strongly 🙂


The weight is everything.


couldn’t disagree more with those two sentences. Isaac Newton would argue with the first, and Elon Musk the second. Hybrid is a terrible, stopgap solution.


here is footage of the most exciting races of lighter low tech cars. is this more exciting than than what we enjoyed over the 2016 season?


Yes, the 1998 season was much more exciting than the 2016 season.


MODERATORS: please note I will not comment on this site if I continue to get unmoderated replies sent to my email inbox.


here are less heavier cars, 1is this more exciting than we have now?–8DsSI


Whaaaat? Weight doesn’t matter now? Car designers, racing car designers in particular, have been racking their brains to make cars lighter for as long as there have been cars, and now suddenly none of this matters? And why? Beacause somebody has said that hybrid is the future?

F1 has always been about small, light, nimble cars, because that’s what you need if you’re going to be the pinnacle of racing on tracks that have corners.

Therefore I don’t feel that I have to get used to it, especially given that f1 is supposed to be entertainment first and foremost.

To put it in even simpler terms, I don’t feel like spending thousands of dollars to go to an f1 race to then have to get used to it.


what are you talking about? if the weight was so important to the show, can you please explain why the current heavier cars present a much more exciting show than the lighter cars of the past?–8DsSI


That depends on how you define exciting. If lots of DRS assisted passes are your idea of exciting then yes the current cars present are much more exciting show.

However, you’re conflating things here and in the process obfuscating the issue unnecessarily, probably to make your argument seem sound.

In effect you are saying that lighteness, agility, precise, knife-edged handling and sheer performance don’t matter anymore, but fuel saving does. Let that sink in for a while. A racing category whose very appeal has always stemmed from its sheer, out of this world performance has had its main appeal compromised in the name of fuel saving.

furthermore, if excitement is your criterion here, then please explain how these hybrids are more exciting than the v10s. What have they added to the spectacle of F1 and why are there so many fans practically begging to have the v10′ even v8s back?


They look cumbersome and slow in corners. They are only fast in a straight line. Your idol Hamilton has said as much that the cars are too heavy with not enough grip. Pay attention.


Whenever I put on a re-run of f1 from the early 2000s I’m blown away by the sheer performance. It’s palpable, you can see it in about 5 seconds.

Then I put on something from the hybrid era and I feel as though I’m watching a Sunday afternoon drive. I do not get a kick out of watching f1 drivers struggling to get a wallowing pig through the corners and tip-toeing as if it’s wet.

The 2017 regs will rectify that situation to some extent, but there is also no doubt that these cars are too heavy (they are heavier than indycars, for goodness sake, and f1 has always prided itself on having the lighter more nimble cars) and this is something that needs to be addressed when looking at power units for 2020 and beyond.


you are already used to f1. you don’t need to attend a race to get used to it lukec.
as f1 fans we watch cars competing on track. we do not feel the weight of the cars. we are informed of how technology has improved the aerodynamic, suspension and fuel efficiency of the cars. we are proud of the fact that f1 cars are the most technologically advanced cars on the planet, driven by the best 22 drivers in the world. if you’re upset by hamilton’s victories, respectfully say so. there is no need pretending to be upset over obscure matters remotely associated with admiring cars compete on track.


@aveli, in all honesty I would be stretching the truth if I said that I am used to these hybrids. I’m trying to get used to the sound, I’m trying to wrap my head around the fuel saving ideology, and I’m trying to accept that so much braking, cornering and acceleration performance had to be sacrificed for the sake of some pseudo green agenda.

For the moment let’s forget about all those marketing buzz words like “technologically advanced”, “road relevant” and let’s look at selection criteria for engines for f1.

1. Engines that will give us light, agile, compliant, super fast, dramatic, spectacular f1 cars at a low cost.


2. Expensive, complex PUs that will give us big, bloated, overweight cars and which will save a bit of fuel.

Which one of these criteria do you thuink is more F1. If it’s number one, then v10s is the answer, if number two then hybrids are perfect.

BTW, I actually like Hamilton, but I’m not a fan of situations where there is a lot of disparity between cars and where one team is so dominant as to be virtually untouchable.


i can’t remember exactly what happened back over the 2009 season but what i do know is that brawn didn’t win another race after the big teams installed their double diffusers.
the double diffuser idea was borne by super aguri engineers.
other teams presented the double diffuser idea to the regulators and were told it was illegal only for brawn to be allowed to race it.
from the above points, starting early made minimal contributions to their success.
secondly there are numerous up to speed other technical directors up and down the putlane who are fully aware on the optimum approaches. the ferret technical approaches are significantly different from those of the days of brawn, f1 evolves continuously.


So it was that boardroom meeting and step up in resources which paved the way for the dominant cars of the last 3 years. I thought you said it was Hamilton’s instructions on how to build the cars?


whatever happened to your logic?
ferrari redbull and mclaren all spent more money on their f1 project than mercedes. the only ingredient they all lacked was hamilton.


From what I remember it was Brawn, Toyota and Williams that came up with the idea incorporating the hole for the starter to be inserted which was the technicality that allowed them to get away with it. After it became blatantly obvious what was happening I think they allowed teams to get away with more obvious ideas.

You have to remember with Brawn, due to lack of resources they didn’t really develop the car much through the season which I think was the main contributor to their slipping back. By the end of the season Red Bull and Mclaren were quicker than them, Mclaren’s rate of development that year was ferocious!


I think fundamentally, the success of that car was not because they stumbled on some single trick that no-one else had; it was because of the amount of money that was spent on developing it. The most expensive car in history reputedly, with up to 1bn of Honda’s dollars in it. (Great foresight by Button to get a clause in his contract allowing him to keep one!)

The underlying reason for the decline later in the season was the same, money. No money to develop the car while others made progress. And this is also reflected in Brawn’s comments here about Mercedes. Spend a modest amount of money, no success. Spend money, success.


Success is a function of money, company structure, philosophy (vision+mission)…


toyota and williams spent a lot of money throughout the season and were no where near brawn by season end.


how could all their performance advantage evaporate as soon as the top teams bolted on their double diffusers and you claim is was lack of development throughout the season?
it was nothing but the double diffuser without which, the top teams had no hope of catching them. with the double diffuser, all the top teams surpassed them.
how many months of research did the dedicate to researching how best to bolt that mercedes engine in the back of that car?


“Spend money, success”

Toyota might disagree…


Williams and Toyota also started the season with double diffusers if I recall correctly. If any other teams thought of the idea and had it turned down, then they must not have come up with the right rule-beating interpretation.


williams and toyota also spent millions throughout the season developing their car and yet brawn was ahead of them by season end.


williams and toyota’s double diffusers weren’t as dramatic as the brawns at the start of the season. the williams and toyota car were inferior to the brawn at all levels any way. all the top teams were instantly ahead of the brawn as soon as they bolted on their double diffuser. it cannot be more scientific than that..


Your story is almost right.. for the complete story look here:


It’s hard to argue with a man who has won a constructor’s championship with his name on the car.


Yeah I mean it’s not like that’s ever really happened before…well, except maybe for Alfa Romeo, Maserati, Ferrari, Mercedes-Benz, Cooper, Brabham, Tyrrell, McLaren, Williams, Renault, Benetton, and umm, who else, oh yeah Brawn 🙂 lol 🙂

But seriously though, it’s hard to argue with a man with his track record


It’s an elite group, to be sure. The full list by my reckoning would be: John Cooper, Enzo Ferrari, Jack Brabham*, Ken Tyrell, Frank Williams, Ross Brawn. You could also argue a case for Tony Vandervell/Vanwall. Jack Brabham gets a star because he drove the car as well (to both titles). Sadly Bruce McLaren didn’t live to see his team win any of its many titles.



It’s a trivial thing, but does anyone else reckon that the Brawn was one of the best looking of the 2009 spec cars?


No, quite the contrary actually. If compared to the B-spec RB5 or the following year’s RB6 (one of the best looking cars of modern F1) the thing looks clumsy, blunt, slow, and cobbled together (because it was, it was originally designed around the Honda engine and they had to completely re-do the back half of the car last minute to work in the Mercedes engine).

This crude design really showed in the second 2/3 of the season. Button never saw the top step of the podium after the midpoint of the season, and the Brawn car only won 2 of the last 10 races that season.

The Brawn was by all accounts slower than most of the other cars once they adopted their own version of the double difuser, but as Ross points out above, there is no replacement for a head start.



You’re talking performance whereas I’m talking pure aesthetics.

As far as performance goes, it might look clumsy, blunt, slow, and cobbled together but it clearly wasn’t any of those things. Even if it did have to fit a Merc at the last minute it was the fastest thing out of the gates (although it was of course slower than the competition by the end of the season).

As for aesthetics, all I can say about Red Bull is it might have been fast under the 2009- regs, but (until this season at least) the livery was virtually unchanging and dull as dishwater.

That’s why I like the Brawn – Sure it was rushed, sure the livery was simple, and sure it lacked sponsors at first, but you simply could not mistake the thing for anything else 🙂


The period between 2009-2016 will go down in history as the period that produced the ugliest f1 cars of the modern era. The most beautiful cars were between the late 80s until 1998, which is what they had in mind when writing the regulations for 2017 and beyond.


“2009-2016 will go down in history as the period that produced the ugliest f1 cars of the modern era.”

Yeah, I’ll agree with that, but given it had to be ugly I still think that the Brawn did the ugly nicely, and I’d also take a page from Elie’s book and include the Vodafone McLarens (particularly their 2012 effort 🙂 )

Strange that you capped the most beautiful cars at 1998. My memory’s a little fuzzy – What changed significantly between ’98 and ’99 (or even the early 2000s)?


@Random79. I disagree that they had to be ugly. The regulations introduced in 2009 were not informed and shaped by extensive investigation into aero effects on cars. In fact, it might be more accurate to say that they were shaped by a number of intuitive guesses, which ultimately turned out to be wrong.

To this day, they have no idea how to make the cars less aero sensitive to facilitate closer racing. If indeed such a feat is even possible. This is according to Pat Symmonds. So in a way it was inevitable that the regs would revert to more or less what we had in the 1990s.

As for why I capped the beautiful cars at 1998. I don’t find the era between 1998 and 2009 to be particularly ugly, but I feel that the proportions were not quite as nice due to the narrower track, and with all the aero devices jutting out of the chassis, some of the sleekness was lost.

Still, the jet fighter on wheels f1 car of 2008 is infinitely more beautiful than anything we’ve had so far since the 2009 regulations came into effect.


It looked very well balanced all round & the simple livery (bare) only added to that. A bIt like a pair of Volleys. Whilst advertising and certain colours are absolutely vital to teams & sponsors, in most cases they spoil the lines/look of the cars. The Lotus cars were simply awesome because they were black with gold signage only. IMO the Mclaren was the best looking chassis in 2009 !( it probably would have won with the blown diffuser in earlier)- it was closest in speed to Brawns till RBR changed their chassis.

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