Formula One may apply brakes to slow cornering speeds

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The Independent Online

The world governing body of Formula One is flexing its muscles in an effort to slow cars down this season, after Max Mosley, the president of the FIA, expressed concerns yesterday about the rise in cornering speeds this season.

The world governing body of Formula One is flexing its muscles in an effort to slow cars down this season, after Max Mosley, the president of the FIA, expressed concerns yesterday about the rise in cornering speeds this season.

"We are looking very carefully at possibly using powers that we have under the Concorde Agreement to reduce the performance of the cars," Mosley said, referring to the confidential document by which the sport is governed.

"If we conclude that the cars are too fast, then we can give notice to the teams under the Concorde Agreement which requires the technical working group to come up with proposals for slowing the cars." Mosley said that could happen before the end of the season.

Lap times have accelerated considerably this year, with Ferrari's Michael Schumacher qualifying on pole for the Malaysian Grand Prix a massive four seconds quicker than the best time set by the Spaniard Fernando Alonso in a Renault in 2003. This is partly because late rule changes in 2003 caught the teams out; one year on, they have found ways to improve their cars further.

Renault's Jarno Trulli was one of several Formula One drivers who called at the Malaysian Grand Prix for something to be done about speeds. "Normally as racing drivers we are happy to go faster but now the cars are too fast," he said. "It's something that the technical people have to sort out."

However, Ferrari's technical director, Ross Brawn, said that he did not see how changes could be made before 2006. "There is a fairly major change coming in the design of the cars then to reduce the speeds," he pointed out.

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