Recently, FIA launched another set of new rules in Formula One to be followed from 2023. The Aerodynamics Oscillation Metric (AOM) is the new launch to relieve the teams facing porpoising issues this year. Meanwhile, many started questioning FIA why they made new regulations for just a little problem. Several teams have always faced problems with their cars, but the FIA never changed the rules for them. Why this time? Because Mercedes and Lewis Hamilton were involved in the list of the teams with porpoising issues, FIA \”overreacted\”? Pat Symonds, the F1 chief technical officer, believes so!
This year, everyone in the world knew that team Mercedes produced a weak car. W13 was not only bouncing but was proved to be dangerous too. Apparently, the main reason why Mercedes failed this year was the new rules for the ground floor launched by FIA in 2022 for the first time. The team just failed to adapt to the changes while the rivals mastered them in doing so. As a result, Lewis Hamilton was once again defeated by Max Verstappen.
The first porpoising issue faced by the seven-time world champion was in the Azerbaijan Grand Prix of the 2022 season. W13 was so bouncy on the track that Hamilton named the race the most hurtful race of his career. Meanwhile, this issue of the car became a matter of health concern in Formula One. FIA got afraid of an even worse scenario and thus soon decided to make a strategy that would stop the cars from being bouncy to having porpoising problems, and launched the new rules for next year. This rule will definitely help Mercedes in making a strong issue-less W14.
The Porpoising Issues Became Visible To FIA After Mercedes Faced It
However, this action of FIA is being criticized by Symonds. He believed FIA just overreacted to the matter. There was no such need to introduce the AOM for next season. In an interview with Auto Motor und Sport, the F1 chief technician said, \”FIA overreacted a bit after the incidence of Baku [Lewis hamilton\’s first porpoising experience]. There we saw the worst effect of because a team [Mercedes] tried something which failed which later went public quite vociferously.\”
However, the technical officer explained that if people hadn\’t intervened in the porpoising issue, the problems would have been solved as well. Now many teams understand how to control bouncing issues of the car. Earlier, these issues were unforeseen. Symonds admitted, \”It was not on our radar. Though, F1 should always have had it. The sports had the means to discover it [the problems] in advance because the team was working with dynamic simulations.\” The officer revealed that they had to use them as examples to see the result of what happens when a car spins and gets underinflated.
In addition, he reminded the reporter of the accident that almost took Mark Webber\’s life in Valencia. He claimed that special software is needed to remove the porpoising and bouncing issues of the cars. And this is what they have used to anticipate and understand the situation.