Absentees force delays to 2017 F1 rules vote

The Strategy Group and F1 Commission met at Biggin Hill hoping to sign off a raft of changes to the regulations aimed at making cars faster and mapping out engine rules to bring costs down and performance closer.

On the car front, the situation was clear, with the radical overhaul of cars to make them up to five seconds per lap faster now going ahead after a push from some quarters to backtrack on the changes failing to get enough support.

In what was viewed as the last chance for F1 to abandon the changes – something Mercedes in particular was keen to happen – there was no momentum behind abandoning the rules.

It means that the scheme for wider and bigger cars, which had been agreed and put in regulations earlier this year, will now push on unchanged, as there is no move to alter the rules.

However, the meetings of the Strategy Group and F1 Commission did not result in a final approval of tweaks to the engine rules to reduce costs and level the playing field.

For while there was majority approval at the Strategy Group for a two-year plan that will bring down costs by reducing engines to just three per year, close up performance and guarantee supply to all teams, the matter stalled at the F1 Commission.

Motorsport.com has learned that a formal vote to approve the changes to the engine regulations could not go ahead because not enough members of the F1 Commission – made up of FOM, FIA, teams, sponsors and promoters – were present to formally sign matters off.

It is believed absentees included promoters who could not travel to the meeting.

Instead an e-vote will take place over the next few days to decide if the manufacturers engine plan – and other changes like an increase in the maximum fuel limit – will go ahead.

It is hoped the e-vote can be completed by the end of this week.