FIA ready to be ‘flexible’ with 2021 homologation

Stance "in the interest" of WRC and stakeholder manufacturers

Suninen M-Sport Mexico

As the World Rally Championship continues to lie dormant through the coronavirus pandemic, the FIA is preparing a more ‘flexible’ approach to certain rules and regulations for the homologation of cars next season.

One of the concerns from the manufacturer teams is the development work being done on cars right now and the implications for 2021.

Currently, as soon as a newly homologated part – implemented via a homologation ‘joker’ – has been installed into a particular chassis, that car cannot be returned to a previous specification.

As the 2021 season will be the fifth and final year of the current cycle of Rally1 machinery, teams are keen to avoid building new cars and would prefer to utilize the existing stock of cars and parts in an effort to contain costs.

FIA rally director Yves Matton has said the governing body was talking to the teams about this situation on a weekly basis and was ready to work together.

“We are asking them all the time: what is the feedback from the top management and the board,” Matton told DirtFish. “We have had an e-vote on jokers last week and we will show flexibility in the interest of the championship for all the stakeholders.

“I think the situation from each manufacturer could be different and when I say [we will be] showing flexibility, it’s only in the interest of the championship and to have all the stakeholders involved in the future.”

Asked if there would be a change of any regulations to accommodate that flexibility next season, Matton added: “It can only be based on a common agreement from the manufacturers and the FIA.

“Things will need to be adapted, but only in the common agreement in the interest of the championship and stakeholders and not in a hurry. The situation is evolving each week and I don’t want that we take decisions that are not based on the latest facts. We want to take decisions based on the exit of this crisis.”