brake

What is the penalty for brake checking in F1?

There are break-checking penalties for all vehicles. But this particular penalty is more associated with auto racing.

Break checking is punishable in f1 because it is an act of suddenly slamming the break. Let’s learn why is break checking illegal and the penalty for brake checking in F1 engines.

What is an F1 or F1 engine?

F1 engines are also known as Formula 1 engines. These cars are specially built for the formula 1 racing contest – an international car racing competition.

Similarly, the car used in that competition is known as the F1 car.

Penalty for brake checking in F1

Clearly, break-checking during the race is an unsafe practice as there will be cars behind you. So, when you hit break abruptly, the driver behind you won’t be prepared for it. And it will result in rear-end collision.

The law falls under the FIA Sporting Regulations. Well, they might explicitly state it. But brake checking is unquestionably erratic and possibly dangerous. A driver doing this would be black-flagged.

Besides, Formula 1 drivers have already put their lives in jeopardy. Hence they wouldn’t stand for someone purposefully exacerbating the situation.

The FIA Sporting Regulations dictates – at no time shall a car be driven slowly, unpredictably, or in a way which could be potentially dangerous to other drivers or any other person.

If found guilty, the driver will receive points on his license, as well as severe consequences in the next race. Overall, in Formula 1, brake testing is considered reckless, and stewards do not tolerate cars slowing down on the track for no apparent reason.

More rules for F1 Engines

The engines of these small cars have a limit. Yet, people will force the engine to perform better. It’s not like the engine can do more than its ability. But, people put pressure on the engine to get the optimum power and best result in a race.

However, one might test the break both intentionally or unintentionally. During a racing season, there are restrictions on using components. You will be charged if any driver doesn’t conform to that rule.

Nevertheless, the violation of F1 engine rules is a crime in most parts of the world. That means this violation and penalty don’t apply in some places.

How does the F1 engine penalty work?

To elaborate on the penalties, you need to know a little bit more about F1 engines.

The current F1 cars contain 6 major parts- 

  • combustion engine
  • energy store
  • turbocharger
  • control electronics
  • two motor generator units (unit-heat (MGU-H)
  • unit-kinetic (MGU-K).

The main idea of the F1 penalty

If a driver uses more engine components than they are permitted to, they will be liable for a penalty. Additionally, F1 drivers are allowed to use a maximum of 3 engine components. 

Consequently, when a driver engages more than 3 components, they will get a grid penalty. And the penalty will be applicable for the next race. Note that there are different kinds of a grid penalties.

Different kinds of penalties for F1 cars

F1 engine penalties work by penalizing a driver by ten places on the grid for the race in which they use their first additional engine component. Every other engine component that exceeds the season’s limit for that component will result in a 5-second penalty for the driver.

In Formula 1, the engine penalty rule can be a little perplexing. This is because Formula 1 cars use “power units,” which are made up of six different elements.

Each of these components can be replaced individually. A driver, for example, could keep their ICE and hybrid systems but replace the turbocharger. 

According to the FIA, only three of these elements can be used during a 20+ race season. But except for the energy store and control electronics, both are limited to two per season. Exhaust systems are also limited to eight per season for drivers.

A driver will receive a 10-second penalty if they use a fourth power unit element for the entire season.

Every other power unit element changed during the same race weekend earns the driver a five-place grid penalty.

Final notes

The popularity of the Formula One race is high. But the rules are also strict. So, the discussion concludes everything you need to know about F1 engine penalties. I hope now you have a clear idea about the safety rules regarding braking in F1

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Christophe Rude

Christophe Rude

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