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GPDA tried to derail 2017 chassis changes


Formula 1 News - April, 2016

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Apr.29 (GMM) The drivers' representative body, the GPDA, made a bid to derail the new chassis regulations that will be introduced in 2017.

Several drivers have argued that speeding up the cars next year by adding downforce is not the right move for F1.

"Just like with the new qualifying, you hope the engineers who know what is going to happen are proven wrong," said reigning world champion Lewis Hamilton.

The Mercedes driver has argued repeatedly that the 2017 changes could actually make overtaking - what the fans really want - more difficult.

So GPDA director Jenson Button on Thursday revealed that a letter from the body was sent to the F1 Commission earlier this week.

"Jean (Todt) asked us to comment on the direction of the sport so we wrote a letter which was read at Tuesday's meeting," said the McLaren-Honda driver.

The F1 Commission, however, is believed to have pressed ahead with the 2017 changes anyway.

But not everyone is concerned that the 2017 changes are necessarily wrong for F1.

Fernando Alonso, for instance, argues that all the worrying about overtaking might be misplaced, as some of the most memorable races in F1 preceded the heavily-degrading Pirelli tyres and 'DRS' era.

"First we need to wait for the final version of the rules," said the Spaniard, "but I think the direction is correct. The cars will be faster and they will look better.

"I remember the races at Imola in 2005 and 2006, my fights with Michael (Schumacher) -- there were two or three overtakes the entire race, but the fans witnessed a fascinating spectacle," he said.

"That's why I think not so much attention should be paid to overtaking," Alonso added.

"Now, it is possible for someone in 16th or 17th place to put a fresh set of tyres on at the right moment and overtake a Mercedes. I think that's hard to understand for the audience. Overtaking has ceased to be real, as it was in the past.

"To make an exciting show, the cars should be faster and louder and more drivers should be in the fight for the title," he said.

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