Rolling starts introduced as temporary fix for stalling

Safety Car, Monza 2017
No more standing starts for the next four races

Formula 2 has announced Safety Car restarts for the current and next rounds in Austria and the United Kingdom.

New problems arose regarding the starting procedure of the Dallara F2 2018. Stalled cars, which have not diminished from the start of the season till now, have actually hit a new peak in the sprint race in France last weekend. Clutch issues have hampered most drivers on the grid, as well as other power unit-related problems (see Maini and Albon at Paul Ricard).

Because F2 is currently at the second of three consecutive race weekends, modifications are difficult to implement to the cars or their software. As a conclusion, following an analysis during today’s practice session, it was decided that from tomorrow’s feature race until at least the British sprint race in nine days’ time, the races will start behind the Safety Car.

The following procedure was described in a press release: “The Safety car will lead the grid at the start of the formation lap, complete one lap and return to the pit lane. During the lap the teams will be informed that there will be a rolling start and ‘RS’ will be displayed on the track light panels. At this point, the lights on the Safety Car will be extinguished and the leader may dictate the pace. The race will start when the first car crosses the line.”

“This is not an ideal situation, but the drivers’ safety is a top priority,” said F2 CEO Bruno Michel. “As we do not have the time to test and properly validate a permanent fix to the starting issues what the FIA has decided is definitely the safest decision.

“This will also give us enough time to work on a solution to the problem and return to a safe and normal situation for Budapest and the remaining of the season.”

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