Looking ahead to 2017-2018
The FIM (International Motorcycling Federation) and FIM EWC promoter Eurosport Events met with the teams competing in the FIM EWC during the 8 Hours of Slovakia Ring to outline proposed changes to the FIM EWC 2017-2018 regulations.
The proposals discussed with the teams in Slovakia will be submitted to the FIM’s Circuit Racing Commission for approval at the commission’s next meeting.
Team and rider safety
Use of helmets in the pit lane
Starting from the Bol d’Or in September 2017, any person present in the pit lane will have to wear a helmet during all tests and races on the track. The helmet – at the very least a certified bicycle helmet – will have to be approved by the FIM’s technical director.
In addition, only accredited team members who are wearing helmets will be granted access to the working area in front of the pit box.
The objective is to limit the number of people in the pit lane and the refuelling areas during tests and the race.
Revised refuelling system
During coverage of fuel stops by the promoter Eurosport Events, we have spotted varying fuel spillages at the end of refuelling. It is imperative that we beef up safety during refuelling to rule out any risk of fire.
A study has been launched to improve refuelling procedures based on three criteria: increased safety, equitable treatment, and reduced cost. The proposal is to amend the refuelling procedure in two stages.
Some measures will be proposed starting 1 January 2018.
Height of portable derricks: The height of portable derricks will be restricted to 1 metre. The aim is to ensure the derrick is stable, for better control of substances during refuelling.
Restricted fuel flow rate: The diameter of the fuel transfer can be no larger than 50.8mm (2 inches) to restrict the fuel flow rate.
The objective is to implement FIM-approved refuelling systems or to launch a call for bids to have a reliable, equitable and cost-effective fuel supply system to be used by all teams in place by the 2019-2020 season.
New sporting regulations
Attribution of the riders’ world championship title
The current regulation as to the attribution of the FIM EWC (rider) world champion title and the winner of the EWC World Cup is not clear enough, as riders can compete as part of different teams in the course of the season. To ensure clear communication and promote the world titles awarded to riders and teams, the proposed change is to award these titles to riders who have committed to racing at least 75% of the season with the FIM EWC World Championship winning team and the FIM World Cup winning team.
15 private teams under contract
Eurosport Events will renew its support to private teams under contract for the 2017-2018 season, which will get underway at the Bol d’Or 2017. All current backing for privateers under contract and for the Dunlop Independent Trophy will be renewed in the 2017-2018 season.
In addition, the top five EWC teams and the top three Superstock teams in the coming season will be given priority as regards the choice of pit box for each race of the following season.
Communication with riders on the track
It has been proposed that riders test HF radio for communication between teams and the riders on the track. This communication system is already being used in car endurance racing and has proved interesting and useful to help commentators and television viewers get a better understanding of race incidents and team strategies.
Testing will start during the winter of 2017-2018 to evaluate how the system can be successfully implemented without affecting rider comfort and safety. If the tests prove conclusive and are approved by the FIM, Eurosport Events will offer to work with teams under contract on a voluntary basis to introduce the communication system during the races.
Other regulatory and race-related measures are currently being discussed by a working group within the CCR, and will supplement the current measures at a later date.