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Howarth (AMR): The WEC’s New Pit Rules “Will Take A Bit Of The Spectacle Away”

Paul Howarth admits he's disappointed in the new rules for the 'Super Season'

Aston Martin Racing team principal Paul Howarth has admitted to DSC that he feels the new pit stop regulations for the FIA WEC’s upcoming 2018/19 ‘Super Season’ will remove some of the spectacle during races.

For the new season, the teams and drivers will be able to change tyres while re-fuelling, negating any advantages from adding stints to tyres to gain track position. It will also prevent teams from being able to gain chunks of time from quick tyre changes.

According to the FIA WEC, the change has been made, not on safety grounds, but because the championship, which is a pioneer of technology and speed, has the slowest stops of all the major motorsport series.

“The old system had a sporting aspect to it,” Howarth told DSC. “It was heavily regulation controlled, and it was very easy to get an infringement over the last two years, with the sequence of people, people standing behind the lines etc. The new way will take a bit of spectacle away from the sport.

“We need to think of another way to get any sort of advantages time wise outside of performance in the cars.

“I think everyone will be to the second with pit stops. You’ve got a controlled fuel time, a controlled tyre change time, everything is controlled. I love variables, and I haven’t seen an opportunity for that with the new system.

“I think it was a spectacle in the pit lane. If you want to see a quick pit stop, or a six second stop, click onto Formula One or DTM. I thought the old way was a sporting opportunity, which gave the people in the garages of each time a chance to really help out. It got quite competitive.

“Clearly though, they want all the racing on the circuit, and not in the pit lane.”