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Bike swaps, cutting the track and penalties

Race Direction clarify penalties for taking shortcuts and flag-to-flag rules if the race should be wet

Bike Swap

On Friday at the British GP, riders and teams trialed a new bike swap procedure for flag-to-flag races. It has been decided that, should the white flag be waved at Silverstone or should the race be declared wet, this new bike swap procedure will be enforced at this event.

Track Cutting

Direction have clarified penalties in instances of riders cutting the track. The key principle is that making a mistake and cutting part of the track should mean the rider loses time.

According to the regulations, riders cutting the track in practice or qualifying sessions will have that lap cancelled. Riders doing the same in the race must be at least a second slower than their slowest normal time in the sector in which the track was cut (ie not on the first lap, or an irregular lap affected by conditions or an incident.) If the sector is not at least a second slower, a time penalty will be imposed. That will be equal to two seconds slower than the rider’s slowest normal time.

In practice, if a sector is only 0.3 seconds slower, a penalty of 1.7 seconds will be imposed. If the sector is 0.6s faster, the penalty becomes 2.6 seconds.

Positions gained by short-cutting the track must be given back immediately.

Cutting the track due to contact in which another rider is at fault will not incur a standard penalty. However,if rider gains time in the subsequent run off, a time penalty will still be applied.

These penalties apply to short-cutting the track, rather than exceeding track limits by going outside the kerbs. Those violations have their own clearly defined penalties.