FIA confirm changes to regulations for 2014

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The FIA has today confirmed the changes that will be made to the sporting and technical regulations for next season as part of its constant improvement of the sport.

One of the biggest rule changes is that from next season there will be a penalty points system where drivers will receive points on their license for any infringements. These will range from one to three (depending on the action in question), and they remain on a license for 12 months. Should a driver pick up twelve points, they will be subject to an immediate one-race ban.

In the wake of tiregate, changes have also been made to the testing procedure. There will be four two-day test events across the course of the season, held on the Tuesday and Wednesday following a European grand prix in order to minimize the cost of moving from place to place. Also, testing is now permitted in January in order to allow teams to work with the new V6 engines, suggesting that there will indeed be four tests in the 2014 pre-season.

Drivers will also be given an extra set of tires to use during the first 30 minutes of Free Practice 1, encouraging teams to send their drivers out early on and increasing the on-track action for the fans. Gearboxes will be required to last six races next season, up from five in 2013.

Click here for a complete list of the changes to the regulations.

MRTI: Keith Donegan earns Mazda Shootout Scholarship

Photo: Indianapolis Motor Speedway, LLC Photography
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Dublin, Ireland’s Keith Donegan claimed a $200K scholarship from Mazda after emerging victorious at the second annual Mazda Road to Indy Shootout. The 20-year-old Donegan earned an at-large nomination for the scholarship based on his performance at this year’s Formula Ford Festival, in which he finished second in the final, and emerged from a pack of 17 drivers from across the globe to claim the scholarship.

“It really hasn’t hit me yet,” said an emotional Donegan, who earlier in his career actually spent two years away from racing as he focused on academics. “The weekend was really good and I enjoyed it. I have to say a huge thanks to Mazda and Cooper Tires and everyone at the Mazda Road to Indy. I enjoyed every moment. Throughout the weekend we were consistent and I kept the small things in check. I didn’t make any stupid mistakes and kept my head cool and that really paid off in the end.”

The two-day shootout was held at the Bondurant Racing School in Arizona and saw the nominated drivers tackle the school’s 1.6-mile circuit in Formula Mazda race cars before facing on and off-track assessments. Donegan was selected by a panel of judges that included former driver and current Verizon IndyCar Series TV analyst Scott Goodyear, Mazda drivers Tom Long, Andrew Carbonell, and Jonathan Bomarito, as well as Victor Franzoni – the current champion of the Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires – and Oliver Askew, the current champion of the Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship Powered by Mazda.

Donegan was humbled to be in the presence of drivers who have won scholarships and championships previously, and added that he is grateful to have the opportunity to continue his racing career.

“You see all these champions here today that will go on to great things in the future and I’m sure the names you see here today aren’t going to disappear,” Donegan added. “They will be back up there and I’m sure I will be racing them again some day. It is an unbelievable opportunity to be given and for Mazda to provide that for any young driver. It just gives that bit of motivation that you need because the [U.S.] is where you need to go to become a professional these days. It is such a boost to my career.”

Donegan is now slated to join the 2018 USF2000 championship, with further announcements regarding the team with whom he’ll be racing to come in the future.

Follow @KyleMLavigne