Formula 1 drivers have the DRS (Drag Reduction System) system in their single-seaters to automatically increase the car's top speed when overtaking.
If the driver in the race activates the DRS the rear wing rises, then the downforce of the car decreases and adds up to 20 km/h extra speed. This is how Fernando Alonso demonstrated his use with his Aston Martin at the 2023 Bahrain Grand Prix.
The Drag Reduction System (DRS) in Formula 1 was introduced in the 2011 season. At each grand prix, the race management defines the points on the circuit where the use of this technology is allowed.
For security reasons it is limited to two or three areas of the route. It is usually authorized on long straights or very open curves.
The DRS is especially effective on circuits like Barcelona or Bahrain, where there is a lot of downforce. On the other hand, it has less effect on tracks where higher average speeds are reached, such as in Monza (Italy).
The driver receives a signal on his steering wheel from the race direction that authorizes him to activate the DSR when the following conditions are met:
DRS is deactivated when the driver steps on the brake pedal.
DRS technology is applied in Formula 1 and other touring car competitions, such as the DTM, to facilitate greater spectacle in motor racing.
Season after season, Formula 1 single-seaters are faster, but they also generate dirtier air in their wake that slows down the number of overtaking on the track.
The trail left by the Formula 1 cars also causes greater wear on the tires of the vehicles behind and a loss of time when it comes to lapping other fellow racers.
DRS technology has as many supporters as it does detractors within the motorsport family. The most purists, contrary to its use, believe that overtaking is automated too much. "The art of overtaking is being lost little by little", the most veteran fans highlight when they see that overtaking almost always happens on straight lines where the sporting risk is minimized.
On the other hand, the FIA approved last year to study that the use of the DRS is applied only one lap after the start of the restarted race or after the removal of the safety car. This measure will be implemented in the 2023 qualifiers and its entry into force could take place in the 2024 season.
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