Formula 1 teams have been told to modify their cars’ rear jacking points following an FIA investigation into Billy Monger’s horrific British Formula 4 accident.
Monger had both his lower legs amputated after a violent impact with the rear of Patrik Pasma’s stationary car during last month’s Donington Park F4 round.
The FIA’s safety director Laurent Mekies sent a note to F1 teams telling them to modify their rear jack points for this weekend’s Monaco Grand Prix, intimating that the design of the jacking point on the car Monger hit may have contributed to the severity of the accident.
The note said the jack points would be inspected by the FIA’s safety department.
Mekies wrote: “Following several front-to-rear incidents over the past months in various single-seater categories, the FIA would like all F1 teams to ensure that their rear jacking point designs cannot act aggressively during such an incident.
“Considering the strength, shape and position of the jacking points, they may become one of the initial points of contact in a crash with another car and alter the performance of the crash structure of the other car.
“The use of aggressive designs will not be permitted from the Monaco GP onwards.
“All jacking points used from that date must first be approved by the FIA technical department.”
In clarifying what was acceptable as a “non-aggressive” design (examples of ‘aggressive’ designs from FIA letter pictured above), he said it would have to be “geometrically not the first point of contact between the nose and the RIS [rear impact structure]”, and “protrude no more than 45mm from surface of RIS”.
Not all teams had to make changes as some designs were already deemed safe, but those that did had the revisions passed in scrutineering.
“We had to change our jack pick-up point,” Haas team principal Guenther Steiner told Autosport.
“It’s a change for a good reason. The parts came on Wednesday, and we are fine.
“The part on the jack had to be changed and something on the car as well, but it was nothing too demanding.
“It’s the right thing to do, and there was full support.
“There was a reason why, and if we learn something, we should change it.”
The FIA will also ensure that teams in other categories make any changes needed.