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ACO’s Success Handicap Could Be Adopted in Other Classes

ACO looking to potentially implement ‘success handicap’ to other classes in future…

Photo: MPS Agency

ACO sporting director Vincent Beaumesnil believes its newly developed success handicap system for LMP1 could be used in other classes in the future.

Confirmed last month, the system will make weight, power and other related performance adjustments to cars based on its championship points, in an effort to close the gap between the Toyota TS050 Hybrid and LMP1 non-hybrids in the FIA World Endurance Championship.

Beaumesnil has suggested the formula could be taken one step further and be utilized in other classes, beyond success ballast, which is already in use in several GTE categories.

“We now have similar systems in GT racing [WEC GTE-Am, ELMS GTE]. It’s purely just the weight. And we’ve said we’ll have BoP in Hypercar,” Beaumesnil told Sportscar365.

“But in general motorsport has to evolve in that direction.

“Look at Formula 1. I love Formula 1 and I’m am a fan of Formula 1 but everybody gets bored to see Mercedes winning every weekend.

“You can introduce a system, as long as the rule is the same for everybody, it remains a sport. But it’s just a way to balance the field better and control the costs.”

Beaumesnil said the theory of the system is to prevent an arm’s race between manufacturers, which contributed to the collapse of the LMP1 hybrid category.

A Balance of Performance system, similar to the FIA and ACO’s Auto BoP in GTE-Pro, is expected to be introduced into the new-for-2020 Hypercar formula, in order to ensure a repeat of the past.

“In the end, we don’t want to see people spending hundreds of millions and make the race boring at the same time. It doesn’t work anymore,” Beaumesnil said.

“We understand that so I think in the end, the best will always win, because it’a a sport.

“It’s up to everybody to be the best, because over a season, even with a system like this, I think the best will win. 

“Closer racing and less costs is the right approach for the sport today.”

No EoT Changes Expected Amid Success Handicap System

Beaumesnil said it’s the not the ACO’s intention to adjust the starting Equivalence of Technology for the upcoming season and instead let the success handicap system play out.

A starting EoT was released last month prior to the Prologue pre-season test in Barcelona.

“The idea is that we have this starting EoT and the success handicap will do the job,” Beaumesnil said.

“But I would say on a theoretical point of view, we always keep the ability to modify something that could be wrong.

“If we see that something needs to be adjusted, we will do it. But the idea is to go on the success handicap system.”

Partial-season or single-race LMP1 entries, meanwhile, will be at a performance disadvantage due to not being points-scoring cars for the championship, meanwhile.

“They cannot gain an advantage, for sure,” Beaumesnil said.

“It’s like the Auto BoP. You cannot start with an advantage by coming in race-by-race. It has to be a disadvantage. You would be on the bad side on the balance. 

“We will manage case by case on this. These guys don’t score points, but in anyway we have to place their EoT with the less competitive car because otherwise it would be really unfair for the guys completing the entire season.”

John Dagys is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Sportscar365 as well as the recently launched e-racing365 Web site for electric racing. Dagys spent eight years as a motorsports correspondent for FOXSports.com/SPEED Channel, and contributes to other publications worldwide. Contact John

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