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2006 season changes
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Technical Regulations
 
FIA Rules & Regulations Sporting Regulations
2006 season changes
Rules & Regulations - 2004 season changes Rules & Regulations - 2004 season changes
A number of changes to both the Sporting and Technical Regulations have been made by the FIA for the 2006 Formula One season.

Qualifying
For 2006, the single-lap system used in recent years is replaced by a new three-part, knockout format, with multiple cars on track throughout the qualifying hour, which is split into three 15-minute sessions, with short breaks in between.

Q1: All 22 cars may run laps at any time during the first 15 minutes of the hour. At the end of the first 15 minutes, the six slowest cars drop out and fill the final six grid places.

Q2: After a seven-minute break, the times will be reset and the 16 remaining cars then will then run in a second 15-minute session - again they may complete as many laps as they want at any time during that period. At the end of the 15 minutes, the six slowest cars drop out and fill places 11 to 16 on the grid.

Q3: After a further eight-minute break, the times are reset and the final 15-minute session will feature a shootout between the remaining 10 cars to decide pole position and the starting order for the top 10 grid places. Again, these cars may run as many laps as they wish.

In the first two 15-minute sessions, cars may run any fuel load and drivers knocked out after those sessions may refuel ahead of the race. However, the top-ten drivers in the final 15-minute session may only replace the fuel they used during that session before the start of the race.

If a driver is deemed to have stopped unnecessarily on the circuit or impeded another driver during the qualifying session, then his times will be cancelled.

Engines
For 2006, engines are reduced in size from the previous 3-litre V10s to 2.4-litre V8s. The aim is to reduce costs and improve safety. With similar engine speeds, the change is expected to cut peak power by around 200bhp, which in turn is likely to add around three to five seconds to lap times at most circuits. The FIA may allow some teams to use 2005-spec V10s if they do not have access to competitive V8. The FIA will enforce a rev limit on any V10s to ensure performance is comparable with that of a V8.

Tyres
After a season’s absence, tyre changes during races return to Formula One in 2006. The thinking behind this is that the reduced engine size will offset any performance gain. Drivers also have access to slightly more tyres than in 2005 - seven sets of dry-weather, four sets of wet-weather and three sets of extreme-weather. Drivers must make a final choice of dry-weather compound ahead of qualifying.

Weekend schedule
In a slight change to the Grand Prix weekend format, Saturday morning now features a single, one-hour practice session, as opposed to two, 45-minute sessions. It takes place between 1100 and 1200. Qualifying is an hour later than before, commencing at 1400.
FIA Regulations in detail
2006 Drivers Table
F.Alonso 134
M.Schumacher 121
F.Massa 80
G.Fisichella 72
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2006 Constructors Table
Renault 206
Ferrari 201
McLaren-Mercedes 110
Honda 86
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