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Ready for 2016?

A few changes and a few old chestnuts could easily catch the unwary and make that first meeting less enjoyable.  Here are a few reminders. Before taking radical action, please always check with the Blue Book ( and also with our own regs (

Rain Lights

It is generally agreed that being shoved up the back by a 500kg Carbon Fibre missile at a closing speed of 60mph or more is A Bad Thing for all parties.  This is why the board decided to join F3 Cup in specifying high performance rear lights. So far the club has selected 3.

A red light on the right warns of a car's presence - a less bright light and it's invisible

Cartek CK-LR-F3
Lifeline  LL421-100-005
Melectronics  F3-2009

The technical regs state:
Models from the above manufacturers, from the same range and with solid and flashing operation that give the same luminous output and visibility can be used however these must be used in flashing mode only during qualification and racing. The use of a flashing mode switch with a solid light is acceptable. Rain Lights must flash red and within the 3Hz to 4Hz frequency range.

For those who are like me not of a technical bent, I am informed by Dan Fox (who knows more about Dallaras than most people outside Varano Melegari) that the Cartek unit is a good fit in the older (pre 2002) square housing. I also gather that the Melectronics unit fits the later wider Dallara housing. Those of us not running Dallarae may be interested in Lou Watts's comment at the AGM that Raceparts (“ask for Gary”) are offering a Lifeline unit with flasher at £72.50 + VAT plus £6 for a switch.

The light must be located within 10cm of the centre line of the vehicle and be clearly visible from the rear, though I admit you would need to be a blithering idiot to mount it so it wasn't.

Frontal Head Restraints (“HANS Devices”)

If you don't know that Frontal Head Restraints are mandatory in 2016 then you really need to ask your carer to take you out more.  We covered them last year and the MSA pdf is excellent guidance. There is one snag which needs to be checked. FHR's have been around for a few years now and the standards have changed. There is some incompatibility, and the following diagram and explanation from MSA News is brought to your attention.

Please refer to the FIA produced diagram above for clarification on compatability.

On the left the diagram shows the compatibility between FHRs and the tethers, with the only unacceptable combination being that you cannot use an 8858-2002 tether with an 8858-2010 FHR. An 8858-2002 FHR is compatible with both the 2002 and 2010 standard tethers.

On the right the diagram shows the compatibility between anchor posts and helmets, demonstrating that an 8858- 2010 or 8860-2010 approved helmet can only be fitted with 8858-2010 anchor posts. And an 8858-2002 or 8860-2004 approved helmet can only be fitted with 8858-2002 anchor posts.

The arrows in the middle then show that any combination of tether and anchor post is compatible, so an 8858-2002 tether is compatible with an 8858-2010 anchor post or an 8858-2002 anchor post. And an 8858-2010 tether is compatible with an 8858-2010 anchor post or an 8858-2002 anchor post.

The MSA has also produced the following guidance.

Note also that FHR tethers are not lifed. Some models will have a date on the label, but this only refers to the date of manufacture and does not mean that it will expire at any time. Of course the manufacturer’s guidelines will state that the tethers should be replaced following a significant accident.


My own helmet is a Snell 2005 standard, and I was told several times last year that it would need replacing this year. Curiously, this doesn't seem to be the case from the following list extracted from the Blue Book. 


"Helmets bearing one of the under mentioned ‘standards’ may be approved by the MSA subject to other criteria being met.

FIA 8860-2004 (Not valid after 31.12.20)
FIA 8860-2010
FIA 8859-2015
SNELL SA2005 (Not valid after 31.12.18)
SNELL SA2010 (Not valid after 31.12.23)
SNELL SA2015 (Not valid after 31.12.23)
SNELL SAH2010 (Not valid after 31.12.23)
SFI Foundation 31.1A, 31.2A (Not valid after 31.12.2018)"

SA2015 are not at the time of writing FIA approved so cannot be used at Spa.

Steering wheels

Not a permitted design, with or without the big X nailed to it.

Just a reminder that J5.7.1 states that steering wheels must have a continuous rim not incorporating any reflex angles in its basic shape (except for Drag Race vehicles). ‘D’ shape wheels are permitted but the design shown left is not.


If you have a camera fitted, then suction fittings cannot be used as the primary fitting. (Section J 5.21.5). The Blue Book (J5.21) states that playback must be possible at the Event by regular means such as a lap top computer. There appears to be a strong implication that in the event of a disciplinary matter the officials may require access to recordings.


F117 looks good, but identification not stealth is needed in racing. The racing numbers are "clearly visible" (???!!) on this Ferrari. We need to do it properly.

Few aircraft look cooler than the F117 Stealth Fighter. Unfortunately some racing cars emulate it in their approach to stealth - they have invisible numbers. Whilst it would be inappropriate to suggest that the Blue Book's requirement's are impossible to achieve on most modern single seaters, it would certainly not be wrong to call for very clear numbers. A simple font with a good size and most importantly a very clear contrast with the background. “I've seen black numbers on dark blue paintwork”, a leading CoC told us. He wasn't impressed. It makes work more difficult for the grid crew (that overheating engine might be because nobody can see that you're number 80 and they've been looking for you), the timekeepers, the marshalls and the safety car crew.  If your number isn't clear, you've started the meeting by upsetting the officials. This is not, in my experience, the action of a wise man.

Tony Cotton (with thanks to Steven Connor, Terry Clark, MSA, Alister Poulter, David Scott)

Disclaimer: The above represents only the unofficial view of the writer and not of the Monoposto Racing Club in any way whatsover. Subheadlines and captions are not originated from the named author. We are unable to reproduce results due to copyright reasons. If any pictures are copyright and the owner wishes them removed please email us.