WEC to Forgo Tire Warmer Ban at the 24 Hrs of Lemans

May 11, 2023Ramon Jones

The FIA World Endurance Championships announced that tire warmers would be banned for the 2023 season. Naturally there were may mixed opinions on the matter. The most pressing being driver safety. It appears the FIA have had a change of heart for the 2023 24 Hours of Le Mans. The ban on tire warmers has been lifted for the 2023 24 hours of Le Mans. The change comes after multiple complaints at the 6 Hours of Spa. The reversal of the ban will be effective for all three classes on grid.

The ban was originally started to reduce the carbon impact of the series. However, some do not agree the impact outweighs the safety of the drivers. Racer.com reported that, Antonello Coletta, the head of Attiva Sportive GT stated, “Starting from the assumption that the rules are the same for everyone and that we abide by them, I think we need to reflect on the ban on tire warmers. It’s a common opinion in the paddock and among professionals, not to mention the drivers, that this situation has become dangerous. At Spa, there have been many accidents and extreme episodes due to cold temperatures and changeable weather, and it’s time to do some serious thinking on the matter because it has major ramifications for safety.

He Continued Discussing the Temperature Swings in a 24 Hour Race

“We are on the eve of a decisive race like the 24 Hours of Le Mans where, overnight, temperatures are low and speeds very high. It’s not just an issue for us. The accidents involved different cars, from different classes, driven at the time by both professional and gentleman drivers. This situation had already been predicted some time ago.”

Time will tell if safety continues to remain an issue after Le Mans. The FIA may need to find other ways to reduce its carbon foot print. If crashes continue the FIA will need to balance driver safety with reducing carbon emissions.

You can find more information on the 24 Hours of Le Mans at fiaWEC.com