MSA : Fuel Statement

Statement: Fuel octane limits

Following an intensive period of consultation, the Motor Sports Association has concluded its review of the Fuel Regulations.

Under the direction of Colin Hilton, MSA Chief Executive, the enquiry thoroughly researched the facts, interviewing individuals and companies from many areas of the sport, including competitors, engine preparation companies, World Rally teams and fuel suppliers.

The report's findings were presented to and approved by the MSA Executive Committee, after which the recommendations were sent to members of the Motor Sports Council for consideration. The Council has approved that a proposed change be put out immediately for consultation, for ratification in September 2007.

Championships or events wishing to stipulate an alternative fuel specification to the current MSA 100 Octane, are already permitted to do so under existing rules (E12.13.3), although this would always be subject to the MSA approval (B2.2).

The proposed change will simplify Regulation E12.13.3 by adding a condition that all organisers must have the prior written authority of the MSA before fuel other than pump fuel, as defined in the Regulations, is used in events or championships.

The Council may agree exceptionally to implement this change from 1 January 2008, despite the usual 12 month stability regulation for all technical rule changes.

Championship and event organisers are reminded of their ability to amend their Supplementary Regulations during the season, subject to regulation B8.4 which requires the unanimous approval of all competitors and also that of the MSA.

The MSA reserves the right, at its absolute discretion, to carry out fuel testing at any time, as laid out in the General Regulations. The MSA shall continue to exercise that discretion, as it has always done.

Colin Hilton, MSA Chief Executive:

"The fuel testing programme has revealed that apparently the 100 octane limit is being disregarded by a section of the sport.
"It is in no-one's interest to see people driven from the sport, but equally if people are deliberately transgressing the rules to gain an unfair advantage, it will have the knock-on effect of forcing other competitors to do the same. It is absolutely vital for the future of the sport that we re-establish the regulations on this issue and then enforce them correctly.
"This has been a very complex issue and it has become extremely emotive at times. In examining the facts and consulting throughout the sport, it became clear that it is very possible to get a different answer to same question from a number of experts.
"The regulations have always been in place to allow a degree of flexibility for event and championship organisers. Rather than adopting a dogmatic approach and legislating one way or the other, we have proposed a tidying up of the existing regulations to ensure that events and championships are able to respond to the needs and wishes of their competitors."

Release MSA07-037: 3 April 2007

For Media Information Purposes - No Regulatory Value

Further notes:


Current Regulation E12.13.3 states that Competitors must:-
E12.13.3. Use pump fuel [see definition Section P] except where permitted otherwise under SRs, Formula Rules, Championship Regulations or specifically by the MSA.
The above Regulation is subject to Regulation B2.2, which states:-

B2.2. The MSA reserves full rights to add or modify any conditions attached to the permit even after it has been granted, and may decline to grant or may withdraw a permit without stating a reason.

The effect of these two Regulations is that whilst event or championship organisers may wish to allow the use of fuel other than pump fuel (as defined in Section P, page 86, of the current Blue Book) it is the MSA that has the final decision as to what fuel, or octane rating is permitted.

Where an organiser wishes to alter its regulations then these can be amended where all competitors registered for the event or championship, as the case may be, agree to the amendment and in addition, the MSA also agrees: please refer to Regulation B8.4.

Finally, competitors must remember that wherever fuel other than pump fuel (as defined) is used in a vehicle then a Day-Glo orange disc must be affixed in accordance with Regulation E12.13.5.

Issued on behalf of the Motor Sports Association by Fingal
For further information please contact Ben Taylor
Telephone: 020 7384 8725 Mobile: 07866 449940

3rd April, 2007