In the wake of both Dreyer and Reinbold Racing and Bryan Herta Autosport parting ways with Lotus, INDYCAR has has amended rule 3.8, now requiring teams to garner INDYCAR's approval before switching engine manufacturers mid-season. Effective last Monday, April 30th.
"The intent of the rule is to try to help build a partnership between a team and its engine manufacturer," said Trevor Knowles, INDYCAR's director of engine development. "Having a long-term commitment helps ease concerns about confidentiality of any information the manufacturer may share with a team. It also limits a manufacturer's ability to drop a team from its line-up if they are going through a bad patch. Without it, one would see a drift of all the teams with the best results to the manufacturers with the best results creating a big imbalance across the field.
"However, we have to be pragmatic and realize that there have been and will be times when a team and its manufacturer have to go their separate ways to their mutual benefit. This change allows that to happen while still maintaining control of the process."
According to an INDYCAR rep, the change has no effect on either DRR or BHA's new engine deals as long as they get INDYCAR approval.