Formula 1

Ferrari, McLaren & Renault Protest Leniency of Racing Point’s Brake Duct Penalty

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Credit: BWT Racing Point Formula One Team

Following the news that the BWT Racing Point Formula One Team have been handed a fifteen-point deduction and a €400,000 fine for breaching the sporting regulations, three teams have notified the FIA that they intend the leniency of the penalty.

The Renault DP World F1 Team made the initial protest surrounding the legality of Racing Point’s RP20, particularly the brake ducts, which they felt were not designed by the Silverstone team but by the Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team

It is mandated in the regulations that teams must be responsible for the design of their own car, and in between last weekend’s British Grand Prix and this weekend’s 70th Anniversary Grand Prix, the protest was heard, with the decision coming out in Renault’s favour.

The points deduction and financial penalty were handed to Racing Point, but they were allowed to continue using the brake ducts for the rest of the season, which is the main reason why three teams – Renault, Scuderia Ferrari and McLaren F1 Team – are lodging an appeal.

“We can confirm that we have just stated our intention to appeal against this morning’s FIA Stewards’ decision regarding Racing Point,” a statement from Ferrari read on Friday evening at Silverstone.

Cyril Abiteboul, the Team Principal at Renault, says he was satisfied that the protest, which was initially for the Styrian Grand Prix last month, was vindicated by the FIA’s decision, although he remains dissatisfied with the severity of the penalty handed out to Racing Point.

“There is a very specific and targeted discussion and protests in relation to one part of the car, brake duct, front and rear,” Abiteboul is quoted as saying by Motorsport.com. 

“And in relation to that we are satisfied with the fact that the FIA stewards confirmed that some of these parts were in breach of the sporting regulations. It’s a sporting regulation, but it’s really a technical matter that ends up being placed in the sporting regulations.

“So, we are satisfied with that conclusion. I think that the question of sanction is open for debate, and could probably be discussed endlessly. We will consider that matter, bearing in mind that the advantage that was obviously obtained will keep on going for all the season. And it’s a very material advantage.”

Other teams may join those three in protesting, while Racing Point themselves are considering their own protest as they believe they did nothing wrong. 

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