Vital Login
Social Login

Other Sites

Network Navigation

Vital Partners

'If It's F1, It's Vital'

Lotus file official protest against Mercedes

The Mercedes rear wing row has dragged on into a third Grand Prix and Lotus, as previously expected, have now filed an official protest with the FIA.

Speaking before the protest was made, Mercedes boss Ross Brawn remained confused about why the situation was still ongoing.

'I think it is disappointing after three races that we are still in this situation, The system hasn't changed and the FIA's position hasn't changed, and as far as I understand their arguments haven't changed. So if they protest now, why didn't they protest in Australia? There is nothing new.'

It's a very good question and why now?

The Mercedes system has been well documented for around a month now and it would seem to be quite clear how it works.

The concept is, in a way, similar to the F-duct-type device which had previously been developed by McLaren and others in previous seasons.

That concept has been banned as any device which is seen as driver operated is now deemed as illegal by the FIA.

Mercedes version appears to be a hole on the rear wing endplate. The purpose of it appears to be to direct air to the front wing of the car, to basically give it a straightline speed boost.

In Australia the Mercedes was regularly around 8kph quicker than Red Bull in the speedtraps, giving them good performances in qualifying and were also strong through the two DRS Zone's in the race.

It works when the driver activates the DRS, the rear wing moves, which then uncovers the hole and immediately it begins to directed air to the front wing to 'stall it' for a speed boost.

As it appears to be only active when the driver enables the DRS their argument is that it is illegal.

FIA race director Charlie Whiting didn't agree, he of course has had a detailed look at the Mercedes design and knows and understands exactly how it works, something the other teams do not have the benefit of.

It might be against the spirit of the rules as McLaren have said, but it doesn't appear to directly break the regulations and Mercedes believe the concept has been in place for two years.

'It is a matter of record that in 2010 Charlie [Whiting] stated that such a system was legal. It is in the minutes of the [technical] working group meetings. The question was asked and he stated his opinion then that he considered it legal. It has not been going on for three races. It has been going on for two years.' Brawn added.

Which again begs the question, why protest now?

The Lotus protest comes under article 3.15 of the technical regulations. If you do not have your book to hand, the important quote is as follows: 'With the exception of the parts necessary for the adjustment described in Article 3.18, any car system, device or procedure which uses driver movement as a means of altering the aerodynamic characteristics of the car is prohibited,'

So basically because the device becomes active when a driver activates the DRS, they believe the device is driver enabled, which was their complaint over a month ago, so again why now?

The protest even includes a 2,000 deposit, small change for a Formula One team, but a measure of their intent?

The Mercedes system is difficult to copy, Ross Brawn has already admitted this, which also means that if Mercedes are forced to take it off their car, a big part of their design concept is taken away from them.

'If the protest is upheld and Mercedes have to change the design of their car then that is effectively their season written off, It would be a big hit and they will be fighting tooth and nail to get this protest turned down.' Sky Sports Ted Kravitz told their news channel.

The fact that making the device illegal will hurt Mercedes more than if Lotus simply copied it, is probably one of the major reasons behind the protest.








Join Vital F1

It's easy to join up and join in on VitalF1.com, simply click the link and enjoy getting involved!

If you are already a member of Vital Football, your logins will automatically work on VitalF1.com!

The Journalist

Writer: Red5 Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Thursday April 12 2012

Time: 11:49AM

 

Have Your Say

Log in...
with your social network     OR     with your Vital account

Recent Vital F1 Articles

Blog: Hungarian GP Report (Tuesday July 29 2014)

Lauda backing for Hamilton (Monday July 28 2014)

2014 - Hungary - Race (Sunday July 27 2014)

Blog: Hungaroing Qualifying (Sunday July 27 2014)

2014 - Hungary - Qualifying (Saturday July 26 2014)

2014 - Hungary - FP3 (Saturday July 26 2014)

2014 - Hungary - FP2 (Friday July 25 2014)

2014 - Hungary - FP1 (Friday July 25 2014)

Could F1 pull Russian Grand Prix? (Thursday July 24 2014)

F1 return to Mexico confirmed (Thursday July 24 2014)

McLaren and Mercedes target Vettel (Thursday July 24 2014)

Wolff predicts Abu Dhabi showdown (Wednesday July 23 2014)

Who will win in Hungary? (Tuesday July 22 2014)

Blog: German GP Report (Tuesday July 22 2014)

Alonso loved Ricciardo tussle (Monday July 21 2014)

Button backtracks (Monday July 21 2014)

What a week for Rosberg (Monday July 21 2014)

2014 - Germany - Race (Sunday July 20 2014)

Blog: Hockenheim Qualifying (Sunday July 20 2014)

2014 - Germany - Qualifying (Saturday July 19 2014)

2014 - Germany - FP3 (Saturday July 19 2014)

2014 - Germany - FP2 (Friday July 18 2014)

2014 - Germany - FP1 (Friday July 18 2014)

Mercedes play down FRIC ban (Friday July 18 2014)

F1 title chase starts now (Wednesday July 16 2014)

McLaren confident in upgrades (Tuesday July 15 2014)

Bianchi impresses for Ferrari (Thursday July 10 2014)

Massa quickest at Silverstone test (Wednesday July 9 2014)

Rosberg plays down Hamilton row (Wednesday July 9 2014)

Bottas finish surprises Williams (Tuesday July 8 2014)

I was lucky says Chilton (Monday July 7 2014)

Raikkonen ok after horror smash (Monday July 7 2014)

Rosberg reflects (Monday July 7 2014)

Perfect day for Hamilton (Monday July 7 2014)

2014 - Britain - Race (Sunday July 6 2014)

Blog: Silverstone Qualifying (Sunday July 6 2014)

2014 - Britain - Qualifying (Saturday July 5 2014)

2014 - Britain - FP3 (Saturday July 5 2014)

2014 - Britain - FP2 (Friday July 4 2014)

2014 - Britain - FP1 (Friday July 4 2014)

Button hits back at Dennis (Friday July 4 2014)

Pirelli boss defends F1 2014 tyres (Thursday July 3 2014)

Caterham sold (Thursday July 3 2014)

McLaren boss critical of Button (Wednesday July 2 2014)

Bernie wants three car teams (Wednesday July 2 2014)

Blog: Silverstone Memories (Tuesday July 1 2014)

Ugly noses banned from F1 (Friday June 27 2014)

Ecclestone slams poor teams (Thursday June 26 2014)

Standing restarts proposed (Wednesday June 25 2014)

Video: Schumacher medical data stolen (Wednesday June 25 2014)

Red Bull boss slams Renault again (Tuesday June 24 2014)

Damage limitation for Hamilton (Monday June 23 2014)

2014 - Austria - Race (Sunday June 22 2014)

Blog: Austrian GP Report (Sunday June 22 2014)

Blog: Red Bull Ring Qualifying (Sunday June 22 2014)

2014 - Austria - Qualifying (Sunday June 22 2014)

2014 - Austria - FP3 (Saturday June 21 2014)

2014 - Austria - FP2 (Friday June 20 2014)

2014 - Austria - FP1 (Friday June 20 2014)

Red Bull challenge (Thursday June 19 2014)

F1 strategy meeting to be held (Wednesday June 18 2014)

Red Bull are not a one man team (Tuesday June 17 2014)

Austria could suit Lotus (Tuesday June 17 2014)

Ferrari remain committed to F1 (Tuesday June 17 2014)

Archived Vital F1 Articles

List All Vital F1 Articles
Have your say
Click here to suggest an article
Click here to suggest a poll

Vital Members League (view all)

1. Red5 1016
2. DJ 879
3. The Fear 771
4. Villaininthemerde 612
5. johnkelv 569
6. Druss_the_Legend 519
7. Push The Button 432
8. col8 334
9. The Intimidator 146
10. __villa__ 145

Current Site Poll (view all polls)

Should Hamilton have moved over for Rosberg?
No way! They're fighting for the title 90%
Yes, it was team orders 10%
Tough call, don't know 0%