FIA insists that Mercedes F-duct wing is legal

FIA Logo. Formula One World Championship, Rd 7, Turkish Grand Prix, Preparations, Istanbul Park, Turkey, Thursday 4 June 2009.Apr.3 (GMM) The FIA, governing body of the sport, appears to have waded back into the Formula 1 ‘F-duct’ debate, indicating that the Mercedes-style solution is fully legal.

We reported on Monday that the saga looked set to continue into China next weekend, with some teams – notably Red Bull and Lotus – questioning the legality of the aerodynamic innovation.

It had emerged that Lotus technical director James Allison has come up with another argument against the technology that will be posed to the FIA’s Charlie Whiting ahead of scrutineering in Shanghai next week.

Red Bull’s Christian Horner insists that Red Bull and Lotus’ concerns are shared by others.

“Believe me it’s not just Red Bull, I think there’s half the paddock that’s been looking at this,” he told British television Sky Sport’s The F1 Show.

The Red Bull team boss revealed that Whiting left Malaysia wanting “to have a think about it”.

So, the latest development is the re-release via the FIA website of an “edited version” of the technical briefing that Whiting gave to reporters in Australia last month.

It is believed the complaining teams’ main objection to the Mercedes system is that it arguably uses ‘driver movement’ – the pressing of the DRS button – to be activated.

Under the heading “Pressing the DRS button and the issue of ‘driver movement’”, the media briefing quotes Whiting as stating simply: “This is specifically allowed (in the rules).”

Mercedes’ Ross Brawn is quoted by the BBC: “We call it the DRS, because that’s all it is. The purpose of the DRS is to improve overtaking and that’s what we’re trying to do.”

Whiting’s stance in China, however, may not be the end of it.

“Then the teams are faced with alternatives,” Horner explained. “Either accept it and get on it and maybe look at your own solution if that fits your car.

[We've] got the opportunity to protest if we were to feel – or any other team were to feel – that we didn’t agree with Charlie’s interpretation,” he added.

Subbed by AJN.
  • Prince Kai

    Red bull are jokes. Accept its legal use or protest

  • Shibby Forza Ferrari

    Prince Kai, true. They are crybaby’s, they had an illegal car for 3 years (front wings and nano tech). So now they are certainly in no position to demand a ban. Go back to the supermarket to sell some cans you dooshes!

  • fawxx

    didnt all the teams had a informal agreement to not use F duct completely already?

    IMO, allowing this f duct will incur alot alot of $$ to develop, and it may be banned for the next season. which makes it a joke.

  • jonnyp

    they will start over developing it like they did with the f-duct & blown diffuser. redbull will cry about it they don’t have a superior car. lacks in qualifying but good race pace. i guarantee adrian was designing 1 from day 1.

  • Andy – London

    I think it’s wrong for Horner to quote “half the paddock” without any proof. Only 2 teams have come forward. Maybe Lotus feel that because their exhaust system got banned, Mercedes DRS sould be too. Redbull were under scrutiny all year in 2011 for various reasons. Their illegal front wheel camber at Spa was plain dangerous. The teams don’t want the Merc rear wing in China because of the long straight, same as Canada. It won’t be that beneficial in, say, Singapore will it?

  • james hayden

    i think its a shame that mercez has come up with somthing others have not .
    so they are crying wolf when realy they had parts ect on there cars last year that were clearly not in line with the rules redbull for a start with flexing wings ect yet mercez didnt say they were going to partishion it i think horner and any other team need to relax let say that if the rules were in the other s hands and redbull had the invention they would be saying things like they did last year when some teams asked for legality of there car in my opinion cry babys i hope charlie sanctions the idea ok to shut others up cool on ross and team

  • Al

    Why doesn’t Mr Horner clearly tell us if his team’s technical solutions in 2011 were 100% legal. It is common knowledge that the car’s super-flexing front wings gave them way more advantage than Mercedes’ current F-duct. Coming up with a method to ensure you don’t get caught does not make a solution legal. How come the advantage is all gone this year? Does that have something to do with stricter FIA controls that expose Red Bull Racing as professional cheats? C’mon Mr Horner. Stop playing like a holier than thou cry baby.