Lauda not convinced Red Bull is legal amid software changes on RB9

Niki Lauda

Niki Lauda

Niki Lauda did not sound convinced about the legality of Red Bull‘s car as reports of illegal traction control echo around the Yeongam paddock, and points to recent FIA approved software changes on the RB9 package.

Mercedes‘ Lauda, however, gave a less convincing answer when asked his thoughts about the Red Bull ‘system’.

“Red Bull did some software testing before Singapore,” he told Osterreich newspaper. “[I know] because the FIA said [that Red Bull] needed to change something about it.

“They did that and then everything was apparently fine,” added Lauda.

Race winner Sebastian Vettel pays homage to his car in Singapore

Race winner Sebastian Vettel pays homage to his car in Singapore

Told that his answer did not sound completely convincing as to Red Bull’s innocence, the legendary triple world champion insisted: “If you cannot prove anything, you should not speculate.”

Ferrari‘s Fernando Alonso on Thursday, however, insisted he does not think the reigning world champions are cheating.

“People talk a lot without knowing exactly what they are seeing or hearing,” a spokesman for the Maranello based team told Spain’s Marca newspaper.

“Ferrari will not protest,” he added, while correspondent Marco Canseco said that Ferrari is not even planning a mere clarification from the FIA. (GMM.)

Subbed by AJN.


  • JPSmoove

    Put another log on the fire boys! lol

  • diwant


  • Rupert Suren

    Why does Webber’s car not sound the same as Vettel’s?

  • bunko


    Whatever they did to Vettel’s car, it surely worked very well. Since Webber is about to retire from F1, Webber can freely talk to anyone about RB after this season. I’m sure RB would like to keep their secret within their team, so they don’t need to put this new development into Webber’s car. The car without this new development is still competitive and their so far ahead in points, that they can afford to do so. If what they did to Vettel’s car is legal or not is a question I will leave to the FIA should they decide to investigate further.

  • Red Bull Cheats

    @bunko, so it IS the car and not Vettel that is worth 2.5 seconds a lap? Because some people think Vettel is that god. Not me.

  • Red Bull Cheats

    @bunko, Red Bull could have put the part on Webber’s car without him knowing the technical details. So he could have had the advantage without stealing the secret.

  • RedBull is still cheating and FIA is clueless

    Clearly RedBull has some form of traction control you can clearly hear it from his engine.

    Charlie Whiting needs to be replaced he is incompetent at best and corrupt at worst.

    As for the FIA they could not catch a cold. Look at how RedBull skirted the rules about flexing wings for so long, they passed the BS test from FIA but video showed clearly their front wings were acting very different that any other teams in a manner that was clearly against the rules. Just because RedBull figured out a way to pass the weight test on the wing and still allow their front to flex against the rules does not mean their car was legal. The video of their cars front wing proves that but the FIA ran around clueless as usual saying but they passed the weight test, they passed the weight test completely ignoring the video evidence of the extreme flexing of their front wings.

    The exhaust note of Vettel’s car is clear proof that RedBull is once again skirting the rules and why are they changing their software? That was all suppose to be locked in at the first of the year.

    DR is a fool if he thinks he is going to be given an equal car to Vettel, and I bet that is why Kimi did not sign a contract to drive for RedBull, they would not agree to equal status. Everyone knows full well Webber has not had an equal car to Vettel, Marko gave that up back in 2010 when he made it very clear that Vettel was the number 1 driver and Webber has gone down hill each year since.

  • gilgen

    So, Vettel is trouncing your hero and therefore must be cheating? You need to grow up! Car has been checked and found totally legal, but then you know better, don’t you?

    Niki says that if you cannot prove anything, then you shouldn’t speculate, but then goes and does exactly that. Ha ha.

    Oh, and by the way, all Renault engines were making the same noise and this has been proven by numerous utube clips, but maybe your eyes are purely focused on Vettel ?

  • Saša

    FIA do what they are paid for.

    ”I want old tires, this years not good.”, OK, here, old 2012. tires.

    Got it?

    do any really think that Red Bull need to cheat, come on, there is no need, they get what they needed, old tires while Ferrari and Lotus was made for new ones, which no longer exist

    Maybe I am wrong? I hope.

  • Lol

    Anyone who listens to the actual footage audio knows Webber’s car has the exact same sound, the entire season. And it is legal or it would have been banned a long time ago because the last thing the FIA needs is RBR dominating. So if they could stop it, they would.

    You guys are clutching for straws.

  • Stoner

    Alonso has nothing to complain, Hahaha
    Himself ran an illegal car to win 2005 WDC

  • toomanytrolls

    Red bull have clarified that they have been working with Renault so that the engine runs on a reduced number of cylinders on corner exit. While this works similar to a traction control system, it is completely legal.

  • Daniel

    A lot of ultracrepidarian people claiming RB and Vettel are cheating. Defamation, libel or slander are the tools of poorly developed minds. Other teams must work harder to save the sport, not ask the best to down-perform. BTW: I am not a Vettel fan. rather a Kimi fan…. Oh, and also I know Alonso fans (the booers) will need to google half of the vocabulary in this comment. Good Luck.

    “If you cannot prove anything, you should not speculate.” N. Lauda.

    Take the poll!

  • Boycottthebull

    People from outside noticed a difference with Vettels car and suspected some special engine management software to mimic traction control was being employed. Unbelievable? Well there are doubts, then however now Nikki has come forward and said how Red Bull just got permission before Singapore to do some software upgrades. Too much of a coincidence. It may not be cheating technically but after Singapore its clear it wasnt all Vettel either. Those perplexed by why Webbers car wasnt given the same upgrades is a simple one, they dont want you to know about it. If 2 of the cars swept through ahead of the rest it would have been even more obvious and raised even more questions. This way they can say look how Webber is behind and also claim its all about their Wonderboy. It was unusual how Horner went on a PR spree to rave about Vettels marvellous performance in Singapore without praising the team. Its clear this there has been a technical advancement. The rules are always behind as they cannot change something till the following season. Once the drivers and constructors championships are sewn up you can bet the mysterious software will vanish and Red Bull will cry innocence.

  • gilgen

    Of course there is a technical advancement, but isn’t that what F1 is supposed to be about? Just because your team is lagging behind, is no reason for your stupid penname. I mean, how on earth can you boycott a team?
    You really need to grow up and study F1 to see that at all times through the history of F1, one team or another has been dominant. And then it is up to the others to catch up.
    If your team became dominant next year, should we all call for a boycott on whoever?

  • alonso_is_slow_IS_AN_IDIOT

    stoner… renault mass dampers were deemed LEGAL at first thats why they have campaigned with it. it was on the latter part of the season that it was banned after a few discussions. if it was illegal then points should be taken off alonso and the team

  • Taskmaster

    Has anyone watched, or more specifically heard, the cars in FP1 and FP2 Korea? With cars in isolation of one another (free track space) you can clearly here that all are making the odd cylinder cut/Hulmholtz chamber noise mid to corner exit. This includes the Red Bull, STR, Mercedes, Williams, Lotus, Marrussia, Force India, Sauber and Caterham cars. The Ferrari has a different, more subtle sound to it, and the Merc, while obviously cylinder cutting is less pronounced. Interestingly, when two or more cars are in near proximity, the blended noise conceals the gravely note altogether – probably due to the fact that a line of cars are each at a different engine speed at different points, thus the noise is canceled out. Interesting. Digging back through recordings of previous practices reveals that this has been the case for some time, I was just not listening for it. Now I am sensitized to it, it’s pretty easy to hear it’s been there all along to one degree or another, and seems to be more prevalent on tracks with slow high downforce segments. At Monza/Spa it was not as obvious as it is in Korea this round. Beyond this, Lauda is talking out his back side on this. Red Bull was the one requesting the change – allowed by rules – to adjust programming to suit the new tires, per the rules, and scrutinized as required by the FIA – which Mercedes and every other team has done as well since the change back to Kevlar construction. His wording is intentionally misleading.

  • bmendon

    Reason cannot swim in a sea of idiots.

  • Tinto

    @bmendon: impecably said.

    All this anti-Vettel saga is madness, or traction control issue.

  • Red Bull Cheats

    For 2 years teams said Red Bull had an illegal ride height adjuster as they clearly ran the same height in practice and the race with 100k more fuel. The FIA said the cars were legal.

    Then the FIA saw a Red Bull technician adjusting the ride height by hand by turning the third shocker! The FIA told Red Bull to remove the system with no punishment to hide the fact that for 2 years they didn’t find the system.

    Then Red Bull said they never used the system and the whole thing was pushed under the carpet. Look it up on Google, BBC article and others on this issue.

    Then video and photos showed the Red Bull wing flexing. Red Bull said it was not flexing. The FIA said it was legal, then they changed the flex tests and hey presto the wing stopped flexing.

    Then Adrian Newey said that the new flex tests were hurting them as the wing could not flex as much!

    Lewis said he can see from in car footage that Vettel accelerates 20m before everyone else, including Webber. That is the evidence, but the method of cheating has not been found.

    Like Piquet crashing at Singapore and Alonso wins, people suspected but had no proof. The FIA found nothing wrong. Then a year later the truth came out.

    Like Lance Armstrong, for years there were accusations without evidence, and he said it was just jealous people. Then finally years afterwards the truth came out. The sporting body was found to have ignored proof that Armstrong was cheating as it would make them look bad for not catching it earlier.

    Same as the FIA. They know Red Bull are cheating but as they can’t find the methid they brush it under the carpet. Vettel and Red Bull are cheating once again, we just don’t know how yet.

  • Troy F Collins

    They need to change the scrutiny parameters to committee….and get rid of Charlie

    Anyone who allows a double diffuser that was even hardly legitimate even when the spirit of the rules is taken into account….needs to be changed

    there’s been too many rules breached over the years when it obviously gave too much of a advantage and the season became far too predictable and one sided……

    I say let the teams define whats legal and whats not…..

    Vettel said yes we had traction control and its clever and no one will figure it out……and they didnt use it in qualy but in the race yes……I heard it and it sounds like hot blow

    Nikki said red bull did apply for a software update before Singapore….

    I like Vettel glad to seem him win but we need a system to weed out some of this……its not in the spirit of the rules

  • Nibbler

    Pushing the rules with genuine advancements (tuned mass damper, double chassis, energy recovery etc.) is one thing – I’m all for it, but using tourque modulation of KERS charge/discharge to interfere with (improve) driver input seems a bit of a dead end on the surface of it.

    That said, the more electric delivery there is, the more it becomes a development route (and could be road relevant for EV power delivery). I have no idea how you’d create rules for a “throttle map” on pure electric drive without leaving gaps for TC.

    Plus if you can charge on acceleration, stick a differential between drive and charging and any torque above the resistance on the charging side will go into charge rather than wheelspin on the drive side creating passive TC. Now that’s road relevant & useful – energy recovery from TC rather than energy wastage.

  • charles

    This car is illegal. Red Bull makes drinks not cars,why are they so fast.

  • testosterone

    To Daniels comment about using big words . Im a ferrari fan of ni-on 18 years and by heck you talk some crap. No one os saying for rb to slow down for other drivers to succeed but as rb are using software that acts as tc and has been kept quiet for obvousreasons then lets give all the cars that sofyware and then lets see how I pans out.

  • Steve

    The question you all need to ask yourselves is how does Vettle gain such an advantage at the start of every race and then maintain a 12 second gap during the latter stages? No other championship driver can pull this off so whatever is going on with Vettles Red Bull something does not add up. If they are using a technical advantage it would be very easy to pull into the lead and then fall back enough not to be overtaken and why is Webber’s car suffering from so many problems, too many questions, very suspicious and the FIA seem to have their blind folds on!