Horner: We are extremely confident that we have not broken the rules

Formula One World Championship, Rd1, Australian Grand Prix, Practice, Albert Park, Melbourne, Australia, Friday 14 March 2014.

Red Bull Team Principal Christian Horner is “extremely confident” that his team’s case to overturn Daniel Ricciardo’s disqualification from second place in the Australian Grand Prix, which will be heard at the FIA International Court of Appeal on 14 April.

Horner told Sky, “We are appealing on the grounds that we do not believe, we are extremely confident, that we have not broken the rules, that we haven’t exceeded the 100 kg/h of fuel that is permitted to be utilised by the car and the engine.”

The reigning world champions argument centres on the exact wording – in fact lack of wording in this instance – of the FIA’s Technical Regulations with Article 5.1.4 stating: Fuel mass flow must not exceed 100 kg/h.

According to Red Bull the rules do not specifically state that this reading has to come from the FIA provided sensor, thus they feel they can use their own measurements to prove they did not breach the regulations.


“So that was the reason for our appeal, we feel we have a strong case and it will be down to the appeal court to ultimately decide. Our whole case is on the fact of which reading is correct.”

“We have a sensor that is drifting and isn’t reading correctly versus a fuel rail that we know is calibrated and we know that hasn’t varied throughout the weekend and has subsequently been checked and found to be not faulty and hasn’t moved or varied at all since it was installed on the car prior to the weekend.”

“Our argument is very simple – that we haven’t broken the Technical Regulations. That we haven’t exceeded the fuel flow limit and that the sensor, which hopefully we will be able to demonstrate in the appeal, is erroneous.”

“I think the problem with the Technical Directive is that as we have seen in the Pirelli tyre case or the double diffuser days, that the directive, as it now states on the bottom of the directive, is the opinion of the Technical Delegate – it is not a regulation, it is not regulatory, it is purely an opinion.”


“We are bound by the Technical and Sporting Regulations. 5.1.4 of the Technical Regulations says you must not exceed 100 kg/h of fuel usage – we haven’t done that. Therefore our view is we haven’t broken the regulations and Technical Directives are of non-regulatory value.”

By the time the hearing takes place, Red Bull will have contested the Malaysian Grand Prix and Bahrain Grand Prix. Horner explains the plan for these back-to-back races.

“Hopefully we will have a sensor that works, and works in line with the fuel rail and there isn’t this discrepancy.”

“Fundamentally that is the most important thing and if there is a variance or a drift it is something that we will obviously have to discuss with the FIA and we probably won’t be alone in that,” concluded Horner. (GP247)

Subbed by AJN.

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  • =El Presidente=

    I must admit, that Mr Horner is a world-class liar.

  • Himanshu Kansal

    Well, Redbull should be fined for wasting FIA’s time and punished even harder for using their own manipulated version of fuel flow meter as the rules clearly mention that no team can use their own fuel flow meter. End of story. Redbull is being such a Cry Baby.

  • Hugo Lafreniere

    I haven’t read the rules, but if the following statement is accurate : «According to Red Bull the rules do not specifically state that this reading has to come from the FIA provided sensor, thus they feel they can use their own measurements to prove they did not breach the regulations», then they have a case.
    Of course even if the rules are silent on which sensor to use, if all teams were told to use the FIA one, and all teams did, and RBR did NOT voice their dissent, only to bring this up AFTER their sensor showed a lower reading than the FIA one, then they should still be sanctioned.

  • Dave Bates

    Well said Mr. Horner, the Red Bull not only has wings, but now sports a rather fine set of balls ! I,m still confused by other teams compliancy to this obviously flawed piece of junk, & ask the question, why the late changes to spec for F1 ? In LMP1 ( wec ) cars the sensor is required to opererate surrounded by ambient air, and vented to atmospere in a chassis pocket, whilst in F1 i believe late changes were made to submerse this in the fuel cell, ( 2 bar maximum ) fuel cell pressure. I would assume that all F1 teams have questions about the repeatability & calibration of this junk. Maybe the ” gag order ” is for all teams other than Red Bull ? Furthermore the data from this device over can bus to the FIA dataloggers is only available to teams at the discretion of the FIA ? Whats all this about ? calibratechnology.com Andrew Burston, director of Calibra gave this speech sometime ago QUOTE. , ( It is very satisfying to be involved in implementing the “” FIA, s VISION ” for bringing racing into line with the concerns of the motor industry and society at large ” said Burston ! Unquote. What is the FIA,s future ” vision” of control over race cars while going around the track ? These technical challenges are all very well, but my belief is that not all F 1 fans have the slightest interest in how the cars work ! most prefer to crack open a can, put their feet up and enjoy the action. So why does this device have a use ? Control freaks who want a “foot too many ” on the accelerator in order to manipulate results spring to mind ! with democratic reasoning that will only supply data at their discretion, and their data is final and not up for debate.? This kind of democracy reminds me of two wolves and one sheep discussing whats for dinner ! So my vote ( insignificant ) would be to remove these devices and deposit them in the nearest wheelie bin. If fuel efficiency has to be so relevant to racing, then fine, lets go along with the 100 kg limit, & allow the teams to blast enough fuel through their engines to ” melt turbos” if one engine manufacturer can complete the race at 15k rpm, and another at 12k rpm ” max” then so be it, thats racing. In time the manufactures would find the balance, ie too much fuel = stopping before they reach the flag, too much fuel = more power & more heat, ” already a problem” with subsequent aero problems, pace the race on a quick sprint & cruise basis = tyre temp issues Its for the engine manufacturers & teams to find the answers on how to get their cars to the flag in the quickest way possible utilising the 100kg of fuel. So come on FIA, swallow your pride for now, & wait for technology that will assure 100% accuracy, your ” wet dream can still happen one day ! Until then, bin these trash flow sensors & lets go racing, because without this issue, my bet is that this new formula could turn out out some pretty exciting racing Regards DB. ps kevw & stv feel free to NOT reply i don,t have the time for extended debate.

  • DCloudy777

    Officer, you can’t write me a speeding ticket. My speedometer clearly read that I was only doing 35!

    The fuel flow rule is ridiculous, but it is the rule, and RB was warned multiple times about using their sensor. I have absolutely no sympathy for them.