Ferrari team principle Mattia Binotto has revealed how he believes the technical directive the FIA introduced last week in Canada was a ‘mistake.’
The technical directive that was announced by the FIA was an attempt to reduce the impact of the ‘porpoising’ of the cars which is causing severe pain for the drivers in the race.
This initiative from the FIA was believed to try and ‘formulate a metric to measure the vertical acceleration loads of the cars and force teams who are affected the most to dial out the bouncing.’
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Ahead of the Canadian Grand Prix, the FIA gave teams an option to add a second stay to strengthen the floor, a solution that was found on the Mercedes cars during Friday practice in Montreal.
However, Mercedes soon removed the ‘second stay’ as they discovered that they could be investigated by other teams for the change to their car setup.
There are further meetings that are scheduled ahead of the Silverstone Grand Prix to decide how to properly combat the issues ‘porpoising’ is creating, but Binotto believes the FIA have already made a ‘mistake’ regardless.
He said: “For us it's that technical directives are not applicable. The reasons they are not applicable is that a TD is there to clarify regulations or to somehow to address policing, but a TD is not there to change the regulations. You cannot change the regulation through a TD. And that's governance.
“Even on safety grounds, what can the FIA do? It's to first have a consultation with the TAC [technical advisory committee], change the regulations and go straight to the world council for a formal approval of the change the regulations without having the approval of the teams on safety grounds.
“But you do not change the regulations with a TD. So that's why we sent that to FIA, for us these TDs were not applicable. As a matter of fact, I think that they have been issued by mistake, I think first the metric has not been applied. The extra brackets have been not fitted in any car for the weekend. So a big noise for nothing.”
The team who has suffered the most with the ‘porpoising’ issues arguably is Mercedes, with Lewis Hamilton in particular showing significant physical pain, whilst driving in Azerbaijan last week as he gingerly got out of his car.
Mercedes team principle has said the backlash they have received from other teams regarding their issue of ‘porpoising’ was “pitiful”, but Binotto doesn’t believe it is an urgent problem at the moment.
He revealed: “Porpoising, it's something that we need to tackle for the future and try to reduce it, and we need to do that through maybe technical change. In saying that, to date it has not been such an issue.
“It's track related. I think the cars are developed; they will be developed as well. It's a technical issue that needs to be discussed and how we do that, I think for me it's an open question.”
There was an initial meeting between the team principles in Montreal at the weekend ahead of the Canadian Grand Prix, but Red Bull team principle Christian Horner doesn’t think it was particularly beneficial.
He told “I think there was an element of theatre going on in that meeting. So you know, maybe with Lewis's new movie coming along, [they're] getting him enrolled for it.
“There is a process of these things to be introduced. I think what was particularly disappointing was the second stay, because it has to be discussed in a technical forum. And that is overtly biased to sorting one team's problems out, which was the only team that turned up here with it even in advance of the TD. So work that one out.”
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