Many drivers, during or after the Azerbaijan Grand Prix, have expressed concern about the porpoise and / or excessive tailgating of the Formula 1 cars of the 2022 version. Among them, the Mercedes drivers, the car of which it is among the most affected by these phenomena. , Lewis Hamilton has suffered a lot from his back during the race in Baku.
This, together with the consultation of experts and doctors, has led the FIA to take a series of first steps to try to circumscribe what is perceived as a potential risk to health and safety, whether short, medium or long. long term. These measures were announced through a Technical Directive published before the Canadian GP.
On the one hand, this document provides for the future implementation of a system for measuring vertical oscillations that requires teams that exceed a certain threshold to act so that this does not happen again. On the other hand, awkwardly, it also offers the possibility for teams to make specific modifications to the slabs, either in terms of thickness or the addition of reinforcement. However, this second part being in direct contradiction with the technical regulations, these provisions are currently almost inapplicable due to the risk of claim.
Some team leaders – one of the most vocal on the subject has been Christian Horner, who had already shown his opposition in principle to these measures – expressed their dissatisfaction or at least their surprise, particularly with regard to the time of the publication of the directive. But beyond that, some observers wondered if swing control would not, once implemented, be especially costly for Mercedes, whose W13 struggles to limit its rebounds for its height.
Speaking of Motorsport.com On this issue, Helmut Marko said that the threat of an FIA intervention to force the teams that suffer the most to ride F1 in another way was precisely what could undermine the current performance of Mercedes. This leads him to state that these measures are the opposite of the goal pursued by the German team, despite the statements of Toto Wolff stating that it was necessary “Protect the stables from themselves”.
“Exactly”said the Red Bull leader. “In German, we say: ‘der Schuss ging nach hinten los’ [que l’on peut traduire par ‘le coup s’est retourné contre eux’, ndlr]. So it was counterproductive to Mercedes. “
Helmut Marko with Christian Horner
Despite the health issue, the statements of several drivers from different teams and a regulation that would potentially allow teams to continue to place athletes in physical danger, Marko persists in the idea that the FIA should be kept out of this issue. in sight. of the disparities on the grid.
“I totally agree with Max. [Verstappen]it’s not okay to change something like that during the season. It cannot be the FIA making our adjustments. Changing the gear height means changing the settings and the FIA cannot. Secondly, I think all of this is the result of a team’s problems. This team should solve its own problems and not affect other teams. “
Meetings being held this week on the subject to try to find a compromise, however, may not give Red Bull as much respite as the seemingly innocuous Montreal Technical Board. For Marko, the federation must provide more details anyway: “I think there are too many parameters that aren’t clear yet. So I think the FIA needs to make another clarification.”
With Ronald Vording and Jonathan Noble