Why Was The Protest From Ferrari Against Red Bull Dismissed By The FIA? – WTF1
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Why Was The Protest From Ferrari Against Red Bull Dismissed By The FIA?

It was a wild twist to an already chaotic Monaco Grand Prix: Ferrari protesting both Red Bull drivers after their win and a third-place finish in the principality. After what felt like the longest wait, BOTH cases were dismissed by the FIA Stewards – but why?

During the hearing, representatives from both Red Bull and Ferrari were present alongside F1 Race Director Eduardo Freitas. 

Sergio Perez’s case was fairly easy. The decision document stated that “Ferrari conceded that [Perez’s car] did not have any part of its front or rear tyres on the left of the yellow line and conceded that the protest was unfounded.” 

However, Max’s incident was a little more complex. 

WHAT DID FERRARI CLAIM?

Ferrari claimed that “on the exit from the pits on lap 23, [Verstappen’s car] put part of its left front and rear tyres on the tarmac on the LEFT side of the yellow line.”

The Scuderia also believed that this was in breach of the Race Director’s Event Notes and that similar actions had previously resulted in a penalty being applied. An example of Yuki Tsunoda in Austria last year was also referenced in the document.

Ferrari also claimed that the Race Director Event Notes “indicate to the teams how they are to act and the teams abide by them” even if they contradict the International Sporting Code.

HOW DID RED BULL REACT?

However, Red Bull argued back that Max’s car was still to the right of the yellow line and that “there was no breach of the International Sporting Code”. 

WHAT DID THE RACE DIRECTOR SAY?

Freitas, who was on his second weekend of the job, referenced that “Article 5 of Appendix L of the ISC had changed from 2021 to 2022”.

In an embarrassing twist, he also revealed that his Event Notes from the weekend had been a “cut and paste” from the 2021 version and hadn’t been “changed to reflect the 2022 Appendix L changes.” 

Awks

WHAT WAS THE DECISION OF THE PARTIES?

Red Bull, Ferrari and the Race Director agreed that Max did have part of his front left and rear tyre on the left-hand side of the yellow line, and that most of the left front and left rear tyres of that car remained on the yellow line.

HOW DID MAX GET AWAY WITH IT?

The Stewards also reviewed a similar incident from last year’s Monaco GP involving Lance Stroll but determined the following:

  1. Article 2.1 of the 2022 Formula One Sporting Regulations provides that “All…officials..undertake to observe all the provisions of …the Code, …..the Formula One Sporting Regulations…”.
  2. This places an obligation on the Race Director (and the Stewards) to comply with those regulations.
  3. Accordingly, the Notes issued by the Race Director cannot contradict the Code or the Formula One Sporting Regulations.
  4. Article 5 c) of Chapter IV of Appendix L of the Code stipulates that at the pit exit a car “must not cross” the line.
  5. In this case, the car did not “cross” the line – to do so it would have needed to have a full wheel to the left of the yellow line.
  6. Accordingly the driver did not breach the relevant section of the Code and this takes precedent over any interpretation of the Notes.

Do you think Verstappen should have been penalised for the incident? Let us know in the comments below.

22 thoughts on “Why Was The Protest From Ferrari Against Red Bull Dismissed By The FIA?

  • It’s not that there must be a penalty against Red Bull, the only important thing is that it is made clear how the rule works.
    During the race, all experts on my local broadcast were sure that a car may not touch the line at all…

    • Here we go again. What do the rules say? Now what you think the rules say? Now what do you think the proper interpretation of the rules should be?

      There is only one important question and that is the first one. “Car must not cross the line.” Did the car cross the line?

        • Alessandro Butti says:

          the tyre did not cross the line, but in ALL previous cases it was stated that since it was a grey zone of the rule the panalties would be deployed as the tyre touches the line. From ALL the previous cases the rule applies as there has to be space between the line and any part of the car.

          Feel free to check

          • Alessandro Butti says:

            the rule was rewritten BUT there was a memorandum from the race director in the morning of the GP (that HAS discrectionality, as we all have seen from the last race of 2021, OVER the rules) where he has written to all pilots and teams that for this GP “you have to stay completely on the right of the line”. STOP.

            2 weights
            2 measures

            in addition a consideration of mine: lets use a little of logic, that line is there NOT to be trespassed at all, since is for the safety of who is on the track. It doesn’t matter if is trespassed of 1mm, 1 cm, 35cm (AS HERE): it should NOT be trespassed.

    • Here we go again. What do the rules say? Now what you think the rules say? Now what do you think the proper interpretation of the rules should be?

      There is only one important question and that is the first one. “Car must not cross the line.” Did the car cross the line?

  • Jason Malcolm says:

    Lets see if drivers start riding that line now they know they are allowed to as long as the outside tyres don’t cross it fully.
    Surely it would be clearer to just have it so you can’t touch that line.
    Leaving the rules to interpretation is what causes all this unnecessary drama. If you touch the line reprimand or penalty whatever but this sort of thing where the result you get at the chequered flag can change is just frustrating.

    • I don’t think it’s up to interpretation, if the rules state you cannot cross the line then simply touching it is not crossing it. To cross something you have to be fully on the other side of it. You didn’t cross a road if you are in the middle of it, you crossed it when you are on the other side of it. Simple as that imo.

      • Jason Malcolm says:

        I see where you are coming from but to me crossing it is any part of the vehicle being beyond it. Even if it is only half a tyre.
        If i’m driving B roads and it’s a solid white line I am not allowed to cross that line. I would be fined if the police caught me driving with my tyre sitting on that line.

        At what point do you decide a car has crossed it? If only the tyre is over the line 75% of the car still hasn’t crossed it so you’re in the middle of the line so that should be ok?

        Tbh I don’t think he should of got a penalty regardless really. I’m not a fan of Max but I don’t believe it was intentional at all it was wet conditions and going to be a challenge. It should also of at the very least been acknowledged by Race Control.
        I’m just not a fan of the wording of the rules as to me there is interpretation there.

        • I think a better comparison would be to the rule that gets your laptime deleted when you CROSS the white line in a particular corner. It’s always checking if your ENTIRE wheel is over the line. If a small portion of the wheel touches the white line, it’s not crossing it, and your lap time stands. I dont think there were any discussions about this rule. Why now about this one?

          • Jason Malcolm says:

            Very good point and a far more relevant comparison to mine.
            I can definitely see Max exploiting this rule at some point in the season now he knows he can ride the line. He clearly looks for any slight advantage no matter the scenario so if he can have his car slightly further over on the the pit lane exit to get a better entry to the first corner he’ll be all over that.
            Look at him with the safety car restarts. Rule says you can not pass the front car and nothing about being along side and they had to adjust the rule to prevent him doing it.

          • ฬ๏ยtєг 🇺🇦 says:

            There’s a small flaw in this comparison as with track limit it’s deemed to have croosed the line if the entire car is over the white line with all 4 wheels. In this case it’s only the first 2 tires.

        • I don’t think it was intentional either. The back end stepped out to the left, he corrected the skid, and that correction took the left side to the line.

      • Alessandro Butti says:

        so as soon the whole russian army is not in Ucraina, Russia has not trespassed the border??

        AH!

        • Weird comparation but ok. No you are wrong, we are not talking about the whole car here, we are talking about single wheel. To compare it to your comparation: An Army is the whole car, a wheel is a single unit of that army (unit = soldier, tank, …).

    • Jason Malcolm says:

      Completely agree. Why have a grey area when you can make it black and white. It’s a simple rule to change too as it can be based on safety grounds.

  • ฬ๏ยtєг 🇺🇦 says:

    I’m a fan of Max and in this case with the rules as they are he was right not to get penalized. Having said that, I think to make it absolutely clear they should change it into: “The competitor driving in and out of the pit needs to stay inside the pit lane entrance and exit at all times with no part of his car touching the boundary line.” That way there is no discussion as to how far a tire can cross and it’s also safer for cars on track on the other side of that line. Also by placing fixed cameras, infringements can be handled with the so called slam-dunk 5 second penalties (and maybe a 10 second or drive through penalty if crossing the line actually causes a dangerous situation with another car)

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