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Seven teams issue legal threat after secret Ferrari-FIA deal

Mat Coch

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Thursday 5th March, 2020 - 8:37am

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Ferrari and the FIA agreed a secret deal following a 2019 power unit investigation

Seven of Formula 1’s 10 teams have banded together to issue a joint statement condemning a secret deal cut between Ferrari and the FIA.

Late last month an agreement was reached between the team and the sport’s governing body following investigations into its 2019 engine.

At the time a brief, two paragraph statement from the FIA on the matter said, in part, “The specifics of the agreement will remain between the parties.”

Suspicions last year had surrounded Ferrari’s power unit, which saw the team enjoy a notable straight line speed advantage until clarifications later in the year were made.

Following the release of the FIA’s statement, all non-Ferrari powered teams banded together to express their dissatisfaction at the resolution.

The statement from the team reads:

We, the undersigned teams, were surprised and shocked by the FIA’s statement of Friday 28 February regarding the conclusion of its investigation into the Scuderia Ferrari Formula 1 Power Unit.

An international sporting regulator has the responsibility to act with the highest standards of governance, integrity and transparency.

After months of investigations that were undertaken by the FIA only following queries raised by other teams, we strongly object to the FIA reaching a confidential settlement agreement with Ferrari to conclude this matter.

Therefore, we hereby state publicly our shared commitment to pursue full and proper disclosure in this matter, to ensure that our sport treats all competitors fairly and equally. We do so on behalf of the fans, the participants and the stakeholders of Formula One.

In addition, we reserve our rights to seek legal redress, within the FIA’s due process and before the competent courts.

McLaren Racing Limited
Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix Limited
Racing Point UK Limited
Red Bull Racing Limited
Renault Sport Racing Limited
Scuderia Alpha Tauri S.p.A.
Williams Grand Prix Engineering Limited

Teams have taken this approach because formal avenues of appeal have closed, given the issue relates to the previous season.

The governance of the sport is such that there are specific timeframes during which protests must be lodged, all of which have now elapsed.

There is therefore no recourse available to teams beyond either pressuring the FIA into providing more detail or taking legal action.

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