Ferrari has told FIA that porpoising TD is 'not applicable'

© XPB 

Ferrari has contested the validity of the Technical Directive introduced by the FIA last week to combat the porpoising and bouncing of F1 cars, insisting the provision is "not applicable".

The governing body intervened on the grounds of safety in the wake of the concerns expressed by several drivers in Baku, including Mercedes' George Russell and Lewis Hamilton, who fear that the stiff and bumpy ride they endure may lead to long-term physical injuries.

However, Ferrari and Red Bull, who have succeeded in mitigating the porpoising effect on their designs, have called into question the TD's fairness, with the Scuderia arguing its introduction equates to an in-season regulation change that might potentially benefit those teams - and principally Mercedes - that haven't been able to solve the problem on their own.

"For us, that TD’s not applicable," said Binotto in Canada. "And it’s something we mentioned to the FIA.

"A TD is there to clarify regulations, or to address policing. It is not there to change the regulations. That’s [a matter of] governance."

Although the FIA may force through a regulation change on the grounds of safety, a specific process must be adhered to reminded Binotto.

"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."

Indeed, the FIA's TD calls for the establishment of a specific metric that will measure the vertical acceleration of each car while also setting a limit for vertical movement that teams must stay within by eventually raising the ride height of their car.

The directive was not implemented in Canada as Binotto underscored, mainly due to the complexity of formulating the applicable metric. But it is expected to be fully applied at Silverstone next month.

Further up the pitlane, Red Bull motorsport boss Helmut Marko was equally critical of the FIA's intervention in Canada.

"I don’t think the FIA’s decisions are right," Marko told Sky. "One team, Mercedes, has the biggest problems and then they react in the middle of the season.

"There is a simple solution: you just have to raise the car. Then you don’t have this bouncing anymore, but you lose speed.

"The fact that they are now reacting in this way and trying to impose such powers on the FIA, which practically determine the set-up of the cars, is a quick fix that has certainly not been thought through."

According to, Formula 1's technical chiefs are set to meet behind closed doors this week with Nikolas Tombazis, the FIA's single seater technical director, to find a common ground on which to solve the porpoising controversy.

"I think the political manoeuvring that has been going on doesn't consider what is at the core of this topic," said Mercedes boss Toto Wolff whose team is at the center of the controversy.

"At the core of this topic is that since the beginning of the season, race drivers have been complaining about pain to drive these cars: back pain, blurred vision, we're talking about micro concussions and people giving their feedback in literally every team.

"This is something we just need to tackle: whatever the solution is and whatever technically can be implemented to go in that direction.

"We need to be aware that this is not about cutting a winglet that is an advantage for a team, or a double diffuser. It is that all of us team principals and teams: we have the responsibility to not take this lightly."

Keep up to date with all the F1 news via Facebook and Twitter