Toto Wolff 'disturbed' after FIA 'cite' Mercedes personnel in Ferrari case

Two Mercedes team members were reportedly cited by FIA as triggering their investigation into Ferrari's car

3y ago

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff says he is "disturbed" that two Silver Arrows team members were reportedly cited by the FIA as triggering their investigation into the legality of the Ferrari.

The governing body confirmed ahead of the Monaco GP that they were satisfied that the Ferrari car conformed to the regulations after investigating the Italian team's ERS unit.

FIA technical delegate Charlie Whiting was quoted saying the enquiry "came from a Ferrari engine man now at Mercedes", with the Mail on Sunday reporting: 'Whiting identified the 'Ferrari engine man' as Lorenzo Sassi, and, more explosively, revealed that the matter was brought to the FIA's attention by Mercedes' technical director James Allison prior to the fourth race of the season in Baku.'

It is that public disclosure which has concerned Wolff.

"One of my roles is to protect my people and if certain individuals are named in the wrong context, then that is disturbing," Wolff said.

"Teams question the FIA every single day. I think it's not important to put it out that this person has questioned a legality topic. If you say a certain team has done that, then it is perfectly fine, that is modus operandi. Picking out individuals isn't the right thing."

Wolff confirmed he has expressed those sentiments to the FIA in person, but declined to elaborate on those discussions.

But the boss of F1's world champions also stressed that, following the FIA's statement declaring the Ferrari to be legal, he considered the matter to be closed.

"No judgement has been made on anything, no protest has been lodged, it's just a press statement," said Wolff. "We trust them. If they have looked at things, then it's fine."

Wolff also added that he did not believe Mercedes raising questions about the Ferrari car would damage the relationship between the two teams.

FIA explain Ferrari clearance

Speaking to Sky Sports F1 ahead of the Monaco race, Whiting told Ted Kravitz: "We first heard something from a team shortly before Baku. When we hear things like that, usually from teams who have taken employees from another team, we were asked to look at a certain aspect on the Ferrari.

"This happens quite a lot. We did and we have always been looking at data to make sure cars are not using more power than they should be. In this particular case, the data looked a little unusual, it was very difficult to explain. But Ferrari use a different energy store to anybody else, and it's much more complex so it took us a little while to work our way through it to explain the anomalies.

"The main point is that the team is responsible for satisfying us that their car complies. We failed to be satisfied, we didn't really have enough to go to the stewards with and say the car doesn't comply, but we just worked through it with Ferrari as we have with other teams.

"They've made a few changes to the software to the car and now we've looked at that and seen how the car ran on the first day of practice we were entirely satisfied."

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Comments (2)

  • I think he's got a point here

      3 years ago
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      3 years ago