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FIA agrees controversial settlement with Ferrari

NEWS STORY
28/02/2020

At a time Racing Point is raising eyebrows in the F1 paddock over the legality of its car, a curious statement from the FIA in relation to Ferrari is sure to spark further controversy.

"The FIA announces that, after thorough technical investigations, it has concluded its analysis of the operation of the Scuderia Ferrari Formula 1 Power Unit and reached a settlement with the team," said the sport's governing body in a statement issued in the final moments of pre-season testing.

"The specifics of the agreement will remain between the parties," it added.

"The FIA and Scuderia Ferrari have agreed to a number of technical commitments that will improve the monitoring of all Formula 1 Power Units for forthcoming championship seasons as well as assist the FIA in other regulatory duties in Formula 1 and in its research activities on carbon emissions and sustainable fuels."

The statement relates to investigations into Ferrari's 2019 power unit which looked set to dominate the second half of the season until the FIA was forced to issue a number of technical directives after Red Bull - and others - questioned its legality.

Though Ferrari insisted the power unit was legal, the team's performance subsequently dropped off, in some cases quite alarmingly.

However it is the fact that the "specifics of the agreement will remain private" between the FIA and Ferrari and that both parties have "reached a settlement" that is certain to cause reaction from rivals, for the failure to give any further insight clearly suggests that there was an issue with the legality of the power unit.

The core of the issue was fuel flow, with rivals claiming that the Maranello outfit was using a fuel sensor which allowed more fuel to be delivered to the power unit. At a time Max Verstappen openly accused Ferrari of "cheating", the only time the Italian team was hauled up before the stewards was in Abu Dhabi when the team was fined €50,000 for incorrectly declaring how much fuel was on board Charles Leclerc’s car.

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1. Posted by Spartacus, 05/03/2020 17:09

"Of course the "fuel flow" discrepancy was not explained in detail which should be released for all the engineers to sift through. Pretty interesting how the FIA police these matters. F1 is about maximum exploitation of the rules and how to benefit from loopholes/grey area if you can find any!"

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2. Posted by Stitch431, 04/03/2020 8:44

"I just read an article that states that the secret deal was that the Ferrari has been forced to build an entirely new engine for this year as there were some "grey areas" in the one from last year. The fact alone, that they (Ferrari) had to build a new engine clearly means that it can't be a gray area. Ferrari would really not build a new engine if there was no proof, black on white, that the engine is not in accordance with the rules. Any other team would be severely punished. Ferrari is told that they have to build a new engine, but instead of being stripped of their clearly illegally gained points, poles and race wins (remember MacLaren's punishment?), they hacked out a deal with the FIA that they will get insight of the technical data from their competitor's engines, to see if they maybe do something that is not according to the rules too! Thus gaining an unprecedented advantage over all the others. They are being rewarded instead of punished. Scandalous!!! Chase Carey, if you let this happen, it will be the total loss of investment of Liberty Media."

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3. Posted by Superbird70, 29/02/2020 19:38

"I think it may be the other way around. FIA found the engine modifications to be legal and the agreement is to not disclose the technical information to the other teams."

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4. Posted by The edge, 29/02/2020 8:45

"F errari I nternational A ssistance, never more than a phone call away"

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5. Posted by imejl99, 28/02/2020 18:20

"Racing Point clone car, Ferrari engine, Mercedes with DAS, best season start in years :)"

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6. Posted by Batman, 28/02/2020 18:11

"I read it like this: We FIA will communicate the analysis results to the team's technical representatives, one by one, but not to the press. I maybe wrong but that's what it seems to me. Other than that, it will be an authentic war declaration, or sort of."

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7. Posted by Barslug, 28/02/2020 18:04

"Ferrari: Well, we got caught cheating. I’ll make you a deal FIA. We help you catch other cheaters and pay a fine and you keep quiet about it.

FIA: Well, ok but only because you are Ferrari.

Every non Ferrari fan: WHAT??????"

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8. Posted by Anthony, 28/02/2020 17:58

"What is the likelihood of the FIA reaching a confidential “settlement” with any team other than Ferrari?"

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9. Posted by Stitch431, 28/02/2020 17:32

"An absolute nogo of the FIA. It clearly found the motor to be illegal and should state so in public in order not to lose its credibility. In fact, there should be a punishment for the culprit! The fact that the governing body "has reached an agreement with Ferrari" is a clear breach of its impartiality. "

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10. Posted by klmn, 28/02/2020 17:30

"So the cheating is under the carpet now."

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