Site logo

Renault protests Racing Point

NEWS STORY
12/07/2020

Just over two hours after today's Styrian Grand Prix, the stewards summoned representatives of the Racing Point team and its drivers after Renault lodged an official protest.

"We confirm that Renault DP World F1 Team has submitted a request to the stewards of the event for clarification on the legality of the Racing Point RP20," said the French team in a brief statement.

"We have no further comment on this matter until the Stewards have arrived at a decision."

Such a protest was expected ahead of the original season opener in Melbourne following the pace of the Racing Points in pre-season testing.

Though the RP20 is widely seen as a 'clone' of last year's Mercedes, the Silverstone-based outfit has continually denied this. Indeed, it has previously sought clarification from the FIA.

While technical director Andrew Green admits to being influenced by the Mercedes he insists he started off with a blank piece of paper and no intellectual property of the German team's was used.

"We designed the car from scratch," he said ahead of pre-season testing when concerns were first raised, "starting from almost a blank sheet of paper - which is very exciting, because the team hasn't been in a position to do this in a very long time.

"We've applied everything that we've learnt over the past seasons," he added, "combined this with what we've seen adopted by some of our competitors, and we've given it our best shot at optimising the final season of these present regulations."

As the pace of the car became all too clear during testing, he dismissed the claims that the car was a clone of the Mercedes and that his team had received assistance from the German team.

"Absolutely, categorically, all those designs are Racing Point's, from absolute scratch," he told Sky Sports. "There has been no transfer of information on this car from Mercedes. They would never contemplate it, we would never ask for it. It's absolutely outside the regulations, it would never happen. We haven't tried in any way, shape or form to try and circumvent the regulations.

"What you see is what people have drawn from looking at pictures of Mercedes," he admitted, "the same as anyone else could have done, and I think they've done a cracking job to be honest.

"We've utilised what we can see," he continued, "we know how sensitive teams are to other teams taking pictures... there's a pitlane full of photographers there all employed by the teams to take pictures of other people's things, all we did was to utilise that information. Information that we had, information that everyone else had, so no difference."

However, when asked about the philosophy behind the RP20, he admitted that, in this particular department, Mercedes was in the mix.

"We wanted to fix something that had been haunting us for many years," he said. "We started development on this concept back in 2014, something like that. From that point on, although we were adding performance to the car and the car was getting better it had this underlying Achilles heel that we were really struggling to get rid of.

"We tried so many updates last year to try and sort the car out, and yes we made some improvements, the car was getting better, by the time we got to Abu Dhabi the car was reasonable, we were fighting for fourth in the team rankings, which is where we wanted to be. But the gains we were making were getting slower and slower and slower and the fundamental characteristic of the car wasn't changing.

"So, around the middle of last year we questioned what we were doing, questioned where we were going, we questioned the fact that there is only one more year left with these regulations. So, whatever we do this year, we're throwing it away, 2021 is completely different.

"So, we've got an opportunity here, what shall we do, shall we do something different or shall we carry on doing what we've been doing for the last five years?

"Everyone agreed, let's do something different, let's try something different, let's throw away what we've done before, let's start with a clean sheet of paper, let's do something new.

"So where do we start? Well, we start with the fact that we've got a Mercedes power unit, we've got a Mercedes gearbox... and one thing about the Mercedes gearbox... we're running a Mercedes 2019 gearbox because we've always run a year behind Mercedes... it does limit what you can do with the ride height of the car, the suspension geometry is basically designed for Mercedes to run that philosophy of a low rake car and they weren't going to change that for us or for anyone so we decided 'why don't we try and join them, let's go that route, let's see where it leads us'.

"And at that point we did, we tore up everything we knew about high rake car and the philosophy we'd been running for the last few years and started again, started afresh. It was a big risk, it is a big risk, it's a massive risk to not just take someone's concept but to understand it and develop it. It's a huge risk, and I've got a lot of faith in the team back in Brackley to deliver what we've got now, I think it's a credit to them, a massive credit."

Check out our Race Day gallery from Spielberg, here.

LATEST NEWS

more news >

RELATED ARTICLES

LATEST IMAGES

galleries >

  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images

POST A COMMENT

or Register for a Pitpass ID to have your say

Please note that all posts are reactively moderated and must adhere to the site's posting rules and etiquette.

Post your comment

READERS COMMENTS

 

No comments posted as yet, would you like to be the first to have your say?

Share this page

X

Copyright © Pitpass 2002 - 2020. All rights reserved.

about us  |  advertise  |  contact  |  privacy & security  |  rss  |  terms