Mercedes and Renault could protest Ferrari at F1 season opener in Melbourne

21 February, 2014

Ferrari F14T in the spotlight

Ferrari F14T in the spotlight

The possible threat of protest is now looming over next month’s Formula 1 World Championship season opener in Australia, with Mercedes and Renault taking issue with the ultra-lightweight Ferrari engine cover.

We reported a month ago that a dispute was brewing between Formula 1 engine suppliers Ferrari, Mercedes and Renault.

The dispute is about the protective covering on the top of Ferrari’s turbo unit, weighing in at a crucial 3 kilograms lighter than the ones fitted on the Mercedes and Renault units.

Mercedes and Renault argue that Ferrari’s cover needs to be more substantial for safety reasons in the event of a dangerous turbo failure, but Ferrari’s explanation was initially accepted by the governing FIA.

Fernando Alonso in the Ferrari F14 T during Bahrain testing

Fernando Alonso in the Ferrari F14 T during Bahrain testing

Reportedly, Ferrari’s setup mitigates the need for a heavier cover because the turbo shuts down at even the slightest sign of failure.

“Mercedes and Renault are not satisfied that the FIA is satisfied,” said Auto Motor und Sport correspondent Michael Schmidt.

“Either Ferrari builds a stronger cover, or there could be a protest [against the results] in Melbourne,” he added.

Another option is also being considered by Renault and Mercedes: copying the Ferrari solution and thereby saving 3 kilograms in crucial car weight.

“The time until homologation on 28 February is however too short,” Schmidt explained. “In the paddock it is now being reported that Ferrari is strengthening the turbo housing to be on the safe side.” (GMM)

Subbed by AJN.


  • Ankit

    @gp247 I’m convinced now that you guys are drunk while you type an article and post it. SO many really really SILLY mistakes from you. It’s like you guys do not read what your’re typing. It baffles me, really. Be a little more professional please. You have typed, “The dispute is about the protective covering on the top of Ferrari’s turbo unit, weighing in at a crucial 3 kilograms lighter than the ones fitted on the Mercedes and FERRARI units.” Which doesn’t make sense at all. It should be Mercedes and RENAULT units. We follow this site for some quality posts. Please don’t be so careless.

  • gp247

    @Ankit you absolutely correct. We receive these reports from GMM (paid for syndication) unfortunately they make mistakes like most humans do. Our procedure is post their stuff, illustrate with photo and then it is subbed. We try catch the mistakes but some fall through the net. Thanks for highlighting this it is now sorted.

  • gp247

    @Ankit but don’t agree with this: “SO many really really SILLY mistakes from you”

  • Ankit

    I’m sorry for being so hard on you for this but this is really not acceptable. I agree that mistakes happen but not so many. You don’t see this often on other forums and sites, so this cannot be an excuse. Hopefully this doesn’t happen again. Cheers!

  • Ankit

    I’m only telling you about what I’ve read and seen. Other users have pointed it out as well. More than 3 mistakes are “SO many” for me. I’m just helping you sort your stuff out. It’s only more professional.

  • Ankit

    I wouldn’t mind. Send me an email on :)

  • TheDudeson

    Other sites have the same mistake in the report

    and

    agree with Ankit it is annoying for readers

  • hahaha

    Well they can protest all they want. No Ferrari = no F1! Simple as that. Monty is not arro
    gant when he says this, he’s just being realistic. Red Bull drove around for 5 years with an illegal car/can! (flexwings, diffuser, mid-season tyre change advantage+ maybe hidden TC). So they shut it and try to copy or they get out.

  • hahaha

    Ankit, someone who can read will see the mistakes and read around them. You don’t have to criticise GP247 on every article. Just be glad that this site brings a lot of f1 news before many other sites do and FOR FREE (unlike autosport). And like 247 says, humans make mistakes. But I bet you don’t? Don’t forget to check my spelling and correct my mistakes.

  • KevinW

    BP thought they had all the required safeguards in place, right before the platform collapsed into the Gulf of Mexico and millions of barrels of oil spewed into the water. In the NHRA, it was discovered that even the best clutches blow apart like grenades, with disastrous result. Ferrari may think that have some super safety feature in place. Will the FIA take the risk to spectators, and other drivers? Seems a little extra protection weighing 3kg is prudent enough. I’ve seen a turbo come unglued at 100,000 RPM. It went off like a bomb, sending shrapnel and impeller blades everywhere, including embedding bits into the block wall of the dyno room where it blew. Can’t imagine why the FIA would risk that after all the noise being made about increasing driver safety.

  • KevinW

    Are you serious, or is this a joke? On one hand it’s too far beyond reality to be serious, on the other – it’s not funny.

  • Hawk

    yeah right, Ankit reminds me of those nerdy know alls in high school

  • nowhereman

    I’m laughing at everyone for their interest in the turbo cover on the Ferraris.
    Big Red has got them worried this early?

  • KevinW

    Not likely. This is more an issue of the wrangling that goes on early in a new formula, where teams press the limits in some area, while asking for clarifications in others. Ferrari could join the protest of McLaren’s rear suspension aero devices, while being protested over the rear cover protection. In 2012 it was the battle between Lotus (front suspension), Red Bull (hubs, floor holes, ride ht adjuster), Ferrari (front wing oscillation) and Mercedes (front wing involved DRS), etc, all pressing the limits of the rules, all resulting in clarifications or changes. This is not over by a long shot. There are going to be plenty of accusations in official and unofficial channels to keep the media heated up all season long.

  • hahaha

    it’s not serious it’s a fact.

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