Honda’s technical director says he will be able to know after the last race of the year whether the sending of the technical directive by the FIA has had an effect on the Ferrari’s performance.
Since the US Grand Prix, Ferrari’s performance on straight lines has dropped significantly and many believe that this is a direct link to the technical directive sent by the FIA a few days earlier.
Indeed, at the request of the Red Bull Racing team, the FIA sent a technical directive to all teams before the US Grand Prix to remind them that it was absolutely forbidden to circumvent the rules on fuel consumption.
But while it was the Red Bull team that made this request for clarification to the FIA, Helmut Marko, Red Bull’s motorsport advisor, revealed that it was the Mercedes team that made this request.
“Mercedes had done research in this area and we had the courage to make an official request to the FIA. ” Helmut Marko explained to AutoBild.
Since this technical directive was sent, Scuderia Ferrari had not been able to secure pole position in Austin, while the Italian team had been on a good six consecutive pole positions since the Belgian Grand Prix.
Just by chance or a real link with the technical directive? The fact is that Scuderia Ferrari’s competitors did not fail to highlight the strange coincidence, including Max Verstappen, who openly accused Scuderia Ferrari of cheating.
Honda’s Technical Director Toyoharu Tanabe says he will be able to know[via GPS data] after the last race of the season in Abu Dhabi whether Ferrari’s drop in performance is directly linked to the FIA’s technical directive.
“We need to have data from Brazil and Abu Dhabi to find out. “says Toyoharu Tanabe.
“We are not able to separate the aerodynamic support and engine performance, but the difference is less than previous races. So we don’t know if it’s just the engine or the chassis. »
At Ferrari, Scuderia director Mattia Binotto admitted that the SF90 had lost straight-line performance in Austin, but according to him, Maranello’s car equalled its competitors in the corners.
Mattia Binotto explained that Ferrari had decided to adopt an approach with greater downforce for the US Grand Prix, to see how the pace of their car would be affected. This could could partly explain the sudden lack of performance on the straights.