2014 Rolex Australian Grand Prix

Discussion in 'Motorsport' started by Cap'n Jack, Mar 11, 2014.

  1. prisonermonkeys

    prisonermonkeys Premium

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    Deliberate, yes, but what about the intention behind the act? Was it because they intended on cheating, or because they thought they knew better?

    You won't find a bigger critic of Red Bull than me. I have long felt that they have abused the rules and gotten away with it because it is technically legal. And as we have seen, they are already trying to spin it into a non-existent issue to avoid being put under the microscope themselves. They have already got the Australian media on-side; the Herald-Sun ran a headline reading GRAND FARCE that made Ricciardo's disqualification out to be a result of a team innocently breaching an obscure part of the rules by trying to do the right thing.

    Honestly, I think any appeal they make is doomed to failure because they ignored the stewards, and even if they prove that Ricciardo never went over 100kg/hr. But I would rather see them punished for the rules they actually broke. If they tried to cheat, then they should be hung out to dry. A two- or three-race ban ought to do it. But if the fuel consumption was too high because they made a mistake in the calculations, then disqualify them for the rules they actually broke on purpose, and let sleeping dogs lie on the rest.

    Part of me would like to believe that the FIA and the teams saw something like this coming. A week before the race, Charlie Whiting said that there would be zero tolerance on fuel consumption, and Luca di Montezemolo implored the FIA to crack down on anyone they thought was trying to exploit the rules.
     
  2. TenEightyOne

    TenEightyOne

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    No, they're also restricted to the maximum amount of fuel they can put through the engine at any one time. If the FIA didn't do that you'd potentially have a car spaffing fuel to re-harvest for half a lap and coasting for the other half, it might sound extreme but if that represented the optimum lap then it's exactly what the teams would do.

    I wonder if IRBR have tried to do something that they feel 'breaks' the test, or that exploits enough doubts to be unprovable? Sometimes F1 development is about half-breaking a rule (see Brawn's rear hole for an excellent example).

    Here's the FIA story, as expected it's a bit more complicated than IRBR are saying. Each sensor is identified and individually calibrated. IRBR are using an inconsistency from its first runs to question the consistency of all its later runs (which were all consistent).

    The FIA instructed a fuel flow offset during the race which IRBR ignored, continuing to use their own method of fuel monitoring despite a previous technical directive to the contrary.

    On balance of those facts they were excluded from the race. Sounds like this has been going on behind-the-scenes for a while now.

    I think the appeal will hinge on whether or not IRBR should have "blindly followed all the FIA instructions despite knowing how silly they were given that the sensor was faulty", clearly IRBR are going to say they contravened the instructions because they knew their data was good. A cynic would say that they seized the chance of an "un-police-able" sensor to do some nifty RB footwork.

    Hard to say this time, I too am no fan of IRBR, rules is rules, the stewards did the right thing at the track (thereby allowing later technical appeals), but this is a strange one. I still think they were up to something nefarious, I just don't believe they can be penalised unless the FIA have some other supportable technical evidence.

    FIA Release

    Stewards' Decisions (Ricciardo is #56)
     
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2014
  3. DNW

    DNW

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    AFAIK, correct. But the point is, if one car's sensor is giving a correct reading, and another car's sensor is overstating the fuel flow, the first car effectively has a potential advantage. The 2nd car could never get up to the full 100kg/h, because when it's running at say 90kg/h, the FIA's sensor is already saying it's at 100kg/h. To be within the rules, they'd have to hold back.
     
  4. TenEightyOne

    TenEightyOne

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    I was indeed wrong, was just editing :D

    As you can see, the FIA instructed an offset for the sensor. The sensors are individually calibrated (and presumably controlled within the same barcode system as all other pieces ferme).
     
  5. prisonermonkeys

    prisonermonkeys Premium

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    That's correct. The sensors also have a degree of tolerance for anomalous events. The FIA are not saying how much tolerance they are willing to accept, but they obviously don't want to find themselves in a situation where a driver overrides the MGU-H to get immediate power and he inadvertently goes over 100kg/hr while the ECU tries to compensate, and thus gets disqualified. After all, the stewards' statement clearly points out that direct control over the fuel flow is beyond the driver.

    Perhaps a fairer way of doing things would be to restore Ricciardo's podium, but award no points for second place, and to consider the car disqualified from the WCC. Although that would be a messy situation.
     
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  6. niky

    niky Moderator

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    I sort of agree with Famine, and I would fully support a penalty to be applied to the next race. Starting from the pits, for example. To completely overturn race results after the event is a bit extreme.
     
  7. DNW

    DNW

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    Yep, I've read through the releases 'n' whatnot. On one hand I agree with you, the stewards probably made the right calls over the weekend as to how go about dealing with it with the tools they had available. They can only follow the procedures that have been laid out. On the other hand, I can kinda see RB's point of view. If they backed off to suit what they believed were incorrect figures and lost the 2nd position as a result, there'd be no chance a post-race, "We could have gone faster, give us the 2nd position," would get them anywhere. I would think the stronger position would be for them to take the position and then argue about it afterwards (making a big deal of it along the way), probably hoping to prove themselves right, keep the race result and the points and maybe just cop a fine for the fact that they did still go against the FIA.

    I'm not really too bothered about the whole Red Bull or Ricciardo aspects of the whole thing. I'm more bothered that this is even a possible issue. It's a control component. It should be the exact same thing for everyone across the whole field. We're talking about teams that spend hundreds of millions a year to go racing, yet their competitiveness could be ruined by a third-party FIA specified control part.
     
  8. TenEightyOne

    TenEightyOne

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    If you can engineer parts to closer tolerances than the top vehicle prototypers in the world then you should go for it :D

    As with all "control" parts there are slightly different rates and tolerances for each, these are recorded per-parts, that ensures that people across the field get as close to the same part as possible. Bearing in mind that teams will sometimes choose to run as close to the flow limit as possible we might be talking about the most miniscule difference, not a huge number.

    IRBR did contravene the rules, they did contravene a technical directive, they did choose to ignore the technical delegate's instruction during the race. They don't deny those things, as far as I'm aware. Their argument is that they were forced to use their own monitoring system (not one that operates to the FIA's satisfaction, something that will be relevant in the appeal) to manage the engine. The FIA sensor is provably unreliable, they say, on the basis of erratic readings in its early runs, although they accept that it was consistent from Run 4 (whenever that was).

    They basically accept that there's a control offset for the part, that isn't a problem or in dispute. They're questioning the overall reliability of that specifically-numbered component rather than the system in general.

    I'm not interested in the fact that this is IRBR either, I'd just like to see it resolved to the satisfaction and confidence of the teams.
     
  9. prisonermonkeys

    prisonermonkeys Premium

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    But then you get a situation where teams deliberately break the rules in order to take advantage of getting a penalty in the next race. For example, they could completely replace the power unit without getting a penalty for it.

    It might have been wiser for the FIA to give Ricciardo some kind of stop/go penalty when it became obvious that the team would not revert to the sensor. And if they continued, give them another stop/go.

    Unfortunately, there is no easy solution to this. Disqualification is hardly ideal, but it is justified, given that Red Bull showed no intention of following the FIA's instructions, even though the FIA allowed them every opportunity to do so. No doubt Red Bull thought they could convince the FIA to overlook the way they ignored the instructions if they could prove the sensor was faulty. I suppose that's what the FIA gets for being lenient with them in the past. I have to wonder how this might have played out if the FIA had disqualified Red Bull for their throttle maps in 2012. Yes, that was eighteen months ago, but the FIA had to rewrite the rules four separate times (floor holes in Monaco, manual-adjust suspension in Canada, throttle maps in Germany, and flexible wings in Hungary) because of what Red Bull were doing.
     
  10. niky

    niky Moderator

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    And this time, Red Bull were found afoul of an existing rule in totality.

    Yeah, there's really no easy way out of this one.
     
  11. Turbo_snail

    Turbo_snail

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    I reckon if Ricciardo started a petition, enough drivers would back him to let him keep the podium.
     
  12. prisonermonkeys

    prisonermonkeys Premium

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    Yes, there is: let the disqualification stand. This is not like any of the above examples I quoted, where they escaped further action because they had observed the letter of the law, even if they trampled on the spirit. But here, as you say, they have clearly broken a rule. They can talk until they're blue in the face about the fuel consumption, but they can't escape the fact that they took it upon themselves to disregard the sensor when they rules clearly say that only the stewards can do that.

    It's a hard lesson to learn, least of all because Ricciardo is a popular driver, and his result was just as popular, coming at a time when public interest in the sport is at a high. Red Bull have no-one to blame but themselves, but the FIA cannot afford to back down on this one. If they do, it will pretty much give Red Bull a licence to do as they please.

    What Red Bull are trying to do by turning this on the FIA is wrong. They are the ones who should be embarrassed by it all.

    It wouldn't make an iota of difference. The FIA have to enforce the rules based on what the rules say, not based on what would be the most popular outcome.
     
  13. Dodzzz

    Dodzzz

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    Now there is a new drama..

    Aussie organisers consider suing for lack of sexiness

    I'm glad I'm not the only one thinking that less people would pay for the ticket.
    Although I must admit, I enjoyed the tyre squealing sound thanks to the quieter engine sound.
    And the effect of new rule changes help me forget about the engine sounds throughout the race!
     
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  14. prisonermonkeys

    prisonermonkeys Premium

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    I can tell you exactly where that came from: the Herald-Sun, who hate the Grand Prix with a passion. No doubt they asked a few leading questions about the noise, then spun the answers to make out that the organisers would sue for breach of contract.

    Ironically, last year they were trying to get rid of the race because it was too noisy.
     
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  15. HKS racer

    HKS racer (Banned)

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    It's a rule. Eventually a weird one but other teams respected it and Redbull gained an unfair advantage over opponents (nothing new to be honest). FIA can't close booth eyes everytime.
     
  16. Grayfox

    Grayfox

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    I think 2015 is the last time F1 will race at albert park as that is when the contract ends.
    Currently it has not been resigned.
    I hope it doesn't get resigned for albert park, but gets signed for Adelaide.

    Classic F1 track.
     
  17. prisonermonkeys

    prisonermonkeys Premium

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    It has not been signed, because they have only just started talking about it - and they have two years to sort it out.

    Adelaide cannot handle Formula 1.
     
  18. Grayfox

    Grayfox

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    Reason?

    I would love to see it back there.
     
  19. jimipitbull

    jimipitbull

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    Too many stoners, it spins them out.
     
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  20. prisonermonkeys

    prisonermonkeys Premium

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    The facilities and safety of the circuit are not up to FIA Grade-1 standards, and there is no room to expand them. South Australia is heading for a hung parliament, and has the weakest economy in the country. If the Liberals take power, they won't want the event because it goes against their economic policy. If Labour takes power, the Liberals will block any deal that they think is financially irresponsible. And V8 Supercars has an exclusive agreement with the City of Adelaide.

    Plus, there has been no interest in reclaiming the race.
     
  21. Tired Tyres

    Tired Tyres

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    Infrastructure? Money?
     
  22. Cap'n Jack

    Cap'n Jack Premium

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    Even when we had the option to upgrade the facilities, which included re-designing the Victoria Park section of the track along with a permanent pit facility, we went the cheap route instead by creating new, quicker/easier to build non-permanent pit structure. Not to mention those potential new facilities probably wouldn't have been able to handle F1 anyway. On top of that, a major part of the Adelaide Fringe Festival (the Garden of Unearthly Delights) takes place in the parklands which the longer F1 circuit loops around now, at the very same time of year the Australian GP takes place and I don't see the Australian GP or the Fringe Festival being moved from their current dates.

    Simply put, F1 has outgrown Adelaide and Adelaide has moved on. As much as that pains me to say, being an Adelaide resident.
     
  23. Harley45

    Harley45 Premium

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    Thankfully I had managed to get a copy of the full race without any commentators , it was recorded with just the natural sounds of the cars and also had the radio communications between drivers and pits .

    So i'll stick with my original view and say the cars sound crap , part of the joy of formula 1 for me is the sound of the cars always has been , oh I am old enough to remember the hey days of most engine configurations and the glorious times of V8 , V10 , V12 and even to older V6 Turbo engines .
     
  24. LMSCorvetteGT2

    LMSCorvetteGT2

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    So if they certainly are guilty then why argue? Hardly makes much sense as for the matching up of telemetry it's in the press releases.

    Right there as I explained and for the off-car pull of data

    Which is further backed up by what rules not specified but that can be learned already tell us...

     
  25. prisonermonkeys

    prisonermonkeys Premium

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    So you would just take the wall-to-wall screaming over the new sound, where you can hear the turbocharger, the wheelspin and the brakes locking?

    It might be quieter, but the new sound has a lot more texture.
     
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  26. LMSCorvetteGT2

    LMSCorvetteGT2

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    Some people just like loud cause it makes them think their idols are more manly or whatever, even though they are working harder in these cars than they did in the past versions.
     
  27. MagpieRacer

    MagpieRacer Premium

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  28. jimipitbull

    jimipitbull

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    Which sounds louder at the track - the old sound with earplugs, or the new sound no earplugs?
     
  29. prisonermonkeys

    prisonermonkeys Premium

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    Lead story on Autosport says other teams had issues of their own with the fuel feed sensors, but understood that they had to use them.
     
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  30. Jaywalker

    Jaywalker (Banned)

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    His point, I think, is that the cars sound like lawnmowers...
     
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