x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 21 July 2017

Formula One: FIA hands out a reprimand to Mercedes over in-season Pirelli tyre test

The German team avoid heavy sanctions over the in-season Pirelli tyre test they performed with their current car.

Nico Rosberg (bottom)and Lewis Hamilton (up) will not lose any championship points for the illegal in-season tyre test they took part in with Pirelli.
Nico Rosberg (bottom)and Lewis Hamilton (up) will not lose any championship points for the illegal in-season tyre test they took part in with Pirelli.

Mercedes GP and Pirelli have avoided stern sanctions for their involvement in last month's controversial tyre test at Barcelona after the FIA announced on Friday each has been let off with a reprimand.

Mercedes also have been banned from competing in the Young Driver Test to be held at Silverstone on July 17-19.

The decisions came the day after a specially convened International Tribunal sat in session for over six hours on Thursday to determine whether Mercedes and Pirelli violated F1's sporting regulations during the test held between May 15-17.

The right of appeal is open to both, but it seems highly unlikely that either will elect to go down the route, particularly Mercedes, who faced sanctions ranging from a fine through to a points deduction, race bans or even exclusion from the world championship.

It has been reported that Mercedes's largest group of shareholders would have sought to urge the company to quit F1 in the event of a severe punishment, while Pirelli was facing an uncertain future with its deal to continue to supply tyres to the series in 2014 and beyond still to be finalised.

The FIA was pushing to sanction Mercedes under the provisions of its sporting regulations, which outline the ban on in-season testing. Pirelli was summoned on the grounds that it had failed to offer the opportunity to test to other teams.

A statement on behalf of the tribunal read: "The Tribunal, after having heard the parties and examined their submissions, decided that: Mercedes be reprimanded; Mercedes be suspended from participating in the forthcoming three-day young driver training test; Pirelli be reprimanded … and rejected all other and further conclusions."

The FIA, which called for the tribunal to rule on the matter following a protest from Red Bull and Ferrari ahead of the Monaco Grand Prix, responded to the verdict in a separate statement in which the body expressed hope that the rules have been clarified.

"The FIA wishes that lessons are learnt from this case and from the decision handed down. "To this end, the FIA will make sure, in association with all F1 teams, that its control of the testings is strengthened.

 

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