Skip to content

Updates from the FIA International Tribunal on Mercedes’ test

Jun 20, 2013, 9:30 AM EDT

France Tire Test Hearing AP

We’ll provide updates from the FIA International Tribunal hearing regarding the legality of Mercedes’ tire test with 2013-spec Pirelli rubber and its 2013 chassis, the W04, after the Spanish Grand Prix in Barcelona.

UPDATE, 9:30 a.m. ET: Pirelli has had its turn in front of the FIA Tribunal and its lawyer said the FIA has no jurisdiction to sanction it.

“Pirelli cannot understand the disciplinary action,” said Pirelli’s lawyer Dominique Dumas. “Pirelli is only acting with the rights it was given by the FIA. The claims are unfounded because it has been recognized that Pirelli has not violated the code.”

It appears the FIA will not issue a verdict on the hearing today, per a tweet from BBC reporter Jennie Gow:

UPDATE, 8:45 a.m. ET: Mercedes team principal Ross Brawn has weighed in on the matter, and said there was no way his outfit could have benefited from the test.

“I don’t see how,” he said, reported by Autosport. “We didn’t know what the tires were; we didn’t know what the detail objectives were of what Pirelli were doing. We always work on the principle that no information is better than bad information. I don’t see how we could have used any data from that test.”

Brawn added that Charlie Whiting’s decisions, whatever they are, are final when it comes to sporting decisions.

The way things are looking thus far, it appears either of these two could be one to fall on the sword. Of course, Pirelli is up next, and that could have a lot of impact.

8 a.m. ET: As of 8 a.m. ET, the FIA and Mercedes have presented their cases in the FIA Tribunal to determine the legality, and/or fallout, of Mercedes’ tire test after the Spanish Grand Prix.

The FIA was first up, per the BBC, and says it never gave Mercedes and Pirelli official permission to run its 2013-spec W04 chassis at the Barcelona test.

If Formula One race director Charlie Whiting had given the OK, the FIA claimed such a ruling was “irrelevant” and would not supersede its own ruling.

“Whether or not Whiting consented, it is irrelevant, because testing in relation to Article 22 is a breach, unless it [a rule change] is granted by the World Motor Sport Council,” said Mark Howard QC, the FIA’s legal representative.

Mercedes was next up (via Autosport), and true to form throughout this process said it was not in violation of Article 22 as it viewed the test as a Pirelli test. Its lawyer, Paul Harris QC, said Pirelli’s full organization and payment of the test should take Mercedes out of blame.

“This was not a test undertaken by Mercedes. They are critical words in text of Article 22 – ‘undertaken by’,” he said.”The Pirelli test was not a test undertaken by Mercedes, it is irrefutable it is a test undertaken by Pirelli.”

And while Ferrari had already been cleared of any wrongdoing by the FIA for its own test of 2013 Pirelli rubber, the key difference being it was with its 2011 car, Mercedes has now challenged that test too.

“Our position is if we are wrong on interpretation of what [article] 22 means and there was track running by us, such as we are in breach, it follows that Ferrari were also in breach,” said Harris. “They ran their car on track and we argue their car followed substantially with the regulations… I put the marker down.”

An interested spectator in the crowd? That would be Red Bull team principal Christian Horner, who has attended the proceedings.

Latest Posts
  1. True Americana with a racing twist: Martinsville Speedway once again hosts high school prom after-party

    Apr 16, 2014, 8:40 PM EDT

    Two weeks after NASCAR made its most recent visit there, Martinsville Speedway's infield was transformed from a racing venue to a prom after party for students of Martinsville High School. (Photo courtesy Martinsville Speedway) Two weeks after NASCAR made its most recent visit there, Martinsville Speedway's infield was transformed from a racing venue to a prom after party for students of Martinsville High School. (Photo courtesy Martinsville Speedway)

    What do Martinsville Speedway, New York’s Central Park and a prom after-party have in common? They’re all one-in-the-same – kind of. For over a decade every April, NASCAR’s oldest racetrack has played host to Martinsville (Va.) High School’s prom after-party.

  2. Cooler heads prevail as IndyCar drivers test at Texas (VIDEO)

    Apr 16, 2014, 8:30 PM EDT

    Credit: Texas Motor Speedway Credit: Texas Motor Speedway

    A few days after a wild Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach, 18 car/driver combinations turned laps at Texas Motor Speedway this afternoon.

  3. Four-Wide win ties Pro Stock Motorcycle rider Andrew Hines with late NHRA legend, friend John Myers

    Apr 16, 2014, 8:09 PM EDT

    Andrew Hines (photo courtesy NHRA) Andrew Hines (photo courtesy NHRA)

    Sunday’s win in the Four-Wide Nationals at zMAX Dragway held special significance for NHRA Pro Stock Motorcycle rider Andrew Hines. The three-time NHRA PSM champion earned his 33rd national event win, tying him for third in Pro Stock Motorcycle’s wins list with the late John Myers.

  4. Motivation for Luiz Razia? The Long Beach podium staring him in the face

    Apr 16, 2014, 8:00 PM EDT

    F1 Testing in Jerez - Day Four Getty Images

    Schmidt Peterson driver Luiz Razia posts photo of the Long Beach podium to inspire him to get better.

  5. Marcus Jadotte, led NASCAR’s diversity initiative, leaving sanctioning body

    Apr 16, 2014, 7:29 PM EDT

    Marcus Jadotte

    Marcus Jadotte, one of the leading forces behind NASCAR’s Drive for Diversity program over nearly the last decade, announced Wednesday that he’s leaving as the organization’s vice president of public affairs and multicultural development.

  6. NASCAR AMERICA: Wednesday round-up (VIDEO)

    Apr 16, 2014, 6:38 PM EDT

    nascar america

    Steve Letarte, Ricky Rudd offer insights on Wednesday’s NASCAR AMERICA.

  7. Saavedra docked $10,000, placed on probation post-Long Beach

    Apr 16, 2014, 5:00 PM EDT

    Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach Getty Images

    Sebastian Saavedra fined $10,000 for yellow-flag infraction in Long Beach.

  8. Pirelli World Challenge: Bentleys confirmed for Dyson Racing

    Apr 16, 2014, 4:40 PM EDT

    Photo: Bentley Photo: Bentley

    Bentley confirms Pirelli World Challenge GT program with Dyson Racing, to premiere later in the year.

  9. Jeff Gordon has bad news for his rivals: He’s thinking of racing for 10 more years

    Apr 16, 2014, 4:09 PM EDT

    Is Jeff Gordon serious that he may continue racing in NASCAR for another 10 more years? Getty Images

    Jeff Gordon has said several times that if he were to win a fifth Sprint Cup crown, that he likely would retire after that championship season and go out on top. Some of his competitors may be looking forward to that day coming – and some hope it comes as soon as after this season so Gordon won’t continue to confound them in coming seasons as he has for the last 21 seasons. But ever the kind of guy who plays his cards close to the vest, Gordon may be getting ready to throw his fellow drivers and NASCAR fans a curve ball.

  10. NASCAR’s birthplace, the Streamline Hotel in Daytona Beach, to get significant makeover

    Apr 16, 2014, 3:41 PM EDT

    Daytona Beach's Streamline Hotel, where the foundation of NASCAR was formed in 1947. Daytona Beach's Streamline Hotel, where the foundation of NASCAR was formed in 1947.

    NASCAR’s birthplace, the Streamline Hotel in Daytona Beach, Fla., is going to be – well, streamlined. According to Wednesday’s Daytona Beach News-Journal, the hotel where NASCAR was formed back in 1947, will soon undergo extensive renovations to bring back some of the hotel’s luster of days gone by.

  11. IndyCar remix: Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach (VIDEO)

    Apr 16, 2014, 3:35 PM EDT

    Pagenaud Getty Images

    Relive the drama from Sunday’s Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach.

  12. Scott Bloomquist heads to Mississippi on heels of win and runner-up finishes

    Apr 16, 2014, 3:17 PM EDT

    Bloomquist 4-16-2014

    Scott Bloomquist just keeps motoring along in the National Dirt Racing League. Bloomquist is coming off a strong weekend performance where he was runnerup Saturday at Virginia Motor Speedway, and then for an encore won Sunday’s main event at Winchester (Tenn.) Speedway.

  13. Kentucky Speedway June Nationwide Series race to promote program encouraging use of designated drivers

    Apr 16, 2014, 2:42 PM EDT

    Bill and Muriel Elliott continue the memory of their son, Ensign John Elliott, who was killed by a drunk driver in 2000. Bill and Muriel Elliott continue the memory of their son, Ensign John Elliott, who was killed by a drunk driver in 2000.

    It’s rare that someone is happy to get or pay a traffic ticket from a state trooper. But thousands of NASCAR fans will gladly fork out their hard-earned money for a different kind of ticket, and one that carries the same kind of meaning as many of the tickets that police across the U.S. issue countless times each day.

  14. WATCH LIVE: NASCAR AMERICA at 5 p.m. ET — Rudd, Letarte, Hollywood Armstrong and why good restarts are key

    Apr 16, 2014, 2:08 PM EDT

    140416-NASCAR-AMERICA

    While much of NASCAR may be on its version of spring break, the NASCAR AMERICA team is hard at work to bring you some intriguing content. Rick Allen and Kyle Petty hold down the fort at the anchor desk on Wednesday’s show at 5 p.m. ET on NBCSN and NBC Sports Live Extra for your online or mobile device.

  15. Going through NASCAR withdrawal already? Here’s some intriguing numbers to devour

    Apr 16, 2014, 1:46 PM EDT

    Kyle Busch is closing in on a significant milestone: he needs to lead just 30 laps at Richmond on April 26 to reach 10,000 laps led in his Sprint Cup career. Given that he doesn't turn 29 until early May, Busch conceivably could hit 25,000 or maybe even 30,000 laps led in his career if he continues at his current pace. Getty Images

    NASCAR may have the upcoming weekend off for the Easter holiday, but that doesn’t mean its crack team of statisticians is on vacation like most of the drivers and teams. Even without a race, they’re still pumping out numbers that fans love to devour. So for an appetizer prior to next week’s countdown to the April 26 race at Richmond International Raceway, here’s some food for thought and to munch on

  16. McLaren looks for recovery after double DNF in Bahrain

    Apr 16, 2014, 1:00 PM EDT

    Jenson Button AP

    After Bahrain frustration, McLaren looks for big points in China.

  17. Could F1 have its sixth different winner in China in last six years?

    Apr 16, 2014, 12:03 PM EDT

    Force India Getty Images

    After five winners in last five Chinese Grands Prix, is a sixth possible?

  18. Le Mans: Satoshi Motoyama completes Nissan ZEOD RC lineup (VIDEO)

    Apr 16, 2014, 8:48 AM EDT

    Photo: Nissan NISMO Photo: Nissan NISMO

    All-electric Garage 56 prototype features another familiar Nissan name in his Le Mans return.

  19. Cup drivers expecting speeds to go up at Kansas

    Apr 15, 2014, 8:33 PM EDT

    Hollywood Casino 400 Getty Images

    If Sprint Cup drivers’ comments during today’s Goodyear tire test at Kansas Speedway are an indication, we can expect to see track records fall next month on the 1.5-mile oval.

  20. NASCAR AMERICA: Tuesday Round-Up (VIDEO)

    Apr 15, 2014, 7:30 PM EDT

    nascar america

    Kyle Petty breaks down critical pit strategies in recent races, and Nate Ryan reports on today’s Goodyear tire test at Kansas.

Today on NASCAR AMERICA

More from NASCAR America

Inside the Goodyear tire test at Kansas

Featured video

Recapping a race under Baharain lights
Top 10 NASCAR Driver Searches
  1. J. McMurray (24110)
  2. K. Harvick (6926)
  3. M. McDowell (3405)
  4. C. Edwards (1693)
  5. T. Bayne (1359)
  1. K. Busch (1193)
  2. J. Logano (1180)
  3. T. Stewart (1067)
  4. A. Seuss (1055)
  5. J. Bertuccio (978)