Binotto questions Mercedes and porpoising technical directive

The FIA's recent technical directive aimed at tackling the porpoising issue hasn't been well received by Ferrari


Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto doesn’t believe the FIA’s recent technical directive aimed at limiting the porpoising and bouncing of the 2022 F1 cars is applicable.

The directive was announced on the eve of the 2022 Canadian Grand Prix weekend after several drivers voiced their complaints following neck and back issues in Baku.

The FIA stated that the aim is to find an “acceptable level of vertical oscillations” and force teams to change their setups if they are found to be breaching that limit, though they aren’t sure how to calculate that mathematically just yet.

Although Binotto believes the proposing issue should be looked into, he isn’t happy with how the FIA has gone about in doing so.

“In terms of porpoising, it’s something that we need to tackle for the future, and try to reduce it through technical changes,” said Binotto.

“It’s a technical issue that needs to be discussed. How we do that, it’s an open question. For us, the TD is not applicable.

“It’s something we mentioned to the FIA. A TD is there to clarify regulations, or to address policing. It is not there to change the regulations. That’s [a matter of] governance.

Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc at the 2022 Canadian Grand Prix: David Kirouac-USA TODAY Sports

“Even on the grounds of safety, what can be done is first a consultation with the TAC (Technical Advisory Committee), change the regulations and then go straight to the [FIA] World Council for a formal approval of the change of the regulations without having the approval of the teams.

“But you do not change regulations with a TD. So we sent that to the FIA.

“As a matter of fact, I think [the instructions in the directive] were issued by mistake. I think that part of the metric has not been applied, and the extra brackets have not been fitted on any car for the weekend. So a big noise for nothing.”

Binotto questions Mercedes claim

Binotto was referring to another part of the FIA’s technical directive in which teams are allowed to add a second floor stay if they are struggling with proposing.

Mercedes were the only team to do so in Canada, with several rivals, including Ferrari, left questioning how they could have parts available on such short notice given the directive was only made public on Thursday.

Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton in action during the Canadian Grand Prix REUTERS/Chris Helgren

Although Mercedes said the move was an on-site response, Binotto wasn’t convinced by the claim.

“Toto [Wolff] said they did it overnight,” Binotto stated. “What I can say is that Ferrari would not be capable of doing it.

“No doubt I’m surprised that a team is so strong in doing that overnight. I can maybe only trust what he’s saying.”

Adriano Boin
Adriano Boin
Motorsport journalist specialising in Formula 1 and Ferrari.
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