New FIA technical directive explained as Guenther Steiner legal action laughed off – F1 news round-up

Thomas Maher
McLaren's Lando Norris and Haas' Guenther Steiner.

McLaren's Lando Norris and Haas' Guenther Steiner.

With the Singapore Grand Prix weekend just around the corner, get the full lowdown on the new FIA Technical directive and all of Tuesday’s news!

It’s the ‘eager anticipation’ part of race week and we’re beginning our build-up to the race at Marina Bay, with plenty more to come throughout the week before the action gets going.

Let’s dive into the best of the F1 news from Tuesday.

New technical directive introduced by the FIA

From this weekend, a new technical directive will be introduced and enforced by the FIA, taking aim at mechanisms that may be concealed under rubber covers.

Speaking with, the FIA’s Nikolas Tombazis has explained the area of focus of TD018.

“If under a carbon surface, we have levers that allow a deflection in one direction and not in another, we can consider this a mechanism,” he said.

“Another thing we have said in the past is that it’s not acceptable when a component has relative motion against an adjacent element, sliding in a different direction [from it].

“What happened recently? Some teams have components adjacent to each other that have a fairly high movement but do not slide [in tandem] because these areas are covered with rubber material.

“We do not consider this acceptable and, for this reason, we have made a clarification.”

Read more: TD018 explained as FIA clamp down on tricks hidden under rubber coverings

Guenther Steiner laughs off rumours of $900 million rift with Gene Haas

A recent report in an F1 magazine had suggested that Haas team boss Guenther Steiner was set to sue Gene Haas over a disputed ownership stake in the team – a report that Steiner has cut down with vigour.

“I told Gene that I was supposed to be suing him for $900 million,” he told F1 journalist Joe Saward.

“And he said: ‘Good luck with that!’.

“Where do these stories come from? Who makes them up?”

Read more:  Guenther Steiner addresses rumours of $900m legal action against Gene Haas

Charles Leclerc’s errors explained by Peter Windsor

With the Monegasque sealing his reputation as a fast but flawed driver this season, veteran F1 journalist and pundit Peter Windsor reckons there’s a straightforward reason for the myriad mistakes the Ferrari driver makes.

“Leclerc’s yardstick is racing with Max [Verstappen] and to some extent, you know, Lewis at the front of a Grand Prix, when he’s not in that situation, he doesn’t really care that much about anything other than just trying to get back into the situation.

“That’s possibly why we see him making more mistakes and doing funny things, because he’s just desperate to get to where he wants to be.”

Read more: Pundit’s Charles Leclerc mistake theory: ‘Doesn’t care much’ beyond ambitious ‘yardstick’

Gerhard Berger: Mercedes’ ‘Wikipedia’ jibes ‘unnecessary’

With Toto Wolff picking up some flak for his ‘Wikipedia’ comments about Max Verstappen’s 10-race winning streak, former F1 race winner Gerhard Berger says he’s enjoying the drama but that the comments weren’t necessary in the first place.

“Thank God we have all these kinds of discussions, what should we talk [about] now if they all would just be very streamlined and never [made] any critical comments?” he said.

“In some ways, they’re a bit frustrated, too, because the seasons are not running as they would like to run.

“And then in the right moment, the wrong question gives some statements like this, but at the end of the day, they’ve been highly competitive over so many years. And at this time, others maybe made some comments like this, and now they are in a different situation and they have to swallow it.”

Read more: Mercedes told to ‘swallow’ Red Bull success after recent ‘Wikipedia’ jibes

Nico Rosberg: Lewis Hamilton re-signing brings stability to Mercedes

With Mercedes recently confirming both Lewis Hamilton and George Russell for 2024, 2016 F1 World Champion and former Mercedes driver Nico Rosberg says the drawn-out negotiations would have stressed out Toto Wolff – even if the Austrian would never have shown it publicly.

“I think just stability, calmness because it always leads to uncertainty even in the leadership, ‘Ah Lewis has not signed yet’,” he told Sky Sports.

“It puts stress, stress because what if Lewis suddenly decides, ‘I actually prefer to go surfing at the beach’?

“That would be a big problem then.

“So it does put stress, especially probably on someone like Toto, even though he wouldn’t show it because he’s an incredible, incredibly good negotiator, and pretty cold, but inside it certainly put stress.”

Read more: ‘Pretty cold’ Toto Wolff avoided a ‘big problem’ with Lewis Hamilton’s extension