Renault may appeal Racing Point verdict

Date published: August 7 2020

Renault Racing Point

Red Bull’s Christian Horner has heard on the grapevine that Renault may appeal the verdict given by the FIA on the Racing Point’s RP20.

Even though Renault’s protest against the legality of the RP20 was successful after Racing Point were deducted 15 points and fined 400,000 Euros, they can continue to use the Mercedes-inspired brake ducts as they are not illegal from a technical perspective, only a sporting one.

Whilst all eyes are looking at Racing Point as to whether they will appeal the decision, Horner thinks that it may actually be Renault who are the ones to question the decision from the FIA.

“There’s a big old dossier that came with it,” Horner told Sky Sports F1 following the FIA’s ruling on the RP20.

“So we need to analyse the implications because this is a much bigger picture than just a brake duct. It’s about can you copy and recreate a car?

“If you can then that opens up the path of why wouldn’t we do the same with AlphaTauri going into next year. So it’s a much bigger question and we need to understand very clearly whether it’s allowed or not allowed.

“For me, if we are to have customer cars then just do it above the table and sell them the car, but then they are not a constructor and then shouldn’t have time in the wind tunnel and they also shouldn’t have the financial benefits of being a constructor.

“We have got the ruling now and it needs several lawyers to understand it. We heard that Renault may potentially appeal as they don’t feel the punishment is draconian enough – so we’re obviously following it with a lot of interest.”

Horner continued: “I’ve always said that I’ve got no issue with a customer car. For a small team it is their quickest route to competitiveness.

“I think where we should be at is that it is either allowed and it’s above the table. As I say, if you are not a constructor then you don’t have the overheads of design or research or development, so therefore you are a customer and that is a Concorde Agreement issue where a constructor is entitled to the revenues.

“If you allowed customer teams then that would have to be revisited. It is a fundamental question for Formula 1 and which way we want to go.”

And Renault boss Cyril Abiteboul has now confirmed that Renault will evaluate whether or not it is in their or the sport’s best interests to appeal for a harsher sanction to be handed to Racing Point.

“I can confirm that we are considering whether or not to appeal,” said Abiteboul during a press conference at Silverstone ahead of the 70th Anniversary Grand Prix.

“It happens that usually we have one hour to do that but in this particular case, given the complexity, we have 24 hours to do that and then 96 hours to confirm or not appeal.

“So again, because it’s complex and we need to balance carefully the interests of the sports also and the consistency of the sanction we are looking whether or not we will appeal the sanction, not obviously on the decision.”

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