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FIA to amend 2021 regulations to prevent copying, Racing Point deducted championship points

  • Published on 07 Aug 2020 15:10
  • comments 12
  • By: Coilin Higgins

It has been revealed Renault's protest Racing Point's RP20 has been upheld, with the team being deducted 15 championship points and given a €400,000 fine as a result.

In the opening three rounds, Renault protested against Racing Point and it's 2020 car, the RP20, due to the striking resemblance to Mercedes' 2019 title winner, the W10.

Despite admitting basing its design on the W10 but insisting it stayed within the bounds of the regulations, The FIA found the brake ducts on the RP20 to have been mirrored with those of the W10 and have upheld the protest in favour of Renault.

It is understood that The FIA will now take action to amend the regulations in 2021 in order to prevent further direct copying from teams.

FIA head of single-seaters Niklas Tombazis spoke to Formula1.com on the matter, saying that while copying has always been evident in F1, Racing Point went beyond what was the normality and that the matter is something the FIA does not want to see F1 become.

“First of all copying has been taking place in Formula 1 for a long time, taking photos, and sometimes reverse-engineering them and make similar concepts or in some areas even identical concepts or close to identical as other teams,” Tombazis said.

“We do not think this can stop in the future completely. But what we do think is Racing Point took this to another level. They clearly decided to adopt this philosophy for the whole car for what I would call a paradigm shift.

“They actually used a disruption in the process that has been the norm in designing a Formula 1 car for the last 40 years. One should not penalise that as they have been original in deciding to follow this approach.

“However we do not think this is what F1 should become. We don’t want next year to have 8 or 10 Mercedes, or copies of Mercedes, on the grid, where the main skill becomes how you do this process. We don’t want this to become the norm of Formula 1.

“We do plan, in the very short notice, to introduce some amendment to the 2021 sporting regulations that will prevent this becoming the norm. It will prevent from using extensive parts of photos to copy whole portions of other cars in the way racing point has done."

Replies (12)

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  • jj284b

    Posts: 22

    sorry, but if only punishment is some fine, and points lost in the first race, then why not just copy the Mercedes car completely, take the fine and then come second in championship??? If you end up third, you easily pay the fine from earnings over the season....

    and if copycat cars will be illegal, what about current Racing Point car? Are they supposed to design a new one? or will they be allowed to use such car next year???

    • + 2
    • Aug 7 2020 - 16:38
    • Snooky

      Posts: 120

      They couldn’t punish them for the following races as they have only just reached a decision following the first protest so RP didn’t need to change their car in the races in between as there was nothing to say it wasn’t within the regs at that stage. If they’d reached the decision straight after and continued using it then we’d see something different. Can’t blame RP for the Stewards and FIA pudding about taking their time. I understand they have been given time to change these parts as they can’t redevelop and make over night but I can’t imagine that’ll last forever

      • + 0
      • Aug 7 2020 - 21:05
    • jj284b

      Posts: 22

      Snooky: yet last time they took all points from Renault for similar violation in sports regulation...

      • + 0
      • Aug 7 2020 - 22:41
    • Snooky

      Posts: 120

      Currently it’s breached sporting regs not technical regs hence the different punishments

      • + 0
      • Aug 8 2020 - 04:28
    • jj284b

      Posts: 22

      Snooky: but Renault did also only broke sporting regulations, appendix 22, about driver assists...

      • + 0
      • Aug 8 2020 - 05:32
  • Manto02

    Posts: 92

    Ridiculous

    • + 1
    • Aug 7 2020 - 17:44
  • siggy74

    Posts: 194

    If the rules do not outlaw copying.... Then they have not broken the rules ;p and wait for the protest to come.......

    If racing point created all their own data.... and such in the manufacture and design stage.... then one has to wonder why F1 rules dictate that ares are design with in limits....


    Limits in design = Production of a very tight group of products... mmm

    This is Horse..... it.... If Renault can only win by getting a competitor disqualified, not much hope for em designing a decent car...

    • + 1
    • Aug 7 2020 - 18:35
    • f1ski

      Posts: 726

      It is horse apples. Look at Renaults technical staff. From FIA officials to others engineers. Copying at its ultimate.

      • + 0
      • Aug 7 2020 - 23:24
  • Bilstar

    Posts: 54

    I've been told for the last 20 years that this was a rule anyway. What else is new? Can we secretly have fan cars back now? Might as well give it a go judging by this.

    • + 0
    • Aug 7 2020 - 18:49
    • Plagiarism is illegal, copying isn't, and the difference is vast between those terms in F1. The car as a whole meet the conditions of being a copy, but the brake ducts were too close and, while clearly not being deemed plagiarism (that'd be a season ban) they decided to penalize just in case.

      • + 0
      • Aug 8 2020 - 11:15
  • Idk, give me 8-10 mercedes copycat cars all racing over 0.5s in quali and within half a lap in the race and I'll take it.

    This seems like bs to me.

    • + 0
    • Aug 7 2020 - 20:34
    • Snooky

      Posts: 120

      Think Mercedes would end up having something to say about that... why should they spend all the money developing their cars for others to save money by copying it... also this would be terrible in that all the cars would be a year old except merc so they’d be far out in front every year as they pushed. Would be exciting behind them but not at the front

      • + 0
      • Aug 9 2020 - 10:31

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