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."
Bahrain International Circuit - Winter testing