Red Bull formally protests Mercedes’ DAS in Austria

Tanya Simon
July 4, 2020

Following the second practice session Red Bull protested the system on the grounds that it breaches Article 3.8 of the technical regulations, which outlaws moveable aerodynamic devices, and Article 10.2.3, which prohibits changes to any suspension system while the vehicle is in motion.

Lewis Hamilton will wear a Black Lives Matter tribute race helmet as he attempts to equal Michael Schumacher's record of seven Formula One world championships this year. No other driver was within half-a-second of the Briton.

Red Bull has lodged an official protest against Mercedes regarding the use of the Dual-Axis Steering system on its W11 at Formula 1's Austrian Grand Prix.

The device, which the sport's all-conquering team first unveiled at testing in February, has already been banned for 2021. They can also push the wheel away before cornering to improve the machine's set-up. Mercedes liaised with the FIA during its development and believe it is legal.

Representatives from Red Bull and Mercedes were both been called to the stewards of the Austrian Grand Prix on Friday evening to make their case.

"All teams are pretty much aware that we are in a sensitive situation with going racing". I think Christian is going to take the right decision.

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They finished with 97 points past year but finished second behind Manchester City who were one point ahead. This is our aim. "My ambition has no limits and I will work to be better in the next years".

Formula One has a long-established process for challenging innovations that exploit loopholes in the rules, with teams making a protest to race stewards and presenting their arguments. It is part of the risk. "We think we are on the right side, and that is the reason we have it on our vehicle".

Red Bull feel they have taken great strides with engine partner Honda during the prolonged break to provide the most exciting talent on the grid with a vehicle capable of ending Hamilton's dominance.

"Obviously we're keen just to get clarity on that system using the mechanisms that are available and getting it addressed quickly early in the weekend", he said.

"I think the fundamental question for us is 'does it comply with the regulations in what is a fundamentally grey area?'" Red Bull team boss Christian Horner told reporters. "They're the questions we'll be asking of the FIA through the necessary channels". "It was great to be back because it has been a long-time coming", he said. The toe angle (the alignment of the front wheels, which DAS alters) is included as part of the suspension settings teams lodge with the FIA before leaving the pits for qualifying, and therefore a change to that could be perceived to be against regulations.

The six-time champion, who has been an outspoken supporter of the campaign for equality and diversity since the death of American George Floyd last month, revealed the statement helmet before climbing into his Mercedes in anger for the first time this year.

Lando Norris, 20, was an encouraging sixth for McLaren.

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