Mercedes to face FIA tribunal; Ferrari acquitted
The team undertook around 1000km of testing using their 2013 car, which is forbidden under the FIA regulations that clearly state in-season testing is banned. Both Mercedes and Pirelli protest their innocence, claiming that the tyre manufacturers contract with the sport permits such a test, but the FIA has opted to look into the matter further.
In a statement, the FIA said: “In the light of all the replies received and in view of the information gathered during this inquiry, the President of the FIA, acting as the FIA prosecuting body, has decided to bring the case concerning the tyre testing session carried out by Pirelli and Team Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 in Barcelona on 15-17 May 2013 before the FIA International Tribunal because it results from the inquiry that the conditions of this testing may constitute a breach of the applicable FIA rules.”
This follows the protest lodged by Red Bull Racing and Scuderia Ferrari at the Monaco Grand Prix.
Furthermore, Ferrari, who had also been asked to explain their own tyre test to the FIA, have been acquitted as they used a car which is more than two years old: the 2011 F150 Italia.
The FIA has opted “to close the case as regard to Scuderia Ferrari Team considering that its participation in a tyre testing organized by Pirelli in Barcelona on 23-24 April 2013 using for this purpose a 2011 car is not deemed to contravene the applicable FIA rules.”
Luke Smith is the Editor-in-Chief and Founder of Richland F1. Having started the website in March 2012, he has gone on to become one of the youngest members of the Formula 1 paddock after joining American broadcaster NBC Sports at the beginning of the 2013 season. Luke now works as the network's lead F1 writer, supporting the TV coverage on nbcsports.com. Luke's work has also been featured on NBC News, Yahoo! Sports, Driven Magazine and the Bahrain Mirror, and he has also appeared on CNBC's TV series "One Second in F1 Racing".