Even two weeks later, Haas continues to voice their dissatisfaction with the race’s outcome in the United States. Why are they doing this? And why are they doing it so late? This protest is raising questions about potential hidden issues within FIA. How likely is it that this protest will be successful?
During the race weekend in Brazil, news spread that Haas is planning to protest the result, two weeks after the United States GP. Someone has submitted a request for a Right of Review. Why is Haas capable of performing this action well after the completion of the race, and what steps are involved in the process? Is there a possibility of it being successful? Let’s delve into this matter further.
What is the reason behind Haas’ decision to protest?
Haas is calling for a review of the United States Grand Prix. The drivers, Nico Hulkenberg and Kevin Magnussen, ended up in 11th and 14th place respectively, narrowly missing out on scoring any points. Throughout the race weekend, the topic of track limits at the Circuit of the Americas stirred significant commotion. As an illustration, Max Verstappen’s pole lap was invalidated, compelling him to commence the race from P6.
The track limits underwent slight adjustments on Saturday following the conclusion of qualifying. In order to provide drivers with a clearer reference point from their cockpit, the lines in certain corners were intentionally rendered thicker. The situation was somewhat improved. On Friday’s qualifying, the deletion of the eight lap times was proceeded by a single violation in the Sprint Shootout on Saturday.
In the midst of the Sprint and main race, the F1 drivers persisted with unwavering enthusiasm, carrying forward the momentum they had established during Friday’s qualifying session. During the Sprint, a total of 17 track limit violations occurred, whereas in the main race, an astonishing 35 violations were recorded. However, Haas believed that there were insufficient resources available.
The lap times that were deleted in Sunday’s race were associated with track limit violations in turns 1, 6, 9, 11, 12, 13, 19, and 20. The FIA did not mention on Sunday which turn corresponded to each violation, unlike on Saturday during the sprint where they did provide that information.
Haas has now made a request for a Right of Review. The protest lacks clarity regarding the specific drivers involved, although it is believed that Perez, Albon, and Stroll are at least part of it.
Specifically, the focus lies on Turn 6. The FIA kept a watchful eye on this corner, yet Albon escaped penalty following a thorough investigation a fortnight ago. The stewards have reached a verdict two weeks ago, stating that although there is a possibility of track limit violations at Turn 6, the evidence at hand is insufficient to definitively and consistently establish these violations.
The verdict was given a fortnight past.
Review Right: As individuals, we have the privilege to exercise our right of review. This means that we have the authority to assess and critique various aspects of our lives, whether it be personal decisions, work performances, or societal norms. The right of review empowers us to reflect upon and evaluate the choices we make, ensuring that they align with our values and goals. It encourages us to question existing systems and challenge the status quo, leading to personal growth and societal progress. By embracing our right of review, we become active participants in shaping our own lives and the world around us.
Haas has therefore submitted a request for a Right of Review. It is still possible to accomplish that task, as long as it is completed within two weeks after the race concludes. Teams are entitled to a Right of Review as the FIA has incorporated it into its International Sporting Code. Put simply, the team is entitled to a review of the situation. Nevertheless, certain conditions come with this, requiring the situation to have evolved from two weeks prior.
In order for Haas to effectively utilize its Right of Review, it must present fresh evidence in accordance with Article 14.1.1 of the International Sporting Code from the worldwide motorsport federation. In the event that an FIA championship uncovers a significant and pertinent new element that was previously unknown to the involved parties during the initial decision-making process, the stewards hold the possibility to review their decision.
According to the motorsports federation document, if that situation arises, the stewards are required to convene (either in person or online) at a mutually agreed upon date. They must then call upon the involved party or parties to attend and provide an explanation. Ultimately, a decision must be rendered after considering the newly presented evidence.
The question at hand is whether Haas has the ability to present fresh and, more importantly, substantial evidence that has not been seen before. The stewards stated in their initial decision that they had reviewed all accessible footage except for the CCTV recordings. It could be that Haas is persisting in their efforts to persuade the stewards using the CCTV footage.
However, just because the stewards might not have seen a new camera angle, it doesn’t automatically make it significant evidence. The stewards have the authority to determine the relevance of the evidence during the application process, and their decision is final and cannot be contested.
The likelihood of success is minimal.
Recently, there has been a surge in requests for the Right of Reviews from various teams. One notable incident took place in 2019 when Ferrari demanded a review after Sebastian Vettel received a penalty for veering off the track in Canada during his intense battle with Lewis Hamilton. The stewards deemed Vettel’s return to the track as hazardous, leading to the controversial appeal. Due to a five-second penalty, he was deprived of the victory.
Red Bull made a request for a Right of Review following the collision between Hamilton and Max Verstappen at Copse during the Great Britain GP in 2021. Despite receiving a 10-second penalty, the Briton emerged victorious in the race, with Red Bull advocating for a more severe penalty. In the guise of fresh evidence, they went as far as having Alex Albon imitate Verstappen’s racing trajectory at Silverstone during a designated day for filming, all in an effort to exhibit the alternative choices Hamilton could have made.
The other way around, Mercedes repeated the same action later that year. In Brazil, there was an intense battle between Verstappen and Hamilton, where the Dutchman pushed the boundaries with his on-track maneuvers. Despite not receiving a penalty during the race, there was a glimmer of hope for Silver Arrows Team Principal Toto Wolff and his team to initiate a change after the race.
In the previous year, Haas, situated in the United States, lodged a request for a Right of Review. This was in response to Alonso’s purported use of an unsafe Alpine car following a specific collision with Lance Stroll. At the beginning of the year, Ferrari expressed a desire to alter the outcome of the Australian Grand Prix due to an unfortunate incident. A subsequent Safety Car intervention, occurring after a red flag restart, resulted in a detrimental five-second penalty for Sainz.
All of the above share a common trait – they were all dismissed. In certain instances, the verdict decided that fresh evidence had indeed emerged. However, notably, the evidence was not discovered. It appears highly unlikely that such an event will occur again this time.
address: the lack of transparency in the decision-making process. The demonstrations highlight a critical issue that demands immediate attention from the FIA: the opaque nature of their decision-making procedures.