FIA responds to F1 teams’ statement on settlement with Ferrari

© Steve Etherington for Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix Ltd.

The FIA responded to the statement released by seven Formula 1 teams who voiced their displeasure with the “confidential” nature of the engine dispute settlement with Ferrari.

Mercedes, Red Bull, McLaren, Renault, AlphaTauri, Racing Point and Williams released a joint statement yesterday voicing their “displeasure” with the FIA’s “confidential settlement” with Ferrari over the investigation into the Italian team’s 2019 power unit.

The teams went as far as threatening legal action against the FIA if the results of the investigation and the nature of the settlement are not revealed to them. Today the FIA responded, basically saying that they were not “fully satisfied” with Ferrari’s explanation, but weren’t confident that they could prove Ferrari’s engine broke the rules.

“The extensive and thorough investigations undertaken during the 2019 season raised suspicions that the Scuderia Ferrari PU could be considered as not operating within the limits of the FIA regulations at all times,” the FIA statement read.

“The Scuderia Ferrari firmly opposed the suspicions and reiterated that its PU always operated in compliance with the regulations.

“The FIA was not fully satisfied but decided that further action would not necessarily result in a conclusive case due to the complexity of the matter and the material impossibility to provide the unequivocal evidence of a breach.

“To avoid the negative consequences that a long litigation would entail especially in light of the uncertainty of the outcome of such litigations and in the best interest of the Championship and of its stakeholders, the FIA, in compliance with Article 4 (ii) of its Judicial and Disciplinary Rules (JDR), decided to enter into an effective and dissuasive settlement agreement with Ferrari to terminate the proceedings.

“This type of agreement is a legal tool recognised as an essential component of any disciplinary system and is used by many public authorities and other sport federations in the handling of disputes.

“The confidentiality of the terms of the settlement agreement is provided for by Article 4 (vi) of the JDR.

“The FIA will take all necessary action to protect the sport and its role and reputation as regulator of the FIA Formula One World Championship.”

It remains to be seen if the teams will be satisfied with this explanation.

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