Red Bull fail in appeal against Daniel Ricciardo disqualification
‘We always believed we adhered to the technical regulations’
Red Bull’s appeal against Daniel Ricciardo’s disqualification in the Australian Grand Prix has been rejected, the FIA has confirmed. Photograph: Jon Buckle/PA Wire
Red Bull will move forward following their failed appeal against Daniel Ricciardo’s disqualification from last month’s season-opening Australian Grand Prix in order to focus on this weekend’s race in China.
The Milton Keynes-based marque appealed the decision of race stewards, who denied Ricciardo the runner-up spot he achieved in front of his home fans in Melbourne due to a fuel irregularity.
After the FIA’s International Court of Appeal in Paris upheld the decision, Red Bull expressed their disappointment but vowed to move on.
“Infiniti Red Bull Racing accepts the ruling of the International Court of Appeal today,” the team said in a statement. “We are of course disappointed by the outcome and would not have appealed if we didn’t think we had a very strong case. We always believed we adhered to the technical regulations throughout the 2014 Australian Grand Prix.
“We are sorry for Daniel (Ricciardo) that he will not be awarded the 18 points from the event, which we think he deserved. We will continue to work very hard to amass as many points as possible for the team, Daniel and Sebastian (Vettel) throughout the season.
“We will now move on from this and concentrate on this weekend’s Chinese Grand Prix.”
The decision means Ricciardo will remain not recover the 18 points he lost in Melbourne, leaving the driver in 10th place in the overall standings.
Red Bull team principal Christian Horner had been confident of over-turning the decision, declaring beforehand that his team had “a very strong case”.
Ricciardo’s car had been found to have consistently exceeded the maximum allowed fuel flow rate of 100 kilograms per hour, but Red Bull cited persistent issues with the sensors over the course of the weekend that forced them to take their own readings.
The FIA claimed that no other instrument, other than the permitted sensor, was allowed to measure the fuel flow, with Red Bull warned both after qualifying and five laps into the race with regard to the matter.
Red Bull also argued that the technical directive issued over the course of the weekend with regard to the fuel flow was not regulatory and therefore they should not be punished for disregarding it.
The team’s chief technical officer Adrian Newey and chief engineer of car engineering Paul Monaghan were questioned at the hearing while Mercedes, McLaren, Lotus, Williams and Force India all had representatives present.
Mercedes, who have won all three races so far, have called for a further sanction, to be suspended until the end of the season, to dissuade Red Bull from doing the same thing again.
The FIA has said a full explanation of the decision would be made available on its website by the end of the week.
“The Court, after having heard the parties and examined their submissions, decided to uphold the decision number 56 of the stewards by which they decided to exclude Infiniti Red Bull Racing’s car number three from the results of the 2014 Australian Grand Prix,” a statement on the FIA’s website read.