The French Grand Prix is almost upon us as all teams ready themselves for the first two Free Practices on Friday, less than 24 hours away. But Ferrari continue the fight over the 5 second Penalty Sebastian Vettel received at the Canadian Grand Prix, which cost him a win and gave title rival Lewis Hamilton another victory, extending his lead at the top to 29 points over 2nd placed Bottas and 62 points over Sebastian Vettel.
Sebastian Vettel Canadian GP Penalty :
While Ferrari did not opt to appeal the penalty during the race, they did in the following days file an official request for review of the incident that it has a right to do under Article 14 of the International Sporting Code. The Article 14 pertains to finding of new significant and relevant evidence that might have not been available while the penalty was originally handed out.
As per MotorSport: New evidence it (Ferrari) will present includes GPS data, extra telemetry and the witness testimony of Vettel himself – who was not asked for his opinion about the incident before the stewards punished him. Should the new elements be accepted by the stewards as enough to justify re-examining the case, then matters could get interesting because central to Ferrari’s argument will likely be the use of the FIA’s own rule book to show that Vettel did no wrong.
The FIA will hear the review case from Ferrari at 14:15 BST later today and if it feels the evidence is enough to re-examine the penalty, Mercedes might call foul as they could’ve tried to push their car to try and outright win the race had it not been for the penalty they had been informed about with well over 10 laps to go. Hamilton, for his part, said he had tried to outright win the race but couldn’t do it, but that might not be the tune hums if the FIA does end up reversing the penalty and award Vettel the win.
Toto Wolff, team principal at Mercedes warned Ferrari against going for the review as he said he doesn’t believe there is any merit in their case and Vettel was in the wrong here. He warned that if the FIA finds more evidence they could end up adding further penalties to Ferrari and Vettel and that is why Ferrari should stay away from the review. This however has not deterred Ferrari as they are going ahead with the review.
Ferrari bring in Front-wing changes :
Meanwhile the operations and design team at Ferrari are not sitting idle. They have brought further aero upgrades after bringing in Engine upgrades to the Canadian GP as they still try to figure out why the car that showed so much promise in pre-season has looked so far behind the Mercedes on most circuits thus far.