Allegations thrown between teams in F1's controversial cheating scandal
Search Driven for vehicles for sale
Another prominent F1 figure has backed up accusations levelled against Racing Point as the team defends itself after being caught in a cheating storm.
Otmar Szafnauer’s outfit is dealing with the fallout of being fined $720,000 and docked 15 points after its brake ducts were ruled to have been designed by Mercedes. Authorities determined they were copied from Mercedes’ 2019 championship-winning car and while Racing Point admits it used the Silver Arrows as inspiration, it denies doing anything illegal and is appealing its penalties.
Teams like Renault and Ferrari are appealing against the leniency of the punishment, arguing Racing Point should face harsher sanctions for using illegal car parts.
McLaren boss Zak Brown said Racing Point’s claim it designed similar brake ducts to Mercedes by simply looking at photographs was “BS” — an assertion that has been supported by the former boss of F1 team Jordan and Midland, which later became Force India and now competes as Racing Point.
Colin Kolles said the photograph explanation doesn’t pass the sniff test.
“From photos, you cannot copy a car,” Kolles told German broadcaster Sport 1.
“It’s not just about the brake ducts. It’s about the whole concept of the car. It was not just copied from photos.
“(It’s more than) just parts, they also had certain data.
“I was told they had a 60 per cent wind tunnel model and a show car as a template, from which parts were scanned and then converted into CAD data.
“Otherwise the concept could not work.”
Last week, Red Bull boss Christian Horner dragged Mercedes into the scandal by posing the question about what role the Silver Arrows played. He suggested: “If the team in question are guilty of receiving, surely the team that has provided has also been in breach of those regulations?”
Kolles alluded to Mercedes chief Toto Wolff’s close relationship with Racing Point boss, Canadian billionaire Lawrence Stroll, when commenting on the matter.
“Many other things have happened that, in my opinion, were not entirely compliant,” he said.
“I think they have a very, very close connection.
“This is my personal opinion, but that’s not just my opinion, other people have that opinion too.”
Wolff has defended Racing Point and angrily shot down critics of his own team, saying it’s done “nothing wrong”.