Horner: We're 'extremely confident' we will win appeal
26 March 2014 – Red Bull Racing Team Principal Christian Horner has reiterated that he doesn’t think the squad broke the fuel flow rules in Australia and has added that he is ‘extremely confident’ Daniel Ricciardo’s second place finish will be reinstated.
Ricciardo was stripped of his debut F1 podium post-race when the stewards ruled that his car had consistently surpassed the 100kg/h fuel flow limit. Speaking ahead of this weekend Malaysian Grand Prix at the Sepang International Circuit, Horner was adamant his team hadn’t done anything wrong and he explained why he felt that was the case.
“We are appealing on the grounds that we do not believe - and we are extremely confident that - we haven’t broken the rules, that we haven't exceeded the 100kg/h of fuel that is permitted to be utilised by the car and the engine. So that was the reason for our appeal, we feel we have a strong case and it will be down to the appeal court to ultimately decide,” he told Sky Sports News.
Asked to explain why he thinks they have a strong case, Horner added: “I think our whole case, the whole dispute, is based on which reading is correct. We have a sensor that is drifting and isn't reading correctly versus a fuel rail that we know is calibrated and we know that it hasn't varied throughout the weekend and has subsequently been checked and found to be not faulty and hasn't moved or varied at all since it was installed on the car prior to the weekend.
“Our argument is very simple - that we haven't broken the Technical Regulations. That we haven't exceeded the fuel flow rate and that the sensor, which hopefully we will be able to demonstrate in the appeal, is erroneous. I think the problem with the Technical Directive is that as we have seen in the Pirelli tyre case or the double diffuser case, the directive, as it now states on the bottom of the directive, is the opinion of the Technical Delegate - it is not a regulation, it is not regulatory, it is purely an opinion. We are bound by the Technical and Sporting Regulations. 5.1.4 of the Technical Regulations says you must not exceed 100kg/h of fuel usage - we haven't done that. Therefore our view is we haven't broken the regulations and Technical Directives are of non-regulatory value.”
Red Bull’s appeal will be held next month on April 14 - the week leading up to the Chinese Grand Prix, the fourth round in the 2014 F1 World Championship – with the FIA’s International Court of Appeal convening in Paris to look into the dispute.