Christian Horner claims the FIA ​​is ‘obviously biased’ towards Mercedes over the F1 porpoise decision

Christian Horner has had six straight wins for Red Bull but is unhappy with what he describes as a “bias” towards Mercedes. (Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images)

Red Bull team boss Christian Horner has claimed that the FIA’s technical guideline on Formula 1 porpoise is “obviously” biased towards competitor Mercedes.

The Motor Sport Federation intervened last week after drivers from some teams spoke out about painful injuries they sustained at the hands of porpoises during F1 races. Seven-time world champion Lewis Hamilton in particular had trouble getting out of his car at the end of the Azerbaijan Grand Prix due to severe back pain.

Porpoising is the name of an aerodynamic quirk that causes cars to bounce wildly at high speeds, then sending high loads through drivers’ bodies and bouncing their heads violently in the cockpit. The problem is new for 2022 and was caused by F1’s return to ground effect aerodynamics for the first time since the 1980s, which results from air being pushed back and forth rapidly under the floor of the car.

The Mercedes team has suffered worse than any other from porpoises in 2022 so far, but drivers from other teams including Pierre Gasly, Daniel Ricciardo and Carlos Sainz called for immediate action after the Baku race.

For the Canadian Grand Prix, the FIA ​​stepped in and released a new technical guideline directing teams to jump within a certain limit. Despite the potentially compromising teams suffering the most from rebounding, Horner was furious that a midseason change was being made, even for health and safety reasons.

‘That [porpoising] The problem with Mercedes is more serious than with any other car,” said Horner. “That’s certainly up to the team, it’s in their control to deal with it. It doesn’t affect others. I know they said other drivers complained [but] Our drivers have never complained about porpoises. Certainly we had no problem with jumping.’

“You can’t suddenly change the technical regulations in the middle of a season. If a car is dangerous, a team should not use it. It has that choice. Or the FIA, if they feel a single car is dangerous they always have a black flag available.”

Horner further claimed that the technical guideline was evidence of the FIA’s bias towards Mercedes.

This is obviously designed to solve the problems of a team that was the only team that showed up [in Canada] so even in advance of [technical directive]. So, work that out.’

The 2022 Formula 1 campaign continues with the British Grand Prix at Silverstone over the weekend of July 1-3.

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General Sports Christian Horner claims the FIA ​​is 'obviously biased' towards Mercedes over the F1 porpoise decision

Nate Jones

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