Helmut Marko slams Mercedes over FIA directive with ‘simple solution’ to bouncing woes
F1: BBC hosts say car problems are ‘frustrating’ for Hamilton
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Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko has accused Mercedes of trying to manipulate the FIA into helping them by clamping down on the porpoising issue that has plagued the efforts of Lewis Hamilton and George Russell since the start of pre-season testing. The Silver Arrows have struggled to cope with the problem in comparison to their Constructors’ Championship rivals and have recently called on the FIA to act in the interests of driver safety after Hamilton was left with back pain after this month’s Azerbaijan Grand Prix.
The governing body went on to respond in the form of a technical directive ahead of last weekend’s race in Canada in which they outlined measures to ensure that teams are running their cars in a safe manner. Marko was less than impressed with the FIA’s intervention, though, as he insisted that Mercedes will benefit to a greater degree than any other team on the grid.
“I don’t think the FIA’s decisions are right,” Marko told Sky Sport Germany. “One team, Mercedes, has the biggest problems and then they react in the middle of the season.
“There is a simple solution, you just have to raise the car. Then you don’t have this bouncing anymore, but you lose speed.
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“The fact that they are now reacting in this way and trying to impose such powers on the FIA, which practically determine the set-up of the cars, is a quick fix that has certainly not been thought through.
“There are still improvements to be made, because the parameters are far too vague. One would be exposing oneself to arbitrariness, that would mainly affect the team that complained about it.”
Marko’s comments on the matter echoed those made by Red Bull team principal Christian Horner after Max Verstappen’s latest victory at the Canadian Grand Prix on Sunday. Horner also suggested that the FIA only decided to intervene in order to assist Mercedes, who have been most affected by porpoising over the course of the campaign to date.
“It seems very unfair at this point of the year when there’s only really one team that’s missed the target,” Horner told Reuters when quizzed on the topic in Montreal.
“Is it right to change everything for that one team or should the one team change to get itself more in line? Personally I would put the emphasis on the team to get itself together.”
Meanwhile, it remains to be seen whether Mercedes will be able to iron out their issues with bouncing when F1 returns at next weekend’s British Grand Prix. The four long straights at Silverstone could pose a number of issues for the Silver Arrows, though, as they look to follow up on a productive race in Canada by claiming another welcome haul of points at the next time of asking.
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