Mercedes believe porpoising issues ‘solved’ amid Red Bull fury at FIA intervention

The FIA’s intervention ahead of the Canadian Grand Prix caused controversy

FILE: FIA to act after F1 drivers complain about ‘porpoising’ back pain

Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff believes their struggles with ‘porpoising’ have been “solved” as Red Bull reacted furiously to the intervention of the FIA at the Canadian Grand Prix last weekend.

Wolff has said his team worked out a solution for the issue at the Spanish Grand Prix at Barcelona only to struggle with the low ride of the W13 on the bumpy street tracks in Monaco and Azerbaijan.

It led to both Lewis Hamilton and George Russell suffering from physical pain as a result of the ‘bouncing’ and, in response, triggered a technical directive from the FIA over concerns of driver safety ahead of the Montreal race.

Wolff’s Red Bull counterpart, Christian Horner, has accused Mercedes and their drivers of overplaying their safety concerns as an excuse for poor performance and said the FIA’s intervention was “overtly biased” in the team’s favour.

The FIA are set to have further discussions with teams over the issue but for Mercedes, Wolff was confident that their focus has now shifted to the “stiffness” of their suspension rather than ‘porpoising’.

"I think in a way we have dissected what we define as porpoising or bouncing, and it is that the porpoising, which is the aerodynamic movement of the car, I think that’s solved and we got on top of this around Barcelona," Wolff said after Hamilton and Russell finished third and fourth in Montreal.

"It is more that the ride of the cars is really what causes the comments of the drivers. The cars are simply all too stiff. The kerb ride is bad, the bump ride is bad and I would say that now, with dissecting this problem, you can tackle it better.

"What we see in the cars is just the stiffness. You look at some of the slow motions from the two leading cars and the Alpines, you see that they are bouncing off the kerb in a very hard way.

"This is what the drivers actually complained about, the stiffness of the car. This is something we need to look at: how we can reduce the impact. And of course, the smoother the track, the better. The lower the kerbs, the less we see this phenomenon."

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in