After the whirlwind of action over the past few weeks in Formula 1 the dust is finally settling.
Brawn GP, Toyota and Williams found a loophole in the regulations regarding the rear diffuser. They took it and at the pre-season tests they were considerably quicker than the other cars. The other teams complained, the FIA provisionally said that they were legal – as did the stewards at the Australian Grand Prix – and more recently an appeal has been considered and rejected.
Forgive me for being cynical but do we really think that the other teams, if they had spotted the loophole, would have thought that it just ‘wouldn’t be cricket’ if they were to follow it up? No. That is about as likely as Mr Mosley putting a ‘Spank it to the Max’ sticker on the rear of his car (an item you may be interested to hear that can be bought at the Nürburgring).
What’s more, Ross Brawn approached the other teams before the season started asking whether they wanted to clarify that area of the new rules. They politely declined.
Formula 1 is all about (restricted) innovation. And I admire any team that can gain an advantage by legally interpreting the rules in a different way. If the FIA was to rule the other way at the appeal and claim that the diffusers were illegal then it would have been a sad, sad day for the sport. What was quite telling was the fact that certain teams started redesigning their rear diffusers as soon as they saw the Brawn GP, Toyota and Williams cars, long before they were declared legal…