F1 »

Lauda slams exhaust-blowing U-turn F1's 'biggest farce'

Former three-time F1 World Champion Niki Lauda has branded the FIA's embarrassing dithering over the off-throttle exhaust-blowing saga at Silverstone last weekend 'absurd' and 'the biggest farce ever'
Rarely shy when it comes to proffering his opinion – albeit one palpably not appreciated by Lewis Hamilton of late – former three-time F1 World Champion Niki Lauda has slated the sport's on-off-on-off blown-exhaust saga of the past few weeks as 'the biggest farce ever'.

The practice of off-throttle exhaust-blowing – gaining aerodynamic performance by using the engine's electronic systems to send a full blast of exhaust gases into the diffuser when the driver is off the throttle in corners – was outlawed by the FIA in the build-up to last weekend's British Grand Prix at Silverstone.

The regulation was subsequently altered and amended repeatedly over the course of the meeting, even mid-session during practice, leading to a press conference showdown between rival team principals Christian Horner and Martin Whitmarsh – and the bewilderment of competitors and fans alike.

Lauda contends that the whole episode has done the sport and the FIA no favours at all, and admits that he hopes the governing body does not change its mind once again after the twelve teams unanimously agreed on Sunday to revert to the pre-clampdown, Valencia situation from next weekend's German Grand Prix onwards. The Austrian legend added that he would be disappointed indeed if the rumours about the ban being primarily an effort to rein in Red Bull Racing's F1 2011 dominance transpired to be true.

“If that was so, it would be the greatest insolence,” the 62-year-old told N-TV, questioning the FIA's motivation behind the unusual mid-season rule change. “You cannot punish someone just because he is better.

“[It was] the biggest farce ever. The crucial thing is that absolutely no-one was protesting; the practice was tacitly accepted by all the teams. Suddenly the FIA and Charlie Whiting had the idea to change the rules in the middle of the season. I personally don't understand it. I very much hope that this absurdity stops now, and that we and the audience know at the Nürburgring in two weeks exactly what the rules are.”

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
FIA flag. British Formula One Grand Prix.Silverstone, UK.July 8th 2007.
17.04.2011- Garry Connelly (AUS), FIA Steward and Charlie Whiting (GBR), Race director and safety delegate
26.03.2011- Sebastian Vettel (GER), Red Bull Racing, RB7 and Charlie Whiting (GBR), Race director and safety delegate
Race, Charlie Whiting (GBR), Race director and safety delegate  and Christian Horner (GBR), Red Bull Racing, Sporting Director
Lotus Renault GP, R31, exhaust system
Lotus Renault GP, R31, exhaust
27.03.2011- Nikki Lauda (AU)
Niki Lauda (AUT), Malaysian F1 Grand Prix, Sepang, Kuala Lumpar, 21st-23rd, March 2008
05.08.2006 Budapest, Hungary,  Niki Lauda (AUT) - Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 13, Hungarian Grand Prix, Saturday
Saturday, Bernie Ecclestone (GBR), President and CEO of Formula One Management and Nikki Lauda (AU)
Sebastien Ogier, Red Bull, RB7, F1 test [Credit: Red Bull Content Pool]
Singapore Grand Prix
Max Verstappen (NLD) Red Bull Racing RB13
Max Verstappen (NLD) Red Bull Racing RB13
Max Verstappen (NLD) Red Bull Racing RB13
Max Verstappen (NLD) Red Bull Racing RB13
Max Verstappen (NLD) Red Bull Racing RB13
Max Verstappen (NLD) Red Bull Racing RB13

Join the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register before adding your comments.

Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.

© 1999 - 2017 Crash Media Group

The total or partial reproduction of text, photographs or illustrations is not permitted in any form.