Sergio Perez, Sauber, Melbourne, 2011

Kobayashi and Perez disqualified from results

2011 Australian Grand PrixPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

Sergio Perez, Sauber, Melbourne, 2011
Sergio Perez, Sauber, Melbourne, 2011

Both Saubers have been disqualified from the Australian Grand Prix due to a technical infringement.

Sergio Perez and Kamui Kobayashi therefore lose their seventh and eighth place finished in the race.

Their upper rear wing element was found not to conform to the regulations.

The change promotes Felipe Massa to seventh and Sebastien Buemi to eighth.

It also means both Force India drivers have moved up into the points, with Adrian Sutil taking nine and Paul di Resta scoring the final point on his debut.

See the revised results in full:

Update: Sauber have announced they will appeal the decision.

James Key said: “This is a very surprising and disappointing result.

“It appears that there is a question over the top surface of the uppermost rear wing element, this area is not the working surface of the component and therefore relatively unimportant to its function.

“Certainly this has not lead to any performance advantage. We are checking the design of the parts now to better understand the situation and we intend to appeal the decision made by the stewards.”

The FIA found them in breach of articles 3.10.1 and 3.10.2 of the technical regulations.

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202 comments on “Kobayashi and Perez disqualified from results”

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  1. But was this the reason that Perez could finish the race with only one stop? I really don’t know.

  2. How can this be???

    Aren’t they supposed to be scrutinized and thoroughly checked to conform to the technical regulations BEFORE they are allowed to race or even be entered as a viable vehicle.
    Think the FIA need to give themselves a long hard look, seeing as they gave it the green light to race in first place…

    1. It is the same attitude behind the FIA allowing HRT to enter the championship and give them money without actually making sure they will turn up with a reasonable car.

      “Take the money now and sort it all out afterwards”…

  3. As has been pointed out elsewhere, why was this not picked up in pre-race scrutineering?

    1. Hope Sauber can appeal.

      1. Update: Sauber have announced they will appeal the decision.

    2. They don’t test all the cars on every detail.

      Jo Bauer’s Technical report (on the FIA website) shows a huge amount of checks that they performed though. Guess Suaber was just unlucky? Or maybe they test every car in the top 10?

  4. This reminds me Kubica’s debut – this was also place in points (7th afair) and he was also disqualified (weight problem) in Sauber car. Good sign for Perez :)

  5. I’ll be interested to hear what Martin Brundle (fifth on debut, later disqualified for fuel irregularities) might have to say about Perez’s situation…

    1. Kubica was also DSQed on debut wasn’t he?

      1. Yes, underweight.

  6. Probably what happened was that the parts suffered from stress and their property changed. Or else the FIA should tell us how that car passed the post qualifying scrutineering. For all you know just 1mm caused the failure.
    Hamilton’s care will show uneven flore damage which will hamper performance than if the floor was uniformly worn out.
    So Coulthard just making noise about his ex team that lost patience with him.

    1. I think with the floor it has to be over a certain area, rather than just the front edge, like you said it would have hampered rather than helped, and especially with the drag and resistance. To be honest he’s lucky he didnt do a Webber if it had dug in…

  7. WHAT!!! This sucks bigtime.

  8. bugger. thats a shame, but as they say, rules are rules.

    1. But it looks like that’s not the same case with Hamilton. It seems rules are not same for everyone.

      1. there’s no reason to suggest hamilton’s car broke the rules

      2. Well its obvious McLaren didnt plan to make that happen, if indeed the plank was destroyed they may have been more lenient as it was accident damage, while Sauber put the parts on the car even if they didnt know they were against the rules, or they knew they were illegal and used them anyway.

        1. Both cars having the same issue shows that it was at least by design – maybe design error, or wrong design, but it wasn’t coincidence. Could still be McLaren made Hamilton’s bib not strong enough, but for all we know, the wear wasn’t severe enough, or clearly enough “race damage” to still pass.

    2. I wondered how long it will take this year for the stewards to prove once more that they are inconsistent imbeciles. In past years RBR, Macca have been asked to change minor performance parts for the next race, because they don’t comply, thats fair enough. But now Sauber get DSQ’ed for non performance part and such formality as concave radius curvature of the wing flap, this is madness.

      1. But now Sauber get DSQ’ed for non performance part

        Just because the guy who designed it says doesn’t give performance doesn’t mean it’s true.

        1. Yeah, he would say that wouldn’t he.

          Hard to tell really. It does seem a very minor thing, but who knows what difference it might make in effect.

          As you pointed out, both Saubers were very high on the top speeds, so its no wonder their wings got closely looked at just in case.

          But its sad we have the first race and the first DSQ (although finding this only later in the season would be pretty bad as well) and the first appeal going.

  9. No it wasn’t the reason. By not making it into the top 10 in qualifying, Perez was able to save some fresh tyres. He could also start the race with brand new tyres, unlike his team mate. And new tyres last longer especially when not being driven very hard.

  10. How come it wasn’t picked in the Pre-race scrutineering?

  11. Beyond devastating :( Poor Perez and Kobayashi, this isn’t their fault! Not sure who to blame though.. The team? Or the FIA for allowing it to pass in the first place.. Would Sauber go as far as changing the car after it passing the FIA’s inspection?

    Would this infringement affect handling the tyres in anyway? If not Perez is still a star..

  12. Once again F1 destroys its own good news stories and creates a PR disaster…when will it learn?

    I presume the RBR front wing will be scrutinized again now and fully expect to see SV and MW excluded also……not.

    1. Rules are rules and they must be followed, even if the stewards aren’t always consistant with penalties. It’s still a real shame that this happened, Kobayashi and Perez drove really well today.

      1. Exactly. It’s a massive shame for the team but if they had an illegal part on the car, they should be punished accordingly.

        1. Agree completely, I’m devastated because this has become one of my favourite teams, and Perez had such a dream start to his career… But like slr said, rules are rules.

  13. “The test is conducted with a template and would not have come to light until after the race because not all FIA tests are conducted routinely every weekend.”

    That’ll be why the rule infringement wasn’t picked up until after the race. It’s Sauber’s fault for not complying with the rules.

    1. But even so, it surely should have udergone thorough scrutiny and every check that it complied prior to being issued with a certificate/license to take part in this season…
      Something stinks.

    2. How is it their fault, the FIA test the cars, it’s their responsibility to make sure the cars are not only safe but meet the requirements. They have Thursday, Friday and Saturday to do the checks there isn’t an excuse.

      Or are you saying it would be ok to have a car unsafe on the grid because the checks are only done after the grand prix? nonsense. The FIA are a joke to the world of motorsport time to bring ACO into the sport

      1. thatscienceguy
        27th March 2011, 13:13

        It’s not the FIA’s responsibility to make sure the cars fit the requirements, its the TEAMS responsibility to make sure their cars fit the requirements.

        1. Bingo. I don’t see how people are blaming the FIA for this, it was Sauber’s job to bring a legal car.

          For sure it is deeply unfortunate, but that’s F1 for you.

          To be honest the FIA has it’s hands tied, it can’t let this go or other wise FI and co. will get their back up about it.

      2. A team doesn’t just design a car and turn up without checking for themselves that it doesn’t break the rules.

        They are grownups and will take responsibility, instead of blaming the FIA for catching them breaking the rules.

        1. Or at least I thought they would until I saw the story Prisoner Monkeys posted below.

      3. Well, I agree that it would have been good to test this stuff before the race, but in the end the team are responsible for making their car comply to the rules, not the FIA.

  14. You can prove that rear wing was illegal but to a lesser extent, Mclaren and Ferrari – and mainly RedBull Racing have front wings which flexing, clearly against the written intention of the rules, but FIA say/do nothing.

  15. A real shame. Regardless, Perez still impressed. All we can hope is that no-one else gets away with anything similar in the future.

  16. James Key says it didn’t give them a performance advantage, but the stewards won’t are about that – what matters if is the rules are broken.

    And it can hardly help Sauber’s cause that their cars were quickest through the speed trap in qualifying.

    1. thatscienceguy
      27th March 2011, 13:25

      when teams change components by miniscule amounts to eek out every advantage they can get, I think he’ll have a hard time convincing anyone that a wing outside of the size limits won’t contribute to performance.

      As you say, size limits are size limits and you have to be within those limits. There’s no grey area there.

    2. Even taking that into account this technical issue should be detected before the race.

      As far as I know Sauber did not change any part of their cars during the race.

      They should not be disqualified for something that could be checked before the race (these parts of the cars were not hiden).

    3. If a rule is broken but safety is not compromised or performance gained then there should be no punishment.

      1. That’s opening a whole new can of worms there…

  17. Younger Hamii(Formally Younger Hamilton)
    27th March 2011, 13:22

    WHAT IS THIS?? Seriously i first assumed but their Cars were underweight similar to what happened to Jenson in Imola 2005 but something with the ‘Upper Rear Wing element’ I think that ridiculous Disqualification Ruins Sergio’s and Kamui’s Confidence especially the fact they’re young drivers.But **** Happens in Sport now i really hope they get some decent points on the board in Malaysia.

    **** the FIA

    1. I don’t think this will ruin Kobayashi’s or Perez’s confidence. They both performed really well today, they were disqualified through no fault of their own.

    2. thatscienceguy
      27th March 2011, 13:28

      I think you meant to say “**** Sauber for not building a car within the rules.”

      1. Don’t be too harsh on Sauber… they just don’t have a Newey and a billion dollars in sponsorship, to get them to the top of the grid.

        They tried to design around what they thought was a loophole on the regs and they lost.

        It’s happened to bigger teams.

        1. i dont think they tried to find a loophole, there isnt any grey area in those regs

          1. This isn’t a loop hole. It’s just them messing up by .5 of a MM.
            @Alex BKK, you don’t need Newey or a billion dollars to measure something correctly or read the rules.

  18. Heartbreak for Perez. A rule is a rule though and don’t see a successful appeal.

    Well done though to Paul Di Reta who now scores his first point if DSQ stands.

    1. Scoring a point in your first F1 race is a pretty big deal.

      I don’t think it matters how you get it.

  19. The race was so boring that stewards decided to step in.

    In my opinion one of the worst races ever.

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