Nico Rosberg, Mercedes, Silverstone, 2016

Rosberg relegated to third after radio penalty

2016 British Grand PrixPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

Nico Rosberg has been relegated to third place in the final classification for the British Grand Prix.

The Mercedes driver has been given a ten-second time penalty after assistance given by his team on the radio was ruled a breach of the regulations.

The stewards noted: “Having considered the matter extensively, the stewards determined that the team gave some instructions to the driver that were specifically permitted under Technical Directive 014-16.”

“However the stewards determined that the team then went further and gave instructions to the driver that were not permitted under the technical directive, and were in breach of article 27.1 of the Sporting Regulations, that the driver must drive the car alone and unaided.”

The following radio messages involving Rosberg were broadcast late in the race:

Message
Nico Rosberg Gearbox problem.
Tony Ross Chassis default zero, one.
Tony Ross Avoid seventh gear Nico.
Nico Rosberg What does that mean? I have to shift through it.
Tony Ross Affirm, Nico, affirm. You have to shift through it.

Rosberg’s demotion promotes Max Verstappen to second in the final classification.

See the updated race classification and championship points after Rosberg’s penalty

2016 British Grand Prix

[catlist id=15253 numberposts=5]Browse all British Grand Prix articles

267 comments on “Rosberg relegated to third after radio penalty”

  1. Only 10 seconds?

    1. they had to chose between 5, 10 sec and disqualification; those were i think the only available options.

    2. Looking at it, a 5 or 10 second penalty resulted in the same outcome for Rosberg, so it wouldn’t have made a different to the race which ever one was chosen
      but;
      this is the first penalty for the radio calls, and the teams themselves didn’t know what the penalty would/could be. I think they gave him the maximum so that there is now a precedent set, and the teams (and drivers) know what the penalty will be next time.

    3. sunny stivala
      11th July 2016, 7:26

      breaching 27.1 (driver must drive car unaided) and penalty reducing driver finishing position to 4th (10 seconds penalty) both team and driver gained more than they lost.

    4. Dan Rooke (@geekzilla9000)
      11th July 2016, 10:36

      I completely understand Mercedes’ aim here – if they thought there was a chance that the car might not finish then it was worthwhile taking a penalty hit and still getting points.

    5. Someone’s going to be eating 50 hamburgers :)

      1. Sorry
        A fellow member made a bet if Nico got a penalty they would eat 50 hamburgers ,
        Well I think it was in relation to Austraia ;)

  2. I think that this is a harsh penalty for Rosberg, unlike Austria where the penalty was too lenient. It should have just been a warning for the team for this one I think.

    1. It possibly helped him keep 2nd so I disagree. He should be punished.

      It’s a stupid rule but a rule’s a rule

      1. Yes. The rule is stupid, but if he violated an existing rule he must be penalized. I remember Lewis having issues in Baku and his engineer refused to give him instructions, I-m afraid Nico is paying for something that could be avoided if his engineer was totally aware of the consequences…

        1. @jcost Agreed, I hate the rule but if a team/driver break a rule to gain an advantage the stewards should have no choice but to penalise (particularly when there have recently been high profile cases recently where other drivers were disadvantaged by sticking to the rule).

          However, I don’t think his engineer was in any way naive in this case – he knew exactly what the rules were and the possible consequences. The decision to break the rule would have been calculated – the likely outcome of not breaking the rule would have been either a DNF or else a finish outside the top ten, so no points. The outcome of breaking the rule would have been less certain to them, from a best-case 2nd place finish with no punishment to a DQ (with perhaps the most-likely scenario being a 10s penalty = 3rd place finish). Both the best case and most likely outcomes were an improvement and the worst case was no worse than the alternative. In that situation Merc played it exactly right, the gambled with an intentional rule breach and won. I expect the team and Rosberg will be reasonably happy with the outcome.

          1. Absolutely agree. This was management and damage limitation.

          2. Completely agree. Can’t remember the team, but recently we had a conversation on radio, something like ‘ can’t tell you, what settings can I use, can’t tell you, is the problem the same as (Canada?), can’t tell you’. If a few seconds penalty is the going tarriff for, ‘do this and fix it’, they might as well ditch the rule now, because a few seconds versus DNF is now a given, no brainer.

        2. Now they know. If your driver runs in to problems while being 11 sec in the lead, just tell him what to do with penalty he will win with 1 sec.

        3. @jcost
          I feel it was a different situation in Baku. In that case Hamilton was just in the wrong mode, the car was working just not at 100%. Here Rosberg’s car had a technical issue and might have broken down completely if they hadn’t told him.

          1. I agree with @george here @jcost, baku was something completely different. Here the fact that they told him clearly where the problem was was ok, but they should have refrained from confirming the second part (about shifting through the gear) as that was the part that crossed the line.

            In Baku, I think the penalty would have been greater because there was no potentially race ending issue with the car, it was just not working to full potential (and the reward surely less than the difference between finising or not!)

          2. I don’t get this rule – if you are losing time because you are in the wrong engine mode you can’t get help but if you are doing to potentially DNF you can get help to stay in the race. Is it just me or this doesn’t make any sense?
            You either ban driver aid over radio completely or otherwise allow everything

          3. I think it’s about damaging your car/engine. Since the rules on parts (gearbox changes etc) are there, teams want to be able to avoid damage.

          4. Seems very similar to me. In Baku, Hamilton had a broken engine mode and the team refused to tell him what was broken. In Silverstone, Rosberg had a broken gear and the team told him which gear was broken and how to work around it.

            Agree it’s a silly rule though, they need to find a way to word the rule so that drivers can be told when a part of the car is broken without that being used to coach them.

      2. A rule’s a rule, except when it isn’t — like when we routinely ignored the rules and decided that the white line is the track limit for only half the drivers, yesterday.

        More utterly inconsistent rubbish from Charlie Whiting, who also ruined this race and gifted the win to Hamilton by calling for a safety car start in conditions we’d have happily raced on decades ago without issue. The old man has gone senile and needs to retire.

        1. Agreed mate, no need for safety car nanny-state start, full wets at moderately high speeds would likely have cleared any standing water quite quickly.

        2. @gweilo8888 Safety car start is ok in my view but it should have come in right after lap 1. It didn’t look that bad.

    2. The rules are there and I’d rather not have them, but as the rules are I completely agree with the penalty.

      It would have been fine if they had left it at the first message to prevent the car from being destroyed, but when they need to explain Rosberg how to shift gears and skip the broken one was just ridiculous.

      1. The message should have been retire the car, not how to fix the problem.

      2. @patrickl Where do you see that they needed to explain how to shift gears and skip the ‘broken’ one? Nico is the one that says what does that mean, I have to shift through it, and the team affirms that. Nico already knew the answer, obviously.

        1. If he knew the answer he shouldn’t have asked. It’s just dumb from whichever way you look at this.

    3. @ultimateuzair a DQ would have been harsh but fair, remember he finished the GP thanks to teams coaching, with his gearbox stuck in seventh he would have parked his car with zero points, I think the FIA were pretty kind with nico.

      1. You’re profile picture suggests you would have absolutely loved that I guess….

        1. @gdewilde my comment is based on facts even if I am not a Rosberg fan.

          1. The fact that you think Rosberg should have been handed a DQ for a problem that could have been race ending (thus a problem the team could help him with) is beyond me. The so called ‘team coaching’ is allowed if it keeps your car from breaking down before the chequered flag is waved.
            Force India-race engineers were just not smart enough to inform Perez of his brake problem last race, which would have been within the regulations if they could prove that it would have been race ending, So that is not a valid precedent.

            The only thing that got him penalized was the fact that the team (not Rosberg himself, but the team) decided to answer his question regarding his seventh gear usage for the remainder of the race. And the stewards clearly didn’t think that was a big enough infringement to disqualify him for the race.

            btw, if it had been Hamilton in this situation, would you have had a the same opinion? Frankly, I don’t think so…

    4. Why was the penalty in Austria “lenient”? The stewards couldn’t even refer to any specific regulation breach and came up with that weird “racing room” thing which doesn’t make any sense. What was Rosberg’s fault again? That he didn’t take the racing line while still allowing at least a full car’s width?

      1. They referred specifically to Article 38.1 for Causing a collision.

        Over the last decades this has been defined as that if another driver is ahead, you have to let him have the racing line. If you don’t and there is contact you get a penalty.

        1. Is that in the rules? Hamilton was not ahead enough to claim the advantage. He wasn’t even 50% ahead, and the stewards ruled he was “more than fully alongside”. Doesn’t sound like he had the right to dictate the line, but more like that he was there.
          I’m not aware of any such rule. I don’t see why a driver can’t take an aggressively defensive line if they leave enough room and if they don’t interfere with the line of someone who has won the advantage into the corner.
          But you are right about Article 38.1, though that article doesn’t explain the situation and is not part of the racing rules if I remember correctly.

          1. *someone who has NOT won the advantage

          2. It is part of the rules and like I said, the rule had been interpreted like that for decades.

            “ahead” means “more than fully alongside”. Not 50%, but just slightly ahead is enough.

            Mind you, on the straight it’s the other way around. Since Hamilton had his wing next to Rosberg’s tyre, Rosberg should have left space. For some reason the stewards decided to forego on that rule because it had not been “very long” that Hamlton was alongside. That’s nowhere in the rules ether btw. Just that you need to leave space on the straight.

        2. It is in the rules. You are allowed one move, and only after that you are supposed to leave room. Rosberg made just one move, so he was not supposed to leave room. And he started his move when Hamilton was still right behind him. The cars eventually made contact later.

          Again, the basic guideline to winning the advantage in corners is 50%. Always has been interpreted that way, though the regulations don’t really dictate anything. If it gets interpreted differently today, or depending on the politics involved, is a separate issue.

      2. They are consistent on this see Vettel today who I felt was just out of control. Nico made a rubbish attempt at forcing Hamilton off and came off worse.

        1. Yeah, Im not fan of Vettel, but I thought it was harsh. As you say, he made a mistake and locked up in iffy conditions, Rosberg’s seemed deliberate. On the other hand, Rosberg was defending, Vettel attacking. Maybe that evens it out?

          1. Vettel simply lost control, but he did push Massa out of the track and did pass him because of this. He would have most likely escaped the penalty if he had let Massa pass him again. He didn’t, so the penalty was fair.

    5. My only issue here resides with the criteria, which I believe is bias.

  3. Just 10 seconds? Okay.

    So since the penalty is known now expect Mercedes to give instructions to fix something before creating a gap to make up for the time lost.

    1. Horner was right. This sets a precedent for everyone for the rest of the season. On the plus side, I wouldn’t be surprised if this rule is soon abolished.

      1. Martin Brundle mentioned today that he heard these rules are actually going to get tighten even more next season

      2. The rule would get abolished if it involved either Lewis or Red Bull, until then it’s a rule that’s going to discriminate the smaller drivers and teams.

        1. Like rosberg and Mercedes?

          1. yeah, that’s was my reaction to ;)

        2. “The rule would get abolished if it involved either Lewis”

          And yet it did involve Lewis just a couple of races ago and we still have it! Seriously what is it with the anti-Hamilton brigade and their aversion to basic facts?

    2. Actually 10s seems a fair punishment then.
      Not even Mercedes has the luxury nowadays to give away 10s; e.g. risk of SC.
      And at least RBR seems able to get within 10s (they don’t even need to attack and overtaken).

    3. I’d go further. Any team, facing a possible race-ending problem, is now effectively able to tell its drivers exactly how to fix the problem provided it is more than 10 seconds ahead of 11th place (since even 1 point is better than 0).

      1. Yep!
        Sounds like a plan.

        Gaps are usually quite large by the end of the race.

    4. Simple now – if you are more than 10s ahead of the car behind you and have an issue, you can be coached through it.

      1. Depends. They can also DQ a driver. Or they could give 10s per individual violation / instruction.

        1. Says who? They made a precedent. The penalty is 10 seconds.

          1. They made a precedent. The penalty is 10 seconds.

            I can see your logic, but believe it is flawed.

            In F1, almost every penalty is decided on a case-by-case basis. If a similar thing happened, they would probably give the same penalty (or be branded inconsistent). However, if a team gave instructions in a different situation, the stewards are quite at liberty to give a different penalty (from a warning or reprimand to, I believe, DSQ).

            The stewards have a lot of leeway in deciding which penalties to hand out. I don’t think it’s possible to say “breaking this rule is a 10s penalty, there’s a precedent”.

          2. drmouse is correct.
            Rosberg may have gotten away with a 10 sec penalty only because there were mitigating factors involved:
            1) the problem to the car was terminal: it is one of the exceptions of the radio ban
            2) the actual offence was marginal: saying that he needed to “shift through 7th” instead of something like “don’t use 7th gear” (which would most likely be allowed under the terminal problem exception to the ban).
            3) It is the first year that this rule is in place and teams still try to find out what is permitted and what not

            If there were no such mitigating factors then the penalty could be more harsh. If for example there is a more profound violation such as coaching the driver on how to brake for a certain corner then the penalty would most likely be more severe.

  4. Adam (@rocketpanda)
    10th July 2016, 18:23

    Way too harsh a punishment for a ridiculous rule in the first place.

    1. I thought they would disqualify Rosberg as a penalty, especially that he could have ended out of the race in case he was not given the instructions.
      I think Mercedes thought there would be a penalty and took the risk anyway with nothing to lose. So they ended up having third place, risking 18 points and gaining 15 points. Thus, compared to the risk of not finishing the race, that was a win win situation for Rosberg.

      1. Ravenouscartoon
        10th July 2016, 20:41

        But the issues wasn’t really with the message how to fix the issue (that’s why there is a clause about ‘unless in a catastrophic event’ or something to that effect), it was the final exchange about skipping 7th gear and how to do it that caused the penalty.

    2. Rosberg has a gearbox issue and is told a setting to fix it, was then told to avoid seventh gear. Fine and within the rules. He then asks for clarification “do I have to shift through it”, his engineer confirms this. That contravines the rules. It should have been apparent to rosberg that if there is a problem with 7th avoid it!

      I think 10 seconds is fair. And after that overtake Max deserved to finish ahead of Rosberg!

      1. But he would have had to decide wether to shift through 7th to reach 8th or to use 6th as a maximum.
        Had he chosen the latter, he would have been a sitting duck for Max, so the engineer has now made a bigger decision than just getting the car to the flag.

        1. @johnnik That’s racing…

  5. I’m not saying I disagree with the ruling, but I do say that I totally disagree with the rule.

    A totally ridiculous situation, in my opinion. One that I feel only makes our sport look worse for it.

    1. Things were ok until fans took up arms (in complaints) against Mercedes and the sport authorities with what they called “driver coaching”. The complaints rose to the point where the sport authorities in appeasement to the fans felt they had to do something and voila radio ban, which I for one condemned.
      In recent times and since the advent of social media, the sport has undergone some changes which fans in turn go ahead to condemn.
      Either we are measured and smart in our criticism of the sport or we accept whatever solutions the authorities hand out to quell fans dissatisfaction.

      1. Jeffrey Hamlin
        10th July 2016, 19:08

        The fans and teams alike were against the radio communications ban, especially after Baku – BUT no rules were changed. Just social/team noise about the issue. FIA did not make any changes.

        What happened today, was
        1.) Either Nico’ engineer not realizing what he could not say.
        2.) Mercedes thinking, “let’s roll the dice, the stewards havent been so bad in penalties” – easier to beg for forgiveness than ask for permission
        3.) I do not see much difference between the Baku situation, but maybe there was not sufficient onboard information available for the driver to be able to figure out they should skip the gear, and downshift if stuck.

      2. The “solution” doesn’t even stop driver coaching (the specified problem) as it is easy to circumvent without being spotted – if one is trying to avoid an obvious conflict. I maintain that it was only made this obvious in the first place because Mercedes was reacting to an interpretation of the regulations in Austria that did not appear to be supported by the regulations around radio communication. They needed clarity on what was going on and the only way to get it was to be blatant next time a sufficiently severe problem arose.

      3. The FA has never listened to fans. If they did they would never have pushed the insane qualifying rules at the seasons start. Those idiots just make up nonsense to look useful. This anti-coaching rules are more of the same. F1 is a team sport and always will be. When it suits them it is a solo driver mission.

    2. +1. I’m all for the radio restrictions but maintain that a driver shouldn’t be forced to have a gearbox failure as a result.

      1. The merc is still designed to be driven by engineers, how is that the fia’s fault?

    3. Honestly I’m glad the driver coaching has gone, I’d rather see them think for themselves. In this case Rosberg could probably have worked it out for himself anyway.

      If the cars are too difficult for the drivers to control them, then the teams need to make it simpler. If that means they have to come in to the pits when they get a problem like this then so be it.

        1. Double plus correct!

    4. People really should read the verdict and understand that the penalty is not for the initial message he got for fixing the gearbox issue. He got the penalty for asking how to drive the car.

      So there is nothing ridiculous about this penalty, I think it’s ridiculous that Rosberg needs to ask how to shift gears.

      1. I agree with @patrickl here. This finally gives us (and the teams) somewhat of a clearer view of where the limit is. A driver CAN be told about a severe issue that is would end his race (gearbox issue, 7th gear) but the driver can not be helped in exactly how he is going to react (i.e. “shifting through it”).

        Before that we had teams not even telling their drivers about critical failures (brakes see FI last race) because they would feel risking a penalty.

        And while the radio silence we got is annoying, I am sure most of us would like to hear far more, the times we saw Smedley telling Massa how to drive as if he was the Co-driver in a rallye car, and similar things, were just getting out of hand.

      2. But we are consistently told or made to believe that he is the smart one, the engineer that builds the cars and reads all the manuals while Hamilton jets around the world. Remember Baku?
        Shocking to hear the dude ask how to shift through gears.
        I always knew who the smart one among the two is, as results don’t lie, while the other is simply a hot head who continues to be buoyed by unfounded theories built on lies.

        1. Heh, well that’s nonsense too of course. I doubt Rosberg really does know how to operate the car any better than Hamilton does.

          Especially since it was Rosberg who messed up the engine settings in Spain at the start and again in Baku.

        2. Yeah, the ‘Hamilton forgot to read the manual’ comments back in Baku do look a bit ridiculous.

          1. Notice how all this nonsense advocates have disappeared @charleski .

      3. Rosberg was just asking for a clarification. He was told to avoid using 7th gear, that could either mean don’t go higher than 6th or it can mean don’t put too much torque through it.

        1. Exactly.
          The way I read the ruling, it seems to me that if ROS’ engineer had given every instruction to handle the imminent failure in a single batch, the entire penalty would have been avoided. It was the incomplete information that forced ROS into the damning part of the conversation.

        2. Therefore it is smart to ask for help when in trouble.

        3. Yes, so he was asking how to shift gears. Which is not allowed.

          It’s really baffling that he even asked, since you hear the drivers talk often enough about certain gears not being available to them during a race.

        4. William Jones
          11th July 2016, 9:15

          In what possible scenario could you see an f1 car drive silverstone and not go higher than 6th gear – could you imagine the hanger straight – he would be lapped by every other car out there and/or destroy his engine.

          1. If the alternative is to get stuck in 7th gear for the rest of the race, I think I might prefer being able to go no higher than 6th.

      4. Absolutely on the nail Patrickl ! I had pointed out to others in the original comments on an earlier
        post that people seemed to be pushing the idea that Rosberg was being singled out for punishment
        when in fact his team mate suffered equal or worse treatment in Baku. But whatever one may think
        of the Hamilton/Baku debacle, Rosberg’s engineer took his driver well over the red line when he
        began telling him how to use his gearbox ! Wow !
        As far as I was concerned he was bang to rights !

        MmM…Mmm doesn’t this make the rest of the season ‘interesting’ ?
        Though oddly enough I do miss some of the weirder conversations between drivers and
        team bosses/Engineers.

      5. Very good observation, the engineer could have responded with ‘sorry Nico we can’t advise’ to the question. They must have felt it was critical.

        1. Indeed, maybe that’s the way they tried to play this one, but a driver should be able to understand not to use the gear that he just found was not working.

          So I guess that message on not using the 7th gear was already going too far, but then for Rosberg to ask how to actually shift gears to skip the broken one is just bizarre.

          I wonder if the stewards would have let it go without penalty if the last two messages hadn’t happened.

          1. @patrickl Based on the judgement I wonder if the original instruction from the engineer had been something like “Minimize time in seventh gear Nico” instead of “Avoid seventh gear Nico” (i.e. making it clear that he could shift through it) whether the FIA would have allowed it?

            It doesn’t seem right but to me it’s what the penalty suggests?

          2. If you read the radio communication at the top of this page you can see which messages were given by the team. The first one was allowed. The second one might have gone too far. Still Rosberg would not have needed that. A driver should know how to deal with a faulty gear. It happens quite often

      6. I’m not so sure. I think the issue here is whether the “chassis default zero, one” part was an instruction or just the specification of a fault. If the former, it falls in the same category of things the team felt they could not tell Hamilton in Baku. It sounded to me, and the nbc team, like an instruction for a fix, I.e., just like the gear avoidance message we all agree violated the rule. To me saying “default” is an instruction to revert to some alternative (original) setting, unless the change is automatic. I think the team got away with a bit here, by convincing the stewards that “chassis default” was not an instruction.

        1. I think the team got away with a bit here, by convincing the stewards that “chassis default” was not an instruction.

          IIRC the team are allowed to tell the driver to set a “default” setting in the case of a sensor or actuator being faulty and the software not picking it up. In this case it is just setting the engine into a mode which ignores this and uses sane defaults instead. The selected mode cannot give more performance than the original mode (when it is working).

          1. That is true. I’ve seen a more complete report. And furthermore it appears that the team first checked the “chassis default” message with the stewards. Personally I’m baffled why the no-instructions rule has this strange loop-hole, where a driver can be directed to a setting provided that the fix is a change to a “default.” And a setting that gives the same performance as before is by definition a fix. It seems the FIA is making a hardware/software distinction in reference to sensors or actuators. Thus, in Baku, Hamilton’s problem was a software issue and thus not eligible for the exception—no sensor or actuator was at issue.

      7. @patrickl You seem to continually repeat a falsehood that makes no sense and shows you are trying to make Nico sound like a fool. You claim he is asking how to shift gears, like he’s some amateur, when if you read the radio comm it is obvious that Nico follows up his own question with the correct answer… I have to shift through it… and then the team affirms that.

        Nico did nothing wrong here, as hard as you are trying to make it so…it is the team, by affirming what Nico said first, that caused the penalty. They needed to simply say we cannot comment. Nico, after the race, said he didn’t think he’d get a penalty, because he trusted his team to know when to answer and when to say they can’t answer. In this case the team blew it for him and will now have a better understanding of the rules that even the stewards needed hours to determine.

        1. He asked what he needed to do. Period. No falsehood., but 100% factually correct.

          If you actual hear the message, the intonation sounds like despair. ie he really doesn’t know which makes the team decide to actually answer his rookie question.

          So yeah he really did make himself look like a fool.

          Doesn;t even matter if he did or didn;t know. Either way it’s a humongous blunder to ask something so stupid and risk a penalty.

  6. Bit of a joke really. The issue in Baku cost Hamilton more time than that and wasn’t even as bad. Now teams can work out if they’ll suffer more than 10 seconds or not and just inform the drivers if it’s best to do so. I don’t agree with the rules to begin with but I’d say Rosberg gained massively from this as without the info he wouldn’t have been on the podium.

    1. Absolutely, if Rosberg had been left by himself to work out what his problem was, as Hamilton had to do, he probably would have been much much further down the field. Stupid rule to start with but a rule nonetheless, and the breaking of it bought a rightly imposed penalty.

      1. Nico has already said that without the advice he’d have had to retire. So breaking the regulation was worth 15 points to him and Mercedes, taking the penalty into account. (The only penalty available to the stewards where the infraction would yielded fewer points was disqualification).

    2. Nico is the pre-crowned 2016 champion. No doubt about that.
      To deliberate for 5 hours over what is a clear breach of sporting rules and then come out with a measly 10 second penalty is pathetic and makes a joke of their seriousness with punishing people who break such rules.
      The point is they do not want to disadvantage the guy’s chances of lifting the trophy.

      1. He should have been disqualified, period.

        1. I agree. Disqualification should have been the penalty, because in truth without the instruction, it’s very possible he would not have finished the race. Just last week, Force India could not give instruction to Sergio Perez, and brake failure was the result leading to no classification. Now you have a situation where rules are in place for how many power units, gear boxes, etc. etc. teams are allowed to use in a season, and Mercedes likely just saved one from detonation by issuing clear orders.

          The FIA is a joke. They make draconian, arbitrary rules to start, and then they compound their buffoonery by not applying penalties equitably across manufacturers. Complete joke.

          1. Well said @medman

      2. How do you arrive at that ridiculous conclusion? What a nonsense…

      3. What a ridiculous comment!

    3. Hamilton was losing only 0.2 seconds because of that issue in Baku. Him being so much slower was due to his frustration at playing with the buttons on his steering wheel.

      1. He never touched any buttons. The problem just disappeared after a while. By then he was so far back that he decided to safe the engine instead.

        Like apparently today he was saving his engine too.

      2. His time loss was due to team not telling him the mode he was in causing the issue, which team set up without informing him, Nico did his own change so he knew what was wrong…

        With the same logic, Nico should have suffered with frustration by playing with buttons as well until he cant figure it out himself! Which would have 100% loose him much more than just 10secs.. probably would cost him the race…

  7. Austria was far too lenient especially as he refused to admit his mistake, yes this was harsh but the rules are pretty clear.

    1. He ‘refused to admit his mistake’, because he admitted he was running LH to the outside, clumsily done, but in principle the same thing LH would have done. So there was no mistake from his perspective.

      As to this being pretty clear…obviously not, as NR’s first comments were that his team knew what they could and couldn’t say, which in hindsight turns out to be wrong, but in the heat of the moment NR had to trust that if he wasn’t being told ‘we can’t comment’ then no wonder after the race he felt he wouldn’t get a penalty. The fact that it took them so long to decide in favour of a penalty would also indicate the shades of grey to this. So…not so clear after all, but perhaps now a little more clear for all the teams and drivers.

  8. A least now we and teams know what the cost of radio help to drivers costs. I wish they had tried it with Lewis is Baku, 10sec is nothing considering the pace advantage Merc had there.

    1. No they coudn’t , from the team’s perspective. In Baku they didn’t knew what kind of penalty they could get and Lewis’s issue was not a serious enough to risk it, with Rosberg the situation is different because he could’ve retired from race if the engineer wouldn’t have helped him, that’s why they took the risk of getting a penalty, which they did. I assume from know on, teams at least have an idea about this penalty and that is 10 sec per instruction, if driver gets more instructions he should get 20, 30 sec, anyway will see…

      1. Nico was given two instructions.

    2. I sure wish Force India had tried it with Sergio Pérez in Austria!

  9. I think the bit they have taken issue with us when they told Nico to shift through 7th.
    It’s all well and good telling him which setting he needs to change to fix the immediate problem, it’s been demonstrated that the drivers can’t be expected to learn all the settings, but beyond that they were clearly giving driving instructions which go against the letter AND spirit of the rules.

    1. *taken issue with is

    2. No, they were explicitly NOT allowed to tell Lewis what mode to switch to when he had a problem the team had caused by leaving the car in the wrong mode on the starting grid. Lewis asked for help and was told: “We can’t tell you anything”. Now they decide to tell Nico not only what mode to put the car in but twice tell him how to drive through 7th gear.

      It’s a stupid rule, but they need to apply it evenly if they’re going to apply it…and Merc needs to treat it’s drivers equally. Why did they refuse Lewis then help Nico?

      1. Precisely. Something stinks.

      2. They didn’t help Nico in Baku having the exactly same problem as Nico.

        1. Lewis and Nico did not have the same issue in Baku. Nico put his car in the wrong setting halfway through the race; Lewis’ car was setup incorrectly from the beginning of the race without his knowledge.

          1. Not quite true there @darth-ecclestone. Yes, Hamilton was in that engine mode from the start and yes. But Rosberg did NOT switch to a wrong setting, he just switched to a different engine mode than he had been in before and when he then felt the car not deliver full power he had a bit of an easier time to solve it by getting back to the mode he was in before. It was not something Nico did wrong (nor Hamilton off course) but a foulty setting in one or more engine modes. Hamilton did have it worse, because he did not switch modes so did not find out what engine mode did work before to switch back to, I guess he must have tried most of them and that did lose him a lot of time.

            But it IS true that mercedes did not help either driver solve these issues, as they clearly were not critical issues that could potentially end their race.

      3. I really want to know whats in Technical Directive 014-16. I heard from the commentary it allows the team to advise of default modes on failures. If that is the case then, giving Nico the mode would be allowed, but advising of the work-around of avoiding 7th gear wouldn’t.

        I don’t think we can say that Nico and Lewis problem was the same, Nico was stuck in 7th gear and if they hadn’t solved it would have retired. Lewis had a sub optimal level of degenerative breaking. Nico’s gear box will presumably never race again, while Lewis’ engine is fine (although the engineer that set it wrong may not be.)

        The one that really gets me is Perez in Austria. If the team knew that he was so marginal on brakes that he was about to have a brake failure they really should be allowed to advise the driver.

        1. I’d like to know what is in each and every one of these Technical Directives and other hidden rules. How are we meant to know how things work if they’re not explained? Trying to explain the situation to my parents about the radio has been trying, and I’m vaguely familiar with the public regulations!

        2. You don’t have access to Google?

          That directive clarified which messages are allowed and which not:
          http://www.f1fanatic.co.uk/2016/03/18/fia-reveals-details-new-driver-radio-ban/

          Not sure if that is the latest version, but you get the idea.

      4. Ravenouscartoon
        10th July 2016, 20:50

        No. Lewis’ issue in Baku was not race ending, so no info was allowed to be passed to him, but if nico was not told this info, he would’ve been out of the race, so the team was allowed to help. Seriously, just read the damn conclusion to the investigation, learn what the penalty was actually for and stop comparing apples to oranges.

        1. Barry White
          10th July 2016, 22:39

          How was Rosbergs race ending? the data clearly shows he lost no pace after the help and that his 7th gear was working perfectly. In short his only issue was that he was slower without the reset.

        2. Rosberg could have finished the race in 6th gear. He might have lost some time, but losing 7th gear is not race ending.

  10. Kind of expected.

    Stupid rule regardless.

  11. absolutely ridiculous; I’m devastated.
    That will cost me the prediction competition win :-(

    1. will cost me a lot of points too(( I was so looking forward to finally getting a good haul…

    2. Worst thing ever… FiA be damned.

      1. I had Ham Ham Ros Ves RIC and Rai so this cost me a win i should protest!

    3. This is why I care most about this (as long as the year end championship isn’t decided by 3 points).

    4. Juan Fanger
      10th July 2016, 23:34

      @coldfly – while the penalty cost you a perfect score it didn’t cost you the win. In fact, you had shared maximum points with 12 others and sadly you had the worst pole prediction time of the lot (at only 1.3 seconds off). The biggest loser from this penalty is @christian.yongky at 0.068 seconds off pole, who would have won from @OEL F1 (0.213 secs). Then @sebsronnie, @Ooleeeo, @bosyber, @thetobs, @FoxWMB, @DinaVeer, @faiekf, @mymini, @Hazzapee, @Oscar and fnally yourself.

      It cost you and the other 12 players 26 Predictions Championship points.

      The new winners are grinners: @nbeechey, @tweak and @Indiana, who each now get 31 points.

      Congratulations to the new winners and commiserations to the previous.

  12. What a stupid rule.

  13. Alex McFarlane
    10th July 2016, 18:31

    So what does that mean for the standings, Hamilton just 1pt behind now?

      1. Alex McFarlane
        10th July 2016, 18:38

        Exciting for the championship. Level playing field half way through the season, I guess much will depend on Lewis limiting the damage when he has to take a new engine, unless Nico encounters engine problems of his own.

  14. No, you can’t factor in the 10s penalty, tell a driver something, then try and build a bigger gap. *Willful* infringement will, I’m sure, be treated much more harshly.

    1. You go ahead and tell me what’s intended rule infringement and what isn’t. Bit difficult, isn’t it?

    2. Why should it? A punishment has been set for support messages and the teams can work around that and evaluate if they can afford the 10 secs extra time to resolve an issue. The floodgate is now open so expect many more messages being given especially if they result in saving more than 10 secs. This will lead to a reversal of the rule for 2017 which I’m sure most people will welcome.

      1. Ravenouscartoon
        10th July 2016, 20:51

        For gods sake, the issue was not with the message about the setting, but the coaching afterwards (shift through 7th)

        1. The second and third messages were part of fixing the critical-from-Mercedes’-perspective issue, rather than coaching. It all goes back to the hazy nature of language, and why the radio rules were never enforceable in the first place. It’s perfectly possible to have a permitted and forbidden message in the same sentence – it’s just that Mercedes had incentive to make it obvious (in that they now know where the boundary is). This would also explain why the messaging was done in 3 stages, not just 1 – it allowed them to not only guarantee the 15 points (1 message would have been 18 highly risky points and Nico not getting the message necessitated the 3rd message) but also know at what point they need to stop open-airing and start coding in future.

    3. @falken This was wilful infringement, Merc didn’t accidently tell Nico what settings to change and how to drive around the issue.

      1. I think they did. They agreed with the FIA one thing to say, but in the heat of the moment the engineer answered Nico’s question.

        1. And cost his Driver 10 seconds.

          1. I think problem is more sinister than what is allowed and what is not…

            1) Problem rectified via setting changes : IT CANT POSSIBLY BE CRITICAL IF IT IS JUST A SETTING!
            2) Second message about 7th gear is 100% decoy, as he was driving 7th gear couple of times before and after the message relayed… Also i dunno how many people has seen it: Rosberg was instructed after the race off radio (whipered to his ear by race engineer) just before he went into the building to get checked and change room… I m speculating what kind of lies to say at press…
            Another problem with this is his pace didnt drop and kept gap to Max which doesnt sound like a critical gearbox! at all
            3) Now, what is there to stop anyone starting relaying CRITICAL MESSAGES like : tyre too hot, brakes are about to fail, engine critical change to ease the engine, ERS critical it may end the race, use strat 2-3, combine all sort of critical messages… and use your imagination…

          2. William Jones
            11th July 2016, 9:24

            @mysticus – Erm…

            well, in reverse order:

            3) The stewards, who between them could probably design and engineer a competitive race team have access to the raw data from the car, so they won’t get away with it.

            2) Pr is nothing new. We all know it’s lies, but it’s like a magicians trick – you know it’s not really magic, but you go along with it anyway.

            1) I agree.

    4. Well, I guess if someone has an issue that they are sure will shortly end the race for their car unless they tell the driver they will now feel secure enough to tell him @falken, @jerseyf1 (and the rest of you). That part of the conversation was not what was wrong with it.
      After that the engineer did get carried away and slipped back into the good old rithm of giving too much info about how to get around the issue (shifting through the gear …). And they were penalised for it. But i did not get the impression that they had somehow planned on doing that and willfully going too far.

      I agree with Falken that the FIA will probably look quite differently on any team/driver when there is NO such critical issue. And off course now that the line is drawn somewhat clearer by case law, it is well possible that any further incident will get a bigger penalty anyway, because they are forewarned.

      1. If anyone get any bigger penalty than what Rosberg got for all his wrong doing and helps, it will be the worst of F1, and it can be challenged at court by others for all the unfair treatment of other drivers… Because brakes are critical for finishing a race, tyres are critical for race, engine is critical for finishing a race, ERS also equally important…

        Why is it any different that a driver in wrong engine mode potentially could finish race but not in points and not finish at all… If one thing is not fair to tell driver to change his engine mode so he could loose a lot of places, it should be unfair to tell the driver settings to fix a problem that could end the race because driver doesnt know how to change the setting to get the car going….

        Since it is a setting that fixes the problem, it is driver’s duty to know as the controls are all given in a manual like how people nagged for another driver… People will say it is not the same, well how so? Ham could have lost a lot more positions if cars behind him were much closer… and imagine the scenario that he finishes the race but gets no point what is so different? it was a critical issue as he was loosing time unnecessarily…

        1. +1 where do you draw the line? The difference between your car stopping and your car being slow and dropping places can be practically zero for the driver and team but this stupid rule seems to say as long as you can keep the wheels going around you can’t tell them anything. Or maybe if you lose 50% of your performance? Where is the line?

          This rule had to be all out nothing otherwise it’s just open to inconsistency and ridicule.

          1. Exactly! Ros could have ended his race if he wasnt told the settings… So is Ham, could have lost all the places… and get no point… I said this before, it is almost like it is acceptable to kill someone slowly, but you are not allowed to shoot them in the head for a quick kill…

            What is the point of a car finishing the race but getting no points due to not getting the right settings… Driver is the one driving the car, they are not telling him how to go fast around the track, they would be telling him how to pace his car up as it wasnt running correctly…

            Ham got much harsher penalty at the end of a race… SPA anyone? 25 secs added to his time, despite doing nothing wrong as there was no rule stating you cant attack after giving up the position… heck Vettel drove a car off track, didnt give the position back, and got a slip on the wrist, where as ham got a penalty for a reason you can only use your imagination… the guy he overtook off track and gave position, crashed himself without ham’s help… 5 sec? no 10 sec no, 25 oh yeah, lets try harder to make someone else champ… and this season is almost 2008 all over…

            If Ham was told about a setting, it is guaranteed to get him grid penalty or more ridiculous time will be added to his time to demote him furthest possible!

          2. I wont be disappointed if it finishes like 2008 :) Ros jumping up n down 1 lap up front until he figures out Ham overtook someone in the straight by about 0.100 secs similar to how he lost in Monaco :) and Ham becomes WDC with 1 point ahead…

            I cant imagine the scenario :)

  15. Michal (@michal2009b)
    10th July 2016, 18:33

    Today’s race showed to where over-complicated regulations led – Rosberg’s and Vettel’s penalties. Now it can be more beneficiary to overtake someone off the track, pull away and stay in front with a 5s time penalty.

    1. Why in the world is Vettels punishment complicated? He missed the corner and pushes Massa off the track wwhile doing that. Of that is not worth a punishment nothing is.

      1. Michal (@michal2009b)
        10th July 2016, 19:20

        It is wrong that a driver can overtake someone off the track (or by forcing him off), pull away, get a 5s penalty and stay ahead. I don’t like these 5s/10s penalties, Baku with Raikkonen is another good example how ‘good’ it works.

        1. The time penalty given reflects the severity of the incident @michal2009b. We have seen it with other cars in the past where they did manage to build up a gap to compensate for the penalty. And we saw with Kimi in Baku that he did not.

          I think in this case it was pretty clear that Vettel did not intentionally push Massa off. But he still did push him off and nog gave back the spot. So he was given a bit of a tougher job for the rest of the race. It did give Kvyat the chance to “pass” him on time, but he just did not get close enough.

          1. Time penalty is not consistent… at least not with ham… SPA 2008, Ham overtook Rai, gave the position back, then attacked and overtook fair n square (there was no rule stating you cant attack until after the race), and Rai crashed all by himself without any help, and HAM was given 25 penalty!!! not 5 or 10 neither of which would demote him from 1st, but given 25 to demote him to 3rd!

        2. Penalties have to consistent, at least.

  16. So drivers are at the mercy of the engineer not needlessly passing on the wrong kind of instruction? Imagine it’s the final race, all to play for, and your engineer decides to tell you something you perhaps don’t really need to hear? Like ‘pass through 7th’?

    1. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
      10th July 2016, 19:00

      Excellent point:)

    2. Good point, but it’s kind of the same as a mechanic duffing a pitstop. They are also losing constructors points remember.

    3. Alex McFarlane
      10th July 2016, 19:33

      Perhaps that’s why, although Nico could have been disqualified in the worse case, he was ‘only’ given a 10 second penalty.

      It was probably the fault of the engineer for giving out info he shouldn’t have rather than Nico’s, but you can’t penalise the engineer so they have to give it to the driver.

    4. Ravenouscartoon
      10th July 2016, 20:52

      God, if this happens and costs a driver a title/race, the conspiracy theories will be unbearable!

      1. They are already…

      2. duncan idaho
        11th July 2016, 0:57

        It might have cost a WDC already.

    5. Yeah, well first of all it IS a team sport. And then, Rosberg did get the benefit of being given clearer instructions on how to cope with the issue so it’s not as if it had nothing to do with him. And as Alex writes, the penalty only dropped him back behind Verstappen but nothing more drastic, so that seems to be quite balanced.

    6. Rosberg specifically asked the question on how to drive the car.

      1. But then again so has Hamilton and the team have said “we can’t tell you i’m afraid”, but i get where you’re going he did ask the team and in the heat of the moment they may have forgot.

      2. Actually he asked for confirmation and included the answer to his own question, maybe force of the ‘coaching habit’ more than anything. Obviously it is up to the teams to ensure engineers answer something like ‘can’t answer that Nico’ – I think radio bans on coaching did become necessary – my point is that a championship being decided on a non-driving slip-up of this kind would be terrible.

      3. @patrickl Nico asked and answered his own question, not on how to drive the car, but how to deal with the 7th gear issue. He asks and answers his own question. The mistake was made by the team in affirming that Nico was right.

        1. @robbie, You keep repeating a falsehood in an attempt to make Rosberg look a little less like a fool. It’s not working.

  17. The FIA had to do something considering all their demands against coaching or aiding the driver via radio. Mercedes took a chance knowing that they could receive a penalty and likely weighed that against Nico not finishing at all if he got stuck in 7th gear and couldn’t get out of it.

    Is the penalty fair or too harsh? In this case it seems fair in that Nico and Mercedes lost some points as a result. However, if the distance had been more than 10 seconds to the following car then the penalty would be mostly meaningless, especially considering Rosberg and Mercedes would have lost points if he had not finished at all.

    If this is meant to be precedent setting by the FIA and results in no loss of place or points in a future race situation then the rule is without teeth if you are more than 10 seconds ahead of the nearest following car at the end off the race. I suppose the FIA/stewards may still have the discretion to impose a larger penalty as deemed fit. So, do the teams really know much more of what to expect in a similar situation or not? About all that has been really learned is that a penalty, not a warning, is to be expected for violating the radio transmissions rules.

    1. I think it really depends on the situation @bullmello.

      The penalty given was 1. enough to lose points, as you mention and 2. the main message – that he had an issue with 7th gear – was something they are allowed to talk about, but they went over the line by confirming/giving too much help in how to cope. 3. it was the first time the stewards did have to investigate such a message.

      I am pretty sure that the second point was important, and that the stewards saw it more as telling a bit too much in the spur of the moment rather than on purpose talking about somethign that was completely out of bounds. The third bit might have played a role, although the FIA does not tend to give warnings like that.

      I do hope they give more clarification at least to the teams in briefings before the next race, because this was the first time anyone got a clue on what scope of penalties we can expect for radio infringements.

  18. digitalrurouni
    10th July 2016, 18:36

    Ridiculous rule. Safety car starts are ridiculous. Not unhappy about the points gap cut down :)

      1. Barry White
        10th July 2016, 19:58

        Like Rosberg would have been any closer without the safety car start. He would probably be further back he’s bloody rubbish in the rain.

        1. digitalrurouni
          11th July 2016, 4:08

          Agreed. I want more rain races!

  19. Who was it that was going to eat 50 hamburgers in one sitting? Are you selling tickets? I want one.

    1. That was me! Lol. Anyway… I think Mercedes could have handled this differently… Like tell Nico that 7th gear was gone which would mean that Nico would have to skip shift 7th. I still find it hard to believe that this rule is here because it just seems unfair and dangerous. I do not have hamburgers with me right now though.. lol

      1. @krichelle You still haven’t answered his question. Are you selling tickets? XD

          1. No thanks lol. they probably ran out of stock

  20. So it’s ok to tell a driver how to fix his gearbox, but its not ok to tell a driver his brakes are about to fail and have him sail into a wall at over 100mph.

    OK, then.

    1. No it’s not ok…Nico got a penalty.

      1. Erm no.

        He didn’t get the penalty for being told how to fix his gearbox problem. He got the penalty for being told to avoid 7th gear after it was sorted. So, it is ok to tell a driver to fix a sensor issue with his gearbox, it is not ok to tell a driver hes about to lose his ability to break.

        Force India asked for permission to tell Perez about his brakes being critical, they where denied, moments later Perez braked for a corner, traveling at well over 100mph at the end of the back-straight when he stamped on the brakes, only to find he didn’t have anything to decelerate the car. Utterly stupid and incredibly irresponsible of the FIA.

        If nothing else, a driver should be warned about brake issues. They are the one thing you have in your control to help prevent a potentially fatal accident.

    2. I’m assuming Perez has a warning light on the dash informing him of overheating brakes. Hamilton explained that they have that, but of course in the heat of the battle drivers sometimes ignore warning lights.

      So the team probably wanted to tell Perez not to ignore that warning light and that would be coaching.

  21. Kind of unfair for nico to be handed a penalty, despite asking what to do (which hamilton has done in the past) the team replying “we can’t tell you” would suffice and because of his team’s error he pays the price. Really Mercedes should have been penalised. But as a neutral it’s a shame as it’s less points Hamilton has to make up because at this stage it looks as if Hamilton has the measure over Rosberg.

    1. His team’s error? you mean the error that made him finish the race instead of parking on the side of the track?

      1. The error i’m referring to is the message about 7th as that’s the message that resulted in a penalty, but when you put it like that for sure the team made the right decision in helping him

  22. Should penalize the team. Rosberg reported a problem team responded with too much information. Nico didn’t ask for help like Lewis did in the last race.

    1. Nico didnt ask for help?

      We have the JOKER OF THE DAY!

    2. “What does that mean? I have to shift through it.”

    3. On that basis, should Honda be punished instead of Button/Alonso if an engine goes bang?

  23. The precedent has been set. If this happens in the future the teams will probably think “well 10s is not that bad a penalty, so let’s just tell him how to fix the car and press on.”

    1. Horner has said that he now thinks that teams will intentionally break this rule for strategic reasons, as the magnitude of the penalty which was levied is not enough of a deterrent. http://www.motorsport.com/f1/news/horner-radio-rule-decision-could-set-bad-precedent-for-season-797607/?r=53295&em=1

      On another note, according to the Motorsport website, Mercedes have lodged an appeal against Rosberg’s penalty. http://www.motorsport.com/f1/news/mercedes-lodges-appeal-over-rosberg-penalty-797656/?r=53295&em=1

    2. yeah, well, good luck to any team now WANTING gearbox issues so that they can talk to their drivers @geemac. I think that is nonsense.

      I think it’s good that Mercedes are testing the rule because now at least we can get some “case law” that gives a clearer view of what is allowed (telling a driver about a serious car issue) and what is not (telling him how to cope with the issue), and at least we get a clue about the pool of penalties they are drawing on.

      1. They don’t need to have a gearbox issue, just fake a critical problem long enough to get the intended message across. Still not something a team would be likely to do every race (except if reliability is abysmal), but it is something usable to mitigate certain sub-optimal situations.

      2. Mercedes should not challenge the penalty….they may end up with losing 3rd place as well…..and lets be honest, no other team will want to risk giving their drivers radio instructions in the future if that is the outcome

  24. Well now we know the penalty for driving someone off track or giving settings advice. I would think that from now on teams will feel free to give advice and as others have said will factor in the 10 sec penalty for doing so. If only this ruling had been made before Baku then Hamilton could of achieved plenty more points. So effectively F1 have made the radio rule a very minor infringement. Force India will not be happy for one.

  25. Stupid rule, I can understand not coaching the drivers constantly but given the strict restrictions they have on power units etc they should be allowed to give warnings and advice to save regulated mechanical parts.

    I think he was lucky with the penalty though given the rulings.

  26. I’m surprised Mercedes gave that info considering how they didn’t tell Hamilton how to fix his engine mode

  27. The penalty system in F1 makes no sense to me, when the only thing that matters is final position, adding on time as a punishment is too variable to be a deterrent. If a driver commits a foul, the penalty should be X amount of time or X amount of places lost, whatever is least beneficial.

    1. That makes the punishment even more variable, albeit also more likely to feel meaningful. (And as someone who saw a governing body in another series disqualify a car that was already not classified, I can see why “more meaningful-feeling” would be attractive)!

  28. tgu (@thegrapeunwashed)
    10th July 2016, 18:47

    Much as I support the ban of driver coaching, the current rule is far too broad brush. The rule should prevent the team from giving advice on how to drive the car in normal conditions, but allow advice on how to fix problems.

    But as the rule stands I’m glad to see the stewards actually enforce it, Rosberg is usually treated far too leniently.

  29. Is it harsh? yes. Did he break the rules? well, yes!

    From what I understand, the instruction to avoid 7th was at fault and not the instruction to select that option on his steering wheel?

    1. Traverse (@hellotraverse)
      10th July 2016, 19:00

      So if instructing a driver to select a particular mode on the steering wheel is permitted, why didn’t they help Hamilton at Baku? Hmm…

      1. It is interesting watching the stewards tie ropes around themselves in every bid to find excuses to extricate Nico from punishments or limit whatever punishment he is meant to get.
        If the stewards deem it right to instruct someone to select a particular mode on the steering wheel, why then was it not allowed for Hamilton in Baku? They keep contradicting themselves..
        I doubt if they will run out of excuses any time soon.
        Watch out for those who will soon tell you that in Baku this was this while in Silverstone that was that. Point is both men were in trouble and needed help without which their race would be grossly affected.
        Difference is one got help, the other didn’t.

        1. Not to mention they deemed it illegal for Force India to inform Sergio Perez that his breaks were overheating except to tell him to park.

          1. Hamilton said that Mercedes have an indicator on the steering wheel which tells them the brakes are overheating. I would be very surprised if Force India doesn’t have this also.

            In reality it’s not that easy for a driver to actually act accordingly though. Just as Nico didn’t go slower to ease his brakes (if he ever actually had a brake issue) I doubt Perez would have either.

          2. Eh, let’s just ignore reality here Tata. FI themselves confirmed that they never even ASKED whether they could inform Perez (I think they mentioned that they thought it was manageable until it was already too late), so no one “deemed it illegal” at all.

            So with hindsight, maybe FI should have given Perez some warning (or as @patrickl mentions, maybe the driver WAs warned by a light on the dash already). But they didn’t.

        2. Duncan Snowden
          10th July 2016, 22:11

          The point is this Technical Directive 014-16. While it’s easy enough to get hold of the technical and sporting regulations from the FIA website, Directives are only sent out to the teams themselves (this was actually raised as an issue some years ago, on the basis that everyone involved should know what the rules that govern the sport are, but nothing seems to have been done about it).

          However, apparently, it permits, quite specifically, an instruction to switch to the default mode in, and only in, the event of a sensor failure. That’s what happened to Nico today, which is, presumably, why his race engineer didn’t even hesitate to give the instruction. It’s not what happened to Lewis in Baku.

          Without any official notification of these amendments-via-Directive, we, as fans, kind of have to take their word for it, but that seems to be the situation.

          1. But the problem was the coaching about the shift use.
            That’s why he got the penalty.

          2. Duncan Snowden
            11th July 2016, 4:12

            Replying to own comment here because I can’t answer sethje’s: I know, but Traverse and Tata were wondering why Lewis couldn’t be told what mode to use in Baku when, as you say, that wasn’t a problem yesterday. That’s why. It wasn’t the specific situation that seems to be permitted by this Directive.

  30. After initially thinking that a 10 second penalty for Rosberg was a fair outcome and a good precedent to set, that time penalty at the end of future races could mean very different outcomes to different teams and drivers.

    Has F1 ever considered deducting ‘x positions’ from the driver in a bid to stop teams from thinking it is worth breaking the rule? Would that be any fairer than issuing a fixed time penalty?

    Of course the best solution would be to just scrap unnecessary and convoluted rules.

    1. @sparkyamg – I suspect the stewards have better mechanisms for imposing a time penalty than changing finishing position (except an outright disqualification). Thus they applied the penalty to have a particular effect. Had Rosberg been 39s ahead of Verstappen, I suspect he would have had a 40s penalty. In no way does this set a 10s penalty precedent.
      I’m certainly with you on the scrapping of convoluted and unnecessary rules.

      1. ”Thus they applied the penalty to have a particular effect. Had Rosberg been 39s ahead of Verstappen, I suspect he would have had a 40s penalty.”

        If that is correct then why did stewards award a pointless 10s penalty to Rosberg in Austria for , in my opinion , a much more serious offense than a radio message ?

        1. @AMP33 you know what is really dumb:

          1) Push someone off track, 5 secs penalty if you are not a title challenger, and no penalty if you are title challenger and your name is not HAM or if you are in the same team with HAM (which means, you can take HAM out of race, or you can crash him and rest assure, you will get off lightly)…
          2) Crash someone : 10 sec penalty if you are in the same team eg Ros, or if you are not in the same team, drive through penalty which is 20+ secs usually (ham-mas, singapore crash). or grid drop in next race (hul-mas, singapore)!!!

          1. 3) Crash someone at pit exit: 10 pos grid penalty next race if your name is HAM
            4) If you cut a chicane and you give back the position, and no rule states you cant attack after giving position, and your name is HAM, you get 25 sec time penalty added to your finish!
            5) If you make a mistake into turn one (eg Fuji) at first lap, and drive someone off track, and your name is HAM, you get a drive through penalty, if your name is not HAM, no penalty…
            6) If you bump someone and your name is HAM, you get drive through (monaco) if you are in the same team with ham, than you go scoff free…

          2. duncan idaho
            11th July 2016, 7:59

            7) Debatable penalties from carting days that need restitution?
            8) 10 place grid drop still outstanding for inviting Bieber to the podium.

  31. Big question for me is, would Perez be given 10s Penalty if he was told about his brakes last week?

    1. Brakes normally fall under the safety exception, Rosberg has been warned about them a few times before.

  32. Stupid penalty for an utterly absurd rule.

  33. Personally, I believe that Hamilton will win the title by more than three points so this might not be a big deal. But that is not the point.

    Rules are rules and they have to be applied to everyone but I am not sure if these rules are right for F1. For sure, engineers should not tell the drivers when to start braking and what lines to use. I am glad that is not allowed anymore. However, the current cars are much more complicated than they have ever been. The best racer should win, not the one, who has learned most combinations of buttons on his steering wheel. So if a driver has a serious technical issue, then let the team help him handle it. Simplifying the cars is another option.

    Another side-effect of the new radio rules is that we hear much less radio messages, probably because there is nothing to talk about except for censored outbursts and silly discussions about why the team cannot tell the driver anything. If team radio is so bad, then let us just get rid of it completely.

    Perhaps teams and drivers will ultimately get used to the new rules and everything will be fine. But right now they do not make F1 look like the pinnacle of anything.

    1. I think you’re forgetting how many times Hamilton has been let down by the car and the team this year. Lewis is already far further along with the number of power units he has used, and cannot afford more technical problems when compared to his teammate. Lewis will be penalized although none of these problems are his fault, and will start incurring grid penalties.

      Lewis could win every pole position, but if that car isn’t reliable for him going forward, Rosberg will be handed a gift, as he has been handed many times this season already.

    2. Hm, if you look at radio messages we get played though @girts, it is pretty clear that it’s more about FOM not playing them than it is about how many messages actually are exchanged anyhow.

      FOM started to cut down on playing them quite a while before the ban was put in the rules. And just look at how little of the messages at Ferrari traditionally get played (its a bit more with Vettel cursing now than it was with Alonso cursing a few years back though) compared to McLaren messages.

      I myself was perfectly fine and enjoyed hearing them discuss strategy etc. I was a bit unimpressed with hearing Smedley Co drive Massa though. And Rosberg seemed to request as much info as he could get (Hamilton only sometimes did that, for example when Rosberg was beating him).

      Still, it’s rather Bernie deciding what gets played than how much the teams actually communicate. And its a shame we don’t hear more of it.

      1. William Jones
        11th July 2016, 9:31

        Indeed, using the app, and subscription to F1 Access, you get more messages than are boradcast. More money grubbing from FOM.

  34. Rosberg has got of likely imo, if it wasn’t for the advise he was given it’s likely he wouldn’t have figured out the problem himself and would have ended up finishing in a much lower position.

    1. I disagree. He asked and answered his own question before the team affirmed it. Had they just said ‘no comment’ then obviously Nico would have done what he himself already stated as the answer. Don’t dwell in 7th gear. I don’t see where you can figure Nico wouldn’t have figured it out for himself, when we actually got to hear him say what the correct thing to do was.

  35. Team of British only stewards judging the only German challenger to darling Hamilton. What else did anyone expect ? Revenge in a few weeks time I guess.

    1. William Jones
      11th July 2016, 9:34

      That’s the first time I’ve heard Dr Gerd Ennser, Roger Peart and Emanuele Pirro described as British.

  36. I have a dream. A dream where the official result and time differences of an F1 race are the same as the finishing order and time differences of the actual finishing order seen on TV/at the track…

    I hate time penalties. They just ruin what happens on track. Why not give them substantial amount of penalty points instead of time penalties? Only drive-thru’ and StopNGo should remain for mayor infrigements.
    They could write exact rules, exact number of penalty points for various infringements, eg:
    3 points: Speeding in the pits, ignoring blue flags, track limits(for 2-4 times), gaining an advantage, forcing driver off track, unsafe release
    5 points: false start, causing a collision, etc, etc…

    Rosberg would be on 6-10 points just counting the last 2 races… and 12 results in a race ban…

    1. @f1mre Uhh, your dream is already a reality. The results displayed on your TV screen is already with time penalties added, EXCEPT for those that investigated after the race. Investigation after the race is unavoidable because accidents can happen in final laps like in Austria, or it will need quite some time for discussion like this incident, or the need to summon the driver or team representation to the stewards. While it sucks to have podium ceremony with wrong drivers, please remember they have obligation for TV schedule, “important people” / politicians who presented the trophies, and fans who coming to the track to conduct the podium ceremony at reasonable time after the race ends.

    2. Point penalties are automatically added whenever a time penalty is. So Rosberg now has two penalty points in addition to his time penalty. If he gets enough additional penalty points this season, he’ll be forced to miss a race (notwithstanding any penalty Toto Wolff may wish to impose on him should colliding with Lewis Hamilton be among the future offences).

  37. The team, not just the driver, should had been punished. Take 5 constructor points away from Mercedes-Benz/AMG. Nico wasn’t the only guilty party in play here but the brain trust inside the garage. If the FIA dictates that a “driver must drive the car alone without aid”, then it’s time to re-think and re-consider the present state of F1 cars completely. It’s a dumb rule but remains a rule. Dock offending teams something valuable like constructor points and they will comply.

  38. I cant help thinking that Mercedes came out of this smelling like roses, intentionally breaking the rules, but gambling it would pay off, which it did; which again says a lot about how serious and detrimental the gear box problem had been. Very well played Mercedes. You’ve earned 15 more points and lost nothing!

    1. Alex McFarlane
      10th July 2016, 19:50

      If the gearbox was seriously damaged, and requires changing for the next race, perhaps that was factored into the final decision as Rosberg will take a 5-place penalty in Hungary.

  39. If Force India weren’t allowed to tell about the brake problem in Austria, I don’t get why Mercedes were even allowed to tell Rosberg what mode to put the car in. But telling him to shift through 7 is quite clearly a breach.

    I think it’s a silly rule though. Yes, driver coaching as we saw in particular between Massa and Smedley in the past is aweful, but if there is a problem with the car they should be allowed to tell them. At least think about the “joker” suggestion from Herbert.

  40. If I understood it right, he was punished because of “You have to shift through it” part.

  41. Well, good rulling, I would have done the same.

    10s is about time he would have lost, without them telling him to jump over 7th gear.

    And that was the real breach of regulations.

    And its also a good precedent. When teams decide now to tell their driver something well worth it.

    Perez would have loved a similar message in Austria and it would have been well worth 10s penalty.

    1. Oh and let me add a question 10s penalty is worst time penalty they can give right?

      1. No, they can pick whatever time penalty they deem fits. That’s Article 38.3 e.

        Regular time penalty is 30 second maximum though. That’s the replacement time penalty for a 10 second stop and go penalty which wasn’t served during the race.

  42. The penalty is about right, but the rule is plain stupid.

  43. Again Nico shows his lack of intelligence.

    1. In what way? He asked and answered his own question correctly, as indicated by the team making the mistake of affirming that. So clue me in…where does Nico lack intelligence?

  44. Is there ANYONE who can still sincerely say they don’t believe MB favors Nico over Lewis?

  45. Whilst I fully support getting rid of coaching, given teams can carry out physical work on the cars in their pitbox, why not allow some more technical messages if the car is in the pits? The driver/team gets penalised with the time lost in the pits, but the cars keep going. The FIA could even mandate a 10 second minimum stop time for technical dialogue, or longer if they see fit.

    Views on the above please?

  46. Every time these rules crop up they seem to be to dumber and dumber effect and they’ve finally interfered with a result after the race. I’m not a fan of Rosberg, and I wish I could enjoy Verstappen take another 2nd place, but this was nonsense and not sport.

  47. Aaaand they are going to switch engineers next race!

    I won’t be surpised if Toto did this because Nico’s engineer slipped up today.

  48. We all forget that Rosberg constantly asking how and where his team mate was goign quicker than him led to this rue in the first place.

    Rosberg back in 2014 was way off Hamiltons pace and kept on asking his engineer where hamilton was faster and what lines he was taking. Then suddenly Rosberg would find half a second or more.

    I’m sure there were others doing this too but i don;t recall any examples of anyone else doing it.

    Mercedes would do well to let Rosbergs contract expire and not resign him, he is simply not that good and has has cost that team a lot of points.

    They could pretty much put anyone they wanted in that car next year, drivers would be canceling contracts and lining up for a season in a merc.

    1. @sodomy You don’t recall examples of anyone else doing it, because FOM chooses what radio comm we get to hear, so they can create drama and a storyline. All teams and drivers do it, and if the coaching isn’t going on literally in real time then they are still, and always will be, pouring over each other’s data and pushing each other to progress back in the garages and briefing rooms. Maybe consider reality before making silly comments about replacing Nico or him not being that good.

  49. For the life of me I can’t figure out why I watch this pathetic excuse of a sport. I must be sadistic. Pinnacle of motor racing my ass!

  50. FreddyVictor
    10th July 2016, 23:02

    these daft rules need to be ‘improved’
    many wrong comments: eg @patrickl writes: ‘Yes, so he was asking how to shift gears. Which is not allowed.’
    actually, yes he can ask, but may not get a reply
    according to http://www.f1fanatic.co.uk/2016/03/18/fia-reveals-details-new-driver-radio-ban/
    20. Driving breaches by team driver or competitor, e.g. missing chicanes, running off track, time penalty will be applied etc.
    so RB telling VES about ROS potential penaltycould be deemed to violate this rule
    so maybe ROS + VES should both have got penalties ?

  51. If the rule is that the teams can tell drives whats happening, but cant tell them what to do about it, and its consistently applied, whats the problem? If the cars are too complicated, who’s fault is that? Either make them simpler or trust in what are meant to be the best drivers in the world.

    If it were me, I’d ban the radios entirely and let allow any information the teams like on a pit board. Maybe one way radio, river to team, but team to driver via pit board. :)

  52. “For sure you can say yes or no !”
    Nahh… Cars that cannot be operated by the driver alone, conceived and built in the service of “technical innovation”, ARE the problem. It’s not racing.

    1. i.e., I wonder how much radio help Nuvolari or even Gilles needed to drive the car.

      1. That’s not the good question. The good question being: if it were available at the time, would they use it back then?
        Radio transmission was not usable for F1 for years. When it was first introduced, it was used only in the pits by plugging a jack to the car. Then the tech improved and we ended up with two way wireless transmissions.

  53. Now a penalty has been handed out, it will be interesting to see whether any consistency will follow.

    My suspicion is that if a team like Renault or Sauber had done this, the penalty would be disqualification, Merc, Ferrari, RBR probably 10 sec but more likely 5.

    Yet another “rule” like track limits that will be open to interpretation and application.

  54. I think the penalty was utter rubbish, these modern day f1 cars a really really technical. I agree that driver coaching should be banned but they should free up the rules on telling the driver the problem with the car and letting him know how to fix it!

  55. Since we’ve already seen a situation where a car had failing brakes and the team wasn’t legally allowed to warn the driver, this isn’t conjecture; …

    What happens, and who is civilly (or criminally) liable, if a car crashes and track workers or spectators are injured, or worse, and the crash was a direct result of a brake or tire failure that the team knew about, but the driver didn’t, due to the communication rules?

    While this might sound like a severe overreaction, I think we must consider the possible consequences when rules are in place that cause potentially dangerous second-guessing by team members who aren’t 100% certain what is legal to say and what isn’t, especially where potential safety issues are concerned.

    This type of problem has occurred before, when the cultural pecking-order and class system on a commercial airliner caused flight crew members to defer to the captain/pilot after he had made a wrong and fatal decision, which the rest of the crew were afraid to point-out. While the Formula one situation is nowhere near that convoluted, it does show how serious the consequences of enforced indecision can be.

    1. That last paragraph is a bit of an alarmist straw man.

      The correct course of action for a team faced with such a critical possibility would be to retire the car, or at least bring it in to the pits.

      There’s nothing extraordinary about an F1 car developing a fault. The teams need to acknowledge the change in regulations, and they need to develop a suitable response which takes this into account, within the rules, applied to all. If they don’t they face a penalty.

  56. Once (If ever ?) the technicalities are agreed on what messages are permitted, how about the teams being given a box with various authorised pre-recorded messages. Plug it into their radio system and say scenario A occurs, they select their driver and press button 22 which plays ‘your brake temps are high’ or ‘one of your gears is broken’ etc as examples. That means all teams have a limited agreed set of safety-related info they can relay to their drivers above and beyond the normal chatter about tyres etc. (Yes I know the scottish version will need to have ‘She canna take no more cap’n, she’s gonna blow !!!”).
    Another option is if a team relays a message that F1 deem is not allowed, then the penalty gets applied to both team cars – as the team designed the parts, built the component etc they can share the pain. They may think twice before getting on the radio.

  57. Seems very similar to me. In Baku, Hamilton had a broken engine mode and the team refused to tell him what was broken. In Silverstone, Rosberg had a broken gear and the team told him which gear was broken and how to work around it.

    Agree it’s a silly rule though, they need to find a way to word the rule so that drivers can be told when a part of the car is broken without that being used to coach them.

    1. This is the 3rd time you are writing the same thing and whining for your favorite puppy.
      In Baku Hamilton had wrong engine mode, thus not optimal, which wouldn’t give him 100% of the power but 98%. NOT A BROKEN ENGINE MODE. Was up to the driver to find it by himself. At one point Rosberg had the same issue and solved it. The cars were not in critical condition. They were just a tad below their standards.
      In this case, there was a critical gearbox condition. And the team decided to take their chances.

      Is there something that you do not understand now?
      Or your blind fanatism will make you insist again again on posting for 68th time the same comment over and over again?

  58. I dont like Nico, and I dont even think this is fair. Lets not argue about the first part of the message which is legal. Nico just wanted to reassure that he can SKIP through the gear, that is going from 6 double shift to 8. The Message was to AVOID 7th Gear. ok. There are 2 ways to avoid it. A. Do not up shift after 6th Gear. B. Jump (skip) 7th Gear.
    Nico needs to clarify that he is allow to go to option B, as A will cost him a lot of time.
    So for option B, in theory skipping gear by double shifting it doesnt mean avoiding the gear. Double shifting it just means that, reduce the time the 7th gear is engaged to the minimum like say under 0.2 of a second. Thats not really Jumping a gear. So Nico has to be sure that he can “SKIP” through the gear this way. Now this is not assisting the driver, this isn’t driver coaching. This is to give a solution to the driver to avoid a imminent technical fault of the car that he was facing at the moment.
    I am sorry, I have to disagree with the steward on this .

  59. Thats why in the real world which we all live in, we have Judges. Judges are there to look at the spirit of the law, the purpose of the particular legislation. In order to make the right judgement, you have to understand why you have the particular rule in the first place.

    To rule is in place to avoid engineer from coaching bad driver and making them better or almost as good as a good driver. Telling them things like where they lost the speed, acceleration, the line of corners, which gear they should use in which part of the track etc… It’s unfair, and it isn’t what audiences like to watch. Banning it is correct. However, in yesterday’s situation, I dont like it was any of that. It was simply a damage control, engineer wasn’t teaching nico how to drive the car, they were giving him instructions to avoid further damage to the car. It didnt make the car go faster, it didnt help him from getting overtaken. It’s just a clarification of how he needs to avoid the damage to his gear box! Not that if he skipped a gear would make the car go faster. If you accept the first part of the communication, you should might as well accept the 2nd part. Default 0,1 could mean skip natural gear and shift through gear 1. If you accept they say Default 0,1 why dont they accept skip through gear 7?
    Like messages like Nico, Hamilton is doing 35.46 could mean hamilton is using gear 3 for turn 5 and gear 4 for turn 6….. You cant really police it…… All you can do ist just to stop engineer from giving clear coaching instructions, and anything else should be allowed. Otherwise you are just making uneven playing field.

  60. It’s a good rule but badly implemented. The driver should run the car unaided.
    What should have happened.

    a) Team says nothing and let driver figure it out.
    – Driver will destroy gearbox (and more) result retirement
    – Driver figures it out result maybe some time lost
    b) Team tell’s driver what to do to save car from failure and retire the car.

    The driver should drive the car unaided. Telling how to repair the car (first part of the message) and how continue to drive (second part of the message) is not unaided. A disqualification is the only correct penalty in this case.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

All comments are moderated. See the Comment Policy and FAQ for more.