FIA amend communication procedures after Ferrari query 01 Oct 2007
The FIA is to back up emails to teams with written communications after Ferrari started the Japanese Grand Prix on the wrong tyres, having not received the relevant notification in time.
Both Kimi Raikkonen and Felipe Massa took the start on standard wet tyres, despite a directive ordering all teams to use extreme wets. Ferrari said they only received the email after the start, forcing both drivers to make costly unscheduled pit stops.
After Ferrari subsequently queried the procedure, the FIA - who did not penalise the team for starting on the wrong tyres - issued the following statement:
A communication from the Stewards requiring all competitors to fit extreme wet-weather tyres for safety reasons was sent to all teams by email at 12:35 hrs local time today. Save for Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro, all competitors have confirmed that they received the email at 12:37 hrs.
It is understood that Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro did not receive the email at the same time as other competitors. As a result, Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro was the only team which did not start on extreme wet-weather tyres.
The 2007 Formula One Sporting Regulations (Art. 15.1) state that in exceptional circumstances Stewards or Race Director may give instructions to Competitors by means of special circulars in accordance with the Code and these circulars will be distributed to all competitors who must acknowledge receipt.
At a meeting of the Formula One Sporting Working Group held in Monaco on 7th December 2006, all teams agreed to an electronic distribution system to ensure that all competitors received communications simultaneously, with no time advantage for a team by virtue of their location in the pit lane. This system has been used throughout the current championship year.
To avoid any recurrence of today's problem the agreed method of using electronic communications will continue to be used but in future will be backed up by the traditional method of written communication.