Marko offers clue about Red Bull cool fuel issue

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 Credit: PA Images
Credit: PA Images

Helmut Marko has offered a hint about the fuel temperature issue that had Red Bull in a race against time before the Spanish Grand Prix.

Eventual winner Max Verstappen and runner-up Sergio Perez were reported to be only eight seconds away from having to start in the pit lane because the fuel in their RB18 cars was not at the right temperature.

Teams are understood to try to keep the fuel temperature cooler than the stipulated minimum level for as long as possible before a race to aid performance. Then they increase the temperature at the necessary time to comply with the regulations.

Aston Martin were reported to have got this practice wrong at the preceding Miami Grand Prix, with both of their cars having to start from the pit lane as a result – and Red Bull were nearly caught out at Barcelona.

Red Bull advisor Marko told F1-Insider: “We had overlooked the fact the temperature had been changed. But we noticed it in time and ran the engine to warm up the fuel.”

When he had been asked about the late arrival of the cars during an interview on the grid with Sky Germany, without mentioning the fuel Marko said: “The high temperatures today required some last-minute adjustments.”

Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez follow each other. Spain May 2022. Credit: PA Images
Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez follow each other. Spain May 2022. Credit: PA Images

F1-Insider report the rule was tweaked for the Spanish Grand Prix to state the fuel temperature must be a maximum of 10 degrees cooler than the ambient temperature two hours before the start of the race, i.e. on Sunday, 35 degrees minus 10 and therefore 25 degrees.

However, the report claims that since the switch to E10 fuel this season, the rule had been, up to and including the Miami Grand Prix, a standard minimum temperature of 18 degrees – and that Red Bull had only realised the change at Barcelona in the nick of time.

Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto had already expressed his opinion about what had happened as he urged the FIA to keep tabs on what was happening in this area, given the Scuderia are in a World Championship fight against Red Bull.

“I don’t know what was going on there, of course,” said Binotto. “But I can imagine it had something to do with the petrol temperatures in the tank, which have to be a maximum of 10 degrees below the ambient temperature.

“It should be at all times during the event, so not only when the car is going out but when the car is in the garage itself.

“It’s difficult to understand that they were maybe heating up the fuel through a fire-up because it would not explain… as I said, it should be [legal] at all times.

“I can only trust the FIA.”

 

Red Bull had told PlanetF1 after the race that “we had no fuel issue and fully complied with all regulations”.

 

 

The article Marko offers clue about Red Bull cool fuel issue appeared first on Planetf1.com.

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