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2015 F1

FIA to reconsider Honda ‘freeze’ ruling

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The FIA could be set to rethink its decision to leave Honda outside of the new engine development ‘unfreeze’.

A loophole in the existing rules will allow 2014 suppliers Ferrari, Renault and Mercedes to develop their turbo V6s within the season this year.

But because McLaren’s 2015 works partner Honda is a newcomer, the FIA’s Charlie Whiting ruled that it will have its power unit homologated or ‘frozen’ on 28 February, just as the 2014 manufacturers did almost a year ago.

McLaren told us this week that, in response to the ruling, the British team has been in contact with the governing body.

And the Spanish sports newspaper Marca quotes a Honda spokesman as saying the Japanese manufacturer is “angry and sad” about the situation, “but we do not want to comment further”.

It is believed further meetings will be held in the coming days, but the sport’s 2015 engine suppliers already got together this week in Geneva, to discuss Bernie Ecclestone’s desire for a different engine formula for 2016.

According to Italy’s Autosprint, however, Honda also raised the ‘unfreeze’ issue at the meeting.

Correspondent Roberto Chinchero revealed: “Honda has been heard.

“At the meeting in Geneva … the FIA decided to reconsider its position with regards to Honda.

“Taking note of their (Honda’s) concerns, the question remains open and will probably be defined at a later meeting between the manufacturers that has been set in two weeks time.”

Chinchero continued: “There are also rumours of a ‘plan B’ for the Japanese.

“If the FIA keeps its current position, McLaren could protest against each technical update that is brought to the track by the other manufacturers, invoking the technical regulation prohibiting multiple homologations of the power unit,” he added. (GMM)

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