FIA stewards excluded the Williams-BMW and Toyota drivers from the results of the Canadian Grand Prix after it was found that the brake ducts fitted to the teams' cars were illegal.

FIA stewards excluded the Williams-BMW and Toyota drivers from the results of the Canadian Grand Prix after it was found that the brake ducts fitted to the teams' cars were illegal.


The Williams-BMW team insisted that the brake ducts on the cars of Ralf Schumacher and Juan-Pablo Montoya had been fitted in error and not in an attempt to gain an unfair advantage.


Ralf was disqualified from his first podium finish in almost a year, while Montoya was similarly stripped of fifth place. WilliamsF1 technical director Sam Michael said the team would not appeal against the stewards' decision. The Toyotas of eight-placed Cristiano da Matta and tenth-placed Olivier Panis were also excluded from the results, but the team did not lodge an appeal within the time limit set by the FIA.


"The front brake ducts of Ralf and Juan Pablo's cars are not in accordance with the regulations," Michael said. "It was a mistake and it was unintentional."


The FIA scrutineering panel said that the all-important brake ducts did not comply with the dimensional requirements laid out in the regulations.


"There was no performance gain, and no gain for brake cooling because the inlet area was not bigger," Michael clarified, "However, the ducts are not in compliance with the technical regulations. Therefore we accept the FIA's decision."


Ralf was bitterly disappointed to have seen a breakthrough result negated by something outside of his control.


"Breaking the rules is breaking the rules and this is what matters," the German said, "I have to accept it even if it is obviously very difficult. It's small comfort that (team boss) Frank Williams called me afterwards to tell me he's sorry."


Toyota technical director Mike Gascoyne said: "The front brake ducts on our cars were found to be illegal after today's Canadian Grand Prix. We presented a case to the Stewards of the Meeting, attributing the cause to a stack-up of manufacturing tolerances, stating that even with this, the brake ducts were still within a generally accepted tolerance level.


”The Stewards of the Meeting decided not to accept this case and whilst we are disappointed to lose our eighth and tenth places, we have to accept their decision. It is Toyota's policy to always run cars that conform to all regulations. This is simply a regrettable and unforeseen issue that led to no competitive advantage."


John Howett, the president of the Toyota F1 team, said: "We intended to appeal against the disqualification but we were unable to meet the FIA appeal deadline. I must stress that the alleged technical infringement resulted in absolutely no increase in our performance level during today's race. The brake ducts on our cars were still within a generally accepted tolerance level."

Original article from Car