As the dust settled on Sunday's Spanish Grand-Prix you could be forgiven for thinking Racing Point F1 had a lot to feel good about with the team recording their best points of the campaign. However, as can often be the case in sport, in play success has been marred by regulatory trouble.
That trouble culminated on 7 August with the FIA’s (Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile) decision that Racing Point had illegally copied the car design of last year’s championship-winning Mercedes. The Silverstone based outfit were issued with a €400,000 fine and a 15 penalty point deduction.
F1's 2020 constructor scandal has been a strange tale that can seem simple on the surface. But look under the bonnet of the FIA's decision and you'll find there's far more at play. The issues raised have outraged competitors and forced the FIA to grapple with technical and philosophical questions on the spirit of competition and the sport’s future - which is partly why we aren't at the end of the story quite yet, with appeals lodged by Racing Point, Ferrari and Renault.
Nonetheless, it’s worth taking a step back at this juncture to see what lessons can be learnt on how to deal with sports’ governing bodies and regulatory changes and my latest article does just that. For the full analysis of the FIA decision and why it demonstrates the importance of closely evaluating sporting regulatory changes click here. The article also digs into the story's background and relevant regulations - so if this is all new to you then its not a bad place to start.
If you haven't got time right now for a deep dive don't worry. Below are the headline learning points discussed in the article, so you can wet your rushed appetite before tucking into the detail later.
FIA's decision - What can we learn?
A. Keep an open dialogue, seeking clarity when necessary
B. Consider how regulations will be interpreted
C. Check scope and effective dates
D. Establish your sport’s good practice and follow it
E. Identify mitigating factors
F. Plan ahead for appeals
G. Be mindful of other potential issues/claims