Nine Formula 1 teams have released similar statements on defence of F1 Academy managing director Susie Wolff, after she was accused of giving “confidential” information to her husband, Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff.
The FIA released a statement on Tuesday that they were aware of allegations that Susie had given information to her husband, without naming them specifically in their statement, and that an investigation would take place.
Incredibly, the governing body’s statement has been made following a single report by Business F1 Magazine and media speculation, rather than evidence.
In the report, it explains how several team principals complained to the FIA about the Mercedes boss receiving info from his wife, something every team has since categorically denied.
Following strong statements by F1, Mercedes and Susie rejecting the allegations, the remaining nine teams on the grid all released similar statements defending the F1 Academy managing director.
“We can confirm that we have not made any complaint to the FIA regarding the allegation of information of a confidential nature being passed between an F1 team principal and a member of FOM staff,” the nine teams said in separate but identically worded statements.
“We are pleased and proud to support F1 Academy and its managing director through our commitment to sponsor an entrant in our liveries from next season.”
It’s incredibly rare for all of the teams to come together on a matter, with it now leaving the FIA red in the face.
F1 and Mercedes have accused the governing body of not telling them about their statement and that they only found out via social media.
The biggest question being asked is why did the FIA release such an impactful statement based purely on one report, something which will only result in further tensions between F1 and the governing body.
In her statement, Susie accused the FIA of questioning her “integrity”, although she noted that she was “unsurprised”.
With all the teams having backed Susie, the FIA will almost certainly have to explain why they released their statement, given that every team has denied speaking to them about information being passed.
It is seemingly yet another complete breakdown in communication between the governing body and the teams, at a time when there are fresh talks of the pinnacle of motorsport potentially breaking away from the FIA.