Hamilton and Russell to face disqualification from Canadian GP

Mercedes have been greatly affected by "porpoising" and bouncing this season.

The FIA have brought in a new directive at this weekend’s Canadian Grand Prix to ensure that the cars are as stable as possible in a bid to look out for driver welfare.

Mercedes’ George Russell and Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz have been outspoken about the long-term health affects “porpoising’ and bouncing can have on drivers, and the Silver Arrows have been losing around a second per lap down the straights as well.

Both Russell and Sir Lewis Hamilton were left feeling bruised after their backs took a beating last weekend in Baku because of bottoming, to the FIA have taken action to protect the drivers.

READ: Russell insists the FIA aren’t trying to help Mercedes

To limit the movement, the governing body have introduced an aerodynamic oscillation metric (AOM) which will be measured for all of the teams during Friday practice.

This will be used to calculate a threshold for oscillating movement by final practice on Saturday and, if any of the teams go over that, they could be banned from the event.

They can also be asked to raise the ride height of the car by a minimum of 10 millimetres to ensure that the floor is not hitting the ground too hard.

This will provide an intriguing prospect, because it could well be that Ferrari, who themselves have had to deal with the phenomenon this year, are forced to raise their ride height, which would put them into the clutches of Mercedes behind.

Because this directive has been brought in at such short notice, there will be some exceptions.

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For example, while there is currently only one floor stay allowed on either side of the cars, there will now be two, but the view in the long run is to get the teams to design a car that is safe for the drivers to race in.

Article 10.2 of the FIA International Sporting Code [ISC] dictates that the stewards can disqualify a team at their discretion if they feel that the car is unsafe.

Russell sees this change as a good step forward for the sport.

“I think this is something that everybody thinks Mercedes were sort of pushing for,” he told Sky Sports.

“But from a pure performance side of things, we don’t really want change because if there’s change, you never know if it’s going to go in our favour or against you.

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“I think it’s something that we as drivers have spoken about globally because we want change moving forward because what we went through last weekend just wasn’t sustainable.

“It doesn’t matter what boat you’re in, you’re either ‘porpoising’ and you’re hitting the ground, or you have no ‘porpoising’ so you’re running the car very close to the ground and you’re bottoming.

“So, either way you look at it, it’s not great.

“I think it’s promising to see that they’ve made action on this straight away and it’s not taken them weeks and months and political decisions to change something like this.

“And when it comes to safety, things need to be resolved ASAP so not surprised to see it come in so quick but I think it’s good for everyone.”

Russell managed to get a third-placed finish out of the misbehaving Mercedes last weekend in Baku to secure his third podium of the year as Hamilton came home fourth.