Toto Wolff accuses rivals of ‘tricks’ as Ferrari and Red Bull set for massive setback amid cheating allegations

The regulations are set to change at the Belgian Grand Prix after the summer break.

New information has surfaced as to the skids on the floors of some of the cars amid the “porpoising” and bouncing technical directive debate.

Mercedes’ drivers, Sir Lewis Hamilton and George Russell, have been struggling both physically and in terms of performance due to the aerodynamic phenomenon that comes with the new ground effect aerodynamics, but Red Bull and Ferrari have been less hindered by it.

As it turned out, there was a part of the wooden plank on the floor of the car that is not covered by regulation, and the leading two teams are thought to have used this to deflect the plank more than the permitted 2mm.

This is not strictly illegal, because the rules do not specifically prohibit that, but it will be banned as of the Belgian Grand Prix after the summer break.

READ: Toto Wolff unhappy after Lewis Hamilton’s battle with Mick Schumacher and Kevin Magnussen

However, a deflecting floor is not the only piece of design genius at play; some teams have essentially been using an invisible skid block to help manage their oscillation.

There is a skid block on some of the cars that emerges from one of the holes, and it is separate from the other section of the skid block at the front of the plank.

This section emerges from the measuring hole, where the scrutineers gauge how much the plank has worn down, and protects the car as it hits the track surface.

The rearward section of the skid block then vanishes back into the rest of the plank, so it does not get worn out the rest of the time.

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This way, the drivers are able to maintain a consistent pace without the wearing down of the plank becoming excessive.

Once more, the regulations do not cover this, so it is not illegal right now, and it is a remarkably clever piece of engineering.

However, Mercedes boss Toto Wolff disagrees with that, and he believes that what is essentially a moving skid block is outside of the regulations.

“As a matter of fact, some teams have skids that actually disappear when the car hits the bottom,” said the Austrian.

“The reason for skids is that they are the limitation of how much plank wear you can have, and if a skid can disappear miraculously into the floor, that is clearly against the regulations.

“Then the second thing is a plank that can deflect or that basically also moves away more than the tolerance should be, the tolerance is one millimetre. 

“And if a plank moves away many more millimetres up into the car obviously, you gain some performance there too.

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“I think the first one is going to disappear for Spa…because apparently skid material is not available [in the meantime], and the second one is going to be clarified in next year’s regulations.”

As for whether his team have been using any tricks to improve the performance of their car, Red Bull team principal Christian Horner is adamant that this is not the case.

“That’s total rubbish, total rubbish, I think we’re getting issues mixed up here,” he told Sky Sports.

“Maybe he’s referring to, I don’t know, cars that are around him at the moment. I have no idea, but I have absolutely no issues or concerns on our floor.”

Charles Leclerc won last weekend’s Austrian Grand Prix for Ferrari, ahead of Red Bull’s Max Verstappen and Mercedes’ Sir Lewis Hamilton.