Daniel Ricciardo has been excluded from the result of the Australian Grand Prix after an investigation by the race stewards found his car to have fuel-flow irregularities.
The Australian finished his home race in second on Sunday, coming home behind the dominant Nico Rosberg, marking his first visit to the podium in Formula One, and all on his Red Bull debut, having qualified on the front row on Saturday.
However, following the end of the race the FIA stewards in Melbourne opened an investigation into the result, after it was found that the RB10 of Ricciardo had exceeded the fuel flow limit of 100kg/h, and consequently was in breach of article 3.2 of the sporting regulations, as well as article 5.4 of the new 2014 technical regulations.
Controversy has surrounded the fuel flow sensor, which is homologated by the FIA, and operated by the team, and acts as the primary measure of fuel flow, with Red Bull having changed their sensor, which they claim was faulty on two occasions throughout the weekend, first on Friday evening, and then again on Saturday.
The dispute is that Red Bull, having been asked to use their first sensor with an off-set, to ensure legality, instead opted to use their internal fuel flow model, rather than the FIA homologated sensor provided.
During the race the FIA observed that the fuel flow on Ricciardo’s Red Bull was too high, and instructed the team to lower this rate in observance with the limit set out by the regulations, however, Red Bull chose not to comply.
As such the FIA found the #3 car of Ricciardo to not be in compliance with the 2014 technical regulations, and as a result the Australian has been excluded.
Red Bull mean to appeal against the stewards decision.
“Inconsistencies with the FIA fuel flow meter have been prevalent all weekend up and down the pitlane,” reads a statement released by Red Bull early on Monday morning in Australia.
“The team and Renault are confident the fuel supplied to the engine is in full compliance with the regulations.”
Ricciardo’s exclusion means that Kevin Magnussen is promoted to second, with Jenson Button moving into the third and the final podium spot, with both of the McLaren’s now on the rostrum.
Fernando Alonso is now fourth, with Valtteri Bottas fifth for Williams, and Nico Hulkenberg sixth on his first race since returning to Force India.
Kimi Raikkonen will be seventh, ahead of the two Toro Rosso’s of Jean-Eric Vergne and rookie Daniil Kvyat, while Sergio Perez moves up into the final points paying position.
Image courtesy of Red Bull Media/Getty ImagesF1