It was announced late last night that the Williams team will appeal Felipe Massa’s exclusion from the Brazilian GP as independent temperature readings had his tyres within the Pirelli limits.
Hours after Sunday’s race at the Interlagos circuit, where Massa brought his FW37 home in eighth place, he was excluded from the race result.
According to the FIA, his right rear tyre too hot at the start of the grand prix, 27 degrees above the maximum temperature.
In an statement to the media, Williams Performance Chief Rob Smedley is adamant Williams were within the prescribed limits set by Pirelli. Smedley stated the following:-
‘We are going to put in a notice of appeal because we pretty much disagree with the decision. If you read the document, the right rear tyre of car 19, Massa, on the FIA IR Gun read 137C.
‘We have two independent sensors, the first one is the PT1000 which sits inside the tyre blanket and tells us what the surface temperature is and that one was always in compliance with the regulations. The last time we could read it, when they took the set off to the grid, it was about 104C.
‘The next independent measure we have is from the car data. This is a completely independent measure. The right rear tyre of Massa’s car was 105.7C on the infrared temp sensor. So we have two independent sensors which both say we were in compliance with the regulations. We have data to back that up.’
Further on in his statement, Smedley added that Williams were using the same sensors as the FIA while “three” temperature readings all had Massa’s tyres within the limits leading him to believe that the FIA’s readings were incorrect. Smedley added the following:-
‘In addition, we have had independent correlation from our blanket temperature sensors and car temperature sensors to the FIA guns, which Pirelli did for us after all the fuss with Mercedes in Italy.
‘In addition to that, we have also bought exactly the same sensor that the FIA uses and we do random checks throughout the weekend to make sure this does not happen.
‘For us it’s quite critical that we understand where this problem is. We have three independent temperature measures and none of them give anything like the measure the FIA took on the grid.’