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Jan Lammers suggesting that Mercedes might be cheating with their engine


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#1 William Hunt

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Posted 26 July 2020 - 22:12

Jan Lammers suggests in this article that Mercedes might be doing something with oil or fuel additives to enhance their engine output. He claims that you can sometimes see puffs of smoke coming from their engines and he says he suspects they might be using illegal substances in their oil or fuel creating the extra smoke.

He says he is hoping that the FIA will test the Mercedes engine as hard as they tested the Ferrari engine during the winter:

 

http://www.f1journaa...-ergens-vandaa/



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#2 CountDooku

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Posted 26 July 2020 - 22:19

Looked to me like it was fluids sloshing about the engine under the incredibly high loads of turn 4 (?) in the Hungaroring. Hasn’t happened anywhere else.

#3 ArrowsLivery

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Posted 26 July 2020 - 22:29

I would like for FIA to get to the bottom of it. It’s not normal for Merc to have made such a big jump forward out of nowhere.

#4 William Hunt

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Posted 26 July 2020 - 22:52

Honda said after the first weekend in Austria that they thought it was strange that the Mercedes engine seemed to have gained power compared to the winter, between the lines they were suggesting that Mercedes might have worked on the engine during corona lockdown



#5 P123

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Posted 26 July 2020 - 23:09

Mercedes were working on something much more important during lockdown.



#6 Anja

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Posted 26 July 2020 - 23:14

It was really noticeable on Perez's car in Austria. I think I've heard about the smoke being explained as some excess oil getting burned on the hot exhaust pipes or something like that (point being, outside of the combustion cycle so not illegal). 



#7 JimmyClark

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Posted 26 July 2020 - 23:17

Looked to me like it was fluids sloshing about the engine under the incredibly high loads of turn 4 (?) in the Hungaroring. Hasn’t happened anywhere else.

 

It was happening on the RPs in Austria at times, though I can't recall now which turn(s) it was. 


Edited by JimmyClark, 26 July 2020 - 23:17.


#8 Nobody

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Posted 26 July 2020 - 23:45

It was really noticeable on Perez's car in Austria. I think I've heard about the smoke being explained as some excess oil getting burned on the hot exhaust pipes or something like that (point being, outside of the combustion cycle so not illegal).


That's what they call 'overfill', happens a little bit on the start line, or just before formation lap.

In Austria the RPs were puffing lap after lap out of turn 1 and 8/9 in all sessions.

It did not go unnoticed, plenty of punters in the thread here were commenting about it.

#9 Atreiu

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Posted 26 July 2020 - 23:47

Well, surely Ferrari will spare no effort to investigate this and FIA will be keen to eliminate all doubt as soon as possible no matter the outcome. Hopefully we won't have to guess too much or too long.



#10 r4mses

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 00:00

Well, surely Ferrari will spare no effort to investigate this and FIA will be keen to eliminate all doubt as soon as possible no matter the outcome. Hopefully we won't have to guess too much or too long.

 

When in fact, they should. Got enough problems to deal with on their car. They've no time to waste.



#11 MalcolmC

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 00:07

That's what they call 'overfill',

In Austria the RPs were puffing lap after lap

Overfill shouldn't cause puffing lap after lap.

And the term 'overfill' makes it sound like a mistake - the sort of thing you might do to your roadcar - I doubt the Mercedes engine technicians are that clumsy when pouring the oil in.


Edited by MalcolmC, 27 July 2020 - 00:12.


#12 Nobody

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 00:13

Overfill shouldn't cause puffing lap after lap.


Exactly, it happens once - excess is burned off and no more

#13 MalcolmC

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 00:15

Exactly, it happens once - excess is burned off and no more

So it's not happening lap after lap like you said?



#14 Nobody

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 00:35

So it's not happening lap after lap like you said?


It was, so I'm saying it wasnt overfill.

Unlike Austria though, I did not see it in Hungary

#15 beachdrifter

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 00:53

White smoke coming from an F1 engine in a way that is plain to see for everyone is obviously not an indication of the engine being illegal. 



#16 Atreiu

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 01:05

Wouldn’t it be an amateur move to cheat and have it given away by smoke puffs?

#17 Blackmamba

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 01:48

Mercedes aren’t so stupid as to advertise any shenanigans so publicly. I believe Lewis would have asked about the smoke and if the PU was being run illegally he would ask them politely to please not taint his Legacy. IMO Lewis’s character wants to win hard but fair he won’t stand for any cheating.

#18 Sardukar

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 01:52

Smoke was clearly visible on the racing points and sometimes the williams in austria and hungary, especially on initial acceleration and it was happening not just once. So i highly doubt its overfill.



#19 kumo7

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 02:56

unfounded accusation, me thinks.



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#20 maximilian

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 03:11

Would be awfully brazen (and really unnecessary) from Mercedes to pull a stunt like this while there is already heightened awareness about engine cheating after Ferrari got caught.  Unlikely they would think they could get away with it in the wake of THAT scandal.



#21 masa90

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 04:33

Well, if they are doing it, it is down to them. The drivers are innocent either way. They just drive the cars.

#22 GoldenColt

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 04:54

Damn! Mercedes must be shaking in their boots right now.


Edited by GoldenColt, 27 July 2020 - 06:21.


#23 ARTGP

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 05:10

Wouldn’t it be an amateur move to cheat and have it given away by smoke puffs?

 

In Formula 1, nobody is ever cheating. They just have an "interpretation" of the rules that leads them to believe their methods are legal  :lol: .

 

It's only upon further clarification by the FIA (if you can call it that....), that they learn these "interpretations" cannot carry on...



#24 ARTGP

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 05:14

It was happening on the RPs in Austria at times, though I can't recall now which turn(s) it was. 

 

 

That's what they call 'overfill', happens a little bit on the start line, or just before formation lap.

In Austria the RPs were puffing lap after lap out of turn 1 and 8/9 in all sessions.

It did not go unnoticed, plenty of punters in the thread here were commenting about it.

 

 

In Austria, it seemed as though it was only Perez, and occasionally the Mercedes of Bottas doing it. Largely from Turn 1, Turn 3 also.

 

However, in Hungary, all the Merc engine cars did it from Turn 1.  If it's unburned "something", then that's also going through the Turbo  :D .  The proverbial "afterburner" mode you might say. Engines need help at low RPM. Could be related to getting better turbo spool, so less energy used from the battery pack to spin up the MGU-H at low RPM.  Just wild guessing at this point. The smoke only appears out of the low speed corner exits so they are clearly running the engine to different parameters to generate the smoke at that time.


Edited by ARTGP, 27 July 2020 - 05:42.


#25 jee

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 05:39

Maybe they just didn't show it in testing?

I really hope Mercedes is doing exactly the same that Ferrari did last year. Would be hilarious if it comes out.



#26 ARTGP

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 05:44

Maybe they just didn't show it in testing?

I really hope Mercedes is doing exactly the same that Ferrari did last year. Would be hilarious if it comes out.

 

Testing wasn't televised, so who really knows. It was known Merc brought a new spec to Austria, so it might have been there all along, or only since Austria.


Edited by ARTGP, 27 July 2020 - 05:44.


#27 ARTGP

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 05:48

Would be awfully brazen (and really unnecessary) from Mercedes to pull a stunt like this while there is already heightened awareness about engine cheating after Ferrari got caught. 

 

Well Ferrari was under the microscope since USA, then had engines impounded in Brazil.  Yet still had the fuel capacity declaration discrepancy in the last race in Abu Dhabi. If it was related, then it's possible bigger teams are led to believe they are really above the rules.

 

Nevertheless, they could just be testing a grey area like they did before with the oil burning. Oil burning was pretty darn brazen  :lol: .


Edited by ARTGP, 27 July 2020 - 05:48.


#28 Huffer

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 05:48

When in fact, they should. Got enough problems to deal with on their car. They've no time to waste.

 

Nah, let Ferrari protest.In fact, they SHOULD protest if they or anybody else think that Mercedes are doing something against the rules.

 

Maybe it'll turn out to be something, most likely it'll turn out to be nothing at all. All the teams are subject to the same rules, and whilst I'm fairly certain Mercedes aren't doing anything that breaks the rules, anything that distracts Ferrari and causes them to lose more focus and sink deeper into the hole they're in, is a good thing. 



#29 ARTGP

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 05:49

Nah, let Ferrari protest.In fact, they SHOULD protest if they or anybody else think that Mercedes are doing something against the rules.

 

Maybe it'll turn out to be something, most likely it'll turn out to be nothing at all. All the teams are subject to the same rules, and whilst I'm fairly certain Mercedes aren't doing anything that breaks the rules, anything that distracts Ferrari and causes them to lose more focus and sink deeper into the hole they're in, is a good thing. 

 

Red Bull and Ferrari need time to develop their "theories" like RB did last season. So I don't think Protest is coming soon as it would be baseless and unfounded. Didn't Ferrari's use to smoke out of the garages in 2017? Since Ferrari have bigger problems than Mercedes...I think Red Bull will be the ones more interested in the smoking.


Edited by ARTGP, 27 July 2020 - 05:50.


#30 Huffer

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 05:55

Red Bull and Ferrari need time to develop their "theories" like RB did last season. So I don't think Protest is coming soon as it would be baseless and unfounded. Didn't Ferrari's use to smoke out of the garages in 2017? Since Ferrari have bigger problems than Mercedes...I think Red Bull will be the ones more interested in the smoking.

 

I don't think there needs to be all that much evidence on the part of the teams to lodge a complaint with the FIA. All they have to do is ask for clarity, as it "seems" Merc are doing something due to the smoking engines. You could be right about Ferrari, but also, RBR are having their own issues - although probably not as big as Ferrari's at the moment.

I'm curious about Honda's observation about it being unusual to have made such a large leap forward with the PU - weren't Honda also held back by the TD's from last season? Isn't it that it's more that Merc have made a small step forwrd with the another PU manufacturers having taken a step back?

 



#31 Lights

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 06:23

What a surprise that a Dutch guy starts accusations like this. I wonder what his motive is.



#32 Marklar

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 06:35

^

nothing against Dutch people and it isnt impossible either, but the hit rate of any Dutch pundit/reporter has been so absurdly low that I automatically file any accusations of them up as bs until somebody else delivers something.

#33 WouterF1

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 06:51

What a surprise that a Dutch guy starts accusations like this. I wonder what his motive is.

Jan Lammers (Dutch guy) is one of the last people to say anything about it. 

Toto Wolff has been asked by many teams since Austria, no Dutch people,  what causes the smoke. This was his answer last weekend:

 

 

Outside the reliability issues, the smoke has been seen on Racing Point’s Perez and even their own drivers’ Hamilton and Bottas’ cars. It isn’t being played down by Mercedes, though, as Toto Wolff says the investigation is already on at Brixworth.

Wolff did not have an answer in Hungary but added that Mercedes is looking into it and that the hope is to have an answer by Silverstone. “You can see when the oil tank is filled up at the beginning it looks like there is an issue,” said the Austrian.

“We don’t know where it comes from. We have to understand and it will clear from itself. It is not a reliability issue. I hope to be able to tell you in Silverstone.” The similar tune came from Williams – the other customer F1 team of Mercedes.



#34 Clatter

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 06:52

Well, if they are doing it, it is down to them. The drivers are innocent either way. They just drive the cars.

Are the drivers still innocent if they know about illegal devices on their car?

#35 Lights

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 07:08

Are the drivers still innocent if they know about illegal devices on their car?

 

I'd say yes, because they're always going to be told by their team that it does comply or that it's a loophole. Teams don't just create something illegal, they create something that borders it and requires an investigation to determine if it's illegal. Which can get so technically complicated that even the FIA doesn't understand it (see Ferrari englne scandal) so I wouldn't want to put any blame on the drivers for that.  Also as a driver you don't quickly question the legality of what your technical department is doing, that goes against the bond of trust and faith you have with the team.



#36 Lights

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 07:10

Also if I were at a non-Ferrari team, I'd definitely go into grey areas with the engine.

 

Even if the FIA catches on, what are they gonna do about it? Make a confidential agreement including private settlement and make me part of the inspection committee for other teams? Sign me up.



#37 aliefbielefeld

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 07:15

IIRC, they did almost the same thing just a couple of years ago with fuel burning? It doesn't seem to surprise me that their dominance isn't just due to sheer engineering and mechanical prowess, sooner or later people will figure out that their dominance isn't entirely legal and when that happens it'll be a major shock for the sport. Similar to the revelation of what Benetton did in 1994 with their illegal aids but with a much more catastrophic impact to the sport's integrity


Edited by aliefbielefeld, 27 July 2020 - 07:18.


#38 grunf77

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 07:21

Its for sending smoke signals to pit wall during installation lap.



#39 Huffer

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 07:24

IIRC, they did almost the same thing just a couple of years ago with fuel burning?

 

I'm pretty sure that ALL cars on the grid have to burn fuel - it's sort of a requirement for the ICE part of the PU ;)



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#40 w00dy

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 07:35

Mercedes aren’t so stupid as to advertise any shenanigans so publicly. I believe Lewis would have asked about the smoke and if the PU was being run illegally he would ask them politely to please not taint his Legacy. IMO Lewis’s character wants to win hard but fair he won’t stand for any cheating.

 

 

Is this a joke?



#41 BRK

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 07:49

I think we've seen this with Mercedes engines quite a few times in the last 2-3 years. Funnily enough, when I saw the odd blue smoke again at Hungary, I remarked to my wife it was too bad Ferrari took a hit with the engine fiasco last year otherwise they would've made some noise about it (which I would've welcomed). 

 

Let's see where this goes.  



#42 Ivanhoe

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 07:52

Jan is/was a fine driver, but is a terrible ‘pundit’



#43 BRK

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 07:54

Regarding it being too obvious: don't think it has anything to do with stupidity. Flexi-wings, McLaren's braking system, F-Duct were all fairly obvious and caught sooner or later (legal or not). 

 

Maybe Ferrari's engine advantage last year forced Mercedes to push the boundaries a bit...more than what Toto's letting on. 



#44 Paul McLucas

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 07:55

Ferrari needs to install a spy at Mercedes HPP.

 

They feel they are the only 100% legal PU now.



#45 Requiem84

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 07:56

The problem with the Dutch pundits is that they are basically big Verstappen fans. They always argue for his benefit, 99 out of 100 times. Often with a sound basis and just throwing things up in the air.

It’s painful. It’s like reading a driver vs driver topic in here.

The only positive exception is Robert Doornbos, who is a lot more knowledgeable and ‘somewhat’ more objective.

#46 Chillimeister

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 08:00

Regarding it being too obvious: don't think it has anything to do with stupidity. Flexi-wings, McLaren's braking system, F-Duct were all fairly obvious and caught sooner or later (legal or not). 

 

Maybe Ferrari's engine advantage last year forced Mercedes to push the boundaries a bit...more than what Toto's letting on. 

 

Yes. I guess if the Mercs suddenly slow at Silverstone it will be because they have decided to run a heap of downforce ...   ;)



#47 w00dy

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 08:02

Yes. I guess if the Mercs suddenly slow at Silverstone it will be because they have decided to run a heap of downforce ...   ;)

 

Well, we can bet that one of the Mercs will be slower than the other. Care to guess which one?:)



#48 Gary Davies

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 08:05

No dots to be joined here.  :cool:

ab3x4h0abp5g_wd640.jpeg



#49 Beri

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 08:08

Looked to me like it was fluids sloshing about the engine under the incredibly high loads of turn 4 (?) in the Hungaroring. Hasn’t happened anywhere else.

 

Turn 1 at the Red Bull Ring was showing the black and the pink Mercedes' puffing out a lot of smoke.



#50 Ali623

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 08:12

In fairness, weren't Mercedes saying the Ferrari engine gains last year were legally impossible to achieve with how developed the engines are now. And this year Mercedes have made a similar step in performance...  :confused: