McLaren Racing CEO Zak Brown has snapped back at Racing Point team boss Otmar Szafnauer after the pair traded comments over the ongoing ‘copying’ saga.
Last weekend it was announced that Racing Point would be fined $400,000 and docked 15 championship points after the FIA found them guilty of copying Mercedes’ rear brake duct design, despite that area of the rules containing many grey areas, which the governing body even admitted to itself.
Brown said McLaren would appeal the decision and push for a tougher penalty and clarity of the matter, and said Szafnauer was talking ‘BS’ when he insisted his team copied the ducts from photos.
Szafnauer hit back, saying: “To Zak Brown it is BS because he’s not an engineer. He’s got no idea what he’s talking about. Zero.
“I’m surprised at how little he knows about the rules of Formula 1. It seem to me he knows more about historic racing than he does about Formula 1.”
Brown got his chance to snap back at his fellow American, joking that Szafnauer should join him for a historic race with his current F1 car, because it’s based on last year’s Mercedes.
“I thought a lot of what Otmar said was accurate. I’m not an engineer. I don’t know the rule book first page to the last page,” he said, whilst sat alongside one another.
“But as CEO you have a racing team and it’s their job to know the rule book and the regulations.
“In my time here leading McLaren I’ve never been fined a dollar, let alone four hundred thousand. I’ve never been docked points – I think Otmar thought it was seven and a half points until Sky television pointed out it was 15.
“As far as historic racing, I think people that know me know I enjoy historic racing and I’d invite Otmar to come join me because he’s got a historic car that he’s currently racing.”
McLaren later backed out of its decision to appeal, with only Ferrari, Renault and Racing Point pushing ahead with their appeals.