The FIA has rejected Ferrari’s request to include new recruit Carlos Sainz in next week’s post-season young driver test at Abu Dhabi.
Following the governing body’s decision to allow Fernando Alonso to drive for Renault at the one-day test scheduled on December 15, Ferrari was hoping to offer its new driver mileage onboard its 2020 car at Yas Marina.
Basically, the test is open only to young drivers holding an International A licence or drivers who have not competed in more than two Grands Prix, “unless otherwise approved by the FIA”.
But Renault successfully lobbied the FIA for an exemption on the grounds of Alonso’s two-year absence from F1. The FIA later amended the rules to allow in the test drivers who have not raced in F1 in 2020, a change that has compelled Red Bull and Alfa Romeo to run Sebastien Buemi and Robert Kubica next Tuesday at Yas Marina.
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Several teams were unhappy with Renault’s exemption, and Ferrari subsequently requested that it be allowed to enter Sainz.
“I think it’s quite a bit of a mess, and certainly we Ferrari, contrary to the fact that Fernando is testing in Abu Dhabi, we think it’s wrong,” explained Scuderia boss Mattia Binotto.
“We made it clear with FIA at the time during the various advisory committees.
“But having heard the decision, we have asked the FIA the permission for Carlos. We discussed it this weekend, but we have no feedback.”
Since last weekend however, Ferrari and all F1 teams have been informed by the FIA that no further exemptions would be granted.
Last week, Ferrari said that it could possibly set up a testing program for Sainz with a two-year-old car after the new year to allow the Spaniard to get acquainted with his crews and the Scuderia’s processes.
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