Method E staff DS Penske is going through a tremendous of €25,000 and had each its drivers penalized after discovering that the staff had put in unlawful Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) scanning tools on the pitlane entrance earlier than a follow session on the Portland E-Prix.
FIA Stewards (the game’s governing physique) informed The Verge in a press release that it is in opposition to the foundations for “opponents to put in or place any tools within the pit lane.” The FIA additionally mentioned that the info collected by this tools would give the competitor a “enormous and unfair benefit.”
Along with the tremendous, each staff drivers, Stoffel Vandoorne and Jean-Éric Vergne, had been required to begin the day’s race from the pitlane, which means they needed to be part of the observe in spite of everything of their opponents had handed them.
Stoffel Vandoorne, one of many drivers for DS Penske, mentioned in an interview with Autosport that the staff wasn’t making an attempt to “steal information” from different groups. “That is not what we did; we had been simply making an attempt to verify what set of tires others had been utilizing.”
He mentioned that different groups typically use photographers within the pitlane to scope out what kind of setups different groups are operating and that they merely discovered a “intelligent method, or a straightforward method, and we paid an enormous worth for that.”
Within the tremendous discover, the FIA mentioned that this expertise might “acquire stay information from all automobiles,” which might be in violation of the foundations however did not accuse DS Penske of it outright; it simply penalized them for organising the unlawful scanning tools.
This yr, Method E switched to a brand new tire producer and launched a brand new automobile design. Some groups have encountered difficulties adjusting to the brand new tire, which could clarify the motivation behind this “inventive” information assortment.
Regardless of the setback, DS Penske’s drivers completed twelfth and thirteenth place, ranging from the again of the grid. The staff sits in fifth place (out of 11 groups) within the season standings.