Mercedes finance chief joins F1 board

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Bodo Uebber has joined Formula One’s management board, bringing to an end the dispute between Daimler and F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone.

Uebber is the finance chief at Daimler, the company which owns Mercedes. As reported by the Daily Telegraph, this move sees the German marque gain a good deal of control within Formula One. Ecclestone himself is a member for the board, as is Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo, and this has given the Italian team a great deal of influence on the sport in recent years. However, Mercedes may now also enjoy a similar sort of control over the future of Formula One thanks to this move.

The dispute between Ecclestone and Daimler spurned out of a bribery allegation made back in 2012. However, the Telegraph reports that Niki Lauda’s role at Mercedes has played a big role in ending the dispute and securing Uebber a place on Formula One’s board.

Mercedes is chasing its first win of the season at today’s Spanish Grand Prix, with Nico Rosberg starting from pole position and Lewis Hamilton starting P2. The team has surpassed its own expectations so far in 2013, but a win is crucial if they are to affirm themselves as championship contenders.

New Formula E champ, teammate fined for ‘underwear violation’

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During this past weekend’s pair of season-ending races in New York, newly-crowned Formula E champion Jean-Eric Vergne and Techeetah teammate Andre Lotterer were fined nearly $6,000 apiece for, well, there’s no easier way to say it than, “underwear violations.”

According to Jalopnik.com, the two drivers were fined for “wearing non-compliant” underwear during qualifying for Sunday’s second and final race of the weekend.

In addition to cash, the duo also lost two penalty points each for violating Article 30.14 of the Formula E 2017/2018 regulations.

In case you’re wondering, the violation has nothing to do with not wearing the right sponsor’s brand of jockeys or boxers.

Rather, Formula E ruled the underwear the drivers wore was a “safety issue” and that the drivers were penalized for wearing “non-compliant” underwear.

Drivers are required to wear fire- and flame-resistant outer- and under-garments while behind the wheel to help minimize the risk of being burned in the event of a crash and resulting fire.

Here’s how Formula E characterized the violation in a statement about Vergne’s penalty

“After checking the clothes, helmet and front head restraint of the driver, it was found that he was wearing non-compliant underwear pants which are not allowed by the [FIA’s] international sporting code. The driver apologized. The stewards consider that in this case the infringement occurred during group qualifying with limited cars on circuit for a short period of time.”

It’s not the first time Formula E drivers have been penalized for having on the wrong kind of drawers.

Former F-E champ Lucas di Grassi was penalized three points and nearly $10,000 in March for fire-resistant underwear that FIA officials called “too short.”

Gee, who knew that pre-qualifying “inspection” could be so personal?

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