DAMS has hit back at claims that Kevin Magnussen’s exclusion in Formula Renault 3.5 at Paul Ricard last weekend was down to deliberate cheating.
Magnussen lost his race one victory when his car’s DRS flap failed scrutineering on Saturday because its shape and torsion had been changed by a layer of resin that had been added underneath the paint.
The DAMS team accepted that it had added the resin, saying it was part of the painting process, but it also pointed out that it had tried on several occasions to clarify the matter with Renault.
During the investigation into Magnussen’s car on Saturday the team presented e-mails that it sent to Renault Sport ahead of the season asking for clarifications on what was allowed with the DRS flap.
“We were not cheating,” DAMS boss Jean-Paul Driot insisted. “If we wanted to cheat we would have not have exchanged e-mails on it, we would have kept quiet.
“I don’t deny that there is 1mm of hardener on there before the paint. But they [Renault] never clarified anything. We asked them several times what we could do, and we asked them to check our cars but they never came. Now you see the result, and this is why I am angry.”
Magnussen went on to win race two comfortably, extending his championship lead to 43 points with just 50 still on offer thanks to his main rival Stoffel Vandoorne retiring with fuel pressure problems. That result played a part in DAMS deciding against appealing Magnussen’s exclusion, after it had initially declared that it would appeal.
“To withdraw the appeal is a logical move when you have done what we have done on the track yesterday,” added Driot. “We have proven that the car is fast, and we recovered the gap against second place.
“I hate going to court. We will not waste our time with lawyers, preparing files. We will finish the season in Barcelona in a proper way, on the track.”