Formula E teams fined in Mexico for WiFi usage
Four Formula E teams have been fined following Friday’s shakedown session in Mexico City for using WiFi systems that are too fast.
The Dragon Racing, Renault e.dams, Jaguar and Venturi teams were found to have breached article 27.1 of the championship’s sporting regulations, which forbids the teams from using "electromagnetic radiation between 5 and 6 GHz".
This relates to the frequencies used by the teams when they set up their private internet channels in the garages.
In the illegal 5-6 GHz band, a 5 GHz frequency is the most potent that’s usable, because the other option – 5.9 GHz – is reserved for ‘intelligent transportation systems’ like traffic management and roadside assistance.
Fearing a clash with its own network to monitor data from the teams, the FIA does not allow the 5-6 GHz frequency range to be used without its written consent.
As a result, the four teams were given a €5,000 fine, with €3,500 suspended until the end of the 2017/18 season provided they do not breach the regulation a second time.
The Andretti team was also investigated for the same offence, but the stewards took no further action as the squad presented a letter from the FIA, which was written in 2016.
Motorsport.com understands this relates to Andretti being granted permission to use the frequency as it was the only viable option at the time, and this permission is still valid.
It is the first such penalty imposed in FE, and the stewards’ decision threatened more serious action if the infringement is repeated.
“It is forbidden to use an electromagnetic radiation between 5 and 6 GHz because it can disturb the data system of FIA,” read the stewards report. “In case of continuing this usage the stewards may impose a more severe penalty up to a disqualification.”
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