SPIELBERG, Austria, July 12 (Reuters) - The Renault Formula One team lodged an official protest questioning the legality of the Racing Point cars after their rivals’ strong showing in Sunday’s Styrian Grand Prix in Austria.
Mexican Sergio Perez finished sixth and Canadian Lance Stroll, son of team owner Lawrence, seventh for the Canadian-owned team, with Renault’s Australian Daniel Ricciardo ending up eighth.
Race stewards said in a statement that the protest was over an alleged breach of the Formula One sporting regulations concerning the design and outsourcing of listed parts.
Racing Point have freely recognised their Mercedes-powered car, which also has a Mercedes gearbox and rear suspension, is a close copy of last year’s title-winning Mercedes but within the regulations.
“I don’t think what we’ve done is particularly new as far as taking a team’s concept and doing it ourselves, that’s been prolific in Formula One since the very first days,” technical director Andy Green said back in testing in February.
Sunday’s race was the second of the season, also held at the Red Bull Ring.
Renault and Racing Point, formerly known as Force India, have clashed before over the regulations with the French team stripped of points from the Japanese Grand Prix after a protest by the Silverstone-based outfit.
Racing Point had successfully protested against the brake bias system used by Renault.
Renault finished last season fifth overall, with Racing Point seventh. Racing Point are currently fourth with 22 points while Renault are sixth on eight. (Reporting by Alan Baldwin in London, editing by Christian Radnedge)