Sometimes going from heaven to hell emotionally can happen in a very short timespan.
That is exactly what has happened for the Audi Sport Abt Schaeffler team in Hong Kong on late Sunday evening, local time.
Daniel Abt took his first FIA Formula E Championship win earlier today, and by doing that, going into the lead of the Drivers Championship as well, while Audi were third in the Teams Championship. All this happened on Daniel’s 25th birthday.
But that win has now been taken from the team, since some FIA barcodes on the MGU and inverter didn’t match with what the team had informed the FIA about prior to the event.
The team has the right to appeal this decision, and they have announced that they intend to do so.
That means that Felix Rosenqvist and Mahindra Racing are the new winners of the second round in Hong Kong.
This isn’t the first time that Audi Sport hasn’t had their barcodes under quality control. The FIA WEC part of Audi Sport made an error during the 2016 season, resulting in them getting penalized for that too.
It is a huge issue that a works team like Audi don’t have their documentation right on their cars, and it might end up losing them both FIA Formula E Championship titles this year, after just 2 of 11 rounds run. Defending Champion Lucas di Grassi still has no points at all, and Daniel Abt only has 11 points from yesterday. The same thing is in the Teams Championship, where Mahindra Racing already have 44 points, while Sam Bird has the lead in the Drivers Championship with 35 points.
To rub even more salt on Audi’s wound, the Audi Sport Abt Schaeffler team got a fine of 5000 Euros, since five people from the team entered the track while not all cars had arrived in Parc Ferme. Race Control saw that as a very serious breach of the rules, especially since they had been in contact with a FIA representative that had pointed out that they should wait until the track was opened. The five people were on their way to the podium to celebrate the victory – a victory that now goes straight into the trash can and the bank account.