• Red Bull has lodged an official protest against Mercedes’ private test with Pirelli, with team principal Christian Horner seeking “clarity”.

    Mercedes completed 1000km at the Circuit de Catalunya after the Spanish Grand Prix using its current car as Pirelli wanted to use contemporary machinery to carry out tyre development work. Horner told Sky Sports that he felt there had been a breach of regulations relating to in-season testing.

    “I don’t think we’re probably the only team that feels that way,” Horner said. “It’s not Pirelli’s fault, I think that Pirelli need to sort their situation out. The problem is the manner this has been dealt with has not been right.”In response, Mercedes team principal Ross Brawn said Mercedes had done nothing wrong and had not even been aware of which tyres it was testing.

    “We’ll have to wait and see what the stewards say,” Brawn said. “We’re pretty clear in our position; we were approached by Pirelli and asked to conduct a tyre test. They were very concerned by some of the problems they’ve been having recently, they didn’t feel that the car they’ve been using was representative and within their agreement with the FIA there’s a provision for them to ask any team to do a 1000km tyre test.

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