Michael Masi, FIA Racing Director, commented on a number of highlights related to the Turkish Race Weekend events and also answered a number of other questions..
Question: Can you comment on the 5-second penalty assigned to Pierre Gasly for the incident with Alonso that occurred on the first lap of the race?
Michael Massey: Let’s go back to the beginning of the year when, after discussions with riders and teams, it was decided to more liberally judge incidents on the first lap and follow the principle of “let them fight”.
But if the blame for what happened lies entirely with one of the participants in the collision, then there is a high probability that this will be followed by a fine. In this case, the stewards decided that only Pierre was to blame for the incident – as a result, a 5-second fine was issued.
Question: It has been suggested that Sergio Perez, who was driving to the left of Gasly, was not so close to his AlphaTauri to play a significant role in that incident, therefore, apparently, it cannot be argued that Gasley was really caught between two cars …
Michael Massey: Quite right. This is probably why the detailed analysis of the incident took a little longer. It is clear that Sergio was driving on an internal trajectory, but when the stewards studied all the available material, the circumstances of the incident became clear, and a decision was made on a 5-second fine.
Q: Yesterday there was an incident involving Fernando Alonso, who, according to some riders and teams, deserved a fine for not slowing down enough in the double yellow flag zone. However, he was not punished – what explains this?
Michael Massey: I then talked with the stewards and with the representative of Alpine F1, and everything was quite clearly explained. Let’s just say, if immediately after that it rained, and Alonso showed a really significant time on the circle, then the decision would be completely different. But the facts show that in those circumstances he drove the circle not with such a time, but in order to avoid such controversial situations in the future, we plan to analyze all this and, possibly, make adjustments to the rules in the future.
But it was one of those very rare situations when you can argue that everyone drove their first laps partly under the double yellow flags, without showing a significant time, because at that moment it was really the very first laps. Fernando was just in such a situation.
Q: After today’s race, the tires on some cars were very worn out, and Mario Isola said that this could lead to dangerous consequences. Is there a way to prevent this practice and prevent teams from using a single kit for the entire race? Is the FIA planning to do this and find out to what extent the situation was dangerous?
Michael Massey: The responsibility lies with the competitors themselves, i.e. teams must make their own decisions. This applies equally to any tire. In this particular race, intermediate tires were used, and we are really interested in what the teams were guided by. As always, the FIA will cooperate with Pirelli, because we have not seen such a picture as today for a long time. We will analyze everything, after which we will draw conclusions in order to decide whether it is necessary to take any measures for the future.
Q: Did you notice the incident between Perez and Hamilton when Sergio was forced to drive through the entrance to the pit lane?
Michael Massey: Of course, they did, but the rules unequivocally say that to the left of the limit post you need to pass only if you intend to turn into the pit lane. Therefore, in that situation there was nothing to talk about. The two drivers had an interesting duel, and after that neither team asked us any questions – neither Red Bull Racing, nor Mercedes.
Q: The fact that the Qatar Grand Prix is included in the calendar of the season was confirmed only after the race in Sochi. Have you demanded that the organizers of the stage in Qatar make any changes on their track?
Michael Massey: Yes, I was in Qatar after the Hungarian stage of the championship – by the way, when we inspected the track, the temperature was probably at least 46 degrees. They are completely redoing the entrance to the pit lane there, this work is almost complete, and I will go there again next weekend, before Austin.
Also, new double curbs are being installed on the track, the fence is being significantly changed, and walls made of car tires and Tecpro barriers are installed along the entire length of the circle.
Question: Is there a sufficient number of boxes there?
Michael Massey: More than enough. Forty is the base number of garages, and when we were there they were completing ten more. So there are 50 boxes in total on the pit lane of the Qatari track.
Q: During the MotoGP stage in Austin, many motorcycle riders seriously criticized the state of the track – were you worried about this situation, because it could somehow affect the Formula 1 race?
Michael Massey: I spent the entire weekend talking on the phone with my colleagues from the FIM Motor Federation to get a real picture of what was going on there. After the 2019 US Grand Prix, much of the circle was replaced with asphalt, but the sections of the track that drew criticism from motorcycle riders are located on a different part of the circle.
One of the FIA inspectors is currently in Austin, and he reports from there that work is already underway at the circuit to solve a number of existing problems. For the time remaining before the US Grand Prix, the owners of the track will do everything in their power.
Source: Формула 1 на F1News.ru by www.f1news.ru.
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