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F1 can't postpone response to track limits chaos, says Sainz

Formula 1 must act immediately to find a solution that avoids future track limits chaos, says Carlos Sainz, in the wake of the Austrian Grand Prix.

Carlos Sainz, Ferrari SF-23

Photo by: Steven Tee / Motorsport Images

Last weekend's Red Bull Ring event descended into near farce as race control could not keep up with the more than 1200 track limit offences that were alleged to have taken place.

Delays in going through them eventually meant the final result was not sorted until many hours after the race.

As part of that late investigation, several drivers, including Sainz and Lewis Hamilton, got penalties that shuffled them down the order.

Sainz found out that he had dropped from fourth to sixth just as he took off from Austria to head home, and was far from happy about things.

But he believes what is important now is F1 and the FIA take firm action to prevent repeat trouble.

The FIA had already suggested that the Red Bull Ring should build new gravel traps to improve matters at its venue, but more action is needed according to Sainz.

"There has been so many solutions [offered] and, for some reason, we keep postponing," he said when asked by Autosport about what the solution was to the track limits problem.

"It's like an alarm: postpone, postpone, instead of acting on finding solutions for these kinds of circuits.

"For me, it is time to act, whatever they want to do. I would be even happy if you leave the rule the same and you put a [detection] loop, because at least the loop is telling me immediately if I've done a track limit and I know I can correct it."

Carlos Sainz, Scuderia Ferrari and manager Carlos Oñoro

Carlos Sainz, Scuderia Ferrari and manager Carlos Oñoro

Photo by: Simon Galloway / Motorsport Images

Sainz said that when he found out about the post-race penalty, he almost became resigned to matters because the situation had been so out of control.

"I was taking off, and it was just an email," he said. "I was already quite upset about the whole day and then suddenly you're taking off and you're going to be one hour without the phone.

"Then the last thing you read before taking off is the second penalty and P6, so you can imagine how it felt. In Austria I was really angry. This time, I was like, I don't know if I expected it, but the whole weekend was such a mess that you could expect the unexpected.

"It happened, so whatever. We will get over it and make sure this time I try to help as much as I can, F1 and the FIA, to find solutions.

"We need to, because I think this sport cannot allow itself another weekend like that, because it really doesn't look good, and it is not good as a driver and not good as a team."

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Sainz believes that Austria got out of control because of the lag in drivers running wide and then it being deemed a track limits breach. He said this had consequences for the entire weekend.

"The problem is I did Q2 in Austria, finished my lap, and then [you worry] it might be track limits, which means you might go or might not go to Q3.

"So, should we run another set of tyres in case my lap gets cancelled or not? Okay, let's run. We run. And then your lap was okay, so it just made me waste a set of tyres and my weekend is compromised.

"At least [we need] immediacy to give the driver feedback, so we can react accordingly."

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