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F1 needs “immediate action” over pitlane impeding problem, says Stella

McLaren boss Andrea Stella has called for “immediate action” over Formula 1’s pitlane impeding problems, after more issues in qualifying for the Mexico Grand Prix. 

Lando Norris, McLaren MCL60, leaves the garage

Lando Norris, McLaren MCL60, leaves the garage

Steven Tee / Motorsport Images

One of the unintended consequences of the recent introduction of a maximum lap-time for qualifying outlaps is that it has forced drivers to try to build up gaps to the cars ahead of them coming out of the pits. 

This has triggered times when drivers have impeded rivals from going out, and left competitors frustrated that they are being held up by those ahead of them. 

In Mexico on Saturday, Max Verstappen, George Russell and Fernando Alonso were all investigated for impeding other drivers in this manner in Q1, but all were cleared of any wrongdoing

However, with the FIA stewards urging that a better solution be found, Stella believes some urgency is needed as he thinks it is becoming an unfair situation for those being held up. 

“I think immediate action needs to be taken,” said Stella. “It's not a good spectacle.

“It makes the operations very difficult, because you send your car and you actually don't know when your car is going to get on track.  

“It puts all drivers too much at the mercy of the other drivers. And this for me starts to be unfair.

“We need to create policy aspects and ruling aspects to control the situation, which I think is just inappropriate.” 

Lando Norris, McLaren MCL60

Photo by: Sam Bloxham / Motorsport Images

Lando Norris, McLaren MCL60

McLaren driver Lando Norris thinks the current problems of impeding are now out of control and has become a bigger problem than the issue it was trying to solve. 

“It's something again that we've said is going to happen, is going to be problematic,” he said. 

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“Before you didn't see too many bad scenarios, now you've seen some worse scenarios, because people are wanting the gaps to be even bigger.  

“Everyone's kind of pushing the limits more and more because you can get away with it.  

“And because no one's been penalised for anything, even when people have been in the wrong or should have been penalised, people are just doing massive gaps now.” 

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