F1 team bosses call for safer solution to Monza qualifying issues

Formula 1 team bosses have called on series organisers to find a better way of managing traffic problems in qualifying at Monza, after pitlane near-misses at the Italian Grand Prix.

F1 team bosses call for safer solution to Monza qualifying issues

As the value of a slipstream is so high at the high-speed track, qualifying sessions at Monza have always been fraught as drivers battle for track position to get a tow from the car ahead of them - while not running so close that they lose aerodynamic efficiency.

During Friday evening’s qualifying session for the sprint, there were several flash points both on-track and in the pitlane.

Max Verstappen and Pierre Gasly were forced to abort flying laps in Q1 after being baulked by slow-moving cars on preparation laps.

Then in Q2, Sebastian Vettel's Aston Martin was waved out of his garage into the path of Lewis Hamilton, nearly causing contact, while a member of Esteban Ocon's crew was judged to have moved into a dangerous position in the pitlane as he signalled for the Frenchman to be released.

As a result, the Aston Martin and Alpine teams were each fined 5000 Euros for their unsafe releases.

Aston Martin team boss Otmar Szafnauer told Autosport that he felt F1 needed to find a way to stop the Monza shenanigans happening in the future.

“We’ve got to look at that to make sure we curtail it before something happens,” he said.

“A lot of people were involved. It’s because the value of a tow is so high around here, that people try those types of things. We’ve got to think about how to do that better.”

Pierre Gasly, AlphaTauri AT02, Esteban Ocon, Alpine A521, and Carlos Sainz Jr., Ferrari SF21, in the pit lane

Pierre Gasly, AlphaTauri AT02, Esteban Ocon, Alpine A521, and Carlos Sainz Jr., Ferrari SF21, in the pit lane

Photo by: Mark Sutton / Motorsport Images

Red Bull team boss Christian Horner concurred that the unique characteristics of Monza meant that F1 needed to think up a better approach.

“The tow is so very valuable,” he told Sky. “I think Max got caught up on the first run by being out of sync. There was a whole bunch of cars all over the place and the closing speeds are so massive here.

“It's very difficult unless you send them out one by one for individual qualifying, and it's all part of it trying to get that bit of track position.

“But it does need to be safe. And, of course, the pitlane is getting a little bit nuts as well.

“Thankfully there were no incidents today, but it's something we should definitely have a good look at."

Horner also felt that teams could do a better job in informing their drivers of fast-approaching cars.

“You've got some big closing speeds,” he reiterated.

“Of course the teams tell them [the drivers] who is on a fast lap. Sometimes you feel that perhaps communication could be better, but it's one of the nuances of racing in Monza I'm afraid.”

shares
comments

Related video

Ricciardo left with "internal rage" after Monza F1 qualifying
Previous article

Ricciardo left with "internal rage" after Monza F1 qualifying

Next article

Why Alonso's tyre gamble could inspire others in F1's Monza sprint

Why Alonso's tyre gamble could inspire others in F1's Monza sprint
Load comments
How Formula E factors could negate Red Bull's Jeddah practice gap to Mercedes Plus

How Formula E factors could negate Red Bull's Jeddah practice gap to Mercedes

Mercedes led the way in practice for Formula 1’s first race in Jeddah, where Red Bull was off the pace on both single-lap and long runs. But, if Max Verstappen can reverse the results on Saturday, factors familiar in motorsport’s main electric single-seater category could be decisive in another close battle with Lewis Hamilton

Why Norris doesn’t expect Mr Nice Guy praise for much longer Plus

Why Norris doesn’t expect Mr Nice Guy praise for much longer

Earning praise from rivals has been a welcome sign that Lando Norris is becoming established among Formula 1's elite. But the McLaren driver is confident that his team's upward curve can put him in the mix to contend for titles in the future, when he's hoping the compliments will be replaced by being deemed an equal adversary

Formula 1
Dec 2, 2021
What Ferrari still needs to improve to return to F1 title contention Plus

What Ferrari still needs to improve to return to F1 title contention

After a disastrous 2020 in which it slumped to sixth in the F1 constructors' standings, Ferrari has rebounded strongly and is on course to finish third - despite regulations that forced it to carryover much of its forgettable SF1000 machine. Yet while it can be pleased with its improvement, there are still steps it must make if 2022 is to yield a return to winning ways

Formula 1
Dec 2, 2021
How F1 teams and personnel react in pressurised situations Plus

How F1 teams and personnel react in pressurised situations

OPINION: The pressure is firmly on Red Bull and Mercedes as Formula 1 2021 embarks on its final double-header. How the respective teams deal with that will be a crucial factor in deciding the outcome of the drivers' and constructors' championships, as Autosport's technical consultant and ex-McLaren F1 engineer explains

Formula 1
Dec 1, 2021
Why Ferrari is sure its long-term Leclerc investment will be vindicated Plus

Why Ferrari is sure its long-term Leclerc investment will be vindicated

Humble yet blisteringly quick, Charles Leclerc is the driver Ferrari sees as its next
 world champion, and a rightful heir to the greats of Ferrari’s past – even though, by the team’s own admission, he’s not the finished article yet. Here's why it is confident that the 24-year-old can be the man to end a drought stretching back to 2008

Formula 1
Nov 30, 2021
The downside to F1's show and tell proposal Plus

The downside to F1's show and tell proposal

Technology lies at the heart of the F1 story and it fascinates fans, which is why the commercial rights holder plans to compel teams to show more of their ‘secrets’. STUART CODLING fears this will encourage techno-quackery…

Formula 1
Nov 29, 2021
How getting sacked gave Mercedes F1’s tech wizard lasting benefits Plus

How getting sacked gave Mercedes F1’s tech wizard lasting benefits

He’s had a hand in world championship-winning Formula 1 cars for Benetton, Renault and Mercedes, and was also a cog in the Schumacher-Ferrari axis. Having recently ‘moved upstairs’ as Mercedes chief technical officer, James Allison tells STUART CODLING about his career path and why being axed by Benetton was one of the best things that ever happened to him

Formula 1
Nov 28, 2021
The remarkable qualities that propelled Kubica’s F1 comeback Plus

The remarkable qualities that propelled Kubica’s F1 comeback

It’s easy to look at
 Robert Kubica’s second Formula 1 career and feel a sense of sadness that he didn’t reach the heights for which he seemed destined. But as BEN ANDERSON discovered, performance and results are almost meaningless in this context – something more fundamental and incredible happened…

Formula 1
Nov 27, 2021