FIA clamps down on "unnecessarily" slow driving ahead of Baku F1 round

FIA Formula 1 race director Michael Masi is clamping down on drivers running too slowly in qualifying in Baku while trying to make a gap for themselves.

FIA clamps down on "unnecessarily" slow driving ahead of Baku F1 round

The new directive, issued by Masi in the second version of notes that he gave to the teams today, specified the last section of the lap that runs from Turns 17-20 and on to the start/finish line.

The concern is that drivers may back off before a qualifying lap in order to make space and then not be aware of how fast cars are approaching through the series of blind bends.

In specifying a particular section of track Masi is following the precedent established for the Russian GP in Sochi, where a similar warning covers Turns 12-13.

Although it hasn't been a particular issue at Baku in the past, Masi wanted to pre-empt any possible problems.

Slow driving on qualifying out laps has been also an issue at Monza in the past, although that related to the farce of drivers being backed up and missing their lap rather than safety issues, as in Sochi and Baku.

Masi cited Article 27.4 of the FIA sporting regulations, which refers to driving unnecessarily slowly. It reads: "At no time may a car be driven unnecessarily slowly, erratically or in a manner which could be deemed potentially dangerous to other drivers or any other person."

Track atmosphere

Track atmosphere

Photo by: Mark Sutton / Motorsport Images

Slow lap times will be judged in comparison with the maximum time between safety car lines that is always published after FP2.

In today's notes Masi wrote: "For reasons of safety, during each practice session, acts such as weaving across the track to hinder another car may be referred to the stewards.

"During free practice session 3 and the qualifying practice, the time published in accordance with Item 8 [the safety car line maximum time] of the race directors' event notes will be used as a guide by the stewards to determine if a driver is considered to be driving unnecessarily slowly on an out lap or any other lap that is not a fast lap or in lap.

"For the avoidance of doubt, the pit exit, as defined in Article 28.2 of the F1 sporting regulations is considered a part of the track and the provisions of Article 27.4 apply in this area."

With specific reference to Turns 17-20 he added: "During any practice session, any driver intending to create a gap in front of him in order to get a clear lap should not attempt to do this between the entry to Turn 17 through to the exit of Turn 20.

"Any driver seen to have done this will be reported to the stewards as being in breach of Article 27.4 of the sporting regulations."

shares
comments

Related video

Leclerc expects Ferrari to go "back to reality" after Monaco
Previous article

Leclerc expects Ferrari to go "back to reality" after Monaco

Next article

Hamilton: Young athletes need support with media after Osaka French Open withdrawal

Hamilton: Young athletes need support with media after Osaka French Open withdrawal
The Mercedes F1 pressure changes under 10 years of Toto Wolff Plus

The Mercedes F1 pressure changes under 10 years of Toto Wolff

OPINION: Although the central building blocks for Mercedes’ recent, long-lasting Formula 1 success were installed before he joined the team, Toto Wolff has been instrumental in ensuring it maximised its finally-realised potential after years of underachievement. The 10-year anniversary of Wolff joining Mercedes marks the perfect time to assess his work

The all-French F1 partnership that Ocon and Gasly hope to emulate Plus

The all-French F1 partnership that Ocon and Gasly hope to emulate

Alpine’s signing of Pierre Gasly alongside Esteban Ocon revives memories of a famous all-French line-up, albeit in the red of Ferrari, for BEN EDWARDS. Can the former AlphaTauri man's arrival help the French team on its path back to winning ways in a tribute act to the Prancing Horse's title-winning 1983?

Formula 1
Jan 31, 2023
How do the best races of F1 2022 stack up to 2021? Plus

How do the best races of F1 2022 stack up to 2021?

OPINION: A system to score all the grands prix from the past two seasons produces some interesting results and sets a standard that 2023 should surely exceed

Formula 1
Jan 31, 2023
Who were the fastest drivers in F1 2022? Plus

Who were the fastest drivers in F1 2022?

Who was the fastest driver in 2022? Everyone has an opinion, but what does the stopwatch say? Obviously, differing car performance has an effect on ultimate laptime – but it’s the relative speed of each car/driver package that’s fascinating and enlightening says ALEX KALINAUCKAS

Formula 1
Jan 30, 2023
Why F1's nearly man is refreshed and ready for his return Plus

Why F1's nearly man is refreshed and ready for his return

He has more starts without a podium than anyone else in Formula 1 world championship history, but Nico Hulkenberg is back for one more shot with Haas. After spending three years on the sidelines, the revitalised German is aiming to prove to his new team what the F1 grid has been missing

Formula 1
Jan 29, 2023
The potential-laden F1 car that Ferrari neglected Plus

The potential-laden F1 car that Ferrari neglected

The late Mauro Forghieri played a key role in Ferrari’s mid-1960s turnaround, says STUART CODLING, and his pretty, intricate 1512 was among the most evocative cars of the 1.5-litre era. But a victim of priorities as Formula 1 was deemed less lucrative than success in sportscars, its true potential was never seen in period

Formula 1
Jan 28, 2023
Why Vasseur relishes 'feeling the pressure' as Ferrari's F1 boss Plus

Why Vasseur relishes 'feeling the pressure' as Ferrari's F1 boss

OPINION: Fred Vasseur has spent only a few weeks as team principal for the Ferrari Formula 1 team, but is already intent on taking the Scuderia back to the very top. And despite it being arguably the most demanding job in motorsport, the Frenchman is relishing the challenge

Formula 1
Jan 27, 2023
The crucial tech changes F1 teams must adapt to in 2023 Plus

The crucial tech changes F1 teams must adapt to in 2023

Changes to the regulations for season two of Formula 1's ground-effects era aim to smooth out last year’s troubles and shut down loopholes. But what areas have been targeted, and what impact will this have?

Formula 1
Jan 26, 2023