Formula 1 grid penalties must end - Ross Brawn

Ross Brawn says Formula 1 chiefs are pushing for an end to grid penalties in grand prix racing because the system has got out of control

Formula 1 grid penalties must end - Ross Brawn

Ever since F1 moved towards long-life components - including engines and gearboxes that must last a set number of races - drivers who use too many components have received grid demotions.

But situations such as Stoffel Vandoorne's 65-place grid penalty at Spa have left Brawn adamant a better solution must be found.

"I hate the fact that we're having to affect the racing because of the technical issues," Brawn told Autosport.

"I know you can say if a car breaks down in a race that's a technical issue and you've affected the race, but I think the fans understand that.

"For a fan to stomach that his hero is on the back of the grid because he had to change the engine, that's not great sport.

"We've got to find a solution to that, either through a different form of penalty or to remove the penalty altogether and just live with the problem that it was trying to fix."

Why drivers should be punished for team failings

Brawn said discussions with the FIA had begun and hopes for changes by the time new engine regulations are introduced in 2021 at the very latest.

"Maybe we'll be able to implement a better solution before then, because it's a massively unpopular aspect of Formula 1 at the moment," he added.

"One of the things that has been suggested is loss of constructors' points.

"There could be other more discrete penalties.

"We used to have the token system for the engine, and that wasn't bad actually. It got a little bit complicated, but you could remove the tokens for a while.

"It needs a lateral think. The grid penalties are very unpopular, and we should be finding a better solution."

Dropping the DRS overtaking aid is another of Brawn's ambitions.

"It's a compromise," said Brawn. "What we should do is find a better solution.

"What we really want is the cars to be able to slipstream one another properly and overtake.

"So for me the solution, which we've now started a programme on, is to design the cars, so that they can race each other in close proximity.

"A current Formula 1 car is totally optimised around running by itself.

"The teams, when they go in the windtunnel and create their CFD programmes to develop the car, it's all done in isolation. So when you put another car around it, the car doesn't work as well.

"What we are working on is generating the capacity to look at cars that are racing each other in close proximity, and what sort of designs we need to enable that to happen.

"When we do that, which is our ambition for 2021, then we will have cars that don't need DRS."

shares
comments
Hamilton: Early design shift to 2018 could sway F1 title fight
Previous article

Hamilton: Early design shift to 2018 could sway F1 title fight

Next article

Honda makes Alonso's Belgian GP F1 engine available for Monza

Honda makes Alonso's Belgian GP F1 engine available for Monza
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