Irvine calls for stronger tethers

Eddie Irvine has called for swift action to stop wheels flying off Grand Prix cars. The Ulsterman strongly criticised the sport's rules makers after the fatal accident at the Italian Grand Prix in which a fire marshal was killed by a wheel knocked off in the first lap high speed collision

Irvine calls for stronger tethers

On the eve of the Indianapolis Grand Prix Jacques Villeneuve said the drivers were to blame for the collision and not the circuit's designers.

But the Jaguar driver argued the FIA should come up with changes to make sure wheels do not come loose.

"If they can't get a wheel to stay onto a chassis there is something seriously wrong," he said, arguing driver conduct was not the issue.

"The issue is these damn wheels and we have got to address that.

"They have been flying off all year. It is a safety issue and something needs to be done about it. Now it'll happen but it is too late for one guy in Italy."

In an outspoken attack he said the sport needed to act on safety issues before people got hurt - not afterwards.

"Pre-emptive strikes on such issues would be nice from time to time," he added.

"Wheels have been falling off since the beginning and they came up with tethers and they kept falling off.

"After six months they came up with slightly stronger tethers but wheels kept falling off.

"We've put men on the moon, surely we can get a wheel to stay on a car using a piece of wire.

"I just feel sorry for the family in Italy which has been affected because we did not come up with a solution.

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