Sainz: Deeper F1 off-season conversation on Brazil Turn 4 expected

Carlos Sainz Jr says the conversation about racing guidelines in Formula 1 will continue in the winter after admitting the rules on what is allowed are still "not very clear".

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes W12, Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB16B

Drivers met with FIA officials including race director Michael Masi ahead of the Qatar Grand Prix to discuss racing rules after Max Verstappen's controversial defence against Lewis Hamilton in Brazil.

The Red Bull driver went off track while defending his lead from championship rival Hamilton at Turn 4 of the Interlagos circuit, an incident for which Mercedes requested the right to review after it wasn't investigated by the stewards during the race.

Hamilton said after the meeting with Masi that the racing rules remained unclear and that "every driver, I think, expect for Max, was asking about just for clarity".

Masi said in Qatar that the rules had been "made clear" to the drivers, although he admitted some disagreed with them.

Ferrari driver Sainz joined the group of drivers who believe the rules are still somewhat confusing, but reckons there will be further discussions after the season in order to make things better.

"In terms of racing approach it's not very clear still," said Sainz after the Qatar GP. "I think you've heard us already talk about this because we don't know exactly what is going to happen race by race.

"But as I said to the media after yesterday, it looks like in the winter there's going to be a deeper conversation about the way that we go racing that hopefully should clarify things a bit more."

Carlos Sainz Jr., Ferrari SF21, Charles Leclerc, Ferrari SF21

Carlos Sainz Jr., Ferrari SF21, Charles Leclerc, Ferrari SF21

Photo by: Charles Coates / Motorsport Images

McLaren driver Lando Norris said that while some aspects of the racing rules have been clarified, others still remain vague.

"I think some things are a bit more clear, some things not," he said. "I think what is clear is that... not every incident will be the same, even if it looks identical so it's hard to know what the different circumstances are.

"But I think most things were cleared up. But it's hard to kind of ever give a definite point and say this is what you can and can't do."

When asked if he will change his approach in on-track battles after the meeting, Norris said: "I mean, no. A little bit. There's a couple of things maybe you would adjust.

"I don't think you would change the way or we would change the way we race or anything, but yeah you would maybe just adjust a couple of things you could possibly now do, or not do. I don't think you'd change much."

Alpine's Fernando Alonso, one of the drivers who has been critical about the inconsistent of the stewards this year, said F1 needs the rules to be "black and white".

"I think we are all agreed on that, we need more consistency, we need black and white rules, because when they are grey," he said.

"Sometimes you feel you are benefitting from them, and sometimes you've been the bad or the idiot on track again. It's better when it's black and white.

"Let's see if we can improve altogether. I think it's not only an FIA issue, it's drivers, teams, FIA, all we need to work together to have a better rule."

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