Mugello gravel trap approach won’t work everywhere - FIA

FIA Formula 1 race director Michael Masi says that the gravel trap solution to track limits seen at Mugello cannot be applied at all circuits, despite finding favour with drivers.

Mugello gravel trap approach won’t work everywhere - FIA

Unlike many modern venues, Mugello has gravel traps lining much of the circuit, to the extent that in his race directors’ notes issued to teams, Masi formally noted that “track limits at the exit of Turns 3, 5, 9, 11 and 15 will not be monitored as the defining limit at each of these locations is the gravel trap.”  

The subject of run-off areas and track limits has become a regular hot topic in F1 drivers’ briefings this year.

At the Belgian GP, Carlos Sainz suggested that the balance of risk and reward was wrong after artificial grass was removed from the edge of the track to help Spa earn an FIM licence.

As a result there was even less of a penalty than previously for any F1 drivers who ran wide.

Sainz was one of many F1 drivers who preferred the gravel arrangement at Mugello over asphalt run-off areas.

I think it's great to see the gravel traps back,” said the Spaniard. “And it's probably going to give the FIA some confidence that these kind of run-off areas work to protect from track limits and all those issues that we're having in other tracks, so it was nice to see.”

However, when asked if gravel traps could be used more widely, Masi stressed that it wasn’t possible.

“No, we can't not have them everywhere,” said the Australian. “It's not a one size fits all, as I've said this multiple times. We need to come up with the appropriate solutions with each of the circuit owners and operators.

“And we'll continue working through that. We've already discussed it with the drivers. So I think it's a bit much to ask. It's not the solution everywhere, let's put it that way.”

Read Also:

GPDA director Sebastian Vettel suggested that one possible option could be a strip of gravel between the track and an asphalt run-off.

“I think as a driver you prefer the fact that if you go off, it gets penalised,” said the Ferrari driver.

“I think it makes things a lot more straightforward. But I think you have to balance also the gravel against the asphalt in terms of if things go wrong.

“Maybe we can have an intermediate solution where you have a gravel strip initially, and therefore there is no point to go wide, and after that have asphalt for the benefit of having less run-off, bring the spectators closer to the track, and make it safer for us, so the cars slow down if you lose control or whatever.

“It’s not an easy one, but for sure with all the asphalt around in some tracks, it does take away the character and make it a bit too easy to make mistakes.”

shares
comments

Related video

Mercedes explains Hamilton brake fire on Mugello grid

Previous article

Mercedes explains Hamilton brake fire on Mugello grid

Next article

The bust and boom that will start Ferrari's second F1 millennium

The bust and boom that will start Ferrari's second F1 millennium
Load comments
The tough balancing act facing Schumacher’s Netflix film producers Prime

The tough balancing act facing Schumacher’s Netflix film producers

Michael Schumacher is the latest sporting superstar to get the ‘Netflix treatment’, with a special documentary film airing on the US streaming giant’s platform this month. DAMIEN SMITH has the inside track on how the filmmakers gained access to tell the human story behind one of Formula 1’s most publicity-shy champions - while the man himself, for obvious reasons, is in absentia… 

Why Verstappen should be confident of Russian GP recovery Prime

Why Verstappen should be confident of Russian GP recovery

For the second race in a row, Mercedes has ended the first day of track action on top. It’s in a commanding position at the Russian Grand Prix once again – this time largely thanks to Max Verstappen’s upcoming engine-change grid penalty. But there’s plenty to suggest all hope is not lost for the championship leader at Sochi...

Formula 1
Sep 24, 2021
Why dumping the MGU-H is the right move for F1 Prime

Why dumping the MGU-H is the right move for F1

OPINION: With its days apparently numbered, the MGU-H looks set to be dropped from Formula 1’s future engine rules in order to entice new manufacturers in. While it may appear a change of direction, the benefits for teams and fans could make the decision a worthwhile call

Formula 1
Sep 23, 2021
The floundering fortunes of F1’s many Lotus reboots Prime

The floundering fortunes of F1’s many Lotus reboots

Team Lotus ceased to exist in 1994 - and yet various parties have been trying to resurrect the hallowed name, in increasingly unrecognisable forms, ever since. Damien Smith brings GP Racing’s history of the legendary team to an end with a look at those who sought to keep the flame alive in Formula 1.

Formula 1
Sep 22, 2021
Why the 2021 title fight is far from F1's worst, despite its toxic background Prime

Why the 2021 title fight is far from F1's worst, despite its toxic background

OPINION: Formula 1 reconvenes for the Russian Grand Prix two weeks after the latest blow in ‘Max Verstappen vs Lewis Hamilton’. While the Silverstone and Monza incidents were controversial, they thankfully lacked one element that so far separates the 2021 title fight from the worst examples of ugly championship battles

Formula 1
Sep 22, 2021
How Mika Hakkinen thrived at Lotus Prime

How Mika Hakkinen thrived at Lotus

Mika Hakkinen became Michael Schumacher’s biggest rival in Formula 1 in the late-90s and early 2000s, having also made his F1 debut in 1991. But as MARK GALLAGHER recalls, while Schumacher wowed the world with a car that was eminently capable, Hakkinen was fighting to make his mark with a famous team in terminal decline

Formula 1
Sep 21, 2021
The forgotten F1 comeback that began Jordan’s odyssey  Prime

The forgotten F1 comeback that began Jordan’s odyssey 

Before Michael Schumacher – or anyone else – had driven the 191 (or 911 as it was initially called), Eddie Jordan turned to a fellow Irishman to test his new Formula 1 car. JOHN WATSON, a grand prix winner for Penske and McLaren, recalls his role in the birth of a legend…

Formula 1
Sep 20, 2021
The squandered potential of a 70s F1 underdog Prime

The squandered potential of a 70s F1 underdog

A podium finisher in its first outing but then never again, the BRM P201 was a classic case of an opportunity squandered by disorganisation and complacency, says Stuart Codling.

Formula 1
Sep 18, 2021