Lapped F1 drivers should have "global perspective" - Wolff

Lapped F1 drivers should have "global perspective" - Wolff
Sep 18, 2018, 3:33 PM

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff believes lapped Formula 1 drivers should have "more of a global perspective" when the leaders are coming up behind them, after Lewis Hamilton was badly held up in the Singapore Grand Prix.

Hamilton lost a lot of time to second-placed Max Verstappen and other cars behind as he tried to work his way past Romain Grosjean and Sergey Sirotkin, who were battling for position.

Haas driver Grosjean eventually received a five-second penalty for ignoring blue flags.

Hamilton's teammate Valtteri Bottas also had trouble with backmarkers, as he couldn't get close enough to Renault's Nico Hulkenberg to trigger blue flags while trying to stay clear of Kimi Raikkonen and Daniel Ricciardo.

Despite the incidents, race director Charlie Whiting said after the race that he felt no need to change blue flag rules.

Wolff believes that the drivers should discuss the matter at their next briefing.

"The first moment obviously you're angry that you have lost the gap," said Wolff.

"But you need to accept that these guys are fighting for position and trying to have their own best race. And we have to respect it.

"I think the drivers need to discuss this among themselves – that if the leaders come, and it's close, that maybe they should have more of a global perspective what's happening behind them.

"And I think that in a racing car sometimes you don't know what's happening and just see that the leader is coming and you're fighting for your own position. You have to respect everybody's struggle to perform."

The FIA shows blue flags when a driver is 1.2 seconds behind a rival he is trying to lap.

Bottas was angry that there were no blue flags shown to Hulkenberg, saying on the radio the gap was too big on a circuit like Marina Bay.

"He was upset because he couldn't close up to Hulkenberg, which was a shame," Wolff added.

"Kimi struggled less so, but when you look at Daniel, who was on a fresher tyre, on an ultra, probably raw pace two seconds quicker than Kimi, he couldn't overtake Kimi either.

"So again I think something which we need to look at, whether the gap, the 1.2 seconds, is a gap that needs to be adjusted for street circuits.

"But I think it's a rule and we have to respect the rule, and if we can optimise it for the future we have to look at it."

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Series Formula 1
Author Adam Cooper
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