F1 drivers warned over qualifying tactics amid F3 penalty deluge

Formula 1 drivers have been told by FIA race director Michael Masi that they will face a grid penalty should they indulge in any unnecessary backing off tactics in qualifying.

F1 drivers warned over qualifying tactics amid F3 penalty deluge

The subject has become a hot topic after Spa, where drivers found themselves queuing up as they tried to find space to start a lap, especially in Q3. Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas both locked up on their out-laps as cars ahead slowed and forced them to brake suddenly.

Masi confirmed after the Belgian GP that the matter was under review, noting: “It is something that we have certainly discussed together with the sporting directors and at the current point, I think it is manageable.

“Once it gets beyond that, but at the current point it is something we are continuously monitoring during the season and we will continue to look at.”

The situation is accentuated at Monza by the significant advantage available from a tow, with drivers looking to find one either from a rival or through a coordinated strategy with a teammate.

During Friday evening’s driver’s briefing Masi made it clear that he doesn’t want to see a repeat of what was seen in Belgium, reportedly saying that it had “looked stupid” on TV.

He did not want to impose any specific rule or limitation but urged drivers to use common sense and give each other space, noting that he could use the rule about driving unnecessarily slowly to penalise any transgressions. However, there is some leeway for finding a space while staying off-line.

Penalties have already been used this weekend after a chaotic F3 qualifying session on Friday was red-flagged after many drivers slowed on the back straight to Parabolica, while others were approaching on flying laps.

Subsequently, as many as 15 drivers were penalised, this turning the grid on its head and setting a clear precedent for this afternoon’s F1 session.

Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel said on Thursday that he expects to see “strange games” in qualifying in Italy, especially with tows at such a premium.

“If you look on paper, this is the place where you expect these kind of strange games,” said the German.

“There’s very little you can do to sort of prepare because it depends on the timing of the session. Here I think the lap is a bit shorter so maybe it buys you a bit more flexibility but yeah, we’ll see on Saturday.”

shares
comments
Monza sausage kerb removed after huge F3 crash

Previous article

Monza sausage kerb removed after huge F3 crash

Next article

Italian GP: Vettel leads Verstappen in ultra-close FP3

Italian GP: Vettel leads Verstappen in ultra-close FP3
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Event Italian GP
Author Adam Cooper
How "overwhelming" McLaren move has given Ricciardo a new verve Prime

How "overwhelming" McLaren move has given Ricciardo a new verve

Daniel Ricciardo has found a new lease of life at McLaren – a move that’s been years in the making, as he explains to STUART CODLING…

How 2021's midfielders have taken lessons from F1's top teams Prime

How 2021's midfielders have taken lessons from F1's top teams

Formula 1’s latest Imola adventure turned into an expensive trip for many teams due to several crashes throughout the weekend. While balancing the books is an added factor in 2021 with the cost cap, a few midfield teams have cashed in early on development investments.

Formula 1
Apr 19, 2021
Emilia Romagna Grand Prix Driver Ratings Prime

Emilia Romagna Grand Prix Driver Ratings

A frantic wet race at Imola produced plenty of excitement and drama as drivers scrabbled for grip. Amid the hatful of mistakes and incidents that ensued, who kept their noses cleanest?

Formula 1
Apr 19, 2021
How the Emilia Romagna GP result hinged on three crucial saves Prime

How the Emilia Romagna GP result hinged on three crucial saves

Rain before the start of the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix promised to spice up the action, and the race certainly delivered on that. Max Verstappen got the best launch to win from Lewis Hamilton, but both got away with mistakes that could have had serious consequences

Formula 1
Apr 19, 2021
The back-bedroom world-beater that began a new F1 era Prime

The back-bedroom world-beater that began a new F1 era

The first in a line of world beaters was designed in a back bedroom and then constructed in a shed. STUART CODLING recalls the Tyrrell 001

Formula 1
Apr 18, 2021
Why Mercedes isn't confident it's really ahead of Red Bull at Imola Prime

Why Mercedes isn't confident it's really ahead of Red Bull at Imola

While Mercedes struck back against Red Bull by topping the times at Imola on Friday ahead of the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, the overall picture remains incredibly close. Despite having a possible edge this weekend, the reigning Formula 1 world champion squad is not taking anything for granted...

Formula 1
Apr 16, 2021
What Mercedes must do to keep its F1 title challenge on track Prime

What Mercedes must do to keep its F1 title challenge on track

Mercedes may find itself leading the drivers' and constructors' standings after Lewis Hamilton's victory in the Bahrain Grand Prix, but it is well aware that it came against the odds, with Red Bull clearly ahead. Here's what the Brackley team must do to avoid its crown slipping .

Formula 1
Apr 16, 2021
The double whammy that is defining Vettel’s F1 fate Prime

The double whammy that is defining Vettel’s F1 fate

It's been a tough start to Sebastian Vettel's Aston Martin F1 career, with a lack of pre-season testing mileage followed by an incident-packed Bahrain GP. But two key underlying factors mean a turnaround is no guarantee.

Formula 1
Apr 14, 2021