Brown urges review of minimum lap rule for GPs
McLaren Racing boss Zak Brown is urging Formula 1 and the FIA to review the minimum lap rule that allowed the Belgian Grand Prix to be called a “race” despite its truncated proceedings.
Formula 1’s field of drivers completed three laps behind the safety car at Spa before the event was permanently called off amid the unrelenting rain and dangerous conditions.
However, as the minimum two-lap requirement had been fulfilled, per Article 6.5 of the sporting regulations the race was declared as official, with a podium ceremony taking place and half-points awarded to the top ten drivers.
But Brown, while supportive of the FIA’s efforts to wait things out at Spa in a bid to get the race underway, disagreed with a final result being declared on the basis of three laps behind the safety car.
A message to the fans – here’s my take on today pic.twitter.com/dGtOSKFODu
— Zak Brown (@ZBrownCEO) August 29, 2021
“That was certainly a disappointing day,” said the McLaren boss in a video addressed to the team’s fans on Twitter.
“We wanted to race, the drivers wanted to race, and of course we know you wanted to see a race, and that’s not what you saw.
“The FIA did everything they could to put on the race. They can’t control the weather. They do need to put the drivers safety first, the conditions were not raceable.
“The regulations state after you do a few laps, it can be called a race. I think that needs to be reviewed.
“I don’t think there’s anyone that would argue that the weather was safe to race in. But we need a better solution as a sport.
“When that type of situation happens, the outcome should not be a race after three laps, behind a safety car.
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“That is what the rules say. But I think that now needs to be reviewed, by all of us, to learn from today and realise if we are getting this type of situation, what would we do differently to make sure the outcome is that everyone gets their racing – whether that’s the following day, whether it’s coming back.
“It’s quite complicated with the schedule, but I don’t think anyone would say today it felt right calling that a race.
“So we will get to work on this and hope that something like this doesn’t happen again.”
Read also – Norris: No points should have been awarded for safety car laps
In Spa on Sunday evening, FIA race director Michael Masi suggested that the governing body, Formula 1 and the teams would take stock of Sunday’s proceedings and get together to review potential changes.
“I think after this weekend, and at our next meeting for next year, we’ll look at a whole lot of things that you know we can all look at, to see what everyone wants,” said Masi.
“As you’re all well aware we’re at one of those points that the FIA works with all 10 teams and F1 to develop the regulations. And so we’ll go through all of the various scenarios and see what everyone thinks.”
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