F1 drivers played down the effect of F1’s new radio restrictions but far fewer messages were broadcast during Sunday’s race.
Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel were of the view that the ban made little to no difference. However both experienced the consequence of the new regulations during the race: Hamilton was heard being told he couldn’t be given one instruction due to the new restrictions and Sebastian Vettel referred to a similar, unbroadcast discussion.
As always builing up a true picture of how much radio traffic goes on is difficult because FOM does not broadcast all of them. Because of this the total number of messages broadcast has varied considerably from race to race in the past.
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There were noticeably fewer radio messages during practice and qualifying last weekend, and in the race just 87 were noted. That’s a drop of over 100 compared to the same grand prix two years ago. However we saw quieter races than this before the latest restrictions – the 2014 Italian Grand Prix had just 75 messages.
Therefore it may be that the effect of the restrictions was exaggerated by FOM having one of their periodic quiet races for radio traffic. We should get a better idea over the coming rounds how big an effect the new rules have had.
It’s interesting to note that many of the messages heard in the last race before the new restrictions came in would still be legal under the current rules.
Following concerns raised by some including Christian Horner that the restrictions would block some of the more interesting radio discussions we’re heard in recent years, the new radio restrictions were watered down at the last minute. Drivers were once more allowed to discuss strategies with their engineers.
Perhaps someone should have told Toro Rosso, as they had one very unhappy Max Verstappen on their hands after a strategic mix-up. Most teams follow the practice of not disadvantaging whichever of their drivers is ahead by pitting the other first but Toro Rosso did just that.
Sainz undoubtedly made a smart call to pit when he did, but according to Verstappen he had previously told the team more than once he wanted to come in. These messages were not broadcast. Teams are still allowed to call their drivers into the pits, and the fact this didn’t happen goes some way towards explaining Verstappen’s expletive–ridden fury.
Whatever effect the radio restrictions have had, it hasn’t stopped the team’s discussions giving some revealing insights into what’s really going on.
2016 Australian Grand Prix team radio transcript
|PR||To Esteban Gutierrez||Wind is on the low side, across on the main straight, as has been for all these days but much lower intensity. So everything looks alright.|
|PR||To Jolyon Palmer||Extra formation lap, Jo.|
|PR||From Jolyon Palmer||Copy that|
|1||From Kevin Magnussen||Puncture, puncture.|
|1||To Kevin Magnussen||OK understood box this lap.|
|2||To Sebastian Vettel||That was awesome. Keep your head down.|
|3||From Esteban Gutierrez||I got problems with the engine.|
|3||To Esteban Gutierrez||Try to push on the straight.|
|3||From Esteban Gutierrez||OK, now it’s working.|
|3||To Esteban Gutierrez||So keep going, all fine now.|
|4||To Sebastian Vettel||OK wind is stable and low-ish and overcast. Track temperature is dropping.|
|6||To Kevin Magnussen||Respect the blue flags.|
|6||From Kevin Magnussen||I am respecting the blue flags, they’re everywhere you know.|
|6||To Kevin Magnussen||Understood Kev.|
|10||From Lewis Hamilton||Hamilton was stuck behind Verstappen.|
I can’t get past this guy.
|10||To Lewis Hamilton||OK Lewis you can just take it easy and we’ll extend the stint.|
|13||From Lewis Hamilton||There’s go to be another strategy, guys, I can’t be stuck behind this guy for ages.|
|13||To Lewis Hamilton||Yeah copy that Lewis we’ll try and go long on this stint.|
|15||From Kimi Raikkonen||Come on box me, my fronts are really suffering.|
|18||To Nico Rosberg||The race was stopped after Gutierrez and Alonso crashed.|
Red flag Nico, red flag.
|18||To Nico Rosberg||So you’ll be going into the pit lane and lining up.|
|18||To Daniel Ricciardo||OK so we’ll get a ten-minute notice so you can jump out.|
|19||To Esteban Gutierrez||Are you OK?|
|19||From Esteban Gutierrez||Oh, [Censored by FOM]. Yeah I’m OK. Is he OK?|
|19||To Esteban Gutierrez||Yeah Fernando is fine.|
|21||From Lewis Hamilton||A previous message involving Hulkenberg gives an indication of the type of problem Hamilton had.|
How do I turn the alarm off?
|21||To Lewis Hamilton||I’m afraid I can’t say, Lewis.|
|23||From Kimi Raikkonen||Something happened, I broke something.|
|23||To Kimi Raikkonen||OK understood Kimi, pull off where it’s safe.|
|28||To Marcus Ericsson||OK Marcus we have a drive-through penalty. Box this lap for a drive-through.|
|28||From Marcus Ericsson||What?|
|28||To Marcus Ericsson||It was for working on the car. There was a tyre blanket stuck and were trying to remove it.|
|28||From Marcus Ericsson||OK I’ll box this lap.|
|32||From Carlos Sainz Jnr||Sainz, who was running behind Verstappen, pitted before him which helped him get in front of his team mate.|
Guys we need to stop, stop.
|34||From Max Verstappen||This message indicates some earlier messages were not broadcast.|
How many times do I have to say I’ve got problems with my tyres? I wanted to pit first. [Censored by FOM]
|38||From Max Verstappen||Can I try to get past?|
|38||To Max Verstappen||Yes.|
|39||From Max Verstappen||Let me try because this takes too long.|
|39||To Max Verstappen||Let’s do it.|
|39||From Max Verstappen||Verstappen was stuck behind Sainz who had Palmer in front of him.|
Come on, we have to do something.
|40||To Carlos Sainz Jnr||OK Carlos, push.|
|40||From Carlos Sainz Jnr||I am pushing, don’t tell me to push.|
|40||To Carlos Sainz Jnr||Yes otherwise we will swap next lap.|
|41||From Marcus Ericsson||Broken down. Something broken in the rear drive.|
|41||To Marcus Ericsson||On the drivetrain, question?|
|41||From Marcus Ericsson||Yeah drivetrain is broken.|
|41||To Marcus Ericsson||Is the car still moving?|
|41||From Marcus Ericsson||Yeah.|
|47||To Max Verstappen||Sainz overtook Palmer, as did Verstappen.|
Always when I’m in front I’m pulling away, now you don’t let me past, it’s a [censored by FOM] joke, really.
|50||To Sergio Perez||Checo it’s time to push now.|
|51||To Sergio Perez||Checo your front brake wear is critical. You will not make it to the end like this.|
|54||From Max Verstappen||Verstappen spun and hit Sainz.|
I have front wing damage.
|55||From Sebastian Vettel||Vettel went off at turn 15 while chasing Hamilton for second place.|
[Censored by FOM]. Sorry guys.
|55||To Sebastian Vettel||No problem. Two laps to go.|
|VL||To Nico Rosberg||Yes! Well done, well done, good job.|
|VL||From Nico Rosberg||Yeah! Awesome guys, awesome. Thank you very much. Great start to the season.|
|VL||To Lewis Hamilton||Well done mate. That’s P2. Good recovery. Bad day at the office but well done mate.|
|VL||From Sebastian Vettel||Aagh.|
|VL||To Sebastian Vettel||P3.|
|VL||From Sebastian Vettel||Aagh. Sorry guys. As I got close obviously I started to slide a lot. I was trying to save the tyres as much as I could but got caught out.|
|VL||To Daniel Ricciardo||Nico job mate, excellent. Looked like you had fun today. [Part of message missing]|
|VL||To Daniel Ricciardo||Haas is sixth.|
|VL||From Daniel Ricciardo||Impressive. Good on them. And fastest lap? I guess I got it?|
|VL||To Daniel Ricciardo||I can confirm you did get the fastest lap of the race.|
|VL||From Daniel Ricciardo||Well that’s worth a drink.|
|VL||To Romain Grosjean||Chequered flag Romain, absolutely amazing dude!|
|VL||From Romain Grosjean||Guys, listen to me. This is a win for us. Unbelievable for everyone. I don’t even know where we finished! Unbelievable.|
|VL||To Romain Grosjean||Amazing, dude. You finished P6. Thanks for an amazing debut for Haas F1 team.|
|VL||From Romain Grosjean||Oh my goodness! Welcome to Formula One, Gene! This is the day. This is history, guys.|
|VL||To Romain Grosjean||Thank you brilliant mate, absolutely amazing job.|
|VL||From Romain Grosjean||Yeah fantastic for everyone. I don’t know how you did that job in such a little time. Well done everyone.|
|VL||To Romain Grosjean||Well done Romain, happy days. You’re the man.|
|VL||To Nico Hulkenberg||Well done Nico that was a great job, mate.|
|VL||From Nico Hulkenberg||Oh man that was painful. Jesus.|
|VL||To Valtteri Bottas||Very good recovery drive there after where we started. We finished P8.|
|VL||From Valtteri Bottas||Thanks guys good recovery but shame the overtaking was so difficult. Let’s try again in two weeks. Thankyou.|
|VL||From Max Verstappen||Unbelievable.|
|VL||To Max Verstappen||Yes. Not very good but…|
|VL||From Max Verstappen||I don’t understand why I was not the first one in the garage for another pit stop. It’s unbelievable. I really don’t understand. It’s a [censored by FOM] joke. Seriously.|
|VL||To Max Verstappen||We discuss later.|
|VL||To Jolyon Palmer||Well done Jo , P11, well done mate, that was a good race.|
|VL||From Jolyon Palmer||That’s frustrating, good job though.|
|VL||To Jolyon Palmer||It was close, good job.|
|VL||To Sergio Perez||Tough luck Checo, tough luck on that one that didn’t fall well for you.|
|VL||To Jenson Button||OK Jenson that is the chequered flag we finished P14.|
|VL||From Jenson Button||Yeah sorry guys but not my fault, we were the only people I think to get that wrong, so not good.|
|VL||To Jenson Button||Other cars have done similar things as well. We’ll go through it when you get out of the car.|
Lap: Refers to lap message was broadcast on. There may be a delay between messages being said and being broadcast. PR = pre-race; FL = formation lap; VL = victory lap.
Message: Repetitive or irrelevant messages omitted. Notes in italics. Highlights in bold.
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Australian Grand Prix data
- 2016 Australian Grand Prix tyre strategies and pit stops
- 2016 Australian Grand Prix lap charts
- 2016 Australian Grand Prix lap times and fastest laps
2016 Australian Grand Prix
- Elimination qualifying officially replaced by 2015 format
- Halo would have been “welcome” in crash – Alonso
- Alonso takes new power unit after crash
- Third Driver of the Weekend win for Grosjean
- F1 enjoys best season-opening race since 2009
Team radio transcripts
- ‘I can’t box?’: Hamilton and Verstappen’s 2021 Abu Dhabi GP radio transcript
- “Don’t fight Max”: How Red Bull’s team radio row in Brazil unfolded
- “Where is the rain?”: How Ferrari’s “split” strategy cost Leclerc in qualifying
- ‘I was in the fight, which hasn’t been often this year’: Ricciardo’s Mexican GP transcript
- “He’s gone off again”: Hamilton and Verstappen’s US GP battle on the radio