Turn two, Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez, 2017

Drivers given new rules on corner-cutting at Mexico’s turn one after 2016 row

2017 Mexican Grand Prix

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Drivers have been given new rules on respecting track limits at turn one at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez following the controversy during last year’s race.

Video: Hamilton, Rosberg and Verstappen’s corner-cutting
Max Verstappen was penalised for cutting the corner during last year’s race while racing Sebastian Vettel and was given a penalty which dropped him off the podium.

The two Mercedes drivers also went off at the same point on the track during the race and were not penalised. Lewis Hamilton, who cut the corner on the first lap, was accused by Nico Hulkenberg of gaining a “massive advantage”.

For this year’s race drivers must follow a prescribed route to rejoin the track if they run wide there. An additional part of the run-off at turns two and three has been covered with asphalt and speed bumps have been added to discourage drivers from cutting the corner.

Any driver who runs over the orange speed bumps or passes to the left of them or passes to the left of a bollard at the apex of turn two must rejoin the track by driving around the end of the orange kerbs between turns two and three.

Similar rules have also been put in place at turns eight and 11 where orange kerbs are being used to show how they should rejoin the track if they run wide. This approach has already been used at other tracks on the calendar include Monza and Singapore.

Verstappen was also penalised following last weekend’s United States Grand Prix due to a track limits violation.

2017 Mexican Grand Prix

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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  • 47 comments on “Drivers given new rules on corner-cutting at Mexico’s turn one after 2016 row”

    1. Consistency in ruling is needed.

    2. First of all I think track (itself) has to punish drivers (when drivers are out of track) not stewards. A “good track limit” is safe but slower than the track itself (for example bumps or grass or something else.)
      And secondly (of course) clear rules and consistency from stewards (during punishments) are important.

      1. I can hardly believe that there is no solution for punishing but safe runoff areas in the year 2017.

        1. gravel traps are save.

          1. Not, in case the car bounces on them and there is much less deceleration or you get a huge hit when landing. I think gravel traps are a thing of the past rather than the future.

            1. @f1mre, it’s also been pointed out that it makes things more hazardous for the marshals who then have to try and recover the cars from the gravel traps – though sadly it seems that few fans could care less about their safety.

            2. And in case of break failure the carreer in to a wall, where marshal’s need to recover the car. It is racing. Nothing is save

            3. Why not make an combo gravel/sand (rather sand) and grass while the last 5m asfalt?

          2. gravel traps are safe yes, but then everyone is here complaining about drivers being taken out of a race over a minor mistake and how the runoffs should be more forgiving. I’m convinced race fans just like to find something to complain about.

            1. What about a small strip of grass or gravel next to the racing line. Fuji springs to mind.

      2. “A “good track limit” is safe but slower than the track itself (for example bumps or grass or something else.)”

        But as Hamilton proved last year grass alone is not necessarily enough to make a shorter route slower.

        1. HAM wasn’t penalized therefor he did nothing illegal, Verstappen was so he did.

    3. Rules written in chalk.

      1. Not to mention the blindfolds being handed out…

    4. The track is only as wide as the white lines, anyone going off white line completely at ANY part of the track should be penalised for it or maybe warning 3 times and then a penalty, that is the consistency.
      I don’t agree with drivers allowed to go wide here and there on tracks as charlie see’s fit.

    5. I think the rule about track limits needs to start with respecting the rule: no part of the car should be over the line. It shouldn’t be that the whole car has to cross the line before a driver can be punished, the rule should be like a brick wall: once the tyre is on the line or any part of the car that is over it then it attracts the stewards attention.
      I wondered if it was possible to have different “time delay zones” at corners. So there’d be a series of lines receding from a corner, sort of like an onion. Each line representing an amount of time delay, e.g. half a second, one second, two seconds, 5 seconds, etc. Times being cumulative. If your wheel went onto or over a little bit over one of the lines then you’d get that much delay required before changing tyres or added to your time at the end of a race. This would mean the entire process can be automated. If it happens that a driver is forced off the track or there is a “racing incident” then the team have to argue with the stewards about it.

      1. I cannot se much difference between anything touching the white line from the inside or outside of the track. Also, your rule change would make kerbs unnecessary because kerbs are not part of the track.

        1. Well the outside of the white line is not part of the track. The inside is.

          1. Okay, but the idea was to say that anything between the white lines excluding the white lines is the track. Touching the white lines is not legal. There is no difference from a clear interpretation of the rules point of view between this and the current rule that says that until you are between the white lines or touching the white lines you are on the track, otherwise not.

            Both are crystal clear in 99% of the cases but currently the rules are not obeyed by and are not forced to be obeyed either.

    6. Why cant we just have a ZERO TOLERANCE like in Silverstone and Austria few years ago?

      1. @krichelle because the past has shown it’s really difficult for them to police it consistently, which brings a lot of other problems. Then there’s the issue with what happens when somebody does violate it. In qualifying you can invalidate a lap time, but in the race it’s substantially more difficult.

        Plus a lot of fans and drivers alike don’t like having the stewards intervening all the time. It’s much better to have a physical deterrent and a black and white rule

      2. Because that was incredibly annoying as well. We want to see the drivers drive their cars on the edge. They can not do that if they get punished for moving 1mm over that edge.

    7. ”Any driver who runs over the orange speed bumps or passes to the left of them or passes to the left of a bollard at the apex of turn two must rejoin the track by driving around the end of the orange kerbs between turns two and three.” – Sounds good. This time around it’s guaranteed that if anyone does the same as Hamilton and Verstappen, they will lose time and possibly a position rather than gain any potential advantage.

    8. I have been thinking about run-off areas a bit more since Verstappen last incident. I have never liked them in the current form, I like the old school of grass and gravel, any driver venturing outside of the track would definitely lose places in the old days (unless he was really far ahead).
      Can they make the run-off areas in off camber and keep tarmac for the sake of safety? Do you think making them in negative camber would affect drivers time?

      1. The can keep tarmac for safety. But only always limited with grass or if there is a change of advantage limited by gravel. (On always has to drive through grass or gravel to get back on track)
        Also always gravel on the inside off curves, riding the curbs ok getting past them gravel.

    9. You Go Shave-z
      26th October 2017, 18:55

      So a new Verstappen rule !

      What about the ‘you must give position back and can’t attempt an overtake until after another corner’ rule at they imposed on Hamilton

      1. Racing happens between the white lines is already in the rulebook.

        1. Michael Brown (@)
          27th October 2017, 1:13

          Except we saw other drivers going beyond the white lines to race, like Bottas.

      2. “You know you are good when your sport keeps changing the rules just to make it harder for you” Barack Obama 2015

        He was talking about Michael Jordan, but yeah same applies to Max I guess !

        1. Well, let’s hope its not Vettel again to be the first one to receive a penalty.

    10. The way it is worded, it doesn’t sound like it would prevent what Hamilton did. But let’s see, maybe I’m not getting a clear picture of it just by reading it.

    11. they will soon get shot of that, cars will take off if they run wide.

      1. That’s what I was thinking, that part doesn’t seem so well thought-out

        1. I’ve found another picture from a Force India tweet.

          That looks like it could easily flick loose debris, such as a broken front wing, up into the air. When the FIA are so keen on safety, this doesn’t seem right

    12. Drivers given new rules on corner-cutting

      Lets refrase that;
      Stewards given new instructions on corner-cutting Be consistent for all drivers and situations.

    13. It’s definitely a massive improvement on last year, and it’s great to have some clear and consistent ruling.

      That said, I do find it very wordy (– is that the official wording, Keith?). It would be a lot easier for them to say, “any driver who does not pass to the right of the bollard in turn 2, must go around the end of the orange speed bumps”, or something to that effect.

      I still maintain that nothing will beat walls and gravel, though.

      1. Just another thought, what’s the punishment for a driver who doesn’t go around the speed bumps? A 5 or even 10 second time penalty isn’t enough if they hold or gain position when they should lose one. It’s wishful thinking but I think a slam-dunk drive through should be the answer

        1. Michael Brown (@)
          27th October 2017, 1:16

          @strontium Drive-throughs used to be the answer. If the 5 second penalty existed in 2010, Alonso could have cut a corner to pass Petrov and create a gap of at least 5 seconds to win the championship.

          1. Assuming passing petrov was enough for the title, which it wasn’t!

            1. Indeed, he needed 4th place, so would have had to pass Rosberg and Kubica as well.

    14. Michael Brown (@)
      27th October 2017, 1:17

      Turn 1 should just connect directly to turn 4. Why does there have to be a Catalunya-style chicane? That doesn’t ever work for racing.

    15. They have to write two sets of rules – one for VET, VER and HAM – and one for the rest…and the first rule set could be a onepager saying everything is allowed – much easier

    16. I think it should be like DRS deployment. Each driver gets to make their own track limits at two corners per lap. Maybe Liberty/FIA could even introduce an dirt track section in each of the parking lot circuits

    17. Pretty sure that the V8 Supercars have sensors that pick up overuse of kerbs and/or cuts. Drivers get some lenience and then the bad sportsmanship flag prior to a penalty.
      I still think the case where you overtake another driver needs to be treated differently though.

    18. I remember Charlie Whiting explaining that Lewis wasn’t penalised in Mexico – as opposed to Max – because it was the first lap and he lifted afterwards to give back the unfair advantage.
      Makes you wonder: what would the outcome of last year’s race have been if those speed bumps had already been in place? Will those speed bumps only come up after lap one?
      Another thing: every driver is supposed to know full well corner cutting is illegal, so why have speed bumps in the first place?
      And come to think of it: wouldn’t it have been nice if every driver that left the track in Austin on the outside exit of a corner had lifted like Lewis did last year in order to ‘give back’ the advantage gained? What would the outcome of that race have been then?

    Comments are closed.