Max Verstappen, Valtteri Bottas, Monza, 2018

F1 penalties were “all over the place” in 2018 – Verstappen

RaceFans Round-up

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In the round-up: Max Verstappen says penalties in Formula 1 were too inconsistent this year.

What they say

Verstappen was asked whether he still disagreed with the five-second penalty he was given for failing to leave Valtteri Bottas enough space when they tangled during the Italian Grand Prix:

For me to be honest I think it was still unfair because I did leave him a car’s width. I think it happened the year before as well with Felipe and his team mate at the time.

I think penalties in general the whole season have been a bit all over the place. Sometimes yes, sometimes not.

Of course looking back at it I could have braked a bit straighter instead of going to the left but when you’re in the car it’s really difficult to judge that when you arrive at 300 [kph]. But for those moments for sure next time I’ll leave a bit more space just to be safe. But I’m also there to race hard I’m not there to give up my podium position.

Quotes: Dieter Rencken

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Comment of the day

Was Lewis Hamilton right to say he’s aiming to become F1’s all-time greatest driver?

I’m not sure I’d admit that if I were him, it invites all sorts of impossible direct comparisons and pointless debates, in my opinion, and gives his opponents an extra incentive to help derail his ambitions.

But I appreciate where he’s coming from and his approach in trying to achieve his goal: seeking to eliminate weaknesses in himself, and inviting criticism to help identify where those weaknesses might be. It’s funny how one of the biggest criticisms Lewis has gotten through the years has been his “inconsistency”, but by the numbers, none of his peers are remotely as consistent.

Also, it’s crazy to think that all it would have taken to be equal with Schumacher on titles already would have been a few more brain cells on the McLaren pit wall in 2007 and a reliable engine in Malaysia 2016.

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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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  • 42 comments on “F1 penalties were “all over the place” in 2018 – Verstappen”

    1. The FIA accident study Autosport quoted is clearly up to its usual highly-technical standard. I can think of few other contexts where anyone would bother differentiating between the helmet (by which they’d be meaning the carbon fibre “body” of the object that usually gets called a helmet) and its visor (the transparent part that tends also to get lumped into the popular concept of “helmet”, at least for this variety).

      1. i’m still trying to wrap my braincells around the concept of yaw relative to another car and how this would have been modelled….

      2. @alianora-la-canta I think that, after Massa’s incident with the loose spring, many people realized that visors are way weaker than the rest of the helmet. That quote just highlights it: it’s not just that the halo would prevent a loose wheel from hitting a driver’s head; it also prevented a sharp part of the car (the wing) from contacting the weakest part of a helmet.

    2. Of course the penalties we’re “all over the place”. F1 stops in cities all over the world, and Verstappen had incidents in many of them.

      1. I thought about making a snarky comment about Max’ penalty complaints, but this beats whatever I was gonna come up with. LOL!

      2. Very good one mate, LOL.

      3. LOL Got a good laugh out of that one – spot on!

      4. Nice, so you agree with max ;)

    3. Great response @SLOTOPEN, LOL

    4. If you lay Monza 2018 Bottas-Verstappen and Monza 2008 Webber-Hamilton side by side it is hard to explain how Max got a penalty while Lewis did not.

      And Lewis was the victim of the likewise incident with Button in Canada 2011, where Jenson did not get a penalty for, even though it ended Lewis’s race.

      Things like these were fully acceptable… until Max did it.

      1. The difference is that 10 years had past since then. The regulations on wheel-to-wheel battles has changed. There are numerous examples of drivers who have gotten penalties for not leaving a car’s width on the outside of a corner. Examples just off the top of my head are Grosjean in Hungary 2013 and Sutil in Silverstone 2013. I don’t get the need to keep justifying why Max doesn’t deserve penalties, especially when it’s as clear cut as in Monza. That was a slam dunk penalty, that broke the rules put in place.

        1. @Mashiat “There are numerous examples of drivers who have gotten penalties for not leaving a car’s width on the outside of a corner.”

          yeah, except Max did leave enough room. Bottas refused to use the green that everybody -including himself- uses all the time.

          1. That’s the point. Every driver uses that patch every lap if they get the chance, yet when trying to overtake Max on the outside (which was pretty chanceless anyway) Valtteri decided to take a tighter line?

            Webber got a whack when he was full on the green stuff, right to the edge. That is different, that could have been penalized.

            I’d like to see a statistic showing which stewards gave which drivers penalty points. That would be quite revealing.

      2. And as for Canada 2011, that was 100% a penalty in the dry. But visibility was so poor, that the stewards took that into account.

      3. Had Verstappen caused that incident in 2008, then he would not have received a penalty either!

        Until the age of 15 they would hold the parents responsible ;)

        1. What if the parents are irresponsible? 🤔

          1. @phylyp: Then they’d need a note from Charlie.

      4. Good examples. The consistency of the stewarding in F1 is awful and really needs to be addressed.

        I find it weird that all stones are turned to make F1 as good a show as possible, and then there are these hair-pulling inconstent rulings that define races (and possibly championship) and borders on putting the sport in disrepute which I believe is a rule break even FIA and FOM could be charged with (Concorde).

    5. From 2010-2013, the FIA was constantly looking for ways to ban devices and aerodynamics bits that any of the front runners (especially Red Bull) in order to keep the field close. And it worked to a certain extent. However, since 2014, they seem to have completely abandoned this. Given how dominant Mercedes was in 2014-2016, I’m surprised they didn’t outlaw something on the PU or the aerodynamics to limit their potential. Could this be because they have realized that it was wrong? Just a random thought that has occured to me. (I could just be completely wrong and have a poor memory).

      1. @mashiat, or maybe it is because people seem to keep trying to find a single magic solution to everything when no such magic solution exists.

        It is not just one single item that made them dominant, but a wide range of things – a car that, as a whole, is well executed, combined with a strong team that has strength in depth and works together co-operatively. You might say “I’m surprised they didn’t outlaw something on the PU or the aerodynamics to limit their potential”, but I would say that the reason is simple – there hasn’t been one single thing that you can point at in that fashion and say “that is what must be making them so exceptional” in that way.

        1. That is true, some very good points. I was thinking back to how every week, it seemed that there was talk of the FIA banning a certain aerodynamic device from the top teams. Anything innovative was basically outlawed for the following season. F-ducts, double diffusers, double DRS, the exhausts, all of these had changes in regulations the moment they became an important part of the aerodynamics. It even got to the point that Newey became less interested in the sport.

    6. When I read the autosport Leclerc article earlier it had this image included.
      The Halo seems cracked!

      How can they say that it was not damaged and that it can withstand double the impact.

      1. Ben Rowe (@thegianthogweed)
        7th December 2018, 7:29

        I’m not sure if that is the actual part that matters that is damaged. Surely there is more inside it. Maybe they meant that bit isn’t damaged. In that case, it could well withstand more.

        1. @thegianthogweed, you are correct about that – what @coldfly is seeing in that image is superficial damage to the external aerodynamic housing that is fitted to the halo, not the internal load bearing structure. That housing will crack like that because it is just a thin skin of carbon fibre, but the internal load bearing structure, being made from titanium, will not crack in that way.

      2. @coldfly I’m not sure about how the Halo is built, maybe that’s just a carbon fiber layer for aerodynamic purposes? If I recall correctly, the Halo itself is titanium built.

          1. Thanks @thegianthogweed, @warheart, @kaiie, and anonomous guy (please register so I can properly address you).
            I knew I could rely on the community to give me the answers.

      3. The article (and the FIA report) states that the Halo remained “structurally intact”. The damage you see is just superficial.

    7. F1 penalties were “all over the place” in 2018 – Verstappen

      Well to be fair so where you.

      1. Hahaha Max could take that as a compliment;-)

      2. That’s why Brazil 2016 was so beautiful ;)

    8. I can see his point although I still don’t necessarily agree with him that the penalties were ‘all over the place.’

      PETA. The first thing that came to my mind when I first came up with the tweet was one SP season 8 episode, LOL.

      “Nowadays with the DRS you get within a second, you’re going to drive past.”
      – That isn’t the case most of the time these days, though, far from it as I’ve pointed out before.

      That’s a fascinating column by Grosjean. A couple of things from it:
      A Swiss Indiana Jones, LOL, and the other being this, and it is something that baffles me a bit. How is 24 too old for a cooking school, LOL? Not that I’d want to, but If I wanted then I guess I’d have to do it now as I only have less than four and half months left before I reach 24 myself.

      1. He talks in depth about it in the beyond the grid interview he did this year, a quite fascinating interview btw. @jerejj

    9. About everybody complains about the lack of overtaking during races, but if somebody does 50% chance he will get a penalty. It is difficult so there are risks involved, take no risk and just cruise around or go for it. Stop these onexplainable penalties.

    10. In response to the COTD, it is a good point that with a few small changes, HAM could be on 7 titles already. However, if you change the first thing—more support and better decisions at Mclaren—then all of the titles with Merc may have never come. If Mclaren had made better decisions (in hindsight admittedly) and got HAM the 07 title along with the 08, and had played nicer (giving drivers trophies and whatnot), it at least makes the move to Merc more suspect.

      1. That’s a great argument, tbh. I’ll concede that.

    11. We don’t need all this PC stuff. Just let em race FFS

    Comments are closed.