Formula 1 race director Michael Masi insists there is nothing wrong with the drag strip run-off area at Hockenheim, following a number of incidents at the German Grand Prix.

Charles Leclerc branded the run-off as “unacceptable” after the Ferrari driver crashed out of the race at the penultimate corner, having skated off the circuit in wet conditions.

Erstwhile race-leader Lewis Hamilton followed him off into the same section of run off moments later, but was able to recollect his Mercedes car despite a hit with the barriers.

They were among several drivers, including Nico Hulkenberg, Carlos Sainz and Kimi Raikkonen, to have incidents in the final sequence of corners after running wide.

“The drag strip looks fine,” said Masi after the race. “We inspected it the other day and had a look again post-race with the water on it. It is fine.

“Even Sebastian [Vettel] is quoted as saying that it is normally one of the grippiest parts of the track and it is no different to any of the other painted run-off, to be quite honest.

“I think it was one of those ones where if you put water on painted run-off then, as much as you can do anything to make sure it is anti slip paint, it is still more slippery than unpainted tarmac.”

Asked whether the FIA’s advice for drivers was to stay off the portion of run-off, Masi replied: “Correct. It is called track limits controls!”

McLaren’s Lando Norris admitted he feared having a crash en route to the starting grid after testing out the Turn 16 run-off prior to the race.

Despite facing a number of complaints, Masi says all 20 drivers are in agreement that there should be some form of punishment for running off circuit.

“They may claim it is too dangerous but from our end, using Austria as the example, the drivers were all quite pleased with it, even with the bumps and that,” he added.

“It punishes them for making mistakes and it was very similar here. It’s one of those sorts of venues.

“We saw the other implementation we had to do regarding Turn 1 with the track limits side. You are balancing it to a degree, but credit where it is due, all 20 drivers have been very consistent in their views that if they run off the track there should be consequences for doing it.

“Maybe straight after the race they might have a different view with the way it has affected them but sitting down with them individually and as a group, that has been their consistent view and it hasn’t changed.”

 

Comments

Loading Comments...