Vital F1 - 'clarification' on defensive driving guidelines
Vital Login
Social Login

Other Sites

Network Navigation

Vital Partners

'If It's F1, It's Vital'

'clarification' on defensive driving guidelines

Back in January the FIA announced a tweak to how drivers could defend their position on the track.

It had been thought that the tweak would prevent drivers who make a move to defend their position away from the racing line, to return to it, thus blocking the attacking driver twice.

This scenario was seen multiple times during the course of the 2011 season and it was always going to be interesting to see how it would be enforced by the race stewards during the 2012 season and whether the advantage would now be handed to the attacking driver.

Well with the new season at its half way point, we've had a number of incidents which has meant that this rule has come under the spotlight.

In Bahrain Nico Rosberg, took a very aggressive approach towards defending his position against Lewis Hamilton, so much so that the Mercedes driver actually put two wheels off the track while the McLaren was alongside him.

The German was then under investigation for his defensive moves while attempting to keep the Ferrari of Fernando Alonso behind him later on in the same race.

The race stewards eventually sided with Rosberg, but calls were being made for clarification on the guidelines by the drivers, with Alonso making sarcastic tweets about the stewards decision.

In Valencia, Maldonado was punished for crashing into Lewis Hamilton in the closing stages of the race. The Williams driver attempted to blame the McLaren driver for pushing him off the track, but the stewards didn't agree and gave Maldonado a post-race time penalty.

While most agreed with the stewards decision, some Formula One journalists could see the point Maldonado was making in regards to the current regulations.

So before the British Grand Prix at Silverstone, FIA race director Charlie Whiting wrote to all the teams to clarify their position.

Autosport Magazine have managed to obtain a copy of this letter and have quoted parts of the letter in a recent article on their website.

'any driver defending his position on a straight and before any braking area may use the full width of the track during his first move provided no significant portion of the car attempting to pass is alongside his. Whilst defending in this way the driver may not leave the track without justifiable reason.'

It continued: 'For the avoidance of doubt, if any part of the front wing of the car attempting to pass is alongside the rear wheel of the car in front this will be deemed to be a 'significant portion'.'

Now this wouldn't appear to avoid doubt at all, just by looking at the incidents involving Rosberg and Hamilton in Bahrain and Hamilton and Maldonado in Valencia, you could still interpret the moves differently.

In Bahrain, Hamilton would have had a 'significant portion' of his car alongside Rosberg before the Mercedes used the full width of the road, so that would now lay blame on Rosberg.

In Valencia, despite the fact that Maldonado had put his car on the outside of the turn, he too would have had a 'significant portion' of his car alongside Hamilton, simply because he broke later than the McLaren. He then remained alongside him going into the chicane because he didn't attempt to take the initial turn and left the track.

So where does blame sit in this incident? Does it still sit with Maldonado for leaving the circuit and failing to rejoin the track in a safe manner or is Hamilton now to blame because the Brit didn't leave him enough of the track to take the corner?








Join Vital F1

It's easy to join up and join in on VitalF1.com, simply click the link and enjoy getting involved!

If you are already a member of Vital Football, your logins will automatically work on VitalF1.com!

The Journalist

Writer: Red5 Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Friday July 13 2012

Time: 10:00AM

 

Have Your Say

Log in...
with your social network     OR     with your Vital account

Recent Vital F1 Articles

Blog: Monaco GP Report (Monday May 25 2015)

2015 - Monaco GP - Race (Sunday May 24 2015)

Blog: Monaco Qualifying (Sunday May 24 2015)

2015 - Monaco GP - Qualifying (Saturday May 23 2015)

2015 - Monaco GP - FP3 (Saturday May 23 2015)

2015 - Monaco GP - FP2 (Thursday May 21 2015)

2015 - Monaco GP - FP1 (Thursday May 21 2015)

Hamilton at home with Mercedes (Wednesday May 20 2015)

Hamilton targets Monaco victory (Wednesday May 20 2015)

Blog: Monaco Preview (Wednesday May 20 2015)

Alonso targets Monaco points (Tuesday May 19 2015)

Who will win in Monaco? (Monday May 18 2015)

Horner spices up his life (Monday May 18 2015)

Button scared of his McLaren Honda (Thursday May 14 2015)

Blog: Spanish GP Report (Monday May 11 2015)

2015 - Spain GP - Race (Sunday May 10 2015)

Blog: Barcelona Qualifying (Saturday May 9 2015)

2015 - Spain GP - Qualifying (Saturday May 9 2015)

2015 - Spain GP - FP3 (Saturday May 9 2015)

2015 - Spain GP - FP2 (Friday May 8 2015)

2015 - Spain GP - FP1 (Friday May 8 2015)

F1 merry-go-round (Friday May 8 2015)

Mercedes and Ferrari on par (Thursday May 7 2015)

McLaren to change livery in Spain (Wednesday May 6 2015)

Blog: Barcelona Preview (Wednesday May 6 2015)

Who will reign in Spain? (Wednesday May 6 2015)

No retirement for Frank Williams (Wednesday April 29 2015)

Williams hopeful over upgrade (Monday April 27 2015)

Ferrari to take another step forward (Wednesday April 22 2015)

Ferrari to keep Kimi waiting (Tuesday April 21 2015)

Blog: Bahrain GP Report (Monday April 20 2015)

2015 - Bahrain GP - Race (Sunday April 19 2015)

Blog: Sakhir Qualifying (Saturday April 18 2015)

2015 - Bahrain GP - Qualifying (Saturday April 18 2015)

2015 - Bahrain GP - FP3 (Saturday April 18 2015)

2015 - Bahrain GP - FP2 (Friday April 17 2015)

2015 - Bahrain GP - FP1 (Friday April 17 2015)

Rosberg hits reset button (Thursday April 16 2015)

Blog: Sakhir Preview (Thursday April 16 2015)

Merc set for team-orders? (Wednesday April 15 2015)

Ferrari can win the title says Kimi (Wednesday April 15 2015)

Who will win in Bahrain? (Tuesday April 14 2015)

Blog: Chinese GP Report (Sunday April 12 2015)

2015 - China GP - Race (Sunday April 12 2015)

Blog: Shanghai Qualifying (Saturday April 11 2015)

2015 - China GP - Qualifying (Saturday April 11 2015)

2015 - China GP - FP3 (Saturday April 11 2015)

2015 - China GP - FP2 (Friday April 10 2015)

2015 - China GP - FP1 (Friday April 10 2015)

Blog: Shanghai Preview (Wednesday April 8 2015)

Points will flow for Lotus? (Tuesday April 7 2015)

Who will win in China? (Tuesday April 7 2015)

Manor Marussia on track to recovery (Thursday April 2 2015)

Audio: Post Malaysia (Wednesday April 1 2015)

All options open for Renault (Tuesday March 31 2015)

Blog: Malaysian GP Report (Monday March 30 2015)

2015 - Mal GP - Race (Sunday March 29 2015)

Archived Vital F1 Articles

List All Vital F1 Articles
Have your say
Click here to suggest an article
Click here to suggest a poll

Vital Members League (view all)

1. Red5 1052
2. DJ 954
3. The Fear 771
4. Villaininthemerde 612
5. johnkelv 583
6. Druss_the_Legend 537
7. Push The Button 455
8. col8 334
9. The Intimidator 161
10. __villa__ 145

Current Site Poll (view all polls)

Who will win the Canadian GP?
Hamilton 52%
Rosberg 0%
Vettel 12%
Raikkonen 12%
Bottas 12%
Massa 0%
Someone else 12%