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Saturday, January 22, 2022

Gravel traps would have solved Verstappen/Hamilton incident

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In Sunday’s gripping grand prix at Interlagos Verstappen tried every little thing he might to maintain the sooner Mercedes of Hamilton at bay because the pair continued its hard-fought 2021 title battle, which is ready to go all the way down to the wire.

On lap 48 Verstappen pushed Hamilton off the monitor at Flip 4 because the Briton tried a go across the outdoors. The pair each took to the painted run-off space earlier than rejoining the monitor at pace.

The incident was famous by race management however not investigated, a non-call which sparked controversy as related incidents have been beforehand punished with a five-second penalty, most notably Lando Norris’ defensive transfer on Sergio Perez in Austria.

Mercedes has nonetheless since called for a review of the incident now onboard footage from Verstappen’s automotive has been launched.    

Ferrari’s Sainz, who additionally used the Flip 4 run-off space on a scrappy first lap, believes the entire ordeal might have been prevented by putting in gravel traps as an alternative of Interlagos’ tarmac run-offs.

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Monitor view

Picture by: Jerry Andre / Motorsport Images

“I personally assume that this concern can be solved with a gravel entice on the exit of Flip 4,” mentioned Sainz, who completed sixth in final Sunday’s race.

“I feel you additionally noticed initially right this moment a number of automobiles – together with ourselves – going extensive in Flip 4. If there had been a gravel entice, we would not have gone there.

“And as an alternative of truly it being a difficulty for the stewards, for those who put a gravel entice there, it would not be a difficulty for the stewards, for Michael [Masi, FIA race director], for Lewis, for Max or for us.”

Sainz’ plea for gravel is a part of a recurring theme over the previous years as F1 has struggled to police monitor limits in a constant method. The Spaniard hopes that modifications could be made to Interlagos, significantly for the reason that monitor does not should accommodate MotoGP bikes.

“We hold asking for gravel traps,” he added. “And we hope that sooner or later, particularly at a monitor like Sao Paulo, the place MotoGP is just not operating, we wish to see gravel traps again as a result of we might by no means brake so late into Flip 4.”

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