Remember the GPDA? The Grand Prix Driver’s Association? Yeah, it’s still a thing and Romain Grosjean is the director and they are all going to meet in Brazil to discuss issues they have regarding tires and racing in general.
The tires were a real impact on the Mexican Grand Prix and the field was lapped up to 4th place. These issues have prompted frustration with some drivers and they are set to convene in Brazil to discuss it.
“I don’t think anyone ever seems to be satisfied,” said Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo.
“They wanted a tire we can race harder for longer, and I feel we’re nearly getting that.
“But I don’t know how to have a tire we can push hard on but is going to degrade, so we can still do a two or three-stop.”
Tires are one thing but Grosjean thinks there more to the serious issues Formula 1 is facing from a competitive standpoint.
“It’s not only tires,” said Grosjean.
“I don’t want to speak for everyone else, but I feel like we need to give our feedback and maybe try to do a bit more because the races aren’t fun.
“P6 in Mexico is two laps down? How do you hope to see a midfield car on the podium if they are one or two laps down?
“The delta between the big teams and the small teams is too big.
“Plus the tires being so complicated to understand, to drive, if you don’t have the downforce you destroy them and you open the gap again.”
It’s an interesting point about not enough downforce versus too much and this narrow window having a big impact on the tires. The situation has left me cold since introducing the concept of HD tires several years ago.
The idea, for me, is that F1 should be flat out as a sprint race and today’s racing is all about conservation, lift and coast and tire preservation. Perhaps some fans like that kind of strategic challenge but the adverse impact is not helping.
So what will the GPDA do with their discussions?
“If we get to somewhere where everyone is happy with what we have discussed, then we should move them forward to you guys, to Liberty or whoever,” said Grosjean.
“[It’s important] we don’t sit back and don’t do anything for the sport we love.”
These are usually political positioning statements and I’ve not heard or read of many immediate reactions to a GPDA memorandum on the state of F1. Perhaps new owners, Liberty Media, will listen?
Hat Tip: Autosport