Lingering German GP controversies

The talking points from the German Grand Prix on Monday continues to be the incident between Williams F1 driver Felipe Massa and McLaren rookie, Kevin Magnussen. Mass continues to heap blame on the young driver for their clash and uses the occasion to warn other young drivers to calm down:

“Honestly I don’t remember in the past that this type of accident happening all the time,” he said.

“I was young and I even crashed many times, but I don’t remember following different rules to the ones we have.

“I don’t remember myself, Kimi [Raikkonen], Fernando [Alonso], being involved as young drivers in so many things like that.

“But anyway, it is just the way I think: I am not saying the young drivers don’t have the talent to be in F1, it is very good talent.

“But sometimes you need to understand that you cannot win the race at the first corner.”

In other news, there are some continuing conversation over the lack of a safety car when Sauber’s Adrian Sutil stalled his car on the front straight on lap 48. Lewis Hamilton was concerned for the safety of track workers:

“I was really concerned for the marshals, really concerned,” said Hamilton. “You come around that corner at serious speed, and then there are marshals standing not far from where you are driving past. For me that is the closest it has been for a long, long time.”

Some have accused Hamilton of simply calling for the safety car so he could close up Nico Rosberg’s lead and have a shot at the teammate. Sure, who wouldn’t want that kind of situation? But that may not be the most important thing. Even Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso, who would have suffered had a safety car appeared, said it would have been the right call:

“But being objective and honest, probably we were expecting a safety car in a normal situation. Sometimes they put the safety car out for a piece of front wing on the track and now it was a car there and it was not a safety car.

“It was a surprise. But if they didn’t put it out it was because they felt it was not a risk and they removed the car in a safe manner – I hope, I didn’t see it – and that was it.”

Track marshals ran across a live track in order to remove the car and if I’m honest, I thought it was a bit dangerous and like Alonso, I was waiting for the safety car call too.

There is also the issue of changed brakes at Mercedes that has a few teams questioning the legality of the move. Lewis Hamilton suffered brake failure during qualifying and the team took the opportunity to change brake manufacturers for Sunday’s race. The FIA deemed it a non-issue but Red Bull’s Christian Horner doesn’t quite see it that way:

“It is a change of car specification,” said Horner.

“If you change it like for like that is one thing, but if you change it for something that is made by a different manufacturer that has a different characteristic, as described by the driver himself as something different, then it is an interesting precedent.”

“That is why we need a clarification because obviously if you can do that, then what else can you change? It will be interesting to see what the justification of that allowance was.”

The cars were all in Parc Ferme condition and changing a part does seem to be against the regulations but it would have been down to the race stewards and apparently they felt it was not a big deal. Ferrari also considered protesting the change.

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