Lauda, teams want less FIA interference

Jul.30 (GMM) F1’s top teams are pleading with race director Charlie Whiting to ease his stance when it comes to ‘track limits’.

In Thursday’s Strategy Group meeting, officials for Mercedes, Ferrari and Red Bull thought they had made progress when it comes to not always penalising drivers for simply putting wheels over the lined extremities of the track.

But then in Friday practice at Hockenheim, the FIA’s Whiting was once again strictly enforcing so-called ‘track limits’.

“We all asked Charlie to stop this thing of punishing a driver for being a few centimetres over a line,” F1 legend and Mercedes team chairman Niki Lauda told Brazil’s Globo Esporte.

“We said seeing drivers pushing is spectacular and good for F1. Charlie said he didn’t agree but would meet our request, but it wasn’t true,” he added.

Indeed, there are suggestions other top teams are similarly losing patience with the ever strict and constantly changing rules of F1, with Ferrari and Red Bull also backing Lauda and Mercedes.

“We need to end this ‘under investigation’ for every moment we see,” said Lauda. “Like the stupid situation in Budapest, where six hours after qualifying we didn’t know if Nico (Rosberg) was really on pole.

“How do we explain all this to the viewer? It’s crazy.

“F1 needs more easily understood rules so that what people watch on TV corresponds to reality. We can no longer keep changing the outcome as we go.

“It’s a serious mistake,” Lauda insisted.

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