F1 team principals and the FIA meet to discuss the Italian GP safety car topic.

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By Creative Media News

Monday’s summit meeting between senior Formula One team managers and FIA president Mohammed Ben Sulayem will focus on the controversial conclusion of Sunday’s Italian Grand Prix. Numerous team principals were displeased with how the race concluded behind the safety car and say the FIA must amend its regulations to prevent a recurrence.

Max Verstappen won the race at Monza despite taking the checkered flag behind the safety car. Daniel Ricciardo’s McLaren stopped on the track with five circuits remaining, prompting its deployment. Insufficient circuits were remaining to remove it, close up the cars, and allow the safety car to complete its two mandated laps, all of which were required by the regulations for the race to resume.

F1 team principals and the fia meet to discuss the italian gp safety car topic.
F1 team principals and the fia meet to discuss the italian gp safety car topic.

The FIA had already called the Formula One World Championship sporting conference for Monza on Monday, but now Sunday’s festivities will take precedence. The FIA was not at fault because it adhered to its regulations. This in itself was a sore spot for many after the contentious ending of last year’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, which cost Lewis Hamilton a potential eighth title, when FIA race director Michael Masi innovated on the rules to assure a final lap of racing after a late safety car.

Racing car
F1 team principals and the fia meet to discuss the italian gp safety car topic.

Christian Horner, the team principal for Verstappen’s Red Bull team, was adamant that the sport should avoid ending races behind the safety car and that the FIA must fix the issue immediately.

“There are lessons to be learned; this goes against everything we’ve discussed,” he remarked. “It is unfavorable to complete races under caution; if they had known they couldn’t get it running, they should have thrown the red flag and restarted the race. On Monday, the entire group of team managers will be seated. I am certain that this will be at the top of the agenda given that the president is also involved.

Mattia Binotto, the team principal for Ferrari, also criticized the FIA’s decision, while Toto Wolff, Lewis Hamilton’s team principal at Mercedes, bluntly remarked that at least this time the FIA had obeyed its own rules.

“I’m particularly pleased to see that the race director and his colleagues enforce the rules despite the pressure from the media, the spectators, and everyone else to simply violate the rules,” he remarked. Therefore, Abu Dhabi provided the FIA with greater confidence in its ability to enforce regulations.

However, he agreed that F1 needed to find a better approach to ensure races ended under racing circumstances, so long as the rules, which will undoubtedly be discussed at the summit, were properly adhered to.

“I think we should all sit down and see whether there is something we can do better, but what occurred on Sunday is in the rulebook, and that is why it was applied,” he said. “Would I have desired a final lap with cars stacked on top of one another at the chicane? Hell yes, good TV.”

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