Site logo

Mansell hits out at F1 rules

NEWS STORY
22/10/2015

Not for nothing was Nigel Mansell known as Il Leone by the tifosi, the Briton proving as hard-nosed and determined in a Ferrari as he had been in the Lotus and Williams.

Though his out-of-cockpit persona left a lot to be desired, many in the paddock still suffering the after effects of the whine seemingly forever emanating from his garage, once behind the wheel there were none braver, none more exciting.

Nowadays, the Briton is clearly more at ease with himself and the world, including F1; as well as attending numerous races as a steward, he has built a loyal following on Twitter with his insightful, passionate and intelligent thoughts.

Never backward in sharing his opinion, ahead of this weekend's United States Grand Prix, the Briton has voiced his opinion on the current states of F1, and like many he is not happy.

"They must change the rules, and I've been saying that for years," he told Gazzetta dello Sport. "In my era you were lucky if you had three engineers, while there are thirty in the pit box at this time. Tires were wider, but we still slipped around corners which allowed a driver to show their style.

"Today the cars are easy to drive, as the pit wall tells you everything all the time and the drivers aren't able to show their abilities," he added. "If you are aggressive, you wear out the tyres, therefore you must go slower. And things like the DRS are madness: what skill is there in passing in that manner?"

Another aspect of contemporary F1 that rankles Mansell is the reliance on simulators. Indeed, whilst impressed by rookie Max Verstappen, the Briton feels that the manner in which he has become so competitive, so young and so quickly, is indicative of the direction F1 is heading.

"It is clear he has talent, but he is the perfect example of how drivers evolve today. It's surprising to see him so fast on tracks he has never been on before, but that is thanks to the simulators. He doesn't need to know the car, as the engineers take care of that.

"He also has one less thing to worry about thanks to improved safety. His accident in Monaco would have cost him in the past, as many others have had to retire after similar incidents."

Asked which driver, Hamilton, Vettel or Alonso is best, Mansell replies: "They are three great drivers. I would like to see them in the same car to find that out.

"Lewis has a great team, wins with little trouble and that is why everything is easy for him. He is enjoying himself and is relaxed. Like Sir Jackie Stewart said, he is racing on a red carpet.

"More competition, and a Ferrari that is closer in performance to Mercedes, is needed, so that things would be like my era when Senna, Prost, Piquet and I were always fighting."

Check out our Thursday gallery, here.

LATEST NEWS

more news >

RELATED ARTICLES

LATEST IMAGES

galleries >

  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • Pitpass.com latest F1/Formula 1 images

POST A COMMENT

or Register for a Pitpass ID to have your say

Please note that all posts are reactively moderated and must adhere to the site's posting rules and etiquette.

Post your comment

READERS COMMENTS

 

1. Posted by karel, 02/11/2015 11:15

"dear Big 5, I agree for more then 100 % , nice to hear this from a racing legend of the good old days"

Rating: Neutral (0)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

2. Posted by ryanhellyer, 24/10/2015 18:35

"As far as pit boxes go, I'm not sure why they don't use Nascar for inspiration. They manage to do pit stops with very crude technology and a minimum of fuss. Plus they have a ruddy big concrete barrier protecting everyone but the actual pit crew which would significantly improve safety.

So my tip for the day: Copy the Nascar pit lane regulations.
"

Rating: Neutral (0)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

3. Posted by airman1, 23/10/2015 5:44

"One thing I do not agree with Mr. Mansell, I do not think that today's cars are easy to drive. The V8's were easy to drive, the Hybrids are not as much. Just watch the on-board footage and see the amount of steering corrections drivers have to make at every corner, mostly at the exit, due to torque release, it would tell you that it is not as easy as it might seem. Surely, the simulators can account for an apparent ease with which the drivers are able to operate these complex machines, but what else is there in the world of testing ban?
So the F1 has a problem, it is not of the rules, it is of a self-definition. What is F1 today? Racing, a sport, a pinnacle of motor-sport, or merely an expensive form of entertainment? When F1 answers these questions then it will know what to do. Until then we can cry and moan, and suggest, but to no avail. It is obvious that at some point, competition, any competition, based on technology will hit the wall. And then there are three obvious choices, allow it to proceed, freeze it or retrograde it to some point in history favored by the most."

Rating: Positive (3)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

4. Posted by Yeyox02, 22/10/2015 20:50

"This is xBox, play station and video games era and not real Formula 1. F1 was for real drivers not for Prima Donnas."

Rating: Neutral (0)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

5. Posted by Vinicius, 22/10/2015 16:38

"He just don't like simulators. So what? Can anyone ban the use of simulators?"

Rating: Neutral (0)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

6. Posted by oldschool, 22/10/2015 16:34

"1. The "cars" are not cars anymore (racing cars are loud, spitting, snarling, mechanical things of beauty with parts that one can see moving - driver included); what we have now is just computers on wheels, ugly characterless, soulless things spat out from a CAD/CAM system, click click click. The whole show relies 100% upon Information technology, not mechanical engineering; i.e. if the IT dept didn't exist then there'd be no "race" and nothing to "race" with. That's a BIG problem.

2. Sorry to be political, but it's the plain truth.... F1, like everything else, is kowtowing to the agendas of the clipboard fanatics of H&S busybodies, and Green policy, which is frankly just Communism in different clothes. Having fun and performing to the limits is not on their remit, one reason why the engines now are crap - in fact we're not even alowed to call them engines anymore!! Utter bo**ocks. There's too much reliance on aero too (& I work in aero).

3. Motor Racing is NOT safe, it is by definition dangerous; those who participate KNOW this and do so WILLINGLY. Driver do not get forced into their "cars" against their will.... it is THEIR decision, the KNOW the risks. Cotton wool does not a race driver make!"

Rating: Positive (3)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

7. Posted by scf1fan, 22/10/2015 16:03

"Sort of a tough crowd here today, but I find it interesting that the number of practical ideas are pretty small. (And I mean as much from NM, BE, and MM as well.)

@GrahamG - Limiting the number of people in the pit lane would probably result in lower crew cost. It would also make stacking in the pits more difficult, so the strategy of pits stops would be different. How would that increase the competitiveness of the field? (Though I'm sure the back of the field would appreciate it.)

@Darvi - Race distance tires have been tried in the past with mixed results. (Half way through the race someone thinks they are "losing pressure" in a tire. Do you let them come in and have an unfair advantage? Do you make them stop for a predetermined amount of time to negate that? Do you say you can come in and/or wait till it explodes and they get a DNF?) Again, everyone has the same rules, how would that increase the competitiveness of the field?

Sorry if I sound a bit repetitive, but that is the key question . . . How would any rule change increase the competitiveness of the field? The answer is that no rule change will do that, unless it is negatively scaled to the actual performance on the track! (Though many of the current rules do seem to make it more difficult.) And that might not be a desirable solution. In the end, and to the rules as otherwise proposed, the teams with the most money (except it seems for RB) will always be able to increase their advantage over the teams with less money. Always. Prove me wrong guys. ;-)

Personally, F1 is what it is; I enjoy most of it. Though I could do with a lesser amount of politics (BE and which track is next on the block) and false angst (RB threating to leave because they've fallen on more difficult times) and I wished that the teams had a bit more room to innovate!"

Rating: Positive (1)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

8. Posted by GrahamG, 22/10/2015 13:34

"The most expensive element in any organisation is people. If you want to reduce costs and make racing simpler, more competitive and easier to follow eliminate pit stops for all but genuine emergencies. Set a minimum time stationery in the pits - say 45 seconds - eliminate tyre changes and you would immediately reduce the number of people around by about 30% and eliminate not just the wage cost but also the cost of shipping them and their gear around the world. Agree that DRS is a travesty but simulators are pretty well "unbannable" and let the skilled people in the garages have an input to races, makes more sense than a Pirelli technician deciding them"

Rating: Neutral (0)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

9. Posted by Darvi, 22/10/2015 13:27

"Getting rid of simulators is fine, but in Mansell's day they were testing every week. However, I would be in favour of no input form the pitwall, tyres that you can push on for the whole race, less aero grip, more tyre grip and tyres which accept high slip angles to allow drivers to hang it out without getting spat off. Certainly, if you compare the on-board from today's cars with that from Senna at Monaco, today's cars do look easy to drive in comparison."

Rating: Neutral (0)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

10. Posted by bmendon, 22/10/2015 12:36

"Changing the rules for the sake of putting more rules in place that are even worse, seems to be something F1 is skilled at. I think Mr Mansell is like everyone else in that he wants to see F1 simplified and more driver dependent. I don't agree with his dislike of simulators. I do think F1 could put reasonable and straight forward rules in place that would put the racing back in the sport."

Rating: Neutral (0)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

11. Posted by scf1fan, 22/10/2015 11:23

"Change the rules, change the rules, change the rules . . . to what??? Unless they find some way to realistically limit a team's overall spending, nothing other than equalizing the field with some form of sliding (weight) scale will change anything. (And then how "pure" is that?) Everything else is just carping!
.
So how will limiting the number of engineers solve anything if all the teams have to comply with the same rule? A team with an A.Newey or a R.Byrne might still out engineer the other teams. Though in fact, it might be more cost effective to have 3-4-5 extra mid level engineers grinding away than waiting for lightning to strike from one "super star!" Part of the reasons that teams are so big these days is that they custom manufacture more of their own components (ha! steering wheels!) to gain that incremental advantage, and there for need a larger work force to support that effort. (Including the marketing folks to get the additional advertising revenue, which then requires additional hospitality centers to keep the sponsors happy . . . etc., etc.)
.
And the heck with those simulators!! (Or course in Mansell's time they could actually practice on a track!! Another changed rule for "cost savings.") One also needs to note that they also had a lot of "aids" in his time too; and Lotus was famous for pushing that envelop! Active ride height - then banned, sliding ground skirts - then banned, "ground effects" - limited; among others. So history repeats itself. The main difference now is that it's hard for a team to be doing anything that's really different from the other teams, some teams are just doing those things better. How can the rules be changed to prevent that?"

Rating: Negative (-2)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

Share this page

X

Copyright © Pitpass 2002 - 2022. All rights reserved.

about us  |  advertise  |  contact  |  privacy & security  |  rss  |  terms