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Russell reiterates porpoising fears

NEWS STORY
12/06/2022

Mercedes driver George Russell has repeated his call for the sport's powers that be to consider changing the rules as he fears porpoising phenomenon will lead to a "major incident".

On Friday, one of several drivers to have been observed taking a physical pounding from the bouncing on the Baku track, the British driver said: "The cars are running so close to the ground, it's crazy out there through those high speed corners, the car's fully bottoming out, It's really not comfortable to drive.

"I don't know what the future holds for this sort of era of cars," he added, "but I can't see us being able to... I don't think it's right to be able to run like this for the next four years or whatever we've got."

Following another hard day in the cockpit on Saturday, Russell reiterated his feeling that action must be taken.

"It's just a matter of time before we see a major incident," he warned, "a lot of us can barely keep the car in a straight line over these bumps.

"We're going around the last corners at 320 kph (198 mph)," he continued, "bottoming out, you can visibly see on the tarmac how close the cars are running to the ground.

"Formula 2 is in the same position as well," he added, "they've got a similar philosophy. It's unnecessary with the technology that we have in today's environment, it seems unnecessary that we're running an F1 car millimetres from the ground, and it's a recipe for disaster.

"I don't know what the future holds but I don't think we can sustain this for three years or however long these regulations are in force for."

"I think it's a combination also on this track," argued Fernando Alonso, "it has been very bumpy on the straight also with the old cars, so this year it's exaggerated.

"In Jeddah it was very smooth, and Australia, and no one was complaining," he added.

"It's going to be very difficult to agree for all the teams to make changes," he admitted. "But yeah, I wish they do something for the young boys. For me it's OK for a few more years!"

"It's a disaster to drive these cars on a bumpy circuit," said teammate Esteban Ocon. "It is not even that bumpy, when we are going to Montreal or Singapore, that's gonna hurt.

"We should try and make the cars a little bit better to ride because here we need to avoid the bumps and you can see the car pulling to one side and all that in the straight, so it is on the edge."

Check out our Sunday gallery from Baku, here.

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READERS COMMENTS

 

1. Posted by dejan, 14/06/2022 5:46

"GPDA should demand safe working conditions and healthy environment - this should include a car that is not experiencing vibrations above a certain level and this would include frequency, amplitude, etc.

If each team is required to provide a safe car that doesn't disintegrate in the event of a crash, why wouldn't vibrations be the same and FIA can even have a device that measures this during the races."

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2. Posted by Endre, 12/06/2022 14:04

"Simple solution; the FIA could mandate that each team has to raise ride height until there is no measurable aero bouncing on the longest straight at each track. If for Merc this would be half meter from the road, then so be it. This is part of technical development and know how. If they can't get it right, they should suffer for it. There were no complaints while they were dominating for so many years."

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3. Posted by Kkiirmki, 12/06/2022 7:25

"And just to reiterate, I’m not suggesting the porpoising isn’t real, just that continually harping on about it should not in any way influence the FIA to change the rules. "

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4. Posted by Kkiirmki, 12/06/2022 7:18

"Well, if you're that worried, you can leave, not being forced to be there. Plenty of people would love the opportunity to be in your seat, even with the "issues" Mercedes are having. Is he trying the: say it enough times and someone will believe you psychology? Simple solution, raise the height of the car until it doesn’t have the porpoising issue. See if being two seconds off the pace, not just one, is more palatable."

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