FIA targets "unnecessarily slow" driving


Other than track limits, the FIA is targeting the practice of driving unnecessarily slowly during qualifying in order to create a gap to the car ahead.

Over the last couple of seasons the practice has led to a number of near misses and also caused some drivers to fail to make the cut through to the next phase completely.

However, this weekend, in his second set of race notes - before the cars have even hit the track - race director, Michael Masi cites a particular section of the track as was the case in Sochi last year.

While the practice hasn't been an issue in Baku previously, it is understood that Masi is seeking to 'nip things in the bud'.

"Each Competitor and Driver is reminded of the provisions of Article 27.4 of the Formula 1 Sporting Regulations," says Masi in the latest race notes, referring to the rule that states: "At no time may a car be driven unnecessarily slowly, erratically or in a manner which could be deemed potentially dangerous to other drivers or any other person".

"For reasons of safety, during each practice session, acts such as weaving across the track to hinder another car may be referred to the stewards," he warns. "During Free Practice session 3 and the Qualifying Practice, the time published in accordance with Item 8 (the safety car line maximum time) of the Race Directors Event Notes will be used as a guide by the stewards to determine if a Driver is considered to be driving unnecessarily slowly on an out lap or any other lap that is not a fast lap or in lap.

"For the avoidance of doubt, the pit exit, as defined in Article 28.2 of the F1 Sporting Regulations is considered a part of the track and the provisions of Article 27.4 apply in this area.

"During any practice session, any driver intending to create a gap in front of him in order to get a clear lap should not attempt to do this between the entry to Turn 17 through to the exit of Turn 20.

"Any driver seen to have done this will be reported to the stewards as being in breach of Article 27.4 of the Sporting Regulations."

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Article from Pitpass (

Published: 03/06/2021
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