Blocking ban ‘about having respect’ – Hamilton

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In the round-up: Lewis Hamilton says the FIA’s ban on blocking in braking zones is a matter of fostering respect between drivers.

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Is the FIA’s ban on the ‘Verstappen block’ another case of incidents being treated more seriously when they involve front-running drivers?

So sad and so funny – Sainz said it best – this is not new and has happened more frequent in recent years but because people higher up the grid are effected does it suddenly become an issue.

Worst of all – even more advantage is given to the attacker who already has the benefit of DRS. So with this latest rule you are no longer allowed to move just before you break however as attacker you are allowed to dive bomb on the inside of the turn, pray you make the corner and in case you hit the car you wanted to overtake you only run a tiny risk of getting a pointless 10 second penalty (Rosberg on Raikkonen in Malaysia).

If Verstappen’s defensive move on Raikkonen in Hungary and Hamilton in Suzuka is going to be penalised it will be a very sad day.
Jelle van der Meer

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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53 comments on “Blocking ban ‘about having respect’ – Hamilton”

  1. Haha blue flag sgined by vertel. That’s original

    1. The only time a blue flag was respected 😁

  2. Bottas going to McLaren if Alonso is not satisfied by the performance

    1. Would that be a smart move given the McLaren’s pace? I keep hearing that the McLaren chassis is good, and that the 2017 rules are going move the balance back to stronger chassis, however, if the engine cannot deliver the power well enough, regardless of the end top speed, then, no amount of downforce is going to help.

      1. If his goal is a championship, then I think Mclaren easily has more chance than Williams. I mean, I love Williams, but championships and funding are related.

  3. Re COTD, while I think its easy to criticise the way that the rule change has come about, I think the rule change needed to occur… Kimi has had very near misses because of the lateness of the blocks within the braking zone. It was only a matter of time when Verstappen would be collected by a driver behind him. Alternatively, if it became accepted, then all other drivers would adopt the same blocking technique, at which point, the likelihood of a massive crash would exponentially increase.

    1. The extra speed the attacking driver has from Drs was also a factor in the decision. I’d rather get rid of Drs, but hey.

    2. I despise DRS with a passion, but it shouldn’t be used as an excuse for moving in braking zones like Hungary. We don’t want to see fully airborne crashes with bits of cars potentially in the crowd.

      Lots of COTDs supporting one particular view on this, but personally I don’t see it. You can’t drive like that and not expect a major crash sometime soon. The FIA should for once be applauded for being proactive, not reactive.

      1. I agree, there’s been for a long time now, a certain feeling of complacency that even Jules’ crash hast not erased from F1. More of these rule adjustments please, FIA.

  4. Completely disagree with COTD. Remember it’ll take the one moment to have a catastrophe and people will start to regret. These moves are dangerous and someone will pay a heavy price if not curbed now.

  5. Is the FIA’s ban on the ‘Verstappen block’ another case of incidents being treated more seriously when they involve front-running drivers?

    Kinda, and I don’t think that’s really a bad thing. Like Hamilton says, these guys have been driving this way for 10 years. Of course the complaints from people who haven’t been in the sport that long won’t carry as much weight.

    Verstappen’s comments garner my respect (as opposed to many who defend him). The rules are the same for everyone, now let’s see how it affects the racing. I always think it’s great when “untold rules” or “gentlemen agreements” are made official. It just makes things clearer for everyone.

    1. It is essential, to write down a rule when only one driver fails to follow the untold agreement.

      1. It’s not a rule until you write it down

      2. +1
        I think Hamilton has handled it well. Told Mercedes to stand down after the race, but then addressed the issue face-to-face in the next meeting. Verstappen would probably eventually learn to respect the other drivers, something easier not to do when you’re a teen and obviously full of yourself, but the risk of a serious incident occurring before that happened was fairly high.

  6. I want to see real racing with actual defending… Overtaking should be depending the capability of your car & the size of your ‘balls’, not on strategy or Bernies ridiculous ‘show’ elements like DRS & Pirelli’s tyres. Crashes can occur, and drivers will learn to deal with this because they want to finish a race and get the points.
    IMO it’s the same as on the road. The guy that crashes into the back of you is to blame.

    1. The best defense is a faster car. Give these guys cars that are faster than everyone else. Oh…wait…

      To the FIA’s defense, their development of DRS is the most exciting racing technology advancement their technical team has ever created. It’s so well thought of that other series have integrated it to make their racing more exciting. And not only that, the premium supcars have adopted DRS technology too. Like the P1, Veyron etc. If that isn’t proof enough of the sheer genius of DRS, then no amount automated downforce reduction measures will help either.

    2. Protect the bible and the bible will protect you

    3. If you relied on your ‘balls’ all the time we’d be forever fighting, having sex and defecating in the streets. There comes a time when the ‘thinking’ brain comes into play to realise that safety of others also matters.

      The Verstappem blocking manoeuvres, while exciting and have served him well in lower formulas, are simply dangerous in the faster Formula 1. “Cars can crash”, as you say, and they will be the most dangerous crashes in the sport with cars going over or even under the car ahead (a scenario that warrants a halo device).

      Blocking is unfair to the driver behind because it leaves virtually no way to get past. It’s clear that we’ve had top defensive driving without blocking and it rightly has been outlawed.

      1. “Blocking is unfair to the driver behind because it leaves virtually no way to get past.”

        1. Mammie it’s too hard to pass, do some thing!!

        2. @tychop, I think that what Reganamer was trying to say is that there normally is an accepted difference between a hard, but fair, defensive move and ones which verge into recklessness. For example, I presume that you would be critical of a driver who started weaving when going down a straight in order to prevent a driver from passing him.

          In the case of Verstappen, he has shown in the past that he is prepared to go to the extent of hitting other drivers rather than allowing them past – behaviour which other drivers would normally be criticised for, but seems to be accepted in his case.

          As an aside, I’d like to refer to something you stated – the idea that “IMO it’s the same as on the road. The guy that crashes into the back of you is to blame.”. The situation is rather different in reality and the law does not automatically take your side just because you are the person in front – rather, it would take into context your behaviour and that of the driver behind you.

          If you were driving in a way that was considered to be abnormal and unpredictable, the idea that “it is the responsibility of the driver behind me to avoid me” will not wash – you, as the driver, also have a legal responsibility to drive with the due consideration of other drivers on the road, and cannot just drive as you like. Just as on the public highway, similarly on the racetrack there are ultimately restrictions that you have to accept, and that drivers will sometimes fall foul of.

          People may hark back to the past as an example of “wheel to wheel racing”, but that sort of wheel banging wasn’t considered acceptable back in the 1960’s and 1970’s given that it could, and sometimes did, get drivers killed.

  7. Hamilton is a massive hypocrite in that case. His tweet after Suzuka about it being a great piece of defending or something just goes down the drain with this statement.

    1. @hahostolze
      What tweet? I only remember him saying there is no protest from himself as he is moving on.

      1. It was either in a tweet or in the race aftermath that he said it was a good move from Verstappen. So that’s what I’m referring to.

        1. @hahostolze
          All I remember Hamilton saying on it was when asked if he was happy with the move: “Well, it doesn’t really matter now. It has happened and we move forwards.”

          You’re calling him hypocritical based upon something I would suggest you have remembered incorrectly, that he hasn’t said.

          1. I would suggest that it is you who remembered incorrectly, in part perhaps because Hamilton deleted his tweet:

            “There is no protest from either myself or Mercedes. One idiot said we have but it’s not true. Max drove well, end of. We move on.”

            So yes, he DID say that Max “drove well” in that incident; now he says the opposite.


          2. That’s a bit of a stretch to read “a great piece of defending” from “Max drove well” though isn’t it? It’s a completely different statement altogether.

    2. It’s not hypocrisy, even if it were changing his mind about Suzuka which isn’t necessarily the case. He is talking generally.

  8. Re: COTD
    Talk about taking something out of context.

    I’ve always seen the value of DRS. F1 is in an aero-reliant formula and has been for the last 15+ years, and so DRS allows a faster car to get within range to attack a car in front. What is necessary is optimisation so that it isn’t a clear pass between 2 genuine cars that are in a race. All too often in the pre-DRS days, we would see a faster car stuck behind a much slower car without any way to get past; in the end we wouldn’t get to see the real race we all wanted to see between cars that are in a genuine title fight. Without DRS, the aero-heavy formula of 2017 would see utterly rubbish racing with hardly any overtaking.

    1. Yes but the problem is with the 2017 regs being aero-heavy. We don’t need DRS, we need wider tyres and less aero (I’ve been saying this same phrase for the last 6-7 years or so). We’ve got the first, but then they slap these massive wings on the cars.

  9. The FIA banning it has only brought forward the inevitable… it’s a ‘nothing to lose’ move, performed only by a driver who believes he can afford to crash. As I said in the comments in the poll, Verstappen would have stopped doing it without needing to be told as soon as he found himself fighting for a championship.

  10. “Max will have to respect us more” is what Hamilton is saying? Eh, that doesn’t come over as a solid ground for a rule change. Not in real life, and not in racing.

    1. “Max will have to respect us more” is what Hamilton is saying?


      Eh, that doesn’t come over as a solid ground for a rule change

      They haven’t changed any rules.

      1. If they start judging moves differently from now on, it’s defintely a shift in how the rules are enforced.

        If you get penalised for something now and you weren’t earlier, it’s equivalent to a rule change.

        1. Which is why *all* of the rules should be enforced 100% of the time, even if it seems unfair sometimes to do so. The only exception should be where all teams have been notified well in advance of the race that a particular rule will be ignored for safety reasons.

          The situation we have these days where rules on track limits, passing / blocking behavior, blue flags, etc. are all ignored on a daily basis and only enforced on rare and particularly controversial occasions — or just those where the stewards or Charlie got out of the wrong side of bed that morning — is the real problem.

    2. Youth not respecting their elders goes back to Socrates, let alone the beginnings of motor sport. I can think of half-a-dozen reasons why banning the Verstappen move might be a good idea, but increasing youngsters’ respect of other drivers is not among them.

      1. There’s not respecting by beating someone and not respecting by killing them. Subtle difference.

  11. Keith, I think ‘blocking’ is different to moving under braking. There’s a differences between he two, so I’mm confused what has been banned and what’s not.

    Moving under braking is what happened in Budapest, Hockenheim and Suzuka, whilst blocking is what happened in Spa against Kimi

  12. I can’t believe that there was a poll and even people that support the block. It’s a downright dirty, brainless and skilless move. I mean what it takes to take a look at the mirror and change direction? I can even drive backwards using the mirror! It’s all down to the fast reaction of the attacker to avoid a crash. Yes, DRS overtake is easy, but to counter it with a similarly skilless move? So you dutch people want to see MV succeed in F1 , but such block’s going to kill the whatever sport that’s still left in the F1. For whatever reason FIA now finally decided to ban it, I don’t care, really just put it to a end now.

    1. Well. If DRS is a problem… Remove DRS… Not introduce dangerous blocking. What a spoiled Brat.

  13. Wow Freddie Hunt is a carbon copy of his old man.

  14. How quickly people forget about risk is beyond me. Not long ago we lost a good bright kid in these cars, remember? Remember Alonso vs. Guttierez in Melbourne? Or Webber vs. Kovalainen in Valencia? There was no movement under braking and still there little to no chance of avoiding collision. The chances are even less when there is a movement. There is a limit. And all Verstappen and others did was exploiting a grey area in the racing regulations. More mature drivers understood it without saying. I guess Max needs a 200+ kph shunt to get his marbles sorted. Most of the experienced drivers had one and learned from it. Maybe Verstappen needs to ask Button about how he felt in Monaco 2003 or how well did it go for Alonso, when he hit a tyre at Interlagos on the same year. Or quiz Felipe Massa about his memories from Hungary. These folks risk their lives out there. And if one of them has a hard time understanding that it can be fatal i’m all for explaining it to him with a simple rule clarification.

    1. @Leftie, Max already experienced what it is too be braked tested, remember Monaco 2015? And there was no run off area, just a french guy who couldn’t stand being passed by the new kid on the block.

      1. Spot on!

      2. Yes! The guy who made one clear move to defend the inside line into St.Devote – Max couldn’t handle it and barged right back into him. Makes his behavior even more immature, doesn’t it?

  15. Nolog, I don’t know where you read that particular claim, but the telemetry data which was presented to the stewards showed that Grosjean was actually braking around 5m closer to the corner than he had on the previous lap. All the evidence that was presented to the stewards indicated that Grosjean was the one who was driving normally and that it was Verstappen who failed to brake when he should have (if anything, he might well have crashed into the barriers at St Devote anyway, such was the speed he was trying to enter the corner at).

    1. @Nolog also this.

  16. Next rule will be that a driver of a slower car must wave to the driver in a faster car that passes him.
    Showing respect will be more important in F1.
    This will attract more viewers.

  17. It’s ironic. People tend to forget quickly. Remember when “One-move rule” was introduced? Back then it was greeted as a step towards fair racing and major victory in the fight against dirty and dangerous driving. Now the same happening and happening for the same reasons, but suddenly it’s killing the sport.

    1. The reason for that disconnect is quite simple. Due to a variety of factors — but mostly an increasing reliance on aerodynamic downforce — real racing barely exists any more. True passes (as opposed to DRS-enabled foregone conclusions) are rarer than they’ve ever been these days, and so folks long for a return to real racing, even if that means dirty racing.

      We absolutely have to break F1’s reliance on aerodynamics and remove DRS entirely or make it available to all drivers at all times, if we want to return to real racing. And if we do so, the upset over this decision will vanish near-instantly.

      1. This has nothing to do with DRS. It’s about moving in the braking zone. Why on earth do people keep harping on about DRS?

        Enforcing this rule should be good for racing because it cuts down on dirty tricks. if this type o move is allowed all drivers will be forced to do it and then no overtaking will be possible besides DRS overtakes on the straight.

        So if anything, this is done to reduce the dependency on DRS overtakes.

  18. Happy 50th birthday to Alex Zanardi.
    100% inspirational man and living legend!

  19. Agreed with the COTD.

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