Kevin Magnussen, Haas, Mugello, 2020

Giovinazzi wants restart changes after “really dangerous” crash

2020 Tuscan Grand Prix Ferrari 1000

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Formula 1 should look at how its restart procedure can be improved following a crash which wiped out four drivers in the Tuscan Grand Prix, says Antonio Giovinazzi.

The Alfa Romeo driver retired along with Carlos Sainz Jnr, Kevin Magnussen and Nicholas Latifi in the crash, which caused the race to be red-flagged.

Giovinazzi said the crash was caused by some drivers in the middle of the pack accelerating too soon, while others ahead had slowed.

“People behind were pushing already,” he said. “The last thing that I saw was Magnussen completely stopped in front of me.

“I tried to avoid him but he was just there and I was already flat out. So it was just a really dangerous manoeuvre.

“I’m really frustrated especially because after lap one I was up to 14th and after that everything could happen. Just really dangerous things. We need to check what we can change of this.”

Latifi, who was running behind Magnussen at the restart, said he expected restarts would be difficult on the long straight at Mugello.

“On this track with the finishing line being so late it was quite clear, I think, that the leader was always going to try and go as late as possible, just to avoid the slipstream effect. In the midfield to the back of the pack the concertina effect always makes it a bit more difficult to judge.”

The Williams driver said he almost hit Magnussen at the final corner, and couldn’t do anything to avoid the crash which occured on the pit straight.

“From already the little straight going into the last corner it seemed like at least the cars around me everyone was pushing flat out at the restart. So obviously I went.

“But I almost hit the back of Kevin already at the apex of the last corner, I had a really close miss there. And then we bunched up again and then it seemed like everyone went again.

“So when you’re that far back and just reacting to the cars around, in my experience when that happens as happened in Formula 2 in Baku most noticeably, if the leader doesn’t keep a consistent pace – I’m not sure if that’s the case, obviously, I can’t see – it just amplifies the effect.

“So I really couldn’t do anything to avoid that. It was a shame.”

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2020 Tuscan Grand Prix Ferrari 1000

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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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15 comments on “Giovinazzi wants restart changes after “really dangerous” crash”

  1. Wasn’t there a period of a few years a few years ago where you could overtake after the safety car line which was before the start/finish line? I feel like returning to that might be an easy fix. Those onboards were horrible to watch.

    1. I don’t even know when that rule was reverted, I only noticed that the race restarts are now from the start finish line. I liked the SC1 line version much better, I can only remember one dangerous incident with that, when Matsushita in F2 started pushing and then slowed at the front in Baku, and we had a similar pileup (albeit the track there was much wider), but at that instance it was clearly the driver’s fault at the front. I think generally when the leader follows the rules, that version was better.

      In today’s case, I think the biggest factor was that the whole field was too widely spread out under the SC, and when the SC phase was ending the drivers were thus too late to bunch up, and the drivers at the back were hung out to dry. One replay showed that ahead of Russell was a big gap still at the pit entry and the drivers behind were all in a single line, that might have caused the accident.

    2. If you do that here, it would just mean that cars bunch up there, in the last corner, to avoid giving the they just passed a nice long tow to get past towars the end of the straight @tommy-c. Pretty much exactly as it would turn out in Baku, as Latifi mentions.

  2. Or do it Indy style. Line up in 2 rows, slow, all released to race when lights go green.

    1. Saw a pretty bad crash in Nascar with a double row restart earlier this year.
      It’s a solution for what happened yesterday, but it has it’s issues as well.

      And in Indy there was an incident with a restart in Iowa in July.
      Pit informed Herta a fraction late the restart was called off and Herta and Veekay had a horrible crash.
      Both at full speed, Veekay knew it was called off a fraction earlier and lifted, Herta crashed into the back of him at full speed.

      A solution similar to the yellow flag warning on the steering wheel I think might be best.
      Everyone goes on green.

  3. It looked really scary but it was also completely their own fault. I would think there are no new rules necessary because everyone just got the reminder of not being an idiot?

    Ah who am I kidding. More rules incoming

  4. In lower classes there were no issues with safety car restarts, Giovinazzi and his F1 peers need to have common sense which surely was lacking today.

  5. The solution is for drivers to use their brains at the restart. Complacency caused this.

  6. The guys that crashed into back, were so far behind in the last corner, it almost seemed like they weren’t racing.

  7. Another serious crash caused by something ironically called “Safety”-car

    Can we finally assume that having the cars together racing for position at the same time is the most dangerous thing in current days, and should be restricted to the minimum (that is to the start), or are we waiting for someone to get seriously injured by something like this after a Safety Car deployment to remove a car in a completely safe position like Magnussen last week?

  8. So, Giovinazzi floored it ‘because others behind were’ when Magnussen ahead still hadn’t gone and was surprised he hit him? Sounds like people behind were accelerating before the people in front, so… that ain’t his fault. That’s yours?

  9. Anthony Davidson addressed this perfectly on the Sky coverage… it was a fault with the driving, not the procedure. The drivers near the front, who weren’t dropping back and trying to gamble on getting a jump, managed just fine.

  10. They should be able to easily implement a system where the red LED panels on the rear of the cars can turn green so that those who can’t see the leader can react only when the leader reacts and goes.
    I’m pretty sure IndyCar has a similar thing, but all cars automatically flash yellow when a full course caution occurs

  11. In this situation if you accelerate into the back of another car that hasn’t yet gone then it is entirely your fault.

    It always makes me laugh with Grosjean moaning about safety with his record and agressive driving style. The kid is a liability.

  12. Nothing wrong with the system, its been done many times without issues.

    Hell they were many crashes yesterday on this track outside of SC restart, so I reckon its more of the track design/lack of familiarity/general errors/etc. Hell F2 and F3 had plenty too.

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