Istanbul race thrilled but top F1 figures say grip-less tracks “cannot be the norm”

2020 F1 season

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It may have ended in Lewis Hamilton 10th win in 14 races, but last weekend’s Turkish Grand Prix was one of the most unpredictable of the year.

RaceFans readers gave Istanbul’s first grand prix for nine years some of the highest scores we’ve seen in Rate the Race so far this year (the poll remains open). But F1’s return to the track was in others ways deeply unsatisfying, and prompted criticism from drivers and teams.

When Istanbul was announced as one of the new venues added to the F1 calendar many drivers predicted the circuit and its signature turn eight would be a spectacular showcase for the performance of modern F1 cars. However the 11th-hour decision to resurface the track before F1 arrived left drivers floundering a grip-less surface.

In Friday practice drivers lapped over 10 seconds slower than expected. They said they’d never seen anything like it before.

“Usually over the weekend it gets more and more rubber from the tyres and it gets better and better but it wasn’t happening,” said Hamilton in an interview with Stephen Colbert. “It was maybe a cheap job, I don’t know.”

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Istanbul Park, 2020
Hamilton suggested resurfacing had been a “cheap job”
It got worse on Saturday when rain fell – and more rain came on Sunday. Little grip and low temperatures plus variable levels meant teams fell in and out of the sweet spot of tyre performance seemingly at random.

The result was two days of almost unfathomable swings in performance. Mercedes’ season-long run of pole positions ended as they lapped a whopping 4.7 seconds off the pace. Racing Point, who endured their worst qualifying performance of the year at the previous round, took pole position and would have swept the front row had Antonio Giovinazzi not blundered into Sergio Perez’s path on his final flying lap.

Under the circumstances and given the conditions, some drivers were unwilling to be too hard on the race promoters for the poor surface. “It’s an anomaly,” said Daniel Ricciardo, “but if it was all the time, it would feel like a robbery. It’s like, why are we putting so much into these cars if we can’t actually push the limits?”

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“We didn’t really get to push an F1 car this weekend,” he admitted. “Sure it made a tricky and exciting but it was hard to get a lot of satisfaction out of it from a driving point of view. I obviously sympathise, it’s a last-minute calendar so I don’t want to go too hard on them. But I don’t recommend they resurface the tracks like this a month before we come here deliberately.”

George Russell, Williams, Istanbul Park, 2020
Istanbul race was “not what Formula 1 is about”, said Russell
Others were more clearly infuriated at missing the opportunity to drive their cars at the limit of their capabilities at what is regarded as one of the best modern-generation F1 tracks.

“This weekend has not been really what Formula 1 is about,” said George Russell. “I’m sure the show looked great and I’m sure I would have loved watching it from my sofa at home but it’s just been a lottery for everybody out there. I love driving in wet conditions, but this was just something else.

“It was frustrating not being able to exploit this fantastic circuit,” he continued. “I think everybody was so excited to come here and from the very first lap in first practice, we just had absolutely no grip.

“The biggest factor without a shadow of a doubt was the new resurfacing. From what I understand it all had to be done very last-minute. The Turkish corporation or whoever ran the race did a really good job to get everything done in time and they were delayed by some really poor weather a month or two ago when they planned to resurface it and then planned for other categories to race on it. I understand and appreciate all of that. Ultimately it’s nobody’s fault.”

But Russell reckoned the concrete apron in the pit lane “had a hell of a lot more grip than the actual race track”, and the race did not look good for Formula 1.

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“If you want chaos and carnage and drivers being made to idiots there are other categories and sports out there you can go and watch. Formula 1 is about the best cars, the best drivers, the best teams, going into the best tracks and showing what they can do. And this weekend was not that.”

A comparable, though much less extreme, situation happened at the Canadian Grand Prix in 2010. Teams were surprised by unexpectedly low grip levels on their Bridgestone tyres, which produced an unpredictable race.

The sport tried to emulate that in 2011 by urging incoming tyre supplier Pirelli to produce rubber which degraded quickly, forcing drivers to make pit stops. But teams are not keen to repeat the conditions they encountered last weekend, however entertaining a race it may have produced.

Andreas Seidl, McLaren, Spa-Francorchamps, 2020
Seidl hopes F1’s new rules will enliven races
Ferrari’s sporting director Laurent Mekies, who was at the helm of the team last weekend while team principal Mattia Binotto stayed at their Maranello base, made it clear that however spectacular the race was, it isn’t a model for future grands prix.

“We all know that wet races produce a great show, a great spectacle. It puts things more in the hands of the drivers and they can show their skills better. In some respects Friday’s grip level was a bit like a wet [track].

“Certainly the race in these sort of conditions was I’m sure a fantastic show. But as we said, we are conscious that this cannot be the normal because you would not target for these sort of things.”

Although the conditions which produced last weekend’s drama are unlikely to be replicated in the future, McLaren team principal Andreas Seidl has faith in planned rules changes for the 2021 F1 season and beyond to deliver consistently better racing.

“It’s clear everyone wants to see cars fighting, wants to see overtaking manoeuvres, wants to see also that not always the same cars out the front, wants to see that people can actually make up positions coming through the field from the back,” he said.

“But at the same time Formula 1 is also about, in normal conditions, putting up or deciding the best car, the best performing car, and then it’s also normal that the best car is in front in qualifying and in the race as well. That’s part of the DNA as well at Formula 1.

“There’s a lot of positive stuff coming from ’22 onwards with the new technical regulations that should allow the cars to race closer together. It should help then also to see more overtaking manoeuvres. All the other stuff that’s also happening like the financial cap should also help to get all the field closer together. There is no reason to be pessimistic.”

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Dieter Rencken
Dieter Rencken has held full FIA Formula 1 media accreditation since 2000, during which period he has reported from over 300 grands prix, plus...
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53 comments on “Istanbul race thrilled but top F1 figures say grip-less tracks “cannot be the norm””

  1. I Agree. Hamilton winning for Mercedes, t’was a freaking lottery!!

    1. It was a lottery once the Black Panthers were off the front row. However, Red Bull entirely gave the race weekend on a silver platter to Mercedes. I don’t think that once DRS was enabled, either Racing Point could have kept Hamilton behind. Had Albon or Verstappen not spun a total of 3 times, they could have finished 1-2 at most. I doubt that Hamilton would have overtaken both Albon and Verstappen without their incidents.

      1. We will never know…

      2. “finished 1-2 at most”; no no I wont have it, they could have done a lot better than that.

      3. Well every cloud has a silver lining. As a result of this, Mercedes will be asking themselves the question, how was it that Redbull and the other teams managed to get their tires up to tempurature. What tricks might they have employed to garner this advantage?

        If you wanted to neutralise the advantages of the Mercedes car, you could not have come with a better senario. Hard tires on a green track. The question in all this is how come Pirelli didnt foresee this?
        Dont they send scouts out to survey the track ahead of the next meet? Did the FIA really not know the track was this bad?

        Yes the race was eventful, and by some miracle became this befitting climax to the Championship.
        but it could, like one or two other races this year, have been so much different. I feel sorry for those that weren’t betting on …..

  2. Agree. Lets not repeat this race. Can’t remember having seen such a bad ‘race’. Not really a race though, that level was never achieved. This is like watching a champions league game where there is 5 feet of snow on the field: utterly useless unless you like those bumper cars on the fair. Had nothing to do with the pinnacle of motorsport but more an arcade race. No wonder Liberty is going to clownesk racing if the audience keeps reacting enthusiastic to these kind of events.

    1. And yet Max dominated all sessions bar the last and Lewis won the race. Id not want every race like this for sure and missed seeing Turn 8 at full beans, but railtrack races are pretty dull as is tyre & fuel saving. Drivers and teams want perfection and unlimited grip, fans want action.

      I dont think we should be too pious about it, its a race, in a car, round a field. I quite like seeing some of the best drivers on the planet try and keep it on the road. Made a nice change

      1. I agree on the somewhat processional stuff we often get. Maybe the sweet spot is somewhere in the middle. Rain on a track with multiple racing lines having at least some grip but still enough mayhem for the best drivers to stand out while car performance gets neutralised.

    2. I’ll take an arcade bumper car race over the slot cars we usually see any day of the week.

  3. It gave us an exciting race, but it was a huge disappointment in terms of laptime. We barely saw attempts trying turn 8 at full throttle. Verstappen had an onboard on Friday, and it was horrible to watch. They were too slow for their cars. I was excited for this track, but when I started watching on FP1, I was massively turned off by the laptimes. At least we have 1 year more at Suzuka, Silverstone and SPA to see insane speeds of the cars.

    1. ” A huge disappointment in terms of lap times”, really? you find the lap-timer more exciting than the car and driver trying to master the conditions @krichelle, I prefer @skipgamer ‘s pov.
      I was intending to write a comment on the disparity between the lap times and the race rating to promote my pov that that harder tyres that allow the drivers to exploit a bit of sideways driving and opposite lock where advantageous would actually be both more entertaining to watch and reward the better driver. Naturally I wouldn’t suggest tracks should be as unpredictable as Turkey but I don’t care if lap times are a few seconds slower.

      1. I know I was trying to get my head round that. Im not a MotoGP fan particularly but those bikes are 30 second slower round Silverstone, dont lack for drama though. Laptime is for Nordschliffe, hill climbs and Mr Saturday. Racing is in the craft

  4. Jose Lopes da Silva
    19th November 2020, 13:05

    I could cope with some action. It’s been 25 years of complaing about dirty air and losing downforce due to the car in front.

    1. Even in the wet, it was almost impossible to follow in Turkey, what a let down. Being an f1 fan is tough.

  5. “Formula 1 is about the best cars, the best drivers, the best teams, going into the best tracks and showing what they can do. And this weekend was not that.”

    That’s a very interesting comment because whilst that’s what we all want, that’s not what F1 is at all these days. It’s most of the field embarrassingly slower than the Mercedes, cars heavily differentiated by what suppliers they have, drivers who have the biggest wallets and teams who don’t design their own cars going into some truly awful circuits like Sochi…

    1. Couldn’t have said it better.

      F1 has a lot of work to do, and in the mean time I’d take conditions like last weekend over what we see from F1 otherwise these days.

    2. @petebaldwin

      that’s not what F1 is at all these days

      F1 is today pretty much what it’s always been.

      The performance between teams used to be larger than today, Engines as well as other components have at times been just as big a factor, Pay drivers have always been a part of the sport & back when customer cars were allowed you had more of the grid than today not designing there own cars.

      I do agree with the circuits though.

      1. Jose Lopes da Silva
        19th November 2020, 13:52

        You had pay drivers but you didn’t had Team Owners, unless they started their own team from scratch.

        1. Jose Lopes da Silva, what about figures like Gregor Foitek, Ricardo Rosset or Paolo Barilla to name a few?

          There were certainly pay drivers who ran the team in all but name thanks to the amount of money that they brought to the team – and, to put it bluntly, the drivers that we complain about now as pay drivers are a lot more talented than quite a lot of the pay drivers of the past.

          @stefmeister you could also mention that there was a lot of rather blatant attempts to copy other cars in the 1970s and 1980s – for example, just look at the clones of the Lotus 79 and Williams FW07 that appeared on the grid in that period (with the irony that Lotus themselves considered the Williams FW07 to be ripping off the design of the Lotus 79). Asides from that, there was the rather considerable amount of industrial espionage that went on during that period – indeed, there are some championship winners that owe quite a bit to stealing information from other teams via industrial espionage.

    3. @petebaldwin I can’t go along with your comment. You’ve taken that quote you provide, which is all truths, and simply put a negative spin on F1 anyway. Sure, I get where you’re coming from, but in spite of your counterpoints it remains true that F1 has the best teams and drivers on the best tracks. They just can’t display that as much when they’re on the equivalent of black ice, which is the main point of the article.

      Look we all know what the problems in F1 have been, and some of them have been around a long time. But as I have reminded folks around here for about three years now, change is afoot and has been taking place since Liberty and Brawn took over, and come 2022 F1 will finally be rid of the last vestiges of the BE era and clean air dependent cars.

      So rather than the quote you have selected to then take and rip F1 apart, yet again, I prefer the last three paragraphs of the article. As Seidl says in the last paragraph above…“There’s a lot of positive stuff coming from ’22 onwards with the new technical regulations that should allow the cars to race closer together. It should help then also to see more overtaking manoeuvres. All the other stuff that’s also happening like the financial cap should also help to get all the field closer together. There is no reason to be pessimistic.”

      Long and badly needed change is afoot and Liberty and Brawn could not have reacted any faster since taking over, of course due to contracts but also to give the teams their say and their time to adapt to a wholly new F1. What Seidl is implying is that every race should be more enthralling come 2022, and no longer will there be this craving for, or this excitement over, a race such as Turkey. Any thoughts of reverse grids or drs can go the way of the dodo too.

      1. They just can’t display that as much when they’re on the equivalent of black ice, which is the main point of the article.

        I think Hamilton displayed it in the Mercedes perfectly… It’s almost as if (shock horror) the best driver, in the best car, won at one of the best tracks. Yes the surface wasn’t even remotely good, but in some respects the rain saved race. It’s not uncommon to see torrential rain produce similar results in the past.

        At the end of the day racing is putting up with whatever conditions are thrown at you. I wonder if he would have rather them cancelled the race, it sure sounds like it.

        1. Particularly after how he did on Saturday.

  6. I guess the rating says a lot about the fans. Many races have seen little to no racing, and that affects expectations. F1 problems apart.
    The racing was awful, but the race was dramatic. Early 2012 and 13 f1 got slammed for lottery racing. Now lottery is furore, I don’t get it. It was not a lottery, then nor now but opinion changed in my opinion based on who is winning.
    Personalky I take drama over stalemate any day.
    It does not make the race any good though.
    A few real overtakes on the beggining, lots of mistakes, credit to those who made the most out of it, timely activation of the DRS, and an anti-climatic finish.

    1. The typical bipolar hypocrisy of F1 ‘fans’.

    2. The Monza Grand Prix was a lottery. This was much more about skill and patience.

  7. Resurfacing the track should’ve been done much further in advance, like back in August when this race got confirmed. Nevertheless, an exception to the rule rather than a norm. Track surfaces have to get re-laid from time to time, and it isn’t like drivers would struggle with grip on every occasion. Only this one stands out as such a case, so unlikely to happen again for the time being.

  8. A situation like this where circumstances created a low grip surface is fine as it was an unexpected thing that caught everyone out & created some fun for the spectators over the weekend & a unique challenge for teams/drivers (Much like the tyres at Montreal 2010 or the late race downpour’s at Spa/Brazil 2008).

    However if they were to try & artificially recreate that elsewhere I don’t think that would be a positive step as it would just feel artificial & gimmicky & you lose a lot of that unexpected aspect that made things play out as they did over the Istanbul weekend. And no doubt teams would spend time figuring it out & finding the optimum way to drive on that type of surface anyway just as they did with the high-deg tyres.

    Additionally TBH i’m not sure it was that positive a thing anyway. Yes fine you can say it mixed things up & that watching drivers struggling so much was fun for a bit. But for me the novelty of that quickly wore off & watching the cars at times look like they were barely able to go faster than 50mph with drivers spinning when they weren’t even pushing at what looked like 10mph looked more pathetic than any real test of skill & after a bit that did start to take away from my enjoyment.

    You want to see drivers able to push, You want to see the cars more on the limit & given how slowly they were having to go due to how little grip they had i’m not sure we ever saw that which is a shame given how great the Istanbul circuit is.

  9. How was it a lottery? Who were generally the fastest cars? The Mercedes and Force India, Red Bull and Ferrari were up there, followed by Renault, McLaren, and Red Bull fashion… Who was at the back? HAAS, Williams, Alfa… Pretty much the season as standard.

    The conditions were the same for everyone so it was just down to who made the most of it. Sure it wasn’t even close to ideal conditions and I wouldn’t want to see it every race, but for every now and then it was perfect. Really mixes things up and allows the teams and drivers to showcase how well they can take advantage of something that’s not the norm, which Hamilton highlighted to a T.

    I’d totally be down for a few gripless races. Just like tight street circuits, or even ovals, the more variance the better. I don’t think F1 has to be all about 2-3 low speed corners, 2-3 mid speed corners and 2-3 high speed corners, rinse and repeat throughout the season with the only variance being how many of each there are in which direction…

    1. Agreed 100 percent. And it was three of the most experienced drirvers who won, so it obviously wasn’t a lottery, but a test of skill. The younger drivers couldn’t hold onto their places at the end.

    2. I’d totally be down for a few gripless races. Just like tight street circuits, or even ovals, the more variance the better.

      Agree 100%. Just as the 2010 Canada race led us to the Pirelli era high deg tyres, let this not be the start of a low-grip tarmac era.

      What F1 needs is variety. some low grip, some high grip, some smooth surfaces, some prone to graining, etc. Other sports embrace such variance – cricket has spinning tracks / seaming tracks, large grounds / small grounds; tennis has grass / clay / hard courts – but in F1, the teams / drivers show reservations. Hence, it is critical that FIA and F1 push through and add variety to the calendar.

      For me, it was no problem to see that Turn 8 wasn’t as fast as before. And frankly, the low speeds due to lower grip are a problem only because we know how this track had higher grip before. If you think of the stadium complex in COTA, it has always been low grip (since its 1st race in 2012) limiting higher speeds through that slow section. But no one complains about it as no one knows how much faster it can be with higher grip.

      It was more fun to see drivers struggling and having to struggle to find grip. It rewarded them with 2-3 seconds worth of lap time in the race vs getting a reward of just 2-3 tenths worth of lap time in a regular race. While the gap was undoubtedly exaggerated by the rain, even without rain, this would have been a fun race.

  10. Drivers are all after fame and money. Whenever a condition makes it harder to get to the money pot, they complain. Therefore you dont see this level of criticism about Sochi, France and Australia. Those fragile drivers…

    1. @Antonio Nazzi They’d be in the wrong place and should do something else if money (or fame) were the only motivator.

  11. I thought it was a great race. The fact is when the leading team has a 0.5 to 1 second gap on the field in dry running you’re never going to get a tight, strategic fight at the front of the field. You have to rely on a lottery throwing up something interesting like Monza and to a lesser extent the Silverstone races.

    1. True. And still Hamilton won by almost half a minute. You can say it without the sky falling in, you know. Try. You may eventually resolve some of your issues.

  12. As others have pointed out, it rained and even a track with grip would have reduced speed in the wet. Mercedes struggled in qualifying because of the wet cold conditions. On a dry track we would have had another pole by Mercedes and the Mercedes cars would have lapped the entire field on this super fast track.

    1. @jimfromus Highly unlikely Mercedes would’ve lapped the rest of the field (including the faster RB) on pure pace had the race been dry throughout anymore than on any other track, longer or shorter.

  13. F1 race rates 9’s and 10’s.
    F1 strongly and quickly vows to avoid re-occurrence of such a shameful disaster….

    1. Just typical F1 then.
      This race clearly showcased that format needs mixing up just to counteract the massive imbalance created by big brands.

  14. I don’t know obviously they will not go to resurface every tracks to have this low grip, and even after some months the oil would go out of the track, and the grip would be much higher.

    The drivers were upset a bit, that’s not a big surprise. As I percieved this low grip surface combined with the quite wet conditions made the cars look like the poorest cars driven (in dry conditions) by the likes of Mazzacane or Yoong from the earlier decades, or some better but less sophisticated makes from the 70’s-80’s. That’s very far from the conditions they got used to. But without the rain, this still could have been much less dramatic. But these cars are still very sophisticated so even if they had to correct a lot it was far from those crazy turbo cars from the 80’s, because they had more predictability, and they not had to drive around the huge and sudden kick of power combined with the enormous turbo holes. But at these wet conditions the frequent necessity of corrections made it similar to those old days.

    Interestingly Ricciardo was not enjoying it as much as I expected, he’s brave but he is definitely the son of this era, he told that he does not want to go Nordschleife again as well (as I interpret, not even casually), because he got scared by the track and I guess he finds the level of safety a pointless hazard to take despite of being a top driver.

    It was funny to see or hear how today’s engines struggled at wheelspin in the wet, at wheelspin the engines sounded quite bad especially in the quali. Do they have an engine mode for wet conditions? Because many racecars have such as I heard for example in the case of an LMP3 car. (Although I know we are just after a big restriction on engine modes availability.)

    So I liked it more than the drivers, but even if they intend to have some tracks with less grippy surface, I think they will never exaggerate the effect to this extent. I think even if the low grip at Portimao made it amazing or dramatic in a similar way, it was not fully intentional in the case of these two tracks.

    On the other hand dropping some downforce would provide less grip as well, and I think increasing the downforce is not a solution for F1’s problems, tyres and human body can’t take much more G forces and sudden changes in G loads than the levels they are currently having to face at these huge cornering speeds. As I remember the highest delta G loads are surely above 10, probably even above 12 at Silverstone, that must feel insane. (I mean for example +5G in a left hander and then -5G in a right hander then that’s a 10G load change, and that’s a lot if those corners are close to each other.) So these drivers are facing a lot of G forces, probably only jet fighter pilots and aerobatics pilots are regularly facing more while driving some kind of vehicles. So yes, corner speeds and downforce could be increased more, even wider tracks could be designed (instead of designing cars to race well on the many already existent nice tracks…), but there are obvious limits, the driver could have a blackout at even much higher cornering speeds, or the tyres will surrender to the forces, because it will made of rubber for a long while anyway. And as we see the limit is where one goes as fast as possible and not crashes. In the wet it was lower :)

    I wonder how grippy Portimao will become some months later. Is there a possibility that it will provide a very high grip level, as it is very very smooth? Or as it is not so abrasive, it will only provide mediocre grip? I was a bit sad that they not had the chance to show how fast F1 could be there, but I enjoyed these races quite much, and I think it was a good test, to see how it would look like if they would clamp downforce. But of course it was not achieved by simplifying aero, so mechanical grip is another thing, so it was different.

    1. Its a shame they outlawed traction control, that might have mitigated these condition. I guess that level of control is considered driver skill.

  15. As I see teams often tend to risk a puncture instead of giving up on achieving a good result for the sake of safety, how that could be regulated to have better safety?

    I have no better idea than to deal a championship points deduction for having a puncture, if the puncture is not caused by debris (or some kind of manufacturing error), so after some proper investigation. As the tyre allocation should be random, it could be ok, if tyre manufacturing errors are sufficiently unlikely.

    Here I have a quite interesting question:
    Are the softer tyre compounds more prone to delamination, or more prone to tread and sidewall separation compared to the harder compounds, and how much? Is the difference significant, or the softer compounds tend to have less problems with delamination because their tread and grip will wear off soon enough to prevent other problems?

    1. Or constructors point deduction would be better, because nowadays the teams are rarely allowing the drivers to make decisions on the fly about whether to pit or not.

  16. I commented after Friday practice that I thought maybe the drivers would be having some fun with the unusually slippery track. Guess I was wrong about that, especially after the rain hit, but that doesn’t change the fact that qually and the race were a LOT of fun for most of us viewers. I certainly wouldn’t want a steady diet of that sort of thing though.

  17. Seems like when talking about changes for 2022, people were all for mixed up grids and unpredictable finishes and if speed and performance were sacrificed to achieve it that was fine. Now there are complaints that the grid was mixed, the result was unpredictable and speed was sacrificed.
    And yes, if you watched practice and qualifying you likely would not have predicted a Hamilton victory and Vettel in third.

    1. Self awareness was never convenient.

  18. The race was an entertaining farce. I don’t mind the odd race throughout the year that is a bit mad and when it is a one off then it’s fun. If that was every week however then I doubt I’d watch the sport. Unlike some fans on here though I’d just leave the site and stop commenting if I hated the sport and didn’t enjoy the races. Anyone calling someone a hypocrite should perhaps take a look in the mirror themselves.

  19. @slowmo The race was an entertaining farce. I don’t mind the odd race throughout the year that is a bit mad and when it is a one off then it’s fun. If that was every week however then I doubt I’d watch the sport.

    +1

  20. In the end the fans like to things:
    – hard fought battles and overtakes
    – unpredictability
    Given DRS ruins the first one, it’s no surprise rain-hit races have the highest rating.

  21. One point not made, It appears to me that the wet/intermediate tyres are as temperature dependant as the slicks, I noted that LH was running fast laps on treadless intermediates while the Red Bulls and others were spinning out on near new intermediates. I know LH is the best but MV is no slouch and the Red Bull usually has plenty of downforce, so I suspect tyre temperature was a more important factor than tread depth, something for Pirelli to work on.

    1. The MV vs LH debate was conclusively ended this race. Max is nowhere near Hamilton’s level. Lewis is the far superior driver.

      1. Germany last year Hamilton hit the barrier and had a massive high speed spin on the first corner.

        Also, on the weekend Hamilton went off track multiple times losing positions in the first half of the race until the track dried enough for the Merc to dominate.

      2. Jethro Janison
        20th November 2020, 3:07

        That debate was ended much like 2020 ended the debate on who was the better 30 year old driver – Vettel or Perez? Answer being Perez without a doubt… Shame RP axed him for the dollar sign name

  22. The newly surfaced Istanbul actually brought out the best of the talent and strategy skills of drivers and teams. We still had Hamilton and Mercedes winning from so far down the grid. It’s all strategy and Hamilton’s skill to keep the car on the track, though he did have some off track moments. Weren’t Ayrton Senna and Michael Schumacher known for their skill in less than ideal conditions? Even Gilles Villeneuve. Rain, hail or low grip, these legends proved they were head and shoulders above the rest with their driving skills. I’d say, to hell with these driver opinions. It’s the interest we fans show that pays the show. So they better give us what we want. Am not saying all races should be this way. But it’s good to have such races in between.

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