Deledda allowed to race in Monaco despite failing to qualify

Formula 2

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Formula 2 driver Alessio Deledda has been granted permission to start this weekend’s races, despite failing to qualify for them.

The F2 rules state drivers must lap within 107% of the fastest time in their qualifying group in Monaco in order to start the race. Deledda lapped six-tenths of a second shy of the 107% of the time set by Robert Shwartzman.

However following a meeting with HWA team manager Nicola Palarchi, Deledda has been allowed to take part in this weekend’s three races.

No explanation for the decision was given in the document issued by the stewards approving Deledda’s participation.

“The stewards summoned and heard the team manager in respect of the request for the start permission for car 23,” they noted. “Car 23 is given permission to start race one and race three.”

Today’s qualifying set the starting order for the first and third races of the weekend. Deledda will start those races from the rear of the field. The grid for race two is determined by the finishing positions for race one.

Formula 2’s rules state any driver who fails to meet the 107% requirement will only be allowed to start the race “under exceptional circumstances… which may include setting a suitable lap time in a previous free practice session.” However Deledda’s quickest time in practice was one-and-a-half seconds slower than his best qualifying time, which was 3.4 seconds slower than that of any other driver.

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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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22 comments on “Deledda allowed to race in Monaco despite failing to qualify”

  1. I guess he does bring in a lot of money? Sigh. I guess that is also part of motorsport.

  2. Do we know if there was an extenuating circumstance? Something wrong on the car? He had his boots on the wrong way round? Six tenths off round Monaco is quite a bit, it’s not that he was close.

    1. RandomMallard (@)
      20th May 2021, 16:49

      @bernasaurus I would hope there is some kind of mitigating circumstance. I’m prepared to give him the benefit of the doubt over that…

  3. It is a pity that Deledda is allowed to race despite not making the 107% rule with no real excuse. It is a mystery why he is in Formula 2 at all, he was a recurring carrier of the red lantern in the lower classes.

  4. Maybe they rightly considered Deledda’s participation an “exceptional circumstance”

  5. This just seems wrong and potentially dangerous.

    In every other case of not applying 107% they’ve either been close or had done a decent time in practice.

  6. Whoever decided to allow him to race never knew he’s a reckless driver off-track.

    1. Maybe that’s why they are letting him race, after all you can’t go “off-track” in Monaco.

      1. I’m talking about that infamous video of him speeding at an Italian highway.

  7. Neil (@neilosjames)
    20th May 2021, 16:47

    I called him a perfect example of the phrase “waste of a seat” when he was announced in F2. I normally like being proved right, but when there’s a limited number of seats, all his performances are doing is further confirming the fact there’s someone else, far more deserving, missing out. Which is of course a great shame.

    1. RandomMallard (@)
      20th May 2021, 16:55

      Well the other seat at HWA is now held, from this weekend, by Jack Aitken. While he hasn’t been able to consistently prove himself in F2, he has shown occasional flashes of brilliance and probably deserves that seat. A seat that is probably being funded, in part, by the Deledda family, so by having him in 1 seat they allow HWA to actually hire a competent driver in the other. Similar to the Mazepins helping fund Ghiotto at Hitech last year or the Gelaels helping fund most of Sean’s teammates actually.

  8. Absent any justification, this feels like a tacit admission they don’t give the drivers anything like enough practice time before a qualifying session which determines whether they get to participate in the vast majority of the weekend’s running. I’m not saying they were right to waive the rules – it’s impossible to pass judgement when they’ve given no reason for the decision.

  9. … And Shwartzman was something like 4 tenths of Pourchaire, the actual polesitter.

  10. Even Lord Mahaveer didn’t miss the 107% time in his Monaco qualifying group. Seriously, how has this guy got an F2 drive?

  11. There is no point in having the 107% rule then is there. The FORTI rule as i know it was once important to ensure a somewhat similarly capable field of cars participating in the same race.
    This is a SPEC SERIES, everyone is on similar equipment so the justification for the rule is purely a judgement on the drivers, weeding out those unable to keep up, creating absolutely unnecessary danger for the other drivers and potential for unneeded damage to the other teams.

    Especially in Monaco

    1. This, 107% in a spec series… Sorry, whats the point?

      Guy is too slow. Atleast he can never make it to F1.

  12. @uneedafinn2win @jureo I think the spec series point is the most damning, unless of course there actually was something wrong with the car. A quick look at 96′ Monaco qualifying (Forti Rule) and Luca Badoer was nearly a second inside 107% from Schumachers’ Ferrari, in a car that still had manual gear shift, Montermini was comfortable as well.

    To be outside 107% in what is essentially the same car, isn’t really on.

    1. @bernasaurus I suppose it is possible that there could have been an issue with the car, as the latest generation of Formula 2 cars have developed a reputation for relatively poor reliability and inconsistent performance from the engines. However, if that were the case, you might have expected that to then be cited as justification, so it’s still not entirely clear.

    2. Not to be an anorak but Forti were running the FG03 by Monaco ’96 which had a Hewland semi-auto box…

  13. Wait a second… Mahaveer Raghunathan was able to qualify last time the race was held and Deledda wasn’t! Oh wow!

    1. “The Dark Side Of Feeder Series: Investigation Documentary – Coming soon December 2021.”

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