Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari, Silverstone, 2016

Vettel: Radio restrictions are “complete bullshit”

2016 Hungarian Grand Prix

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Sebastian Vettel sharply criticised F1’s radio rules on the same day the FIA revealed tougher enforcement of the restrictions introduced earlier this year.

Asked for his view on the radio regulations in light of Nico Rosberg’s penalty after the British Grand Prix Vettel described them as “complete bullshit”.

“I think all the radio issues that we had I think is a joke,” he added.

However Vettel agreed there were some upsides to the restrictions. “I looked at the race after and I found, as a spectator, it was quite entertaining to hear a driver a little bit panicking on the radio, and the team panicking at the same time,” he said.

“I think it puts the element of human being in our sport that arguably is very complicated and technical. [But] I think that’s the wrong way.”

Vettel arrives in Hungary having scored just two points in the last two races and fallen to fifth in the drivers’ championship. “Looking at the results, it’s a fact that obviously we didn’t manage to score enough points to make ourselves in a better position by now,” he said, “but I don’t think we need to look constantly at the results we have had.”

“Here and there we could have done better but the bottom line is, we were not quick enough. We know we are not yet where we want to be, so that’s something we’re not happy with, but we are working on it very hard. If we could change it overnight we would, but sometimes is not that easy.”

“We had three races in which we didn’t finish, clearly it hasn’t gone the way we were hoping for, clearly we are not yet where we want to be, but equally it is not as bad. So I don’t think it’s the worst season I ever had.”

2016 Hungarian Grand Prix

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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 “Vettel: Radio restrictions are “complete bullshit””

    1. I have figured out an unintended consequence of the new rules… the teams can now slow down one of their drivers if they need to, whereas there was no way to do that before, at least not after the last pitstop. I could only see Ferrari being so cruel, but their drivers comply anyway… Vettel may have had multi 21 enforced on him though.

      1. A thought had occurred to me about such a scenario. If the driver figured out that that is the reason he is being called to drive through the pit lane; couldn’t he just ignore them and carry on driving? I would of thought he could. He would then have to worry about what his “punishment” from the team would be.

        1. Previously he could ignore, but my understanding is, not now.

    2. “There’s a lot of boring stuff on the radio that got banned, I don’t see the point, I think if you want to change it you should change the cars. I have no problem, let’s go back to V12s, manual gearbox, two buttons, one for pit speed limiter and one for radio just to confirm when we are coming in and other than that, not much electronics to look after, which there’s no point then to memorise a lot of things.”
      If only, Seb

      1. So your solution for the future of the sport is to permanently anchor it in the past to centre it around desires of the middle aged men who now make up the majority of its fanbase?

        1. Nerrrrrrrrrr nuff nuff @ anon

        2. That quote is by Vettel, and he was making a point.

        3. Absolutly anon. Screw XXI century, let’s go back to middle-age!

          1. The demographic data for the average respondent in the GPDA fan survey was a 37 year old European male. It is slightly off being middle aged, but in a number of major markets the average fan does tend to be middle aged – for example, in the UK market, which ranks amongst the largest in Western Europe, the viewing base of F1 has the highest proportion of middle aged men out of the major televised sporting events in the UK.

            Perhaps it could be argued that the point is that the most vocal fans, and those that tend to be more dominant when it comes to debating the future attitude of the sport and responding to the fan surveys, are those who are tending towards being middle aged.

            1. How dare you bring facts and stats to à tant session ?

        4. Why on earth do people think V12s are antiquated? The reason manufacturers are downsizing engines is due to ecofascist legislation around the world – gas guzzler tax, CO2 tax, displacement tax. The latest AMG and Ferrari V12 engines are among the most advanced in the world. The turbocharging and downsizing of engines has nothing to do with technological advancement and everything to do with manufacturers wanting to glorify their ecobox road cars by making some artificial parallels to formula 1 (as if open wheel, single seater racing with huge downforce has any relevance to road cars).

          Going back to V12s would increase the spectacle and drag forward engine development which is at the moment stunted by the regulations.

          1. Plus a million. Nicely summed up.

          2. lol wow

          3. “ecofascist”

            …. Sorry, I can’t take you seriously now.

          4. John M, your comment about the sport “going back” to V12’s seems to imply that the V12 was a dominant engine design when, in reality, it wasn’t.

            The history of the sport has overwhelmingly been dominated by V6, V8 and V10 engines, with most V12 engines tending to be abandoned fairly soon after proving to be uncompetitive designs. There was a brief spike in the number of V12 engined cars around 1991-1993, but that was more of a one off – by 1994, only Ferrari were left using V12 engines.
            Even Ferrari, who were most strongly associated with V12 engines in that era, didn’t really want to use a V12 engine for as long as they did – they’d already concluded at the end of the 1990 season that a V10 engine was superior and had already produced a conceptual design for 1991, but Fiat kept refusing to provide enough funding to develop a new engine until they finally agreed to the restructuring of the team in the mid 1990’s.

      2. @glue – I appreciate it’s not for all but if another series started and did just that, I think you’d find a lot of drivers and fans leaving F1 and watching that instead!

        1. Yes, I would definitely be one of the migrating viewers

    3. Hard to blame Vettel for his frustration. Seems like rules are just being made up as they go along rather than using forethought and logic.

      By the way, are the teams still allowed to tell the drivers when to drink?

    4. Maybe they should just ban all radio communication altogether save for two categories – “Box box box” and safety-related messages (Safety car information, car safety information).

    5. The FIA are a bunch of idiots who make stupid rules to justify their pay packets. They don’t care if they drive F1 into the gutter as people will keep paying to watch this nonsense.

    6. There is always a “0” to “1” scale. “0” is a complete ban of every kind of radio transmission, “1” is the total freedom, everything else is somewhere inbetween. “0” cannot be an option for safety reasons, “1” might not be a good solution, even if all radio transmissions would be completley free to air and accessible to everyone. If I remember correctly, all this radio misery started after Hailton and Rosberg started to ask questions about each others data during one race last year. I absolutley oppose this, this way I cannot support a clean “1”. The way the regulations restricted radio usage is much closer the “0”. And the citation of that the driver has to drive the car unaided shouldn’t really have to do anything with radio communication. It should mean, that nothing could be modified on the car from the pitwall digitally, that would mean aided, or at least for me. But why should a driver know dozens or hundreds of onboard computer settings? All his attention should be paid on driving the car as fast as he can. How is the experience of the viewers improved if they see a car struggling, that could do much better otherways, if information could be told. Why do we even need a communication channel, if we are not allowed to communicate? Is anyone interested in “come on, blue flag” and “good job, mate” messages? Because that’s how intensive the radio usage theese days. I would like the system allowed more information, closer to option “1”, however listing the few “don’t”-s, that really shouldn’t be there, and not listing the very few “do”-s that are allowed…

    Comments are closed.