Race saves the day at Saudi Arabia GP: talking points Car News

So even where the odds usually turn in his favor, it seems to have let Hamilton down by now. Like Fernando Alonso and Daniel. Ricciardo lost power, the safety car interlude Hamilton needed to negotiate his only pit stop and still score some good points looked set to fall in his way. Instead, a Virtual Safety Car (VSC) was used – although it left the marshals worryingly vulnerable as they recovered cars alongside others still traveling at a decent pace – and Hamilton was forced to stop in full race conditions. Under the circumstances, a single point for 10th was all he could muster.

Schumacher benched by Haas

F1’s ability to surprise knows no bounds. A messy race marked by safety cars and red flags was expected, but instead the second Saudi GP went mostly smoothly. Nevertheless, concerns over this fast street track remain – and were heightened by Mick Schumacher’s high-impact crash in qualifying. The German lost his Haas on a sidewalk, then crashed into a bare concrete wall. He was lucky that modern F1 cars wrapped around their drivers so well.

Schumacher was declared fit to race, but his team benched him to save the car for Australia. It goes against the natural instinct of racing teams – but at the start of the season, spare parts are scarce and cars are being shipped directly from Jeddah to Melbourne. If Mick scores at Albert Park, as well as he could, the cautious approach will pay off.

The boycott threat

So were the drivers serious about withdrawing from the Grand Prix after Friday’s missile attack? Naturally, it rattled everyone in the paddock as Yemen’s Houthi rebels took their war with the Saudi kingdom too close to the F1 breakaway bubble.

Security assurances from F1 and government officials did not fully wash away, for good reason, and the drivers were locked in talks until Friday night and into the wee hours of Saturday before finally agreeing. of running. Few people would have blamed them if they pulled the plug, though the consequences could have been unsettling in a variety of ways. Instead, the sport’s happy distraction from the depressing ugliness of the real world held firm.

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This notice was published: 2022-03-28 05:15:47

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