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Martin Brundle

The judges were more active than the contestants

At last weekend’s Austrian Grand Prix, the hosts were regularly signing penalties, to which Martin Brandel, a former competitor and Sky reporter, responded that they were more diligent than the competitors.

The Marshals were so busy enforcing the track limits at the 2022 Austrian Grand Prix that they did not ignore even the slightest infraction, and their actions proved divisive.

Martin Brandel claimed on Sky Sports that “the hosts were busier than the riders at the weekend in Austria”, before explaining their decisions to Spielberg.


“This is the situation with competition judges, and there is usually some kind of opinion and interpretation” – Tell Brandl. While the stewards at Silverstone were generally lenient and liberally applied the ‘let them race’ mantra in terms of limits and defensive tactics, a week later the rules were meticulously interpreted.


“For the most part, I fully support this,” he continued, “and let me explain why.” “Many people thought it absurd that the FIA ​​reported 43 separate cases of track limit violations during the race, and several five-second penalties were handed out.”

Turns 1, 9 and 10 (turn 8 is not mentioned, as Perez received a penalty in qualifying), so a 20-car field in a 71 lap race can go up to 4,260 times through these three turns, meaning that the violation 43 isn’t exactly extreme.”

“I totally sympathize with the drivers because looking from the high cockpit side of these very large cars across the Halo and through those weird front wheel bonnets at speeds up to 150 mph (241 km/h) it’s not at all easy to tell that the tire contacts are They are completely within the white lines or just above the white lines at a minimum.”

“But we need equal opportunity and fairness, and skill and accuracy should be rewarded, provided there is consistency. If you can’t keep your car on exactly the right track, you have to leave a little space,” Brandl said.

The referees also handed out a penalty kick to George Russell after colliding with Sergio Perez on the first lap and to Pierre Gasly touching Sebastian Vettel later, and although both incidents looked alike, Brandel agreed more on the second.

He also encountered difficulties

“I thought Russell’s penalty kick for hitting Sergio Perez in the fourth round on the first lap was too harsh,” he said. “I did 10 laps in my 1992 Benetton F1 at the weekend in Austria and it reminded me of how unpredictable, tight, twisting and demanding it is in Turns 3, 4, 6 and 9 on this track.”

Martin Brandl
Brandel and Benetton at the Legends Parade at Red Bull Ring | Photo: Philip Platzer/Red Bull Content Pool

“At the start of a race full of fuel and the front tires not quite as warm, you will always be off into Turn 4 and going outside is a risky strategy, especially with getting out of a corner that is constantly tight.”

“I thought George did everything he could to get the inside lead and make way, and there was room for Sergio outside too. On the other hand, there is a reasonable argument that the competitor coming from the inside can always take the gas or even the brakes. But they won’t.” The former Formula One driver explained.

“Forty-five minutes later, in normal racing conditions, Pierre Gasly found Sepp Vettel in similar circumstances and I thought the penalty was fair enough. Sepp could not have given more space to Pierre on the inside,” Brandel argued.

There was also a problem with Parc Ferme

Another incident considered by the judges at the end of the competition, which could have jeopardized the final result, was when it appeared that Some of the first three people entered the Park Fermi area. Cases were eventually punished with fines.

He stressed that “there should not be anyone from any team.”

“Everyone fully accepts that if your car is a fraction wider, or a fraction lighter, or your engine is much larger than the rules require, you are immediately disqualified,” Brandel said.

“If the FIA ​​is at a point where they are tightening all the other regulations, I support that, and I’d say we should just ignore the track restrictions because it’s annoying and makes absolutely no sense.”

“As long as it is applied consistently and can certainly be resourced to have the tools to clearly define that for the crucial fans and everyone else,” the nine-time Formula One podium rider concluded.


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