Stewards told to be lenient in 'secret' F1 meeting

By on Tuesday, April 23, 2013

In a 'secret' meeting over the winter, it was agreed that stewards should impose less penalties in 2013 in order to spice up the action.

That is the claim on Tuesday of Germany's Auto Motor und Sport, reporting that the meeting with FIA president Jean Todt was attended by drivers including world champion Sebastian Vettel, team managers, Charlie Whiting and stewards.

"Has it been noticed?" wrote correspondent Michael Schmidt. "The drivers are being punished much less."

He said the outcome of the pre-season meeting was that stewards should be more lenient when it comes to applying penalties for on-track scraps, in order to entice the drivers to take more risks in the heat of exciting wheel-to-wheel battles.

Schmidt said it is undeniable that there have been "surprisingly few" drive through and grid penalties so far in 2013 as the result of obvious incidents.

"It has made the racing better," he wrote.

"You can feel that the drivers have more confidence. Rarely have we seen as much die-hard, wheel-to-wheel battles as we saw in Bahrain," added Schmidt.


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On this day
  • Sebastian Vettel won the 2009 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.
  • Gerhard Berger won the 1987 Japanese Grand Prix.
  • Mika Häkkinen won the 1998 Japanese Grand Prix.