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George Russell

Russell demands FIA investigation over key F1 issue

Another race was hit by the problems at the Circuit of the Americas.

Russell US
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To news overview © XPBimages

Mercedes driver George Russell has called upon the FIA to find a way around 'get-out-of-jail-free cards' at certain circuits after track limits again proved a topic of contention at the United States Grand Prix.

The Briton was penalised in the Sprint for running wide and gaining an advantage at Turn 15 when overtaking Oscar Piastri's McLaren, this coming after the white lines at three corners had been widened following complaints from drivers after qualifying.

But Russell's penalty was minimised by his ability to drive off down the road after the overtake was completed, with many suggesting five seconds added is insufficient, especially for drivers in better-performing machinery.

Asked if there is a change in racing philosophy when tarmac replaces gravel and grass on the edge of a race track, Russell told media including RacingNews365.com: "It gives you that opportunity to... if there's gravel there and someone pushes you wide, you are going to end up in the gravel so you are not really planning to go there, whereas I was always intended to go around the outside, hoping he would leave me a bit of space and if he didn't, it would just push me away onto a bit of tarmac.

"You sort of worry about the consequences after.

"I don't enjoy racing like that and something does need to change. There are only three circuits in the whole season which are like that."

Russell responds to Norris criticism

Lando Norris was quick to point out Russell's own musings over track limit issues across the season in his role as Grand Prix Drivers' Association director before taking advantage at the Circuit of the Americas.

"At the end of the day we are all racing to the same rules," explained Russell when addressing his compatriot's remarks.

"Naturally, if you are racing in Monaco, you can't go beyond the limit because you'll end up in the wall whereas in Japan, you can't go over the limit because you'll end up in the gravel whereas [at COTA], your only consequence is running off onto a bit of tarmac.

"Monza, for example, I came out of the pits, went over the limit knowing I have got that get out of jail free card and the same in Barcelona.

"You don't want to have a get-out-of-jail-free card, so the FIA need to find a way to avoid that."

F1 2023 United States Grand Prix RN365 News dossier

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