Jos Verstappen believes that Formula 1 cars should be made "lighter" and also suggests circuit design changes to improve F1 safety. The weight of Grand Prix cars has ballooned since the adoption of the turbo hybrid engines, halo and other safety equipment to around 800kg. In recent years, it has led to some high velocity impacts, including for son Max at the 2021 British Grand Prix and twice for Mick Schumacher in '22 in Saudi Arabia and Monaco - with Schumacher's car splitting in two in the latter incident. While Jos believes that lighter cars are a must, two-time World Champion Max elaborated on some of the track changes he'd like to see.
As RacingNews365.com was shown during an exclusive visit to the Jeddah Corniche Circuit in 2022, major changes to the track have been made to improve visibility and run-off through the sweeping corners. "In Jeddah, the car now runs very low to the ground and that corner [Turn 10 where Schumacher crashed in qualifying], on the exit the kerb comes at you," Verstappen told Viaplay. "The angle of the kerb and the shape of it is also wrong for the current cars, because every time we all run and slide on it. "If you bottom out because of the car being so close to the ground, you can have a big off. "The radius of the corner is not great with very high speeds in that first sector and then the shape of the kerb needs to be different - or they at least need to fill it up behind the kerb so that you can ride it but don't fully bottom out and create a big impact. The actual wall that Schumacher hit in 2022 has been shifted back in the extensive track upgrades to create greater visibility for the drivers through the section.
GPDA talks with FIA and F1
The Grand Prix Drivers' Association (GPDA) has been vocal in recent times in a bid to improve safety and other aspects of F1, as Verstappen explains. "Three drivers from the GPDA will go to FOM and the FIA to discuss what we can do with the track. "[At that point where Schumacher hit the wall] there was no Tecpro [barrier] to crush the speed, and he went straight into concrete, which is not good. "There are a few little things that we can improve, as sometimes they forget about the little things - but the angles of walls for sure [is important]. "In practice or qualifying, you do a fast lap, slow lap, fast lap and slow lap again - you drive so slow to cool the tyres. "When you're driving on the streets at 80 kilometres an hour and someone arrives at 330kph, that is very dangerous. "If you had a normal straight there, you'd see the car, but you can't, so by moving the walls back it creates more space and the little improvements will help."