The talking points from the German Grand Prix on Monday continues to be the incident between Williams F1 driver Felipe Massa and McLaren rookie, Kevin Magnussen. Mass continues to heap blame on the young driver for their clash and uses the occasion to warn other young drivers to calm down:

“Honestly I don’t remember in the past that this type of accident happening all the time,” he said.

“I was young and I even crashed many times, but I don’t remember following different rules to the ones we have.

“I don’t remember myself, Kimi [Raikkonen], Fernando [Alonso], being involved as young drivers in so many things like that.

“But anyway, it is just the way I think: I am not saying the young drivers don’t have the talent to be in F1, it is very good talent.

“But sometimes you need to understand that you cannot win the race at the first corner.”

In other news, there are some continuing conversation over the lack of a safety car when Sauber’s Adrian Sutil stalled his car on the front straight on lap 48. Lewis Hamilton was concerned for the safety of track workers:

“I was really concerned for the marshals, really concerned,” said Hamilton. “You come around that corner at serious speed, and then there are marshals standing not far from where you are driving past. For me that is the closest it has been for a long, long time.”

Some have accused Hamilton of simply calling for the safety car so he could close up Nico Rosberg’s lead and have a shot at the teammate. Sure, who wouldn’t want that kind of situation? But that may not be the most important thing. Even Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso, who would have suffered had a safety car appeared, said it would have been the right call:

“But being objective and honest, probably we were expecting a safety car in a normal situation. Sometimes they put the safety car out for a piece of front wing on the track and now it was a car there and it was not a safety car.

“It was a surprise. But if they didn’t put it out it was because they felt it was not a risk and they removed the car in a safe manner – I hope, I didn’t see it – and that was it.”

Track marshals ran across a live track in order to remove the car and if I’m honest, I thought it was a bit dangerous and like Alonso, I was waiting for the safety car call too.

There is also the issue of changed brakes at Mercedes that has a few teams questioning the legality of the move. Lewis Hamilton suffered brake failure during qualifying and the team took the opportunity to change brake manufacturers for Sunday’s race. The FIA deemed it a non-issue but Red Bull’s Christian Horner doesn’t quite see it that way:

“It is a change of car specification,” said Horner.

“If you change it like for like that is one thing, but if you change it for something that is made by a different manufacturer that has a different characteristic, as described by the driver himself as something different, then it is an interesting precedent.”

“That is why we need a clarification because obviously if you can do that, then what else can you change? It will be interesting to see what the justification of that allowance was.”

The cars were all in Parc Ferme condition and changing a part does seem to be against the regulations but it would have been down to the race stewards and apparently they felt it was not a big deal. Ferrari also considered protesting the change.

An F1 fan since 1972, NC has spent over 25 years in the technology industry focusing on technology integration, AV systems integration, digital media strategies, technology planning, consulting, speaking, presenting, sales, content strategy, marketing and brand building.
  • Massa is going all Will Power on us, me thinks. “It wasn’t my fault! It’s kind of hard for your rear tire to climb over the front tire of another car if, in your words, that car has hit you from behind, right, Phil? Maybe you should go ahead and watch a replay or two before you go spouting off about the other drivers. Just my two cents.

    • mike

      I wish he just moved to WSC like he was telling the media at a recent WSC event…another seat open for a real competitor instead of a finger pointer.

  • NeilM

    Yep. Magnussen was on the inside and had no place to go when Massa turned in on him. People always talk about Massa’s apparent bad luck, and of course sometimes sh!t just happens — like when a spring falls off the car in front and hits you in the face. But while I’ve always liked Massa, when sh!t keeps happening to the same person you have to observe that people make a lot of their own luck.

    As Louis Pasteur observed, “Chance favors the prepared mind.”

  • Antener

    I’m very new to F1 but noticed he said something along the lines of “when someone hits you from behind, it’s usually their fault.” But isn’t that exactly what happened with him and Perez in Montreal? Everything I’ve read says that incident was Perez’s fault but I agree with Neil that we tend to make most of our luck. And Massa does like to complain, doesn’t he?

    • He’s rarely putting his hand up and taking the blame. I could argue Canada for Perez and I think Felipe could have lifted just as easily as Mags so to be honest, I do agree that he is his own least common denominator.

      • Suku

        Either he is wrong in Canada or in Germany! He is not fault less in both the occasions.
        He knows Mag made a good start, from his steering action i assume he knows very well he cannot take hit the kerb, still he went for it. If he is not aware of Mag then why he gave room? (which was not enough still)

    • Ordinarily, it is the affirmative responsibility of the overtaking driver to make sure the pass is completed cleanly and safely. And any contact that happens is almost by definition the fault of the overtaking driver. However, in Canada, Perez changed his line just upon dropping anchor. That’s a big no-no which shifts responsibility.

      Someone posted a video of the start taken from the pit straight grandstands, and it seems to me that there is no way Massa could have even known Magnussen was that far up the inside, since Bottas’ car was blocking the sightline from left to right. I do not think that what happened would have warranted a penalty had the contact been such that Massa could have continued – it was a racing incident, nothing more. Massa caused the collision, but I do not ascribe ‘fault’ for it.

      However, for Felipe -who, let’s be honest, has a driving record that is not exactly awash in glory – to be so vocally blaming and chastising Magnussen is a bit much. Indeed, the stewards report in Germany was addressed only to Williams, which means they were not even investigating K-Mag.

  • MIE

    I’m interested to hear what Paul thinks of the Massa / Magnussen incident. There is always a concertina effect at the first corner of any race, and no-one (other than the leader) can go through as fast as they would do on their own. Massa did say he backed off to avoid hitting Bottas, and perhaps this is what caught Magnussen out?

    As to the brakes issue, Mercedes have agued it was for safety, and it appears they kept Brembo brakes on the rear of both cars with Carbone Industrie on the fronts (just changing to an earlier specification of disc that had proven to be reliable in the past).

    • Rapierman

      I say it’s 50/50. Neither one saw what the other was doing, and all eyes were focused on the road ahead. That just happened to be the result today.

  • Julian

    I was stunned that race control did not send out the safety car, surely any time marshals cross the track and push a car off the racing circuit warrants it. I don’t think I have seen anything like that for a very long time.

    I think they took a huge risk with the safety of the marshals, and I am not interested in who it may or may not have benefited, has anyone seen an explanation of race control’s reasoning?

  • NeilM

    Yeah, that lack of a safety car thing was really inexcusable.

  • Kevin eason of The Times noted on Twitter today that the stewards only investigated Massa and not Magnussen:
    “incident was not all it seemed. Massa blamed KMag but the stewards only investigated the Brazilian, not the Dane. Hmmm ..”
    I, too, am eager to hear Paul’s take on this incident.
    Here is Ant Davidson’s analysis:
    One thing for certain, Mr. Ricciardo is one lucky guy!

  • Rapierman

    Regarding the brake change: If I were Hamilton, I’d call for the change and say it was “force majeure”; it was reasonable to assume that the brake disc as constructed had a history of failing and thus compromised the safety of the driver.

  • Dunc

    I don’t see how Massa reckons it was ”different in his day”, for 40 years of watching F1 it has always been the concern that the riskiest corner was the first 1 on the first lap.
    I think they do better today than they used to.