Former F1 driver Derek Warwick, who was one of the stewards during the Singapore Grand Prix weekend, has defended the decision to hand Mark Webber and Fernando Alonso reprimands.
Webber and Alonso were censured after Webber rode back to the pits on Alonso’s car following the race.
Warwick, who started 162 races between 1981 and 1993, told The Telegraph stewards do want F1 to be entertaining and fun but that it must also be safe.
“We have become a bit sterile in many ways in Formula One. But we cannot put drivers at risk. If it had been done in a safer manner then it might have been viewed differently, but this was potentially very dangerous. You can’t have cars parked in the middle of a corner.”
Webber was accused of returning to the track without obtaining permission from a marshal, something he has since refuted. Alonso’s reprimand was for stopping on the racing line while he collected Webber, forcing other drivers to take avoiding action.
“A driver could easily have been hurt,” said Warwick. “I hope we’re not seen as killjoys. I want Formula One to be entertaining. I want it to be a spectacle.”
Webber’s reprimand was his third of the year, earning him an automatic ten-place grid penalty for the Korean Grand Prix next week.
Gabby Chaves is set to return to the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship at Watkins Glen International later this month.
The Columbian-American driver, who last competed in IMSA in 2016 – with the DeltaWing outfit – will sub for the injured Joao Barbosa – he hurt his wrist in a cycling accident earlier in June – in the No. 5 Mustang Sampling Racing Cadillac DPi-V.R in the Sahlen’s Six Hours of the Glen.
Chaves will partner Filipe Albuquerque and Christian Fittipaldi in the No. 5 Cadillac.
Chaves expressed gratitude for being asked to fill in, but kept his enthusiasm muted, noting that he is getting the opportunity ultimately because another driver got hurt.
“The first thing is of course that you never want to have an opportunity because someone got hurt, so this is an unfortunate circumstance with Joao having his injury,”said Chaves. “But I appreciate the opportunity to join the championship-leading team. Mustang Sampling Racing has had a strong start this year and hopefully I can help the team continue to have those kinds of results.”
Chaves added, “I love Watkins Glen, it is a great track and I am looking forward to racing the Cadillac Prototype there. I’m excited to be going back to endurance racing. With different classes all racing at the same time, there is a lot for the driver to deal with as you work through traffic. So I am looking forward to racing at the Glen again, and I really appreciate this opportunity with Mustang Sampling Racing.”
Chaves’ most recent IMSA event was the 2016 Sahlen’s Six Hours of the Glen, when he finished seventh in the Prototype class.
The No. 5 Action Express Cadillac currently sits tied with the sister No. 31 Whelen Engineer Racing Cadillac of Eric Curran and Felipe Nasr atop the IMSA standings, though Barbosa’s hopes of a driver’s championship are set to take an enormous hit with him missing Watkins Glen.