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Vettel calls F1 radio restrictions “complete bulls***”


Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel has called the current restrictions on radio communications in Formula 1 “complete bulls***” ahead of further revisions of the rules for this weekend’s Hungarian Grand Prix.

Mercedes’ Nico Rosberg was penalized in the British Grand Prix two weeks ago after the team was deemed to have broken the radio rules designed to place greater onus on drivers to manage their own races.

Mercedes claimed its messages were within the rules as Rosberg was on the verge of suffering a terminal gearbox failure, but opted against appealing the decision taken by the stewards.

Further tweaks have been made to the radio rules for this weekend’s race in Hungary, with drivers now required to come into the pits if they are informed of an issue that could end their race.

Speaking in Budapest ahead of this weekend’s race, four-time world champion Vettel expressed his dismay over the rules.

“It’s complete bulls***,” Vettel said. “I think all the radio issues we had are a joke.

“I watched the race afterwards and I found as a spectator it was quite entertaining to hear a driver panicking a little bit and a team panicking at the same time.

“I think it was a human element in a sport that is arguably very complicated and technical.

“So I think it is the wrong way.”

However, Rosberg himself does not think that the rules are an issue despite being denied three points at Silverstone as a result of them.

“Fans have said we are just puppets out there and just doing what the engineers are saying, now we’re trying this and I think it’s OK,” Rosberg said.

“It makes it more challenging for us out on track, which is good. It’s fine.”

Michael Schumacher’s son to make F1 practice debut at Nurburgring

F1 Mick Schumacher
Joe Portlock - Formula 1/Formula 1 via Getty Images
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MARANELLO, Italy — Mick Schumacher, son of the legednary seven-time champion, will have an official Formula One drive during an F1 race weekend for the first time next week at the Nurburgring, Alfa Romeo and Ferrari said Tuesday.

Schumacher gets the practice drive in an Alfa Romeo on Oct. 9 on his home track in Germany as a member of Ferrari’s young driver program, taking over Antonio Giovinazzi’s car for the first session of the weekend.

“I am overjoyed to get this chance in free practice,” Schumacher said in a statement. “I’m going to prepare myself well, so that I can do the best possible job for the team and gain some valuable data for the weekend.”

The 21-year-old Schumacher leads the Formula 2 standings after winning races in Monza and Sochi. He won the European Formula 3 championship in 2018 and tested a Ferrari F1 car in Bahrain in April 2019. He also has done demonstration runs in his father’s old cars, most recently this month ahead of the Tuscan Grand Prix in a championship-winning 2004 Ferrari.

Michael Schumacher holds the F1 record with 91 victories, which Lewis Hamilton is on the verge of tying.

Ferrari said two other drivers in its academy program will also get practice drives in Formula One.

Callum Ilott, a British driver who is second to Mick Schumacher in F2, will drive an F1 Haas at the Nurburgring on the same day as Schumacher. Russian driver Robert Shwartzman will drive in practice for the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix on Dec. 11, though Ferrari hasn’t said for which team.

The German round was added to the F1 schedule after the coronavirus pandemic disrupted the season and will be officially known as the Eifel Grand Prix after a nearby mountain range. The Nurburgring last hosted F1 in 2013.