Japanese Grand Prix: FIA launches review after Pierre Gasly avoids collision with re-waxed car on track

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Sergio Perez, Sebastian Vettel, Fernando Alonso and Lando Norris all expressed anger after the race

Sergio Perez, Sebastian Vettel, Fernando Alonso and Lando Norris all expressed anger after the race

The FIA ​​has confirmed it is launching a review into the disposition of a re-waxed car that avoided a high-speed collision with Pierre Gasly at the Japanese Grand Prix.

Several F1 drivers expressed their anger after the accident, with Sergio Perez describing it as “the lowest point we’ve seen in the sport for years” and Sebastian Vettel claiming the authorities were “lucky” there were no deaths or serious injuries. were avoided.

Following feedback from drivers after the race, the FIA ​​confirmed a thorough investigation to “ensure continuous improvement of processes and procedures”.

Carlos Sainz crashed in heavy rain on the opening lap of Suzuka and dramatic video footage showed Gasly speeding past the tractor that had been sent to retrieve the Ferrari.

Jules Bianchi died after a similar accident at the same track in 2014 and an emotional Gasly later told Sky Sports that the moment had left him fearing for his life.

“I’m extremely grateful to be here and tonight I’m going to call my family and all my loved ones and this is the result,” said the Alpha Tauri driver.

“I walked two meters from that crane and if I had been two meters to the left I would have been dead.

Pierre Gasly explained to Sky Sports how he feared for his life

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Pierre Gasly explained to Sky Sports how he feared for his life

Pierre Gasly explained to Sky Sports how he feared for his life

The Grand Prix was red-flagged for more than two hours as heavy downpours eased before Max Verstappen won a shortened race to claim the drivers’ world championship.

But even on a bank holiday for Red Bull, their driver Perez could not hide his anger at the danger Gasly was facing.

“This is the lowest point we’ve seen in the sport for years,” Perez told Sky Sports.

“What happened today just makes me angry. I just hope we never see this situation again in sports.”

He added: “We saw what happened here a few years ago with our friend Jules and I absolutely do not care what the reason for it was. This should never happen again, never in any category.”

Sergio Perez expressed his anger after the race

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Sergio Perez expressed his anger after the race

Sergio Perez expressed his anger after the race

McLaren driver Lando Norris insists that whatever the outcome of the FIA ​​review, there can be no compromise on driver safety.

He said: “I think it’s quite clear that this can never happen again in Formula 1. Especially when on this track, as many years ago, we lost a life.

“It’s a little crazy. I really don’t understand how it happened. I don’t know who approved it and who allowed it to happen. We risk enough trying to go out there and put on a show.

“You couldn’t see anything, I mean literally nothing, and we take enough risks in these conditions, so when you have something like this, it’s just mind-boggling to me how someone could choose to do that and not know the obvious consequences , which may have on us.

“I don’t think there’s a lot of conversation to be had, especially from us drivers.” I think we’ve made it clear that it should be pretty easy how to fix it, and that’s so it never happens again.”

Vettel is calling for a range of necessary changes

Sky Sports F1's Paul di Resta and Karun Chandhok look at how close Pierre Gasly was to the tractor

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Sky Sports F1’s Paul di Resta and Karun Chandhok look at how close Pierre Gasly was to the tractor

Sky Sports F1’s Paul di Resta and Karun Chandhok look at how close Pierre Gasly was to the tractor

Vettel is one of seven current drivers who raced at Suzuka in 2014 when Bianchi was involved in a fatal collision with a vehicle.

And the Aston Martin driver insists the sport needs to learn more lessons after Sunday’s incident, highlighting the dangers drivers currently face in wet conditions.

Reflecting on what the sport has learned since 2014, he told Sky Sports: “Probably not enough after what happened here today.

“There are many things that led to this circumstance that we need to understand.

“First the whole grid starts with the wrong tyre, which is all our fault but nobody’s fault because we are in the same pressure position.

“We have an intermediate tire that is much faster than an extreme tire, but the extreme tire is the condition tire, but it is so slow that you are forced to go to the next tire. This needs to be improved. That would have solved the problem.

“We can’t race when there’s a little water on the track because the water drainage is probably not good enough and we’ve known that for years.

“One thing led to another and we had a crash where Carlos took off. Visibility is next to nothing when you’re inside the car, followed by the spray.

“We’re lucky that nothing happened, but we have to understand and make sure that it just shouldn’t happen.”

The Sky Sports F1 team discuss why there was a recovery vehicle at Suzuka during the safety car period

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The Sky Sports F1 team discuss why there was a recovery vehicle at Suzuka during the safety car period

The Sky Sports F1 team discuss why there was a recovery vehicle at Suzuka during the safety car period

Ferrari driver Sainz, who was innocent of the spin that caused the accident, highlighted the lack of visibility the drivers encountered on a rain-soaked track.

He said: “Even behind the Safety Car we’re going 100 or 150km/h and still at those speeds we can’t see anything.

“If a driver decides to go a little bit off the racing line or has a little aquaplaning or has to change a switch on the steering wheel and goes a little bit off the line and hits a tractor, it’s all over.

“I still don’t know why we continue to risk, under these conditions, having a tractor on the track. You were going to flag him anyway, so why risk it?’

Alpine’s Fernando Alonso also highlighted the visibility issues, pleading with the FIA ​​to change its approach in the interest of safety.

“I didn’t see the tractor,” he said. “That’s the visibility we have in the car.

“I didn’t see Carlos and I didn’t see the tractor. There is no visibility, so the last thing you expect is to see a vehicle on the track.

“I only saw it on TV but I was amazed when I saw it because I didn’t see anything in the car.

“After 2014, we more or less agreed it would never happen again and today it happened, so we certainly need to clear that up.

“We must all improve together to make sure today is the last, last, last time.”

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