Russell begins to needle Bottas: the crash has raised the psychologycal pressure on the drivers
Track limits need to be debated and hopefully removed
The cars based on high rake from the last year (like Ferrari and Mclaren) have gained the most
Hamilton’s questionable manouvers still not noted by race direction
Verstappen confirms his strength in F1 2021 Imola GP.
Ferrari returns home from the Made in Italy and Emilia Romagna GPs with a fourth place for the Monegasque and fifth for Carlos Sainz. The Italian side remains outside the podium positions, but the awareness is that the result at Enzo and Dino Ferrari counts enormously more than that of Sakhir, because the SF21 showed a potential that had not been seen in Bahrain.
Red Bull to fight back Mercedes for all 2021?
Verstappen‘s getaway on a slippery grid was sublime; he passed Hamilton at the first chicane on Lap 1 and was rarely troubled thereafter. The drama at Imola was largely in the Dutchman’s rear-view mirror, as Hamilton slithered off the damp track on Lap 31 and barely crawled out of the trackside gravel trap before an enormous accident involving his Mercedes team-mate Valtteri Bottas and George Russell of Williams saw debris strewn all over the circuit, forcing the race to be red-flagged and suspended for 25 minutes.
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Hamilton, who ended up in the gravel after trying to lap as quickly as possible in Imola, was destined to attract the attention. More than anything else the way he pulled out of the woe generated a lot of controversy. Hamilton, in fact, put the car in reverse to get out of the situation in which he was stuck. Many have harshly criticized the decision not to impose a penalty on him for a maneuver that, in their opinion, could have been very dangerous.
But why wasn’t Hamilton penalized?
First of all, let’s take a look at the regulation. Reversing is prohibited in the pitlane, while in the rest of the cases the usual, infamous article 27.3 applies, which allows you to regain the track “in the conditions in which it is safe to do so”. Which, needless to say, means everything and nothing. The discretion in applying this legislation rests with the race direction, called to settle the gray areas of the vast F1 sporting regulations. To explain why Hamilton escaped, F1 race director Michael Masi, revealed that Lewis was not penalized because in the course of the maneuver of discord, he was helped by his engineer of track, Peter Bonnington.
The role of Bono on Hamilton’s manouvre.
The good Bono, in short, behaved like a diligent passenger in everyday life, giving indications on how to get out of trouble without getting into others, potentially much worse. Hamilton, silent in his total concentration, let himself be led by the voice of his engineer, who first warned him of the arrival of Alonso and Mazepin and, subsequently, of the passage of Sainz, Gasly, Vettel and Ricciardo. Afterwards, Lewis launched into the comeback, that kissed by luck, which led him to the second step of the podium. And the fact that he was assisted by the trusted Bono prevented the race direction from opting for a penalty.
How was the Ferrari race?
In the wet, Ferrari no longer looks bad. Last year, Ferrari was disastrous with wet tires, with the SF1000 even worse on wet track than on dry conditions. Now the SF21 looked strong: of course the increased load helped, and cars like Ferrari and McLaren which used to have higher rake on the past are now less penalized by the new aero rules for 2021.
McLaren, Ferrari and Mercedes: the top speeds.
McLaren at the speed trap managed a top speed of 293.0 km / h with Lando, while Charles reached 291.3, in line with that of Verstappen and Hamilton both capable of 291.8 km / h.
Hamilton latest to try 18-inch tires at Imola for 2022.
Lewis Hamilton tested Pirelli’s 18-inch 2022 tire compounds at Imola on Tuesday, becoming the latest driver to test the larger tires and making Mercedes the third team to sample the new rubber.
After finishing second at Imola – shaking off a trip through the gravel that cost him a shot at victory – Hamilton returned to the track on Tuesday and continued the Pirelli 2022 tire test program with 55 laps in the morning, as Formula 1 prepares to switch from the current 13-inch tires for next season.
The reigning champion will turn more laps on Tuesday afternoon, before Valtteri Bottas takes over on Wednesday.