HomeSportsFormula 1Romain Grosjean offers new solution to F1’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix controversy

Romain Grosjean offers new solution to F1’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix controversy


Romain Grosjean has suggested that Formula 1 could learn from IndyCar and close the pits during a safety car period in a bid to avoid a repeat of the contentious ending to the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

Grosjean departed the F1 grid at the end of the 2020 season to take up a driver’s seat in the North American series.

Speaking about the controversial conclusion to the 2021 season, Grosjean revealed that he “really felt” for Lewis Hamilton after the Mercedes river was denied an eighth world title by Max Verstappen.

Verstappen was afforded the opportunity to pass Hamilton on the final lap with the benefit of fresher tyres, having pitted after the safety car was called for following Nicholas Latifi’s crash.

While the intervention of race director Michael Masi to allow lapped cars between the title rivals to unlap themselves has been more heavily criticised, Grosjean wonders if closing the pit lane while the safety car is in operation could prevent a similar scenario in the future.

“Is there a solution for the decision? Maybe you can close the pits during a Safety Car, as we do in IndyCar,” Grosjean posited on his YouTube channel.

“Then there’s no chance for one guy to get the advantage of another one. That could be an option.”

While admitting that he had sympathy for Hamilton, Grosjean believes that critics dismissing the season finale as “unfair” are overlooking the inherent competitive imbalance within the sport.

The 35-year-old for Renault, Lotus and Haas during his F1 career, starting 179 races and finishing on the podium ten times.

However the Geneva-born racer never won a Grand Prix, and believes that those driving for weaker teams do not have the same chance to compete.

“I really felt for Lewis in Abu Dhabi,” Grosjean explained. “As a spectator the last lap was super-exciting. It wasn’t fair. But is Formula 1 really fair?

“Sport should be fair, meaning you all have the same chance.

“Whereas if you’re in a Haas or Williams, you don’t have the same chance as a Mercedes or a Red Bull.

“So everyone’s saying it’s not fair, well, Formula 1 isn’t fair, guys.

“I’ve been racing 10 years in Formula 1 and I’ve had some really good cars, almost won some races and then the last few years just had no chance to win anything, not even to be able to podium.

“So that’s not fair because you train as hard as everyone else, but you don’t have the same tool.”

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