Near-Collision Chaos: Azerbaijan GP Stewards Investigate FIA Staff for Pit Lane Blockade
A heart-stopping incident at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix has raised eyebrows and prompted an investigation by the stewards. Esteban Ocon, the Alpine driver, faced a harrowing moment when he was forced to take evasive action to avoid hitting a group of FIA staff members obstructing the pit lane.
In a different way / The stewards of the Azerbaijan Grand Prix are looking into FIA staff who obstructed the pit lane, causing Esteban Ocon to take evasive measures to avoid hitting a group of them at the beginning of the pit lane.
Alpine’s Ocon began the race from the pit lane and drove the entire race on a single set of hard tires before making a pit stop just before his last lap.
However, as Ocon entered the pit lane, a cluster of FIA-approved photographers obstructed the entrance.
They barely managed to scatter as Ocon came into the pit lane and completed his pit stop.
The Azerbaijan GP stewards announced in a statement that they are investigating FIA staff for “obstructing the quick lane in the pit lane on the last lap” of the competition, even though the pit lane remained accessible.
Ocon expressed his confusion about the incident during his post-race interview with the media.
“Yeah, it’s not something we want to see,” he commented.
“I really don’t comprehend why preparations for the podium and ceremony are underway while the race is still on. There’s one lap remaining, and some drivers haven’t pitted yet, like Nico [Hulkenberg, who followed the same strategy as Ocon] at that moment.
“Approaching at 300 km/h and braking extremely late, I see people around – this is insane. Today’s situation could have resulted in a major accident. This issue definitely requires discussion, as it’s something we don’t want to witness.”
Ocon mentioned that he had to reduce his speed to dodge the staff, and he wouldn’t have “wanted to be the one caught in the middle there.”
“I must admit that the speed at which we approach that area, particularly so close to the finish line, missing the braking point would lead to a massive disaster,” he added.
“So, yes, it was an intense moment.”
“We should hold off on preparing the podium until all cars have crossed the finish line and we’re certain there’s no more racing in the pit lane. It’s not a complicated matter, it’s quite straightforward.”
FIA intervenes – Safety on the Line: Azerbaijan Grand Prix’s Alarming Pitlane Event Prompts FIA to Reassess Protocols
The stewards at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix have labeled the FIA as “fortunate” that no severe repercussions resulted from a hazardous pitlane event during the conclusion of the Baku Formula 1 race.
Esteban Ocon went into the pitlane for his compulsory tire change before the race’s final lap, having relied on a single set of hard tires throughout the race in anticipation of a late safety car or red flag.
Upon doing so, he came across a large assembly of media personnel and other individuals, as well as a belt barrier in the fast lane, which were set up in preparation for the parc ferme and podium ceremony. The FIA admits that such incidents typically occur at the end of races when the pitlane is still accessible, even though a driver could enter the pitlane before or on the final lap.
In this case, it should have been evident that Ocon needed to complete a required pitstop, but the situation occurred nonetheless.
The Baku stewards claimed that this incident resulted in a “highly dangerous situation” for those in the pitlane and deemed it “lucky that no severe consequences arose” from it.
The FIA team involved recognized the “critical” importance of ensuring a secure and orderly event and “voiced their remorse for the incident.”
The stewards instructed the representatives to immediately reevaluate relevant procedures and protocols in collaboration with F1 and the teams to “prevent such a situation from happening again.”
The FIA has acknowledged the stewards’ ruling and will modify the relevant processes before the upcoming Miami race next weekend.
Near-Collision Chaos Azerbaijan GP Stewards Investigate FIA Staff for Pit Lane Blockade 2023 Near-Collision Chaos Azerbaijan GP Stewards Investigate FIA Staff for Pit Lane Blockade 2023 Near-Collision Chaos Azerbaijan GP Stewards Investigate FIA Staff for Pit Lane Blockade 2023 Near-Collision Chaos Azerbaijan GP Stewards Investigate FIA Staff for Pit Lane Blockade 2023
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