JUNE 17, 2010
Montezemolo hits out at new teams again
Ferrari's Luca di Montezemolo has again questioned whether F1's new teams are of a sufficient standard to be on the Formula 1 grid.
Montezemolo's words come in the aftermath of a Canadian Grand Prix in which Ferrari driver Fernando Alonso lost positions to Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button after being caught behind slower cars, including Lotus driver Jarno Trulli and HRT's Karun Chandhok, who was on the line between Turns 6/7 when Button went past Alonso.
"Cars which perform at GP2 level should not be allowed to participate in F1 races because they are supposed to race on Sunday mornings..." Montezemolo told Italian newspaper Gazetta dello Sport.
"In Canada our car's pace was good enough for victory. Let's hope that, in future, there won't be mistakes in pushing a button nor in lapping cars that put us at a disadvantage, because we've already gone through that."
Previously this season, there were calls for a separate qualifying session at Monte Carlo due to fears of the slower cars impeding the front runners, especially when the slowest cars on the F1 grid were slower than five GP2 cars in first practice.
In an interview (click for interview), however, Lotus Racing chief technical officer Mike Gascoyne said: "I think leeway should be given to new teams. From Lotus's position, in Q1 in Monaco we were 2.3s off the quickest lap time and there's plenty of teams in years gone by who got nowhere near that and people didn't whinge."
"For me, Monaco really showed what a lot of hot air all that stuff was. There weren't any problems. The only problems, in fact, were in Q3 when there were only 10 of them out there and they all held each other up. A lot of the people doing the complaining should have spent less time whingeing and more time looking in their mirrors! I don't think there's any problem. We need to encourage new teams in the sport and I don't think we should have rules that penalise them."
Asked directly what he thought of Montezemolo advocating third cars from F1's more competitive teams instead of the new teams, Gascoyne replied: " I don't think he's right. I think the response to Lotus coming back has been great and it's universally accepted that it's been good for the sport."