Drivers, fans furious as chaotic Brazilian GP halted again
The rain-lashed Brazilian Grand Prix was red-flagged to a halt for a second time at Interlagos, prompting dismay by drivers and anger amongst frustrated spectators.other sports Updated: Nov 14, 2016 00:00 IST
The rain-lashed Brazilian Grand Prix was red-flagged to a halt for a second time at Interlagos on Sunday, prompting dismay by drivers and anger amongst frustrated spectators.
The red flag was brought out on the 20th lap and again eight laps later as heavy rain caused chaos to the potentially title-deciding race.
The cars had been back out lapping behind the Safety Car for eight laps following an earlier red flag interruption when Kimi Raikkonen crashed on the main straight in his Ferrari.
Raikkonen was unhurt and walked back to the pits.
The crowd reaction continued as the cars returned to the pit lane with many whistling and giving the event the thumbs down.
“I don’t know why we are stopping, its not that wet now and I don’t know we’re stopping,” said race leader and defending champion Lewis Hamilton, who is seeking victory to keep alive his defence of the title.
“The track is fine. Its extreme wet conditions. Normal.”
Hamilton had led ahead of his Mercedes team-mate championship leader Nico Rosberg from the start until the second red flag after 28 of the scheduled 71 laps.
Frenchman Romain Grosjean had crashed in his Haas on the pre-race installation and formation laps and was out of the contest before the start.
“From hero to zero in less than 24 hours. I feel so bad for the guys... I wasn’t even flat-out,” said Grosjean, who was seventh on the grid.
Swede Marcus Ericsson crashed after 12 laps in his Sauber, losing control at the start of the straight.
His car ended up parked across the pit-lane entry, blocking the road, but both Red Bull drivers steered round his vehicle to enter the pits.
They were reported to be under investigation by the race stewards as the race continued before Raikkonen’s high-speed accident.
Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo was handed a five-second penalty while Williams driver Felipe Massa, in his last home race, received the same punishment for overtaking before the Safety Car line.