Formula 1 managing director of motorsport Ross Brawn thinks the action, or lack of it, in the latter stages of the Mexican Grand Prix shows that the upcoming regulation changes can’t come quick enough so drivers can fight it out more.
With Lewis Hamilton’s tyres steadily running down, it provided an opportunity for the likes of Sebastian Vettel, Charles Leclerc, or Valtteri Bottas to try and take advantage to overtake. However, none were able to, and Brawn believes it is still far too hard for drivers to follow each other.
“It’s a shame that there was not much of a fight on track,” he wrote in his F1 column.
“Especially among the leaders, as everything was in place to deliver an exciting fight, revolving particularly around the potential duel between Mercedes and Ferrari on a track where overtaking is very possible.
“However, once again we saw that when cars and drivers are evenly matched, then it becomes really hard to not only overtake but to even get close to the car in front. Getting too close for a few laps could mean ruining your tyres, causing drivers to back off and let them recover before making another brief assault.
“This is nothing new, but it confirms once again that there is a need for a change in the regulations to enable cars to fight at close quarters.
“Change is potentially now not far off, at least on paper, given that in a few days, the FIA World Motor Sport Council will rule on the regulation package for 2021, which we presented along with the FIA.”
Brawn did reserve praise for Hamilton, though, saying it was the sign of a champion that he managed to win despite he and Mercedes not being at their best.
“He and his team proved they can win even when they don’t have the quickest package, a rare situation during the past five years.
“Lewis won thanks to the choice of a single pitstop and the realisation that track position is paramount. Those factors, combined with Lewis’ innate ability to manage the tyres, sealed a superbly executed win.
“In some ways, this race reflected the season as a whole – this year is the first in the hybrid era in which Mercedes’ technical superiority has been challenged, but at the same time the driver and team have found a way of getting the best out of their package, making the most of any unexpected circumstances and the mistakes of others. Record beating runs are built like this.”