Brawn defends half-points, calling it a needed “reward”

SPA, BELGIUM – AUGUST 29: The FIA Safety Car leads Max Verstappen of the Netherlands driving the (33) Red Bull Racing RB16B Honda on the formation lap during the F1 Grand Prix of Belgium at Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps on August 29, 2021 in Spa, Belgium. (Photo by Lars Baron/Getty Images) // Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool.

Formula 1 managing director Ross Brawn defended the decision to award half points after only three laps behind the Safety Car at the Belgian Grand Prix, calling it a needed “reward” for the qualifying heroics on Saturday.

The decision, which led to backlash from many within the paddock, including the drivers, was criticized mainly due to the absence of real racing cars. Brawn admitted that despite the non-ideal decision, it would be unfair not to reward someone for their qualifying when the race cannot go on.

“It’s not ideal, but if we can not reward someone for the race, reward him for his bravery in qualifying,” Brawn said.

“The FIA ​​tried everything they could, sending the cars to the track twice behind the safety car to assess the conditions. The problem was not so much the intensity of the rain but more its consistency which led to very poor visibility.”

The torrential rain lasted throughout the weekend, and while Brawn admitted it was a real let-down for the fans present, it would be absurd to continue racing despite the consistently poor visibility, putting drivers at risk.

“At the end of the day, safety comes first. And it was not safe enough to continue racing. So the FIA ​​did the best it could under very difficult circumstances. difficult, which we had not encountered in decades,” Brawn explained.

“It is rather rare to see a weekend with such intense weather, so regularly. Every effort has been made to start the race normally and safely. There is a window in which you can fit the car. safety, but it was not possible.”

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