Due to poor visibility, the Formula One Belgian Grand Prix was never green flagged on Sunday. Gasly wants the FIA to address this rain spray issue that prevented the event from taking place.
When racing on a wet track, specific Pirelli tires are manufactured to evacuate as much water as possible to avoid the drivers sliding or being caught in other unpredictable and difficult situations like aquaplaning.
The water evacuated by the cars is then sent up in the air by the rolling movement of the pneumatics and creates the famous spray effect that was clearly displayed in yesterday’s Belgian GP. Drivers were unable to see who was preceding, even if the two of them were separated by just a few dozens of meters, due to the excessive proportions this phenomenon took, even under a safety car procedure.
Gasly had a clear opinion on what happened yesterday and thinks the drivers have to manage the conditions, even the trickiest, but just cannot afford to take the risk of causing a dangerous collision due to the lack of visibility. The Frenchman wants solutions, either to reduce spray or to make cars more visible under the rain.
“The problem is you always rely on all the guys in front of you to stay on track and go at a similar speed that you’re going. Because if someone is stopped and you arrive at 200-250km/h, visibility was about 30 meters,” Gasly said.
“If a car stops on track for whatever reason or crashes and many other cars are coming right behind we know the consequences if a car gets T-boned or something like this.
“Once you see the car at 200-250 there’s no way you’re stopping. We’ve seen enough horrible things here on this track.”
The Rouen native emphasized that work can be done regarding this aspect to avoid any similar frustrating Grand Prix in the future. The more visible the cars will be or the smaller the spray effect will become, the more Formula One will be able to tame weather conditions and send drivers on track without questioning the visibility.
“I think we should work on trying to reduce the spray behind the cars because that’s the real thing. When I was watching the medical car, obviously going at much lower speed, but the spray is a lot less than what we do with our cars.
“So I think that’s one area where F1 should focus on for the next years, because if you reduce the spray and you have better visibility then okay, conditions are very tricky, you may have to aquaplaning, you may have a lot of sliding, you might be very slow.
“But then after it’s up to us drivers to be at the limit of the grip we have, but at least we see. And on Sunday the problem was the visibility.”