Drivers state removal of DRS zone in Melbourne affected overtaking

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA – APRIL 09: A general view over the circuit showing Sergio Perez of Mexico driving the (11) Oracle Red Bull Racing RB18 on track during qualifying ahead of the F1 Grand Prix of Australia at Melbourne Grand Prix Circuit on April 09, 2022 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images) // Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool.

The drivers think that the fourth DRS zone at the Albert Park Circuit would have facilitated overtaking during the Australian GP.

Ahead of the Australian GP, a new DRS zone was added at the Albert Park Circuit between turns 8 and 9, making it four at at the race track. However, after Friday’s practice sessions, it was removed for safety reasons.

Esteban Ocon thinks that the fourth DRS zone would have been useful for overtaking.

“We were very close but we couldn’t pass,” he told Motorsport.com.

“I think we were probably lacking that fourth DRS zone, to be fair. I mean it was dangerous probably to have it, but that was the place I was closest.

“To make a move at such high speed is risky, and I agree with safety that it is good to remove it, but that is probably what we lacked today to have a bit more of a show.”

Sergio Perez and Daniel Ricciardo agreed with Ocon’s comments.

“It was a shame they took the DRS out because I think the racing could have been a bit better with it,” Perez said.

“I would say we would have had a few overtakes into turn 9 with DRS there,” Ricciardo stated.

“I saw one lap when I think Lando [Norris] was behind Kevin [Magnussen] not long after the restart, he got pretty close into turn 9. I think with DRS he would have got him, so perhaps there was maybe a bit more on offer with that fourth zone.”

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