Zak Brown questions FIA rule change

The FIA recently warned teams that they risk receiving a penalty if any of their personnel climb on the pit wall fence as their driver crosses the finish line.

Some iconic race finishes have been marked by teams celebrating on the pitwall fence as legends of the sport have crossed the finish line, claiming maiden wins and titles. 

These moments are set to be no more though after the FIA informed teams that officials are going to begin enforcing a rule that would see a penalty imposed on any team who has personnel climb the pitwall when the chequered flag is waved.

The decision to enforce the rule began at the Australia Grand Prix, as documented in F1 race director Niels Wittich’s pre-weekend event safety notes.

“It is forbidden to climb on pitwall debris fence at any time,” the document said, citing Appendix H, Article 2.3.2 of the FIA’s International Sporting Code.

Want to work in Formula 1? Browse the latest F1 job vacancies

“I’m not exactly sure what sparked the necessity to change it. I’m not aware of an incident,” McLaren Racing CEO Zak Brown said.

“That being said safety’s critically important to all of us and if they feel it’s potentially not safe and those are the rules then we’ll stick to them.”

READ: Toto Wolff admits plan to sell Mercedes stake and move to Thailand

Red Bull team principal Christian Horner sided with Brown in a rare moment where the pair were on the same page, rather than criticising one another. 

Article continues below

“I’ve thought it’s been a part of Grand Prix racing and we’ve achieved that 95 times as Red Bull Racing, and not once have we ever had an injury or looked like there is an issue,” Horner said.

“But you know, if they’re the rules they’re the rules,” he added.