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Calls grow for radio clampdown to end


Formula 1 News - July, 2016

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Jul.12 (GMM) There are growing calls for F1 to scrap its "ridiculous" ban on technology-related driver coaching on the radio.

Although initially intending to appeal, Mercedes has now decided to accept the stewards' decision to demote Nico Rosberg from second to third place at Silverstone, after the German was told how to solve a gearbox problem.

But the team said in a statement: "During the coming weeks, we will continue discussions with the relevant F1 stakeholders on the subject of the perceived over-regulation of the sport."

Indeed, one Mercedes engineer said on Twitter that the current rules are "nonsense", adding: "If Nico gets a penalty for that radio communication, we might as well whip the radio out the car and save the weight."

Former F1 driver John Watson agrees.

"They should look at banning it all. Ban the whole bloody lot. Take the radio away from them altogether," he told the Guardian newspaper.

But Williams' Pat Symonds thinks that in a technical sport, it is self-evident that teams should be allowed to talk to their drivers.

"You're going to do tens of thousands of pounds worth of damage to the car because you can't tell a guy his brakes are about to fail? It's not just wrong, it's negligent."

F1 veteran David Coulthard said he even departed the British grand prix feeling angry.

"I have no view on whether it should have been a penalty because I have no interest in this and it has no place in sport," he wrote in the Telegraph.

"Bernie Ecclestone takes the view that any publicity is good publicity, but talking about something in frustration, is that really the scene setter we need?"

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