Nico Rosberg and Nick Heidfeld have slammed 'dangerous' later race times in long-haul countries

    Director of Operations

    Number of posts : 794
    Country : UK
    Favourite motorsport : Formula 1, BTCC, MotoGP
    Joined : 2008-11-11


    Nico Rosberg and Nick Heidfeld have slammed 'dangerous' later race times in long-haul countries

    Post by Ross on 31st March 2009, 15:01

    Drivers hit out at twilight race times

    Drivers have expressed concern that the later start time in Malaysia this year could lead to visibility problems – especially if the weather is poor.

    Like the Australian Grand Prix, the Sepang event is getting underway at 5pm local time to make the television schedules more amenable for the core European audience.

    Williams's Nico Rosberg says he found the dwindling light to be a major problem in Melbourne, and fears a similar situation in Malaysia.

    “In Melbourne I found this a big concern as towards the end of the race the visibility was very poor, which increased the danger in my view as it was more likely that you could make a mistake," he said.

    The German reckons the organisers were wrong to pick a compromise time slot rather than following Singapore's lead and floodlighting the circuit.

    "I’d rather the race changed back to its original start time or became a proper night race – that would improve matters a lot," said Rosberg.

    His team-mate Kazuki Nakajima thinks the combination of dusk and rain could be the biggest issue at Sepang.

    “It was difficult with the low sunlight in Australia, especially as the light flickered and changed under the tree cover," he said.

    "We won’t have this type of shadow at Sepang, but there is a different issue which is the possibility of reduced light conditions mixed with the likelihood of rain, so for sure these late race start times will have a bearing on my approach to qualifying and the race.”

    BMW's Nick Heidfeld added that the previous early afternoon start time had offered a much better chance of good weather.

    "We've often experienced cloudbursts in Malaysia in the late afternoon and early evening," he said.

    "This year's schedule increases the chances that we will still be on the track at this time.

    "Hopefully it will still be light enough."


    Director of Operations

      Current date/time is 26th May 2018, 15:34