FIA boss wants fewer races on the F1 calendar, GP of Austria and Qatar in danger

The FIA boss is done with the hassle surrounding track limits

What will we all remember from the Qatar GP? Verstappen's championship and the extreme heat of course, but also those damn track limits. Can't drivers just keep their cars within the lines or does it depend on the track? FIA boss Mohammed Ben Sulayem thinks the second. The difficulty in enforcing track limits could even result in fewer F1 races.

Regardless of the track limits, Ben Sulayem is in favor of fewer F1 races on the calendar. Asked about the possible entry of Andretti and Cadillac, the FIA boss said: 'The circuits should have room for twelve teams. I prefer that to the number of races being too high compared to the number of teams. We need more teams and fewer races.”

Fewer F1 races due to track limits

One reason to ban circuits from the calendar is the hassle with track limits. The most striking example of stupid track violations is the Austrian GP. There, twelve penalties were handed out for track limits five hours after the race. At the last race in Qatar, the drivers went too far 51 times and Pérez, Stroll and Gasly received time penalties. Never again, if it were up to Ben Sulayem.

Alonso just crosses the line in Austria and is not the only one | Photo: © Aston Martin

'We also had this problem in Austria, we had 1,200 [exceedances] there. I have to congratulate the stewards for noticing it, but is this the solution? No," the FIA boss told . According to him, it depends on the circuits. If circuits such as the Red Bull Ring and the Losail International Circuit do not intervene, severe measures may follow.

No improvements? No racing

Ben Sulayem: 'They [the circuit owners] have to improve the track themselves. I know they are reluctant to do that, but if they don't do it, then there is no race. It's that simple. They can't afford this. They have to do it with urgency, because it has to be done before next year. We can't afford it, especially on jobs where we see this all the time."

The FIA boss also has a possible solution for circuit owners: "One of the ways is to make the track slippery when you leave it." You would think that the simplest solution would be to lay down a gravel pit. "We have to be very careful with that, because we don't want anyone to get stuck," says the FIA boss. This would not be the best solution according to Ben Sulayem.

For another option, strangely enough, we have to look at the Paul Ricard circuit in the south of France. The test circuit is known for its large colored run-off strips. Several sections there have a special type of asphalt that makes cars shake. The shaking movement causes the car to slow down. So it is not beneficial for drivers to drive over this. Perhaps these kinds of interventions can save the Austrian GP.