A downpour which coincided with the start of today’s race at Silverstone led to eight cars crashing at Luffield.
Alexander Rossi was the first driver to sail off the track at the wet corner. Most of the cars immediately behind him suffered the same fate, including Sam Bird, Nico Muller, Marco Sorensen, Nikolay Martsenko, Yann Cunha, Anton Nebylitskiy and Kevin Korjus:
Many of the drivers had attempted to weather the storm by staying out on slick tyres as the rain fell.
The rain had already claimed race-leader Kevin Magnussen. The race had to be stopped and restarted as the marshals recovered the cars. Once it restarted new leader Will Stevens went off at Stow, leaving Jules Bianchi to win from championship leader Robin Frijns
These guys have a long way to go if they want to even consider getting a race seat in a higher Formula of racing. Racing in torrential rain on slicks doesnt work. You can get away with it in karts (just…!), but not in machinary like this.
I wouldn’t be so quick to rush to judgement, James. As sigman pointed out, we have seen Formula 1 drivers do exactly the same thing in the past. Half of the drivers here – Korjus, Bird, Rossi and Sorenson – have the potential to make it in Formula 1. It’s entirely possible that they were told to stay out on the circuit by they teams in anticipation of a red flag. The rules dictate that in the event of the race being stopped, the results would be counted from the lap before. If they pitted early and the race was red-flagged, they could have easily fallen out of the points, and so were told to stay out.
The whole field started on slicks, the track was dry. They did their warm-up lap and the race started. As soon as they’d roared off into the distance through Abbey, the skies opened and there was a short heavy downpour that came across where we were sitting (Club corner). It followed the cars up the western side of the circuit, soaking Vale and Club, all the way round to Luffield, but not the part of the track they were now on (Hangar straight).
By the time they all got round to Luffield on the next lap, the track was soaked but they had no idea, hence the multi-car accident red-flagged the race.
Not really the fault of anyone or anything but a short sudden downpour.