Hamilton: Ask the drivers what tracks would work

Date published: July 17 2019

Lewis Hamilton

Lewis Hamilton says Liberty Media should consult the drivers before adding tracks to the calendar, revealing the GPDA wants a say.

Last week Liberty Media announced that they had signed a new deal with the British Racing Drivers’ Club, securing Silverstone’s place on the calendar until 2024.

The new deal was applauded by many with Silverstone doing its part on Sunday as it delivered one of the best grands prix of this season.

With racing from the very front to the back of the field, Hamilton says the Northamptonshire track is the sort of circuit that Formula 1 needs to visit.

And he reckons Liberty Media should in future consult the drivers before agreeing to race at any given circuit.

“In the history of the sport, the drivers have never been a part of the decision-making in terms of advising on tracks,” the Mercedes driver said. “Yet, we know better than anybody which track we can overtake (on) and which track we can’t.

“I don’t know who does the selection and I know it’s not that they always have a ton of tracks in every country that are possible to race a grand prix – but there are ones that they’re selecting for the future that we’re going to have not such great racing, the ones that are on the calendar that aren’t great.

“People always ask me which are my favourite track and this is one of them because you can follow. It’s just spectacular with the high speed.

“Austin, Texas is built like that, as a new circuit. But then we’ve got places where you just can’t follow and its like a train.

“What would you prefer? Having a race in those countries just for the sake of having a race – or do you want a great race like this? If so, then we need to look at the different options in the different countries.

“I think the really cool track they used to have in Hockenheim – and it still is awesome – but the big, long one they used to have as quite unique. There was always good racing there but they changed it. Austria was great but I think the old track was even better from what I was told by Niki.

“So, that’s something, hopefully the GPDA can be part of in this next step in 2021 rules. We can be a part of advising on that. We’re there to help make the sport better.

“If they’re open to… we’re happy having the grands prix in these different countries but if they’re open to the idea of changing or adapting some of the circuits or using a different circuit in the countries, then we should look into that.”

Next season F1 will head to Zandvoort for the return of the Dutch GP and while the stands are expected to be packed given the Max Verstappen effect, many drivers including Hamilton have voiced their concerns over what sort of racing – if any – the circuit will provide.

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