Respect Italian journalist Leo Turrini has likened DRS to “methadone”, a solution to a problem that “doesn’t heal” the situation.
Formula 1 introduced DRS as an overtaking aid back in 2011 to mixed reviews.
DRS allows drivers to increase their straight-line speed by dumping rear wing drag through a slot that can be opened at set points on the track when they’re less than a second behind the car in front.
Leo Turrini rails against F1’s DRS
While the increase in the number of passes was welcomed by some, the sport’s purists railed against fake passes. Ironically of late, there’ve been complaints about DRS making overtaking too easy.
Turrini counts himself amongst the purists.
Writing in his blog, the Italian criticised DRS for taking spectators “for a ride” with its “fake” overtakes.
He even went as far as to liken it to “methadone”, which is a drug given to opioid-dependent patients to help with cravings and withdrawal.
“I have maintained since it was introduced that this is not a good thing. It has nothing to do with the idea I have of motor racing.
“Having said that, please. I don’t like being taken for a ride. The DRS overtaking is fake.
“Before DRS, I was there. Overtaking in F1 was practically never seen. To remember one or two a year, if it was good.
“I’ve been going to racetracks all my life. The complaint was a classic: no one passes anyone!
“I have enjoyed years, or rather decades, of “little trains” in Monza and elsewhere and everywhere.
“Anyone who tells it differently is lying, knowing they are lying. Or wasn’t there. Or fell asleep on the sofa immediately after the start, as Indro Montanelli once wrote, making Enzo Ferrari terribly pissed off.
“Honestly, racing was more boring back in the day. And that’s that. After that, DRS is like methadone. It doesn’t make you heal.”
Red Bull’s dominance and Ferrari’s late-race antics
He also weighed in on Red Bull’s dominance in the midst of a season in which the team has yet to be defeated on a Sunday while last time out at Monza, Max Verstappen set a new record for the most consecutive race wins as he claimed his 10th on the trot.
With some pundits questioning whether it has made for a boring season, Turrini has highlighted periods from yesteryear where the likes of McLaren, Williams, Ferrari and more recently Mercedes went on a charge.
“McLaren won the Drivers’ World Championship in 1984/1985/1986/1988/1989/1990/1991,” he said.
“Williams lost just two between 1992 and 1997 because there was a tragedy in between. Ferrari from 1999 to 2008 I don’t even remember. Vettel’s four-year stint with Red Bull. The Mercedes era from 2014 onwards.”
The other talking point from the Italian Grand Prix was Ferrari’s late-race tussle with Charles Leclerc attacking Carlos Sainz for third.
While Ferrari team boss Fred Vasseur defended the decision, saying it was his call, former F1 engineer Ernest Knoors believes a “stronger” team boss would have told them to hold station.
As for his point of view, Turrini said: “As long as they don’t throw themselves out and as long as they compete and achieve the best possible result for the Scuderia, in my opinion, the two can do whatever they want.
“If they had rolled instead, I would have eaten them raw.
“It’s the outcome that makes a difference, not the behaviour itself.”