Ex Mercedes driver and team mate to Lewis Hamilton, Nico Rosberg sees two major problem areas in Formula 1 that Liberty are already trying to address: high costs and lack of overtaking.
“There’s just too much aero” criticised the 2016 World Champion when the rule changes that came into effect for the 2017 season, upping the levels of downforce in a misguided strategy to improve lap time.
“Sometimes, it’s impossible for a faster guy to get past” laments the German.
“I looked at my father’s Formula 1 racing car in Monaco, that was all ground effect, all the aerodynamics took place under the car, they could drive the all the way to the transmission chasing a competitor because it was there was no aero on the top of the car, so that’s the direction they need to take, and I hope they can do it for 2021. ”
Rosberg drove a show run with his dad Keke Rosberg as part of the Monaco Grand Prix build up. Keke in his Williams FW08 from 1982 was the last generation of the so-called wing cars with huge diffuser tunnels under the side pods. So great was the downforce level, teams often removed the wings as they were totally unnecessary. There has been much debate as to whether this form of downforce should return to Grand Prix racing.
The wing cars were banned for safety reasons from 1983, because they had become too fast for the safety standards at the time. Since then, the basic aerodynamic principle of Formula 1 cars has not changed and a large percentage of downforce is generated ‘over body’, creating issues of turbulence when a car follows another.
“That’s all we need for fun!” says Nico, “we need side by side duals, wheels touching – things like that – and this is F1’s biggest problem, unfortunately, things are not going right right now.”
“Liberty knows what entertainment is all about. They do a good job with concerts, for example, to inspire the young people in a different way – through music – that’s a good approach – it’s true here. ”
Turning his attention to Max Verstappen’s hapless crash at Monaco, demoting him to the back of the grid for the start of the race, Rosberg feels that it’s unlikely the young Dutchman will ever learn:
“He was faster than Daniel Ricciardo and then he crashed at the dumbest moment,” the 2016 World Champion told RTL.
“He had an almost identical crash in 2016. I wonder if Max is too confident – risking too much. If you’re doing that, there is no track that bites you in the ass more than Monaco.”
“He hasn’t seemed to learn at all. It’s already the fifth time this year but it’s his fourth season in Formula 1. You can’t really say it’s inexperience. It’s a very dark moment for Max.”
“At the moment everything is going wrong for him but I don’t have much hope for him anymore.”