Formula 1: Kimi Raikkonen calls for changes to 'joke' F1 rules

By Andrew BensonChief F1 writer at Hungaroring
Kimi Raikkonen
Kimi Raikkonen finished sixth at the Hungarian Grand Prix after starting the race in 14th place

Ferrari driver Kimi Raikkonen has dismissed Formula 1's rules as "a joke" after a controversial weekend at the Hungarian Grand Prix.

Raikkonen was angered that Red Bull's Max Verstappen was not criticised for what the Finn saw as unacceptable defence of fifth place during the race.

A questionable interpretation of qualifying rules also annoyed Ferrari.

"It's pointless to have rules if they don't apply all the time, for all the people," the 2007 world champion said.

Raikkonen felt Verstappen had twice contravened a rule that dictates how drivers can defend a position in a race.

This happened first at Turn Two, when Verstappen moved back to defend the outside line after Raikkonen had tried to switch his attack from from the inside to the outside. Raikkonen hit the Red Bull and damaged his front wing.

Raikkonen said: "For me, he moved once right, I decided to go left but once the other guy moves back, I did everything I could to avoid any contact.

"Once I decided to go somewhere, you cannot just come there. It is good that I managed to somehow half-miss him."

Kimi Raikkonen
Raikkonen tried, and failed, to pass Verstappen on several occasions during Sunday's race

The second incident later in the race was at Turn One, when Raikkonen locked his brakes trying to avoid Verstappen as the Dutchman moved to the outside to defend.

"It was a bit of a similar story, that second thing - obviously I made a move and once I decided to go, it's very hard to back off and try to avoid the other car, once the other car started to move after me.

"I tried to miss him and I just managed to miss him but it was two times that, in my feeling, he wasn't correct.

"But obviously, like I said, the stewards - or the people who decide how things go here, the stewards and some other guys - in many ways, it's a joke with the rules, you know?"

Verstappen said he believed he had been "fair".

"He moved right and then back to left when I was going there," the 18-year-old said. "And he took the front wing off.

"If he's not stopping moving then we'll hit each other. Because I moved first, so he moved after that, once I have decided to go outside and he turns after that wasn't fair."

The rule in question, article 27.6 of the sporting regulations, states: "More than one change of direction to defend a position is not permitted. Any driver moving back towards the racing line, having earlier defended his position off-line, should leave at least one car width between his own car and the edge of the track on the approach to the corner."

Raikkonen and the Ferrari team were also critical of a decision by race stewards not to move drivers who had failed to set a time within 107% of the fastest in first qualifying back down the grid, as defined by the rules.

The stewards said they made the decision because it was in the "exceptional circumstances" of a qualifying session hit by heavy rain and four red-flag stoppages.

Daniel Ricciardo and Max Verstappen
Daniel Ricciardo and Max Verstappen were two of five drivers investigated after Saturday's qualifying after not setting a time within 107 percent of the fastest time in Q1

"You have the 107% rule and the people who didn't go through first qualifying, they [the stewards] apply it for those cars but not for the rest," Raikkonen said.

"How can you suddenly have the same rule in the same qualifying applied two different ways? If somebody can explain how that works...

"But that's F1 these days, and something must change. It just looks bad to people outside, to you guys, and it's not fair. There's a rule, it should apply exactly the same way every time to everybody."

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