Scuderia Ferrari driver Kimi Raikkonen believes that steward decisions will always be different because different things are looked at, and that having the same stewards each race isn’t the right way to solve the problem of inconsistency.
Controversial steward decisions have been a constant talking point throughout the 2017 season, and were brought to the forefront once again by the last lap overtake by Max Verstappen on Raikkonen at the United States Grand Prix.
The decision went the way of Raikkonen, with Verstappen being found to have gained a lasting advantage by running off the track and unceremoniously marched out of the podium waiting room.
Just one race later in the Mexican Grand Prix steward decisions were once again called into question, when Raikkonen’s teammate Sebastian Vettel appeared to run off the track in order to get past a slow Felipe Massa. Despite Vettel also having gained a lasting advantage by running off the track, no action was taken by the stewards and the incident wasn’t investigated.
Whilst the apparent lack of consistency in steward decisions has prompted calls for the same stewards to be used in all races, this isn’t something Raikkonen believes will improve the process.
“Sometimes it’s against you, sometimes it helps you, but I’m sure no driver will be happy when it goes against you. There’s a few different stewards around and everybody has their own opinions on everything.
“I don’t see that changing even if we have the same guys always, because when it’s good for you, you are happy, but when it’s against you, you’re still going to be sad and not so happy.
“No incident is the same as other, so the end result is not always going to be the same because there will always be differences in the things they’re going to look at.
“Unfortunately it’s part of racing, we’ll always be discussing this, but if you go to MotoGP or something you have a similar story there.”