Ross Brawn admits the way the Hungarian Grand Prix unfolded is justification of why Formula 1 bosses are pushing for changes in regulations in 2021, with a tighter field the ultimate goal.
Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen were in a class of their own during the race at the Hungaroring, with the former ending up more than a minute ahead of the two Scuderia Ferrari drivers – Sebastian Vettel ahead of Charles Leclerc – in third and fourth, with the latter only falling eighteen seconds back after a late pit stop gamble to go for fastest lap.
Behind the two Ferrari’s, the rest of the field were more than a lap behind the race winner. Carlos Sainz Jr. was the best of the rest for the McLaren F1 team in fifth but was lapped, while fifteenth through eighteenth – Daniil Kvyat, George Russell, Antonio Giovinazzi and Lance Stroll – were two laps down. Right at the back, Williams Racing’s Robert Kubica ended up three laps down in nineteenth position.
Brawn says these gaps highlight the ‘vast chasm’ between the leading teams and the rest of the field, and although there are no guarantees that any rule change will lead to closer racing, it remains the ambition that the technical and sporting regulations are altered to attempt to tighten up the field.
“Four drivers from four different teams were lapped twice and another driver was actually lapped three times,” Formula 1’s Motorsport Managing Director Brawn said in his post-race debrief. “With Hamilton and Verstappen fighting for the duration of the race, the pace at the front was astounding from the first to the final lap, as that was the only way to win.
“However, it demonstrated the vast chasm in performance between the top three teams and the rest. I’ve said it so often, but this gap must be reduced. It remains one of our main objectives for the future as, alongside the FIA, we continue to work on the 2021 regulations.
“It’s an ambitious goal, and it won’t happen overnight as we do not have a magic wand, but it has to be our central ambition, achieved via the three main areas of the rules: technical, sporting and financial.
“It’s a key theme for the future of this sport and I think we are all in agreement on this, starting with the fans, whom we must listen to, because, at the end of the day, they are our most important asset.”