Brawn dismantles Istanbul complaints: A challenge 'should be a good thing'

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Formula 1 motorsport boss Ross Brawn made a mockery of complaints by drivers over the low grip levels at the Turkish Grand Prix.

A new track surface laid just weeks before the event meant predictions of new lap records and Turn 8 being taken easy-flat never materialised at Istanbul Park.

In fact, conditions were so slippery that even in the dry, drivers were struggling with wheelspin in high gears and low-speed corners were taken at near-crawling pace.

Reaction to the situation was strong with Lewis Hamilton calling is "s*** with a capital S", Max Verstappen wishing F1 never sees such a lack of grip again, while George Russell considered the weekend as "not what F1 should be about".

Adding his opinion on the matter, Renault's Daniel Ricciardo feels that, if conditions like those in Turkey became the norm, it would be pointless for teams to work on finding every bit of performance from their cars.

“I knew everybody sitting on the couch was going to have a fun and exciting one to watch,” he said.

“I don’t know if we learned anything from this weekend because we will probably never come to a situation like it with this level of grip.

“But when teams are spending so much money developing cars and putting all the knowledge into designing the fastest race cars in the world, not being able to use them feels like a little bit of, obviously not this weekend it is an anomaly, but if it was [like this] all the time it would feel like a robbery.

“Why are we putting so much into these cars if we cannot actually push the limits?

“We did not really get to push an F1 car this weekend, sure it made it tricky and exciting but it was hard to get a lot of satisfaction out of it from a driving point of view.”

However, responding to the criticism, Brawn reminded everyone that having peak performance all the time is not what F1 is about.

“The promoter and country have done a fantastic job to put the circuit in a position to host a sensational Grand Prix,” he wrote in his column.

“I appreciate drivers were not happy with overall grip levels, but it was a consequence of the late decision to race there as the calendar was revised to respond to Covid-19.

“I think drivers sometimes need to remember F1 is a competition of who crosses the line first so while grip levels weren’t high, it was the same for everyone.

"Some drivers got their head down and came to terms with it, others found it a distraction but having a challenging surface as we had this weekend was no bad thing. It showed a driver’s talent to the max.

"I don’t think grip levels are a measure of the level of competition you will have.

“Competition needs to be fair and equal. It’s a sport, so we need to give everyone the same opportunity. It’s challenging, but that should be seen as good thing.

“As an example, Monaco has always been seen to be a very difficult event and race, but if you came to terms with it and looked on it positively as a big challenge, then you would succeed and win races there. If you went there in a negative frame of mind, you didn’t succeed.

“Turkey didn’t have the grippiest surface, but those who knuckled down and thought this was an opportunity had success.”