Sebastian Vettel was furious with race control after the Lando Norris crash during qualification.
The rain at Spa caused all sorts of problems during qualification. Q3 saw the peak of those problems, as Norris suffered a nasty crash at the Eau Rouge corner. It wouldn’t have happened if race control had listened to Vettel’s words before Q3.
Two minutes into the session, Vettel spoke of needing a red flag due to excess water on the track, and the dangers of racing in such conditions. His words fell on deaf ears, and soon enough, disaster struck. Norris, thundering up the track, lost control and crashed.
Even though every driver was on full wets, it was too much. After Norris’ crash, the red flag came out without any delay. An incensed Vettel took to his radio, furious with race control.
“Yeah, well, what the f**k did I say?! What did I say?! Red flag! It’s unnecessary,” Vettel exploded.
Look before you leap
After taking a breather and being advised by his race engineer, Vettel calmed down. He then said, “Is he okay?” The kind-hearted German then slowed his car down to check on his colleague, and after seeing that all was well, proceeded to go on.
The experience of the four-time world champion told him that it would be catastrophic to race in those conditions. Unfortunately, the FIA didn’t pay attention to him, and proceeded to start Q3 proceedings. If they had listened to him, Norris wouldn’t have crashed, and the grid might have looked very different for Sunday.
The race directors were completely at fault. Had they heeded Vettel’s words, the disaster could have been averted. We have a feeling Vettel will have more to say on the irresponsibility displayed by race control. Thankfully, Norris is okay.