Webber: wet races will require some difficult decisions 24 Jan 2008
Red Bulls Mark Webber believes that race officials could face some tough calls this year in deciding when it is safe to race in wet conditions. It follows the ban on traction control for the 2008 season.
Webber, who lost out on a potential podium at a rain-soaked Fuji last year after being hit from behind by Sebastian Vettel, admits that competing in the wet could prove trickier this year, but feels it is the race director who will have the most difficult job.
When visibilitys very low, thats one thing, but when it becomes very difficult for us to control the cars and there are a lot of accidents with cars spinning, then obviously the correct decisions will need to be made at the time, the Australian told Formula1.com.
The drivers have the talent to be able to handle their cars in difficult conditions, but they dont have the talent to be able to control them in impossible conditions, so we just have to find the balance. I think the biggest unknown this year is the conditions that will be regarded as acceptable for us to race in without traction control.
For his part, Vettel, Webbers stable mate at Toro Rosso, believes that the removal of traction control wont in itself make competing in the wet significantly more dangerous, but agreed that it is a matter of deciding where to draw the line.
It would be wrong to say that it isnt safer to run with TC, but the risk is not that much higher because in difficult conditions, like those last year in Japan, it is also dangerous to run with traction control, Vettel told Formula1.com.
Formula One is potentially dangerous because if you are driving at 300 km/h and you lose control, for whatever reasons, the speed has to go somewhere. It is a question of assessing at each individual race what measures have to be taken to keep it safe for us guys.
The ban on traction control for 2008 is accompanied by the outlawing of launch control systems and the introduction of standardised Electronic Control Units (ECUs) on all cars.