Playing the Blame Game: Mark or Heikki?

The European Grand Prix was, somewhat surprisingly, a exciting and controversial race. We saw the first ever Safety car in Valencia due to easily the worst crash of the year. The commotion happened on lap 10 when Mark Webber was slipstreaming Heikki Kovalainen’s Lotus on the straight onto turn 12.

Chaos ensued, with the safety car came a string of penalties that have left the race’s result useless for the time being. Currently 9 drivers are awaiting their fate after speeding under safety car conditions and Lewis Hamilton was lucky not to suffer from his drive through penalty. All this came from the accident and the turmoil that it caused. So can we pin the blame on one driver?

Well, let’s have a look.

First of all Mark Webber obviously had the faster car. He was also helped by the slipstream he gained from Heikki’s car, so he was going at a good speed looking to overtake on a notoriously difficult track to do so. It seems as if Heikki made his one move which Mark closely followed. They were fighting for position so nothing wrong there but should the slower cars allowed to race? Yes, in my view, they’ve applied to race and have been accepted by the FIA, and under the 107% rule Heikki would have been in the race anyway.

Here’s Heikki’s opinion, written on his Twitter page,

“Shame about the race Mark ran in to me not more to say. Glad he’s ok tho it’s another proof of F1 safety. Now time to move on again…”

I think that’s a pretty good sum-up of what happened. I believe Mark underestimated how fast he was going and it was too late by the time he realised what was happening to react.

At the moment however, there is very little information on the fine details of what happened, but I will continue to delve deeper into the crash and find who really was to blame.


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