Should a driver ever concede a place?


Not my cup of cake
Valued Member
In a bit of editorialising the BBC made the following comment about the battle between Button and Schumacher at the Spanish Grand Prix last weekend:

Button was critical of the German seven-time world champion for not allowing him to pass.

Now Button's comments weren't quite as straight forward as that, I'll let you read the article to see what he actually said:

Anyway, to my point, is it ever legitimate for a driver to expect a "slower" car to let them through or should a car holding a higher place be allowed to do what ever is required (within the rules) to defend a position?
Well these are Button's words and they're quite clear:

"It's almost impossible to overtake around here and he [Schumacher] was moving round quite a bit and making sure I couldn't get past so it's frustrating," said Button.

"The pace of the car was really good, but it doesn't make any difference if you cannot overtake. I was trying so hard to overtake that I damaged my tyres quite badly."

So if I've got this right, he's complaining that Michael made it difficult for him to overtake?
Seriously, the current WDC is complaining that during a race a competitor didn't just pull over to the side of the circuit and wave him past?

I despair sometimes.
I think Button was trying to imply that if he had cucked it up the inside then Schumacher would've quite hapilly had an 'accident' such is the man. To be fair whenever Schumacher defended the inside at turn one it did look as though he'd happily sail into the sidepod of anydone silly enough to dive up the inside...
Jenson was simply explaining that he couldn't pass Schuey, he spoke these words straight after the race and there was no difinitive inference of unfair tactics, or anything other than frustration at having all his attempts blocked. The media has blown his statements out of proportion and quoted him out of context to create something out of nothing. At no point did Jenson imply that he had a right to pass, he was simply explaining that he tried, it was extremely difficult and frustrating.
There are circumstances when it is a good idea to concede a place, as defending a position can be very detrimental to your overall pace. If you are confident that you will not be passed or that if you do lose the position you won't lose any other places then there is no reason to concede track position.

When we had refuelling conceding track position was far more likely as losing time at a particular phase of a race was far more critical.
Thinking about "Buttons frustrations with no-passing" abilities, I just know that Jeremy Clarkson is sitting somewhere and saying "Rubbish, he should have tried harder" LOL

Seriously, I think he should have kept quite. We all know that overtaking is difficult, and the front tyres are narrower, and blah blah blah... I'm getting sick of drivers talking about "losing a tenth" thanks to backmarkers, "tyre managment" and "being unable to get close due to aerodynamics".

I'm starting to agree with Rob Walker who said that "F1 drivers are prima donnas who are never happy".
As I said, Jenson was very matter-of-fact about it, he was asked a question and he answered it. It was the media that decided to put the spin on it, quote it out of context and whine about it.

You don't want to ally yourself with Rob Walker, he's a galah.
The comments as I saw them didn't imply any slur on Schumacher, quite the reverse, I think they recognised his talent for "having the widest car on the circuit"....

This part of racing is always going to irritate, but should the roles be reversed Jenson would be doing his best to emulate Michael (hopefully a little better than he did in the day when they were reversed)

I would have said that if any inference was being made it was that the circuits did not allow passing easily enough or the rule changes to facilitate passing just hadn't worked, but it was straight after a race, it was a response to a direct question so I don't think there was any sour grapes, merely a comment of the race.
The first time He tried to pass, Shumacher moved twice, which I thought was not suppoed to be allowed, after that, there was no way Jenson would get past as MScould defend everytime and only let Jenson try to go around the outside.. QED..
I was a bit worried this thread might end up in a discussion about the Schumacher/Button incident and that wasn't the point. For example, Lucas Di Grassi at Monaco was in a significantly slower car than Alonso at Monaco but as he was in front he tried to defend the place, Alonso obviously thought Di Grassi should yield. After battling with Di Grassi for a few laps Alonso passed him and then Trulli gave away his place as he (Trulli) thought he should get out of the way - who was right Di Grassi or Trulli?
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