The Great Debate (India)

COLUMN – Karun Chandhok: Satisfying weekend in Valencia


Karun ChandhokThe European GP weekend was another positive result for me and a race that I quite enjoyed. I had to work really hard to pull away from my teammate Bruno Senna and then also fight on strategy with the faster Virgin Racing car of Timo Glock and to end the weekend 18th ahead of them was very satisfying.

Watching the replay of the race on Monday, the two clear highlights seemed to be Mark Webber’s accident and the whole safety car story. Mark’s shunt was pretty incredible — I really can’t recall anything so dramatic in a while, maybe Robert’s accident in Montreal in 2007 compares but this was a biggie. I sent Mark a quick e-mail straight away after seeing it and I’m glad to say he replied to say he was alright.

That being the case is a real testimony to the safety standards of a modern F1 car and the work done by the FIA with the crash tests and the safety standards for the chassis. When he landed on his roll hoop, Mark must have still been doing close to 200 kmh. It’s difficult really to say why the accident happened but clearly he didn’t realise how early Heikki would be decelerating into Turn 12.

At last week’s FIA meeting, there was a discussion about potential moveable rear wings which would make a huge difference to straight line speeds and promote overtaking. After seeing the accident on Sunday, I have to say that big speed differences may be good for overtaking but it may not be the safest solution for racing. The addition of Kers may be enough to promote overtaking in the same way as the push to pass system worked brilliantly at the last Indycar race a couple weeks ago.