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Nigel Mansell hits out at weight limit

Oct 19, 2013, 11:30 AM EDT

MansellGetty Getty Images

Nigel Mansell has criticized the minimum weight limit in Formula One next season as the new rules look set to hamper heavier drivers.

Although the minimum combined weight for the driver and car has been risen by 48kg for 2014, the majority of this increase is thought to be taken up by the heavier engines. As teams look to get as close to the minimum weight as possible (making their car lighter and therefore quicker), heavier drivers could be overlooked. For one-time F1 world champion and former IndyCar champion Mansell, this is an injustice.

“It’s wrong,” Mansell told the BBC. “They are not jockeys. It’s disgraceful, it’s discrimination against the medium-sized large driver.”

Nico Hulkenberg’s future is thought to be at threat due to his weight, even though he is widely considered to be one of the most talented drivers on the grid. For Mansell though, this should not be a consideration for teams.

“In years gone by, we didn’t have traction control or power steering – you had to be a strong driver and there were a lot of strong drivers,” Mansell said. “If you had this weight limit, they wouldn’t have been able to drive cars many years ago – or they would have driven with great difficulty. So I think get the weight limit up a bit, make some cars carry some ballast so that the bigger drivers don’t suffer as much.”

Taller drivers often find themselves struggling to match the weight of their rivals, with the outgoing Mark Webber expressing his thoughts on Twitter last month.

  1. patm3331 - Oct 25, 2013 at 6:15 PM

    They should make the minimum driver weight a percentage of what the car weight is. Therefore, no one would have an advantage because of driver weight, they would have to offput the weight with the car but every one would be equal. Kinda like how in the NHL this year, goalie pads are now a percentage of the goalies leg length. If the rule was set at 38″, then all goalies would use 38″ regardless of their size.

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