Williams driver George Russell says the “skating on ice” nature of the Turkish Grand Prix did not paint Formula 1 or its participants in a positive manner.
Formula 1 returned to Istanbul Park after a nine-year absence but drivers struggled for grip throughout the weekend on a track that was recently resurfaced.
In the dry Friday sessions drivers did not trouble the times from Formula 1’s last visit while running on Saturday and Sunday was affected by wet weather.
Russell, who slid into the pit entry wall on his reconnaissance lap, appreciated that he “would have loved it from the sofa” but felt the situation was too extreme.
“I think if you want chaos and carnage and drivers being made to look like idiots there are other categories and sports out there you can go and watch,” he said.
“Formula 1 is about the best cars, the best drivers, the best teams, going to the best tracks and showing what they can do. And this weekend was not that.
“People from the outside think ‘how can you spin when you’re going so slow’, and actually these cars aren’t designed to go slow, and we were being forced to go slow this weekend and the tyres were working in a window they’re not designed to work.
“And actually it was more dangerous when you had to back off as you just lost all the tyre temperature. Even at the end of the race I backed off and almost spun off on my in-lap after the race because I lost 30 degree of tyre temperature in half a lap and it’s like skating on ice.
“I’m sure I would have loved it from the sofa, there’s got to be maybe a mid-point somewhere that I think F1 can learn from and we’re not going here rolling the dice week in, week out.”
Russell nonetheless acknowledged that organisers at Istanbul Park had a tough job in readying the facility in the short time frame available.
“From what I hear and what I understand it all had to be done very last minute,” he said.
“The Turkish corporation or whoever ran the race did really good job to get it done in time.
“I heard they were delayed by really poor weather a month or two ago when they planned to resurface it and planned to run other categories to race on it. I understand and appreciate all of that.”