Following an accident at last weekend’s German Grand Prix in which a cameraman was struck by a flying wheel, Formula One Management has announced that from now on cars will be banned from the pit lane.
‘It was assumed that we would ban camera crews from the pits,’ said an FOM spokesman ‘But that’s ridiculous. F1 is a television sport. We have to have cameras. This is a much better solution since it allows those vital TV crews to roam around getting nice shots of tyres with warmers on and engineers dressed up in those fireproof helmets that make them look like aliens without any fear of being hit by a car or loose wheel.’
The new ruling may answer FOM’s safety concerns but the move is sure to cause headaches for the teams; ‘It’s certainly going to make the race a challenge,’ said one anonymous insider. ‘We’re looking at getting the drivers to do wheel changes themselves out on the track by mounting four spare tyres on the back and bunging a jack in the boot. Yea, that’s right. Not many people know that F1 cars have a boot.’
Although engineers are clearly exploring all options to permit tyre changes in the face of the new regulation, paddock rumour suggest most teams will be more radical by contesting the current obligation to use primes and options during a race and attempting to complete the entire distance on one set of rubber. ‘Oh,’ said a Pirelli spokesman. ‘Erm… shit.’