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Hamilton and Norris dismiss Villeneuve's simultator criticism

  • Published on 06 Sep 2019 19:00
  • comments 2
  • By: Harry Mattocks

Jacques Villenueve has once again criticised young drivers in Formula 1, this time saying that they are taking more risks because they have been brought up using simulators. 

In the wake of the tragic incident involving Antoine Hubert last time out in Belgium, Villeneuve told RTBF that he believed the use of simulators meant that young drivers are fearless about the consequences of accidents.

"Instead of letting the young drivers test, they sit for a week in the race simulator," said Villeneuve. "When they get to the racetrack, they behave as if they're still in the simulator.

"It is not the same stress as it used to be. It does not bring the same adrenaline. The assessment of danger, of the enormous risk that they take when they go to the racetrack, is no longer the same."

Lando Norris is well known for his use of simulators when he's away from the circuit, with the Brit often seen racing alongside Max Verstappen on iRacing. As you could imagine, these comments have not gone down well with the McLaren rookie.

"I don't think it's got anything to do with sim racing," said Norris when asked about what Villeneuve had said. "It's just something he maybe wants to use as an excuse for it.

"Safety is getting much better, especially compared to when he would have been racing. It's not like we completely forget it. We don't go flat out and not care about anything. We still realise what danger is.

"Everything is getting safer, so sometimes you take more risks than at other times. I don't know what happened on the weekend, and I don't want to talk about it, but I'm sure it wasn't anyone doing anything stupid or risking anything.

"I think it was something small that turned into something pretty big. I don't think it's because we're younger, more fearless, less fearless. It's unlucky. That's about it."

Current world champion Lewis Hamilton has also taken issue with these latest comments from the outspoken Canadian.

"I don't really agree with a lot of the opinions of that individual and I don't know if anyone [does]. I personally don't listen to that individual's opinion.

"But [on the simulator link] I don't think so. I think the kids are on the track..if you look at the kids on the ski slopes, from small up they have no fears and it is the same with us race drivers, whatever age.

"I am sure as you get a bid older it [fear] creeps in, but the simulators don't make you more or less fearful. I don't agree with that no."


Replies (2)

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  • f1dave

    Posts: 675

    Very funny to watch Villenueve and Rossberg sniping from the sidelines and trying hard to be noticed.

    • + 0
    • Sep 7 2019 - 02:59
    • They don't really need to try, they are. You, me and many other notice them. And then I handle them with all the delicacy they deserve *throws Villeneuve's opinion into the loo where it belongs, while I listen to Nico's and think "Hm, maybe.."*

      • + 0
      • Sep 7 2019 - 15:41


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