FIA leaves sausage kerbs in place at Paul Ricard

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FIA race director Michael Masi took note of the grievances of several team bosses over the costly impact of Paul Ricard's sausage kerbs, but the track limit deterrents will remain in place.

Paul Ricard's sausage kerbs were a concern from the outset of Friday's opening day of running in France, with Valtteri Bottas and Max Verstappen damaging their cars after running beyond the rumble strip and over the yellow kerbs that act as a physical limit to the track.

Mercedes sporting director Ron Meadows and his Red Bull counterpart Jonathan Wheatley radioed in to race director Masi during the sessions to draw the latter's attention to the damage, both material and financial, caused by the kerb elements.

The topic was tabled during Friday evening's drivers' briefing but no action was taken on Saturday, save for a minor update in the race director's note that added extra track limits monitoring at Trun 6 in addition to Turns 1-2, 3-5 and 8-9.

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff said that any subsequent car damage was simply an extra cost added to a team's overall expenses in the context of F1's budget cap.

"We are really tight on what we can spend under the cost cap regulations," said Wolff, quoted by "And if you're losing a floor because of a sausage kerb, that's frustrating.

"But it's nobody's fault. Just together I think we just need to come up with solutions that prevent cars going offline too much. And on the other side, don't break the chassis.

"Electronic monitoring is not great, visual monitoring is not great. I think you have to have factors that create a cost to running wide, but preferably not a financial cost.

"Maybe you're stuck in a gravel bed, and that would be back to the simplistic solutions. But having said that, the simplistic can also create complications in terms of safety, for example."

Red Bull team boss Christian Horner believes the concept of gravel traps should be revisited.

"I think it is important to find a balance," he said. "The problem is that the way that the kerbs are laid out there, they're not immediately visible to the drivers, so it is sort of inviting you to go there.

"It would just be nice if we found something that didn't do quite as much damage to the car, that there was a time penalty.

"This is why I think probably gravel is a better longer term way to go, that there is a physical penalty, other than just smashing up front wings, which, in a cost cap world, is obviously very expensive."

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