Bernd Mayländer, on Brazil: “they Said it was the pilot of the day; I was only doing my job”


As is usually the custom since the year 2000, a Formula 1 season tends to require a high burden of work for Bernd Mayländer, the man who is in charge of piloting the Safety Car every time your presence is required in a Formula 1 Grand Prix, and they are not few. Although the Virtual Safety Car has eased her workload in large part (eleven periods throughout the year, including in four races where there was no Safety Car physical), this German pilot of 45 years, the former DTM and that he came to the podium in GTs at the 24 hours of Le Mans, has had to go to the track this year on 14 occasions, during 10 of the 21 races on the calendar.

Only two appointments have had more than one Safety Car this season: Monaco and Brazil. The second has been, in particular, the appearance of more prominent Mayländer, as led the grill for 32 of the 71 laps contested, over four periods of Safety Car: it was the third race of the year diferred by rain after Monaco and the United Kingdom, using the first seven laps, he went out between turns 14 and 20 for the crash of Marcus Ericsson; led the row for a further 11 laps after the crash of Kimi Räikkönen and between the two red flags, and appeared for the last time between turns 49 and 55 by the accident of Felipe Massa.

In an interview GP Update, Mayländer has commented on her feelings of that weekend, starting with the development of the same from their point of view. The German argues that the decisions that were made in the first half of the race, both the cars security as the two red flags, were justified on the basis of each situation:

“That Saturday, the forecast was that we would have a wet race on Sunday, already knew a bit since Friday. In some way, you concentrate to that, you get ready because you’re going to have a wet race and the chance of being at the track is pretty high. I felt comfortable, I knew I might have to delay the start of the race, and then we would see what was said by the pilots in the 15-minute period where they could turn. Then, we had the crash of Romain Grosjean and everyone knew that the track was very slippery”.

we Knew what was happening and we made the right decision starting behind the Safety Car, to give the riders the opportunity to race. We had another accident, something that can happen. I led the race many laps, and everyone could work well to clean the track and let them run again. After the next accident, had to stop the race. We saw that it had changed a little bit better and we said: “Okay, let’s try this again”. there Was a lot of pressure and, in my case, I was on the limit, but I can say that I spent well“.

“No one in 17 years, I have been asked if I can go faster”

When asked by the radio communications of the drivers during a Safety Car, especially in conditions of rain, Mayländer says he can’t listen to them, because they give “too much information”, and that only he has communicated with Charlie Whiting and the recently retired Herbie Blash during a race: “If you get all that information from the radio, not you concentrate on piloting”. Similarly, he says that he has never received a complaint of direct Race Direction or of a pilot due to his pace, ensuring that he goes the limit with a street car, but that would include the complaints of some riders, which have occurred sporadically for the radios:

“sometimes Charlie and Herbie to report me and ask me if I can go faster, if it is possible or not, but in the same way I never say anything like “can you climb up?”, because they can see that I’m going to the limit. No pilot has approached me at the end of a race in the last 17 years and I have been asked if I can go faster or push for more. If you pass, sure that we will think about that, but it has not happened. I can understand that the pilots, Lewis or anyone else, are behind me and ask: “can you go the Safety Car faster?”, because they are trying to maintain temperatures and pressures of their tyres. I think that it is a normal thing for the sport, and if it was in the car of Lewis, I would say the same thing, maybe.”

“they Also know that it is a street car and I am pushing a lot. Used Pirelli tires normal, with grooves normal and a normal profile, but with a compound more smooth, so that the grip works a little, rather than that of a tire normal, but in the end, it is much slower than a Formula 1, is a safety car. Luckily, the tires worked well and the car was perfect, but even so, we are about 10 seconds slower per mile, wet or dry“.

“it Was a Formula 1 race, real in harsh conditions”

with Respect to the race in if, Mayländer is described as “one of the best of the season” and “a Formula 1 race, real in harsh conditions”. Believes that Lewis Hamilton did “a perfect job”, although it would be “in a situation comfortable”, and that he seemed to “great to see some riders using other lines in the race, as the cars. Max Verstappen, therefore, had to go to the fore, and the German didn’t skimp on praise: “I Used a different line, much more aggressive than the other. His line of career in the curve 3, and its speed in curve 1 were very impressive. Had a small error when trompeó, like Nico Rosberg. In the end, made this race to perfection, and it is thus that in the end it was the pilot of the day”.

After the race, Mayländer was even interviewed by the team of Globo TV, in charge of the broadcasts of Formula 1 in Brazil, who taught her that, to many people, was the pilot of the day. “Was very friendly, but the pilots ran out and ran, I only did my job. After a career well, you’re a little bit proud that everything has gone well”. In comparison with other races ‘crazy’, Mayländer puts it at the level of Fuji 2007, Korea 2010 and Montreal 2011. Rain permanent, sometimes in greater or lesser quantity, and we had to stop racing and relanzarlas”.