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DATE News (chronologically)
10/16/08
f1
F1 drivers want racer for stewards role  (GMM)  World champion Kimi Raikkonen on Thursday was among calls from formula one drivers for one of their ex-colleagues to occupy a role in the stewards room.

Following a raft of controversial recent penalties, including in Japan less than one week ago, the drivers in Shanghai suggested a good solution would be to appoint a former driver as a permanent steward.

"It would keep people happier also, that every time you get the same decision," Ferrari's Raikkonen told reporters ahead of the Chinese grand prix.

"Maybe if there would be an older driver there would be more respect and people wouldn't complain as much.  It's only that people want to have the same thing happening every time, the same penalties and same rules."

BMW's Nick Heidfeld, who said the issue would be discussed in the drivers' briefing on Friday, believes there was more consistency in stewards decisions last year, when Tony Scott-Andrews had a permanent role.

Now, FIA represent Alan Donnelly has a full-time advisory role alongside the stewards, but no vote when it comes to the actual application of penalties.

"Until the last race, I wasn't worried, but in the last race I think penalties were not justified," the German driver, Heidfeld, said.

Former double world champion Fernando Alonso agrees that a permanent stewards' advisor, in the form of an ex-driver, would be a good idea.

"The decisions they take are difficult to know from the outside if you never drove a formula one car.  For the drivers, what will help is to have consistency in the penalties," said the Spaniard.

"I think we ask for a little bit more consistency, even if (the penalties) are very harsh," Alonso said.

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