F1 Winter Break
FIA legalises ‘donuts’ for race winners
Scuderia Ferrari
Posted By: Justin Hynes  |  17 Feb 2014   |  8:19 pm GMT  |  106 comments

The post-race, wheel-spinning ‘donuts’ that got Sebastian Vettel into hot water with race officials after he secured his fourth world championship title last year have been legalised by the FIA, though only if conducted in a safe manner.

F1’s governing body has published a new set of sporting regulations containing a number of minor modifications, including a rule allowing drivers to celebrate victory in rubber-burning style.

In an addition to article 43.3, which covers end-of-race procedure, the latest sporting regulations state that a winning driver may now “perform an act of celebration” before reaching parc fermé provided that the act is “performed safely and does not endanger other drivers or any officials”, “does not call into question the legality of his car” and “does not delay the podium ceremony”.

Vettel was last year fined €25,000 for performing donuts on the start/finish straight at the Buddh International Circuit following his title triumph. He cheekily repeated the celebration a week later at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix but escaped sanction there by performing the donuts in a run-off area and then driving back to parc fermé.

Elsewhere, the latest version of the sporting regulations also introduces a five-second time penalty for minor infractions. The regulation states that a driver must enter pit lane and stop at his pit box for at least five seconds and then re-join the race. The regulations add that while a car is stationary in pit lane as a result of incurring such a penalty it “may not be worked on until the car has been stationary for five seconds”.

The new rule adds that drivers can elect not to take the penalty in pitlane but can have the five seconds added to his time following the end of the race, provided the driver makes no further pit stop during the race.

The revised rules also include a provision for rookie drivers gaining test miles in pursuit of a Superlicence. From now on a green light must be fitted to the rear of any car being driven by a driver not in possession of a Superlicence. The light must be illuminated at all times the car is on track.


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doubt any team would risk damaging the engine, gearbox etc by allowing a doughnut. hope they do though


Let's see is anyone is skilled enough to do them @ Monaco.


agreed - little chance of donuts unless power unit and gearbox are no longer needed. The MGU-H will need to be cooled gradually from the second the car crosses the finish line if they have to race it again. Even us road car drivers should cool the turbo if possible before switching off!


This brings up one question. How many cars will 'burn' under safety car period this season?

Valentino from montreal

Totally ridiculous .. F1 is becoming too family-friendly ...

The only act of celebration Schumacher use to do when he won all those 91 races was to glue himself to the team's pit-wall at the checkered flag and pumped his fists ...

That's all that was needed really !


The fans didn't seem to mind the donut's too badly here...


If Alonso or Kimi especially win next year at Monza I get the feeling they'll be doing them!

Also, every driver goes to the pit wall when they've won, it's hardly a Schumacher thing.


Plus jumping on the podium. Any true Schumi fan would know that!


And conducting the Italian anthem ...


No one jumps as well as Schumi except Jorge Lorenzo.


Finally! Common sense returns to the FIA. I hope now they don't return and decide the winning drivers has to do fat-free donuts!!


100% glazed for me please.


Common sense prevailed then! Sometimes it seems that the FIA will regulate the life out of the sport which would be a pity. While safety is vital, and I applaud them for the changes to circuit, and car design that have been instigated since the death of Ayrton Senna. I however feel that the sport has got too artificial, too contrived, and needs gross simplification or back to basics to put back the thrill in this sport. 2014 will be interesting in as much to see how things work out, but it is in dangering of becoming so constrained. Let's get back to big engines, heavily restricted aero, and big wide tyres, and watch some proper racing. It comes to something when F1 is in danger of falling below the next lowest catogory.


Its still regulated donuts. "allowed one act of celebration" 🙂


After the ongoing double points fiasco we have to throw the peasants a few crumbs to keep them quiet.


At last, some common sense.



Vettel not only set a trend but also legalised it. hahaha...

Now... How come they can have common sense like this while at the same token made the double points rule?


Wow this is so cool.

I always like it when the rule book is torn up in favour of the old rules for donut celebrations are one of those rules that needed to get relaxed for they're part and parcel of the sports history.

In a way, the sport owes Lewis for this rule change for it's thanks to his laissez faire donut celebrations at every Silverstone race (despite the rules) that planted the seed of civil disobedience in Vettel's head in the future.

Likewise, Lewis tried to bring back the flag waving celebration after the race at Canada 2012 and when Alonso tried doing this too at Valencia 2012, he instead got a reprimand for his troubles.

On a different page, it would also be nice seeing the after race rules relaxed a bit more so the fans can get onto the circuit and watch the podium celebrations at every circuit.

I think the sport shouldn't only cater to the Tv audiences but also the fans on the ground.

As for the 5 second penalty, I would rather 5 seconds get added to my time for at the end of races, there's always big gaps between the drivers unlike a situation were a driver would have to serve a 5 second penalty in the pit lane at the start of the race.

Anyway, 2014 is looking like the birth of a new Formula 1 taking into account the birth of many rule changes such as the double points rule.


Maybe the green light should also be installed for every aggressive driver Lol...


As part of the revised rules, flag waving is now allowed, which I think is cool. Always think back to Senna waving the Brazilian flag on another victory lap...

I agree that fans should be allowed onto the circuit at the end of the race, really adds to the festival feeling. I was at the Austin race in the fall & it was great to be on the start finish straight - got to meet Damon Hill & Spotty Herbert as well.


@ Texas T

Oh, so now the flag waving has been given the green light too, that's perfect.

Yes, the Austin track is magnificent.


How about green lights for rookies, red lights for aggressive drivers and blue lights for people taking it easy and driving to their deltas? 🙂


@ Random 79

Yeah, that's about right.


"Donuts in F1". What chance of seeing Montoya back in the F1 paddock soon demanding his share? Until he's told "it's not those sort of doughnuts.........."

I know it isn't relevant to this post, but I was watching some vintage F1 at Silverstone from the late 70s/early 80s and noted that, at Silverstone - and Kyalami actually - the race was held on a Saturday - curiously when Brands Hatch hosted the Brit GP it reverted to the more traditional Sunday slot. 1983 was the last time Silverstone had the GP on the Saturday, as was 1985 Kyalami race.

I wonder why? Just curious.

Incidentally, I think - think! - the 1983 British grand prix was the hottest grand prix ever held in Blighty, as it was held in a mid summer heatwave that year. We tend to think of the summers of 1976, 1989 and 2003 as sweltering - which they were - but I never realised the summer of 1983 was so hot.

Ah well, learn something every day!


I think that it was something more prosaic - The Sunday Observance Act of 1780 was amended only in 1987 to "exempt races, athletic sports and other sporting events". I seem to remember prior to that it was illegal to charge entry (although that restriction might have ended previously, can't remember) and - heaven forbid - on-course betting on a Sunday.

Certainly to my memory, all the way through to the early/mid 80's the British GP was out of step with the other GPs (SA excepted, it seems), no matter where it was held.

Having said that, no doubt I'll be proved wrong. Again 🙂


Thanks for the information, I was always curious about "Silverstone Saturday F1". Although still strange why Brands Hatch was a Sunday event.........like I said, perhaps Kent council was a hive of civil disobedience!

Still in the dark about why it was Kyalami hosted the race on a Saturday (The first grand prix held on the Veldt in 1967 was held on a Monday!)

Perhaps the religious angle is why there's never been a grand prix on the streets of Cardiff - until the mid 90s Wales was a "dry" country - no champagne/alcohol allowed to be sold and/or consumed in a public place, no shops open, no betting, nothing.

How times change!


And after I went to all the trouble of resisting the urge to make another Montoya joke in response to comment #3 😉

And how hot was it exactly?


Remember the Silverstone of 1998, 2000, 2002, 2008 and most recently 2012 when most of the spectators were knee deep in mud, cars beached in the fields, and tractors required to rescue people?

Along with Spa, I think Silverstone has been the European leg of the championship with the most rain affected weekends. What Silverstone spectators would do to have, to quote Paul Weller and the Style Council "A long hot summer.........."

What chance this years event is run in a heatwave?


I just checked on the web, and by happy co-incidence, Saturday July 16th 1983 - the day of the race at Silverstone - was the hottest day of the year in the UK in 1983, with the Northhamps/Bucks air temperature around 33C! The track temperature was listed at around 45C+. 33C at Silverstone! Imagine that! Not only that, but there was extremely high humidity as well, making Silverstone feel very sticky and muggy as well.

I'm pretty sure an air temperature of 33C was record for a grand prix held at Silverstone.


At least the drivers wouldn't have to worry about getting their tyres up to temperature 😉


Blimey Random, 49C ambient? I assume you live in the middle of the desert. Can you imagine how the Pirelli's would cope in that heat? Paul Hembrey would be having kittens.

I remember during the summer of 2003 the whole of Europe was roasting, and in Southern England and Wales temperatures were nudging 40C. If you remember that year, European F1 temperature records were smashed at Hockenhiem and the Hungaoring. Also, 2005 was a very hot year for air temperatures in F1, with sweltering conditions in Malyasia, Bahrain, Monaco, Europe (Nuburgring), Canada, France, Hungary, Turkey and Italy. Phew, what a scorcher!


I should also add that Malaysia, Monaco, Canada (sometimes), Hungary, Singapore and Brazil also usually have races in very high humidity. The problem is there is so much moisture in the air that the effect of cooling by sweating is severely reduced, causing the body temperature to rise, bringing with it all the assorted problems of heat stroke, overheating organs, dehydration and ultimately passing out.

Like I said, imagine standing in a sauna wearing thermal clothing and you get a pretty good idea of what drivers to have endure in humid climes.


RE Random: I stand to be corrected, but the two hottest grand prix in modern F1 was the 1984 Dallas grand prix and the 2005 Bahrain grand prix where, at both venues, the air temperature was 42C, and the track temperature was hovering around 57C. Pretty toasty I would say. Bear in mind the drivers had to wear three piece layers, and are sitting behind red hot fuel tank/engine and you start to appreciate their fitness levels - although our Nige passed out at Dallas trying to push his broken car over the finish line.

Yes, the humidity during the summer in Blighty can be pretty debilitating, especially inland where is no benefit of a sea breeze, and that obviously applies to Silverstone. Imagine standing in a greenhouse or sauna where thermals and you get a pretty good idea of what high humidity in a British summer is like. Without air conditioning, it is pretty well unbearable.


33 is not much by our standards - we actually call that a pretty nice day 🙂 - but I've been told the humidity is why the heat is so much worse over there.

As I've said recently 49 is the hottest I've seen and been in (and that's air temperature, never mind the ground that you could literally cook your bacon and eggs on), so could you imagine a 49 degree day at Silverstone?

Suddenly Bernie's showers on the track idea doesn't sound so bad 😉


not only that but I'm fairly sure that there would be other races before and after the GP which was just one race in a race meeting - the sort of value for spectator money that Bernie has long forgotten! The Saturday running might have been due BBC Grandstand TV show which was on Saturday afternoons and I'm fairly sure that sports would not have been on TV in the UK on Sundays, at least not in the 1960s. I'm not sure when Sunday TV sport did start in the UK but someone will know!


My Dad told me that a few years ago (albeit about 1981) and I refused to believe him but he was of course right (he was there!). I imagine it was for religious reasons that they held the race on a Saturday.


Yes you are correct about noise and local churches around Silverstone, there was a 11am until 6pm slot to run meetings on a Sunday.

Many times I can remember at non GP sunday meetings the last race of the day being cut short, if the meeting was running late so as not to breach the 6pm curfew.


That's a plausible theory, but still curious why Brands Hatch was on the Sunday while Silverstone was Saturday until after 1983 GP. Could it be Kent is full of atheists while the good folk of Northamptonshire are god fearing souls only to change their beliefs in the mid 80s??????????

Only joking of course. Actually, could it be due to the chronic traffic jams that used to afflict the Silverstone area so everyone headed to the track on a Thursday??


Didn't realise Brands continued to host it on a Sunday! Haha probably not quite as stark a difference between Kent and Northamptonshire when it comes to religion but you might not have been far off in concluding local differences if Anthony is right! The only other thing I can thing of is a way of distinguishing between the two events more clearly, though surely the casual race fan would have just got confused!


Does this mean qualifying isn't changing?


FIA allows it, surely teams won't with the maximum of five engines rule. Gearboxes are restricted too this year aren't they?


Try telling Seb that though!


Very restricted, as they have been the last few years hence all the annoying grid drop penalties.

You're right though - I think the teams will want to be careful and preserve the power units as much as possible.


Yes. Teams will have to chose their eight ratios, which will be locked for the year, before the practice session at Melbourne. Last year, teams had a pre selected choice of 30 ratios.


Wasn't the reason for the fine in India because his car wasn't returned to parc ferme rather than actually doing the donuts on the start/finish line?


I'm confused...

Weren't donuts ALWAYS legal? Vettel's punishment in India was because he didn't take the car to Parc Ferme, not for doing donuts.

Or am I missing something here?


It's ridiculous that this needed to be allowed via a regulation change to begin with. The 5 second rule makes sense, and prevents a minor infraction from completely ruining a race.


Just the winning driver or are others allowed to celebrate too?


Regs say just the race winner.


How many race winners will have surplus fuel to waste on a donut after a victory, especially now that cars must return to parc ferme with 1 litre in the tank?


Brilliant isn't it! The FIA legalise something that realistically no one will be able to do!


A little goes a long way. I'm fine with the driver winning the title doing donuts, or some other sort of public celebration. It will get tedious if every single race winner does it though.

Mike from Colombia

Donuts will now become common place and as downmarket as the type you get at Dunkin.

F1 really is grabbing at straws to attract a new "fan" base.

Let's just get back to proper close up racing.

Just saw this video the other day and made me remember what we are missing:


Now we have push to pass and rubbish Italian tyres. Until these two elements disappear then we will always feel that F1 has fallen short.

2010 was the last decent season.

Jose Sanchez kowalsky

I would say 2008 was the last decent season. In 2010 with no refuling, cars were not at its best. Long and heavy. Engines and boxes has to last for many gps, so no maximun power.


Sorry mates, donuts are juvenile and about as appealing as vuvuzelas. It'll be interesting to see who does not indulge in the practice, apart from finger thrusting non-sporting team rule breakers.


F1 in pulling head out of a**e and playing to the crowds shocker! Maybe there's hope!


Triple points for donuts ?


Only the race-winner can do donuts ?

So, if someone finishes second and, by doing so wraps up the WDC, he has to quietly return to parc ferme with no celebration ?


Now even doughnuts are boring by being made legal!


The five second rule really confuses me! Clearly a five second stop-go is much more time consuming than having five seconds added onto your time at the end of a race so clearly everyone will choose to add it on at the end unless the probability of a Safety Car is really high.

Also, if the rule is that someone HAS to serve a stop-and-go if they've got another pitstop to make what does that suggest? That the same infringement (or an equivalent one) is met with a heavier penalty if served earlier in the race? I'm guessing I simply haven't understood the ruling properly (I haven't looked into this) but from where I'm sitting it's a bit of a strange rule!


Thanks for the clarifications everyone and for the comments generally.


I came here just to discuss this also.

Seems far more relevant than the clinical wrapped in cotton wool safety message about allowed donuts main item.


My understanding is that you can work on the car after the 5 seconds is up i.e. you come in for a pit stop, sit there for 5 seconds then they change tyres etc. If you don't need to stop again the 5 seconds is added on after the race. So it adds up to the same time although overall it may not be that simple eg after pit stop you come out and get stuck behind a slower car which means you lose out more time!


The difference is the team can work on the car. If a driver has a tyre stop to make, he can come in, wait 5 seconds, then the team can change the tyres and he carries on, losing 5 seconds overall. With no pitstop to make, he gets 5 seconds added to the final time (which confuses the result and the fans).

So it's less than an old fashioned stop and go or even a drive through.

Good rule, I think. Drive throughs are often too harsh.


I believe the difference between the old stop/go penalty and this new one is that the penalty can be served during a normal pit stop, i.e. the cars can be worked on once the 5 seconds is up, which was not previously the case. Or, if they have made all their scheduled stops, the time is added on at the end of the race. That way, the penalty is always 5 seconds, rather than the previous 10 sec plus an extra pit stop... Which I always thought was a bit harsh.


Ah thank you! That makes a lot more sense! Yes I agree that the old 10-second stop-go was pretty harsh and I think the FIA agreed too; that's why the drive-through penalty replaced it for most infringements. It's why I was confused about a 5-second stop-go but your answer clears up that confusion.


Probability of a SC at the end of the race relative to earlier on in the race*

Rohan Vithayathil


When recently has anyone been fined or reprimanded for donuts? Vettel's wrong move was not leaving his ride in parc ferme. I don't like this neat journo thing of pitting FIA old men vs racers doing burnouts, it's not true that they have a problem with donuts or celebration that's safe.

I'll pretend you didn't know, it's a shame people keep believing such nonsense


Conor Daly did donuts after winning the GP3 race in Valencia. He was reprimanded for "over-celebration" and for having the car facing the wrong way when there was oncoming traffic - he did it off the track however.


So, stationary for 5 seconds before being worked on....hypothetically if a driver has that penalty, then a safety car is deployed, and the team has to stack the pit stops... can they call the stacked time part of the penalty? Wonder what the FIA would say to that ??


I would interpret it thus: If the wording is that he has to be stationary "in his pit box" then the time spent stacked will not count as he is not in his pit box. He would have to enter the box then be stationary for 5 seconds before/after work is carried out.


Hmmm, that's an interesting point... I would imagine that there's a rule to prevent penalties being taken under the safety car (though I'm not sure about this), but if a teams' cars were running nose-to-tail and the second one had a penalty, I can't see why they COULDN'T stack them... As you suggest, it will be fascinating to see if there's any fallout/protests if such a thing occurs.


The full regulation states:

16.3 The stewards may impose any one of the penalties below on any driver involved in an Incident:

a) A five second time penalty. The driver must enter the pit lane, stop at his pit for at least five seconds and then re-join the race. The relevant driver may however elect not to stop, provided he carries out no further pit stop before the end of the race. In such cases five seconds will be added to the elapsed race time of the driver concerned.

The regs later expand on this, saying:

b) With the exception of Article 16.3a) above, from the time the stewards’ decision is notified on the official messaging system the relevant driver may cross the Line on the track no more than twice before entering the pit lane and, in the case of a penalty under Article 16.3c), proceeding to his garage where he shall remain for the period of the time penalty.

However, unless the driver was already in the pit entry for the purpose of serving his penalty, he may not carry out the penalty after the safety car has been deployed. The number of times the driver crosses the Line behind the safety car will be added to the maximum number of times he may cross the Line on the track.

c) Whilst a car is stationary in the pit lane as a result of incurring a penalty under Article 16.3(a) above it may not be worked on until the car has been stationary for at least five seconds.

d) Whilst a car is stationary in the pit lane as a result of incurring a time penalty under Article 16.3(c) above it may not be worked on. However, if the engine stops it may be started after the time penalty period has elapsed.


The only time a driver would attempt doughnuts this season would be when the so called driver has won the championship!


Ho hum. Much rather watching smoke rising off squealing tyres during braking.


I look forward to the post-Melbourne clarification from Charlie Whiting:

"Post-race 'doughnuts' must not exceed two continuous, full revolutions of the vehicle and must be restricted to the bounds of a 30ft x 30ft square area measured from the first point of breaking tyre traction. During the 'doughnut' phase of the celebration, the use of ERS and DRS is prohibited.

Any driver found in contravention of the above will be subject to a reprimand."


Hahaha! Funny... But I wouldn't bet against it becoming a reality before the season is out! 😉


James, you've overlooked the new rule that regulates when they can take a ....


Shouldn't that be







Apparently leading spaces are trimmed from comments which completely nuetralised my arc of descent.

Oh well.


Hey hey.... it doesn't specifically say 'donuts'. It says an 'act of celebration', which is even better! Just imagine the possibilities..... I'm hoping for a little impromptu hopping out of the car and air-guitaring, myself.


This is why MotoGP is so cool. Rossi's celebrations are thing of legend.


Corrected FIA headline:

"FIA awards quadruple points for donuts"

sigh. #RIPf1


I don't care about the post race celebrations. But I really like the 5 second penalty, which gives the officials the ability to punish a driver in a limited way. Before, the minimum penalty involved at least an additional pit stop or worse. Now, it's 5 sec. added to a regular pit stop or to the end of the race if there is not further stop.

With the ability to enforce a small penalty for a small violation, perhaps the race director will more frequently punish things like four wheels off the track or forcing a competitor off the track without completely killing the driver's chances. I like the idea.


Excellent comment Roberto.


OK lets take your example... Fernando cannot get passed Grosjean lap after lap, Grosjean is defending very well.... Now with the new rule all Fernando has to do is go 4 wheels off track and pass... pick up the 5 seconds and sail off into the distance depriving us of Fernando trying his hardest to get passed with Grosjean defending well...instead we will just watch Fernando dissapear... boring... yawn


now that it's legal, it won't be cool anymore...


Those new rules make sense, fine by me.

Glad they're also making them complete the in-lap after finish, that's more fair.


they just don't get it do they. they have attempted to completely sanitise what is meant to be a spontaneous emotional display. maybe they should have sue barker come along and make the runner up cry too


Great - common sense.

Just one comment

"Vettel was last year fined €25,000 for performing donuts"

Vettel was not fined for the donuts, he was fined for not bringing the car to parc ferme


Great now that teams only have 5 engines year- no one will do it until theyve won the championship- assuming they won the race!..Right rule at the wrong time..FIA do it again !


Hope the new rules ban the awful podium interviews. The only time actual questions get asked is when Brundle is up there. All other times are softly softly PR opportunity type questions from Eddie Jordan and the like.


We can only hope, but to be honest I switch off now before they even get to the podium.


with you on this one Matt & Random 79. I only watch the podium at Monza


that's cool!


Doughnuts intended for after a race win will have to be planed before the car leaves the garage for its place on the grid, the amount of fuel needed will have to be added to that of the out-lap + the warm-up lap + the 100kg of lights-to-flag race fuel + the in-lap + the one litre of extractable fuel.

My estimate is the car/s will leave the garage with approx 105/110kg of fuel.

The 100kg of fuel that can be consumed at a maximum flow rate of 100kg/h will have to last a race of approx 90 minutes which means the fuel flow rate during a race will have to average 66kg/h and in a race such as Singapore it will have to average 50kg/h.


Given its the FIA, you can bet the donout will not be real... it will be some hydraulic spinning lift, with a smoke machine... the driver will merely press a button, to fake it.

The spin will be controlled so that certain sponsors will get an x amount of TV time.



So we now have the need to legislate post race celebrations - has F1 gone completely mad. What next, rules to ensure that drivers must "negotiate the circuit at all times with the application of appropriate levels of acceleration/braking/steering lock dependent upon surface conditions"...and so on...


F1 has already regulated most of what you say... its called 'driving to deltas'.


I don't get this donut rule change at all, it seems to have missed the point completely. When Vettel first did it last year in India, he was celebrating winning the WDC, not the race. So I take it if you win the WDC but not the race you still can't do donuts, right?


closing in to nascar circus ?!?!

why not slalom esses ?


Let's see .... the last race of the season is now worth double points. Does that mean the winner gets to do two sets of donuts .........?


Crikey, how boring. What next, a Marussia sponsored by Greggs the bakers doing legal donuts(feel free to substitute for your national baking shop chain).

Actually they'd be illegal, unless Marussia won the race. So they'd need the deal in place for Oz then as that'll be their best shot 😉

As others have said, it's all a bit stale 'legalising it'.

Whatever next? Legalising a driver's overall patch saying 'Sex Breakfast of Champions' to the top F1 'shagger' !?


At lest let's see if Vettel's haters can give him credit for this positive change!!!


Kimi. The original donut king!


Good move, now just scrap double points please.

Tornillo Amarillo


Rules are rules until they are changed.


Actually the new penalty rule is shockingly inconsistent. If you happen to be ready to go to the end of the race, or are due to pit, the penalty is minor. If not, say you arw on lap 4 trying to so a 30 lap stint, it is worse than a drive through because you must pit within 2 laps, this is much much worse than double points and dumb donut rules, i am pulling my hair out!.

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