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FIA Tackles Mysterious Fire Problem At Chinese GP

Naman Gopal Srivastava

FIA Tackles Mysterious Fire Problem At Chinese GP

The Chinese GP weekend has been a curious affair so far, with multiple unexplained grass fires taking place. Turn 7 has been the venue for both fires, causing a slight damper to the weekend. The FIA has taken note of the same and has since deployed certain safety measures to ensure another fire doesn’t disrupt the remaining proceedings. 

As updated on X (formerly Twitter) by F1 Journalist Chris Medland, the FIA understands that the spontaneous fires could perhaps be a result of the sparks flying off from the back of the cars. The sparks may be igniting the fires in the grass run-off area, but they are still not confident of it being the primary reason.

Thus far, there have been two incidents involving fires at the Shanghai International Circuit. The first happened on Friday morning during the only free practice session. It led to the session being red-flagged for some time. The same section caught fire at the end of SQ1, delaying SQ2 briefly. 

Hoping to not let another fire disrupt the running of the weekend, FIA has taken preemptive measures around Turn 7. They will be watering down the grass so it remains damp and doesn’t catch fire, updated Chris Medland on Twitter. Additionally, there will also be an emergency fire response team on standby at the corner.

Chinese GP fires remain a mystery to the officials

Various theories have been flying around trying to explain the spontaneous fires that keep erupting during the Chinese GP. One of them suggests the presence of methane gas seeping up through the ground and igniting.

The FIA sent a dedicated team to assess the area and come up with an explanation. While they failed to pinpoint a reason, the team was able to successfully deny the presence of any flammable material or substance. 

With theories of flammable gasses dismissed, the mystery around the fires remains as strong as ever. The theory of sparks igniting the grass remains the most credible but isn’t a very convincing argument. Plenty of other tracks also have grass run-offs and encounter sparks flying onto them. But there have never been such fires at any of those venues.

Even the Shanghai track has never experienced the phenomenon, although, the current-generation cars are running on the track for the first time. Hence, until FIA can come up with a valid explanation, the mystery around the same shall linger on.

Post Edited By:Aishwary Gaonkar

About the author

Naman Gopal Srivastava

Naman Gopal Srivastava


Naman is an F1 writer at The SportsRush. Initially a football fanatic who worships Puyol and Leo Messi, Naman soon fell in love with the world of F1 upon reading about Jim Clarke. While the current era drivers do fascinate him, Naman still chooses to idolize Clarke and Ayrton Senna. When he is not busy watching the highlights of some of the greatest races of his idols, Naman can be found scribbling little snippets in his diary of poems or out in the town, exploring new places to eat.

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