At the 2021 Hungarian Grand Prix, the drivers used intermediate tyres at the start of the race, and then a massive collision happened that caused a red flag. The race resumed behind the safety car and on the final lap of the safety car, all the drivers except Lewis pitted for medium tyres.

My question is, can a driver change their tyres during a red flag session? When a race is red-flagged, all the drivers enter the pit lane, so can they change their tyres during that time?

1 Answer 1


Yes. Drivers are able to change their tyres while they're in the pit lane during a red flag period. They may also do things like replace damaged front wings.

One example would be the 2021 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix: after Mick Schumacher crashed, the safety car was called out and several drivers pitted for fresh tyres, only for the race to be red-flagged a couple of laps later. The drivers that hadn't pitted were then able to change their tyres during the red-flag period, giving them a significant advantage over the drivers who had pitted during the safety car period.

  • A better question would be why would they not let this happen. If a car needs service, it should be serviced to avoid further issues. I'm no race expert but that's just my logic. Commented May 3 at 17:11

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