#F1 Daily News and Comment: Wednesday 28th January 2015

•January 28, 2015 • 5 Comments

DN&C_header_EXPRESS_4

This page will be updated throughout the day.

Please if you are on Twitter press the tweet button below. If you re-write and tweet individual story headlines don’t forget to include #F1.

You may not realise how hugely important this is and has helped grow our community significantly

Previously on TheJudge13:

TJ13 Go-Karting Event on 28th March 2015 – Not Quite #F1 But Will Be Fun!

#TJ13 #F1 Courtroom Podcast: FIA on Life support!!!

An open invitation to all members of the TJ13 community – “What do YOU want to know about our podcast crew?
Please use the comments section to ask an opening question for our podcast regulars to answer. Remember, the best answers are often given if the opening question is not F1 related. (Ed’s Note: What have we started!)


OTD Lite 2005 – British journalists as biased as ever!

Red Bull still designing/ building their 2015 challenger

Ferrari confident of direction heading into Jerez

Lotus confirms 2015 Mercedes PU for Jerez test

The Usher’s Caption Competition

Force India pull out of Jerez


OTD Lite 2005 – British journalists as biased as ever!

“The fact yesterday’s meeting went ahead with only one team present will aggravate the divisions already splitting the sport,” noted the Guardian. “It reinforces the view that Ferrari has an uncomfortably close relationship with the governing body.”

20130502PHT07915_originalFor any long time readers of my articles or postings – it will come as no surprise that I am not fond of the British F1 press. In the same manner that Ferrari carries a certain presence about them for being simply Ferrari, many of the British media carry their arrogance and bias on to the printed parchment too.

The above quote comes from Britain’s Guardian newspaper and was in reference to a meeting that the FIA’s President Max Mosley called about possible rule changes. The only team that was present was Ferrari as the newspaper’s correspondent gleefully wrote.

It was views like this which saw the FIA re-branded as the Ferrari International Assistance. However, the reality was that the rules in 2005 penalised Ferrari heavily due to handicapping their single biggest advantage – tyres.

Until recently, the Guardian’s F1 correspondent was journalist Alan Henry – who writes the internet entries for Mclaren – no doubt alongside another ex-journalist Matt Bishop who also wrote prejudicially about the Scuderia.

Further back in the annuls of F1 print, another associate of these chaps is Nigel Roebuck – who made no attempt to hide his dislike for Ayrton Senna and Didier Pironi – whilst being close personal friends of both Alain Prost and Gilles Villeneuve.

Be aware – be very aware..

The Grumpy Jackal.

Top

Red Bull still designing/ building their 2015 challenger

In days of yore – before the internet took over as the de rigeur manner by which to reveal a new F1 car – teams would work until the last possible moment to take advantage of wind tunnel time. The team would then depart for a remote and distant location and begin testing their new challenger before the start of the season.

Much of this running would help identify faults inherent in the car before it turned a wheel in anger or would guide the engineers in their never-ending search for more speed. Mclaren famously turned up at the Imola test session before the start of the 1988 season with a new car and a new engine. By the end of the morning, the MP4-4 had delivered lap times 2.5 seconds faster than anything the competition had managed all winter.

Maybe there’s hope for Mclaren fans this year….

In the 21st century, cars have been built to finer tolerances with reliability that is almost unheard of and several teams will leave their unveiling until the last possible moment. The reasons behind this haven’t really changed in a generation. Primarily this prevents the teams rivals from copying their solutions and it allows the team further time to refine their design.

If we are to believe Spiceboy Horner, in 2015, Red Bull has found itself chaotic final stages of preparation before this weekend’s test session in Jerez.

“The car is not ready yet,” Horner said at a media event in Milton Keynes on Tuesday. “The car is flat out into car build at the moment, so it is probably the shortest production and assembly in ten seasons. It is unbelievable what the factory has turned around so far, but there is plenty to do before Sunday.”

“After the first test last year, hopefully this one cannot be any worse than that. I think we managed about four laps over four days and the car would either stop on track or set on fire. It has been a far more positive winter compared to last year. We know where the benchmark is and what we need to achieve.”

“As the team continues to evolve and grow, it has been I think the most impressive winter we have had as a team. That is in terms of everything coming together – in terms of the car being produced in the shortest time ever, and the design hitting all their deadlines and targets.”

The again – this could all be a ploy to lull the opposition into a false sense of security. After all, the RB10 did turn out to be the second best car to the Mercedes work’s team entry in 2014 – and given the Renault PU, it must have been a hell of a chassis.

When the 2015 Red Bull car finally hits the track in anger, it will be the last of the Adrian Newey creations. Christian Horner tells AMuS that, “He [Newey] is the designer of this car.” However going forward, Adrian will spend no more than 50% on F1 projects, but will be relieved to assist with the British America’s cup project.

Car reveals remaining

Tomorrow: McLaren

Friday: Ferrari & Sauber

Saturday: Toro Rosso (pit lane Jeez)

Sunday: Mercedes launch (pit lane Jerez)

Red Bull: Will just roll out of the garage and begin testing (TJ13 exclusive)

Top

Ferrari confident of direction heading into Jerez

Williams launched their FW37 last week and their technical director, Pat Symonds, spoke of the impact that the new nose regulations for 2015 had had on the design of the new car.  Yet his counter part at Ferrari was somewhat more measured in his views but Allison asserts that Ferrari has adapted well to the change.

We’ve had to change the way we package the front end of the car to some extent, the way the front wing works and the nose and the turning vanes. But it’s not so big a deal for us, it’s something we adopted early on in the year and just moved on from there … This year’s car is certainly a lot better looking than last year’s car – prettier round the front, tighter round the back and that makes for a nicer car.

Unsurprisingly Allison believes the team has focused on three main areas for improvement and that the new Ferrari SF15-T can close the gap to both Mercedes and Renault.

“The guidelines are pretty simple; last year we were too slow, not good enough, so fundamentally make a competitive car. As always the challenge for a competitive car is lots of downforce, lots of horsepower, good driveability, so we’ve been working all three of those things”

Top

Lotus confirms 2015 Mercedes PU for Jerez test

Tobias Grunner of AMuS has been reporting that only two Mercedes powered cars at Jerez using the 2015 PU, would be the Brackley based team and their primary customer Williams. Both Lotus and Force India were expected to be running the 2014 engine at the first test session.

However, yesterday Enstone tweeted rather curtly. “Contrary to what you may read, we are using the latest Mercedes engine in the E23, not something from the archives”.

The German correspondent was contrite and tweeted his apologies.

Much of the confusion emanated from an interview given by Toto Wolff last week, where he appeared to mock the efforts of his rivals by suggesting that Mercedes would not be running their new engine until the teams return to Spain for the first race of the European season.

Since then both the Silver Arrows and Williams have confirmed they will use the 2015 power-plant but Lotus also will be using the same specification.

THAT SAID, it would be ridiculous not to run the test engines during the test – but this is no guarantee they will be used down under at the season opener in March.

Top

Top

The Usher’s Caption Competition

for an alternative view on F1, follow TJ13’s Usher

during previews to the Italian Formula One Grand Prix at the Autodromo Nazionale di Monza on September 6, 2012 in Monza, Italy.

http://f1-theusher13.tumblr.com/

Top

Force India pull out of Jerez

Force India had indicated to AMuS last week, that they would be running the 2014 VJM07 in Jerez this year.

The breaking news is that the team will not be running in Jerez at all.

Last week, Michael Schmidt revealed, “The team has changed wind tunnels from its own facility in Brackley to the Toyota [tunnel] in Cologne. The engineers under technical director Andy Green have found new insights into the aerodynamic problems of the past,”

For this reason, the 2014 car was to be used whilst the team finalised the VJM08 in time for the Barcelona test.

TJ13 commented at the time that teams failing to bring their new designs to the first winter test, have never faired well during the ensuing racing season. However, there was still significant mileage ( ;) )in Force India running their 2014 car to collect data form the updated Mercedes 2015 power unit.

Once again, this will lead to speculation that money’s too tight too mention in Silverstone. Mallya, who once who once bought Gandhi’s wire rimmed spectacles, pocket watch and other personal possessions, has been under increasing financial pressure as the last power house of his empire is being chased to recover some of the estimated $2bn of debt owed by the defunct Kingfisher Airlines.

Despite the car launch in Mexico and the new sponsors, Force India is short on its budget for 2015.

At the launch of the 2015 livery in Mexico 6 days ago, the name Sahara is still prominent as the title sponsor. Yet the joint owner of Force India, Subrata Roy, known as Mr. Sahara within the finance organisation was imprisoned last March and remains in jail in New Dehli.

Sahara is alleged to have defrauded millions of small Indian investors in a pyramid style scheme – set up to invest in property. However, the Indian Authorities believe there is growing evidence that there are few if any investors, and the funds Sahara received were from the ‘black market’ and Sahara was laundering this cash.

top

 

#F1 Daily News and Comment: Tuesday 27th January 2015

•January 27, 2015 • 45 Comments

DN&C_header_EXPRESS_4

This page will be updated throughout the day.

Please if you are on Twitter press the tweet button below. If you re-write and tweet individual story headlines don’t forget to include #F1.

You may not realise how hugely important this is and has helped grow our community significantly

Previously on TheJudge13:

FOM improper use of DMCA to enforce trademarks

TJ13 Go-Karting Event on 28th March 2015 – Not Quite #F1 But Will Be Fun!

#TJ13 #F1 Courtroom Podcast: FIA on Life support!!!

An open invitation to all members of the TJ13 community – “What do YOU want to know about our podcast crew?
Please use the comments section to ask an opening question for our podcast regulars to answer. Remember, the best answers are often given if the opening question is not F1 related. (Ed’s Note: What have we started!)


OTD Lite 1974- Brazilian GP legend’s sideburns

2015 Winter testing imminent

Mercedes likely to maintain engine advantage for some time

HP joins forces with Sauber

Ericsson wins Sweden’s top driver Award

The Usher’s Caption Competition

Wolff continues to fuel speculation


OTD Lite 1974- Brazilian GP legend’s sideburns

Forty one years ago today, Mclaren recorded their tenth Grand Prix victory when Emerson Fittipaldi survived a disintegrating Sao Paulo circuit and torrential rains to take his second home victory on his way to his second World title.

Of course F1 was sexier in the 70’s, drivers shared many of the fashions that rock stars sported and these stunning looking cars were both physical and dangerous to drive.

The race start had been delayed as the track was swept of broken glass which the partisan crowd had launched on to the tarmac ribbon. Possible reasons other than the Brazilians natural partying exuberance were the fact that local boy Fittipaldi had qualified on pole but after the start he found himself Carlos Reutemann and Ronnie Peterson.

Emo took the lead from the Super Swede and continued until on lap 31 the race was abandoned due to a monsoon hitting the circuit.

Emerson Fittipaldi – motor-racing legend, double world champion and a friend of the late Ayrton Senna but perhaps most impressive of all – sideburns to rival Elvis Presley!

70s_Racing_Drivers_01-472x295

The Grumpy Jackal.

Top

2015 Winter testing imminent

With the F1 teams in the middle of launching their new contenders for the 2015 F1 season, details are emerging of which of the teams drivers will be driving on the first day of winter testing in just five days time.

Williams’ Valtteri Bottas will be the first incumbent of the FW37 and will run on the first two days before Felipe Massa takes over on the Tuesday and Wednesday.

Ferrari will also be following a similar plan with new recruit Sebastian Vettel taking the reins of the Prancing Horse for the first two days at Jerez before his team-mate, Kimi Raikkonen, steps into Maranello’s new car which has been christened the SF15-T.

Of more interest is Mclaren running Fernando Alonso for the first and third days of the test with Jenson Button substituting for the Spaniard on the other days.

The first test at Jerez is generally a shakedown of the new designs and to iron out any problems the cars may have. Last year, everyone left Jerez knowing that they trailed Mercedes by some margin. This year their rivals will be hoping to be closer to the Silver Arrows and not allow them to dominate the time sheets once more.

That said, TJ13 has learned that only Williams and Mercedes AMG F1 will be running the  Mercedes 2015 hybrid development engine, while Force India and Lotus will use the 2014 version of the power unit.

It was only a few years ago that Alonso left all of the first four days to his team-mate Felipe Massa as he concentrated on his personal training regime knowing that this test was not about performance development but systems checks.

Last year, the Asturian was available to Ferrari for testing throughout – with the new systems requiring in-depth understanding. It was also an indication of his will to impose himself over the arrival of the Iceman.

Although he is a new recruit for this season, it would appear that it is more than likely that this most astute driver is singling out Jenson Button as a real threat within the Woking infrastructure rather than simply running systems checks with Mclaren and Honda.

Top

Mercedes likely to maintain engine advantage for some time

The Mercedes team’s Enforcer – Paddy Lowe – has maintained a remarkable silence this winter. With his fellow bosses of the Brackley team – Niki Lauda and Toto Wolff – giving interviews seemingly every other day, Lowe has kept his distance from the microphones.

Of course, in a sense, he is under far more pressure than either of his Austrian compatriots as he is the technical director that replaced Ross Brawn.

With his rhetoric last year suggesting the infrastructure that the big man had left behind was inadequate, the need to restructure the various departments and leading a ground breaking team to further glory was never going to be a difficult ask. But Lowe has a problem.

If the 2015 Mercedes does not carry a sizeable advantage over its rivals, it will be natural that Lowe’s leadership will be questioned. He doesn’t have the two decades of experience Ross Brawn had under his belt.

In an interview last year, Lowe proclaimed: “I’ve taken Mercedes Formula 1 team to the next level”. So any sign that the team has been caught would make a mockery of his comments.

Lowe’s recent track record is hardly inspiring. We must remember he was Mclaren’s Technical Director from 2011 – in other words responsible for two of the worst Woking cars the team has ever produced.

Lowe of course is not responsible for the engine design and building work that takes place at Brixworth and the Mercedes’ customer teams appear confident there has been a step forward in the capabilities of the power unit.

Force India technical director Andrew Green has no doubts of the engines improvements. “From the data we have it’s definitely got better from last year, and I’m expecting another step in the middle of the season too. We’re excited about that.”

Lotus CEO Matthew Carter was impressed by the Enstone team’s new working relationship with Mercedes. “Having Mercedes is a huge opportunity for us,” said Carter. “We don’t know what Honda is going to be like, but Ferrari and Renault are obviously looking at doing changes later in the year – which means there will not be that much early on. That could give us a bit of a big advantage earlier in the season.”

If all this is true, then the Mercedes power unit will continue to be the benchmark by which the others are judged – but if Williams is appreciably closer to the Stuttgart works team – questions will be asked of Lowe’s capabilities on the car design front.

Top

HP joins forces with Sauber

Sauber announced yesterday that they had entered a new sponsorship agreement with computer giant Hewlett-Packard after losing their ties with NEC.

HP are helping Sauber to develop a state of the art super computer to be used primarily in the field of computational fluid dynamics. CFD is an area that all the teams are investing heavily in – as real-time limitations of wind-tunnel usage begins have an impact.

Monisha Kalternborn: “We are very pleased to be working with a prestigious brand like Hewlett-Packard. The high technical expertise of Hewlett-Packard HPC Competence Center has allowed us to develop a high-performance computer that is based on the most innovative technologies of Hewlett-Packard. This will improve our performance in the area of CFD. “

Marcel Borgo, Managing Director of Hewlett-Packard Switzerland: “Formula 1’s peak performance requires both human and technological inputs. Hewlett-Packard is very happy to support the Sauber in the High Performance Computing and in so doing to strengthen the team. This is key to helping Sauber’s development team gain a crucial advantage on the track. “

Top

Ericsson wins Sweden’s top driver Award

In possibly one of the most surreal award ceremonies in living memory – Marcus Ericsson won Sweden’s ‘Driver of the Year’ award this past weekend.

Ericsson was routinely beaten by Kamui Kobayashi and in a one off drive at Spa – WEC driver Andre Lotterer out-qualified him by a second.

Without doubt 2014 was a difficult season for the 24 year old Swede. Caterham struggled throughout the season due to financial difficulties – which eventually caused the team to enter administration – missing the American and Brazilian Grand Prix.

At the American event, Marcus and his sponsors decided to transfer their millions in the direction of Hinwil and he signed a deal to drive for the Sauber team.

So as Britain celebrated double World Champion Lewis Hamilton’s rise to glory, Sweden forgot about their true superstar – Ronnie Peterson – and gifted the award to a man who’s best result was an 11th place in Monaco.

Top

The Usher’s Caption Competition

for an alternative view on F1, follow TJ13’s Usher

http%3A%2F%2F36.media.tumblr.com%2Fd4f2658a1eee71bc9af99f4aa191e15e%2Ftumblr_nir2g1tN7e1tzosfgo1_1280

http://f1-theusher13.tumblr.com/

Top

Wolff continues to fuel speculation

TJ13 has previously commented on the different treatment offered to Lewis Hamilton by Mercedes, when compared to how Red Bull and Ferrari have previously treated their star drivers.

Toto Wolff spoke publicly just after the new year about Alonso and Bottas being possible replacements for Hamilton next year, should the team and Lewis be unable to agree a new contract.

Speaking to Bild, Toto Wolff again is re-enforcing this position by stating. “It is always useful to be prepared for all eventualities. Alternatives are always important. But they are alternatives, not priorities,”

Previously, Toto had stated that there would be a meeting immediately following the Abu Dhabi GP, but both parties have since repeatedly sent out the message that no talks have yet taken place yet.

Toto is however positive about the future with Hamilton as he repeats, “Towards the end of last season, we didn’t want to disrupt Lewis’ focus. Now he is back from holiday, we will sit together in the near future,”

“I can say, both parties want to extend [Hamilton’s contract term]. For us, Lewis and Nico are the best and strongest driver combination and therefore we have no reason to change anything.

“Lewis is feeling good in the team and we give him the best car. All this suggests a common future.”

Speculation will regularly continue until a deal is resolved, which is why Ferrari and Red Bull kept these conversations about their star drivers behind closed doors and resolved them long before they became a topic of interest.

top

FOM improper use of DMCA to enforce trademarks

•January 27, 2015 • 11 Comments

untitled

Brought to you by TJ13 writers Andrew Huntley-Jacobs & Mattpt55

Formula One Management Ltd is starting to get tough with social media sites and twitter handles which use F1 as part of their name. TJ13 decided to investigate the matter and have spoken to a number of those contacted by Bernie’s Bullies and a common theme is revealed.

What is clear is that FOM have registered a variety of trade marks and associated logo’s including, ‘F1 FORMULA 1′ logo, ‘F1′ logo, ‘F1 FIA FORMULA ONE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP’ logo, ‘FORMULA ONE PADDOCK CLUB’ logo, F1™, FORMULA ONE™, FORMULA 1™, FIA FORMULA ONE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP™, FORMULA ONE PADDOCK CLUB™, PADDOCK CLUB™ and GRAND PRIX™

Any site or twitter handle using the above is currently at risk of receiving a letter threatening legal action.

Twitter have issued a significant number of emails which begin as follows.

“Hello. The following material has been removed from your account in response to the DMCA [Digital Millenium Copyright Act] takedown notice copied at the bottom of this email.”

Some of the twitter account have been locked forthwith and the users unable to access their accounts and change the offending content, losing all their followers.

Early last year, the following appeared on F1.com.

Warning that trade marks used to identify the brand including ‘F1 FORMULA 1′ logo, ‘F1′ logo, ‘F1 FIA FORMULA ONE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP’ logo, ‘FORMULA ONE PADDOCK CLUB’ logo, F1™, FORMULA ONE™, FORMULA 1™, FIA FORMULA ONE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP™, FORMULA ONE PADDOCK CLUB™, PADDOCK CLUB™ and GRAND PRIX™ have been registered in the UK, EU and internationally as trade marks, in connection with a wide range of goods and services, interested parties are advised that such trade marks cannot be used by third parties without a specific licence or permission.

This list is not exhaustive. Having denied that social media is relevant to F1, it appears that Bernie and FOM maybe clearing the decks to create more space for their own social media agenda.

Protecting a trademark is fairly standard practice and in itself is no big deal, yet for some reason FOM have not been particularly bothered previously about internet and social media uses and one of the website’s we contacted who changed their name in the past year – even wrote to FOM prior to their launch and received no objection to their proposed name or ensuing actions.

untitledFOM have to be seen to be protecting their trade mark – or there is a risk they will lose it. Though the current lengths they are now going to are in stark contrast with Formula One teams like Williams, McLaren, Red Bull and the Scuderia. They also may be doing this illegally.

Some of the internet websites and twitter handles who have been contacted about their use of word marks are http://www.theformula1blog.com, @formula1blog, @F1extra (Now @Motorsportsextra), F1 in Pubs (Now Motorsports in Pubs), The F1 Times (Now Grand Prix Times), @Formula1Dragon, @sp_FormulaOne, @FollowFormulaOne, @ThePitStopKid, @deFormula_1 @FordRSEurope. There are others we have not named due to the sensitive information they provided TJ13 with.

Even when just writing about Formula One, people have to be careful as in editorial pieces as even the word mark F1 is protected. FOM state:

“Permitted Word Marks can be used editorially on a website so long as the use is to inform or report and not to brand the website”.

However, there are still a large number of websites and twitter handles failing the following F1 trade mark protection test

“Our Permitted Word Marks cannot be incorporated into or registered as domain names for commercialised websites. Use within domain names for non-commercialised websites (e.g. fan sites or news sites) may be tolerated at our discretion.

Our Permitted Word Marks may be used after a domain name as a sub-domain name so long as the use does not make any unauthorised association with third parties. For example, “www.racingfanatic.com/formula1”

The international law about the ownership of internet domain names and is complex, and it is not clear whether FOM can in fact enforce the above. Particularly the inclusion of ‘F1’ in a domain name, where this is not the main identity of the publishing entity.

For example, people using the format, ‘mysurnameF1’ will be something more difficult for FOM to attack, as the ID of the entity is primarily the surname of the owner of the twitter handle or web page.

Ecclestone lost a legal battle at the turn of the millennium to wrest the F1.com domain name from businesswoman and F1 fan Nicky Morris. She had bought the domain name and established one of the first dedicated F1 websites. It eventually cost Mr. E an estimated $10m to acquire the domain name.

untitledThere are hundreds of individuals and fan sites at present who risk having their sites taken down or their twitter handles locked under the current actions from FOM. However, the following simple guidelines should ensure this does not happen.

Do not use ANY of the F1 registered artwork. Most of this resolves around the F1 logo and its derivatives. Similar fakes based upon ‘F1’ may also be subject to take down notices

Secondly always run a disclaimer.

“This website is unofficial and is not associated in any way with the Formula One group of companies. F1, FORMULA ONE, FORMULA 1, FIA FORMULA ONE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP, GRAND PRIX and related marks are trade marks of Formula One Licensing B.V. “

Strictly speaking this disclaimer should be inserted into the footer of every webpage that refers to FORMULA 1 racing or the FIA FORMULA ONE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP.

A similar disclaimer in a twitter header should also be displayed.

However, it appears the heavy handed tactics of FOM’s lawyers may not be legitimate

FOM’s tool of choice has been to issue DMCA take down notices, but a DMCA is supposed to be used only for copyright material. Most of the DMCAs issued by FOM have been for alleged TRADEMARK infringements.

Copyright and Trademark are separate and different protections.

Further, the EU has no equivalent of the USA tool known as a DMCA. The law in Europe requires the petitioner to demonstrate properly that a user is breaching their trade mark or copyright. Merely pointing the host at a web page and asserting copyright ownership is insufficient evidence.

untitledThe Improper use of a DMCA to shut down a Twitter or Facebook account will almost certainly mean the issuer is liable for any damages to the user. This was held to be the case in CROSSFIT Inc v Alvies – a case heard in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California in 2014.

Using a DMCA takedown notice to assert what is in fact a trademark claim may lead to section 512(f) liability (LINK)

If you have been locked out of a Twitter account or Facebook account under threat of a DMCA, you should appeal the matter with the appropriate social media entity on which you were posting material.

When setting up TJ13 there was a fair amount of consideration given to the name of the site. Of course we have to thank Grand-pappy Judge and his ancestors for allowing us to use the family name.

But seriously, despite Ecclestone giving the impression he isn’t interested in social media, clearly FOM’s lawyers have ramped up their activity over the past 12 months.

Fortunately, it appears that FOM cannot restrict the use of the twitter hashtag #F1, which is a veritable 25 lane super highway of traffic where anyone who is looking for Formula One information can go.

untitledIt would surely make more sense were FOM to be encouraging the fans use of their brands on social media, simply because many of the marketing tools used to assess global reach, count up the number of times a brand is mentioned, giving it a score which can then be used to negotiate commercial arrangements with sponsors and advertisers.

Fan website and twitter handles could be requested to pay a nominal fee of $1 which would ensure FOM are protecting their trade marks.

The marketing angle is neither Mercedes nor McLaren are hunting people down for using their trade mark words or names as part of someone’s social media presence – and neither is Ferrari who were deemed the world’s most recognisable brand in 2014.

One of the F1 teams who are most well practised in their marketing, will demonstrate very soon the power of social media as a marketing tool. This will see them rack up hundred’s of millions of credits as they become the most talked about entity in Formula One for weeks on end.

untitled

This article should not be construed as offering legal advice. Should you be in legal dispute over your F1 internet presence, you should consult a qualified lawyer specialising in the field of digital media and trademark/copyright. TJ13 is not liable for any actions taken by individuals without proper legal counsel.

#F1 Daily News and Comment: Monday 26th January 2015

•January 26, 2015 • 35 Comments

DN&C_header_EXPRESS_4

This page will be updated throughout the day.

Please if you are on Twitter press the tweet button below. If you re-write and tweet individual story headlines don’t forget to include #F1.

You may not realise how hugely important this is and has helped grow our community significantly

Previously on TheJudge13:

On This Day in #F1: 26th January 1975: Godfather wins Grand Prix

TJ13 Go-Karting Event on 28th March 2015 – Not Quite #F1 But Will Be Fun!

Voice of the #F1 Fans: Mercedes drivers: How close was it really?

#TJ13 #F1 Courtroom Podcast: FIA on Life support!!!

An open invitation to all members of the TJ13 community – “What do YOU want to know about our podcast crew?
Please use the comments section to ask an opening question for our podcast regulars to answer. Remember, the best answers are often given if the opening question is not F1 related. (Ed’s Note: What have we started!)


OTD Lite 1945 – Birth of a true British Hero

Lewis Hamilton plans for his musical debut

Haas F1 2016 plans progressing well

Marussia looking to be present on Melbourne grid

The Usher’s Caption Competition

Latin flair for Sauber

Ferrari ‘666’ has a proper name

Lotus Launch their E23 Hybrid (Update: 17:02 GMT)

Ferrari engine fired up


OTD Lite 1945 – Birth of a true British Hero

It is unlikely that many people will have heard or remember the name David Purley. He competed in just 11 Grand Prix in the mid 70’s and would suffer an accident which at the time was the highest recorded G-force survived by a human being.

In only his second Grand Prix, at Zandvoort in Holland 1973, Roger Williamson’s car flipped on to its side after a tyre exploded. His car caught fire and Purley abandoned his own race to attempt the rescue of the stricken man. The harrowing images were captured on film and are not for the faint hearted. Purley would receive the George medal for his bravery.

In 1977 during a British Grand Prix practice session, his throttle stuck open as he approached Becketts corner at Silverstone. He decelerated from 108mph to 0 in just 26 inches sustaining a then record 179.8G.

PurleysmangledLEC

After his recuperation he raced again before turning to competition acrobatics for his thrills. He crashed fatally off the coast of England in July 1985.

The Grumpy Jackal.

Top

Lewis Hamilton plans for his musical debut

Lewis Hamilton has long been associated with the music industry. Not only via is his ‘significant other’ ex Pussycat Doll – Nicole Scherzinger – but he often is seen mixing with music celebrities on Twitter and in the paddocks of the world.

Over the years a multitude of rap stars – including Ice Cube – have attended as Hamilton’s guest and it is no secret that he has spent time working on his own first album.

B7PzNSJCQAAdt9Y

After parting from his father’s management, Hamilton signed up to Simon Fuller’s XIX Entertainment company and until late last year had been represented by the company that established the Spice Girls in popular culture some twenty years ago.

Britain’s Telegraph newspaper is reporting that since breaking his association with XIX, Hamilton is negotiating his own terms with Mercedes but has been signed by Mayfair-based Purple PR. Their clientele include pop royalty such as Adele, Beyonce, Calvin Harris, Dizzee Rascal and the aforementioned Ice Cube, though girlfriend Scherzinger is not part of Purple’s portfolio.

The 30 year old World Champion has been in Paris this week at the Louis Vitton menswear fashion show. Representatives of Purple have been working with him before he begins his title defence year next week in Southern Spain. As ever – beyond his F1 aspirations and his desire to increase his charitable work – his signing to this new agency shows where his focus lies in regards his future.

Top

Haas F1 2016 plans progressing well

haas-automation-436x291Haas F1 Team Principal Gunther Steiner has been speaking about the work in progress as the American team prepares for their 2016 debut season.

First was a rebuttal of rumours which indicated that Haas had bought the rights to the defunct Marusia team, “We have not bought the intellectual property, all the rumours are untrue and we are developing our own car.”

With the team’s employees currently numbering 50, Haas still searching for a lead designer but any new car will not run before the 2016 winter tests. “We don’t want a car before everybody else, it makes no sense. Before the test the car would already be obsolete so we are aiming to build it as late as possible so as to develop it as well as we can. It would be a waste of time and money to build a car merely for testing. “

“At the moment, everything is going according to plan. We are working closely with Ferrari and they have the knowledge which we want to learn. They are a good partner. The collaboration could extend to the drivers too. Gutierrez is most likely the favourite but there are options in Marciello as well as Vergne and Sutil who although not in F1 have vast experience.”

“It’s a difficult decision as we won’t know who will be available in four months time but ultimately our aim is we want to be respected, do the best we can and not be embarrassing. I’m confident but again, there could be a last minute rush or something that could pose a problem but that’s racing. Our team will be able to overcome these obstacles but there is no doubt we will be on track in 2016.”

Haas will benefit from a change in the deadline for the 2016 technical and sporting regulations to be agreed. In previous years this has been in June, however, the FIA have brought forward this date to March 31st, This means the team’s can begin their planning much earlier.

Top

Marussia looking to be present on Melbourne grid

According to reports in the Italian press, Marussia may well be saved and turn out at the start of the 2015 season after all – if the unknown investors that the administrators are currently speaking to step forward.

Speculation suggests that a consortium from India is currently speaking to Ferrari about the outstanding debts from the non payment for the supply of their power unit last year.

John Booth, the team principal of the team is seeking to return – with Marussia being rechristened to its earlier name of Manor. The team would have to move from its current base in Banbury to a new factory based in Sheffield as their old facility has been purchased by the Haas F1 team.

With the prize money that would be available for the team’s 9th place last year, this allows the team’s creditors to be paid and makes finding a solution somewhat easier. With Bernie Ecclestone working hard to have 11 teams present on the grid in Australia, the team is currently updating their designs for the 2015 car which in part explains why the auctions were cancelled recently.

As ever in F1, the search for funds is relentless and Booth is looking for drivers that have sponsorship money to pay for their F1 drive. Obviously not an ideal situation but the intoxication of being part of this global circus has made fools of many a man.

Top

The Usher’s Caption Competition

for an alternative view on F1, follow TJ13’s Usher

http%3A%2F%2F40.media.tumblr.com%2Fc27c428c9dd2389467a47e5c8c8d8e74%2Ftumblr_nip0t3Fjac1r8349wo1_500

http://f1-theusher13.tumblr.com/

Top

Latin flair for Sauber

It is often said, how you dress reveals a lot about who you are; and the same argument could be made for Formula One car liveries.

untitledSauber have for a number of years not had the most adventurous or exciting livery with its rather drab grey and white colouring. Yet with the recruitment of Brazilian driver, Filipe Nasr, the Swiss based F1 team are set to clad their cars with some Latin flair.

Having lost certain Mexican sponsor’s Sauber will benefit from Nasr’s major backer, Banco de Brazil, shoes logo colours are blue and yellow. In 2014 Nasr drove for Carlin in GP2 and the car’s livery reflected this colour scheme.

This said, the winter has not been trouble free for Sauber, and there is some uncertainty as to whether they will make the test starting this weekend coming in Jerez.

untitledThat is the claim of the Portuguese-language publication Universo, claiming the Swiss team’s colour choice is in deference to new driver Felipe Nasr’s major backer Banco do Brasil. When asked about this deadline, a spokesperson for the team would merely state they were “working to have the car ready for the first test in Jerez.”

top

Ferrari ‘666’ has a proper name

The informal working title given to the Scuderia Ferrari’s 2015 F1 challenger has been the source of much amusement amongst Formula One fans and the topic of ‘Comment of the Week’ on a recent TJ13 podcast.

Project ‘666’, the number of the beast became the Maranello race engineers’ nickname for the 2015 car and was first divulged in the Autumn of 2014.

untitledThe official name for the Ferrari car this year will be the SF15-T, which is fairly similar to the previous car – the F14-T.

The ‘S’ stands for Scuderia and is designated to pay homage to the race team, and as was the case last year the ‘T’ is reference to the turbo engine.

Ferrari fans voted from a short list for the 2014 name, however this year, Sergio Marchionne has made the decision. The car is set for an online launch this Friday, before Sebastian Vettel takes it for a run in Jerez on the first day of testing this weekend.

2007: F2007

2008: F2008

2009: F60

2010: F10

2011:150° Italia (changed from F150, after Ford enforced its branding rights)

2012: F2012

2013: F138

2014: F14 T

2015: SF15-T

The world of F1 tech awaits with baited breath to see if the Italian team persist with the pull rod suspension system – or have decided ditched it.

top

Lotus Launch their E23 Hybrid Update: 17:02 GMT)

Today the world saw Lotus’ newest family member, the Lotus E23 Hybrid.

Lotus E23 Hybrid

Gone is the double pronged nose and this is replaced by a shorter one, with an bit of a step at the tip.

untitled

Note on this picture the addition air intake ovals on each side of the roll bar. This design has now split the air intake into three to direct to different areas under the engine cover. Further, this bulier air intake results in smaller side pods, assisting air flow around the car to the diffuser.

The car does look rather sparse in terms of sponsors names. Gone are Total, Rexona, Clear and Burn – though the Microsoft Dynamics logo has grown somewhat.

Matthew Carter, Lotus F1 Team CEO:

The E23 Hybrid represents a new era for Lotus F1 Team, not only in the change to a Mercedes Benz Power Unit, but also it is the fruition of a busy winter behind the scenes. Improvements within our Design, Aero and Simulation departments have all contributed to the development of a car which is a huge step forward.

As a team we are confident that the new car coupled with additions to the Race team will enable a huge leap forward and we are full of optimism going into the new season. It is time to put the disappointment of last season behind us and benefit from 12 months of hard work; we are ready to return to our rightful place at the pinnacle of the sport.

Nick Chester, Lotus F1 Team Technical Director:

Lotus E23 FrontThe E23 Hybrid represents a massive step forward for us. It’s no secret that we struggled with last year’s car so we’ve targeted every area that caused us an issue. We’ve made strong progress in the wind tunnel as well as in areas such as packaging and cooling.

We expect the E23 to perform far, far better than its predecessor. In terms of what’s new, obviously a massive change for us is a new Power Unit supplier. We made this change as it looked and looks to be the one area of the car which could bring us the greatest performance gain. It’s not just performance, but reliability and driveability as well as packaging and cooling too.

Lotus E23 RearThe E22 did deliver good figures in the wind tunnel, even if it was difficult to unlock its potential, so we’ve paid more attention to making the characteristics of the car more adaptable. In terms of the suspension, we were delivered something of a blow last year when the front-rear interconnected suspension was outlawed mid-season. The E23’s suspension design is specific to the updated regulations so we’re not trying to update a system originally intended to work a different way.

We learnt a lot in many areas of the car over the course of 2014 so there are many lessons which have been applied. We know we’ve made a big step. We won’t know how our car will fare in relative terms until we’re out in action at a Grand Prix, but we certainly expect to be much more competitive than last year.

Lotus E23 Side

Finances and Performance

Matthew Carter also reveals that the teams finances are on a better footing than in 2013. “Our budget for this year, although reduced compared to 2013, is similar to last season. We have a couple of new sponsors that, although not featured on the car today, will be there for the first race.

“A lot of the back office work at the business is producing results, so financially we are looking good.

“And it is important to say that if we do get more money, then that will go straight on to improving car performance.

“In previous years such additions may have gone in to the black hole of debt, but now it can go straight on to the car.”

Having shifted engine supplier, Carter is bullish the team will make a leap forward on what was a woeful 2014.

“We are hoping that we can challenge and get around where Williams are,” said Carter, who revealed that windtunnel figures for the new E23 had been hugely encouraging.

“I don’t want to be too optimistic, because it is important to be realistic, but finishing third or fourth in the constructors’ championship is really our target.

“But that is largely dependent on how Red Bull cope with Renault, what Honda do with McLaren and where Ferrari get to.”

Update GMT 17:02

Lotus and Force India will run Mercedes 2014 engine in Jerez, whilst Williams and Mercedes AMG F1 will be running a 2015 development power unit.

top

Ferrari engine fired up

There is definite change in the air at Maranello. After what has been a decidedly dated social media presence from the Scuderia, today they release this very 21st century piece of teaser material and marketed it on twitter.

http://2015f1car.ferrari.com/desktop/en/#engine

That said, the noise resembles something which may have haunted both Raikkonen and Alonso in the dreams during 2014

top

On This Day in #F1: 26th January 1975: Godfather wins Grand Prix

•January 26, 2015 • 3 Comments

Brought to you by TheJudge13 chronicler: The Grumpy Jackal

- 1975: Michael Corleone wins his first Grand Prix

Michael had overseen the family’s crime syndicate grow to titanic proportions when he approached friends in Italy about a possible diversion to his nefarious activities in America.

He had eliminated all his rivals in various daring missions but it was his search for redemption – for the unfortunate loss of his brother in a fishing accident – that led him to absolve his guilt in the most dangerous pursuit on earth.

His Italian contacts did not have the required authority to place him at Ferrari – Maranello’s power was too much to overcome – so he settled for the alternative manufacturer that had been involved in the sad loss of his first wife, Apollonia.

The only problem for Alfa-Romeo was that they didn’t have a car ready for competition, they merely supplied a team called Brabham with the power-plant.

When the team owner – Bernie Ecclestone – was approached with “a deal which was too good to refuse” he was only too grateful to be of service…

At the thought that you may all feel I have taken leave of my senses, I’d best explain the connection.

Al Pacino was the star of both the “Godfather” films and the 1977 Bobby Deerfield movie. In this film, Pacino wore the same helmet as Brazilian Carlos Pace and today is the anniversary of Pace’s single Grand Prix victory.

The original, daunting 8km Interlagos circuit in Sao Paulo is the setting for this historic event.

images

Jose Carlos Pace had qualified his Brabham BT44 only sixth for the race but had converted this into third position by the end of the first lap after he passed Niki Lauda, Clay Regazzoni and a slow-starting Emerson Fittipaldi.

Within five laps Pace’s team-mate – Carlos Reutemann – began struggling on his tyres and Jean Pierre Jarier overtook him for the lead.

Pace caught Reutemann and would drive straight past him on lap 14 to take up the chase to the leading Shadow. Reutemann’s race disintegrated as he kept falling away from his team-mate and would eventually finish a distant eighth.

As ever – throughout Jarier’s career – his car developed a technical problem which allowed Pace to close the 25 second gap – a fuel metering unit had failed and he coasted to a stop on lap 33.

Pace took the lead and went on to win the race; followed home by Fittipaldi who had driven a breath-taking race to recover from sixth to within six seconds of the winner.
The Sao Paulistas in the grandstands went into ecstasy with the result and not just because they were of Brazilian nationality; Pace and Fittipaldi were also natives of the city.

As were Ayrton Senna, Rubens Barrichello and Felipe Massa; which brings up a question I have often pondered.

With World Champions of the calibre of Fittipaldi and Senna; race winners with eleven wins each in Barrichello and Massa – how is it that a great international track is named after a one time winner who was killed in an aircraft accident in 1977?

It was named in his honour in 1985, yet even if we allow for the fact that three of the names hadn’t achieved anything up to that point, Fittipaldi was twice World Champion and a fourteen time Grand Prix winner before Pace was killed…

TJ13 Go-Karting Event on 28th March 2015 – Not Quite #F1 But Will Be Fun!

•January 25, 2015 • 38 Comments

A letter from Spanners Ready. Please come play with me?

Dear Judge 13 readers,

The thing I love about this website more than anything is the sense of community. The way people come back again and again to comment, fight and bond is what kept me a fan of TJ13. As a member of the crew it’s what drives me forward and makes me excited to plug in my microphone and spend a couple of hours talking to you every week.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI want to take that to the next level very soon. On March 28th I’m going down to Rye House Go-Karting in Hertfordshire for an hour smashing around their awesome track with a few of the guys from the Podcast and we want YOU to join us.

We are running a session on their Pro Kart, twin engine 160cc 4 stroke, Honda powered karts which reach speeds of up to 65 mph. These karts are bags of fun and are powerful enough for some real racing action. This is NOT your local indoor track where there’s no space or power to overtake and the lightest guy wins. This is a proper karting experience. 26 Karts on track at once is crazy!!

But more than that, this a chance to come and meet some like minded folk from an online community you love. Whether you come alone or bring some friends, you can be sure that everyone there will be an F1 fan and everyone will have something in common.

We are currently looking at an hour on track. 15 minutes qualifying and then 40 minutes racing (either one race or two shorter ones). That session would normally cost £86 pounds per racer but our friends at Rye House are offering this session to TJ13 for £69 per driver. That is more than you’ll pay at your local indoor track… but this is not your local indoor track.

We are initially looking to fill a grid of 26 while we gauge how many of you would be interested in coming (international racers welcome). If number increase we will adapt the session but I would like to get the ball rolling as soon as possible. Please register your interest in the comments or tweet me @SpannersReady or John our PM @JohnMyburgh. As soon as we feel confident we can fill a grid of 26, we will be asking people to phone up Rye House and leave deposits and we will adjust the format to suit the numbers.

We’re not laying on anything formal for the event on this occasion but we will most likely be grabbing a pint around the corner afterwards for which you are most welcome to join us. It’s all about having fun, but it’s more fun if you win. Oh and there will be the inaugural TJ13 Go-Karting Trophy ;)

Kind Regards
Spanners Ready

Voice of the #F1 Fans: Mercedes drivers: How close was it really?

•January 25, 2015 • 63 Comments

 Brought to you by TheJudge13 contributor landroni

Figure 1: Nico and Lewis, in style

 Nico and Lewis, in style

 

As the dust settles down after the end of the 2014 campaign, there is still considerable amount of debate over how closely matched were the Merc drivers after all. With Hamilton’s contract negotiations being handled by zee greitest negozieightorr in zee howl veid vvorrld, Toto Wolff—who just like our dearest Dr Helmut Marko and Niki Lauda—cares deeply about TJ13 readers and simply doesn’t know when to stop talking in front of the press. So we’re in for an entertaining spat starring Lewis and 1/3 of the Three Stooges, Wolff, which now seems to be going full-throttle. But how well did Rosberg actually fare versus Hamilton in 2014, and how entitled is Hamilton to press forward with his salary demands?

At first sight, Rosberg at the very least closely matched Hamilton. For much of 2014 he was leading the WDC, before the tables changed in Singapore, when Rosberg got his second taste of “leprechaun reliability”. He has also done a better job in qualifying, reportedly one of Hamilton’s strongest suits, beating him 11–7 and being faster by 0.187s on average.

Yet as pointed out by one of TJ13 readers, it’s interesting how:

  • Hamilton beat Rosberg 11–5 in terms of wins, more than double and even though Rosberg started ahead of Hamilton more often than not
  • Rosberg was unable to pass Hamilton on-track at any race
  • Hamilton passed Rosberg more often than not, most spectacularly at the start of Abu Dhabi
  • Rosberg couldn’t manage to win 2 races in a row in a supremely dominant car, while Hamilton had two win streaks (4 and 5 straight wins, respectively)
  • and Hamilton finished on the podium every race that his car didn’t grind to a halt, affected by leprechauns (including after spectacular quali incidents like Hamilton flambé in Hungary or invisible brakes in Germany)

And somehow many argue, including your humble writer, that Rosberg has proved in 2014 that he was not too far off from Hamilton!

 

If you sit down with a glass of cold vodka and then take a sober look at the past season, then Rosberg’s performance suddenly seems much less impressive than at first sight.

If you exclude Hungary and Germany 2014, then the head-to-head tally stands at a less impressive 9–7, still advantage Rosberg. If we try to get a measure of their ultimate raw pace, and consider the best sector times throughout the year (set in any session, while still excluding qualifying times in both Hungary and Germany 2014), then Nico and Lewis are incredibly closely matched. From the 57 track sectors, Hamilton was quicker than Rosberg by a mere 29–28, with an average time separating the two drivers an infinitesimal 0.011 seconds. So if we look at both drivers’ theoretical best raw-pace performances while controlling for the Leprechaun effect, Rosberg has only done a wonderful job in matching the qualifying master, but not quite beating him. No mean feat, it must be said.

Switching to race day, Rosberg’s race performance versus Hamilton was ultimately flattered by the fact that the car’s advantage was so great over the competition that both of them were most of the times ahead of everyone else, while the closest challengers (Williams and Red Bull) were merely minor inconveniences on the start-finish straight. If you take this into account, then Rosberg was farther from Hamilton than many think.

That’s why, for instance, F1Metrics have classified Rosberg in 7th this year, his performance being only just in front that of Räikkönen (8th), and statistical miles behind behind the likes of Hamilton (2nd) and Alonso (1st). Put differently, the performance delta between Hamilton and Rosberg in 2014 was statistically not unlike the delta between Alonso and Räikkönen, which few would argue was a close-fought battle. (For more details on the methodology check the mathematical model and this very brief overview.)

When correcting for race-day luck as per our beloved Victims of Circumstance, Hamilton is still in front of Rosberg by a hefty 424–387. Clearly, even when you account for the obligatory race-day Leprechaun effect, Hamilton still emerges as the better racer.

So, if in 2015 Merc loses its crushing edge, then both Hamilton and Rosberg shall find themselves in traffic much more often than 2014, and unless Rosberg finds some grit—as he seemed to be doing in quali towards the end of last year, straining Hamilton’s nerves quite a few times—then these race performance differences will likely only get amplified.

Just like in fashion and entertainment, Hamilton seems to be having just that very little but ultimately tangible performance edge over Rosberg. As for his salary demands, my feeling is that all these outrageously overpaid drivers are plain and simple daylight robbers. But hey, employees like Hamilton clearly have market power, and can force their will onto very powerful corporations. (Funny when roles change, huh?)

And ze Wolff better be careful and brush his medieval history manuals: the last time a team (McLaren) felt Hamilton was replaceable and refused to give him an (“inflation-linked”) raise for excellent performance, they found that all of a sudden their car metamorphosed from fastest horse on the grid to midfield wheelbarrow when lucky, and incidentally, under the Leprechaun’s very own stewardship (Paddy Lowe, the other third of the Three Stooges). And two years on, with the former master’s head on a spike (Martin Whitmarsh), Lewis’ former team realised that they’d willingly give an arm and a leg just to get their former idol back. Bee verry verry keirfull Herr Wolff not to bark up the wrong tree…

Figure 2: The Once and Future Wolff?

 The Once and Future Wolff?

#F1 Daily News and Comment: Saturday 24th January 2015

•January 24, 2015 • 11 Comments

DN&C_header_EXPRESS_4

This page will be updated throughout the day.

Please if you are on Twitter press the tweet button below. If you re-write and tweet individual story headlines don’t forget to include #F1.

You may not realise how hugely important this is and has helped grow our community significantly

Previously on TheJudge13:

#TJ13 #F1 Courtroom Podcast: FIA on Life support!!!

FIA to sue paralysed ex-F1 driver


OTD Lite 2000 – Jenson Button’s debut announced

Renault chases German horsepower

Vettel will be punching table within 4 races – Berger

Chilton to ‘help’ Carlin in Indy Lights

The Usher’s Caption Competition


OTD Lite 2000 – Jenson Button’s debut announced

Back in the late 80’s, when the Jackal was still a tousle-haired young seedling I used to frequent the bars and clubs attempting to emulate the exploits of the future AJH and Hippo!

One evening on my return home, around three in the morning, I switched on the TV whilst eating a greasy kebab and watched some go-karting on the TV. The category was Kadets and was for drivers aged between 8 and 11. Of course names meant little back in 1989 but one stood out over all the others – Jenson Button.

The name was so unusual that I had a premonition that I should visit the bookies and place a bet on him becoming a Grand Prix winner. The fact he was leading was a good sign too.

Fast forward eleven short years and on this day Jenson Button was confirmed as a Williams-BMW driver. Who would have believed that this fresh faced cherub would still be competing so long after and with a WDC to boot!

As to the bet? Well, it was never placed, the inebriated mind conveniently forgetting it by the morning. Only when I saw his name in a Formula Ford round did it strike a nerve….

The Grumpy Jackal.

Top

Renault chases German horsepower

The Head of Renault Sport F1, Cyril Abiteboul, was speaking to Canal+ about the upcoming season and the work the French manufacturer has been conducting ahead of the 2015 season.

“We estimate that at the end of last season we had a 60bhp deficit to the Mercedes engine. The aim is to halve that by the start of the season and unlike Mercedes we will be in Melbourne with our 2015 engine.”

“Of the 32 tokens we have used around 2/3rds so far and the engine is an evolution of last years rather than revolutionary. Despite the layout of the Mercedes engine we have left the turbo and compressor in their original positions as we feel it’s a better solution for us.”

“We now have 24 test benches at Viry which in terms of computing power is equal to the rest of the Renault Group combined. New additions are engineers from Porsche and Ferrari but we could not entice anyone from Mercedes to join us.”

After the problems suffered in winter testing last season, the hope is that engine guru Mario Ilien will be able to develop solutions which provide a step forward. ” Lat season, the main problem we face concerned the internal combustion engine’s heat and the direct injection turbo.”

“As you know, we wanted to work with Ilmor and entrusted the engineers to Ilien in relation to the ICE. This way our ideas and their solutions will eliminate the least effective components.”

Vive le France

Top

Vettel will be punching table within 4 races – Berger

Gerhard Berger had what many would agree was a good F1 career. He was not considered as one of the greats of his era, but he was respected for his speed – not least when he out-qualified Brazilian legend Ayrton Senna on occasion.

His career path from his 1984 F1 debut with ATS through to his final season with Benetton in 1997 included periods at both Mclaren and, perhaps most significantly, Ferrari.

He was not away long from F1 when he returned as BMW’s Competitions Director until 2003 before buying 50% of Toro Rosso with his friend and long time backer Dietrich Mateschitz three years later.

He would run the Italian-Austrian concern until he resigned his position in 2008 but in that time he worked with a young Sebastien Vettel and hence knows the German well. Seb went on to dominate the 2008 Italian Grand Prix and Berger is on record at the time stating he would be World Champion.

Next week Vettel is expected to begin his Ferrari career in earnest as he undertakes the first two days of running in the new challenger form Maranello. But Berger suggests that Seb will be anything but light-hearted once the season begins.

With Marchionne suggesting Ferrari will be competitive for the last 5 or 6 races of the season, Berger paints a very different picture of the man from Heppenheim.

“I know Sebastian and he will be beating his fists on the table after four races because he will not be willing to wait until 2016 to win races.”

It’s well known that Vettel’s hero is Michael Schumacher and it seems that their work methods are surprisingly the same. Schumi also used to voice his displeasure in private with the team but never to the outside world. Seemingly quite a change from an Asturian who tweeted the world about his angst.

Top

Chilton to ‘help’ Carlin in Indy Lights

With the collapse of Marussia and the few remianing seats having been snapped up it seems that the money from Chilton senior will not be furnishing any paddock clubs this year.

Max Chilton hardly set the world alight during his two year F1 career yet managed to set a record for most consecutive finishes for a rookie.

Of course, with the cars being easier to drive these day and reliability so strong – allied to a talent that is a few per cent less than his contemporaries – he was hardly likely to be in huge demand for the 2015 season.

It appears that the pretty one will be heading stateside to assist Carlin – his former team – set up an Indy Lights team this year with an eye on a 2016 IndyCar seat.

“I’m very excited to be assisting Carlin in the USA,” Chilton said. “While I’m still considering my options for 2015, the IndyCar package presents an interesting challenge and by assisting with the development of the Indy Lights team I’m keeping my options open for an IndyCar programme in 2016 based on a strong foundation of knowledge and experience. Hopefully I can also help the guys at Carlin get as much as possible out of their first season in the USA.”

Top

The Usher’s Caption Competition

for an alternative view on F1, follow TJ13’s Usher

tumblr_niix9vpnsr1tqggclo1_540

http://f1-theusher13.tumblr.com/

Top

#F1 Daily News and Comment: Friday 23rd January 2015

•January 23, 2015 • 20 Comments

DN&C_header_EXPRESS_4

This page will be updated throughout the day.

Please if you are on Twitter press the tweet button below. If you re-write and tweet individual story headlines don’t forget to include #F1.

You may not realise how hugely important this is and has helped grow our community significantly

Previously on TheJudge13:

#TJ13 #F1 Courtroom Podcast: FIA on Life support!!!

FIA to sue paralysed ex-F1 driver


OTD Lite 2005 – For the Project Manager – JM

Niki Lauda believes more pressing issues than Hamilton contract

Iceman impervious to pressure

New engines for 2017 edge closer

Junior love for Alonso

Haas F1 up and running

Day 1 Jerez drivers

Streiff Apologises


OTD Lite 2005 – For the Project Manager – JM

For anybody who has had the pleasure of listening to the latest Podcast, you will have John Myburgh stumble over who competed in the 2005 US Grand Prix. Of course, it has nothing to do with on this day in particular but I felt it worthy to clear up any confusion that out trusty South African friend may have caused.

The answer to the three teams that actually competed were of course Ferrari, Jordan and especially for Mr Myburgh, the Minardi team with Christjian Albers and Patrick Friesacher. Of course with all the Michelin runners having withdrawn due to the French tyres being not suitable for purpose, we had both Minardis finishing in the points.

So there we have it sir. Anytime you have a question about an historic article ask the trusty Jackal who will supply the information a darn sight quicker than a Google search.

The Grumpy Jackal.

Top

Niki Lauda believes more pressing issues than Hamilton contract

Triple World Champion Niki Lauda has always been forthright with his opinions and as non executive Chairman of the Mercedes AMG F1 team is certainly not afraid to hit out at rumours which have appeared in the press in recent weeks.

Although the contract talks with Lewis Hamilton continue to be of interest to the international media – Lauda offers that in fact it’s all nonsense. “We always agreed that we would talk when he returns from Colorado to the first test in Jerez. So far, neither I, nor Totto, nor anyone else at Mercedes has spoken to Lewis about contractual details such as money or length of contract. Don’t forget he is still under contract to the end of this year.”

Of more pressing concern to the Brackley concern is the competition. “Whether Lewis is favourite or not, I think he will win. Mercedes has done a great job with the power unit and we are ahead of everybody but they have a real chance of catching us fast. It might take them three years, but we can’t rest on our laurels for three years or two or even one.

“Everyone at Brackley is concerned by us not running any testing outside of Europe. In Spain, the temperatures will be too low in February compared to what we will be running in during the year. We’ll go straight to Melbourne and have to compete in a warmer climate.”

As to the future and the impending changes scheduled for 2017 Lauda is adamant that he wants to see the drivers challenged: “These machines allow any driver from Formula 3 or GP2 to be fast straight away – without taking any risks. We need more powerful cars, which are more difficult to drive and maybe less expensive too. These F1 cars are like driving road cars but in future I want a car that has 1,200hp and wide tyres. Formula 1 has to be faster and more difficult. It should be as it once was.”

Top

Iceman impervious to pressure

Raikkonen-Maranello-2015-206x141After the recent Ferrari factory visits by Sebastian Vettel, Jean-Eric Vergne and Esteban Gutierrez it was the turn of fans favourite, Kimi Raikkonen. He arrived in Maranello yesterday to take part in a series of preparatory activities in preparation for the first test in Jerez in less than two weeks.

The Iceman who is due to be a father soon wanted to spend part of his visit with the engineers in the Gestione Sportiva where the new car is being built in preparation for the Spanish test.

After Sergio Marchionne’s recent outpourings to the Press – it was left to the generally silent power behind the FIAT empire to speak about the need for change within Ferrari. John Elkann: “At Ferrari we are all working. We all know where we start but the important thing is to show that this year there is an improvement. It IS important to improve.”

Following the culling of recent months, the metaphorical blood flow from the Scuderia has been stemmed and the new collective are working hard to implement the changes made under the ruthless eye of Marchionne – the Ferrari President. The aim is to put the poor memories behind them and return to being competitive.

Top

New engines for 2017 edge closer

The Formula One engine manufacturers have met twice this month to discuss the future of the sport’s power units. Bernie Ecclestone is demanding more powerful – over 1000BHP – and louder engines according to AMuS.

Niki Lauda has insisted that this process needs to be done properly and not in half measures, to avoid the mistakes on cost and specification made during the development of the current V6 Turbo Hybrids.

All this means, the new engines will not be seen running in anger before 2017.

The devil – as always – is in the detail of what each manufacturer would like to do.

Unsurprisingly, Ferrari want to see a return to the ‘halcyon days’ and propose V8 engines with twin turbo chargers revving to 17,000 RPM. These power units would ditch the MGU-H and run with a version of the old KERS.

This is almost an identical proposal to the one Christian Horner was making during the autumn of 2014. No doubt the rumours that he is off to join Sebastian Vettel at Ferrari at the end of the year when his current contract expires with Red Bull will gather pace.

Mercedes obviously aren’t playing ball. They are insisting the new hybrid technology must remain and to change course completely on engine design will incur huge costs again. Stuttgart is willing to give up the current fuel flow restrictions and increase the limit of 100kg per race, to facilitate the 1,000 BHP requirement from the current engine design.

Honda too are happy for the engines to change for 2017, but they are putting on the table pioneering developments such as four electric motors in addition to assist drive with each wheel.

There appear broad agreement, the price to customers for the new engines should be restricted to around 10 million euros.

The FIA are not absent from the party as Charlie Whiting has proposed simplifying the design regulations and allowing more freedom and Niki Lauda has called for new thinking so a younger generation will say, “Cool. We’ve never seen that before.

Lauda is on record as stating that F1 cars should be difficult to drive and has been openly critical of the fact that Max Verstappen and his likes are capable of driving in Formula One. Niki suggests the new cars have a high level of grip, which may be aligned with Pirelli’s wish to supply larger and wider tyres to F1.

Lauda wants fans to see the drama when a driver loses the increased grip and the skill required to catch the car from sliding, or presumably crash.

Despite their differences and Ferrari looking to the past rather than the future, it appears there is improving consensus on the need to scrap the current programme of ever increasing engine development restrictions planned up to the year 2020.

Yet the parties are a long way apart and Bernie Ecclestone is threatening to impose his will on the subject.

“Peace for our time” –  Neville Chamberlain 1938

top

Junior love for Alonso

When asked to name the best driver currently on the grid, new boy Max Verstappen had no hesitation and replied “Alonso”. And team mate Carlo Sainz Jnr agreed: “Fernando of course

Both however agree that the likely winner of the 2015 F1 drivers’ championship will be Lewis Hamilton, because he has the best car, according to Spanish publication, AS.

top

Haas F1 up and running

Having denied the rumours he is about to acquire Marussia, Gene Haas Formula One programme is officially up and running.

Haas F1 will be based in America, although it has been reported widely that the team has acquired the base in Banbury of the defunct Marussia team, from where the final preparation of the  cars will be completed.

The American team owner’s plan is to sub-contract out the chassis design and build to Dallara. The Italian chassis manufacturer already designs and builds cars for IndyCar, Indy Lights, GP2, GP3, World Series Renault and ADAC Formel masters.

Italian publication Omnicourse is reporting that Haas has now commissioned the design of a 2016 Formula One car chassis and signed off the work to produce a wind tunnel model.

The world of Formula One watches on as Haas charts a new course which may change the way non-automotive manufacturing teams can compete in Formula One.

The deadline for the following season’s technical and sporting regulations has been moved by the FIA from June to March this year, which is intended to provide new entrants into the sport more certainty as the begin the task of building their car for the following year.

That said, given the recent form of the FIA when it comes to last minute regulation changes and glaring omissions from the rules – such as the absence of engine homologation dates for 2015 – nothing is certain in Formula One, until it actually happens.

top 

Day 1 Jerez drivers

Yesterday we reported that Fernando Alonso would be the first driver to pilot the all new MP4-30 in Jerez. Lewis Hamilton has alternated with Nico Rosberg each year and the German will begin the test on February 1st 2014.

Ferrari have now named Sebastian Vettel as their day one test driver but are being ridiculed by Red Bull for signing John Eric-Vergne as a test driver.

A source from the energy drinks company has stated, Vergne “was our worst simulator driver”. This comment may though be more a reflection of the culture within Red Bull rather than actual fact.

Sauber have announced Marcus Ericcson will drive on day one and four with Nasr doing his duty for the team on day two and three.

top

Streiff Apologises

Having been threatened by the FIA with a law suit for defamation, Philippe Streiff has in the last hour been forced to issue an apology on his Facebook page.

The post explains that Streiff had given an interview to a journalist from a little know TV website.

“I went over the board [berserk] in front of the camera, the interview has lasted (too) long and I understand having uttered serious and defamatory remarks towards Jean TODT, Gérard SAILLANT and the FIA and I sincerely regret them.

“I deny and retract these remarks which are without any basis and I request the media to retract them from their outlet channels.”

“Lastly I ask Jean TODT and Gérard SAILLANT, who know full well my health issues, to excuse me. I regret having expressed thoughts related to them which do not correspond to the high consideration that the two deserve.”It also appears that many media sites have removed Streiff’s original comments from their archives, presumably following contact from the legal representatives of the FIA” (translation from TJ13 contributor Landroni).

Streiff’s comments about Jean Todt and Gerard Sailant misappropriating funds are the ones likely to have incensed the FIA president, which is unfortunate as his observations on the FIA investigation panel into the Bianchi crash have clearly struck a chord with other voices dissatisfied with this enquiry.

top

FIA to sue paralysed ex-F1 driver

•January 22, 2015 • 35 Comments

Apparently – it is the season to get legal it.

FOM has been chasing social media individuals and groups who use F1 or Formula 1/One as part of their twitter handle or web site domain name – and threatening them with legal action unless they desist from using the trademark.

Now the FIA have caught the bug. Having escaped with little or no criticism from the mainstream media for the back of a fag packet’s worth of content they published following FIA’s panel of experts’ investigation into the events surrounding Jules Bianchi’s crash, it appears Monsieur Todt has decided to stir the hornets nest.

Philippe Streiff is an ex-F1 driver who was badly injured during F1 testing in 1989 and is now paralysed. French media reported that Streiff had been critical of the outcome of the panel of expert’s deliberations. He accused the FIA of instigating the enquiry with the primary motive of exonerating itself of any potential liability.

The Frenchman had allegedly told Radio Free: “Shame on Jean Todt, who ordered and organised at the last World Motor Sport Council in Doha, Qatar, the report about the accident of Jules Bianchi.

“It was a document prepared by a group of ten friends, including Professor Gerard Saillant, to clear the errors of the FIA” (GMM News).

Streiff did not pull his punches, and F1i.com documents an interview he gave. He accuses Jean Todt and Gérard Saillant having “a thirst for money and power… and embezzling money from the FIA foundation and the ICM where he is vice-president and Gérard Saillant is the president.”

Phillippe claims the FIA did not have the appropriate insurance to cover Bianchi and calls for Jules’ family to take action against the FIA. Nicolas Todt, Bianchi’s manager, is cited as “a disgrace”.

In response, today the governing body of world motorsport released this statement. “The FIA, its President Jean Todt, as well as Gérard Saillant, President of the FIA Medical Commission, are dismayed to learn of the remarks made about them by Philippe Streiff in his recent comments on the state of Jules Bianchi’s health.”

“These remarks having been published by certain media, the FIA, Jean Todt and Gérard Saillant categorically state that Philippe Streiff’s insulting and defamatory comments are utterly unfounded and demonstrate malicious intent. 

“In view of the seriousness of this deliberate attack on their reputations, they have had to ask their lawyers to lodge a complaint for public defamation and insult so that the circulation of Philippe Streiff’s statements is stopped immediately and sanctioned in an appropriate manner.

“They find it regrettable that this incident only serves to add to the suffering of Jules Bianchi’s family, for whom they would like to reiterate their support.”

This is a remarkable action for the FIA to take, simply because it stirs up the controversy once again. In the time it took to pen this article, a Google search on “Streiff” and “the FIA” has revealed an incremental 68 stories have been published on this matter.

The FIA lawyers may well have advised their client that there are further potential ramifications from them pursuing Streiff. Depending on the jurisdiction where this legal action is enacted, Phillippe Streiff may be able to present a defence similar to ‘fair comment’.

In the USA this common law defence is to protect free speech and any plaintiff seeking to prosecute for defamation, must broadly demonstrate the defendant intended ‘actual malice’.

For this reason, it is no coincidence that the statement of from the FIA accuses Phillippe Streiff of ‘malicious intent’.

Of course, there are variants on this notion of ‘fair comment’ in the differing national jurisdictions; however, should the matter proceed to a court hearing the plaintiff may suffer cross-examination regarding their own contributory actions on which the defendant chose to comment upon.

The FIA could then open themselves up to cross examination lines of enquiry into the independence of their panel of experts selected to investigate the events in Suzuka. The intentions behind the breadth and remit of the investigation would have to be established.

One area the FIA may find to be of concern is that the summary report published by the FIA makes no reference to an examination of how their officers have been enforcing Formula 1 regulations, as mandated by the World Motorsport council and whether this specifically could have had any effect on the events in Suzuka.

It could be suggested that there has been a failure by FIA officials to properly enforce and control the speed of cars under caution conditions when held to the standard of the World Motorsport Council regulations.

There have been many F1 fans of F1 suggesting on social media that double waved yellow flag cautions have not been properly enforced by the Formula 1 race director for quite some time.

The World Motorsport Council regulation calls for drivers under double waved yellow flags to “slow down and be prepared to stop.” Yet even prior to the tragic events in Japan last year, there were occasions when the drivers were clearly ignoring this regulation and were not punished in any way.

At the German GP in 2014, Adrian Sutil’s car was stricken on the pit straight a few hundred yards from the high-speed final turn. Cars travelled through this section at exceptionally high speed whilst marshals struggled to recover Sutil’s Sauber. This all happened while that sector of the circuit was under the caution of double waved yellow flags. No driver was even reprimanded.

Lewis Hamilton commented on this at length following the race. “I was really concerned for the marshals. It was really concerning. When you come round that corner at serious speed and then there are marshals standing not far away from where you’re driving past, for me that’s the closest it’s been for a long, long time.”

Hamilton revealed that he had flashbacks to memories of watching the terrible footage from the 1977 South African GP when Tom Pryce collided with a marshal crossing the track with a fire extinguisher in his hand. Both men were killed in the incident.

“When I used to work at a driving school in Bedford and one day I came in and they had this video playing all the time from a race years and years ago,” Hamilton recounted. “A car stopped on the track, a marshal ran across the track and got hit by a car coming past.

“So that was the first thing I thought about and I couldn’t believe that the Safety Car hadn’t come out.”

The FIA report has been widely interpreted as concluding that the drivers in Japan were travelling too quickly whilst under double waved flags. At that time Adrian Sutil’s car was stranded less than 50 feet from the edge of the circuit and marshals were working in increasingly heavy rain in an attempting to recover the Sauber to a safe position.

The rest is tragic history.

If the FIA summary report following the investigation is to be believed, the control of the speed of the cars by FIA officers was not considered.

The failure to address this particular issue could easily create the impression that the investigation was not properly framed and create questions as to the motivation or reasons for this.

Of course there were others from within the F1 circus who have commented on what happened in Suzuka. Niki Lauda observed, “They could have started [the race] earlier, there is no question about it — in the end that would have been better.”

The final report from the FIA investigation denied the start time of the race had any bearing on the Marussia driver’s accident. Yet the recommendations from the report now mean 5 races will commence earlier than usual in the 2015 season.

The lack of transparency from the FIA over the investigation it conducted, may well lead some to believe that this enquiry had a restricted remit, without the intention to thoroughly examine all the contributory factors.

This view could be formed without ‘malicious intent’.

Were it to be demonstrated during a legal process that the FIA report was incomplete and those investigating the matter were aligned with the FIA from self interest; then Streiff’s observations may well have been ‘fair comment’, whether or not this is the notion of the legal definition.

 
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 14,592 other followers