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Red Bull and Ferrari appear to concede over ‘development test’
It looks as though Red Bull and Ferrari believe the protest game is up and Mercedes and Pirelli will be deemed ‘in the clear’. Both teams have independently clarified their positions on why they protested the Mercedes/Pirelli development test in Barcelona.
Marko says to ServisTV, “Firstly we want to clarify the current situation, whether this is a breach of the rules, if not we’ll all accept it”.
He goes on to demand, “We want the same chance to gain the competitive edge Mercedes has. If it is possible that all teams can test under the same conditions, we also want to have this test. Logistically we can now only get this for Silverstone. In other words we lose two races until we have the same information”
Marko goes on to make the point that because of the speed the FIA operates, this will be difficult to resolve before Canada, but hopes the sport’s governing body can attend to this prior to Silverstone.
Ferrari too are explaining the reason for their protest. Stefano Domenicali says that they protested the test of Pirelli and Mercedes to gain clarity about what is allowed.
Ferrari is of the opinion that any test with a current car is illegal. Should this not be the case then they too now are happy to take part in the tests.
“We just want to know if it’s possible,” Domenicali said. “If it is possible, then we will be the first to raise a hand and make sure that we can do the same. As everyone knows, Ferrari has pressurised greatly for in season track testing. This is the reason why we want to understand this situation, nothing more.
If the decision is to be different from what we believed to be allowed, then we expect an immediate reaction [from the FIA] and request that this [for us] happens as soon as possible. In fact as soon as is technically possible.”
Amusingly, neither Red Bull nor Ferrari have faith in the FIA to be able to consider the matter quickly and properly and deliver a swift verdict without their prompting. Further, instead of arguing how they believe the Mercedes/Pirelli test to be illegal, both statements emphasise the need to ‘get on with it’ so they can now test as quickly as possible.
Ferrari have another possible headache as they well may be concerned that their ‘secret’ test in Bahrain – not reported in the F1 media at he time – may mean they’ve used their 1,000km of ‘development testing’ up.
TJ13’s summary declaration. FIA cockup means Mercedes and Pirelli will face no sanctions. Mercedes have stolen a march on the rest and as far as in season testing goes… here we come.
Let’s remember if F1 was just 18,19,20 races and we had no other soap opera tales to discuss – we’d all need a 2nd sport to follow just to fill in the time 🙂
Hamilton objects to Vettel ‘buses’ comments
Unable to contain himself at the post race press conference, Vettel concluded his comments on the race by saying that he thought he was to go racing but and expected to see, “two silver arrows and there were two buses today going for a cruise”.
Speaking to the Press association Hamilton has hi back at Sebastian, “He has had the fastest car for the last four years, so it’s easy for him to say that. He’s got it easy. We are making our way up, we are learning, growing, improving with a car that has great potential, so I don’t agree with him.”
Lewis refused to comment on the ‘secret’ test.
Old F1 drivers show their age
David Coulthard applauds championship contenders playing the percentages, not going for race wins, whilst criticising other drivers for taking advantage of their lethargy.
Writing for the BBC Coulthard states, “I said in commentary that it was rubbish, and I stand by that”, adding, “when you have drivers clearly racing way below the pace they are capable of, that’s not right”.
Speaking about Sergio Perez’s drive David remarks, “He was like the man at the Casino – winning, winning, winning, thinking he was invincible, and then it all goes wrong”.
David then makes a strange comment, “He [Perez] wants to show he is a racer but he was taking on those who know they need points at every race to stay in the battle for the championship, so in many ways it wasn’t a fair fight”.
I think someone needs to sit David down and show him the inconsistency of the DC philosophy on racing. On the one hand he is demanding F1 be an all out pace race – and in the next breath excuses certain driver’s for being overly cautious because they are fighting for the championship.
Is Coulthard is suffering from grandpa issues? ‘Those bloody kids today, they’ve no respect for their elders…’. Then again maybe if Coulthard had been a little less deferential when he was a driver he may have won more in his career.
Evidence dismissed – as tripe! (or trite even – one’s more tasty)
Thailand engaging with the real issues of hosting an F1 race
The Nation, a Thai English publication, is reporting the ‘Pollution Control Department’ director-general Wichien Jungrungruang is giving F1 the all clear to race in Bangkok. Wichien says, “Will the noise be annoying? It will be loud for the people nearby but it won’t heavily affect the people outside the routes and far from the racing field. It is just a short period and short route.
People next to the track would need ear protection, while 100 metres away the noise level would fall to around 105-110 decibels.
The standard level for workplace noise should not exceed 105 decibels for more than one hour. But race fans would be exposed to bursts of high noise for much shorter periods.
On a cautionary note and with a view to proper due diligence, Tanet Visetsri, secretary of the Engineering Institute of Thailand, said more study and inspection was needed to estimate the race’s impact on structures.
The proposed 5.995-kilometre circuit would start at the Royal Thai Navy Dockyard at Ratchaworadit Pier and pass such landmarks as the Grand Palace, the Royal Plaza, Democracy Monument and the Temple of Dawn.
Ferrari accept Massa crash responsibility
Maranello have issued a statement accepting that it was suspension failure which caused Felipe Massa’s big shunt during the Monaco GP.
‘The findings validated the first impressions of the engineers, confirming that the accident was caused by an element of the front left suspension breaking,’ the statement read. ‘With all the required inspections completed to analyse what happened at the Monegasque circuit, the Car Assembly department can now start work in preparing the car for the Canadian Grand Prix.
The cars will be flown off to Montreal this weekend for the much awaited race at the Gilles Villeneuve circuit, which looks like being a very important one in terms of the Scuderia’s championship aspirations.”
It begs the question, what happened in FP3 with the second Ferrari? The footage appeared to show an unusually extended locking of the brakes yet at the time Ferrari said the car was fine.
Maybe the team from Maranello had more problems than they are letting on during the Monaco weekend as Alonso was unusually slow of the line and pedestrian during the race. Debris in the front wing? Who knows.
Comment of the month
If you missed it go back and check the comments section from yesterday in the FIA headless chickens article. Mattpt55 delivers a satirical story which is something quite special and well worth the read. To help you find it amongst the 50 other comments – it begins ‘HaHa….’
When questioned about the ‘secret’ Mercedes test in which he drove, Lewis was politically precise and responded, “We were required to do some work, we did some work, it was good fun. Right now I’m not concerned about it, that’s for the team to worry about. I just have to focus on myself and try and get my act together.”
No bitching about team mate favouritism, team orders, dodgy tyres, Newey designed supercars, Ferrari money, debris in the front wing et al – just some well digested humble pie and someone taking personal responsibility for a change.
My driver quote of the weekend.
I’m not so sure about this. From what I hear Sergio would be favourite in a face off under ‘Queensbury rules’.
Carlos Gosn says, “We are not going to drop the price for anybody for 2014. But our commitment is every year we will be working hard to make this engine more efficient, to reduce the costs and then try to pass part of the cost reduction to the users.”
Gosn suggests they do not need more than three customers, yet Alain Prost told reporters in Monaco that Renault had spent 150m euro on developing the engines. Surely a fourth customer would be welcome.
Carlos continues, “There is some concern about the cost of the engine, I understand it, but our commitment is to work to reduce these costs.”
What has been crazy is the free rein the FIA gave to the engineers and technical boffins when developing the new engines. To ensure the cost was kept reasonable, a cap should have been set on total R&D spend and another on the price the engine producers can charge.
Both in tandem would have limited the blank cheque books that have been opened for this project.
The other side of the argument see’s the fact these engines will be in circulation for 10 years, and as such spreading the cost of the R&D over the term at 15m euro p.a. is not outrageous.