Daily #F1 News and Comment: Tuesday 1st October 2013

This page will be updated throughout the day.

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Pastor not looking so safe (07:30)

Gutierrez has more to offer (07:30)

Ferrari back Massa (07:30)

Da Costa to be confirmed (07:30)

Red Bull scrutiny increases (10:23)

The Hulk of the Hulk (11:36) updated with Webber quote (18:37)

Did Kimi move for money? (12:18)

Ferrari lacklustre (16:31)

Caterham – Alpine Collaboration (16:35)

Hamilton jumping on the band-waggon (16:39)

TJ13 Comment of the month (17:42)

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Pastor not looking so safe

As the news circulates today about the Venezuela government going into turmoil, one has to wonder how long Pastor will be sitting pretty in his race seat at Williams GP. Given the inflation rates rising rapidly, political support is wavy and shortages are present all across the country can the national oil company really justify paying the $46 million to get him in a race seat; especially given the woeful results this year.

Given just 1 point this year, the money paid is hardly a worthwhile investment at a time when propaganda within Venezuela is being used constantly. Nicolás Maduro has only been in power for 5 months but already been challenged in his position routinely.

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Gutierrez has more to offer

After reaching Q3 for the first time in his career, Esteban Gutierrez feels he can build on this and go on for future success this season. Another driver who must be feeling very much under pressure given the arrival of a certain Russian teenager next year. With Carlos Slim’s telecoms money being directed to McLaren instead, Gutierrez is not all that safe in his seat following being outperformed by his team mate this year.

“It was a very powerful feeling, because you can use it for the future,” said the 22 year old Mexican. The Sauber cars had not been expected to be competitive at the Singapore GP, but were pleasantly surprised with the pace they had in hand on Saturday and Sunday.

What do the members of the jury think? Would you retain Esteban Gutierrez even if his sponsorship money is cut? He has shown much potential recently, but has also been thoroughly beaten by his teammate over the year. A former GP3 Champion surely deserves more time…

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Ferrari back Massa

Even after his very public rebellion against the team before the Singapore GP, saying he would not help the Alonso in his title bid, Ferrari have still backed the soon to be team-less Brazilian. Ferrari deputy chief designer Simone Resta expressed how he felt Massa would be an asset to any F1 team.

He stated, “He is quite an experienced guy. He has been driving at a high level for us since 2007 so has a lot of experience.” Clearly believing the 11 times he has won a grand prix could be of use to someone.

He went on to iterate ,”Felipe has been a great team player.” Being a team player is great but it doesn’t get you in any kind of record books. I wonder if Felipe will look back on his career with any kind of regret?

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Da Costa to be confirmed

Livio Oricchio has claimed that Toro Rosso are set to confirm Antonia Felix Da Costa for a race seat in 2014, following the vacancy after Ricciardo’s promotion to the senior team. Da costa, who drives for Arden Caterham team, refused to confirm it when questioned but the deal is believed to be all but officially announced.

The 22 year old Portuguese driver said, “I think Marko will be very happy for me to drive in F1. But the contract we signed last year says that he can put me wherever he wants.”

Da Costa is currently behind Magnussen and Vandoorne in the standing, with Magnussen looking likely to take the 2013 title. The Dane, who is a part McLaren young driver program, must be wondering how close he is to a race seat, given the Woking based team still haven’t confirmed their drivers for 2014.

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Red Bull scrutiny increases

Yesterday, Giancarlo Minardi questioned the legality of Vettel’s Red Bull. He suggested that Vettel’s Renault engine “sounded similar to past seasons when traction control went into action”. TJ13 does not subscribe to this assessment as the ECU management system should prevent this from occurring.

Today, Autospirint have published a video (I can’t get it at present) which demonstrates the difference in sound mid-corner between Vettel’s engine note and the other cars. Unlike traction control where the note of the engine is at the upper range of the power, this noise is more transient and is clearly a development in the cars ability to blow exhaust gases effectively into the diffuser.

It is rare in modern F1 to see a car over 2 seconds a lap quicker than the field, and so of course this has raised questions over where Red Bull have suddenly discovered this pace.

In Hungary, Mercedes were the quickest car where like Singapore there were a number of sub 130 kph corners. 4 races later, Mercedes have been blown away.

Discussing this giant leap forward, James Allen observes, The key to this is that Red Bull has done a lot of work on traction out of low speed corners. On average, across all the tracks in the F1 championship, 25% of the lap time is spent below 130km/h on corner exits. It is the most significant single area to focus on. So if you can make a significant gain in that area, you can get effectively a 25% improvement, which will show in your lap time”.

Mark Gillan also suggests that Milton Keyenes have done a huge amount of work on high speed yaw – the amount of lean of the car in the corner. This provides the car with not just high downforce, but mid-corner stability. Gillan suggests this has been delivered from aerodynamic work in the wind tunnel.

On this point, I’m not so sure Gillan has the full story. TJ13 has suggested for sometime that the suspension system Newey was developing and first tested in Austin 2012, allows the car an element of active ride due to a heat induced flexibility in certain components fundamental to the rigidity of the suspension.

Of course Pirelli have played their part as Red Bull have now won 3 of the 4 races since the change of 2013 tyre specification.

Red Bull have mastered the lower speed corners package, whilst developing a low downforce package for Spa and Monza that was almost as dominant. The championships are over, and the arguments are now between Ferrari Mercedes and Possibly Lotus.

Roll on 2014 – diffuser blowing will be finished.

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The Hulk of the Hulk

There are times where I find myself debating the age old philosophical matter of, ‘how many angels can dance on the head of a pin’. This is usually a counter productive exercise into the unknown and Mark Hughes of SKY puts me here once again.

Apparently, the logical conclusion from his piece, “What now for Nico Hulkenberg?” is that all new F1 drivers will be of a horse jocky-esque kind of statue. Hughes argues, “Although the minimum weight of the 2014 cars has been increased, the early indications are that the extra weight of the turbo and ERS systems and associated cooling is going to more than account for the extra 43kg allowed by the regulations.

Because the total weight includes the driver, in theory he should not be disadvantaged by his weight, but if the driver/car combined weight is under the minimum, then the car can be brought up to the limit with ballast – and this gives the advantage of allowing that weight to be placed where it is most advantageous to the car’s centre of gravity and front/rear weight distribution.

This can be varied from track to track, giving extra flexibility to the car’s set up. But if the driver’s weight is such that combined with that of the car, less (or no) ballast can be used, then it’s an obvious disadvantage. The current generation of cars can generally be built light enough that even the heavier drivers can use ballast, but that may not be the case next year”.

Apparently lack of cash and being big boned means Nico appears doomed for 2014.

No more will we see the lion heart of a determined British bulldog like Mansell hauling his burger bun shaped frame around in an F1 car. Neither will a Mark Webber be able to compete so closely with a younger lighter driver who is the master of counter intuitive, blown diffuser driving styles.

Hughes tweeted, “Minimum weight of car/driver needs to be increased further in order to stop gifted drivers being weighed out of F1”, Webber replied, “Tell me about it. Haven’t eaten for last 5 years!. Min weight been to low since for ages. Perfect driver now weight 60/65kg”.

Clearly the future of F1 is in the Aldous Huxley style of brave new world where we breed in test tubes, “Alpha’s”, who are genetically engineered to become F1 drivers and will only grow to a height of less than 5 foot 2 and have no neck to speak of.

Then again, maybe Roger Hargreaves has the answer.

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Did Kimi move for money?

There have been various opinions on this matter and indeed Kimi himself appeared to infer it was a factor in his decision to leave Lotus.

When Kimi signed his first contract with Ferrari, this agreement entered the history books as one of the most expensive sports deals in history, across all sports.

Kimi was signed to the Enstone team on a €3m a year salary and he was offered a bonus of  €50.000 per point. Lotus clearly underestimated the success of the combination of their car and the Finnish world champion.

So far in 2013, Kimi has scored 149 points , which is a bonus of  €7,450,000. In 2012 Kimi scored 207 points which would have cost the team €10,350,000 in addition to his 3€ million a year salary. Lotus will probably end up paying Kimi for his two years endeavours around €24 million.

Boullier and Lopez have both admitted that they owe Kimi a lot of money, but because the bonus is based on a points system, they say they intended to pay this at the end of the year. The telegraph suggests Raikkonen’s management is about to issue legal proceedings for the payment of €12.5m

When Kimi signed for Ferrari in 2007, the deal entered the history books as one of the most expensive sports contracts with a participant ever.

Today, nearly 7 years later, TJ13 believes that Ferrari have offered Kimi a deal valued in total at $153 million (€113m) over 3 years (2+1). This would be the 5th most lucrative contract awarded to a sports person in history.  Only Alex Rodriguez (twice, once with the Yankees and once with the Rangers), Floyd Mayweather and Albert Pujols have been awarded deals reputed to be bigger in financial terms than this.

Messi and Ronaldo now earn less than Kimi, and of course notably his team mate – Fernando Alonso.

The fine print of the Ferrari deal is still leaking it’s way out, but if it was ‘all about the money’ for Kimi then notably Red Bull’s puny €15m offer was trumped by a margin greater than Vettel could dream of pulling out on the rest of the field.

No wonder Vettel wants to drive for Ferrari in 2015, which may be the beginning of the end for the F1 newbie dream team, because Newey also wants out to fulfil a life long ambition and design a British winning America’s Cup entry.

Yet following the announcement that Raikkonen’s had signed for Ferrari something strange was noticed in Finland.

Kaskisaari is an island in an archipelago about 300 mtrs. offshore from Helsinki. It is connected by just 2 roads, the Kasakisaarentie and the Kaskaiuranpolku, while the latter is no more than a ring shaped driveway, the first is a artery which divides the island into two halves.

Until 30 years ago the two halves were owned by two families, that of the rich pharmacist Idman and that of the famous business man, landowner and big game hunter Schuster.

Today, Kaskiaari represents the pinnacle of Finnish real estate. The 30 houses built on the island are all surrounded by tall fences, have impeccable gardens and cost a fortune. Helsinki, just 20 miles away, is now the ninth most expensive city in Europe. This is the Bel Air neighbourhood of Finland where the owners are afforded great privacy which is 24/7 and managed via thousands of electronic eyes and sensors.

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It is here where Kimi resides from time to time. He has, 526 square meters, facing the ocean. 8 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, a marina and a teak wood terrace on the fjord make this the most expensive house in Finland at €17.8 million.

In the garage, which is itself the size of a large house, there is a Ferrari Enzo, a BMW M3, two Mercedes’ and a Fiat 500. (RTR Sports)

Mysteriously, the house has been placed on the market for sale….. 

Did Kimi move for money – YOU BET! And it appears Il Padrino has once again slapped Alonso in the face with a wet fish ready for cooking on the BBQ to be held for Kimi’s ‘welcome home’ celebration..

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Ferrari lacklustre

Today, Ferrari publish their usual pre-race weekend preview, and unlike earlier in the season it all sounds a bit down beat and lacklustre.

Scuderia Ferrari Engineering Director Pat Fry muses, “We’ve still got some developments coming through for the next few races and we will be running and testing them to continue to try and improve the car,” says Fry. “For 2014, because of the much larger changes to the cars on the engine side and also the aero aspect, it’s naturally much harder to test components now, but there will be some small development bits we can run during this year’s remaining free practice, looking more on the reliability front than anything else, which means we have busy Fridays planned for the next six races.”

An equally sanguine Nikolas Tombazis, Scuderia’s Chief Designer, states the teams bold objectives to be, “our efforts will be partly aimed at continuing to understand better the tyres and tyre management, which might see some improvement compared to our competitors,And we are bringing small aero updates. One should not expect these to dramatically affect the final result but we feel they will bring some improvement.”

The article drowns on and on, not blaming – but blaming the tyres and other uneventuful stuff. So I won’t bore you with any more of it.

Bla, bla, bla. Where’s the Italian passion??? The fighting talk with Red Bull??? Challenge the Newey design guys. Red Bull must be cheating the whipping they’re handing out to the Prancing Horse brigade at present……..

You can’t see Alonso working himself up into an apoplectic fit of rage over failing to meet these bold expectations.

I think a good dose of the following is required [currently being translated into Finnish].

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Caterham – Alpine Collaboration

The final designs of the new Caterham and Alpine 
co-developed sports car have now been agreed and signed off ahead of the launch in 2016.

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The new car, referred to by Caterham as the C120, is the result of the joint-venture agreement signed between Caterham and Renault late last year. It is a two-seat sports car that will give both companies a stand-alone model, as well as relaunching the Alpine brand.

But the Caterham will not just be a rebadged Alpine. Both will have different bodies and interiors and will owe very little to each other visually. Renault design chief Laurens van den Acker said the two cars will give “completely different impressions” that will showcase “the best of the two companies”.

Engine tuning, handling characteristics and steering traits will also be different, with Caterham developing its own settings. And although both cars will have the same power and torque outputs, Caterham intends to launch new versions with different outputs after the first model.

That power output is likely to be about 250bhp, although Caterham sources indicate that the firm is keen to raise that figure to 300bhp. The engine, a Renault-supplied unit, will be new and is not yet in production. With a target kerb weight of 1100kg, thanks to an aluminium body, the car is likely to benefit from a power-to-weight ratio of about 270bhp per tonne.

With a target of 3000 cars a year, Caterham will be increasing sales by more than 500 per cent, so the firm is currently looking at expanding its dealer network to accommodate the new car. Both the Alpine and Caterham will be built at Renault’s Dieppe factory, which is now 50/50 owned by Caterham and Renault.

With Renault now working on the Alpine, van den Acker said he’d shelved his ambitions to launch an additional Renault sports car closely linked to his DeZir concept of 2010. “Since Alpine became serious, we can’t do both,” he said. “Even I’d admit that’s not necessary. I gladly defer DeZir in order 
to do an Alpine.” (Autocar)

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Hamilton jumping on the band-waggon

We see the return of the infamous H.A.M. abbreviation. For those of you who don’t remember, Lewis emblazoned this on his helmet – allegedly inferring, “Hard [as] A Mother-F….r”.

Here it would not be unfair for LotusF1 to claim original thought, with their tweet the morning Ferrari announced Kimi was joining them.

Which of the two tweets has the biggest mammals – I’m not sure

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TJ13 Comment of the month

On the day TJ13 first passed 100 comments on a single post (Monday 9th Sept), which was the day before Ferrari announced Kimi, the English media went berserk reporting the Vettel booing Monza the day before. We did a roundup of these publications views in the news, with some comment,

First to post a comment on this auspicious day was Elf who said, “I am so used to your bias towards Alonso tj13. What a pity! Get a life, great content I’ll agree but your opinions clearly come from site managers with the IQ of a banana eating ape”.

The comment with the most votes in September (19) was in reply to this from Auq. He said, “The discussions on this site usually shine by being devoid of comments of that level. This is completely out of place and you should be embarrassed”.

A fairly new reader (well certainly commentator) Graham Harris added, “Guess I must love bananas, anything that takes the spotlight off the little finger wagging Goldie Locks wannabe must be applauded! Keep it up Judge, we really do like it”.

My take on matters was, “F1 is the biggest and best global soap opera, and should be treated as such. Fabulous and Farcical in equal measures”, though admittedly this in good old Eurovision fashion got ‘nil points’.

The comment was most popular relating to something other than the TJ13 quality of content and debate was from Richard. His take on the story that Vettel failed to attend Webber’s big European farewell party in Monza was as follows.

“It shouldn’t matter what Vettel thought or felt, his people should have told him to show his face, smile, shake hands, work the room, press some flesh and leave discreetly after 20 minutes.

Here he looks like a moody teenager”.

One of my favourites for sheer passion and which conveys exactly what the auythor intended was,

“WE WANT FRIJNS !
WE WANT FRIJNS !
WEEE WAAAANT FRIIJJJJJJNNNSSSSS!” – from ViezeFrans

Already this week we have a strong contender for COM – October – Danilo again. Referring to the CCTV footage of Webber hitching a life he sagely suggests, “Watch the video, both got almost piled into by the Mercs. Alonso should have stopped in the run-off area”.

Use the thumbs up icon next to a comment to vote for it whether because it is pithy, witty, soundly factual or in general for any kind of comment you feel deserves recognition. You can of course vote each day and more than once.

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58 responses to “Daily #F1 News and Comment: Tuesday 1st October 2013

  1. DaCosta knows the drill: show Marko your obedience and the road ahead will be filled with flowers.

    • At least until Sainz Jr and Kvyat are ready to step up to Toro Rosso…. But still Felix da Costa has at least gotten two years to impress the F1 world

  2. How many times have we heard that the lack of testing and general track time is forcing young talent out of F1 before they should realistically be being judged? Gutierrez is now a bit more acclimatised and is going up against a man everyone rates amongst the best in his teammate. I would give him more time, at least until the end of the season before deciding if he is worthy of the drive. Having said that, if I was Sauber, I would take as much money from a pay driver as I could as it seems with more investment in developing the already quite handy car, they could be even further up the grid.

    • I continue to feel the real problem some of these younger guys suffer is simply being brought in too soon – it isn’t fair on them and to then have to ‘give them more time’ to get acclimatised is absurd…
      Equally, by trying to bring in more youngsters (and soon young women as well, I hope) all that does is to force slightly older drivers (Hulk, for example) out…
      I keep saying it, and so far nobody has argued the opposite, but posts here continually, and alternately, either decry the ousting of existing drivers (‘give them more time’) or desperation to bring in new guys…
      With a fixed number of seats you simply can’t have both…
      In the first 60 years of F1 I cannot recall a single season when newer drivers were allowed time to get the hang of it. Frequently, either they performed well within a few races or they were out before the end of the season.
      I say, give the youngsters time to develop before bringing them into F1 too soon.
      That’s all. Sorry to be boring.

      • Hey BJF,
        Just to add one thing to your argument, pre 2009, F1 testing was unlimited, so many drivers spent days testing for their respective teams.
        The first proper test driver I remember was Johnny Dumfries in 1985 testing for Ferrari and after that obviously demands expanded. Damon Hill worked with Mansell at Williams and became the race driver in 1993, DC same in 1994.
        And if you fast forward to 2007, Hamilton drove 1000’s of miles on a track before his first GP start.

        I agree in the past drivers weren’t given a couple of seasons to get used to the car, but they had plenty of testing between Grand Prixs

        I’m sorry but no matter how good these simulators become, they will never replace track time.
        I tried the Ferrari one back in April and it left me wanting to vomit. Okay maybe you get used to that but I can completely understand why Kimi hates them.

        • Hi Carlo – thanks for that. Testing certainly made a big difference, although I’m not sure it’s the major problem – and what happened before 1985…? And I imagine you’re right about the limitations of simulators over track-time.

          “… same in 1994. And if you fast forward to 2007…”
          With pleasure – it was my least favourite period of history… 🙂

          • It just occurs to me whether test/reserve drivers ever race anywhere else these days… So a guy could presumably go from GP2 champion, to test-driver for a couple of years, and then, on finally getting an F1 seat, he has ‘forgotten’ everything he previously knew…
            Which would again suggest they are being brought into F1 too soon…

        • Hi Carlo – hope you’re well.
          Thanks for the response. I agree the previous testing opportunities helped enormously but… I just don’t feel this is the major difference. And I agree simulators will never replace track-time.
          Maybe the principle of bringing on new/young drivers in that way has been superseded by the current limited testing and needs to be reviewed.
          It seems drivers are now snatched from the mouth of ‘feeder series’ and used as test/reserve drivers where they can vegetate for a couple of years before getting a F1 seat, by which time they are perhaps rusty. How many of these guys who are ‘in’ F1, but without an F1 drive, still compete REGULARLY in other events…
          Before 1980 F1 drivers themselves frequently raced in other events or F1 support races… so I still feel ‘we’/’they’ are being unfair to these younger chaps, who might have spent more time in karts than in real cars, and expecting too much from them.

          “…same in 1994. And if you fast forward to 2007…”
          With pleasure – that was my least favourite period of history. 😉

          • Sorry for the repetition folks – the previous two comments didn’t show up as having been posted, after waiting for an hour, so I did it again.
            That old ether… 😉

  3. Bring in Vandoorne, the boy has real talent, Magnussen is good, but I don’t think he’ll set the world alight. With Alonso, Hamilton and Vettel not getting any younger, we need guys like Vandoorne and Frijns in F1.

    • Frijns would be in F1 today, and certainly next year, if he didn’t bite the hand that fed him. Frijns outcomes are on his own back.

      • I’ve heard Frijns believed he was to get Ferrari support – and so took the risk of dissin RB… twice rejecting their advances.

        • Hi judge

          What’s is happening to frijins these days, are we ever likely to see him in a f1 car?

          Just from what I can make out he appears to be something a bit special.

          I think one of the problems we have, teams that once took a chance on youngsters with promise no longer exist or can no longer afford to. At least with in season testing, it gave teams a chance to test drivers.

          F1 is looking more and more self destructive these days

          • The rejection of Frijns from RB offers is an old story. Last year he had already rejected them, twice. And good on him!

            Latest news about Frijns is, that he got rid of his manager, (yesterday) in order to get a better one, or at least get a step forward into F1 done.

            Hopefully there’s a team out there, who’m don’t need the sponsor moneys to bad, but need a talented superfast racer. There’s nothing out there in his range of talent nowadays.

            I predict he will be the one in the near future to bring the Red Bull dominance to a halt. MARK THESE WORDS. (And you heard it here 1st! 🙂 )

        • Typo. You mean twice rejecting their advances, not there advances. Your Honour has to be careful with spelling to earn respect as a Judge.

        • Ferrari support sounds good but how would he fit into their plans? They have Bianchi, who they have just about gotten into F1 (and it seems not into a midfield drive just yet), along with Marciello in the junior team (could be their next Italian superstar). They have enough on their plate with these two already, and if a place became available soon at Ferrari you would think that either Vettel or Hulkenberg would be the ones in demand, along with Bianchi moving up to the midfield sometime before possibly taking on a number 2 role at Ferrari to whoever is the number one driver (Vettel-Bianchi? Hulkenberg-Bianchi?).

          If Ferrari were firing on all cylinders, they would have gotten Bianchi in at Sauber (waiving 9m owed for engines), to go up against Gutierrez (who was always going to be stronger in his second season – look at his driving record). Gutierrez coming up to speed would be a good challenge for Bianchi to press on from his immediate pace (else he could become the next Jarno Trulli), which he has always showed. Now to get to/stay at the next level.

          Frijns should have gone with Red Bull really; as a German-speaking driver with a German-speaking organisation, there would be a guaranteed 2 years in F1 for him, maybe in da Costa’s place, and with his speed always apparent he would probably have impressed in a similar manner to Ricciardo. Now, as it is, he changed manager (as was speculated he should do) and looks to challenge for the GP2 title next year, before hoping someone gives him an F1 offer for 2015. This relies somewhat heavily on the Concorde Agreement giving the teams better finances, else we will still have drivers bringing huge sponsorship budgets to teams, and perhaps Magnussen, Vandoorne, Frijns etc. still on the outside looking in.

          • Other than that, your analysis is very sound indeed. It remains a sad state of affairs that the influx of new, talented drivers is so limited. Would additional teams help? I doubt anyone would be up for the investment these days, but none the less…

          • True – I always think of them as mutually intelligible but they are separate languages! While RB used to show a backing for Austrian drivers, now it’s not really patriotic at all but more meritocratic. I thought maybe he kinda filled both of those roles (loosely for the former!).

          • I don’t rate Bianchi particularly. Since he won in F3 with ART, a team owned by his manager Nicholas Todt, he has failed to turn subsequent seasons into titles.

            It fascinates me with the Todt connection. Obviously Todt is the son of former Ferrari F1 boss jean Todt, and he manages Massa who has recently lost his seat to Kimi.

            Is the relationship between Todt and Ferrari as cold as it was when he left in 2008 or have bridges been mended?

  4. EH???
    Alonso and Hamilton earn around 20 million a year and Kimi will be earning double that every single year? Are you serious? Based on what? Why would they want to pay him that much money?…then again Real paid 85 for Bale and Arsenal 50 for Ozil…go figure!

    • Alonso is about 30m all in… This will include sponsorship arrangements and some kind of performance element.

      As I said the finer points are still unclear.

      • If Ferrari are paying Kimi that much it makes you wonder do they have a lot of faith in Alonso staying much longer or even want him.

        • Ferrari do seem a little bit desperate for success. I’d guess they want to beat Merc in the next couple of years so that they can entice Vettel to the team instead of losing him to Merc. And they can’t rely on Lewis maybe moving to them if Vettel goes to Merc, because he may well move back to Macca if Honda deliver the goods.

          • Agreed, Hamilton will be back with McLaren in 2016 if no WDC with Merc by then, even if he does get it I’d say there is high possibility its reunion. Especially after the mutual lovin’ between Ron and Lewis in the press this summer. I believe Ron said “lewis knows he will always be part of the McLaren family and had planted deep roots within the organisation” or something close to that. Considering Senna is Hamilton’s hero he is never gonna pass on driving a McLaren Honda turbo F1 car. On a personal note, I so hope they go back to the white and orange livery as I think the silver was to do with Mercedes (not 100% on that).
            I think it would be cool to see that yellow helmet in a white and orange McLaren. I do hope it happens.

          • In F1 anything is possible. Back in June, a return to Ferrari for Kimi would have seemed…well…. an event as rare as a Richter scale 9 earthquake 🙂

  5. From – Red Bull scrutiny increases

    ” …. ( RB ) have done a huge amount of work on high speed yaw – the amount of lean of the car in the corner. ”

    Yaw is NOT the amount of lean of a car – that is ROLL.

    So could you please clarify ?

    Cheers 🙂

  6. I recall commenting (albeit to myself, admittedly) earlier in the year about how much (crap that is) the RB7 sounded like in its EBD heyday….. that bloody Newey!!!

  7. “Mysteriously, the house has been placed on the market for sale….. ”

    First off, Raikkonen doesn’t reside in Finland but in Switzerland. Second, the house that you are referring to has been on and off the market two or three times since he bought it. Third, the house is listed at €14.5M not €17.8M. Fourth, Raikkonen owns two other houses in Finland

    That took me all of 5 minutes of searching on the internet.

    • …plus it’s not 20 miles away from Helsinki, more like 4 miles as the crow flies. Anyway, it’s not like he’s selling it for being short on cash…

  8. “Today, nearly 7 years later, TJ13 believes that Ferrari have offered Kimi a deal valued in total at $153 million (€113m) over 3 years (2+1).”

    Which I don’t believe as previously the bulk of his salary with Ferrari was paid by Philip Morris, which is no longer the case.

      • No, but paying 50 odd million annually to a driver that is considered in the top 4 but not the number 1 seems preposterous. Is a lot of this performance related? Ferrari knows Kimi lost motivation for a number of reasons before, so I would assume that the best way to incentivise him is money. Or is this a longer game plan in that Vettel will be coming in and Kimi is being paid to get him back and then work with Seb?
        Crazy money and with people being laid off in Italy within FIAT, I cannot believe this is sending out the right message

      • Ferrari sponsors may choose to have their cash specifically designated, however the team negotiates the driver contracts as they seem fit.

  9. Räikkönen’s house on Kaskisaari island has been on the market since december 2008.

    http://static.iltalehti.fi/asuminen/kiminkotietu2405MH_503_an.jpg
    (pictures and blueprints)

    He bought it for 9 mil €, started to sell it for 14,5 mill, and has not yet sold it. Where 17.8 mill came up is quite unclear, since you cannot find anything on that kind of asking price in the Finnish media.

    The small island Kaskisaari is situated in a bay, more like a lake, and the open sea of the Gulf of Finland is miles away. Oceans are about a thousand miles away. There is not a fjord (narrow bay with mountains on both sides) within about a thousand miles.

    Even though the houses on the island have high fences, a public walk way and bridge connets the island to nearby bigger island Lauttasaari. The public road (and walk way) and bridge connects the island to another island, named Lehtisaari. You are thus able to walk right up to these expensive houses and have a look around.

  10. Just saw the vid. There is definitely a brrrraaap sound when SV hits the throttle. So when does SV get disqualified ? LOL! Maybe RB will just get a fine like they always do when they are caught cheating.

    • Now where are all the impertinent folk who suggested Minardi was a deaf old idiot…!?

  11. RE. “Today, Autospirint have published a video (I can’t get it at present) which demonstrates the difference in sound mid-corner between Vettel’s engine note and the other cars.”

    The video is here

    • Sounds obvious there is something subtle there to me. At least next year we won’t have this, even if we still have the same aero and no GE.

  12. re. Lewis Hamilton twitter pic and use of “H.A.M” in his latest tweet.

    He has that at the top of his twitter account tagline:

    Lewis Hamilton Verified account @LewisHamilton
    “Inspired to be the greatest In all I do. Formula 1 driver, Artist, singer/songwriter/musician, H.A.M till the day I die. God comes 1st…
    All around the World!! ·”

    • Thanks PK. Not noticed that before.

      Interesting mix of themes from Lewis… the eternal deity…. and an incestuous son….Mmm

      Also wouldn’t substituting ‘greatest’ for ‘best I can’ sound a little less unrealistic and/or arrogant?

  13. TJ, please let me correct the bit in your comment of the month!! I did not throw the insult at you, but was the one correcting it! (not Danilo)

    • Just to add: it was “elf” who posted the insult.

      I feel bad having my name next to something I didn’t say – I hope you’ll see this comment soon :(.

      • …and since it’s the end of the day, this comment will likely not be noticed for a while, while the original mistake has been read over and over now. This leaves a dilemma.

        It’s a mere shadow of the witch hunting of old, but still – would I dare return to this place, its population now erroneously mistaking me for the banana-obsessed entity who spoke so badly in this court. Or instead, could I seek refuge in hiding, knowing that the gauntlet of justice will soon be swung at those who deserve it.

        Only time will tell… I’ll have a cup of tea in the meanwhile (no, not a banana).

    • Don’t worry Auq, got your back 🙂 Hopefully not too much damage done. TJ is getting a new pair of glasses 😛

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