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TJ13 expands in 2014 (01:30)
A lot of head scratching at Mercedes
Those, who have paid attention to the sparse news coming from the three engine manufacturers of the 2014 season, know that the magic word this year is ‘management’. Fuel management, torque management, temperature management – you name it, it has to be managed.
Many see that as a good thing, which may give a slight advantage to the more experienced drivers that prefer to ‘read the race’ and apply race intelligence before raw speed, like Jenson Button, Nico Rosberg or Sebastian Vettel. Others however fear that 2014 will turn into an even more dreary sequence of horrid eco-runs than the early 2013 season.
Mercedes’s smooth-talking Toto Wolff and his motor-mouth companion Andreas Nikolaus Lauda meanwhile reveal to Auto Motor & Sport that the manufacturers are mainly concerned about getting engine parameters ‘in the correct window’. Does that sound familiar? Yep, it’s 2012 all over again, when in the first half of the season the races were won by whoever happened to have the luck of being the one to hit the sweet spot on tyre temperatures that weekend.
Lauda admits that the Mercedes AMG engine gurus at Brixworth are far from fully understanding their 2014 power plant. “We learn new things every day,” the Austrian admits and explains that controlling oil pressure, intercooling, oil and water temperatures and other engine parameters is like walking on a tight rope. “If you go just a few degrees to high with any of them, the whole thing blows up,” he says. Due to that conundrum, Lauda sees a massive advantage for the factory teams (Mercedes, Ferrari, Red Bull) as none of the customer teams have even remotely comparable dyno’s.
While Mercedes spends a massive effort on testing their engines in an original chassis, their customers (McLaren, Force India, Williams) have to design their car based on informations handed down to them by their supplier. Lauda, however, also sees that as a chance. “Four teams are four sources of information. I will make sure that all the informations will be collected at a single point in our team. That way we can learn and react quicker.
Il Padrino backs up the big mouthed one
On December the 10th 2013 the Fat Hippo ranted about the uselessness of cost capping attempts, which was countered by a swift rebuttal by the gavel wielding host. The obese amphibian mammal now got unexpected backup, going by the name of Luca di Montezemolo, who even uses the same argument to explain why, unless FIA comes up with a better idea, enforcing a cost cap will fail due to the teams’ willingness to cheat.
“For the first time it has been said that we have to define a cost cap,” the Scuderia chief explains in an interview with Autosport. “You know why I have doubts about the cap – because it is very easy to cheat – particularly for manufacturer teams. And Ferrari could be one. I could go to Chrysler in Detroit and ask them to ‘do something for us’ and Mercedes could ask their company.”
Unlike the the resident ill-tempered river-dweller, di Montezemolo acknowledges however that some sort of cost cutting has to be implemented and for want of own ideas, relies on FIA to come up with a solution. “We have to find something that is credible but the cost is the problem number one. If we look at the teams today, in my whole career of F1, I have never seen teams survive with the money of the drivers. This year all the movements of the drivers has been basically based – except for [Kimi] Raikkonen to Ferrari – based on what money drivers can give to the teams. This is for Force India, for Sauber, for Lotus and for Williams. It is not healthy…
“The only way to approach this is to say to the FIA that all the teams are unanimous in agreement to cut the costs. Do whatever you want – come back to us with a proposal that for sure can decrease the costs in a heavy, heavy way. Then we adjust ourselves. We have to achieve a goal to decrease in a heavy way the costs.”
French Police seizes Schumacher’s helmet cam
According to French newspaper Le Dauphiné Libére Michael Schumacher’s helmet was equipped with a helmet cam at the time of his accident and both the destroyed helmet and the cam were now seized by French police as part of the investigation of French authorities. At this moment however there is no information available if the camera was recording at the time of the accident and if it did, whether or not the pictures are salvageable. The authorities pointed out that any information would first be disclosed to the family, before the press is informed.
Schumacher’s son Mick and a friend were questioned by French police as both were eye-witnesses of the accident. During the last two days there had been differing accounts about possible causes of the accident. While Schumachers spokeswoman Sabine Kehm claimed that the accident happened at relatively low speed during an attempt to help a friend, who had crashed, the authorities were doubtful about the accuracy of that testimony, especially since the doctors speculated that the injuries would hint at a high-speed impact.
Meanwhile there were no news about Schumachers condition, which is therefore believed to be “critical but stable” as announced on Jan. 2nd. On Schumacher’s 45th birthday yesterday more than 100 Ferrari fans assembled in front of the Grenoble hospital to show their support for the Scuderia’s most successful driver. Ferrari had initiated this and provided busses.
TJ13 expands in 2014
Following the success of 2013, which saw a substantial number of new regular visitors and contributors, TheJudge13 will strive to improve their portfolio in 2014. We will start by providing foreign language translations of some of the articles and, depending on reader interest, even complete service in other languages. The languages that are currently considered are German, Russian and Spanish. Please use the comment section to tell us what you think about that idea or if you want to help with providing service in one of these or a different language.
Angesichts des grossen Erfolgs im Jahre 2013, in dem die Zahl der Stammbesucher und Gastautoren deutlich angewachsen ist, will TheJudge13 sein Angebot erweitern. Wir beginnen damit, ausgewählte Beiträge in anderen Sprachen anzubieten und – Leserinteresse vorausgesetzt – vielleicht auch das komplette Angebot. Die Sprachen, die derzeit angedacht sind, sind Deutsch Russisch und Spanisch. Wir möchten Euch bitten, uns per Kommentar wissen zu lassen, was Ihr von der Idee haltet oder ob ihr bei der Bereitstellung von Inhalten in einer der genannten oder einer anderen Sprache helfen möchtet.
Смотря на успех сайта в прошлом году, в котором у нас прибыли многие новые читатели и авторы, мы решили расширить асортимент текстов сайта TheJudge13. Начинаем с немецкими, русскими и испанскими переводами нескольких текстов. Пожалуиста прокомментировайте, если вам интересно прочитать TheJudge13 по-русский и если вы хотели бы помогать нам переводить.
Adam Parr joins Cosworth board of directors
Former Williams man Adam Parr, who was bullied out of F1 by the toad from Suffolk through blackmail in March 2012, has joined struggling engine manufacturer Cosworth. The English engine builders, responsible for the legendary DFV engines of the 60s and 70s have been chased away by the new engine rules and have been posting losses this year.