Daily #F1 News and Comment: Friday 21st February 2014

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Ecclestone ‘win’ is fairly hollow

Raised eyebrows over Ferrari’s turbo cover (Updated)

Dictators – ‘surprise’ support for each other

Pastor gets his hand on the E22

Red Bull ‘has lots of problems’ (GMM)

‘New’ F1 already catching up with V8 era speed (GMM)

Williams to show Martini livery on March 6 (GMM)

Pic ‘expects’ Friday work with Lotus in 2014 (GMM)

Photos from Bahrain Testing Day 3 (12:05)




Ecclestone ‘win’ is fairly hollow

Ecclestone may have ‘won’ the case against Constantin Medien AG, but he won on a technicality. As TJ13 reported yesterday, Justice Newey ruled that Ecclestone had paid a bribe to Mr. Gribkowsky as part of a ‘corrupt agreement’ to make sure that the Formula One shares of BayernLB were sold to someone he preferred. Newey stated that Ecclestone wanted to get rid of F1 shares in the hands of Banks and therefore bribed Gribkowsky to make sure that the shares were sold to the right bidder. He also ruled that even in light of his advanced age, Ecclestone wasn’t an honest and reliable witness. In non-legalise: A lying (insert expletive here).

So how could he ‘win’ that case then? That’s very simple. Constantin Medien had sued him for damages, because they say that due to Ecclestone’s meddling the shares were sold under value, which Newey said “was not part of Ecclestone’s goals”.

Mr. E should enjoy it while it lasts, because for the Munich case this verdict doesn’t bode well, as Newey basically ruled that the major accusation of bribery is true and that’s what he stands trial for in the Bavarian capitol. In that case it won’t matter what his motives were, it will only matter if he paid a bribe or not and Justice Newey said – he did. It is unlikely that the Munich court will come to a different conclusion. I bet you look good in stripes, Mr. E.


Raised eyebrows over Ferrari’s turbo cover

The turbos in the new V6 engines spool up to more than 100.000 rpm and FIA mandated a sturdy cover to prevent spectators or track-side personnel being hit by shrapnel in case of a major turbo failure. Mercedes and Renault have done so at the expense of weight. Their covers allegedly weight three kilograms, while the two manufacturers say that Ferrari uses a much lighter cover that doesn’t fit its intended purpose.

Ferrari however counters that their turbo parts are rated for much higher rpms than it will ever achieve and shall therefore not break in the first place. Additionally, sensors shall monitor the turbo and deactivate it in case of abnormal rpms, claiming that even in case of turbo failure, it would happen at low rpms, for which their cover is sufficient to avoid shrapnel.

As a result there are two scenarios. Mercedes and Renault could protest the cover at Melbourne, but it would take considerable time until FIA’s tech experts come to a conclusion, which would mean early race results would remain provisional. A second scenario would be a catastrophic failure of a turbo and spectators with redecorated faces, in which case the turbo cover would be deemed unsafe and Ferrari powered cars were banned from races until it has been redesigned.

How about the sensible option? Instead of saving 2 kg of weight, how about they just strengthen their cover, too and put safety first until we know how reliable the turbos really are?


TJ13 has been doing some research to gain a better understanding of the issue at hand with the Ferrari turbo unit. It appears Ferrari is the only manufacturer that have outsourced the development of their turbo to Honeywell (formerly known as Garrett). The significance you ask? Honeywell has a rich history in motorsport and even more in aeronautics.

The turbine casing from Honeywell is thicker than what is considered the standard as a security measure related to failure of the turbine or compressor. While the casing is thicker than the standard it is still significantly lighter (2-3kg) than the protective cover/casing added by the other manufacturers (BorgWarner – Renault and IHI-Mercedes) to satisfy the FIA regulations.
Ferrari will now argue that the product has proven itself in other forms of motorsport and aeronautics so why is it not safe to use on their car?
The real issue here is that the other manufacturers will effectively carry ballast on their powertrains if they cannot get a similar as that of Ferrari working before 28th February when the engines are homologated.


Dictators – ‘surprise’ support for each other

Bernard Ecclestone, now officially a liar and criminal according to Justice Newey, has come to the defence of fellow tyrant Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin. Not too long ago the Russian parliament Duma passed a law that forbids education of minors about homosexuality. Putin, always the sabre rattler, coined the phrase ‘homosexual propaganda’ for it.

Of course the west erupted in righteous anger, although some forget that most western countries needed up to 50 years to abolish anti-gay laws and cannot understand why Russia doesn’t come to grips with it in just 20.

Formula One’s ‘dear leader’ and ‘president for life’ however is perfectly happy with Putin’s homophobic stance and says he is “in complete agreement” with Putin’s views. He claims that his fellow despot has been “misunderstood” and says that Putin has no problem with homosexuality and merely doesn’t want it to be “advertised to an under-age audience“. Of course the slightly senile career criminal from Suffolk conveniently omits that Putin, like many Russians, regularly refers to homosexuals as “abnormal people” (and that’s the printable variant).

The dictators love-in continues with Ecclestone expressing his deep admiration for Putin and the fact that he “says what he thinks“. Well, Mr. E, Putin also ‘removes’ people he doesn’t like. Oh, wait, is that a snort from Adam Parr I heard?


Pastor gets his hand on the E22

A very determined looking Pastor Maldonado took to the track this morning in Bahrain…

Pastor begins the breaking process of the Lotus E22 today


Red Bull ‘has lots of problems’ (GMM)

World champion Sebastian Vettel finally managed some laps but at a sluggish pace on Thursday as Red Bull’s pre-season crisis continues. His tally of 59 laps in the troubled Renault-powered RB10 ended fears Adrian Newey’s latest creation might never run at all, but he was more than five seconds off the pace set by Kevin Magnussen in the McLaren.

We still have lots of problems – large and small – that we need to fix,” Vettel is quoted by the German newspaper Die Welt. Red Bull’s Dr Helmut Marko admitted that the task now achieved was simply to get the RB10 to work, and that on Thursday the car “was just rolling around“.

Vettel is quoted by Bild newspaper: “The laptimes are not the best, but the first thing was to get the car running.” The reigning quadruple world champion, who won the last 9 races of 2013 on the trot, is now returning to Europe, with teammate Daniel Ricciardo now to complete the first week of running in Bahrain.

Ahead of his turn in the RB10, Australian Ricciardo was his usual positive self in the midst of what many are calling the Red Bull ‘crisis’.

We are not halfway through testing yet, there’s still seven days, which is a lot,” he told Australian media Fairfax. “Then we have got Melbourne and even if – and this is just me talking – even if the first six races don’t go to plan, there’s still 13 or 14 left,” he insisted.

Gamblers would currently be putting their title money on Mercedes.

They are strong, no doubts,” said Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso on Thursday. “But this is (only) a test,” the Spaniard insisted. “You don’t really know how much fuel the cars have, how is the usage of the tyres etcetera at the moment.

So it’s not a worry,” said Alonso.

And he thinks the most important thing in Melbourne next month will be reliability, not performance. “To have the fewest problems and to finish will almost guarantee a good result,” he told Spanish-language reporters in Bahrain.

And a source told a Spanish sports daily that Ferrari – and probably other top teams as well – is keeping its full performance up its sleeve for now.

The fact that Mercedes looks strong was expected, it’s no accident,” said Alonso, “but we also feel good. And I also think that Red Bull will be very strong in Australia.

But Red Bull team boss Christian Horner agrees with Alonso that Mercedes is currently leading the pack. “They’ve done an impressive job,” he told the BBC. “You’d have to say they look the favourites.

They’re doing mileage, running round competitively and they’re in a strong position if the race was tomorrow. Thankfully, the race isn’t tomorrow.

McLaren, despite its 2013 troubles, is another Mercedes-powered team that is looking strong ahead of the new season.

Danish rookie Magnussen’s best time on Thursday was just 2.5 seconds shy of the Bahrain pole last year. “He seemed to be pretty fast, yes,” agreed Force India driver Nico Hulkenberg. “But laptimes are not really on our radar right now.

Faring less well in Bahrain this week is Lotus, who after sitting out the opening test at Jerez are now struggling simply to run the Renault-powered E22. “Renault I think can say more about it,” said Romain Grosjean when asked why his programme on Thursday was limited to just 18 laps, “but some things we need to take the blame for as well.

Lotus team bosses have insisted the decision to sit out Jerez was right, but Grosjean admitted to Auto Motor und Sport that running in Spain “would have helped a bit“.

But now it’s just the way it is,” he added. “Our day of filming at Jerez worked very well and we thought everything was fine, but here we have had some things that have needed hours to fix. It was a surprise that we could have done without.


‘New’ F1 already catching up with V8 era speed (GMM)

Fears that the pace of second-tier GP2 cars could overtake formula one in 2014 are now easing.

After the opening test of the all-new V6 ‘power unit’ era at Jerez recently, Jenson Button warned that GP2 will run F1 close on some circuits this year.

But in Bahrain on Thursday, Button’s new rookie teammate Kevin Magnussen surprised the entire paddock with his best lap of just under 1m35 — a shade over 2.5 seconds shy of Nico Rosberg’s V8-powered 2013 pole position.

Afterwards, Magnussen said: “I never believed that we would be five seconds slower than last year.

It won’t be too long until we have caught up with the old formula one,” he told Germany’s Auto Motor und Sport.

Williams’ Valtteri Bottas agreed: “By the end of the year we will be at 2013 pace — for sure we are not as slow as GP2!

Many paddock figures are now wondering what the works Mercedes cars might be capable of if – like Magnussen’s McLaren – they pushed hard with a fresh set of super-soft tyres.

Mercedes has reportedly been running with the medium tyre only, because the Brackley squad did not ask Pirelli to supply the softest in its range, which are never used in competition in Bahrain.

Team chairman Niki Lauda, however, is now curious.

A test is there for testing, to see the whole picture. You have to know what you can do on each tyre and I would like to know if we could do the Magnussen time on the super-soft tyre,” the Austrian legend said.

Force India’s Nico Hulkenberg, second fastest on Thursday but 1.5 seconds slower than Magnussen, said he is not surprised the ‘new’ F1 is already catching up to the V8 era.

No matter what rule changes there are, the engineers always manage to catch up the lost time,” the German is quoted by Speed Week. “And we are only at the very beginning.


Williams to show Martini livery on March 6 (GMM)

Williams’ new Martini-themed 2014 livery will be unveiled on 6 March, a week before the F1 circus gathers in Melbourne for the season opener.

Initially, it was believed the Grove team would pull the official wraps off its highly-anticipated new title sponsorship deal during Bahrain testing.

But that theory was dismissed on the basis that alcohol advertising is not allowed in Arab countries.

So Speed Week reported that Williams’ deal with the iconic Italian vermouth label would be announced on the Wednesday or Thursday of Australian grand prix week.

But according to France’s Auto Hebdo, the British team has finally confirmed the real launch date — March 6, exactly a week before the paddock bursts to life in Melbourne.


Pic ‘expects’ Friday work with Lotus in 2014 (GMM)

Charles Pic is expecting to appear on the timesheets in some Friday practice sessions this year, after signing up as the new Lotus third driver.

Officially, after the Frenchman lost his Caterham race seat, Lotus on Thursday said only that Pic will work on the simulator and provide support at the grands prix.

I am very excited to join a top team,” the 24-year-old, who will work with fellow support drivers Marco Sorensen and Nicolas Prost, said.

Obviously, the big change is that I won’t be racing, but I will be at the races and working in meetings which will help me develop and progress as a driver,” Pic added.

And he told France’s RMC Sport that his new role will involve driving the actual F1 car.

It is expected that I will take the wheel on Friday,” said Pic, who was presented as the new Lotus driver on Thursday afternoon in Bahrain.

It’s important when you are a third driver that you actually drive, and I will,” he insisted, without specifying his precise test and driving programme.

I hope I can use it (the opportunity) to come back to a race seat in 2015,” said Pic.


Photos from Bahrain Testing Day 3

Here is a gallery of some photos from Twitter this morning of the 3rd test in day at Bahrain. This will be updated throughout the day.


87 responses to “Daily #F1 News and Comment: Friday 21st February 2014

  1. So the FIA approved Ferrari’s turbo, Renault and Mercedes would like to copy Ferrari’s solution and also lose 4/5 kg., but because the time is limited, they decide to play the safety card.
    Not a very convincing argument if you ask me.

    • Have to agree with you Enzo. Prime example of how the FIA stifles innovation.

      Ferrari should be applauded for building a safe and innovative engine.

      It is easy to see why the teams cannot agree on anything, none of them thinks for the bigger picture, it’s all about ‘me’. Mr E has taught them well…

      • But the question is, is it really that safe? What if mercedes and renault are right. Do we really need a worst case scenario to happen before we believe them?

        • The point is that Renault and Mercedes considered copying Ferrari’s solution, but the time frame is to short (28 febr.), so now the approach is that it’s not safe.
          If they would’ve had time enough to copy it, then it would suddenly be safe again ?

        • Hmm, Ferrari said so and someone would be accountable. I don’t think progress has ever been made by being overly cautious.

          I know in today’s world most people get taught to be risk averse but very few of the explorers and inventors in the past were risk averse or were they?

      • About the protest against the Ferrari protective cover:
        “Ferrari is pretty calm about all this, as they have received a written reply from the FIA ​​delegate Charlie Whiting, who found, after the appropriate analysis along with his team, that the Ferrari power unit is completely within the regulations”

        • I want to be optimistic with you Enzo but I can also remember last year with Merc’s test where Whiting gave them the nod and then it was said he did not have the right to do so..

          • Just let me enjoy the moment Don, to have the legality of the Ferrari questioned by the other teams, is a badge of honor that has been away to long from Maranello 😉

  2. “most western countries needed up to 50 years to abolish anti-gay laws and cannot understand why Russia doesn’t come to grips with it in just 20.”

    Nice point.

    “Putin, like many Russians, regularly refers to homosexuals as “abnormal people””

    What would be that in Russian? Ненормальные люди (nenormalinye liudi)? Or some other juicy expletive?

    • Something like that. The most commong one is Goluboiy (Blue one) others are Pidaras (Pervert), Kosyel (a nether hind orifice), yobaniy v rot (he who performed oral gratification).

      • I don’t think Goluboy is meant to be derragotory. It’s an informal word, and kind of like gay. Pidaras is quite derragotory, and part of Russian Mat jargon language, and so are the rest. I don’t think Putin would ever use any of these words in public. I looked this up on google, but couldn’t find references. Although I never heard of Putin using “abnormal people” myself, the words he probably used are nenormalniy (“not normal”, could also be used as reference to people with metal disorder) or invalid (usually someone with physical disability).

        • Actually I would be rather surprised if in Russian ‘invalid’ were used while referring to homosexuals. ‘nenormalniy’, on the other hand…

        • Oh, I vividly remember a couple of years ago a guy from Moscow forcefully expressing страна дегенератов (‘strana degeneratov’, a country of degenerates) at the sight of two girls holding hands in France.

        • Putin usually refers to it as ‘unusual orientation’ or similar terms. Of course he doesn’t use mat. The terms I listed were what is used by the population. Goluboiy, which is not derrogatory per se is used by those, who don’t have a problem with it – the young generation. The majority however uses terms that aren’t fit to print.

          • Just a note: As far as I understand, ‘goluboy’ may or may not be derogatory. I can see it being used in either case, young generation or not. It’s a bit like ‘gringo’ in Latin American Spanish (in a different context, of course).

          • Say, worthy Tovarich Gippo … where did you get your knowledge of Russian? Do you have special ties with the country, or do you have some roots in the former DDR? (Just curious).

            I’m tying to learn some, but aside from being able to read the alphabet, counting to five some of the myriad uses of пожалуйста I haven’t been able to make much progress 🙂

          • @conzo
            I was born in in the G.D.R. in 1974. As for knowing Russian – like all good communistical citizens I learned Russian in school, but unlike most of my fellow countrymen, I didn’t forget what I learned 😉 For reasons that elude my understanding, I have a peculiar talent for languages. I passed my Russian a-level exam 3 years early and the English one 2 years early. During the mid-noughts I spent considerable time in Omsk, Siberia, which furthered my understanding of Russian language and culture 🙂

          • @Hippo
            Thanks for that info! Yeah, many friends and acquaintances over here (Leipzig) tell me they forgot most of what they learned from Russian. Quite impressive as a native speaker of German you’ve got a flair for both English and Russian!

            How was Omsk? I spent two weeks in Krasnoyarsk when visiting my in-laws in 2012 and I remember Omsk as one of those exotic cities on the highway signs on our way from the airport 🙂 I really enjoyed my stay – such a fascinating culture shock for a simple Dutchy like me 🙂

          • All this complicated phraseology Hippo; isn’t there a simple translation for ‘poofter’?

          • Russia is a fantastic country. Very friendly people. The family of my girlfriend all but adopted me 😉 Although we broke up many moons ago, her family still maintains contact with me.

          • I did feel very welcome, and my inlaws spoiled me like I haven’t been spoiled in ages 🙂

            From my (very limited) experience, it’s true what they say that even though in public Russians may be grumpy and cold, once you get to know them in private, they’re very warm and welcoming.

            On that note: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h0L5sEc4Vkk 🙂

  3. I don’t think that the State of Bavaria will be ordering any extra-small sized orange jumpsuits any time soon, given that Herr. Dr. Gribkowsky is already “out” and back in gainful employment, despite the 8 year sentence. It will more likely be a massive fine (or “settlement”) than porridge.

    On the positive side, I confirm that the Justice Palace here in Munich has traditional hinged doors so that unlike at the UK High Court, the accused should have no problems getting to the dock.

    • There is so much talk and headlines that he won the case. But it was a civil suit, so effectively he did not lose – a subtle difference I know. Its the judge’s written comments that are more damning, just not sure if they will have any provenance in the Bavarian case?

    • Strange he mentions grandprix.com – it’s just GMM.
      Did have to look at F1enigma though, I thought this was the Polish kid who spammed all forums with fake Kubica comeback news – apparently not but his ‘news’ is from last july?
      So mixed feelings with this list.

      • Dimi PAPADOPOULOS (F1 enigma) is from Greece and a well known F1 journo, his last blog post was yesterday. Grandprixcom is Joe Saward’s 2nd twitter account for his blog 🙂

        • Thanks for the update. Maybe Papadoupoulous’ mobile wordpress doesn’t work well. I know only the website grandprix.com which was started with Joe Saward and now is just GMM.

  4. A win is a win… BE winning on technicality or not makes no difference. As far as the court is concerned BE is innocent of the charges brought.

    If the Judge has sour grapes based on not being able to snag the old man, then that’s his problem. Legally and in future cases, the innocent ruling matters here, not the character statements of Newey.

    BE won big time here. If it were the other way round, and BE was guilty but Newey said BE was a marvellous fellow, BE would still be fucked.

    So Newey can talk all he wants, but ultimately BE is innocent based on the charges and many smart people weighing the evidence. The judge going any further with those post case statements will only serve BE to force Newey to recuse himself in any future BE litigation.

    FYI: I am not a BE fan, but there is some shit being sprouted as to the importance of the statement vs the outcome.

    As Lorde says, BE is drinking Cristal in his Maybach right now and “he don’t care… He ain’t caught up this love affair…”

    • No. BE isn’t guilty of undervalueing F1. Which isn’t just a technicality but the whole reason for the case!
      So yes, that’s a win. But it looks very bad for him in germany that a British judge rules he did bribe – which is the reason for the German case.

      • Yes – and I presume the burden of proof will be higher in any criminal case in Germany to that required in the civil case just held here, ie beyond reasonable doubt, rather than the balance of probabilities. So the fact that a civil court judge declares that he used bribery and that he is not a reliable witness will require separate proof if itis to be accepted in a criminal court? Who cares – it is reported that he is getting out of some of his directorships with F1 companies anyway, so we may be seeing his swan song?

    • Question re verdicts UK legal system. Over here in the colonies folks are found not guilty rather than innocent, at least in criminal proceedings. In a civil suit the jury finds either for the plaintiff or defendant based on a preponderance of the evidence; at no point is any one considered “innocent”. Is it roughly the same over on your side of the pond? And I would also agree at best he has been found not to have purposely undervalue the shares, which is no where near being innocent LOL! 🙂

  5. As long as he gets paid his exorbitant race sanctioning fees, Bernie will kiss about anyone’s bottoms, be it Putin’s or those of repressive Sheiks of Bahrain.

  6. Murray Walker: “In order to win you first have to finish.”
    BlackJackFan: “In order to finish you first have to start…”
    Vettel: ” In order to start you first have to get the car running.”
    Bernie: “In order to start running you first have to have a judge after you…!”
    Where would we be without F1…? 😉

    • Yeah, well don’t forget Fud’s First Law of Opposition: If you push it hard enough it WILL fall over.

    • We don’t know the fuel loads, but Lewis did this in the softs while K-Mag did his (1.34.9) in the supersofts, which makes Lewis’/Merc’s time all the more impressive.

      • What about the McLarens? Everyone seems so obsessed with Merc vs Ferrari vs Red Bull, and McLaren is relegated to an afterthought. So far I got the feeling that McLaren is shaping quite strongly, with “Magnussen on rails” and good handling which should suit Button, too. What is your gut feeling?

          • I think it’s just assumed now that Mercedes will be ahead of the recovering McLaren this year, as they are the works team. Hamilton looking confident is all we need to know – that’s giving the game away. Rosberg must be secretly confident as well if he can get a handle on the car development ahead of Lewis.

            But, I want Kimi or Alonso to win the WDC – after Mercedes veto’d the weight gain, which gave us size 0 drivers for this year. They can have the WCC, for which they are due historically, but maybe take the drivers title with Lewis next year, pretty please! Alonso needs a final hurrah before retirement.. and Ferrari will give it to him, instead of Kimi, that’s for sure.

        • Last year, my friends and I did a poll on our blog (which is dedicated to covering the McLaren for the Brazilian public), and most supported Kevin instead of Jenson, including some thinking that McLaren could have taken advantage of the change in regulation and have gone further launching Stoffel this year too (crazy people, including me).

          Here in Brazil, I can tell you that Magnussen is one that would be a champion very welcome.

          • If Honda will be OK with not having a WDC lead driver (Button, Alonso etc.), then Magnussen/Vandoorne I can see being their long term driver line up, like Hakkinen/Coulthard, until a hard charger comes up like de Vries (Kimi). Else, they need to sign Hulkenberg ASAP.

      • Don’t think it’s sandbagging per se, if you look at Merc’s methodology all last year they would get fast up to a point in P2 and then focus exclusively on race pace after. They seem to be working in a similar fashion through testing. You’ll probably see a similar lap from Rosberg tomorrow, but expect extra mileage and the possibility that something went wrong with the Merc when they turned it up to 11, as they seem to be light on laps today.

      • I saw on twitter that Lewis said he was trying to break the Mercedes as much as possible. Quote is on Jenny Gow’s twitter with a funny response from Mercedes twitter.

  7. Just been reading the Autosport coverage of the testing this morning and was interested in the fact that the stewards or mechanics couldn’t touch a broken down car for an absolute age. It was because the ERS meant the car was not safe to be touched. Does this mean then this season at certain races the safety car could be out for half the race because the stewards can’t clear it safely? Could end up with the whole race behind the safety car at Monaco.
    Or is it just because the cars are new at the moment and this won’t be an issue once the season gets going does anyone know?

    • Makes no difference from the 2013 race anyway! All that’s been added is the safety car at the head of the queue… Then we’ll have another 2010 race finish to spice it up..

  8. So what happens if a car catches fire and the fire marshals are prevented from doing anything because of an electrocution risk from the ERS.
    It is a possibility,given the location of the batteries.

  9. If Renault get more involved in the Lotus enterprise again (say buying it back and making it the works team again), would we have the French trinity of Grosjean, Vergne/Pic? Prost could be the test driver… We’ll see how long Maldonado/PDVSA money continues, along with GENII at the helm.. But a contract to 2018, with Caterham and Red Bull relationships souring.. points to the 20 year team association at least continuing for the next few years, at least. Infiniti leaving Red Bull could be another sign, too..

  10. “A test is there for testing, to see the whole picture. You have to know what you can do on each tyre and I would like to know if we could do the Magnussen time on the super-soft tyre,” N. Lauda

    Really a better time, hã?

  11. Is Alonso having a go at the Ferrari’s looks ?

    (from the BBC website today) “There are still some small problems which we must try and resolve, just like when you buy a new domestic appliance…”

    I’m sure they will be delighted with the comparison…

    • My domestic appliances work straight from the box. Maybe Alonso used Bernie’s definition.

      But it Does seem offensive!

    • His interview was broadcast on Sky F1

      He did NOT mention domestic appliances.

      He mentioned computers.

      And how we often have problems with them in our home.

  12. Is it me, or does the blue Williams have the left rear tyre fitted on the wrong side in the photos above? Isn’t that forbidden now? I thought left side referred to looking at the car from behind, as is the case during pit stop commentaries.

  13. Your honor,
    Correct me if I’m wrong but there wasn’t an upper limit for a car’s weight or fuel earlier. Now there is an upper limit to the amount of fuel a car can carry over a race distance. I was thinking the other day, earlier like in Bahrain with vettel, imagine a driver is excluded from qualifying for whatever reason, he has to start from the back of the grid. Until last year, you could start from the pits, full him up with tons of fuel, figuratively, change the gears a bit, so for overtaking and let the driver have at it. With the new girl regulations, do you think a driver can go all out banzai like that? Could you please ask what the paddock thinks of this rare but possible scenario? 🙂

    • @ iceman

      There is no limit to how much fuel a car can carry.

      However you can only use 100 Kg of fuel during the race – lights out to checkered flag.

      So cars will need more than 100 Kg in them to compensate for the parade / warm up laps and the slowing down lap.

      And it’s impossible to drive flat out over a race without exceeding the 100 Kg limit.

      Plus the gear ratios are fixed this year too.

      So the simple answer to your question is NO 🙂

      • Correct. Fuel flow is also limited to 100 kg/hr maximum rate and the flow rate is constant above 10,500 rpm. The flow rate and consumption are measured in real time by an FIA homologated flow sensor and the data is sent to the FIA. I believe there is a time penalty for exceeding the flow rate and disqualification for exceeding the 100 kg.

        Manky is right, no way to do this.

      • Sorry if my wording confused you. But that was my exact point. Since you can only use 100 kgs of fuel in a race, you can’t use extra fuel like they could have earlier to string out a stint and make 1 less pitstop and go balls out to overtake. Since we now have the limit, how different will the drivers go? Aim for points, so that they can atleast finish? What would a realistic finish position be right now. I remember Kimi in 05 Suzuka coming from way behind to win. I don’t think such a thing would be possible with these fuel regs this year.

      • Actually, WAYYYYYYY back in the day (1930’s maybe??) there was an upper weight limit. I think the basis was that heavier cars had bigger engines and were therefore faster.

        But I was a long time ago 😉

    • I.e. you can carry more fuel if you like… but it won’t make you any faster though, just slower! Starting from the back could be worse in that scenario, but if overtaking is easier this year, then perhaps not.

    • I never did understand that, about altering the gear ratios to promote easy overtaking. Why did they not do that for every race? Its not allowed now though, any reason why?

      • Because Red Bull’s philosophy was to be at the front so you never need to overtake.

        They sacrificed top speed ( therefore overtaking ) for an overall faster lap time.

        And usually disappeared off into the distance …….

        • Thanks for that. 🙂 Its been bugging me for ages.
          What was the reason behind banning the altering of gear ratios?

          • Cost. And also, with the greatly increased torque of the turbo motors there isn’t the peaky 1500 rpm (or whatever) power band of the V8 engines; there will be more than enough torque to spin wheels at lower rpm.

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