Daily #F1 News and Comment: Monday 30th June 2014

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Previously on TJ13:

The Top-20 #F1 Constructors who Failed to win a Championship – 14th Sauber

Dennis: Jenson must improve


OTD Lite: 2013 – Rosberg wins at Silverstone

Who is buying Caterham?

Drivers’ Championship Team-mate Comparison

Mercedes driver needle heads into Silverstone (GMM)

Hakkinen tips Ferrari to shed a driver (GMM)

Tweet of the day

Formula E: 75 days and counting

Silverstone Ticket Sales

Mercedes divisions inevitable

Caterham to give Rio Haryanto a test drive at Silvestone

Caterham latest

Silverstone and Tyres


OTD Lite: 2013 – Rosberg wins at Silverstone

Silverstone 2013 - Nico Rosberg WinWith the British Grand Prix around the corner let us reflect on last year’s race. Rosberg won his second race of the season and the third of his career, while Webber recovered from 14th to finish second and Alonso third.

The race will probably remembered more for the high speed tire blowouts we saw. First, coming out of the fast turn four, race leader Hamilton experienced a spectacular left rear delamination which forced him to navigate over three quarters of the lap back to the pitlane on three tyres.

This was followed by Massa, also coming out of turn four, spinning on to the tarmac run off – he dropped to 22nd and dead last. A third delamination occurred only seven laps after Hamilton’s. Jean Eric Vergne had yet to pit and was running in 7th when going into the fast Stowe corner his left rear too let go. Vergne’s tyre shredded it’s carcass and threw debris into the path of  Raikkonen’s Lotus. Debris also hit Raikkonen’s helmet.

No one is expecting to see the same tyre problems this year though but can Rosberg win on Hamilton’s home track?

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Who is buying Caterham?

Today we are expecting to learn who the new owners are of the Caterham F1 team. Word on the street is that the buyer is indeed from the Middle East. What is certain though is that they are in need of a new team principal as Cyril Abiteboul cleared his desk and left the building on Friday as he heads back to Viry to help Renault sort out their F1 engine problems.

TJ13 has received a report of unusual and substantial Caterham F1 truck sightings on a number of occasions during the past two weeks. These have been very early in the morning (4 truck convoy pre 6am Wednesday last)) on the town roads of Guilford and Woking…

Karun Chandhook believes it was inevitable that Tony Fernandes would eventually throw in the towel on F1. “You can understand why he’s sort of fallen out of love with F1 because they haven’t scored a point in five years. Tony’s spent an awful lot of money along with his business partner Kamarudin. (But Marussia) have scored two world championship points and it’s highly unlikely you are going to beat them.

So at the end of the year it could mean he has to spend another $30 million. I could think of a fairly big reason to stop loving Formula One,” Chandhok told SKY during the FOS weekend at Goodward.

“He’s got a football team that’s back in the premiership, a motorbike team that is doing exceedingly well in Moto2 — and it costs him a tenth of what it costs to run a Formula One team. Is it (F1) giving him the return he wants? Probably not,” said Chandhok.

Kamui Kobayashi following a year away from F1 doesn’t want to think about the worse case scenario. “Financially, I think we’re in a very difficult situation but I cannot do anything so I just focus on my job, I just hope that somebody can help this team. This is the only thing I can say.”

The Caterham staff in Leafield staff have been told nothing and as can be expected, morale is very low, though plans are being made for the green monsters to travel to Silverstone this weekend for the British Grand Prix.

Further, having been silent since last Wednesday, Caterham F1 began tweeting again this morning informing fans that “We’re delighted to confirm that @rharyantoracing will drive day two of the Silverstone Test for us”

Rio Haryanto is an Indonesian Racing Driver who competes in the GP2 series with Caterham Racing. Will Stephens will be driving for Caterham also during the test.

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Drivers’ Championship Team-mate Comparison

About this time of the year I like to dis-entangle the techni-colour spaghetti of the Drivers’ Championship points graph, and boil it down to a strict comparison between team-mates, at least of anyone scoring any serious points.

I’ve kept each graph as simple as possible, roughly on the same scale. I thought about using Rosberg as a reference on all of them, but found it a bit distracting.

I hope you all have fun drawing your own conclusions from some squiggly lines on a screen! – Dobzizzle

Rosberg vs Hamilton

2014 Drivers' Championship Team-mate Comparison Graph post-Austria Ros-Ham

Alonso vs Raikkonen

2014 Drivers' Championship Team-mate Comparison Graph post-Austria Alo-Rai

Ricciardo vs Vettel

2014 Drivers' Championship Team-mate Comparison Graph post-Austria Ric-Vet

Button vs Magnussen

2014 Drivers' Championship Team-mate Comparison Graph post-Austria But-Mag

Bottas vs Massa

2014 Drivers' Championship Team-mate Comparison Graph post-Austria Bot-Mas

Hulkenburg vs Perez

2014 Drivers' Championship Team-mate Comparison Graph post-Austria Hul-Per

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Mercedes driver needle heads into Silverstone (GMM)

Heading into his home race at Silverstone, the pressure is on Lewis Hamilton. He may have the fastest car in the field, but so too does Mercedes teammate and championship leader Nico Rosberg, who successfully broke the Briton’s early-season four-race winning streak. “It’s good to know I have the momentum fully on my side. Definitely good,” the German said after winning the recent Austrian grand prix.

Undoubtedly, there is an element of psychological needle between Hamilton and Rosberg, whose long relationship almost completely imploded in Monaco a month ago. But team boss Toto Wolff is worried that the war is actually only just beginning. “We see that it’s getting very competitive,” said the Austrian. “Transparency is suffering a little bit and we need to make sure that this is not detrimental to the team.”

The ‘transparency’ he is talking about is having both sides of the silver-clad garage working together for united glory, rather than against each other for the drivers’ title. Rosberg admits: “It’s all open — the data, everything. It’s just that sometimes you are not going to put it on the table, and say ‘look here at what I’ve done’.”

One man who has seen a situation just like this go from bad to disastrous is Jo Ramirez, who was team manager at McLaren during the Ayrton Senna versus Alain Prost battle. “I probably see that they (Hamilton and Rosberg) are going to end up completely separate,” he predicted. “The first time that they collide is going to be the crunch. It’s not just the drivers it’s everyone behind them. I can see why Toto is saying that it can be contagious,” Ramirez told the Telegraph.

For now, even in the wake of the Monaco controversy, the battle is little more than an on-track rivalry and a light psychological needle between the races. Hamilton, for instance, told British reporters at the weekend that, back in his karting days, “Nico was quick but he wasn’t as quick as Robert Kubica”.

And he also intimated that Rosberg has been lucky to build his 29-point championship lead off the back of two Hamilton DNFs. “I want Nico to finish every race,” he said. “Then you can’t say I’m in the lead because he’s had problems — it can only be that I’ve done a better job.

TJ13 Comment: It would seem that Formula One is desperately trying to bring fans in with every gimmick possible, chocolate-teapot grade tyres, DRS and stewards who put health and safety officials to shame with their blinkered approach to penalties and infringements. So what can be done to spice up this ‘vaguely interesting’ show? Hang on gentlemen, we need angst, hatred and paranoia, it’s always worked in the past..

So once again, the unimaginative British press wheel out Jo Ramirez to attempt to compare a battle that seared itself into the memory of all who witnessed it’s destructive qualities over two decades ago.  Two giants of the sport being compared to the sugar-sweet stars of today. It would be akin to trying to compare The Beatles during their Sergeant Pepper phase with the throwaway pop of One Direction…

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Hakkinen tips Ferrari to shed a driver (GMM)

Ferrari appears likely to shed at least one of its existing drivers. That is the view of retired double world champion Mika Hakkinen, who thinks the Maranello team is grappling not only with a less than fully competitive 2014 car. The Finn thinks Ferrari also has a driver problem.

“In my opinion Ferrari is more and more into the situation of eventually replacing one of the two drivers,” he said in his latest interview with his sponsor Hermes. “The comments being made by Fernando Alonso do not sound like someone who will be with Ferrari for much longer. And I don’t want to say anything against Kimi Raikkonen, except that he is constantly behind his teammate,” 45-year-old Hakkinen added.

The former McLaren driver also commented on the 2014 plight of F1’s reigning quadruple world champion Sebastian Vettel. “I do not understand how it is possible that his (Red Bull) car is permanently broken. Incredible,” said Hakkinen.

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Tweet of the day

After many months of silence, the F1 #Samurai is back…. so what’s going on?

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Lewis Hamilton also joins in the philosophical musing on twitter by posting

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Formula E: 75 days and counting

It’s fair to say Formula E is attracting more interest than some of my F1 associates believed would happen. It’s now just 75 days until the opening race in Beijing which will take place on a circuit that has been designed around the Olympic village and the iconic ‘bird’s nest’ stadium.

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Many things will be different from F1 and the first being there is no sign on the Horizon of Mr. E’s chum – Mr. Tilke. The track has been designed by Rodrigo Nunes, is 3.44km in length and boasts an impressive cityscape backdrop taking in both the Beijing National Aquatics Centre and the Olympic Stadium itself. It will see the 20 Formula E drivers tackle a mix of tight left-hand turns – offering late braking and overtaking opportunities – together with twisty chicanes and two main straights. In addition, the track features a unique ‘U-shaped’ pitlane with spectator areas located inside giving fans and an incredible close-up view of the action.

Lucas di Grassi shares his thoughts on the circuit. “The Beijing track is an amazing facility. For the drivers, it will be a tremendous challenge to learn the limits of this track quickly, as well as to understand the best overtaking opportunities. The most obvious places are likely to be Turns 1, 2, 6, 19 and 20. The circuit will also require lots of traction and braking stability, while the energy recuperation at braking zones will help to stabilise the car. Also, it will be our first ever race, so all the drivers will be raring to go! The pit lane is also unique and requires some special practice to get right, also because drivers have to switch cars in their pit box.”

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Silverstone Ticket Sales

Business is brisk for tickets for the British GP. However, at £170 for the weekend, the GA price at the Northamptonshire circuit is one of the most expensive in the world. In Monza, a three day GA ticket costs just over £80.

Yet, grandstand seat sales have been doing well. The National and International pit straights are sold out, as is Copse and Stowe. There is around 50% availability still in Becketts, Vale and the Village, Lufield and Woodcote, whilst Abby and Vale have plenty of availability.

There are ‘on circuit’ grandstand upgrade options for GA customers which usually fill up the stands for the Sunday race. These may sell out fairly quickly on Friday and Saturday should the current BBC weather forecast be correct. Rain Is highly likely on both Saturday and Sunday.

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Mercedes divisions inevitable

Most F1 fans will have some knowledge of the 1989 season. A year where Senna and Prost were team mates. A year where the bitterness between the two grew from race to race. The year when for many Senna, deliberately drove Prost off the track in japan. At the end of the year, Prost was crowned champion and walked out of the team.

Jo Ramirez, McLaren’s team co-ordinator at the time recalls how it was between Senna and Prost. “When it got bad, it really got bad – we had two teams within one. They would hide things from each other. At McLaren it was almost like having two different briefings in two different places. Very often they had separate meetings, or in the same room but in different corners.”

Though the team attempted to prevent this division, insisting that the two sets of engineers travelled together and ate together, Ramirez remembers how it was behind closed doors. “Senna’s engineers would generally keep to themselves and Prost’s engineers would keep to themselves,” Ramirez says. “They were both more interested in their driver winning.”

There has been genuine concern within Mercedes over how close they were run in Austria by the Williams team. This is probably the usual F1 paranoia and business as usual will be resumed in Silverstone, yet Toto Wolff was most revealing following the race in Styria.

“The atmosphere wasn’t like in the races before: we see it’s getting very competitive, transparency is suffering a little bit,” said Toto Wolff. “I’m not saying this has happened, but we don’t want to see any sandbagging and aborted laps when we need to learn about the car.”

Nico Rosberg has since defied this call for transparency, “If I find a little bit of an advantage somewhere then I’m not going to tell everybody about it, I’ll keep it to myself,” said the German driver..

Ramirez see’s echo’s of McLaren 1989 in the Mercedes team right now. “I didn’t think it would happen before the half year – that they are getting so tight up between them. I probably see that they are going to end up completely separate. The first time that they collide is going to be the crunch. It’s not just the drivers it’s everyone behind them. I can see why Toto is saying that it can be contagious.”

It does appear inevitable that Rosberg and Hamilton will have ‘an incident’ during the season. Rosberg was deferential in Bahrain, where a coming together could easily have occurred with Lewis. That said, it appears Bahrain Nico has been consigned to history – and a new steely replacement Nico has emerged and is competing to the very limit with his team mate.

Hamilton is now on the back foot and can’t play the percentages game – he needs to win, beat his team mate and take some risks in getting this done.

This kind of desperation may well be the catalyst for an explosive weekend in Northamptonshire. Should the Mercedes collide, all hell will break lose within the team and the fireworks inside Brackley will be spectacular to behold.

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Caterham to give Rio Haryanto a test drive at Silvestone

They may be down but they are not out! Today Caterham confirmed Rio Haryanto, their GP2 EQ8 Caterham Racing driver from Indonesia, will be in action during the Silverstone test which commences just after the British Grand Prix.

Haryanto tested for then Virgin Racing in 2010 Adu Dhabi Young Driver test and made another appearance in 2012 also at Silverstone with Marrusia.

Rio HaryantoAs can be expected the young Indonesian is “delighted” that the test is with Caterham. Commenting on his test appointment Haryanto said, “The last time I drove an F1 car was at the young driver test at Silverstone in 2012 and with the new engine regulations this year I’m sure it’ll be a very different experience. The goal for me is to use this day as another learning experience, another chance to build on the F1 laps I’ve already done, and while my focus before the test is obviously to do the best job I can in GP2, I will be 100% ready to work to the plan the team set and help them develop as best I can.

I would like to take this chance to thank Pertamina [Indonesian state-owned oil and natural gas corporation] for their continued support during my GP2 season with EQ8 Caterham Racing, which has provided me with the opportunity to test the Caterham F1 Team car.

Is he future Formula One material?

2011 GP3 Series Marussia Manor Racing 16 2 0 1 4 31 7th
Auto GP DAMS 14 1 1 2 3 82 7th
GP2 Final 2 0 0 0 0 0 17th
2012 GP2 Series Carlin 24 0 1 1 0 38 14th
2013 GP2 Series Barwa Addax Team 22 0 0 0 1 22 19th
2014 GP2 Series EQ8 Caterham Racing 6 0 0 0 1 26* 7th*

Jury, what is the verdict?

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Caterham latest

Adam Cooper has just reported that, “A Swiss-Middle Eastern consortium is understood to be behind the takeover of Caterham F1, in a deal that will be confirmed in the coming days.

It’s believed that the consortium members, including interests from Dubai, intend to keep a low profile. The deal was brokered by a former F1 insider who will retain a role as an advisor.

A new team principal and new technical direction will be installed at Caterham’s Leafield base, and it’s understood that their brief will be to improve the efficiency of the team – and try to ensure that it finishes in the top 10 of this year’s World Championship.

The Caterham name will be retained, as there are no plans to request a change for 2015 and beyond. The team will also continue to use Renault engines”.

Finishing 10th with a Renault engine may be a serious challenge. Also, this is all very mysterious…..

Isn’t the whole point of people who know nothing about F1 buying teams… not to keep a low profile – but use the global platform it provides?

“Swiss/Middle Eastern consortium”…. Mmmm…. heard something like that before?

It is difficult not to suspect Mansoor Ijaz may have his sticky fingers somewhere in this pie…  if only because of the car crash publicity so far……

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Silverstone and Tyres

Whatever the rights and wrongs of the turgid and endless politicking and bitching over tyres in early 2013, we can never forget the iconic images as Hamilton’s left rear tyre shredded at high speed during the British GP.

The fact that certain teams were running ridiculous tyre pressures beyond Pirelli’s recommended limits was of course irrelevant – and will be remembered by few.

Anyway, based on the season so far, there will be no exploding Pirelli’s in Northamptonshire this weekend. Pirelli are for the third time this year, bringing the combination of hard and medium tyres for this GP – previously in Malaysia and Spain.

Silverstone will provide the highest levels of lateral energy loading the cars will have experienced this year, and Pirelli are taking no chances. With variable weather conditions and a high chance of rain this weekend, the cars will experience a wide range of track temperatures together with wind speeds.

It will be a challenge to have the car setup just right for whatever Sunday’s weather gods choose to send.

Paul Hembery, Pirelli motorsport director: “Silverstone is one of the truly great venues of the year, which is steeped in history and always thrilling for the drivers and fans because of the high speeds involved.

British fans are among the most knowledgeable and enthusiastic of the year: it’s absolutely fantastic to see them out in full force, whatever the weather. And the weather is always a talking point in Silverstone of course; in the past we’ve seen everything from bright sunshine to torrential rain.

As a result, the ability to make quick strategy decisions based on real-time conditions is always very important, as you can’t necessarily rely on previous data. We’ve brought our two hardest tyres, which should be well suited to the conditions, and after the race we look forward to the final dedicated in-season tyre test of the year, from Tuesday to Wednesday.

Ferrari and Marussia will be driving for us on the first day, with Red Bull and Lotus on the second day, as we continue our development test campaign.”

The tyre choices so far

P Zero Red P Zero Yellow P Zero White P Zero Orange
Australia Soft Medium
Malaysia Medium Hard
Bahrain Soft Medium
China Soft Medium
Spain Medium Hard
Monaco Supersoft Soft
Canada Supersoft Soft
Austria Supersoft Soft
Great Britain Medium Hard

 

At Silverstone, teams tend to run medium to high levels of downforce to obtain the best possible cornering speeds through the first half of the lap, with its sequence of fast corners. These settings are not too much of a handicap on the straights, as they tend to be quite short – with short braking areas over the course of the lap as a whole. This can make it quite challenging to overtake.

Silverstone is a high-energy circuit, as the fast and flowing nature of the circuit means that the tyres are constantly subjected to different forces: sometimes several different forces at the same time. Lateral accelerations peak at 5g while the surface temperature of the tyres can exceed 110 degrees centigrade.

Pirelli say that, “the medium tyre is a low working range compound, capable of achieving optimal performance even at low temperatures. The hard tyre is a high working range compound, suitable for higher temperatures and more strenuous track conditions. Temperatures in Silverstone are among the most varied of the year: there can sometimes be a shift of more than 15 degrees of track temperature between sessions, making strategy hard to predict”

Which tyre is best for the race will depend on what the weather is doing and expect to see the inters and maybe full wets at some point on either Saturday or Sunday.

The Silverstone track is quite intensively used during the season, especially with the support races during the grand prix weekend, so track evolution is not as much as a factor as it is at some other circuits.

The winning strategy last year was two stops. Sebastian Vettel completed two stints on the medium tyre before a final stint on the hard tyre, to win the race for Red Bull, from third on the grid.

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64 responses to “Daily #F1 News and Comment: Monday 30th June 2014

    • Again, highly unlikely. I would suspect that the Hysterical One has little to no respect for Button, and nor do the tifosi. I don’t expect Button at Ferrari in any way, shape or form. They’re more likely to put Binachi in the 2nd Ferrari, rather than Button.

      I remember one-two years ago when in Abu Dhabi Alonso’s engineer had this to say after Vettel made a daring move on Button towards the end of the race and overtook him: “Button si e stato endormito” (sorry, my Italian is quite rough on the margins, especially in writing). The way I heard this message, it was rather derogatory (loosely translated): “Button fell asleep and let Vettel pass him. No surprises there.”

    • If Alonso couldn’t get Ferrari as the front with his perceived impecable skills of developing a car, what hope does Button have? The past two years showed that the reason McLaren was developing well was Hamilton, not Button. And even in 2009, Brawn went backwards and the one who won some races after the first 7, it was Barrichelo, not Button, because the former started developing the car to his liking.

  1. “Two giants of the sport being compared to the sugar-sweet stars of today. It would be akin to trying to compare The Beatles during their Sergeant Pepper phase with the throwaway pop of One Direction…”

    Fuckin A!

    (Excuse the crassness, but the Americans say it best in regards to agreement.)

    • Did catch the TT? They might as well give him the championship trophy now, because it’s in the bag.

      What’s up with Lorenzo? He looked like he didn’t give a damn

      • Hey Fortis. Yeah I watched it.

        MM would need severe bad luck and injury to not take his second World Riders Championship. And I wouldn’t wish that on anyone. So yes, all things being equal, MM has got it stitched up. If not, it’d be the biggest turn around and lead loss in the sports history.

        Dani Pedrosa doesn’t have what it takes to do that, but has the bike. Jorge once did have that fury, that mentality, but has totally dropped the ball this whole season (except Mugello). Vale has the mind, but doesn’t have the bike.

        Perhaps we should brace for a Loeb, Rossi, Schumacher like run if titles.

        • Dani missed his opportunity in 2012 when the team left the bleeding tyre warmers on his bike, which caused him start at the back and then got punted off by Bautista at the first corner.

          It would need a turn around of biblical proportions for that to happen. He did almost do something similar himself in Moto2. He was trailing Bradl by I think it was a 100pts and he just went on a streak like he’s on now, had it not been for his crash (I think it was Malaysia) he would’ve definitely won the title.

          Vale has gotten into Lorenzo’s head this season. His paymasters looked really pissed after he crossed the line.

          But you’re right, we could be in for that type of dominance, because that Honda has no weakness at all.

    • …and I’m certain that Senna and Prost looked like ‘sugar-sweet stars of today’ when compared to Fangio and Moss. Everything’s relative and we tend to look at the past with rose-tinted glasses. I bet you that in 10-20 years’ time, we will be describing Alonso and Hamilton as ‘giants of the sport’ and the newbies of 2030s as ‘sugar-sweeties’.
      Sport is just like music and other things. For me, nothing will beat 70s rock and 80s heavy metal. And I can see that comaprison with One Direction or Dimension, whatever they’re called. But look at Take That, they’re respected nowadays!

      • “But look at Take That, they’re respected nowadays!”

        I was agreeing… Until you said that. You stretched it too far.

        😉

      • … and just like 70’s rock and 80’s metal, most of it is overated (and that also goes for the beatles too), and we forget how much dross and crap their was and just remember the good stuff.

  2. Feel for the green guys. I think its fair to say that Tony didn’t exactly give them a good start to the season.

    I’m now glad he didn’t get Lotus, even though I was hoping he would at the time.

    • It’s a strange one.. Fernandes has a good cash-flow from AirAsia, as we can see (how many hundreds of millions has been spent on Caterham F1 and QPR?), now moving into the Indian sub-continent after Kingfisher (Mallya) failed.

      Lotus desperately need cash.. even Genii, a financial company, can’t afford to buy Lotus back from DRB-Hicom, and keep the F1 going at the same time. Fernandes possibly could have, and with Malaysian backing (instead, Petronas went to Mercedes) could have built it all back up into something working again, and maybe got some new cars rolling out (he seems to be positive on the Caterham cars aspect, if not the F1 team).

      As it is, Lotus I’m not even sure will survive much longer, and the name is only there in F1 until something/someone better comes along to takeover the team from Genii. Fernandes could have had West Ham, Olympic Stadium, Lotus cars and F1, Air Asia all over Asia… now that’s a business empire with possibilities.

  3. Hey hey hey! The Spanish Samurai is back with his wisdom! So is the mistake having gone to McLaren with Hamilton or gone to Ferrari and now heading back to McLaren 😛

    • “gone to Ferrari and now heading back to McLaren”

      My thoughts exactly.. 🙂 Especially the “can also undertake great tasks”; sounds like a good description of the McLaren Honda operation.

    • Or he wants Massa back?
      Or Domenicali?

      The man sure knows how to keep us speculating!

  4. This weekends race will be interesting. Hamilton on home turf, has to win right?, showers predicted and what happens if Rosberg wins? Will he get booed? If it rains will RBR’s aero package allow them to challenge again? How many minutes running will Vettels car last before something breaks?

    Agree with the Judge, I think a collision is inevitable. Nico is driving more like Lewis now, the start in Canada showed that, where he didn’t give Lewis an inch. That was a Hamilton move all over. Perhaps he’s learnt after the Bahrain Chop ! Jenson didn’t really learn, he was always too weedy with Lewis, dive out of the way etc. Some drivers just stick their cars in there and let others move. It works most of the time, I don’t think Nico would jump out of the way again. A collision would be great for the drama of F1 though, and as they’re both in an exclusive little Merc battle it’d not harm too much. Bernie would love it !

    It’ll take something to beat the drama of last year though. Tyres exploding, Vettel retiring to the sporting cheers of the Brits, Alonso doing a great job of avoiding some debris, Hamiltons tyre exploding, messages to drivers to stay off the kerbs and…. Nico Rosberg winning.

    • You’re ignoring the Canadian collision with Button “I didn’t see him”.

      As far as Rosberg, also not the first time he’s run folks off the circuit, and well prior to having Lewis as a a teammate. In fact, if memory serves correctly, it was his spectacularly defensive driving in Bahrain 2012 that led to the current regs about overtaking and the definition of “being alongside”.

      Still, Lewis is faster. Doesn’t mean he’s going to win though…. 🙂

      • Hmm I’m not so sure about JB vs LH in Canada. It’s a wet track, at any kind of speed you can’t see anything out of those mirrors. Whilst Jenson might have known he was somewhere near him, I genuinely don’t think he would have driven up there if he knew Lewis was alongside him, Jenson isn’t like that and I doubt he’ll change.

        RE: Bahrain. Nico was very defensive but the incident you refer to was Lewis I think getting his front wing inside Rosberg’s rear wheel – something Nico had successfully defended previously. As Lewis had his wing inside him he went off track and passed. Again, I’m not sure Nico would have cut across if he’d know Lewis had managed to get his front wing there.

      • “it was his spectacularly defensive driving in Bahrain 2012 that led to the current regs about overtaking and the definition of “being alongside”.”

        Wasn’t this Schumacher who was holding up Hamilton then, with Ross Brawn needing to intervene on the radio?

        • No, the rules were changed/clarified after Nico was overly aggressive on Lewis and Alonso in Bahrain. This rule then caught Seb out at Monza where he pushed Alonso off the track.

        • I think that the Schumacher incident was in Monza. It’s been a busy day so I haven’t gone looking, but I have a strong memory that LH wasn’t the only driver to enjoy Rosberg’s spirited defending in Bahrain, but that FA too got a taste of Silver that day. I’ll poke about and see if I can find something more reliable than my memory, LOL.

          • I also remember Monza, via a hazy recollection, but I just can’t picture in which turns the Schumacher aggressive defending was happening..

        • @landroni as it turns out we are both correct. From the 2012 regs:

          20.3 More than one change of direction to defend a position is 
          not permitted. 
          Any driver moving back towards the racing line, 
          having earlier defended his position off‐line, should leave at least  one car width between his own car and the edge of the track on the approach to the corner. 
          20.4 Manoeuvres liable to hinder other drivers, such as deliberate crowding of a car beyond the edge of the track or any other abnormal change of direction, are not permitted. 
          20.5  As soon as a car is caught by another car

          and from the 2013 regs

          20.3 More than one change of direction to defend a position is not permitted. Any driver moving
          back towards the racing line, having earlier defended his position off-line, should leave at least one car width between his own car and the edge of the track on the approach to the corner.
          20.4 Any driver defending his position on a straight, and before any braking area, may use the full width of the track during his first move, provided no significant portion of the car attempting
          to pass is alongside his. Whilst defending in this way the driver may not leave the track without justifiable reason.
          For the avoidance of doubt, if any part of the front wing of the car attempting to pass is alongside the rear wheel of the car in front this will be deemed to be a ‘significant portion’.

          20.5 Manoeuvres liable to hinder other drivers, such as deliberate crowding of a car beyond the
          edge of the track or any other abnormal change of direction, are not permitted.

          So the one move was added in response to Schumacher’s driving in 2011 Monza and the full width and alongside was added in response to Rosberg and Bahrain, IIRC there was quite the spirited debate as to whether Alonso and Hamilton gained an advantage or whether Rosberg was hindering, LOL. It was quite the epic display of stewarding.

    • Hamilton and Rosberg crash, Hamilton bites Rosberg on shoulder for all the world to see.

      • Hope his shots are up to date, could turn septic quickly……;-)

    • As a big Hamilton fan, I think Silverstone is crucially important, not just points wise, but physchologically. Its home turf and a true circuit, if Nico keeps him on the back foot here, I think he’ll struggle to do anything about it as Nico will have a lot of support in his home GP, and it may get a bit landslide-tastic. However, if Lewis can win here, carry momentum into Germany, he’s then got Hungary which he seems to love, so there could be hope of heading into the break with more balanced playing field for a wicked final part of the season!

      • Well, if there will be rain in the weekend as is predicted, then I can’t see Rosberg outperforming Lewis. Rosberg is metronomic and can outqualify or outrace Lewis on occasion. However, when the weather or some other incident throws a spanner in the works, he finds it difficult to deal with it. Having said that, if Lewis cocks it up as he did in Austria, or is unlucky as last year, Rosberg will in no doubt capitalise on this.
        As a Hamilton and F1 fan, I really hope that Lewis turns this around and we go to to the summer break with a more even view at the top, don’t want another repeat of the sleep-fest that was the Schuey years and the Vettel’s ’11 and ’13.

        • Interesting that you think rain will suit Lewis. One of the things that has really stood out for me this season is that when it rains, first lap out Rosberg is normally far far quicker than Lewis. It’s like Nico has a better feel for grip, but Lewis can and does learn where he can push and within a few laps he’s faster than Nico.

          That completely goes against all the stuff that people write about the two drivers – one seat of pants (Lewis) and one learns over time how to be fast (Rosberg). Look back at wet sessions this season though and that’s the pattern !

          A wet dry wet race for example, I’d be thinking Nico might be the man. A solid wet race – Lewis.

      • I think Rosberg has such a big lead in the championship that he will only need to take an aggressive style of driving against Hamilton. He must be trying to be as easy as possible on the powertrains and gearboxes from now on, so they last the season. He can afford to let Hamilton make the mistakes. Plus Rosberg must be due a DNF and that must play on his mind.

        • “He must be trying to be as easy as possible on the powertrains and gearboxes from now on”

          An engine change carries a 10 place grid penalty, which when viewed in light of M-B’s dominance, and what Hamilton did in Austria, may cost Rosberg a win but would likely get him second place. He loses 7 points – that’s all.

    • It would be nice to see Hamilton avenge his loss of the race last year.. but if not, then that 2013 race could serve as a prelude to the 2014 title fight.

    • You know, this thumps up feature is quite confusing in posts like this. I wanted to click that as a positive mark that you mention/remember his passing, but of course it can also be perceived in a negative light.

  5. “TJ13 has received a report of unusual and substantial Caterham F1 truck sightings on a number of occasions during the past two weeks. These have been very early in the morning (4 truck convoy pre 6am Wednesday last)) on the town roads of Guilford and Woking…”

    “It is difficult not to suspect Mansoor Ijaz may have his sticky fingers somewhere in this pie… if only because of the car crash publicity so far……”

    Hmm, I’m confused. What does McLaren have to do with Ijaz? Is Caterham slowly becoming McLaren B, or am I reading this wrongly?

    • …There’s a Smorgasboard of information flying around about Caterham…. the comment about Mansoor Ijaz was based upon Adam Cooper’s latest musings on a consortium…..

      Was speaking to someone from Caterham this weekend – they have no idea what is happening – just that Cyril appears to have buggered off.

      • “was based upon Adam Cooper’s latest musings”

        If the phrases “it is believed” or “it is understood” didn’t exist in the English language, Cooper wouldn’t have anything to write about.

      • Well, if AC’s speculation is true, we would know one thing: They are either stark raving mad or know nothing about F1, else the Renaults would be the first they scratch off their shopping list. In fact I’d reel that one out in a press release first thing if I were part of whoever bought the sorry remnants of that team, just before telling the world that the cars will for the rest of the seaon race with a Burqa. You just have to hide that face…

        • @hippo

          Not so sure. Renault should never be discounted (for 2015). Yes they really underestimated the requirements for this year, as did Ferrari. Reports from a ‘source’, says that their 2015 parts are already under test. As for Caterham, it’s a compact team with a new factory and modern facilities. They have a contract with TMG Köln to use the 60% wind tunnel and data facilities, which are supposed to be the best available. Also a deal with DELL for advanced computing technology, and some kind of technology deal with GE. Their problem seems to be that they have never had an innovative design team. Remember Kobayashi saying earlier this year, that he was shocked that the car was so conservative in its design. That was the exact sentiment that was put forward in their first year, so the culture still remains. A recipe for back of the grid status. If the purchase price is right, then with a few changes in all departments, I could see Caterham making a jump to mid grid. Williams then and now – new designer, new tech boss and better process – not just the Merc PU.

          • @ Iain

            totally agree about Renault

            however – Ferrari and Mercedes will also be working on 2015 too

            so I think we might still see the status quo of 2014 unless Honda come up with something special …..

          • @manky

            Agreed about Ferrari and Mercedes. But I think that things will be close in 2015. There is a fixed fuel flow, so there is a theoretical maximum output from the ICE. The gains, actually the bit missing from Renault and Ferrari, is primarily, energy from the MGU H. Mercedes seem to be able to generate more than everybody else. Remember that MGU-H energy being fed directly to the MGU-K is not restricted.

  6. This from James Allen – “Formula E will have a music soundtrack at each race, sounds for start, crashes, fan boost deployments etc”

    What a joke.

    • the biggest joke is –

      that dead horse from Maranello that’s been around for too many years

    • Cav goes to the beach:

      “Sand in my shoes, never ending sun in my eyes, nothing to sit on but a ‘beach chair’, the girls aren’t wearing enough clothes and all there is to drink are either mojitos or rum cocktails. You can’t even drink the ocean because it’s all salty… What a joke!!”

  7. There is a mistake in the ‘Silverstone and Tyres’ comment above. Sebastian Vettel didn’t win the race last year as he didn’t even finish. Rosberg won from Webber and Alonso.

  8. 5g lateral hahaha. Current cars are happy to corner at 3.5 max. Merc and RB that is, other not even that much. Why do you think tires aren’t working on half the tracks. It’s because there’s literally no stress put into them.

  9. Also, mclaren ran all pirelli recommended parameters last year in silverstone and still got their tires popped twice. Camber and pressure settings were pirellis excuse as to why their sub-optimal rubber was exploding left, right and center.
    Facts not the biggest friend of tj13 sometimes.

    • @ Juzh

      strange that Gary Anderson who actually went and looked at the offending kerbs – UNLIKE YOU – came to a different opinion

      but then what does he know ?

      it’s not like he’s ever designed an F1 car ……

      • Offending kerbs? You mean the same kerbs in place since 2010 when cars were running double deckers and cornered flat trough copse (RB6)? Why weren’t tires exploding then? I’ll tell you why. Because bridgestone knew how to make a proper f1 tire, unlike pirelli, who doesn’t.
        And yes, anderson is rambling twat and that’s it. For every once he gets it right, he completely misses 10 other times. He might know how to actually design a car, but there’s a reason why every team dropped him. This is the same guy who actually said RB should change their high df/slow top end approach because vettel set fastest lap in abu dhabi 2012 on a compromised setup. He conveniently forgot about his least used soft tires on the car.

        • ” You mean the same kerbs in place since 2010 when cars were running double deckers and cornered flat trough copse (RB6)? Why weren’t tires exploding then? ”

          yes the same kerbs

          but different racing lines – as you pointed out – because of the high downforce levels drivers weren’t cutting the corners because they had no need to.

          The fact is only some drivers suffered tyre problems

          Why ?

          Because they were cutting the corners excessively – the one’s that didn’t do so had no problems.

          I don’t remember Nico or Mark or Fred having tyres exploding on them ……

          And to say that Pirelli don’t know how to make ” proper tyres ” – shows your ignorance.

          They did what was asked of them – and then got vilified for doing so.

          And please remind me – in the 1950’s – 1960’s – 1970’s – 1980’s and 1990’s – where were Bridgestone with their ” proper tyres ” ?

          I’ll tell you – no fucking where – FACT !

          • Different lines? I suggest you go watch the race again. They were taking exactly the same lines back then as they do now. Some cars took slightly different ones trough quali, but the race… all the same. In 2012 cars had no downforce and were hopping all kerbs as well. Tires were fine. Hint: kevlar belt.
            Pirelli were asked to bring performance degrading tires, not exploding tires. Degrading does not equal exploding.
            We know fred’s tires were about to pop just as he drove into the pits, hence didn’t suffer as much. He said that himself. Vettel had cuts forming as well but got lucky as well to pit just in time.
            Pirelli can’t hold a candle to bridgestone on F1 tire performance no matter how you spin it. Yes, they can make a hard tire, but that tire will have zero performance in it. You could run bridgestones for at least half the race on maximum attack.
            I for one think tires were fine in 2011. Then they went overboard.

        • @ Juzh

          ” And yes, anderson is rambling twat and that’s it ”

          Would you kindly remind us how many F1 cars YOU have designed …… ?

          • What does designing cars have to do with this anyway? I don’t need to be a writer to know a book sucks. Same as I don’t need to be an F1 designer to know anderson is full shit more often than not. I’m done on this topic.

  10. Yes, just going to say it here first. If it’s a dry Quali, look for Hamilton to save a set of mediums in Q2 and then try and set a banker that’s good for pole first run Q3. He tried it in Austria and it would’ve worked except he lost it in T8 on that run.

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