Daily #F1 News and Comment: Thursday 17th July 2014

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Previously on TJ13:

#F1 Circuit Profile – 2014: Germany, Hockenheim, Round 10

The Art of #F1: Lewis Hamilton – A Reflection


OTD Lite – 1995 – Juan Manuel Fangio – Il Maestro

Luciano Burti’s miraculous escape

FIFA ‘wants to ban’ Rosberg’s world cup helmet (GMM)

Fans enjoyed ‘kindergarten’ complaining – Vettel (GMM)

Caterham restructuring

Charlie SAYS…..

Mercedes say F*&k it to FRIC

Anything you can do…..

Reliability penalties loom


OTD Lite – 1995 – Juan Manuel Fangio – Il Maestro

On this day, nearly two decades ago, arguably the greatest driver of all time passed away at the age of 84. Most people know that he won five World Titles – a record that was beaten by Michael Schumacher in 2003 – but he also won 24 Grand Prix from just 51 race starts.

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Stirling Moss: “He was not only the greatest racing driver who ever lived but also a great man, he was a great artist of driving. He taught me how to live, how to behave, how to care about those around us. He was essentially such a good human being, mature, modest, quietly spoken and kind, always prepared to help the younger drivers.” Yet in the car he proved remorseless when switching teams, and whilst a humble human being out of the car, he had a killer instinct behind the wheel, a trait of all winners.

His greatest victory was at the 1957 German GP when he recovered a 50 second deficit to beat the Ferraris over the last seven laps, as he recalled: That day I had everything turned on and firing on all cylinders, I was ready to do anything. When it was all over, I was convinced that I would never be able to drive like that again, never. I had reached my final limit of concentration, and will to win.”

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Luciano Burti’s miraculous escape

Earlier this year, as the world’s media focused on Imola on the anniversaries of Roland Ratzenberger’s and Ayrton Senna’s death, the general message emanating from the governing body, the teams and drivers of Formula One was that the legacy of the darkest weekend in F1 history was that there had been no fatalities in F1 since that day.

Of course this statistic is commendable and research and development continue apace to ensure that safety is never taken for granted. Yet it goes without saying that any human being traveling at considerable speed is at risk if the circumstance happen to change.

For Senna being killed at Tamburello, we had Alboreto, Piquet and Berger surviving huge accidents. Ratzenberger was killed in a carbon fibre car whilst Gilles Villeneuve survived in an aluminum car in 1980 colliding with the same stretch of concrete wall fourteen years apart.

Robert Kubica survived driving head on into a wall and was racing within days and Mark Webber in Valencia and ,often forgotten, Nico Rosberg in Abu Dhabi both launched spectacularly over other vehicles as we held our collective breaths.

Even an obscure event like Barrichello’s Brawn losing a spring that just happened to knock Massa unconscious was more the hand of fate than any inherent design brief by the safety commission.

Another example of the good fortune that accompanies many huge accidents is Luciano Burti at Spa in 2001 which bore many similarities to the crash that Schumacher had at the 1999 British Grand Prix, except Schumi broke his legs.  If you’re new to the sport you may have missed this accident, but in 2001, Burti in his Prost Grand Prix car was racing Eddie Irvine at Spa in the opening laps. He got a good run at him on the approach to Blanchimont and drew alongside before the turn in point; but was unsighted as the Irishman’s Jaguar turned across him.

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frenteAt a point of the track that these V10 cars would have been approaching 200mph, the accident was swift and he hurtled into the tyre wall at practically undiminished speed. The rescue took some time and Irvine was frantic trying to help the marshalls free the Brazilian from the car. For some time mixed messages were being broadcast within the pits and it was with relief that he was air-lifted to hospital alive.

Burti has this week had his helmet from that day thirteen years ago returned to him. He was moved to tears as the savagery of the impact is hard not to miss. “But for the grace of God…”, Burti uttered.

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FIFA ‘wants to ban’ Rosberg’s world cup helmet (GMM)

FIFA, the governing body of world football, “wants to ban” Nico Rosberg’s special helmet livery for the German grand prix.

Earlier this week, delighted with the national team’s world cup victory in Brazil, Mercedes driver Rosberg announced he will wear a “special edition helmet” this weekend in Hockenheim.

The 29-year-old German revealed on social media that the livery includes an image of “the FIFA trophy”.

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But according to the major German daily Bild-Zeitung, FIFA “wants to ban” Rosberg from wearing it. Indeed, in its public guidelines, FIFA warns that it vigorously protects the ‘official marks’ of the world cup, including the image of the famous golden trophy.

“Any unauthorised use of the official marks not only undermines the integrity of the FIFA world cup and its marketing programme,” said FIFA, “but also puts the interests of the worldwide football community at stake.”

If FIFA were banning this change to Rosberg’s helmet on the grounds that F1 drivers change their helmet designs too frequently…….. many would applaud.

However, all this is rather silly, though it is not insignificant that both FIFA and the Formula 1 are run by tin pot dictators who will sell their soul’s to the highest bidder.

As TJ13 contributor, Somers observed today, “apparently the cup on a helmet hurts their [FIFA} brand but slave labour and deaths in Quatar don’t…”.

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Fans enjoyed ‘kindergarten’ complaining – Vettel (GMM)

World champion Sebastian Vettel has dismissed Niki Lauda’s criticism in the wake of the British grand prix. Having heard his excitable radio calls about Fernando Alonso’s driving during their thrilling Silverstone duel, Mercedes chairman Lauda denounced Vettel for “screaming like a small, startled child”.

“I don’t really know what he said exactly,” Vettel told the Spanish sports newspaper AS, “but I think that if you look at the fight Fernando and I had, it’s not important. I was told that Alonso was complaining so I thought I should do the same. Maybe it was a bit like kindergarten and so I can understand what Niki didn’t like, but I think that for the fans it was quite interesting,” he smiled.

In reality, Vettel has bigger problems than Lauda or Alonso, and its name is Daniel Ricciardo. “He’s doing a great job, no doubt,” agreed the reigning quadruple world champion, referring to his new Red Bull teammate, adding “it’s good to see that there is fresh blood in formula one. I’m happy for him. He’s having a very, very good start to the season.”

Elsewhere, in an interview for Britain’s Telegraph, Vettel admitted that he is getting his “a**e kicked” by the Australian so far. But he plays down any comparison of his struggles with those of Kimi Raikkonen, the 2007 world champion who is failing to give Fernando Alonso a hard time at Ferrari in 2014.

“I don’t really know what kind of problems Kimi is having,” the German told AS, “but I think he is one of the most naturally talented drivers on the grid. He has demonstrated his talents on gravel and ice in rallying.” Vettel therefore implies that his and Raikkonen’s problems are simply in adapting to the radically different cars. “It not just my driving style,” he said, “I’ve had many reliability problems but also in terms of speed, I’m still far from where I want to be. I need to work on myself and get over it, and I think I can,” Vettel added.

TJ13 comment: Somewhere in the Fatherland, a large ‘Jabba the Hut’ like creature is getting through the haze of World Cup celebrations and opening his eyelids to read further attacks on the beloved lad Sebastian.

Contrary to what Vettel thinks or believes, the crowd did not enjoy either his or Alonso’s bleating as they battled at Silverstone – they enjoyed the tactics of driving on the edge. They would have heard nothing because it would not have been transmitted over the event speakers, but even on TV these are meant to be ‘men’ fighting for position.

Any historic race that had drivers pushing the limits is remembered for the fight not the squabble and it’s fascinating that todays generation of drivers uses the medium of car to pit radio knowing it goes beyond the team or Charlie’s attention but also into the wider world.

If Lauda mocks and attacks the childishness of the radio transmission, we can only begin to imagine what someone like James Hunt would have said to these ‘athletes’.

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Caterham restructuring

There is a misnomer around this week, that the grim reaper walked into Leafield over the past couple of days and sacked between 30-50 people (depending who is writing the story). What actually happened was that the team employed a number of contractors as well as employees, and as part of (and prior to the announcement of) the sale process, notice of cessation of employment was given to a number of contracting staff who have since been working a notice period.

Colin Kolles has implemented further cuts in the employed staff since arriving on the scene around two weeks ago..

Caterham released this stamement today.

“Following the first steps of restructuring, Caterham F1 Team has confirmed today that a number of new appointments have been made.

Christijan Albers is now Team Principal, supported by Manfredi Ravetto, General Manager and Deputy Team Principal. Simon Shinkins has also joined the team as COO, as well as Miodrag Kotur who is now Team Manager. Michael Willmer is the team’s new Director of Legal Affairs and Gianluca Pisanello is promoted to Head of Trackside Engineering. Finally, John Iley is now the team’s Technical Director, leading the work being done to improve the 2014 car and the 2015 new car project.

The team has also confirmed that it has parted company with a number of employees. This is a necessary step taken by the new owners of Caterham F1 Team whose priority is the future of the team.

No further comment will be made at this time”.

Charlie SAYS…..

Today is the penultimate article in the TJ13 series which has sought to bring to F1 fans the mind of FIA Formula One Race Director, Safety Delegate, Permanent Starter and head of the F1 Technical Department.

Charlie Whiting was recently asked “what keeps you working with Bernie? – Bernie Ecclestone”.  Whiting replied, “Well, because he’s such an inspiration really. Working with him is enlightening to say the least. He comes out with new things all the time and some things that you think are a little bit crazy actually more often than not turn out to be absolutely spot-on”.

When pressed to give an example, Charlie fumbled a little, “Given time, I could probably think of lots of examples.” He eventually settling on, “Articulated lorry trucks.

Who on earth would have ever thought that you would need a big truck. In the late ’60s and early ’70s everyone had small trucks, but one day Bernie decided he wanted an artic’ and everyone said; ‘He’s mad, what does he need that for?!’ Now they bring 40 of them. What Bernie did, others followed. That’s a relatively poor example… I can’t think of any more recent ones, but he’s not often wrong”.

It appears there may have been a small voice speaking in Charlie’s head as he quickly adds conclusively, “He has a great sense of humour, too.”

Charlie is one of the Brabham trio, which included Max Moseley and Bernie Ecclestone. As president of the FIA, Max persuaded the association to sell Bernie the commercial rights for what amounts to between $2-3m a year over a 99 year period.

As technical delegate, Charlie from time to time appears to be acting in rather strange ways – these have become more frequent recently – and it’s no secret Bernie has his ear and occasionally looks to Charlie to cash in the odd ‘insurance policy’ or two. 😉

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Mercedes say F*&k it to FRIC

The hand of the commercial rights holder appears to have left finger prints all over the rather grubby and incoherent FRIC affair announced by Charlie Whiting last week.

Slow down the Mercedes car – believed to have been developing their FRIC system for longer than others – and for the casual corporate prawn sandwich once a year F1 watcher may see closer racing between the teams..

Yes, FRIC suspension systems are complex and are expensive, however, the manner by which Charlie Whiting has attempted to regulate against FRIC mid-season is laughable.

Toto Wolff responds as best he can to a technical directive out of the blue. “It makes no sense to complain,” he told AMuS. Whether it (banning Fric) makes sense during the season is a moot point. I have my personal opinion, but it doesn’t matter.

We need to analyse all of the data very carefully in order to be best prepared for the change.”

For the lesser advanced systems, the FRIC suspension has been cited as giving a lap performance improvement of around 2-3 10ths of a second. Otmar Szafnauer, Chief Operating Officer of the Sahara Force India team, said that following extensive testing of their FRIC system at Silverstone, he believed it could offer up to half a second improvement in lap time.

For Mercedes it may be greater again. Wolff is defiant. “Everyone has said that a Fric ban will hurt us most, but we want to prove that is not the case.”

Mercedes appeared to perform tests at Silverstone without their FRIC syspension and Nico Rosberg comments, “The difference between ‘with Fric’ and ‘without Fric’ is not so great. For sure you notice it, but other teams have also been using it this season. I don’t even want to think about it too much”.

Rosberg lays down the gauntlet to the competition as he concludes, “I have the fastest car and I want to win at Hockenheim,”

Taki Inoue in his own inimitable manner makes his views clear on the matter as he tweets, “FRIC ban makes any difference in F1? Presumably, nothing will be changed. The best is always best and the shit is always shit! This is F1 !!”

Anything you can do…..

On more than one occasion, during the pre-race frivolities, Nico Rosberg has addressed the fans at the circuit in the local language. Lewis looked uncomfortable (as is normative when you don’t understand something) in Canada as he looked on whilst Rosberg received the applause of the crowd.

Rosberg of course speaks fluent German, English, French, Italian and is studying Spanish, though his Finnish at present is limited.

It appears Lewis believes being multi-lingual is admirable, and he may be having lessons in German because he tweeted this morning, “Hockenheim ist das Heimrennen für Mercedes-Benz und deshalb für das Team und auch für mich wichtig”. #GermanGP #TeamLH”.

That, or either Lewis is secretly German and we just didn’t know it. 😉

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Reliability penalties loom

Approaching the half way point of this F1 season, here is the state of play on which drivers have used how many components of their power trains.

Each power unit has six different components: the internal combustion engine (ICE), the Motor Generator Unit-Kinetic (MGU-K), the Motor Generator Unit-Heat (MGU-H), the energy store (ES), turbocharger (TC) and control electronics (CE).

Each driver is allocated five of each per season.

Driver Car Engine ICE TC MGU-K MGU-H ES CE
Sebastian Vettel Red Bull Renault 4 4 3 4 2 4
Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull Renault 3 3 3 3 2 2
Lewis Hamilton Mercedes Mercedes 3 3 3 3 3 3
Nico Rosberg Mercedes Mercedes 3 3 3 3 3 3
Fernando Alonso Ferrari Ferrari 3 3 3 3 3 4
Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari Ferrari 3 3 3 4 3 3
Romain Grosjean Lotus Renault 3 4 3 3 2 3
Pastor Maldonado Lotus Renault 4 4 4 4 2 3
Jenson Button McLaren Mercedes 3 3 3 3 2 2
Kevin Magnussen McLaren Mercedes 3 3 3 3 2 2
Nico Hulkenberg Force India Mercedes 3 3 3 3 2 2
Sergio Perez Force India Mercedes 3 3 3 3 2 2
Adrian Sutil Sauber Ferrari 3 3 3 3 3 3
Esteban Gutierrez Sauber Ferrari 3 3 3 3 3 3
Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso Renault 4 4 4 3 3 4
Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso Renault 5 4 5 3 2 2
Felipe Massa Williams Mercedes 3 3 3 3 2 3
Valtteri Bottas Williams Mercedes 3 3 3 3 2 2
Jules Bianchi Marussia Ferrari 4 4 3 4 2 3
Max Chilton Marussia Ferrari 4 4 4 4 3 4
Kamui Kobayashi Caterham Renault 3 3 3 3 3 4
Marcus Ericsson Caterham Renault 3 3 3 3 2 4

We began the year with wild predictions that half the field would not finish races, which of course didn’t happen. However, we are about to see grid penalties for drivers as they exceed their allowed quota’s.

Drovers will receive a ten-place grid penalty the first time they use a sixth power unit component. For the other components when they reach the tally of six, a further five-place grid penalty will be awarded..This pattern repeats for a seventh power unit component and so on.

If the drivers qualify too low in the order to receive their full grid slot drop, the balance will carry over for one more race.

Reliability is unrecognisable in the modern F1 era when compared to that of the 1980’s. This of course makes it harder for the modern smaller teams to ‘have a good day’ at other’s expense (cf Johnnie Herbert).

In 1984 across the whole season, a mere 38% of starters finished the races.

Next year – so long as there are less than 21 races, the drivers will only have 4 power units at their disposal. Charlie Whiting doesn’t believe this is too draconian.

“The first thing we need to remember is that four engines was always the goal. There was always going to be four engines per driver per season. That was the original intention and the five engines was a concession for the first year. There was never any doubt it was going to be four engines. It’s not a draconian change from five down to four. It’s just following the original intention.

Secondly, yes, some drivers are in a bit of trouble and will start to incur penalties, probably two thirds of the way through the season. It’s a shame, we don’t want to see this any more than anyone else does but those who appear to be better prepared for the start of the season are in good shape. That’s just the way it goes, unfortunately. The control electronics has been a surprise but I’m sure the second year will be a whole different matter”.

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71 responses to “Daily #F1 News and Comment: Thursday 17th July 2014

  1. “TJ13 comment: Somewhere in the Fatherland, a large ‘Jabba the Hut’ like creature is getting through the haze of World Cup celebrations and opening his eyelids to read further attacks on the beloved lad Sebastian.”

    Oh no you didn’t judge? Why are trying to steer up trouble?…..😄😃

  2. Maybe I’m seeing this wrong, but has Rosberg put the latin number 6 (i.e. VI) on teh side of his helmet instead of 4 (i.e. IV) ?

  3. Judge

    What I found interesting was on the sky f1 show, they showed Nico’s response to the overtake, he was watching it on the big screen, his first comment was how is the Renault quicker than the Ferrari in straight line, followed by vettel can’t overtake like that, he went well off the track. There was no mallace in his words or axe to grind, they just happen to catch him watching it after he retired, and got one of those rare genuine unguarded comments.

      • genuinely amazed at the (relative) pace of the RB10…
        Though if Alonso is to believed, the Ferrari was hampered by various bits not working as they should.

        • Several bits not working as they should is what an RB10 starts the race like, mainly the loud bit in the back. I think that fight showed pretty well where the RB takes the time from. That think can even smoke a Merc through the corners, they just blast by on the straights again.
          I think the RB10 emphasizes the genius of Newey and his design gang more than all the dominant cars.

          • Think you’re looking through red(bull) tinted glasses, the Renault engine certainly a match for the Ferrari. Suppose what we ultimately had was the faster Ferrari driver battling the slower of RB drivers, so we know that car had a bit of spare pace.

          • I reckon the Renault is even slower than the Ferrari.. at Austria I did a ‘grid correction’ of 0.75 for Ferrari and 1 second for Renault. Not sure if I can post it here? Managed to post it on F1F as ‘code’ (so it didn’t look like gobbledegook).

      • Judge, that small glimpse of a genuine response was worth a 100 press conferences, why do the teams PR people think this isn’t the case. Just like when the record them before the podium.

        I think they should put all the drivers in a room with a big screen, show the race highlights, and record the conversation, bet it’d be brilliant, maybe throw in a free beer for those that collided that race.

  4. Oh my……jabba the hut?

    There will either be stoney silence or a.massive can of woop ass being shook as we speak.

    On a serious note, I thought Seb came across quite well in the article. I wouldn’t be his biggest fan (usual reasons, the finger, good car so no real baseline to compare, being too damn good for 4 years in a row – 2 of which he was exceptional) but I think he’s reacting pretty well all things considered.

    Good luck to him in his moment of adversity. We will really find out what he is made of now.

    And so will he.

    • I think I’ll go with the stony silence regarding that introductory part of the article. Obviously Sebastian isn’t the only one who has lost his edge a bit this season. The once sharp-tongued gavel wielder can’t quite rise above the level of puerile insults. It’s a sad thing to see such a decline.

      As for the comment itself, I’m with Colin. I think he handles the pressure quite well and that’s what many people don’t like. They wanted to see him throw his toys out of the pram publicly and instead he’s one of the few with enough balls to congratulate his team-mate on a job well done and admit that his driving is just not (yet) up to what he thinks he’s capable off. Isn’t that the sort of behavior we all demand of them?

      As for the childish bickering. I always laugh when I hear people say that people like hunt would never have done that. Oh didn’t they? How do you know. They didn’t have any team-radio, so nobody knows what sort of ripe language was used in hard-fought duels. The live broadcast of team-radio is only a recent development. We never got to know what the likes of Senna, Schumacher or Montoya cried into their microphones. I would bet you a load of currency that Senna didn’t react too maturely when Irvine unlapped himself in Suzuka.

      So I would take this article for what it is – an out-of-things-to-say editor who hoped to spark a fight and is left standing with his handbag on the schoolyard without a willing opponent.

    • Agreed on both counts.

      Though I prefer to think of the large one as a Kraken…
      Below the thunders of the upper deep;
      Far far beneath in the abysmal sea,
      His ancient, dreamless, uninvaded sleep
      The Kraken sleepeth…

      – and everyone knows you don’t disturb a sleeping Kraken.

  5. Lol. The next race post LH’s ‘Nico not German’ bullshit and Nico has the perfect response… “Not Gernan eh? Take a look at my helmet.”

    😉 very cool.

  6. Interesting to see the picture of Fangio sliding his car. I thought only average , over-rated drivers like Villeneuve did that.

    • ROFL.

      If your still sore with your lack of ability to counter my veiws yesterday, time and time again, I can help you to build a bridge if you like… That way you can get over it.

      😉

    • No there was a time when tyres were skinny and four wheel drifts the norm. We have got used to overtyred cars cornering with staggering G-force. When they give up the struggle for grip the speeds are so high the only result is a spin or accident.
      Back in the day the art of driving was to have the car balanced at the limit – and it was lovely to watch. It was artistry.

      • Indeed, I wonder if the turning point was the switch from bias-ply to radials, and the smaller slip angles required for peak grip from radials. I always thought that helped Ferrari in ’79, given their lack of effective GE until ’81/’82, combined with some engine grunt..

  7. Nice to see FIFA have their priorities in order as usual.
    People are dying building stadiums for a world cup that might never happen but they’re spending their time making sure a sports star doesn’t wear a picture of a trophy on a helmet.
    The FIA are virtually monks compared to Sepp Blatter’s regime!

    • ….it’s stupid. The extended marketing and promotional benefits – possible merchandise sales – from Nico promoting the World Cup in Germany are beneficial.

      • True, although they’ve kept themselves in the lime light for a bit longer. Can’t help but feel maybe they’d go for some positive attention once in a while though!
        I can imagine FIFA issuing writs to all the fans in the stadiums with their replica world cups.

    • Absolute and utter joke. For all that’s worth I would expect FIA to complain for Rosberg promoting another sport, not FIFA!

      • Kia are the FIFA World Cup 2014 partners. It seems that they put pressure on FIFA to do something to protect their naming rights and IP interests. It is a big stretch of the imagination, but Mercedes are their competition.

  8. “Charlie Whiting was recently asked “what keeps you working with Bernie? – Bernie Ecclestone”. Whiting replied, “Well, because he’s such an inspiration really. [..]”

    I’m wondering if Charlie feels the same about Spanky..

  9. “Yes, FRIC suspension systems are complex and are expensive, however, the manner by which Charlie Whiting has attempted to regulate against FRIC mid-season is laughable.”

    My thoughts exactly. Autosport keeps paddling the “Costs, not conspiracy behind FRIC ban in F1” ( http://www.autosport.com/news/report.php/id/114922/ ), but that’s BS as far as I’m concerned. It’s the manner of how the ban was imposed that says it all..

      • Spot on, and that’s why you don’t hear Sky or BBC talk down the home grown drivers in the same way they are happy to do for foreign drivers. In fact wasn’t it only last season that Ted Kravitz annoyed Eric B, and was then ignored as a result?

        Moral of the story, media are biased, as they normally have an angle to stick to.

        • Don’t forget, the media make their money selling eyeballs, not reporting. Any narrative that draws viewers will be used to do so, regardless of relative “truth”. And FOM control access hence narratives for eyeballs. That’s why certain stories will only be heard outside “accredited” channels. It’s a pernicious problem found not only in F1, but other sports as well and politics/business etc. It was a conundrum not even Hunter Thompson could entirely solve, and he wrote eloquently about it in his book on the ’72 presidential campaign.

    • @landroni dit “but that’s BS as far as I’m concerned. It’s the manner of how the ban was imposed that says it all..”

      All he did was to send a letter to the teams suggesting that FRICS could be seen as illegal, and teams might be able to protest, and have their protest upheld. At no point did he ‘ban it’. It seems obvious that a team has asked for clarification on some aspect of FRICS and/or their own implementation, and this has set off the warning bells. If he hadn’t alerted the teams to what might be brewing, then he wouldn’t have been doing his job. A no protest agreement idea was suggested.

      p.s. Jo Bauer is the FIA Technical Delegate.

      • “At no point did he ‘ban it’.”

        Sure, but that’s the beauty of it. He managed to ban it mid-season, without actually banning it. He set the teams to scramble pointing fingers at each other, and crash-developing new suspensions and re-engineering their cars. As TJ13 proposed, this all stinks of Bernard’s sticky fingers from a mile off..

        Now _assume_ this was a genuine regulatory move, cost control et al. (Big ‘if’!) The reasonable way to approach would be to declare the system illegal at the end of the season for next year. At most, at the very most, the ban could come in force say in 3-4 GPs time, declaring the system illegal for all intents and purposes (NOT if there is no unanimous agreement among teams to allow it). But what they did was to impose to the teams a rather fundamental change to their cars with less than 10 days notice, amidst high uncertainty. This is politics, NOT regulating.

        I think Monisha put it loud and clear (and I suspect Sauber stands to benefit most from the ban):
        “”For me the whole discussion, it is a very wrong image that we are creating – which worries me,” she said.

        “We all entered with whatever [FRIC] device this year and in the middle of the year we decide it is not right.

        “I don’t know if it is frustration. It is a certain incompetence or capability of the sport to look stable and clear. It is the governing body that is responsible for the rules, and to monitor the rules and see if they are adhered to do or not.

        “It is not the governing body’s fault if we are developing our systems, so maybe we have to move more towards rules that don’t allow these kinds of things in the first place.””

  10. “That, or either Lewis is secretly German and we just didn’t know it.”

    Well, at least half of him might be since his mother is white British / English. Since English are descendants of Angles who were a Germanic tribe that emigrated to Britain in the 5th century, followed later on by Saxons and Jutes (also Germanic tribes), then you can see the link…and half of you have fallen asleep by now!

    • Speaking of which TJ13 best be careful questioning Lewis’ “true” nationality or else we’ll be invaded by a bunch of mad birthers demanding copies of his birth certificate and claiming he was really born in Albania. ;-P

    • There was a lolworthy immigration program on yesterday where multiple times people were referring to themselves as ‘whites’… if they can’t even be specific on ‘which white group’ they are a part of, then they must really see the world in ‘black & white’… not that that doesn’t stop the American census from being the same.

      I also like how they refer to themselves as natives etc. indigenous.. when they can’t even speak the indigenous languages of these isles, i.e. Gaelic/Celtic.

    • That is the cerebral comment of the week.

      A vulgar display of intelligence is always welcome in my world, its one of the things I like about coming here. As Michaelangelo stated in his 70s, “I am still learning”.

      I think we need a TJ13 library where contributors a can sit in silence in an oak pannelled room in lush leather chairs sipping brandy. The only sounds would be a repressed cough, on occasion, the quiet turning of pages and the odd muffeled swear word when ones monocle drops into the Hennessey.

      Tally ho, lickety split and what what you rotter, bounder and cad!!

    • That German comment from Lewis on twatter is definitely not his. The sequence of words is grammatically correct, but none that a native english speaker would ever use. It was written by someone from merc’s PR brigade.

  11. Not sure if anyone read James Allen’s article recently on why Hamilton believes the battle is so close, but I found it interesting. Essentially he’s saying it’s all to do with the transparency policy in the F1 teams and sharing data which is something that was not happening in karting or lower formulae, hence the edge he had over Rosberg and others back then. And to back this up (before anyone jumps in saying he’s looking for excuses) he admitted that if it wasn’t for that he would have never beat Alonso in 2007. Interesting stuff!

    • Do you think that’s going to stop some saying that?

      I read the article as well, quite insightful, because he also recognised the job that Nico is doing as well.

      • Indeed.. I think this greatly helped him come on strong in early 2007 as well. Podiums-wise.. he went from 3rd in Aus, stronger at Monaco for 2nd before the breakthrough win in Canada.

        • Maybe Alonso learned from that experience and that’s why his team-mates since then never managed to challenge him. Or Lewis was a bit special, which he is.
          And might also explain why Button was so strong at McLaren until Lewis left. However likeable and media-friendly he is, never rated him highly.

          • Yeah, not sure if Alonso stopped the data flow in the second half of the year either, maybe post-Hungary or so.

            Interesting to note that the last Button win was Spa 2012, where for some reason, Button’s car had the dominant pace, while Lewis chose the wing which lost him so much time on the straights.. even more than he could claw back in the corners, as he showed us in the tweeted telemetry! Couldn’t McLaren work out which one was better anyway?

            PS. Not counting Brazil 2012, as that should have been Hulkenberg’s IMO, before the ‘debris caution for the show/WDC battle’. Before that, it’s Australia 2012, before Button went off the boil. Hitting Karthikeyan was probably the last time he had the 1 up on Lewis..

          • The judge did an article that gave some insight into what occur in Spa 2012. If I remember correctly, he stated that it was Ron Dennis who had instructed the team not to share Jenson’s data with Lewis’s side of the garage. There was more, but I can’t remember the full details and I don’t want to tell lies on the judge, I’ve already got the gavel hanging over my head. But I bet if you ask him, he might be able to tell you what date it was published.

  12. Judge,
    An issue with the RSS feed? Here I get parsing errors:

    XML parsing failed

    XML parsing failed: syntax error (Line: 106, Character: 29)
    Error:
    invalid character
    Specification:
    http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-xml/#NT-Char
    103:
    : 105: 106: F\10\11FE\12Hokenheimring – German GP
    107:
    108:
    109:

  13. If that piece on Caterham was meant to clarify, Judge, you muddied things nicely….

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