#F1 Daily News and Comment: Wednesday 3rd September 2014


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Previously on TheJudge13:

#F1 History: Len Terry 1923 – 2014

#F1 Circuit Profile – 2014: Autodromo Nazionale Monza – Round 13

OTD Lite: 1939 – Nuvolari win his last Grand Prix as war breaks out

Europe to impose sanctions on high profile events in Russia

Honda’s return is to raise awareness of their sporting character

Beautiful Max to ask Daddy for pocket money to race again

Circuit of Wales sublets to Donington as predicted

Haas Formula metamorphoses into Haas F1 Team

Parabolica challenge destroyed

OTD Lite: 1939 – Nuvolari win his last Grand Prix as war breaks out

Seventy-five years ago today – the inaugural Belgrade Grand Prix was run. It would be the last major international Grand Prix event before the outbreak of the Second World War, the last major victory of the legendary Tazio Nuvolari’s career and the end of one of the most remarkable eras in motor-sport history – as the Mercedes and Auto Unions drew this chapter to a close.

Just two days before, Germany had invaded Poland and today, France and Great Britain declared war on the Germans. The race was sponsored by King Peter II of Yugoslavia and generated major interest for the event with over 100,000 people attending the race.

Things became subdued when news broke, that morning, that war had been declared on Germany. Hermann Lang remembered, “All of us lost every inclination to race but Neubauer returned from our embassy with the news we must keep calm and start.”

In the race, the leading Mercedes of Manfred von Brauchitsch spun and stalled. He let the car run backwards to start it again but Nuvolari passed with typical brio, “Nuvolari came round the corner like a shadow…. thanks to his extreme driving skills an accident was avoided.”

Following the war, the ruling Communist Constituent Assembly deposed the king and he went into exile on the 29th November 1945 and subsequently rewrote history to erase the event form the nations memories.

The Jackal


Europe to impose sanctions on high profile events in Russia

TJ13 has maintained since the Russian occupation of Crimea, that it will become nigh on impossible for Formula 1 to go racing in Sochi.

Visions of Vladimir Putin punching fists on the grid with Lewis Hamilton and the stars of the British based Motorsports series have always been an anathema to even the most blind of the geopolitically aware.

The World Superbike series  recognised early that being seen to prance around a Russian track in pursuit of sporting glory would be perceived by many as utterly ridiculous, in the meant time the leadership of F1 fiddled whilst Rome burned. The Russian round of the biking championship was cancelled several months ago.

Italian news sources are stating tonight that in a call to a senior member of the European commission, Putin has claimed, if he so wished he could “take Kiev in two weeks”.

Russian foreign diplomats are suggesting these words have been taken out of context, but fail to deny Putin’s threat.

European heads of state met this last weekend and Italian Foreign Minister Federica Mogherini told the European Parliament on Tuesday that Europe must issue, “the strongest possible response.”

Mogherini, who will be the Euro bloc’s next foreign policy chief, said the European Commission, the EU executive, will present a strengthened package of sanctions against Russia over its military invasion of Ukraine by Wednesday.

Further, the new sanctions against Russia will excluded it from participating in “high-profile international cultural, economic or sporting events.”

A NATO summit is being convened today which is expected to ratify for the first time in NATO’s history, a proposal to deploy in Eastern Europe a rapid response unit of several thousand ground troops, which can be deployed at short notice to ‘hit hard’ in Ukraine.

Meanwhile the global media are failing to report the extreme global danger that Russian actions are currently provoking. they are currently obsessed with the gore and wickedness being perpetrated by Islamic lunatics in the Middle East.

So when those with even half a brain realised the most significant global event between the ex cold war parties was escalating toward levels of tension not seen since the Cuban missile crisis… F1 leaders spewed, ‘Where Bernie and the FIA lead, we will follow’.

Citing contractual obligations, Bernie’s minions are making fair comment; however, not one personal opinion is on record which suggested it may be unwise to race in Russia.

This reveals either the utter delusional state in which F1 finds itself at present, or that F1 is now ruled by a totalitarian regime akin to that in North Korea, which commands absolute compliance or the consequences will result in ‘elimination’.

The last vestiges of respect any reasonable individual had for the FIA and Jean Todt has surely been drowned in the abyss.

As TJ13 has continually asserted, the high water mark for the current F1 business plan has been achieved. For the first time in recent memory, we reported on Monday that almost half of the F1 races for 2015 have no title sponsor, and now another $40m is about to be extracted from the pockets of Bernie and CVC.

An old wisdom saying states, “Sow to the wind and reap the whirlwind”.

Bring on Baku…..


Honda’s return is to raise awareness of their sporting character

Further to the report TJ13 published yesterday in regards the anticipated return of Honda to Formula One, the Head of Honda’s motorsport division, Yasuhisa Arai offered a few more soundbites in regards to the manufacturers return.

Motorsport is in Honda’s DNA and the targets are of course very challenging to develop an environmentally friendly engine that remains competitive. But this is very important to us, it is the spirit of racing that is critical to our business. One of the reasons behind our decision to return is the fact that the F1 engines are producing similar speeds to the old generation of engine but with a Unit that is smarter technologically and concentrates on saving resources”

“Of course Honda has a glorious past as an engine supplier but not as a team owner, this is because our speciality is the engine. Mclaren, our partner’s speciality is the chassis and management of the race and track activity – so the best plan to win is to combine the two.”

It goes without saying that part of the reason Honda is pushing so hard to sign Fernando Alonso for next season is because they have witnessed just how ‘good’ the Mclaren chassis department is currently. Their engine would have to be comprehensively better than the competition just to be competitive with them! But an Alonso has the ability to raise the performance curve of the car seemingly through sheer will power alone.

As to next season, “I am confident that we will fight with Mercedes and I think the other two engine suppliers will recover next season too. I can imagine Mercedes has found the perfect balance between chassis and power unit and that the others are still trying, so we will work with Mclaren as a team.”

“Ultimately we want to increase awareness of our brand and send out a positive signal for our brand globally. In Europe fans perceive Honda as a sports brand and with Formula One as a catalyst we want to deliver the message that Honda are very sporting.

In comedy, the Japanese are shown as camera totting tourists who photograph even the moss growing between pavement cracks. As people they are always viewed as terminally polite and courteous to the extreme and with ground-breaking electronics and technology that is enjoyed around the world.

But Honda, a manufacturer of sporting cars…



Beautiful Max to ask Daddy for pocket money to race again

Speculation in the Italian media has risen to “alarming” rumours that Marussia may not be competing at Monza this weekend because of financial issues. Sources inside the Banbury team have refuted these claims but there is the very likely scenario that ‘Magnificent’ Max Chilton will be spectating this weekend.

Chilton Snr rescued his seat by paying the team between the two free practice sessions in Belgium but once again it seems his seat will be warmed by the posterior of a.n.other. Kamui Kobayashi has been spoken of as a possible replacement but it seems unlikely as surely his money would have seen him safe at Caterham – who are also in similar financial straits.


Circuit of Wales sublets to Donington as predicted

Back on the 24th March, TJ13 reported on the plans to build a circuit in Wales using questionable finance arrangements and loans from the Welsh and British governments. Of course at the time, Silverstone Circuits and Jonathon Palmer went on the offensive to highlight the truth behind these aspirations of the Circuit planners calling any release of monies akin to ‘illegal state aid‘.

On the 15th August, the court once again reported that the Circuit of Wales had signed a contract with MotoGP to host the British event for the next five years in the Welsh hills. In similar fashion to how Donington signed contracts with Bernie to host the British Grand Prix at the Leicestershire track before even a clod of earth had been removed, so to the ineffectual leaders of a world racing championship signing contracts with an organisation that chooses to reject all Freedom of Information requests in relation to their progression and finances.

Today word reaches TJ13 that as predicted the MotoGP event will be appearing at Donington next year.”After the announcement of the long-term partnership between Dorna and the Circuit of Wales three weeks ago, it was our priority to ensure the seat for 2015,” said Chris Herring of the Circuit of Wales. “It is in the interest of everyone, especially the fans, to make a decision as soon as possible and we believe that Donington Park is the right choice to grow the MotoGP in UK”.

Dorna CEO Carmelo Ezpeleta said: “The Circuit of Wales has worked hard to ensure the best outcome for fans of the British stage and we believe that Donington Park will be giving away another great race in 2015, Donington Park has a long tradition and has been the scene of some of the most exciting MotoGP races in recent years, we are confident that the hard work started four years ago, will ensure a successful event. “

Having hosted the event from 1987 to 2009 and losing the race simply because Donington’s Simon Gillett chased Bernie’s Holy Grail, it seems the machinations behind the scenes has returned the premier motorbike event to their spiritual home. As to the Circuit of Wales… more news as the fantasists release press statements.


Haas Formula metamorphoses into Haas F1 Team

It would appear that Ferrari have instilled a little common sense into the boss of their forth-coming B team. Originally Gene Haas had christened his future enterprise Haas Formula but has now announced that going forward they will be known as Haas F1 team.

To avoid any confusion that Haas had developed a new formula for baby milk, he explained, “Haas F1 Team automatically conveys our place among the pinnacle of motorsports. When you hear ‘F1’ you know exactly what it is – a global racing series that showcases the latest technology and attracts the best talent in engineering and design.”

“Haas Automation has an excellent reputation in the United States and I want that reputation to grow worldwide. Connecting Haas Automation with F1 in name and in practice when the Haas F1 Team debuts in 2016 is the best way to grow our business and elevate Haas Automation to a premium, global brand.”


Parabolica challenge destroyed

We always knew Charlie Whiting wasn’t quite all there. 35% of the gravel has been replaced. It would seem either his math is awry or the 35% meant depth not area… A tarmac runoff area which is wider than the circuit all in the name of safety…. sorry the official line was for the return of motor-bike racing wasn’t it Chuck?



67 responses to “#F1 Daily News and Comment: Wednesday 3rd September 2014

  1. Wouldn’t it have been better to have a 2-3m run off area and kept the majority of the gravel trap?

    They might as well remove the yellow lines and move it to the absolute outer edge. They say the cars are easier to drive, so now the tracks have to follow suit.

  2. So do the bikers not need that much run-off ? I thought the replacement of gravel was done to a) increase safety for bikes b)prevent flipping of F1 cars. So have they overdone it or is this yet another whine that F1 is becoming ‘too safe these days’ ?

    • The original excuse, sorry reason, was to get motorbike racing back at Monza. It was only a slip of writings tongue that revealed it was f1 who wanted the change.
      Show me how many bike tracks have removed gravel traps for Tarmac, ie tracks that f1 doesn’t run at

  3. Hi Guys.
    The Judge is keeping me on for at least one more podcast which is being recorded tonight.

    I’d love it if we could have your race predictions for the upcoming race to read out. Not who will win but stuff like ‘Nico gets T-boned by Jenson into turn 1. Jenson goes on to finish third. Declares it was revenge for his buddy Lewis, announces his retirement before dropping the mic and walking off the podium flipping Vs’. I exaggerate but you get the idea.

    Please use twitter for your comments via #TJ13 or mention me in your tweet, @SpannersReady. Include #F1 in all comments.
    If you clutter the comments section here with my podcast stuff you’ll get me in trouble with Fat Hippo.

    • Maldonado to win at Monza with a storming drive from the back of the grid to give Renault/Lotus their first win of the season.

      I’m putting a £1 on that😳

    • There needs to be a radio-call in function for these podcasts somehow. 🙂
      Frustrating when everyone’s opinions are wrong…

  4. Having read the article, i’m glad to see you anknowledge Alonso’s sheer will to win will overcome anything 🙂

    Joking asside, i can’t help but admire anyone in anysport, who maybe not the best, but they just have this sheer will to win, regardless of how outclassed they are by the oppostion.

    There was someone in snooker a couple years back (his name escapes me for now, i’ll add it later when i remember), he got himself to No.2 in the world, he had no right to ranked that high. He just refused to loose. Alonso if very much like that, as was Schumacher, they just refuse to loose, and wont accept they are beaten.

    • Shame Alonso stays. I think a change of team would do wonders. Or are Ferrari and him playing games?
      Works the contract both ways, can Ferrari end it now, because he can?

  5. “Haas Automation has an excellent reputation in the United States and I want that reputation to grow worldwide.” Ok this was a good morning laugh. Haas milling machines are sh*t. And there is a good reason why they aren’t popular over here. Mclaren does it (for years and years) on mazak. Both mercedes and williams use matsuura. Red Bull (and porsche to name drop) use dmg mori (which is the best out there). The only team which will be using Haas, except for Haas self, will be ferrari, as of next year due to their big sponsor deal. So maybe it’s best that alonso leaves them. Their car will be worse than this year. 😉

    • ….. James Allison to head of the machine workshop: “Can you machine this bar with a counter clockwise thread of 0.45367 mm?”
      ….Response, “Best we can do is to about an inch…. and the machine only mills clockwise threads….”

      • How’s that British aerospace industry going? Or the British computer industry? Or the British auto industry?

        Oh well, at least you’re good at talking “rubbish” about the yanks.

        • Well, I’m no brit. But i am a Miller and i can only say that it’s a fact that Haas machines are rubbish. They are “cheap” I’ll give em that. But at this moment there is noting better than a dmg mori. So this had nothing to do with “bashing the yanks” just a bit of unbelieve that a company like ferrari doesn’t go for the best out there. Or at least something which has some amazing qualities. Mclaren for instance takes mazak, wich is the best at making a program very quick due to its own operating system which is quite brilliant. And the choice of matsuura for both mercedes and williams is down to the fact that they deliver strong and durable, reliable machines. This has nothing to do with racism or xenophobia. Just real life experience on my behave.

    • maybe they’re improving the tech. that isn’t unheard of.

      Ferrari is certainly not going to accept and use equipment that produces even less competitive, lower-quality car (perhaps costing more time and raising inefficiencies, too) – right?

  6. It would seem that there is a bit about his tilt at F1 that the boss Gene haasn’t thought through properly just yet.
    He’d be lathe to admit to any uncertainty though. Rather he’ll turn up and bore us with the standard “all systems are go” pitch and bang on about the desire to do well “Where there’s a mill there’s a way”.
    However, we should show some tolerance and give him the chance to alloy our fears lest we suffer a backlash from his eccentric septic supporters before the team completes their first lap. It would be best to guage his progress before we broach the subject of their unpreparedness, if you get my drift 😉

  7. “A NATO summit is being convened today which is expected to ratify for the first time in NATO’s history, a proposal to deploy in Eastern Europe a rapid response unit of several thousand ground troops, which can be deployed at short notice *to ‘hit hard’ in Ukraine*.”

    Judge, this is inaccurate. The rapid response unit that the NATO is preparing will serve to defend Art 5, i.e. when a member country gets attacked. Ukraine isn’t part of NATO, so this unit will never get used to defend Ukraine, not unless there is unanimous *political* consensus in the NATO bazaar, that is (which will never happen given how smoothly the annexation of Crimea went, as well as the impending delivery of Mistrals). This unit is designed for the likes of Estonia, Romania or Poland (and even then there are interesting caveats related to its genuine combat effectiveness).

    However Ukraine, just like Georgia in 2008 (and Moldova now, for the matter), are out in the cold with the Siberian bear.

    PS For those with a longer memory span that remember the 2007 NATO missile defence system intended to be installed in Poland, which met with hysterical Russian opposition—including a nuclear threat on Poland—to the point where the whole plan was aborted: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NATO_missile_defence_system . I’m now curiously awaiting how long it will take for NATO to dig up the old plans, clear them of dust, and go ahead with the planned installations..

      • Sounds to me like the end game is just to split Ukraine in half, with the Ukrainian majority part joining the EU, and the part still with significant Russian majorities join the motherland once more… Putin was one of the most enthusiastic backers for referenda to join Russian majority parts of the ‘lost USSR’ back to Russia 25 years ago..

        • @f1esty

          “Sounds to me like the end game is just to split Ukraine in half, with the Ukrainian majority part joining the EU, and the part still with significant Russian majorities join the motherland”

          Yup, sounds just about right. I guess Russia’s pessimistic plan is to create Donetsk a la Transnistria and keep hold of Crimeea and the Black Sea; while the optimistic plan is to strip Ukraine from access to the Black Sea (from Harkov through Odessa up to Moldova), and in the process annex Transnistria and forment Gagauzian separatism a la Donetsk. Now that is going to be a pretty sight on the doorsteps of the EU, not to mention the approaching winter and Putin’s itchy fingers to turn those gas taps off..

          “join the motherland once more…”

          I disagree on this, though. Admittedly my knowledge of Ukrainian history is shaky, but that would be joining the motherland for the first time. As part of the USSR, the Ukrainian SSR was, well, separate. That’s why it broke off in 1991.

          Remember that what is happening today in Georgia, Ukraine, Moldova, the Baltics is still Stalin’s master-plan. Through deportations (forceful removal of local populations and exiling them to Siberia) and migrations (creation of administrative, linguistic, financial incentives for ethnic Russians to move in conquered territory), he has created the ingredients for the current hotspots: The Baltics, Odessa through Harkov, Transnistria, Ossetia, etc. One utterly ingenious element was keeping all heavy industry in the Eastern parts of those countries, creating economic incentives for separatism. In 1991 all Moldovan heavy industry was located in Transnistria (Eastern Moldova); now a big chunk of Ukrainian industrial activity is in Donetsk and Luhansk (Eastern Ukraine).

          Both Lenin and Stalin would have been proud of their young descendant now playing with soldiers, and Putin must be eternally grateful for all their sweat and hard work..

          • I was a bit disingenuous to say ‘joining the motherland once more’, but that’s what we are told in interviews with the Russians living in Ukraine that they want to happen.

            But you are right… 100 years on, and they still have power, having stacked the deck in their favour.. and Stalin himself was Georgian, ironically.

            Perhaps Putin will try and regain control of these areas with minimal casualties. It’s hard to see what we could do to stop a march to Transnistria, or Crimea at least.

          • Is there any possibility of a WWIII, if the EU/Russian and IS/Middle East conflicts get out of hand/spiral out of control?

          • @f1esty

            “But you are right… 100 years on, and they still have power, having stacked the deck in their favour.. and Stalin himself was Georgian, ironically.”

            Indeed. Social planning at its best.

            “Perhaps Putin will try and regain control of these areas with minimal casualties. ”

            Nah, Russia is no Western country when it comes to war. They manned their way out of trouble during WWII, basically using people as entire war fronts, with horrific casualty statistics. Only the US is skittish about losing 1000 soldiers during a 3-year invasion: What a joke from the point of view of the average Soviet cynic! So no, Putin cares little and less of human casualties, and nor does the average Russian citizen.

            “It’s hard to see what we could do to stop a march to Transnistria, or Crimea at least.”

            A start would be to arm-twist fellow NATO allies (i.e. France) to avoid selling state of the art warships (i.e. Mistrals) that would put your average minion (i.e. Ukraine, Moldova, etc.) firmly on the back foot when it comes to Russian blitzkrieg subterfuge movements.

            “Is there any possibility of a WWIII, if the EU/Russian and IS/Middle East conflicts get out of hand/spiral out of control?”

            No idea. Like most of us, I’m simply a back-seat passenger trying to figure out what is happening. But given recent developments and territorially expansionist Russian actions, I’d say we’re one or two steps away from “all bets are off”. Before Kosovo 2008, Georgia 2008 was inconceivable. Before Georgia 2008, Ukraine 2014 was inconceivable. After Ukraine 2014, the annexation of Transnistria and/or Moldova is the next logical step. So far so few consequences.

            But if after Moldova Putin starts feeling Hitler-like cockiness, and bets on nuclear intimidation and perceived Western impotence (they have elections, you see, what a ridiculous constraint!), and makes a move on the Baltics and/or Poland (via Kalliningrad), all NATO countries.. Well, in that case I’d say grab your preferred history book and start writing a whole new chapter.

            Of course in all probability this will not happen, and Putin is bluffing for domestic audience and his personal memoirs and a place in the Lenin/Putin hall of fame so idolized by retired Russians (every night he must be dreaming of his personal mausoleum, placed in a red pyramid!), but I would wager that the chances of escalating events and miscalculation are greatly increased by recent events, and large-ish scale military confrontations in Europe are no longer off the menu: Russia has just become a crystal clear territorial threat to the EU.

            It’s a pity that few Western Europeans understand that a horrific war was waging in their very countries only 65 years ago.. After two-three generations of stable life, people start deluding themselves that life is only comfort and roses..

          • @Joe Papp

            “Putin Needs ‘Not Victory but War Itself,’”

            Yup, sounds just about right. Putin needs for ordinary Russians to feel that he’s needed, and thus have the mandate to continue leading his fledgling dictatorship. But the taking of Crimea is already a big cornerstone in his popularity ratings: you wouldn’t believe how bitter, 50 years after, ordinary Russians felt about the transfer in 1954 of the Crimean Oblast to the Ukrainian SSR. And you wouldn’t believe what self-satisfied cords retaking it back must have struck with ordinary Russians.

            Putin has now almost guaranteed his place in the proud Lenin/Stalin/Putin hall of fame..

      • Not necessarily. Recall the tasty bit of Kalliningrad, which is essentially an oversize military base, much like Transnistria, Crimea, etc.

        But your point stands. Poland’s fears do go through Ukraine and the Baltics. The more Russia advances towards Poland, the more real the territorial threat becomes.

  8. Re: “Parabolic challenge destroyed”

    I can already see Vettel using the runoff area to take advantage. Will he ever be punished for not respecting the track limits?
    In a different topic but still within ‘parabolics’, if you guys think that’s wrong wait to see the aberration Tilke is doing to the Hermanos Rodriguez’ last section.

    • I count that (Vettel abusing run off areas) as the Germans subtle way to mock the authorities who ruin the great tracks of the world.

      All they needed to do with parabolica to maintain the challenge was to leave a fairly thin strip of gravel around the edge of the corner and have tarmac behind it. On that basis you can’t dip a wheel off without having to back out of it in a big way, but if you’re going to crash 95% of the run off it tarmac for better retardation and a decreased chance of rolling.

      I thoroughly hate all these tarmac run offs. Not only are the cars evidently reasonably easy to drive (afterall if a 17 year old can do it…) but they’re also making the tracks easier to drive. F1 should be the pinnacle of Motorsport. I want the cars to be challenging and the tracks even more so.

      • Lunatics running the asylum. The latest line is the drivers requested it. I don’t know what’s wrong with just adding a tarmac escape road round the back, which seem to be your proposal.

        Over here, buildings can be designated “landmark” and then you can’t mess with them as easily. Perhaps they should do that with tracks as well.

    • “if you guys think that’s wrong wait to see the aberration Tilke is doing to the Hermanos Rodriguez’ last section.”

      Well, given that they built a baseball stadium in the middle of Peralta, I suspect that this is one job Tilke can’t actually make worse.

  9. Merhi was at Monza.. but apparently doesn’t have a super-licence anymore… maybe the one for winning F3 expired in less than 5 years? It would be a shame if such a bureaucratic quirk ended an F1 team, for he and Sainz could drive the last races with backing from RB and Mercedes, which would keep Caterham and Marussia afloat until 2015 at least..

    • $400k or E300k per race.. maybe the FIA want some dolla to approve the licence request.. Lotterer said no as he would be missing FP1..

    • Honestly I’d like to see a couple of teams scrapped. Now it would be a real pity to see the history of Sauber or Enstone wiped off, but the Marussia’s and the Caterham’s.. Meh.

      Ultimately there will be no incentive for Bernarnd and his cronies to modify the distribution of revenues unless some catastrophic events happen, and (following HRT) a Marussia and/or Caterham write-off is more than palatable (to me).

      • True, and if we had 8 teams of 3 drivers, then there might be less pay drivers around than there are currently in the bottom 3 teams. But it’s the loss of jobs and infrastructure.. just give some of the money from the top to the bottom, and we’d have a close grid, and more people employed in F1.. i.e. more along the lines of the ‘EPL’, which you would have thought would be more like F1 in money distribution.

        I would also suggest that the more teams there are, the more available they are to be bought by any manufacturers that wish to come back in (e.g. BMW-Sauber).

      • I disagree. I want to go back to more teams and no requirement to run the whole season. I think that if a USA team or a Japanese team wanted to cobble together a car and design it around one or two races including their home GP that would be great. If they make the 107% rule then bring it on.

        And for the smaller teams like Marussia. If they skipped the expensive fly-away races and concentrated their money on the European calendar maybe they could afford more updates and would do a lot better.

        • @j

          ” I want to go back to more teams and no requirement to run the whole season. I think that if a USA team or a Japanese team wanted to cobble together a car and design it around one or two races including their home GP that would be great. If they make the 107% rule then bring it on.”

          Oh, I definitely subscribe to that!! But as it is there is no reason for FIA to understand the need to change tack. Maybe scrapping a couple of teams would ruin Todt’s breakfast, and maybe then some more open entry requirements (and more equitable revenue distribution) would be devised. But as they say, dream on..

          It would be so much more fun if there were more teams in the Quali than available race slots, and to see teams actually fight for the right to race on Sunday. Then if Hamilton has a flambé or Maldonado retests the run-off areas and the barriers during Q1, then you won’t see either in the race: Wouldn’t that be cool!! 🙂

  10. Let’s hope everyone has their popcorn at the ready, tomorrow’s driver press conference should be very entertaining. Mercedes has confirmed that both Lewis and Nico will be in attendance.

  11. If true about Max, that’s very disappointing.

    What a degradation, to go from finishing every race in rookie F1 season, to missing events b/c of the team’s (and his?) financial failings (even if the sport’s income distribution is worse than unfair).

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