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Previously on The Judge 13:
OTD Lite: 1988 – Senna wins first title
Ok, I couldn’t resist, but if you want to read more… click here
“To know and to act are one and the same. Tomorrow’s battle is won during today’s practice. Control your emotion or it will control you.“
The Samurai Jackal
Mr E – the mischevious old man
Even at 84 years of age, Bernie Ecclestone has a mischievous side to him. Whilst the business of making money dominates his every thought, he is not shy when it comes to stirring up a hornets nest.
With both Ferrari and Renault championing the relaxation of the freezing regulations to assist parity between the engine manufacturers, Mercedes has quite obviously taken the opposing view.
With Jean Todt seemingly in terror of making any decision which would enhance the pinnacle of motor-sport, it is left to the Octogenarian to inject a little humour into the proceedings.
“The thing to do is to freeze the Mercedes engine but not the others,” stated Mr E. “That would make sense but it won’t happen. I was saying the other day, that if Renault improved their engine and Ferrari and Mercedes gained similar amounts then it would be status quo.”
“Hamilton and Rosberg would still be racing between themselves as they are competitive men who want to win but it would be better if they were fighting with other teams.”
Hulkenburg settled and waiting big team chance
Nico Hulkenburg remains many peoples choice as the most under-valued driver on the grid. On countless occasions his name is offered in connection with many of the top teams and yet he never seems to get the break to prove his ultimate ability.
Ferrari held serious talks with the Hulk during the summer last year before ‘texting’ him to say his services wouldn’t be required. As reported on TJ13 several weeks before the announcement of Kimi Raikkonen being signed by Ferrari, speculation centred on Hulkenburg being in the prime seat to replace Felipe Massa.
In actual fact he was lined up in the event that Alonso chose to leave Maranello for pastures new.
Speaking of his re-signing for Force India for 2015, Nico offered a sage point. “It is great to have a stable environment for a change and not have to change teams. The contract renewal was in fact very easy to complete.”
Since his debut in 2010, the German driver has changed teams every year but his focus remains on the future: “My day in a top team will come, but until then I will do my utmost and enjoy my work.”
Fernandes – Big teams have too much money
According to Tony Fernandes, there is no place in Formula One for teams like Caterham. He also mentioned something that we at the chambers have been suggesting for a number of weeks – specifically that one of the grandees was potentially looking to purchase Caterham.
Speaking on Sky Sports News, TF spoke about why he had turned his back on F1.
“People can blame whoever, but the big teams are as much at fault as anyone. The gap has become way too big and it’s money. And so I thought, ‘Well, I can’t compete’. But I can compete at QPR; I can compete at Air Asia.”
“The sport has to examine itself as well. Ultimately we couldn’t carry on and we would have eventually gone into administration anyway or closed down the team.”
As administrators moved in last week, Fernandes admitted “There are people who want to go racing, for different reasons and Caterham has everything there to do it.”
“There may even be teams within F1 who want a second team – a Red Bull/Toro Rosso situation. So we’ll give it maximum support but it’s not something I want to get involved in anymore. You’ve got to immerse yourself in it. Racing’s over for me.”
His final rebuttal highlighted the commitment needed to run a successful F1 team : “Unless I give up and become a Ron Dennis – scary thought.” Although by Ron’s own standards his complete focus hasn’t delivered success yet either.