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Previously on The Judge 13:
OTD Lite: 1990 – One of the most legendary interviews ever
At the final race meeting of the 1990 season in Australia, Jackie Stewart leads Ayrton Senna into one of the most famous and quoted lines in motor-sport history.
“If you no longer go for a gap that exists, you are no longer a racing driver”
Of course this head to head followed just two weeks after the collision between Senna’s Mclaren and Prost’s Ferrari – arguably the most heinous piece of driving ever committed on track.
As determined in front of the camera as he was in every aspect of his career Senna argued his point forcibly with another motor-sport legend – Stewart. At times disrespectfully calling him ‘Stewart’ and others when he had regained his composure ‘Jackie’.
“Victory is reserved for those who are willing to pay it’s price.“ – Sun Tzu
The Samurai Jackal
Alonso’s McLaren deal appears done – reports(GMM)
After a frantic period of mystery and speculation, the course of Fernando Alonso’s future is now beginning to clear. Multiple authoritative sources are reporting that the Spaniard is definitely headed to McLaren-Honda, on an initial two-year deal to be Danish youngster Kevin Magnussen’s teammate.
“Could be,” team boss Eric Boullier told Spain’s Antena 3 when asked about Alonso’s future in connection with McLaren, where he drove with Mercedes power in 2007. “He is one of the drivers we have spoken to,” the Frenchman admitted. “He is one of the options. I hope that we have decided before Abu Dhabi, I want it to be done by then, but until now we have not decided.”
If the Alonso reports are true, the news is expected to end Jenson Button’s F1 career, amid suggestions he could be headed to Le Mans with Porsche.
Boullier continued: “One of the reasons it is taking us so long is that we have to make the right decision with someone who fits the team’s strategy for the coming years. I apologise to the fans, but it is something very important. Undoubtedly the most important decision in a long time.”
F1 legend Emerson Fittipaldi, a former champion for McLaren, thinks Alonso and the British team are the right fit for 2015. “Honda will want to return with guarantees,” he told Spain’s Marca, “and Fernando is one of the best drivers to develop a new project. I think it can be very successful.”
The Swiss newspaper Blick believes Alonso and McLaren actually agreed terms a few weeks ago in Russia, but for now the news remains unofficial.
“It looks like he is going there (to McLaren),” said another F1 legend, Mario Andretti, “but it’s not clear. I spoke (in Austin) with Ron Dennis about it but he quickly changed the subject,” Andretti smiled to Spain’s AS sports daily.
Also waiting is Ferrari, but the Italian team undoubtedly has its announcement of Sebastian Vettel’s impending arrival all ready to publish. Boullier, meanwhile, dismissed speculation Honda will make its return to F1 next year only after a troubled period of development. “It is curious that all the rumours about the engine being wrong or not being on time are coming from Italy,” he said. “Don’t worry. We will be ready.”
Mercedes close to agreeing engine ‘unfreeze’(GMM)
Talks over a touted engine ‘unfreeze’ for the 2015 season appear to have taken a dramatic turn. On Monday, media reports in Italy suggested Ferrari, Red Bull and Renault may have pulled off a political masterstroke over the US GP weekend by convincing F1’s dominant force Mercedes to agree to the relaxing of the engine homologation rules. That is despite Mercedes chiefs Toto Wolff and Niki Lauda respectively describing the proposals as “nonsense” and “irrational”, as it drives up costs and unfairly attacks the German squad for performing best under the new rules.
But now Italy’s La Repubblica is also reporting that Mercedes “has agreed to a compromise” over the engine freeze, which currently dictates that manufacturers may modify 48 per cent of the engine but have it re-frozen before the start of the 2015 season.
“Finally,” read the report, “thanks to pressure from (Bernie) Ecclestone and the FIA, the Germans gave in.”
La Repubblica cautioned that the compromise, while agreed by the Brackley team, will now have to be approved by Mercedes’ paymasters in Stuttgart.
Ferrari boss Marco Mattiacci said: “At the meeting on Saturday, Mercedes said it was willing to compromise. But I do not feel like saying the matter is closed now, because Mercedes had already declared its willingness before and then changed its mind.”
However, Mattiacci thanked Mercedes chairman Niki Lauda for at least “putting everyone around a table to discuss” the issue.
Other reports suggest the ‘unfreeze’ will now mean that manufacturers’ 2015 designs will not be locked in until July next year. Christian Horner, the boss of Renault’s works team Red Bull, confirmed: “Mercedes have accepted that they need to provide a window of opportunity to the others to introduce competition. They participated in a discussion, so they haven’t actually agreed to anything as yet, but there was a very constructive discussion which hopefully will see a solution in place in the very near future,” he added.