Day 10 #F1 2015 Winter Testing: Barcelona, Morning Report


Circuit de Catalunya

Hello and welcome everybody, as we prepare for the tenth day of season preparation in #F1. Like yesterday you will be informed about the day’s events by the dastardly duo Andrew Huntley-Jacobs and Adam Macdonald. In the afternoon they’ll be joined by someone announced as ‘a large ungainly amphibious mammal’, but we have currently no idea, who that could be. And with those words of wisdom we surrender entrust you to the gentle guidance of Adam.

Good  morning all those out there in TJ13 land.  Almost time for the green flag at the Circuit de Catalunya and it looks to be another great day. Again, very few fans have braved the early morning wake up to hear the cars break the silence here, but the paddock has been a hive of activity throughout the night.  Heavy aero work expected from the Mercedes team today as they look to try out even more extravagant designs to, according to one mechanic “maintain the gap” – no resting on their laurels then!

green Green Flag: Houston we have lift off!  Sebastian Vettel, Nico Rosberg and Pastor Maldonado head out immediately, as the others still clear the sleep out of their eyes.

Verstappen, Bottas and Nasr also join the action on this cold, but dry, 8°C morning.

Times are logged by Verstsappen and Rosberg, although they are so uncompetitive they would make an HRT look quick.  Button joins the circuit as the team is once again in recovery mode following the plethora of problems they have encountered over the past month.  This on the same day as reports in Italy talk of a ‘yellow Alonso’ being pulled from his car in the crash last week. Even those that point to the Red Bull problems of early 2014 cannot look past the fact that at the second Bahrain test the team was looking to have vastly improved. At this rate, it will be a long season for the fans of the Woking team.

To further drive home the position McLaren find themselves in, there is a man greeting Button’s return to the pits with a fire extinguisher in hand. Nothing screams confidence like a precautionary measure after a mere 9km of running – although ‘good news’ – he wasn’t needed in the end.

Anyone able to help here; is that flowviz on the Sauber or has the blue and yellow of the Banco do Brasil sponsorship just merged together from their speed yesterday?

Track temperature now into the double digits as the battle of the Robot Wars lookalikes continues.  Vettel, Kvyat and Rosberg have all toured with sensors attached to their challengers. One poignant part of these slightly strange looking constructions is that they are a clear reminder of who has the money to compete and who does not.  The flowviz paint is the cheaper and less reliable option, which also gives away more of an idea to your competitors when photographed.

As far as the aero battle is looking, Ferrari are focusing on measuring the air flow behind the driver, while the others are working towards the front of the car - a sign of Vettel's influence already?

As far as the aero battle is looking, Ferrari are focusing on measuring the air flow behind the driver, while the others are working towards the front of the car – a sign of Vettel’s influence already?

At last, a competitive time half an hour into the session and it is the Brazilian rookie Felipe Nasr who sets it, a 1:27.965 to get the ball rolling. Set on the supersoft tyres, the Brazilian dives back into the pit complex – hardly surprising given the temperature.

For anyone who is wondering about those Caterham assets, they can be found here, a sad sight for any F1 fan.

Thanks to @Sareyware for sending us these snaps in…

Bottas has headed out once more with an aero device attached to the car, although he returns to the pits straight away. So there we have it, in the first 45 minutes there have been 50 laps completed – not bad value for the fans who bothered to set their alarms and get on down.

As Kvyat, Bottas and Verstappen strap on medium tyres for some laps it is time I depart and hand you over to a man so noble they have to name biscuits after him!  Over to you AJ…


…thanks Adam….

It looks like the aero rakes are beginning to be stashed and we may see some lap times shortly. Of course testing is not about lap times – so the purists tell us – then you listen to the drivers talking at the end of the day. Clearly times do matter to them and the teams – it’s just the context of those times which is important.

This is where we stand so far.

Driver Team Car. Lap Time Diff No Laps
1. Nasr Sauber C34 1:27.965 9
2. Verstappen Toro Rosso STR10 1:28.408 +0.443 10
3. Vettel Ferrari SF15-T 1:29.456 +1.491 8
4. Maldonado Lotus E23 1:30.722 +2.757 11
5. Rosberg Mercedes GP W06 1:38.350 +10.385 11
6. Bottas Williams FW37 no time 14
7. Kvyat Red Bull Racing RB11 no time 11
8. Button McLaren MP4-30 no time 6
9. Hulkenberg Force India VJM08 no time 0

Force India’s reputation has taken a bit of a battering recently. Fans of the Silverstone team who have believed the PR for the past 2-3 years that funds are plentiful, are beginning to realise the truth. Vijay is no bountiful billionaire millionaire owner – and if he could wash his hands of the team respectably – he would in an instant.

Anyway, we will be seeing the VJM08 this afternoon and the team just tweeted – @ForceIndiaF1 “This bright garage door hides our new VJM08, which is here at the track and currently being worked on! #FeelTheForce”



Back to the track – currently Rosberg, Nasr, Vettel and Button are out there. Button is on the development tyre and Rosberg and Vettel on mediums…

However… Nasr is on the super soft tyre – so let’s see if we get a glory run over the next few minutes. The track temperature is in double digits, so here we go….

While we wait for Baby Felipe (as opposed to Felipe Baby) Rosberg goes quickest with a 1:25:730 and Bottas second overall with 1:26:909.

…Oh well, the Sauber is doing a race simulation as Nasr’s times are disappointing for the super soft tyre….. lap after lap in the 1m27s…. this is definitely not a glory run.

 @RedBullRacing – “Back aboard the for Day Two of Test Three. Aero runs are the main focus for Dany this morning.

This is why Danny K(aye?) has done 14 laps and not recorded a time yet.



Vettel has just completed a 17 lap stint and returns to the pits in the Ferrari everyone believes to be a different colour than it was last week.

SHARK!!!!! SHARK!!!!!!!! Where…….WTF?

Oh well. That’s okay. Friend of TJ13 – Matt Somerfirld bringing you tech lovers some interesting stuff there.


The weather looks as though it can’t make its mind up which way to go today. One way clouds and a hint of rain – the other direction is clear blue skies.

The twiitersphere is alive with useless information as the mundane nature of the testing unfolds this morning. @GrandPrixDIary reveals, “At the Australian Grand Prix, this will be the number of days since last race win:

  • Ferrari – 673
  • McLaren – 841
  • Williams – 1037


Fingers crossed Jenson Button fans. He’s completed almost double yesterdays lappage – 13 so far. But now we’ll see if the McLaren Honda can put some proper mileage on the clock as the team have just said that their initial data checks and adjustments are now complete.

Following a short stint on the super soft tyres knocking out 1m27s laps, Nasr for Sauber has just done a similar stint on the mediums. 1:29.4, 1:29.6, 1:29.9, 1:30.0 and 1:29.6.

HAMFOSI NEWS. Having secured last years driver championship, Kevin Eason of the Times is reporting that Lewis Hamilton has decided he wants to be the best paid driver on the grid under any new contract. Of course Sebastian Vettel was relatively ‘underpaid’ at Red Bull given the titles he was accumulating. Vettel is reportedly earning 50m euro now at Ferrari.

Alonso was apparently lured to Macca for around 40m euro, so Mercedes clearly know they need to cough up over a £1 million a week if they wish to land Lewis as their driver beyond 2015.

REMEMBER – Toto Wolff’s latest ‘soft deadline’ or expectation, was that Mercedes and Hamilton would do a deal before Melbourne.

Back on track – Nico Rosberg has upped his pace and set a new quickest time of the day. A 1:25:363 on the medium tyre. The German then goes purple in sector one of the next lap, but completes the circuit outside his best time. Nico’s pit board is out counting down from nine laps. Let’s see at the end how his stint compares to the Sauber’s from earlier.


Rosberg is now lapping in the 1m27s

Driver Team Car. Lap Time  Diff  No Laps
1. Rosberg Mercedes GP W06 1:25.365 28
2. Bottas Williams FW37 1:26.790 +1.425 31
3. Nasr Sauber C34 1:27.965 +2.600 25
4. Maldonado Lotus E23 1:28.153 +2.788 33
5. Verstappen Toro Rosso STR10 1:28.408 +3.043 23
6. Button McLaren MP4-30 1:28.868 +3.503 15
7. Vettel Ferrari SF15-T 1:29.456 +4.091 31
8. Kvyat Red Bull Racing RB11 no time 14
9. Hulkenberg Force India VJM08 no time 0

Ferrari appeared to have slipped somewhat in the pecking order since the blistering days of Jerez. They have yet to complete a race simulation. Sebastian Vettel has just completed 200km for the day and a run on the medium tyre run with lap times

1:29.6, 1:29.6, 1:29.8, 1:29.8, 1:29.8, 1:30.0, 1:30.2, 1:30.0 and 1:30.5

Nasr on the same tyres and with the same engine earlier delivered

1:29.4, 1:29.6, 1:29.9, 1:30.0 and 1:29.6

Valtteri Bottas has recently improved his best to 1:26:032 (+.667 to Rosberg) and Button too delivers a personal best of the day 1:28:646. Both the Williams and the McLaren now return to the pits.

On track now just Max Verstappen, Pastor Maldonado and Felipe Nasr.

THE BIG QUESTION is whether we will see the VJM08 on time as promised. The Force India team originally planned to have the car up and running this morning – then later stated it would be this afternoon. They are currently having some final difficulties, which may mean we see Hulkneberg debut their 2015 car even later again – or they do some McLaren type running which is well off the pace.

BOOM: There’s an engine noise now burbling out from FI’s shuttered garage….


..and Sebastian Vettel returns to the track.

The Toro Rosso has been looking a handful over the past couple of days. Both ‘chilli’ Sainz and today Max Verstappen appear to be having difficulty getting on the power without the back end stepping out. On etheory is they are trying different engine maps when compared to the big bull brothers.

That said, Carlo Sainz claimed last night the team had made ‘a big step forward’ with the car this week – looks more like it is stepping out sideways nicely to me.

Verstappen now goes 5th quickest with a 1:26:957 on the medium tyre.

Still no time set by Kvyat, but will all this kit hanging off the car – no wonder…

more controversy builds over the ALonso crash. Romain Grosjean is not happy with the astro turf.

“I don’t know what happened,” said Romain when asked by reporters about the Alonso crash. “I know that day was very windy and gusty which makes Turn 3 a bit tricky. I don’t know if he went on the AstroTurf on the exit [but] I hate that surface because when you get on it … you lose the car or it stays straight. I don’t know if he hit that and then went into the barrier.

“There a few places where you really don’t want to go on the AstroTurf. 130R in Suzuka, the long Turn 8 in Austin where they added AstroTurf and it wasn’t there the year before. It’s a trade-off in-between stopping the car from leaving the track and of course safety. At the moment it’s the best material we have so it’s fine. Sometimes you can cross it more than others, like India, you can play quite a lot with them, and there is other places where you just don’t want to use it.”

Mmm. Try driving within the track limits maybe?
Not to be outdone by their little brothers, Red Bull get some pit stop practice in too. Mrs. Judge wishes they’d done this more when her beloved Mark was driving for the team… all those missing wheels when he left the pit box huh lads?

Jenson completes a 7 lap run on medium tyres bringing his tally to a monumental 29 – though McLaren appear to be struggling with their abacus – as they just tweeted Jense has done a mere 22. Clearly this is way above expectations,

12 noon

Nasr puts in his personal best in the Sauber – 1:26:408 – over a second slower than Rosberg and on the same tyre

Driver Team Car. Lap Time Diff No Laps
1. Rosberg Mercedes GP W06 1:25.365 42
2. Vettel Ferrari SF15-T 1:25.901 +0.536 53
3. Bottas Williams FW37 1:26.032 +0.667 41
4. Nasr Sauber C34 1:26.408 +1.043 43
5. Verstappen Toro Rosso STR10 1:26.766 +1.401 51
6. Maldonado Lotus E23 1:28.013 +2.648 39
7. Button McLaren MP4-30 1:28.052 +2.687 29
8. Kvyat Red Bull Racing RB11 no time 20
9. Hulkenberg Force India VJM08 no time 0

Sebastian Vettel just completes his best lap of the day – but is around 7kph down on Bottas best time through he speed trap

ALSO IN THE NEWS – expect to hear later today Manor Marussia Racing confirmed for 2015. They have received investment from a private individual…. Stephen Fitzpatrick who is behind the resurrection of the Marussia F1 Team. His company Ovo Energy is not believed to be involved and well known supermarket executive Justin King will be involved in the running of the team.

…Force India COMING SOON…

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Phew… Hulkenberg looked to be grinding to a halt at the final chicane – but made it safely back to pit row. Well this is a bonus for the team despite being on track 26 days later than those who were in Jerez on 1st Feb – They can get those pesky systems switched on before lunch – then UP, UP and AWAY…

BREAKING…. Kvyat finally sets a time – 23 laps on the board and he has a best of 1:29:294 – second slowest behind guess who?


Half an hour until lunch…. looking forward to a dry, stale sandwich – or maybe Mercedes AMG F1 have something tasty on offer…

So prior to today during the entire winter testing… Rosberg had 505 laps, Lewis 456. Hamilton’s had the bulk of the bad luck with car failures and feeling unwell – but by the end of today Nico may have 150-175 more laps in the bank than Lewis. That’s a lot of running.

In fact the slow installation lap and put put through the chicane – was a puncture for Hulkenberg…. at least the team have plenty of tyres left in their pre-season allocation from Pirelli.


During all this excitement, Baby Felipe goes quickest with a  1:24:479 – on the soft tyre – and the team completed a full race sim yesterday. Things are looking up after the gear box issues that plagued them here last week.

Red Flag Risk Alert. We currently have Pastor Maldonado, the virginal VJM08 and Macca Honda in play – gotta be worth an each way punt on a red flag before lunch.

Just over ten minutes to lunch and only Button, Nasr Vettel and the Hulk not on track.

Here’s Bottas current long run on the mediums. It’s followed by Vettel’s and then Nasr’s on the same compound earlier

  • 1:28.2, 1:28.2, 1:28.2, 1:28.3, 1:28.7, 1:29.2, 1:29.0, 1:28.8, 1:29.1 and 1:28.9
  • 1:29.6, 1:29.6, 1:29.8, 1:29.8, 1:29.8, 1:30.0, 1:30.2, 1:30.0 and 1:30.5
  • 1:29.4, 1:29.6, 1:29.9, 1:30.0 and 1:29.6

Hulkenberg sets a 1:31:165 just before lunch on the development tyre then pits – Jense is up to 43 laps with a 1:28:052

checkered There’s the table cloth!!

Lunch is here… so catch ya later folks

Driver Team Car. Lap Time Diff No Laps
1. Nasr Sauber C34 1:24.071 59
2. Rosberg Mercedes GP W06 1:25.216 +1.145 64
3. Vettel Ferrari SF15-T 1:25.339 +1.268 69
4. Bottas Williams FW37 1:26.032 +1.961 59
5. Verstappen Toro Rosso STR10 1:26.766 +2.695 78
6. Maldonado Lotus E23 1:28.013 +3.942 50
7. Button McLaren MP4-30 1:28.052 +3.981 44
8. Kvyat Red Bull Racing RB11 1:29.294 +5.223 36
9. Hulkenberg Force India VJM08 1:31.165 +7.094 5

50 responses to “Day 10 #F1 2015 Winter Testing: Barcelona, Morning Report

  1. Times explains why the Merc/Ham negotiation is taking so long: apparently he’s asking a mere £50m p/a….

    • Well if the numbers for Seb and Fred are correct, then surely he’s entitled to ask for similar amounts, even the figure being quoted in the article seems absurd at best. He’s the face of the sport as well as the team and should be paid as such.

      • Why is Lewis the face of the sport? For many people that’s actually Alonso.
        The numbers bandied about are mere speculation anyway and as always it’s a case of supply and demand. Do they need to raise Lewis’ salary? No they don’t as there are others lined up, who ask less and would win the title just as well in that car.
        So this isn’t a case of what people think he deserves, it’s a case of what Merc is willing to spend – and that seems to be a lot less than Lewis wants.

      • And an other thing. Hamilton isn’t entitled to the amount of money vettel gets. Vettel has 4 titles. Hamilton 2. So he should only get half of the pay that vettel gets. If you go by your theory of whom deserves what. And as for alonso he has only 2 titles but he’s regarded as the best driver out there so he’s entitled to more money as hamilton aswell based on your theory. 😉

      • Smelling a rat here…..can you give an absolute assurance that you’re not Lewis’ manager 🙂

    • I hope Merc have a contract ready for Bottas.

      I like Lewis but £50m is ridic. Merc already gave him the best car.

      • And for that reason he should demand less than what he thinks he’s worth to the team? They didn’t give him the best car when he joined, it was all a gamble that paid off for both him and Mercedes, because there was no guarantees that they would’ve built such a dominant monster. Granted that the figure being quoted is absurd.

        • Do you really think Hamilton would have gone there without the belief / knowledge that the Merc was going to be as good as it was last year? They persuaded him to leave McLaren based on how good their 2014 engine was going to be, with the knowledge works teams have a huge advantage as well. Otherwise there’s no way he would have left for Mercedes. He jumped at the right time before everyone wanted to be in their car and it paid off for him.

          He’s going to have to take a pay cut because Mercedes know they’ll be out in front for another couple of years yet, with a car that they don’t need to pay somebody £50 pounds or whatever it is. If I was him I’d drive that car for them on a contract of a bag of crisps per race and a packet of dog food!

          Time will tell if money means more than success to Hamilton. I really hope it’s success.

          • What load of rubbish!!!!!

            Yes they convinced him to leave, but the fact still remains, for all their dyno testing and info, they could not guarantee 100% that they would have the best car, because for all we know, the Ferrari could’ve turned out to be the best car on the grid. They too are a works team and how did their package turned out? How many labelled him a fool for leaving probably the fastest car on the grid in 2012 for a poor under performing Mercedes team? And yes he would’ve left McLaren, are you forgetting his lunch date with Horner at the Canadian gp? Are you also forgetting that Mercedes approached Alonso at one point and he turned them down? It’s well documented that the relationship with McLaren had run its course and he wanted out.

            So because Mercedes has the best car, he should take a pay cut? Dude you’re a joke!

            So does that mean if Ferrari or McLaren manage to deliver dominate cars to their drivers, that they too should take a pay cut when it comes time to renew their contracts or would the be entitled to a pay rise?

          • Haha calm down my dear, you’re missing the point. He can obviously expect a certain large wage because he’s world champion and one of the best drivers on the grid, but Mercedes obviously don’t have to offer him that. They know it’s going to take a couple of years at least for the field to have closed up on them so why pay somebody a salary of a gillion Euro’s when I’m pretty sure Mr Blobby could win a race in one of their cars at the moment. It just doesn’t make any economical sense does it?
            If you took your Hamilton blinkers off it’s painly obvious to see that.

            As to your point about Ferrari possibly being the best on the grid, they could well have been, but there wasn’t a seat going there at that time, and even if there was Alonso would have vetoed the move, so your point is totally irrelevant.

            You’re telling me with all the CFD analysis of the cars and dyno testing these days they wouldn’t have been fairly certain they were onto a winner? Come off it, you’re clutching at straws now. They could have been fairly confident when wooing Hamilton that they would be providing him with a title challenging car, and that would have been good enough for him I imagine.

            Relating to your point about Ferrari or McLaren being in Mercedes position I’m fairly sure they could expect to be in strong position when it comes to driver negotiations also. It could also have been one of the reasons at the time Hamilton left, was because Ron Dennis was saying live on telly he would have to take a paycut, and guess what McLaren had the best car at the time. Obviously it went tits up after that but the sentiment still applies.

            Don’t forget F1 hasn’t seen this level of domination for decades, and I implore you to find any company on the planet that would throw money away as needlessly as Mercedes would be by offering Hamilton the mentioned amount of money. If you can come back at me with one, they’ve either gone bust or the MD has been locked away in a mental asylum!!

          • @Tommo…..

            Based on CFD and all their gadgets, Jenson said the 2013 McLaren was faster and better than the 2012 car……hmmmmm

            Based on Hamilton’s own words, what he was offered to join Mercedes, was less than what McLaren offered him, so he left money on the table to join a team that hadn’t done jack since they returned full time.

            And i did say that the figure quoted, was absurd at best.

          • Yeah fair enough, but it’s been fairly well documented McLaren’s aero department didn’t know what they were doing for a while!

            If it’s true McLaren offered more money then that enforces my point that Mercedes must have been able to be prove how good their car was when in negotiations with Lewis at the time. Otherwise he would have stayed surely, to keep himself in the best current car as things stood. Without that the risk would have been too great.

        • Right at the moment Lewish is definitely worth less to MB than Seb to Ferrari or Fred to McLaren.
          If you have a great car you don’t *need* a great driver.
          Both Ferrari and McLaren are coming off years of “failure” by their standards so need all the help they can get.
          I reckon Fred would be a pay driver out of his own pocket to get a genuine crack at his third championship.
          MB will SWOT the decision to death with Bottas as the alternative. Hamilton’s known but v. expensive. Bottas has potential and is super cheap by comparison. Interesting choice to be made.

          • Oh so because both Ferrari and McLaren have rubbish cars, their drivers deserve to be paid a heck of a lot more?

            Wouldn’t the best solution be, pay them less now and if they manage to help revive the fortunes of the team, reward them for their efforts?

            As for Bottas, he’s overrated

          • Fortis, my young friend. You don’t seem to grasp the mechanics of a market-driven economy.
            McLaren and Ferrari have lesser cars, so they need to pay big bucks to convince the top drivers to drive them with little chance for a title.
            Merc has a car Chilton would win in. They don’t need Lewis to drive it for them. They can sit down Bottas in it and he will win just as well, perhaps with 55 seconds gap at the end of a GP instead of 1 minute.

            It’s not nice, especially for a Lewis fan, but that’s how market-driven economy works.

            F1 isn’t a meritocracy and last year’s title is very old news very fast. Just ask Seb, how the team “rewarded” him for his fourth title.

          • “deserves” has naff all to do with it. You seem to think someone, someone cares that anything to do with F1 is “fair” or something. Mucho lols.

            Drivers are just employees bought into help win championships. If you are desperate for success and need help to get that success then you’ll pay more for a good employee. MB are neither desperate or in need of too much help at the moment.
            F1 is business. ROI rules. If you can invest way less for the same result then you win.

          • @Hippo…

            So they needed him when they were nowhere and now that they are top dogs, he’s surplus to requirements? So would the same apply to Seb and Fred if either team becomes the top dog?

          • Yes, it would. Ask Seb. They paid him a mere pittance in comparison to Alonso while he was collecting titles for them, simply because they didn’t need to pay big bucks.

            Sorry to be so blunt, Fortis, but I think your attachment to Lewis is a wee bit unhealthy. As a rabid Vettel supporter I can sympathize with the urge to defend him from people trying to belittle his achievements, but seriously, making a fuzz over how much he is paid? With all due respect, that’s ridiculous.

          • @Hippo….

            Can we stick to the conversation and stop with this rubbish about unhealthy relationship, i’m merely discussing the merits of what was written in the article.

            If you read my original post, i said the figure quoted was absurd, i’m not arguing about how much he’s paid, but rather peoples argument that he should take a pay cut, now that Mercedes are winning…

            So basically what Roger and yourself are saying…As a reward for bring the team success, you’ll be offered a paycut, because we can find someone else cheaper


            If you’re going to talk about ROI, i’m certain that they’ll have already and will make a substantial ROI on whatever they pay him, be it at a lower or higher salary package?

          • Your are mixing something up, Fortis. Nobody here says Lewis should take a paycut. We’re saying he will have to, because Merc know they can get away with it. And as I said, it’s not nice, but the reality of market dynamics.

          • What you deserve and what you get is never the same. Especially because Mr boss man always thinks you deserve less than you think.

          • Nobody here says Lewis should take a paycut. We’re saying he will have to…

            An interesting, and probably incorrect viewpoint.

          • Ah but hippo, why will he have to? Now it’s up to him to negotiate. If he can convince them he won’t have to take the cut. Now its all about how good are you when things get tough. And there are some points he has an advantage. And there are some point where mercedes has the advantage. And that’s why it take so long.

          • Fortis, forgive me for saying I’m never going into business with you. The sole point is to maximise shareholder value – “substantial” and “more or less” mean nothing. Absolute maximum ROI is the only acceptable goal.

            Nigel: the breadth, heft and righteousness of your argument has convinced us all your viewpoint is correct. Thanks :/

          • Now Lewis is his own manager, he can afford at least 10% less gross which would give him the same net pay after everything had been paid (tax etc) so it may appear he ends up taking a pay cut but with no management to pay he will still be fine.

        • What Hamilton feels his worth is does not matter, he is the seller. The market value is determined by what the buyer will pay. Hamilton’s move to Mercedes was just as much a move away from McLaren. As I recall one of his sticking points with McLaren was over the trophies.
          Mercedes would have won the championship, in 2014, without Hamilton. The Mercedes was the star of 2014, will be again this year and the odds of it being the car to beat in 2016 are pretty good. So the question the Mercedes board members will be asking is “do we need Hamilton or are we better off with Bottas and $45 million more profit”. For Wolff that would put about $15 million in his pocket. Lauda is a shareholder as well.

          • Well written and exactly what I was thinking. I learned a long time ago that something is worth exactly what someone will pay for it, not what you want to get for it. I’ve watched houses sit on the market for years because the seller thinks it’s ‘worth’ $xxxx and they are only offered $yyyy. It’s called market value.

            Hamilton is a good driver, but he needs Mercedes more than they need him; if I were Mercedes I would play hardball; they are the best game in town and will have no trouble filling an empty seat.

            And Fortis, Hamilton is not the ‘face’ of F1 except to you and other fanbois. Some of us have different ideas about that but I will not try to convert you, as you can believe what you want. Conversely, let me have my thoughts and don’t try to convert me; you’re sort of treating this like religion.

          • Vettel had to suck up being at least the third best paid driver when he was winning his third title. It’s a trade off for being gifted a dominant car.

            It’s not as though Mateschitz couldn’t have afforded it – but he obviously felt he could afford to take the risk of Sebastian walking

  2. Are McLaren ever going to turn the wick up on that car? Or is that it’s top speed?? Long season ahead for Jenson by the looks of it. He probably should have retired. At least Alonso has the excuse of a broken brain.
    There’s the real story sussed. Alonso crashed on purpose to avoid having to trawl around with that Lada engine in the back of his car for two years plus!!

  3. Apparently Fred has tweeted a video of him speaking and thanking fans for the support and said he would update about his progress

    • It’s called the Lewis effect, gets people talking.

      His situation is interesting though, I thought Lewis cared about winning but it seems money is ranking higher on his agenda, shame… I figure Bottas will fill in by the end of 2015.

      • Rubbish – It’s much more about how much the team VALUE a driver when negotiating a contract and is reflected in their salary. McLaren tried playing hardball and lost. Lewis is trying to get a figure that he feels he is worth – now 50 mill a year is a tad too high even i have to say. But to say he cares more about money than success is simply untrue – it’s what people said when he moved from macca to merc, now look at where he is. The salary a driver gets is about much more than just the face value – it also reflects how much the team would like the driver and what they consider him to be ‘worth’.

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