#F1 Daily News and Comment: Monday, 18th May 2015


A Daily Round up of Formula One news, inside whispers, opinion and comment. Today,

WRT wins record breaking Nürburgring 24h

Scott Dixon wins Indy 500 qualifying

Williams puts a number to it

WRT wins record breaking Nürburgring 24h

a4c520b433d3405db3591e07d6a7d6fdThe Belgian WRT team won the 2015 edition of the Zürich Versicherung 24 Stunden vom Nürburgring using the all new Audi R8 LMS, piloted by Christopher Mies, Edward Sandström, Nico Müller and Laurens Vanthoor. After 24 hours of hard racing the Audi crossed the line a record breaking forty seconds before the BMW Z4 GT3 of Marc-VDS with Maxime Martin, Lucas Luhr, Markus Palttala and Richard Westbrook. The Falken-Tyres Porsche 911 GT3 R piloted by Peter Dumbreck, Wolf Henzler, Martin Ragginger and Alexandre Imperatori clinched third place. The margin of victory surpassed the old record of 53 seconds from 1993.

The first half of the race was dominated by changing weather conditions and three teams crashed out while leading the race. The first to suffer this fate was the Schubert BMW Z4 GT3 (Dominik Baumann, Claudia Hürtgen, Jens Klingmann, Martin Tomczyk). Forty-three year old Claudia Hürtgen was once considered a potential female entrant into F1, but she was wrecked by an opponent during the 1993 F3 race at Monaco while running third. The resulting injuries sidelined her for almost a year until she came back in 1995 to win the Austrian Touring Car championship. At the Nürburgring she became a victim of the jump at Pflanzgarten. Two hours into the race, while leading, her airborne BMW landed on a wet patch and spiralled out of control and straight into the Armco.

The second victim was the Frikadelli Racing Porsche 911 GT3 R of Sabine Schmitz, Patrick Huisman, Patrick Pilet and Jörg Bergmeister, which also crashed out of the lead. Frenchman Pilet exited the Karusell in a fashion that’s not necessarily considered common workplace practice and totalled the #30 car on the run-up to Hohe Acht when he collided with a Mercedes SLS 7 hours into the race.

The next leader was claimed by the “Green Hell” at 01:30 in the night when last year’s winning entry of Phoenix Racing (Christopher Haase, Christian Mamerow, Rene Rast and Markus Winkelhock) also became a victim of the jump at Pflanzgarten. Mamerow was admitted to the ICU of Adenau Hospital, but by the end of the race it was clear that except for “a hell of a lot of bruises”, according to team mate Rast, the German was out of danger.

From then on the WRT Audi and the Marc-VDS BMW traded the lead several times to bring the total of lead changes to 35 – another record.


Scott Dixon wins Indy 500 qualifying

Dixon-Indy-500-Qualifying-IMS-Kent-Featured-620x264New Zealander Scott Dixon has won a tumultuous qualifying for the 99th Indy 500 race. With Monaco next weekend, the Indy 500 and the Le Mans 24h on June 13/14, the three crown jewel races of motorsports will be held in the upcoming weeks. The Indycar authorities had to reduce turbo boost after three incidents of cars getting airborne at over 200 miles per hour.

The provisional grid features four former F1 drivers: Justin Wilson in 6th, who provided the best placing for a Honda-powered car, Sebastian Bourdaix in 7th, Juan Pablo Montoya in 15th and Takuma Sato in 27th position. The two female entrants qualified 19th (Simona de Silvestro) and 28th (Pippa Mann).


Williams puts a number to it

Everybody knows that the so called “Green F1” has driven up the costs for the teams, but so far the teams and manufacturers were reluctant to tell exact numbers, something that Williams have now changed. WilliamsF1 financial director Alan Kinch told the Independent that the new engines are the biggest part of raising the costs by about 28 Million Euro (that’s twenty million funny-L thingies for those on her Majesty’s Island).

The change from V8 engines to the new, and widely unloved hybrid power units has doubled the costs of putting a loud bit in the car, according to Kinch.


31 responses to “#F1 Daily News and Comment: Monday, 18th May 2015

  1. I object to the Monaco F1 ‘race’ being called one of ‘the crown jewels of motorsport’.

    • Why? Because Lufthansa Flight 44 has never won it? It’s one of the iconic races of this world. It’s always been considered the ultimate goal to win Monaco, Le Mans and Indy.

      BTW. Graham Hill comes closest. Won Monaco and Indy, came second at Lemans. Montoya is the other one who won two of them.

      • It has nothing to do with Lewis dispite your obsession with him. 😆

        It’s simply not a good place to go race car racing.

      • Its the connection with the past that makes Monaco plus its the one track where fans can get really close to the action. I think it was in 55 that a car left the track and ended up in the harbour,add this to just how close the walls are and you have a track which matches the drivers skill and threatens to end your race if you make just a one inch mistake. That said,in this modern F1 you can be left with a race that is stale. That’s not a reflection on the track but on just how good the current drivers and teams are. There is very little room for a mistake to happen as the teams have become so damn good,the drivers are prepared and the current time slot tends to give us a dry race(bring on el nineo) so its the statement correct? Is it still the crowning jewel?…I am not so sure anymore,the fly away races like Singapore are closing in on the prize but maybe Monaco just pips it for shear style and opulence

        • Drivers who have won 2/3 events of the Triple Crown:

          Tazio Nuvolari: Monaco GP, Le Mans 24 Hr

          Maurice Trintignant: Monaco GP (2), Le Mans 24 Hr

          A. J. Foyt: Le Mans 24 Hr, Indy 500 (4)

          Bruce McLaren: Monaco GP, Le Mans 24 Hr

          Jochen Rindt: Monaco GP, Le Mans 24 Hr

          Juan Pablo Montoya: Monaco GP, Indy 500

        • Interesting info there.. Hill was lucky JYS broke down with 10 laps to go in the ’66 Indy 500, while Andretti and Villeneuve both finished 2nd at Le Mans for the Alternative crown (F1 WDC), Mario being beaten by the McLaren F1 GT!

          Clark finished 3rd in the 1960 LM24hrs, his team-mate Salvadori winning in ’59 with the same car (Aston Martin DB1). The only F1 WDC/Indy 500 winner in the same year (1965), if only Monaco didn’t clash that year..

          Andretti and Foyt both won Indy 500, Daytona 500, Daytona 24hrs, Sebring 12 hrs, and LM24hrs in the top division.. Imagine if they had committed to full F1 careers! Montoya could enter Le Mans with Penske… surely they should!

      • The Monaco race is being seen as the most boring race of the season and therefore it should no longer be eligible to the title Crown Jewel and I think for once commenters were referring to that instead of #44 ;-). Some seem to forget that if Monaco was removed from the calender the Triple Crown would no longer be possible… boring racing or the Triple Crown difficult decision.

        Btw. According to Wiki Graham Hill did win the Le Mans race and as a result is the only person who have won the Triple Crown (From Wikipedia: “As his F1 career drew to a close he became part of the Matra sports car team, taking a victory in the 1972 24 Hours of Le Mans with Henri Pescarolo.”)

      • Monaco is one of those races I’ll watch even if I know it’s more than likely be a boring race. Cos you’ve always got the chance of something unexpected happening to spice it up. Be it rain or car failures.

        Which makes me wonder, how well will the cars do given they have to follow each other closely in most sections before blasting through the tunnel. We will see overheating brakes if the weather is good and the temperatures are high ? Or we will see special monaco setups with detuned power units and bigger brake ducts.

      • FH is right. Monaco, in my opinion, is one of the most iconic GPs on the Formula 1 calendar and in all of motorsport. There are many people who would debate me though. The layout of the course is difficult, coming out of the tunnel into the light, and how many drivers have had their GPs end in Monaco because of the slightest of errors. I’ve heard driving at Monaco compared to driving around your living room.

        I would have liked it if Graham Hill was able to win all three races. He is one of my favorite F1 drivers along with Damon.

  2. “The change from V8 engines to the new, and widely unloved hybrid power units has doubled the costs of putting a loud bit in the car, according to Kinch.”

    The thing is, either you want real engine innovations and the costs will be high or you run with cheap obsolete engines.

    I’d rather have rules that limit the advanced aerodynamic setups and both solves the overtaking problems & greatly reduces the advantage of wind tunnels (reducing costs). Aerodynamic innovations don’t tend to translate to road cars anyway.

  3. Graham Hill is the only one to win all 3, right? Montoya is the only other to come close.
    J. Villeneuve was f1 champion and indy 500 winner but didnt win monaco, Jim Clark never competed in the monaco GP. Mark Webber has a good shot to make it 2/3 at Le Mans this year. Porsche is looking quite good, althought Webber’s Porsche seems to be breaking down all the time…

    Whats this about btw?
    Didnt Lotus get snubbed at the start of 2013 over a active/passive suspension debate?
    And how come this is published on F1.com? Ferrari thinks/knows every other team already adopted this trick?


    Let the best motorracing month of the year commence!

  4. It must be just me, but I quite like the Monaco GP and I think the extreme driving challenge it presents definitely allows for it to continue as part of the Triple Crown of Motorsport.

    Like the Indy 500 is to oval racing, and the Le Mans 24 Hr is to endurance racing, the Monaco GP is one of the most, if not the most, extreme driving challenges representative of its discipline of motorsport. It requires absolute concentration and perfection at the limit, in all applications of controlling the car.

    The fact that it presents as a boring race occasionally is neither here nor there for me in the face of the sporting achievement of winning it; as is the case in winning one of the other two races of the Triple Crown.

    That’s why I have a massive respect for Graham Hill…

  5. Never really been a fan of the ‘race’ at Monaco. I admire the skills required to be fast around those streets but as far as racing goes it’s just an over the top way of playing follow the leader.

  6. I think Monaco is great because:
    1 – You have to be rich to live there, so plebs are missing.
    2 – You have to be a bit crazy to drive round streets flat out in a F1 car.
    3 – You need to be mentally tough to concentrate for 2hrs.
    4 – You need to be mental…..oops!
    5 – All the beautiful people go to see and be seen.
    6 – You don’t need waders to get through the mud.
    7 – Driving errors have consequences.
    8 – Sponsors love the place, and F1 needs sponsors.

    • Mmm. Sponsors not loving Monaco much these days. Much more ‘big business’ around the F1 weekend is being done in Singapore.

      SKY reported last year, the big Thursday night parties had died a death – just two being thrown – and one was Vijay’s.

  7. As far as ticket sales in Austria, could it have something to do with all of Red Bull’s complaining about current state of F1 (i.e.: power units, lack of noise, Renault’s inability to produce a competitive power unit)? It seems like every other day the motorsport outlets have another article with Red Bull (Dr. Helmut Marko or someone connected with Red Bull) complaining about some aspect of F1. I think that it may be turning people off to the GP and Red Bull’s products. I have heard that Dietrich M. is thought of as being like Hitler in Germany.

    As an Austrian, I want to see the GP succeed and thrive because it’s good for the Styria region and Austria. I also support Red Bull because of the good that they have done with Wings for Life and how it has benefited paraplegics like myself. I worry that all of the negative publicity that Red Bull has been getting lately will do long term harm to the Austrian GP and the Red Bull brand.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.