Critical words about Canadian track-side marshals
The Canadian track-side marshal’s are facing criticism for what some in F1 consider sloppy work. When Lewis Hamilton’s car was craned away after his practice crash it started swinging so badly, its rear hit the crane and suffered additional damage. “They are the worst marshals on the calendar,” said a Mercedes team manager, who didn’t want to be named.
British photographer Darren Heath reports witnessing an equally poor display when Button’s McLaren was retrieved. “In my twenty-seven years in F1, I have rarely seen such clumsy marshals,” the Brit explains.
Involuntary record for Checo Perez
During last week’s F1 Courtroom Podcast, the Hippo remarked that Checo Perez has earned the honour of having put more mileage on his first ICE than anyone else, because the team doesn’t have the funds to pay for a new one, but the true explanation is even more surprising. Mercedes’ engine factory in Brixworth wasn’t able to produce eight new power units in time. As a result only Mercedes, Lotus and Williams were outfitted with the second unit this year, while Checo was left to fend for himself with the worn-out old one. His team mate, Le Mans winner Nico Hülkenberg, has already been using the second unit since Barcelona after suffering the dubious honour of having detonated the only Mercedes unit so far.
Looking at the wear pattern, Checo’s unit was found to be the most likely to survive another GP and Force India will have access to shiny new Mercedes units in time for the Austrian GP. Toto Wolff explained the delay in manufacturing with injection problems that needed to be sorted before nailing together the second generation Mercs.
The next Courtroom Podcast takes place later today, at 8 pm UK time and you can watch the recording live, by clicking the link on the left side of the Homepage. If you haven’t done yet, please read Tourdog’s excellent #F1 FORENSICS: A MORE DETAILED LOOK AT MERCEDES AND FORCE INDIA PU AND GEARBOX USAGE for more detailed info on Checo’s late engine change.
Fernando Alonso: We should concentrate on 2016
Before the first tests make it clear that the Honda unit is a veritable disaster, the renewed marriage of the former winning combination was making sounds about scoring first wins. That was quickly corrected to wishes for getting near the podium towards the end of the year, when it became obvious that even finishing a race was quite an optimistic expectation.
Fernando Alonso, who could no longer hide his frustration with the asthmatic unit in the back of his car now says the team should write off this season and get an early start on next season’s challenger and wouldn’t mind to start from the pitlane in every race if it helped improving the car. Since both cars are already close to of over the 4 unit limit, that will happen anyway, but due to the absence of any rule changes, his team mate Jenson Button, who took delivery of his 5th unit and the accompanying penalties in Montreal, has a different opinion.
“You can’t simply write off the whole season,” the Brit explains, insisting that with many problems on the 2015 car unsolved, they would simply be taken as additional baggage into the next season.
Manor to become McLaren B-Team?
Already early into the season we reported about the technical cooperation between the Manor GP team and McLaren, which sees the small squad use the wind tunnel of the Woking based team. TJ13 has more than once said that the concentration on a single team hampers Honda’s data acquisition and development. There are now renewed rumours of a switch to Honda for 2016 for the men around John Booth and Graeme Lowdon.
Lowdon told Motorsport.com that although they have a good relationship with Ferrari, the decision for 2016 has not yet been made and all options are seriously considered. Like the combination Ferrari/Haas, Red Bull/Toro Rosso, the team cooperation McLaren/Manor has come under scrutiny because insiders suspect that it could be used by the bigger teams to side-step the 20h/week limit on wind-tunnel time.
Especially Ferrari has been suspected to use the fact that Haas is not yet bound by that limit. After inquiries from Mercedes and Red Bull the FIA inspected Ferrari’s wind-tunnel use, but found nothing that would indicate a breach of the rules.