F1 links: Fernando Alonso on Ron Dennis

Posted on | Author Keith Collantine

Alonso pays tribute to Dennis

Fernando Alonso: “I think we are not best friends, but I think there is respect from each other. We didn’t have a perfect end to our relationship but we know how much he has done for Formula One. When I was young I remember McLaren and I had great respect for him.”

BMW Sauber F1.09 – The countdown is on. Part 2/3.

Another video from BMW previewing the F1.09 – ugly endplates still there from the interim version. Oh dear…

Williams yet to decide on KERS debut

“Williams technical director Sam Michael has hinted that the team may opt not to begin the 2009 Formula One season with its flywheel-based Kinetic Energy Recovery System, and instead focus on ensuring that their new FW31 is reliable.”

Briatore: KERS is a ‘disaster’

“We have this situation because one team only was really determined to have this programme. We know already that for 2010, with the option of the standard KERS, whatever money we spend this year is for one year only. And in this kind of environment I think it?s completely unnecessary. For sure BMW want to do it and so we will follow because it?s difficult for us to have one competitor to develop a programme and for us not to be part of it because we could lose performance.” Briatore joins Montezemolo in singling out BMW in the row over KERS.

RBS shares plunge on record loss

Can RBS continue to justify sponsoring Williams (and its other sporting sponsorships) when it is suffering so badly?

Williams say budgets for next two years in place

Williams happy with future plans despite loss of sponsorship from Baugur Group and Lenovo, and financial troubles afflicting RBS.

Sam Michael on the Williams FW31

??KERS in 2009 could be worth between 2/10ths and 3/10ths of a second per lap. However, once aero performance converges, KERS could start to become a greater performance differentiator and if the regulations give more scope to the technology, it could be worth anything up to a second a lap and it will be needed to win Grands Prix.”

New Renault gets radical nosejob

“The front wing itself of course features the FIA-templated middle section, but apart from that is a very particular design. The moveable flaps are kept fairly simple, but are more forward than on any other car seen so far. Having these positioned more forward is beneficial for the aerodynamic properties of the whole car, basically for the same reason as increasing the wheelbase would be.”

Hamilton knew Dennis was stepping down

Ron Dennis: “After the BBC Sports Review of the Year programme was filmed in Liverpool on the evening of Sunday December 14, Lewis and I flew to Washington DC to visit ExxonMobil, one of McLaren’s principal partners. On the flight we spoke openly, as we always do, and I went through my plans with him in minute detail. So he was fully aware of Martin’s and my plans. “The only aspect Lewis may not have been fully aware of in advance was the exact timing of my announcement, because when he and I spoke together on the plane I didn’t tell him I was going to go public on the day we’d be launching the MP4-24.”

A look into McLaren’s sidepod front

“McLaren have taken a fairly predictable approach as far as the front of the sidepod goes. During the course of 2008, the team often partially closed the radiator air inlet of the sidepod as reduce the car\’s overall drag on circuits that require less cooling. Since the new engines will require even less cool air than last year due to the drop in maximum rpm, the smaller inlet could be made a standard feature of the new car. As a result, the undercut could be smoothed to improve its interaction with the new, smaller barge board.”

Cost-cutting in F1?

“The fear in F1 circles, apart from the costs to the teams and the other members of the F1 circus, is that fans will stop coming to races now that there is less money about because the price of the tickets added to expensive hotels and air fares make the investment necessary too much to make it enjoyable. In some sports, hotel prices are carefully regulated to make sure that the hotels do not bite the hands that feed them, but in F1 it seems that the hoteliers want not just the hands but the arms as well.”

F1 ace Lewis loves fast food

‘Lewis, who is dating Pussycat Doll Nicole Scherzinger, 30, added: ??My favourite restaurants are Pizza Express and Wagamama.??’ Hey, if that comes up in a pub quiz, you’ll thank me.