Patrick Head steps down at Williams F1 team

F1 Fanatic round-up

In the round-up: Patrick Head will step down from his F1 role at Williams next year.

Links

Top F1 links from the past 24 hours:

Williams co-founder Head ends F1 role (Reuters)

“I am not going to be directly part of the Williams Formula 1 programme next year.”

Jenson Button via Twitter

“Patrick Head who believed in me as a teenager and gave me a chance in F1 with Williams has decided to call it a day. Thanks for everything mate.”

Will Buston via Twitter

“Just wait for the official end of season F1 DVD. An incredible, never before seen, bit of footage of [Helmut] Marko tearing Jaime [Alguersuari] apart. Just amazing.”

According to Will this was after Alguersuari held Sebastian Vettel up during practice in Korea.

Mark Webber’s F1 win drives 4.8m viewers to the BBC (The Guardian)

Mark Webber’s first win of the season in Brazil had 4.8 million viewers between 3pm and 6.10pm, a 27.2% share of the audience, with a five-minute peak of 6.1 million.”

Formula One takes a step backwards with new TV rights deal between BBC and Sky (Daily Telegraph)

“Its authority will doubtless suffer as a result, as will the popularity of the sport. Those that want it can subscribe to Sky, but the apathetic middle will grow ever more disaffected.”

McLaren gaining confidence for 2012 (Autosport)

Martin Whitmarsh: “I think we had a shocking winter, probably one of the worst winters we have had. We were nowhere near competitive and had not done a race distance before we finished the Australian Grand Prix. That is not how you should start a season. I think we have taken some decisions based on what happened, and hopefully taken some learning from that.”

Jim Rathmann: an appreciation (MotorSport)

“Jim Rathmann won the 1960 Indianapolis 500 after a fierce, race-long duel with Rodger Ward and finished second in the great race three times in 1952, ??57 and ??59.”

Susan Combs U-turns on advancing state money for Formula One race (PolitiFact)

“[Texas State Comptroller Susan] Combs may have been justified in her recent statement that no state money would go to the race in advance. Still, it?s a reversal of her earlier promise.”

Bernie Ecclestone on Austin Q&A: “They never had the money…” (Adam Cooper)

??I was disappointed insofar as [race promoter Tavo Hellmund] had what he thought were partners that could finance the business and wouldn?t let him down. Really, they let him down and they?re trying to steal from him, get him out of it, and do the whole thing themselves.??

Hamilton hints he will extend ‘love affair’ with McLaren (Daily Mirror)

“I don’t think there’s any question of my commitment to the team, so there’s no real rush to have to do anything. I’ll just focus on the year.”

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Comment of the day

Damonsmedley says Red Bull should have been less concerned about the possibility of Vettel’s gearbox failing:

The only thing I wished for is that Sebastian ignored the team. It would have been fantastic to see a battle for the lead and really, Seb had nothing to lose if his car did fail like Lewis? did.

I was disappointed that he did what he was told, but I?m not blaming him. I just don?t understand why Red Bull didn?t let him race when it would make no difference to them if he finished or not, really.
Damonsmedley

From the forum

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to Alex White, Crispin, djdaveyp85, Prisoner Monkeys and Wes!

If you want a birthday shout-out tell us when yours is by emailling me, using Twitter or adding to the list here.

On this day in F1

Michael Schumacher prepared for his F1 comeback by winning Felipe Massa’s end-of-season kart tournament in Brazil.

Massa, who was getting ready to return from injury, won the second leg of the event but Schumacher claimed overall victory:

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59 comments on Patrick Head steps down at Williams F1 team

  1. Icthyes (@icthyes) said on 29th November 2011, 0:05

    Happy Birthday Alex, Crispin, Dave, Wes and Prisoner Monkeys!

  2. dragoll (@dragoll) said on 29th November 2011, 0:08

    I am sad to see Patrick Head leave the F1 arena. Although I’m a Schumacher/Vettel fan, I respected the professional outfit that Frank Williams and Patrick Head ran and took to lofty heights. My vivid memories of the Williams outfit in their hay day was when Jacques Villeneuve, debuted along side Damon Hill and nearly won the AusGP in front of his illustrious team mate, but unfortunately an oil leak saw his debut win aspirations fade away when he had to yield to Hill…

  3. KaIIe (@kaiie) said on 29th November 2011, 0:09

    Sad to see Patrick Head gone, I can’t imagine the Williams garage without him. Really highlights how all those classic figures from 80s, 90s and early 2000s have disappeared or are disappearing… instead of Jean Todt, Flavio Briatore and Patrick Head we know have guys like Christian Horner, Eric Boullier and co.

  4. celeste (@celeste) said on 29th November 2011, 0:27

    So yesterday I missed out the race because I was on a job related travel out of my country… so I was a little surprise when today while I was waiting for my plane to go back home I saw Lotus/ Caterhan team members on the airport… :) I was really happy… didn´t have the courage to talk to them but it was a nice surprise…

  5. Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 29th November 2011, 0:29

    While it’s sad to see Head go, I also find it quite interesting that he is going now. I believe Adam Parr and Patrick Head were lobbying for different drivers in 2012, and I think Head might have been backing Raikkonen (with Parr favouring Adrian Sutil). The negotiations with Raikkonen seem to have broken down completely, so I wonder if that failure had anything to do with Head’s departure.

  6. newnhamlea1 (@newnhamlea1) said on 29th November 2011, 0:34

    Keith, i believe it’s Will Buxton, as opposed to Buston

    • Scalextric (@scalextric) said on 29th November 2011, 5:53

      Yes.
      I wish Will hadn’t mentioned this yet in case Marko somehow manages to get this removed from the DVD before we get to see it. Probably can’t as it’s rather late in the production process. [Mr. Buxton recorded some of the soundtrack so he got to see the footage early].
      Check out Will Buxton’s blog for a transcript of his Speed interview with Mr. L. Hamilton in Brazil.

  7. electrolite (@electrolite) said on 29th November 2011, 0:39

    By Head’s interview on Sunday it seemed as though for the most part he’s going to be sticking around. So whilst his role title and level of authority will change, I think he’ll still have the experience and straight talking opinions on various decisions to offer.

    Those ratings…that’s after both championships have been decided and all British drivers weren’t exactly in the mix for a win. What are the BBC thinking.

  8. MylesW (@mpw1985) said on 29th November 2011, 0:48

    I really just can’t stand Helmut Marko

  9. Eggry (@eggry) said on 29th November 2011, 1:27

    I don’t think Head to go in this situation, but that’s what happened. Surly, he’s the most esteemed engineer in the history of the sport. I hope he’s new role in WHP would help Willams group as well as Jaguar.

  10. MGriffin90 (@mgriffin90) said on 29th November 2011, 2:08

    Happy birthday to Alex White, Crispin, djdaveyp85 and Wes!

  11. wasiF1 (@wasif1) said on 29th November 2011, 2:43

    Happy Birthday to Alex White, Crispin, djdaveyp85, Prisoner Monkeys and Wes.

  12. Shomir (@shomir) said on 29th November 2011, 3:13

    Something tells me Will Buston doesn’t like Jaime Alguersuari…

  13. Calum (@calum) said on 29th November 2011, 4:03

    Following recent reports that Chelsea Football Club want to move away from Stamford Bridge Stadium to a new, bigger stadium at a differant location in London, QPR owner Tony Fernandes has come out and said his team also want to leave their current London home to move to a bigger stadium.

    Chelsea want to leave their 45,000 seat stadium, and Fernandes was quoted saying QPR have a catchment of ’40 to 45,000 fans.’

    However, it is famously known that if Chelsea leave Stamford Bridge, they must leave the Chelsea FC name behind…

    Is Fernandes planning to move QPR to a prebuilt 45,000 stadium, Stamford Bridge after Chelsea move out – perhaps he could take the Chelsea FC name and rebrand QPR! Then QPR could claim all the titles and wins that go with their new name/image! :O

    And the current Chelsea FC would have to rename as something similar to Chelsea FC like “London Chelsea FC” since they can’t keep the name when they leave Stamford Bridge – then the Barclays Premier League had 2 Chelseas! A Chelsea FC (QPR at home in Stamford Bridge) and London Chelsea (Current Chelsea at a new stadium). That would be crazy, unthinkable even! :O

    We’ve all seen crazier though…. :P

    —————————————
    ***Of course this is just nonsense playing with coincidences, never would happen in ever as Chelsea will stay put until name rights get sorted out and they can sell Stamford Bridge’s land for housing if the new ground is built.***

  14. Journeyer (@journeyer) said on 29th November 2011, 6:21

    1. I’m conflicted with Head’s departure. While he is surely a stabilizing influence in the team and will always be regarded as one of the all-time great engineers, perhaps they are doing this to allow the new people to come in with new ideas and allow them to gain the confidence to work on them and grow in their roles outside of Head’s shadow.

    2. So Jaime joins Scott Speed in the Toro Rosso Hall of Shame. If it costs him his job, we now know why.

    3. Politifact on F1Fanatic. I never thought I’d see the day…

  15. Girts (@girts) said on 29th November 2011, 6:39

    I totally support the view that ‘real racers don’t need team orders’ but I believe RBR did the right thing this time. We don’t know exactly how serious the gearbox issue was but if Horner told the truth then it just made no sense for Seb to kill his gearbox while desperately trying to stay ahead of his team mate. I think the team, I mean, not just dr. Marko, Newey and Horner, but the whole team would feel very disappointed if they lost a podium because of a fight between Seb and Mark. OK, crashing while fighting for a position is one thing, it’s just bad luck. Deliberately ignoring a technical problem is something else. And right because it had no impact on the championship titles, I see nothing wrong with what RBR did, I would have done the same thing.

    • graham228221 (@graham228221) said on 29th November 2011, 8:01

      Plus keeping Seb in the race meant Webber finished 3rd, a point ahead of Alonso.

      Not sure that securing 3rd means much to anyone though.

    • Mads (@mads) said on 29th November 2011, 8:14

      @Girts
      I can only agree.
      The battle was lost anyway. There was absolutely NO way he would keep Webber behind for more then maybe 10 laps. But there were 40 or so laps left. It just wouldn’t be possible.
      Also, just because it wouldn’t matter if Vettel had a DNF in terms of the championship, a 1-2 finish in the final race is still a much better result to go into the winter on then a win and a DNF. 1-2′s are rare and it would be stupid to risk throwing that away, for nothing.

    • bosyber (@bosyber) said on 29th November 2011, 10:53

      Heh, feel compelled to respond @Girts – You are right, that it seems a bit silly to expect any team to not ask a driver to keep the car alive until the flag, if they can.

      It is an interesting contrast to Hamilton who went for it with a broken gearbox.Heh, feel compelled to respond @Girts, I

      But their situations differed. Vettel had trouble with those gears, but could preHeh, feel compelled to respond @Girts, Ivent the problem getting worse by short-shifting.

      McLaren, in contrast, admitted they knew early in the race that Hamilton had a problem, an oil leak, and nothing they or Hamilton could do would cure it or prevent it getting worse. So they let him race for as long as it lasted, as the only thing they could hope was that it would last the race, though it didn’t.

      I think maybe the in this case Vettel did need to be reminded of his teams orders. He didn’t want to be, but he initially clearly underestimated the problem while they could see the telemetry.

      • bosyber (@bosyber) said on 29th November 2011, 10:56

        huh, weird half double post, sorry for that, this is how it was supposed to look:

        Heh, feel compelled to respond @Girts – You are right, that it seems a bit silly to expect any team to not ask a driver to keep the car alive until the flag, if they can.

        It is an interesting contrast to Hamilton who went for it with a broken gearbox.
        But their situations differed. Vettel had trouble with those gears, but could prevent the problem getting worse by short-shifting.

        McLaren, in contrast, admitted they knew early in the race that Hamilton had a problem, an oil leak, and nothing they or Hamilton could do would cure it or prevent it getting worse. So they let him race for as long as it lasted, as the only thing they could hope was that it would last the race, though it didn’t.

        I think maybe the in this case Vettel did need to be reminded of his teams orders. He didn’t want to be, but he initially clearly underestimated the problem while they could see the telemetry.

        Vettel getting his 2nd made sure the team had another 1-2 chalked up to complete the year, another podium for Vettel, and gave Webber 3rd in the WDC, if they care. Clearly reasons for the team to want him to finish.

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