Massa “never gives you room” – Hamilton

F1 Fanatic round-up

In the round-up: Lewis Hamilton discusses his run-ins with Felipe Massa in 2011.

Links

Top F1 links from the past 24 hours:

Hamilton on new McLaren, Massa and fighting Button for world title (James Allen)

“We often found ourselves close together and [Felipe] Massa is a difficult driver to pass because he never gives you any room. But it?s not something to over-dramatise. I have nothing against him.”

BBC Radio 5 Live on Twitter

“I am delighted to welcome James Allen to the 5 Live F1 team!”

Pippa Mann: ‘The big thing in a crash is to relax’ (The Independent)

“There is no reason why a woman can’t race in Formula 1. You have to be incredibly fit but you have to be very fit to race IndyCars. In Formula 1, because they have power steering, the steering weight, in terms of sheer brute strength, is actually fairly light. The IndyCar steering weight is pretty heavy because there is no power steering. When I drove a Formula 1 simulator I was shocked at how light the wheel felt.”

Kimi Raikkonen: “It will be nice to get back to racing” (Lotus)

“Sometimes you hear some nonsense and sometimes you hear nice things. The main thing is that coming back is what I wanted and I have a good opportunity with the team so I’m happy.”

Schumacher: Mercedes just needs a small step (GP Update)

“I’m sure Mercedes and I will be successful. We just need another small step and then we can make it to the top.”

Kingfisher Airlines in default, a non-performing asset: SBI (The Times of India)

“State Bank of India, cash-strapped Kingfisher Airlines’ largest creditor, has called the Vijay Mallya-led air carrier a non-performing asset.”

Why politics will take centre stage in F1 2012 (Autosport, subscription required)

“Concorde permits teams to make preparations for a breakaway series from January 1, although, saliently, they are prohibited from making any public statement to this effect until after the finale of the 2012 world championship, save for responding to direct media enquiries from July 1, 2012 onwards.”

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Comment of the day

Chalky on the dilemma faced by drivers like Sebastien Buemi:

He?ll have to be careful he doesn?t end up with a Pedro de la Rosa type of career too if Mark Webber stays or is replaced by someone else.

Part you envies F1 drivers. But then imagine you get to F1, and you find that no matter how hard you try you are always that small percentage off being spectacular.

What do you do? Keep going blindly hoping that you?ll get sponsorship to keep you in F1 or do you resign to the fact that you?ll have to go into some other category.
Or drive like a madman and wait to get lucky in a FW14B.

Only a few will ever be spectacular, but Red Bull are a top team and should rightly be only picking top drivers.
Chalky

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On this day in F1

Stirling Moss won the non-championship New Zealand Grand Prix 50 years ago today. It was his first time at the wheel of a Lotus 21, and he won by well over a minute and a half in very wet conditions.

John Surtees was the only other driver to finish on the lead lap, the first of a trio of Coopers including Bruce McLaren and Roy Salvadori.

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132 comments on Massa “never gives you room” – Hamilton

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  1. SoLiDG (@solidg) said on 6th January 2012, 0:21

    I have to say when I was watching the season review dvd, I indeed felt Massa gives any space. He needs to learn he’s not the fastest driver (by far).

    • SoLiDG (@solidg) said on 6th January 2012, 0:22

      *doesn’t* give any space that is

    • Mike (@mike) said on 6th January 2012, 0:26

      Is how fast he is relevant?

    • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 6th January 2012, 0:40

      He needs to learn he’s not the fastest driver (by far).

      If he has a position, then he has the right to defend that position. The only time he is obligated to move over and let a faster car through is when he is being lapped.

      • mcmercslr (@mcmercslr) said on 6th January 2012, 0:58

        The only time he is obligated to move over and let a faster car through is when he’s being lapped

        Or when fernando alonso is behind

      • BasCB (@bascb) said on 6th January 2012, 7:22

        True enough, you do not have to give up a position. But in the same way that its often faster for a car being lapped, or to let a much faster car by instead of fighting, it often makes sense to consider weather keeping the position at all cost is the best thing to do to finish the race in a good positoin.

        Maybe Massa is too desperate to hold on to those positions, knowing deep inside that he is not as good as he was at the end of 2008 and in 2009 currently.

      • Casanova (@casanova) said on 6th January 2012, 9:05

        If he has a position, then he has the right to defend that position. The only time he is obligated to move over and let a faster car through is when he is being lapped.

        True, but there’s a big difference between “moving over and letting someone through” and “giving them space”. Its the difference between Massa letting Alonso through in Germany 2010, and Alonso giving Webber space through Eau Rouge, or Vettel space through Blanchimont, in 2011.

        I think what Hamilton is referring to in the article quoted above is the sort of courteous defence that the FIA referred to in the clarification a couple of days ago:

        Any driver moving back towards the racing line, having earlier defended his position off‐line, should leave at least one car width between his own car and the edge of the track on the approach to the corner.

        Giving space is something a good driver does to avoid having an accident (something both Hamilton and Massa seem to struggle to appreciate). It doesn’t mean rolling over like a blue-flagged backmarker.

    • Guccio (@concalvez00) said on 6th January 2012, 17:01

      Where did you get the dvd from ?

  2. Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 6th January 2012, 0:26

    “We often found ourselves close together and [Felipe] Massa is a difficult driver to pass because he never gives you any room”

    It’s not Felipe Massa’s job to make you look better than you are, Lewis. If you can’t get past Massa, that’s your problem – if he has the position, he has the right to defend it. You can’t just expect him to move over.

    • brxtr (@broxter) said on 6th January 2012, 0:39

      Why are you suggesting that he was inferring that?

      • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 6th January 2012, 0:47

        Because he clearly thinks Massa does not give him enough room to let Hamilton pass. Why should Massa leave room for Hamilton do get through? That kind of defeats the purpose of defensive driving.

        • I like potatoes said on 6th January 2012, 0:59

          It’s a case of how the quote is reflected in the article or headline. I remember Massa told SPEED’s Will Buxton he thought Massa was the toughest guy to pass other than Schumacher. He said that as a compliment. So if he says here that Felipe doesn’t leave any room, then that’s essentially the same sentiment, but taken to mean something else because of the spin placed on it.

          • it shows going round the track is not the only time drivers need to attempt to avoid a ‘spin’

          • Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 6th January 2012, 7:51

            Massa told SPEED’s Will Buxton he thought Massa was the toughest guy to pass

            I think there should be a different name in there somewhere!

          • sato113 (@sato113) said on 6th January 2012, 11:11

            Hamilton told Massa he thought Will Buxton was the toughest guy to pass

          • Ru_BD said on 7th January 2012, 11:35

            Hamilton told Massa he thought Will Buxton was the toughest guy to pass Ithought it should be like this “Hamilton told Will Buxton that massa was the toughest guy to pass” ……………. and BTW “Prisoner Monkeys” true as hell………….. :-)

          • Ru_BD said on 7th January 2012, 11:45

            Hamilton told Massa he thought Will Buxton was the toughest guy to pass

            I thought it should be like this “Hamilton told Will Buxton that massa was the toughest guy to pass” ……………. and BTW “Prisoner Monkeys” true as hell………….. :-)

    • Estesark (@estesark) said on 6th January 2012, 1:08

      It can be interpreted as either a compliment or a gripe, but regardless, he was just stating something which is widely believed to be true.

      To suggest that Hamilton expects people to move over for him is nonsense.

    • BasCB (@bascb) said on 6th January 2012, 8:37

      PM here you do much the same as those tabloids you like to look down on by not using the full quote to highlight a point you wanted to bring out to support your view of why Hamilton is no good there.

      The full quote reads

      “We often found ourselves close together and Massa is a difficult driver to pass because he never gives you any room. But it’s not something to over-dramatize. I have nothing against him.”

      Indeed, it shows how these two have been vying closely for years now, in 2007, in 2008 and ever since, they have been more or less close on track, and have turned a bit into the rivals (for Alonso was there earlier, beat Schumacher and now has more or less grown and even offers kind words for Hamilton).

    • sato113 (@sato113) said on 6th January 2012, 11:13

      @prisoner-monkeys i think hamillton is referring to when he’s making the move on massa THEN massa doesn’t give enough space, and they crash…

    • damonsmedley (@damonsmedley) said on 6th January 2012, 15:29

      The trouble with Lewis is that he expects people to move over whenever he risks a lunge. If people start letting him through when he tries these dangerous moves, Hamilton will learn that he can get away with it and no-one will be able to stop him without causing an accident. A few examples of Hamilton making half-hearted (or just plain stupid) overtaking attempts include the pass he made into turn 1 on Button in China, and the pass he made on Schumacher in Monaco. In both cases, he didn’t get alongside the driver at all. He just stuck his front wheel somewhere near the rear axle of the car he was trying to pass and then waited to see if they’d see him and let him go. On both occasions, it would not have been the fault of the driver ahead if they’d turned in on him, as anyone would expect that a driver would pull out of a move if they weren’t fully alongside by the turn-in point.

      And then there were his moves on Massa and Maldonado in Monaco, and then that ridiculous bit of driving in India where Massa “turned in on him”.

      • Yeah on your example above, Schumi made the same move on Hamilton on the same place and Hamilton gave him room to pass, but of course for a Hamilton-hater like you such scenes are not referred to ….. Keep hating mate!

      • Guccio (@concalvez00) said on 6th January 2012, 17:06

        Why you always complaine about Hamilton ?, you need to chill out men, i tell you!

      • lewymp4 (@lewymp4) said on 6th January 2012, 20:23

        Hamilton’s overtaking move at China on Button, you regard that as being stupid…..hmmmm…..I believe that most fans would consider that as being……racing!

        http://vimeo.com/22777153

        If Lewis would have done the following, there would have been a outcry from certain segments, for him to be banned from the sport.

        http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xem8h4_belgium2010-vettel-crashes-into-but_auto

      • matt90 (@matt90) said on 6th January 2012, 20:34

        Ridiculous, The passes on Button and Schumacher were textbook, and I’d say that Maldonado, had he been respectful enough, would have given room the same way as Schumacher. On that last point I admit that I may be wrong though, as the camera views weren’t particularly revealing. Complaining about two very good overtakes seems bizarre though.

        And the Massa turn in bit- Hamilton was well over half way up the inside. If you turn across the front of a driver in that situation, you are going to crash. If you give the space the other driver has earned by getting that far up the inside, then that is good racing (on both parts).

        Hamilton has been dodgy on occasion this year, but you’re arguing that by using 3 examples that show the exact opposite, and another that is at least debatable.

        • Mike (@mike) said on 7th January 2012, 2:21

          It takes two to tango, and more often than not Hamilton is one of them.

          • tvm (@) said on 7th January 2012, 3:15

            Yeah and it takes a race drive to get on the podium and more often than not it isn’t Massa.

          • Mike (@mike) said on 7th January 2012, 3:58

            -.-

            Again… Does that have anything to do with overtaking?

          • matt90 (@matt90) said on 8th January 2012, 20:36

            Didn’t say he wasn’t- but the examples Damon gave were ones where Hamilton was at no fault other than that he was making passes. I’m not saying Hamilton hasn’t got himself in trouble this year. For example, I think he was less at fault than Button in Canada, but obviously putting his car there was still risky and dependent on Button seeing him (which he didn’t).

          • Mike,
            Can’t pass a speed bump without driving over it.

    • lewymp4 (@lewymp4) said on 6th January 2012, 18:25

      That’s true Prisoner Monkeys……you can’t expect Felipe to just move over……except if your Fernando Alonso!

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EvJ6Ri7yXH4&feature=related

      • Adam Tate (@adam-tate) said on 6th January 2012, 23:59

        I knew the Massa comment would cause a firestorm on here. Yes the guys are rivals, sometimes fiercely such as 2008 when fighting for the championship or this past year, when they were both trying to salvage mediocre seasons.

        But they’ve patched it up. Hamilton was once again just referring to Massa as a tough competitor. He knows people will make inferences to how he feels about it, but he didn’t say anything against Felipe outright.

    • Franton said on 8th January 2012, 22:50

      Yes yes yes … we get you don’t like Hamilton either as a person or as a driver.

  3. Estesark (@estesark) said on 6th January 2012, 1:02

    I never hugely liked or disliked James Allen’s commentary for ITV, but I know a lot of people really hated him with a passion, so it will be interesting to see what sort of reaction he gets with 5live. I think the radio format might suit him, and he obviously realises that the race audiences are going to increase next year.

    • Thinking back I didn’t like him that much at the time, but he is much much better than Legard. So it’s quite a good decision really seeing as Croft and Edwards are not available for 5 live.

    • George (@george) said on 6th January 2012, 17:56

      I never minded him too much, you have to remember he was the guy that took over from Murray Walker, they were always going to be tough boots to fill.

      I think he’ll be good on radio, he can make dull periods more exciting, and he has great F1 knowledge.

  4. TheNikii (@thenikii) said on 6th January 2012, 1:34

    And yet again the only memory about Verstappen that pops into my mind is Brazil ’01. And he’s done it again. In a way.

  5. OOliver said on 6th January 2012, 2:09

    Lewis is right.
    Massa causes avoidable accidents. Instead of making the attempted pass difficult, he uses his car like a barrier which is stupid. The net result is he scores zero points when he could have scored much more.
    If he did that all season his net score will be zero. Of course his team will be sympathetic and blame the other driver, but the outcome in a championship will be a resounding failure.

    Schumacher got past Hamilton at the hair pin because Hamilton saw him and decided to move away to preserve his car. Schumacher made his move while being further behind than when Hamilton made his attempt on Massa.
    Hamilton had every right to block Schumacher and had the advantage, but he knew it would have been costly to the team so didn’t offer any resistance.
    A superior mind will know whent its beaten and live to challenge another day.
    Lesser minds take desperate actions to stay ahead.

    • sandy (@sandy) said on 6th January 2012, 2:18

      yeah like what hamilton did to maldonado in the same race??

    • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 6th January 2012, 8:41

      Instead of making the attempted pass difficult, he uses his car like a barrier which is stupid.

      No, that’s called defensive driving.

      • OOliver said on 6th January 2012, 12:25

        There is a difference between defensive driving and recklessness.
        In defensive driving you block the part before the attempt is made.
        Recklessness is blocking a speedng train.
        Massa did the same thing to Button in Australia, because there was as escape route, we didn’t have a big accident.
        When you see a car already committed and alongside, there no longer exist an option for defensive driving rather an opportunity for recklessly promoting an accident.

        • Mike (@mike) said on 6th January 2012, 13:35

          There’s always two drivers involved.

          India (or was it Korea?) is fresh in our minds and he should have given Hamilton more room. However on the whole he is no better or worse than any other driver when it comes to being stubborn.

      • BBT (@bbt) said on 6th January 2012, 15:53

        Instead of making the attempted pass difficult, he uses his car like a barrier which is stupid.

        No, that’s called defensive driving.

        No, it is stupid driving, ‘hit me or don’t pass’ there is a big difference to defensive driving. its not touring cars

      • Franton said on 8th January 2012, 22:52

        No, that’s called “causing an accident”.

    • electrolite (@electrolite) said on 6th January 2012, 14:58

      I think Massa could take a leaf out of his teammate’s or even Nico Rosberg’s book. If a car behind you is much faster, and battling them lap after lap will hinder your race, then it’s best to give them room to overtake you, if they can, so you don’t slow down your own race holding them off.

      Now I obviously don’t mean to say that you should never defend your position…that would be completely sterile, completely boring, ridiculous of course. Felipe’s a fiery driver, and a few moments of wisdom like that this season might have got him into the top 5 he never really troubled..

    • MJ (@mjf1) said on 6th January 2012, 18:02

      I don’t see why people like to argue on this Massa-Hamilton issue so much. Both are at fualt for most of the incidents, rarely is the case when only one was responsible.

      Hamilton likes to make risky aggressive overtaking attempts, in doing so he risks being taken out of the race or getting his car damaged by the driver he is trying to overtake.

      Massa defends very aggressively and in doing so he risks having the driver trying to pass him crash into him.

      Each drive has to make his own decisions on how aggresively they overtake or defend knowing that the more aggressive they are the more risk they take on crashing into another driver or getting crashed into.

    • SupaSix-1 said on 9th January 2012, 15:04

      Well said.

      Yes…it has been shown by top drivers/fighters like Schumacher & Hamilton in Monaco that you can fight hard BUT you can also give space & race cleanly on one of the most tightest tracks on the calendar.

      Schumacher’s dive into the hairpin and Lewis giving him the room showed the class – and vice versa into turn 1 when schumacher gave Hamilton the space – shows that these guys wont play dirty when the game is up.

      If you go back to monaco 2011 – after the race DC & Brundle admitted after seeing more footage that they did ultimately blame Maldonado for slamming the door shut too late on Lewis. And Anthony Davidson very strongly felt that massa played dirty – anyone could see that after watching the footage at the hairpin.

      Maldonado has proved himself to be a calamity and how he didnt get banned for spa is beyond me for his vicious & deliberate actions. As for massa..its been obvious for a while that he is full of resentment towards Lewis.

  6. sandy (@sandy) said on 6th January 2012, 2:16

    Massa drove within the rules when it came to”blocking” hamilton..even the penalty he recieved in india was laughable..its not written in the rules that drivers should make it easy for them to be overtaken…massa&hamilton certainly belong to the same line of thinking when it comes to this..

  7. sumedh said on 6th January 2012, 3:29

    One way of looking at Felipe-Lewis collisions is to say Felipe doesn’t give you room. Another way of looking at is to say Lewis drives up the inside into a disappearing wedge. Depends on how you see it.

    Personally, I think Lewis needs to be less flamboyant when it comes to overtakes. One thing I have noticed is he never overtakes from the outside. He always goes for the inside line and hopes that he will be able to out-brake the other driver.

    • dragoll (@dragoll) said on 6th January 2012, 7:33

      That is exactly the reason why I think Massa shuts the door on Hamilton, because he is predictably coming down the inside. Lewis in my opinion needs to work on race craft a little more. I wonder if the lack of race craft can be attributed to being dumped in a race winning car in his debut year in F1? Perhaps other drivers are forced to learn race craft in deficient machinery to get the most out of it?

      • You seem to be forgetting the racecraft that allowed him to Overtake Raikonnen’s Ferrari at the 1st chicane at monza from out of the blue and used great skill to compensate for carrying too much speed into the corner entry by inducing a little oversteer. Or the racecraft that allowed Hamilton to make a pass on rosberg on the outside of the chicane at Melbourne. People have short memories, Hamilton is an exciting driver, he has pulled off some excellent overtakes, most of which were at a time when overtaking was extremely difficult. He’s still one of the best overtakers in the sport, just go back a few years to see it, he’s just had one season where he’s had several clashes, some his fault, some not, some just racing incident. Some ppl are so short sighted, you’d sing his praises if the moves had come off ok. Love him or hate him, it’s far more interesting to have someone who’s not afraid to make a move.

    • McLarenFanJamm (@mclarenfanjamm) said on 6th January 2012, 9:00

      @sumedh Ah, but he did attempt it on the outside of Button in Canada, and we all know how that turned out ;)

      Fair enough, if the driver in front defends the inside line you can’t attack up there, but if the driver chooses to defend the inside line and leaves a gap then he’s entitled to go for that (providing he can actually make the apex without hitting the other driver).

      @dragoll I wouldn’t say that Lewis’ racecraft is poor, he had a bad season admittedly, but that’s about it. Plenty of montages on youtube of him showing how good a racer he is.

    • sid_prasher (@) said on 8th January 2012, 10:07

      Totally agree on the first section…another thing to consider in analyzing these accidents is how many other drivers made their pass in those locations (where the 2 collided).

  8. Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 6th January 2012, 7:22

    “Concorde permits teams to make preparations for a breakaway series from January 1, although, saliently, they are prohibited from making any public statement to this effect until after the finale of the 2012 world championship, save for responding to direct media enquiries from July 1, 2012 onwards.”

    I think this is going to get a bit messy – how many journalists are going to try and lead the teams into admitting a breakaway series is in the works when there is no truth to it?

  9. Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 6th January 2012, 8:17

    Further indications Bruno Senna could drive for Williams this year:

    http://twitter.com/f1fanatic_co_uk/statuses/155201102625771520

    • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 6th January 2012, 8:38

      Bruno Senna at Williams?

      Sounds utterly tasteless if you ask me.

      • Dobin1000 (@dobin1000) said on 6th January 2012, 9:42

        Would you have thought it tasteless if Jacques Villeneuve had ever driven for Ferrari? It is almost like saying “My uncle died in a car accident driving a Ford. Therefore I will never drive a Ford car in my life!”.

        Unless of course your reasoning has nothing to do with Ayrton Senna and I have missed something else which has lead you to that conclusion…

        • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 6th January 2012, 9:52

          Would you have thought it tasteless if Jacques Villeneuve had ever driven for Ferrari?

          We’ll never know. But I would have to say I probably would have found it tasteless.

          Unless of course your reasoning has nothing to do with Ayrton Senna and I have missed something else which has lead you to that conclusion…

          Do you want a more pedestrian reason as to why I don’t think Senna is an appropriate choice for Williams? Here: I don’t think he’s good enough for Formula 1.

          • Dobin1000 (@dobin1000) said on 6th January 2012, 10:02

            My reference to there being another reason was purely acknowledging that I may have wrongly jumped to the conclusion that Ayrton Senna’s death was what made you think it was tasteless.

            Personally, I don’t feel that way – Bruno shouldn’t need to restrict his career based on what happened to Ayrton, and if his only chance of getting a drive is with Williams and he wants to then fair enough for him. If his family have any ill-feeling towards Williams still then he shouldn’t have to suffer if he doesn’t feel the same way.

        • RBAlonso (@rbalonso) said on 6th January 2012, 15:34

          @dobin1000 and @prisoner-monkeys, I think that if Villeneuve had driven for Ferrari it would be a lot more tasteful than if Senna drove for Williams. I agree with PM that Senna in a Williams sounds wrong mainly because Senna and Williams is ful of bad memories. Fighting tooth and nail with them for seasons and then only driving 3 races is, obviously, tragic. Villeneuve however, was acknowledged as a driving god loved by everyone at the Maranello and Italy. So if Jacques had chosen to drive for Ferrari I think it would evoke more positive memories than Bruno in a williams (of the exact same colour!). It would be interesting to see if you agree!

          • Dobin1000 (@dobin1000) said on 6th January 2012, 15:52

            Of course Villeneuve and Ferrari is a much more established connection than Senna and Williams, but I would hardly say it was “full of bad memories” as you put it. When he died he was starting to drag a relatively poor car towards the front and showing exactly what he could do. He didn’t have any real animosity himself with anyone at the team or when he was racing against them for McLaren – at least nothing compared to Prost and FOCA/FIA.

            Apart from the crash (and Villenueuve was driving a Ferrari when he died) the only bad memories are from the aftermath – none of which had anything to do with Ayrton himself and were not to do with driving – which is why I don’t think it would be tasteless for Bruno to drive for the team.

            I am not saying you are wrong to think it is tasteless, but I just don’t feel the same way.

          • Dobin1000 (@dobin1000) said on 6th January 2012, 15:54

            Plus there is the possibility that Bruno could exorcise some of the ghosts if he manages to make a sucess of it at Williams.

      • damonsmedley (@damonsmedley) said on 6th January 2012, 15:32

        I don’t think it’s tasteless at all. It’s time to move on. Williams are a very different team now and I don’t agree with the Senna family in not wanting him to drive for them. Besides, Senna can’t afford to pick and choose at this stage in his career.

      • sid_prasher (@) said on 8th January 2012, 10:05

        Tasteless only if you believe that Williams were responsible in any way for the death of Ayrton…

    • Deurmat (@deurmat) said on 6th January 2012, 10:04

      I don’t understand it who is this?

  10. Chalky (@chalky) said on 6th January 2012, 8:31

    In Formula 1, because they have power steering, the steering weight, in terms of sheer brute strength, is actually fairly light. The IndyCar steering weight is pretty heavy because there is no power steering.

    So we all know that Trulli won’t be going to Indycar when he finishes with F1 then. lol

    • John H (@john-h) said on 6th January 2012, 8:36

      Haha. Good one!

    • vjanik said on 6th January 2012, 9:39

      he was complaining about a power steering system that gave him no feel. he said he was detached from the experiance and not able to feel the edge of grip that is so important to extract the most from the car and yourself. this suggests that the power steering was either too powerful or wasn’t transmitting enough information from the wheels. (comparing a Kia to a BMW steering feel)

      So I don’t think his problem was a lack of strength in his arms or the inability to steer properly. I doubt that driving an indy car is tougher than driving the Lotus F1 car.

    • TimG (@timg) said on 6th January 2012, 11:05

      Trulli made his F1 debut in 1997. Following the driver-aides ban for 1994, power-assisted steering wasn’t permitted in F1 from 2002. If he couldn’t cope without power steering, he probably wouldn’t have made it through his first five years in F1.

      As @vjanik points out, Trulli’s complaint is about lack of feel, not that the steering is too heavy. Riccardo Patrese had a similar issue with the Williams FW14B in 1992 – he couldn’t get a feel for how much grip would be available so lost out to Nigel Mansell, who operated much more on blind faith that the car would stick when he needed it to.

    • AndrewTanner (@andrewtanner) said on 6th January 2012, 13:08

      @chalky Ker-ching!

  11. McLarenFanJamm (@mclarenfanjamm) said on 6th January 2012, 8:55

    Fairly calm comments so far this morning considering the top story in the round-up.

    As ever it comes down to individual opinions and judgements based on drivers you support and drivers you don’t. But, at the end of the day, last season Lewis had the equipment to be ahead of Felipe in pretty much every race. He didn’t utilise the equipment and put himself in a position where he had to race against one of the better defensive drivers and regularly came to blows. Regardless of who’s fault it was, he shouldn’t have been there.

    In terms of the new Mclaren seeming “far superior to last year’s car” that may be the case, and for all the statistics of “red bull not having the same advantage as 2010″ we all know that Vettel still had some performance in reserve at near enough every race. Like Korea, for example, where he put in a final lap about 2 seconds quicker than the previous fastest lap of the race, set 1 or 2 laps before by Hamilton. To stand any chance of beating Vettel and Red Bull regularly, McLaren really need to produce something that is spectacular. Red Bull won’t be standing still either and Newey will be searching for every available point of downforce that is left on that car.

    Fighting Button for the WDC is a nice thought, and would be pretty fantastic, but I just can’t see anyone but Vettel taking the title next year. Again.

    • Slr (@slr) said on 6th January 2012, 8:59

      I agree with pretty much everything you’ve said here.

    • BasCB (@bascb) said on 6th January 2012, 9:27

      Yeah, Vettel surely did keep enough in reserve he can dig into if needed. let us hope he will have to dip into that far more often in the coming season.

      McLaren seems to know where they are heading with their car, which is good. Let us hope they turn out a really good car that is fastest at part of the tracks. And Ferrari could make good on their promises to build a great car as well, for the first time in 4-5 years after they shed their over-cautiousness.

      But do not doubt for a moment, that Newey will have new interesting thoughts on what to do to get the car optimised now, withouth the exhaust blowing (or using it in a different place for the little advantage it brings). Just look at how he adapted the platform to fit a DDD in 2010 after the 2009 car had only been updated to fit it with quite a lot of work. The Red Bull will not be far off the pace then, if not stealing a march on the others again.

      • Dobin1000 (@dobin1000) said on 6th January 2012, 9:44

        One time he had to really dig in (Canada) he came up short. I also hope he has more races this year where he is under that sort of pressure and he can show his grit.

        • McLarenFanJamm (@mclarenfanjamm) said on 6th January 2012, 12:54

          I also hope he has more races this year where he is under that sort of pressure and he can show his grit.

          or lack of it, depending on your allegiance ;) @Dobin1000

        • Mike (@mike) said on 7th January 2012, 2:25

          In Canada, it’s laughable to suggest Seb could have done anything better than second.

          As talented as Vettel is, the Mclaren was just much quicker at that stage, and Button would have got him down the last straight as Vettel wouldn’t have had enough gap. (Which is why he was pushing so hard).

    • Mike (@mike) said on 6th January 2012, 13:42

      They spent all of 2011’s pre season saying Red Bull wouldn’t have such an advantage as well. :D

  12. infy (@infy) said on 6th January 2012, 9:51

    Only weak drivers give you more than enough room to pass them. Massa may not be quick, but at least he knows how to defend.

    Lewis on the other hand will dive into a corner without thinking about it properly. If he crashes, then at least he knows that next time the drivers ahead will jump out of the way so they dont have to retire.

  13. antonyob (@antonyob) said on 6th January 2012, 9:55

    Massa’s looks like a little boy scared and is certainly out of his depth at a top team now. Its a shame for him, the head injury seems to have cost him some instinctive fluidity, his driving is disjointed, uneven and he seems to be reacting to situations rather than anticipating them.

    Its a fine line and Lewis certainly wasnt at his mercurial best but he could still outdrive the car and his wins this season were no gimme’s. i certainly dont believe Alonso & Lewis wouldve had those coming togethers.

    The further MAssa gets from his 2008 peak, the more he realises that was his one chance for the WDC, the more desperate he will become. Its time to put the poor guy out to pasture before something happens he and ferrari will regret.

  14. vjanik said on 6th January 2012, 10:00

    In this sense Massa and Hamilton are like Senna. As mentioned several times by Martin Brundle in the commentary, Senna used to put other drivers in situations where either they back out of it, or they have a crash. When you have two drivers who think this way on the same piece of tarmac, they will almost always crash.

    I think a more mature way of racing is shown by the overtake that Webber did on Alonso into eau rouge. It was voted the best overtake of 2011 and wouldn’t have happened if both drivers did not give each other room. Alonso could have just turned in on Webber and there would have been a huge crash. Imagine if Webber was making this move on Massa…

    Yes, drivers have the right to defend their position, but not at all costs. Racing is also about respect and patience. Drivers should be able to look at the big picture of the entire race/championship, rather than mindlessly going for each gap.

    Dont get me wring I like the way Hamilton races, but wish he was better at judging these situations so that we saw less retirements from him. Hopefully 2011 was a one-off and both Massa and Hamilton will pick up their game next season.

  15. sato113 (@sato113) said on 6th January 2012, 11:29

    people, the BBC have their season review on iplayer! (uk only)
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b018zvng/Formula_1_2011_Season_Review/

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