Force India chasing fifth in 2012 ?ǣ Di Resta

F1 Fanatic round-up

In today’s round-up: Paul di Resta says that Nico Hulkenberg ??should give the team a spark?? for the new season, and that the team are chasing fifth in the Constructors’ Championship.

Links

Top F1 links from the past 24 hours:

Di Resta backing Hulkenberg (Sky Sports F1)

??Paul di Resta has backed Force India’s decision to sign Nico Hulkenberg, saying the German has given the team “a spark”.??

Ben Edwards says BBC would have lost Formula 1 completely but for deal to share coverage with Sky (Autosport)

??New BBC Formula 1 lead commentator Ben Edwards has defended the shared deal with Sky to broadcast F1 in the UK this year, saying that a standalone deal would have been beyond the BBC’s reach.??

Steve Rider urges BBC to show other motorsport as its Formula 1 coverage reduces (Autosport)

??Steve Rider has called on the BBC to broadcast more top-level motorsport in a bid to boost its diminished coverage of Formula 1 this year.??

Martin Brundle via Twitter

??Watch out for two excellent pieces of news regarding Sky Sports F1 this week, with more to follow too.??

Rosberg believes in Brawn (Sky Sports F1)

??Nico Rosberg believes Ross Brawn has what it takes to elevate Mercedes GP to the top of the F1 rankings.??

Follow F1 news as it breaks using the F1 Fanatic live Twitter app.

Comment of the day

We?ve had our first five-star review of the year, for Peter Warr?s memoirs. TimG says:

The Warr/Mansell relationship is already fairly well documented, but Warr?s memoirs will still be worth a read.

As I understand it, Warr and Mansell came from very different backgrounds and were like chalk and cheese ?ǣ they rubbed each other up the wrong way, and that inevitably coloured Warr?s view of Mansell as a driver (it probably also coloured Mansell?s view of Warr as a team manager). There is, clearly, a degree of truth in Warr?s views ?ǣ Mansell always had a bit of a flare for the dramatic and that sometimes failed to serve his best interests. Crashing out of the lead of the 1984 Monaco GP because he pushed too hard, for example, the needless retirement from the 1991 Canadian GP or the fairly daft do or die move that spun him out of the following year?s race.

But those same qualities and willingness to take a risk led to moments like the 1986 British GP victory, or passing Gerhard Berger around the outside of the Peraltada in Mexico, 1990. They?re different sides of the same coin ?ǣ you don?t get one without the other. It didn?t make Mansell a favourite among all the team managers (who generally want someone to bring the car home), but it made him hugely popular with the fans.
TimG

From the forum

Happy birthday!

No F1 Fanatic birthdays today. 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

Five years ago today Renault and BMW revealed their new F1 cars. The former, reigning constructors’ championships at the time, produced the garishly-coloured R27. They ended the season winless and were eventually beaten to second place in the championship by BMW, who scored more than twice as many points as them.

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48 comments on Force India chasing fifth in 2012 ?ǣ Di Resta

  1. Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 16th January 2012, 0:06

    “New BBC Formula 1 lead commentator Ben Edwards has defended the shared deal with Sky to broadcast F1 in the UK this year, saying that a standalone deal would have been beyond the BBC’s reach.”

    Brace yourselves for the inevitable flurry of responses of THEN THE BBC SHOULD HAVE GIVEN UP ON FORMULA 1! GAAAAH! OUTRAGE! SKYSPORTS! BAD FOR FORMULA 1! BAHRAIN! EVIL! in three … two … one …

    • KeeleyObsessed (@keeleyobsessed) said on 16th January 2012, 0:11

      It’s almost as if people don’t want 10 live races on the BBC this year..

      I’m hoping that one of the two ‘excellent’ pieces of news Brundle is describing is to do with a deal with Virgin Media so I can have the races aswell… I’d prefer having the whole season live (as would everyone else!)

    • Jake (@jleigh) said on 16th January 2012, 0:14

      to be fair, we are all fully aware that the BBC couldn’t have held onto F1 if they didn’t share it with Sky. And in a non-outrage, calm way, I will say, the BBC should have given up Formula 1 if it meant completely free-to-air F1 would still be possible instead of having to pay £18 for each race weekend.

    • Magnificent Geoffrey (@magnificent-geoffrey) said on 16th January 2012, 0:18

      People except the reality of the deal now. It’s not going to change and we’re still going to have a disjointed viewership in the UK. Is that better than having no live F1 at all? Of course it is. Does that mean we have no right to be unhappy about the situation? I bloody well think not.

    • Doing the whole 20 races was not out of the BBC’s reach, given that Bernie could easily have forced the BBC to pay for 20 races in 2012 and 2013 whether it broadcast them or not. The BBC might not have wanted to budget for them, but it’s very lucky that Bernie decided to severely bend/break Concorde enough for it to dodge part of the payment it was due to give.

      • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 16th January 2012, 3:01

        t’s very lucky that Bernie decided to severely bend/break Concorde enough for it to dodge part of the payment it was due to give

        Bernie didn’t bend or break the Concorde. He never does – not that it matters, because the BBC and Sky came up with their joint broadcasting arrangement on their own. They’re the ones who found the loophole in the Concorde, not Bernie.

        • PieLighter (@pielighter) said on 16th January 2012, 5:21

          @prisoner-monkeys probably a typo.

          • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 16th January 2012, 6:13

            No, the Concorde specifically prevents Formula 1 from being exclusively broadcast on pay-per-view, and that, where possible, the exclusive broadcaster should be a commercial channel. It does not, however, prevent half the races from being broadcast on pay-per-view and half on free-to-air.

          • Mike (@mike) said on 16th January 2012, 8:48

            @Prisoner Monkeys Quick question. What happens when the BBC’s term runs out?

            A few questions, some might negate each other…

            Does the Concorde agreement force another free to air channel to be found or does Sky get to inherit it so to speak?

            If it was only being shown on Sky, under the current Concorde agreement would an offer by a free to air channel have to be accepted?

            Do you think Sky will be pushing for that clause to be removed when they settle on the new Concorde agreement?

          • PieLighter (@pielighter) said on 16th January 2012, 19:31

            @prisoner-monkeys no, I meant that he probably meant BBC instead of Mr E.

        • BasCB (@bascb) said on 16th January 2012, 13:28

          @prisoner-monkeys, I think you are making more of your knowledge of the concorde argeement than actually at your disposal there.

          And I think you should tone down on defening how there was no other option than this deal. Before you vehemently protest that opinion, have a look at what Steve rider says in an interview I posted in the forum (done yesterday)

          • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 16th January 2012, 13:49

            I think you are making more of your knowledge of the concorde argeement than actually at your disposal there.

            Check out some of the articles from around the Hungarian Grand Prix when the deal was first announced, and the weeks following it, when the fallout from the deal was addressed. Both the BBC and Bernie clearly stated that the Sky-BBC deal was legal because there was nothing in the Concorde prohibiting a split deal between free-to-air and pay-per-view.

          • DeadManWoking (@deadmanwoking) said on 16th January 2012, 21:39

            Excellent post @bascb and the fact that the BBC made no attempt to make a deal with another terrestial broadcaster is highlighted by their own testimomy before The House Of Commons

            ORAL EVIDENCE
            TAKEN BEFORE THE
            Culture, Media and Sport Committee
            BBC Annual Report and Accounts 2010-11
            Tuesday 13 December 2011

            Q122 Chair: Just before we finish, I have one final question. I suspect that you, like members of this Committee, had a very large postbag when the decision was announced about Formula 1 coverage. There has been some dispute about precisely how this decision was reached, and in particular on whether or not you spoke to any other broadcasters other than Sky in reaching a decision, and on where the impetus came from. Was it from the BBC or was it from the Formula 1 association?

            Mark Thompson: The idea of sharing the rights under the remainder of the current contract and of potentially extending that contract was our idea. There was a negotiation that led to all the parties involved in the conversation being happy with the idea. The effect will be to save the BBC well over £150 million between now and the end of the contract-money that obviously means that only half of Grand Prix will be live on the BBC, but it has enabled us to keep a very good position in Formula 1, and to make savings that otherwise might have meant deeper cuts in other services.

            As for the considerations for us, we know that Formula 1 has only fairly recently come back to the BBC; it has been very popular on the BBC. Secondly, we know that Formula 1 fans ideally do not want Formula 1 to be interrupted by advertising, because of the character of the sport. Nor, of course-for the subset of Formula 1 fans who do not have Sky subscriptions-would they, ideally, like Formula 1 to go entirely behind a paywall. I believe that the arrangements that we have reached offer very good value to the licence payer, and the experience of Formula 1 on the BBC will still be very rich. The first Grand Prix next season, when this new arrangement starts-the Australian Grand Prix-will be live on Sky in the very early hours of the morning. There will be a 75-minute highlights package in peak time on the BBC, which we would expect to reach many more people than the live coverage.

            Talking about changing the arrangements in the existing contract and the extension of that contract, all I would say-and I have of course heard the arguments that perhaps this could have been picked up by another free-to-air broadcaster-is that what we have done has guaranteed that a very large amount of Formula 1 will still to be free-to-air to the British public for many years to come. Had we simply stopped the contract and decided to walk away from Formula 1 after that, there was a real danger that all of Formula 1 would have gone behind a paywall.

            Q123 Chair: Both of those things are undoubtedly true, but did you actually talk to any other free-to-air broadcasters?

            Mark Thompson: No, and to be honest I think that I would have already been on the edge of the limits of what it is appropriate to do, in terms of the appropriate separations of sports buyers in the market under the Enterprise Act.

            Q124 Chair: But if you were able to talk to Sky about sharing it, why couldn’t you talk to Channel 4 about sharing it?

            Mark Thompson: We were quite clear that, to get the economics to work for us, it was going to have to be a pay partner, and this was the only pay partner, credibly, whom we thought we could involve in it-indeed, a pay partner who had expressed interest in this very topic of conversation previously. It was an example of a free-to-air pay partnership, which is not by any means unknown in the market.

            Q125 Chair: I am not saying it is unknown, or that you should not have talked to Sky, but even if it was a 10-second conversation, you might have picked up a phone to Channel 4 and said, “Are you interested? Could you possibly pay the kind of money that we are looking for?” They would have said no, but you did not even do that.

            Mark Thompson: It seems to me that it was not required of us, and given that, in a sense, what we were trying to achieve on behalf of the licence fee payer was a significant saving, actually keeping the confidentiality of the process until it was clear whether the thing was viable and whether all parties to it-including, of course, the rights-holder-were happy, militated in terms of doing it the way we did it.

            Q126 Chair: Do you intend to do it for any other sport?

            Mark Thompson: We have already talked about competition and sports rights; our mission, when we are seeking either to extend or acquire sports rights, is to do it absolutely in the way it is done in our industry, which is typically on a confidential and commercial basis, as every other buyer and seller does and expects of counterparties.

            Chair: Okay. I think we should probably draw a line, as it is five minutes to 1 o’clock. Thank you very much for coming this morning.

    • Huron (@huron) said on 16th January 2012, 14:23

      Yes, because it would be better if F1 was completely on a free to air channel, rather than just half of the races. What exactly is so terrible about thinking that?

      PM, get a blog, rather than acting like an F1 “insider” (trawling F1 forums for stories and rumours to relay back here does not make you an insider) and riding roughshod over the comment section of this website. You would be surprised how many people agree with me.

  2. Jake (@jleigh) said on 16th January 2012, 0:09

    I hope one of those Sky Sports F1 pieces of news is that it will be available on Virgin Media for a half reasonable price (less than £25 per month)

    • AndrewTanner (@andrewtanner) said on 16th January 2012, 10:07

      @jleigh Pretty much what I was going to say! Though I doubt Brundle would get excited about that.

      If there is a monthly fee I’ll be very, very surprised.

      Considering I pay ~£25/month for Sky Sports 1-4, I should be paying less than <£5/month for just 1 channel, with plenty of downtime.

      I shouldn't be paying anything more than I am now. I pay more for Sky Sports than Sky customers do!

  3. David-A (@david-a) said on 16th January 2012, 0:10

    THE BBC SHOULD HAVE GIVEN UP ON FORMULA 1! GAAAAH!

  4. Lin1876 (@lin1876) said on 16th January 2012, 0:12

    I think it’s shocking how little motorsport is shown on free-to-air TV in the UK. The BTCC package and (partial) F1 aside, it’s only half-hour higlight slots for the British GT, British F3 and British Formula Ford series at ungodly hours on Channel 4.

    Perhaps STV or BBC Scotland could show the excellent Konockhill club races, for example. It’s Scottish sport, and if about 1000 people are willing to stand in the mud to watch them, then surely they would draw decent crowds.

    But it’s a trend, really. As more major sport move to Sky and ESPN, the networks just don’t replace it. Sticking with Scottish sport (that’s what I know best), when the BBC lost the SPL rights, they could have shown the First Division, which is begging for some – any – TV money, but instead they clutter the schedules with repeats of Bargain Hunt. It sickens me, but I don’t see it changing any time soon.

    • John H (@john-h) said on 16th January 2012, 0:59

      I was braced for a comment about Bahrain being evil but it never came?

      I agree with you, with all the motorport going on in the UK it would be nice to think more would be on free to air, but I guess there aren’t enough fanatics out there unfortunately. On the plus side, at least there’s still plenty of live racing we can attend in person in this country.

    • BasCB (@bascb) said on 16th January 2012, 13:31

      What you say seems to be pretty close to what Steve Rider told autosport in a interview on the Autosport international 2012 event.

  5. Great comment of the day. (When I read that comment earlier, I thought, “That should definitely be comment of the day!) I didn’t follow F1 when Mansell was competing, but everything I’ve learned about him fascinates me. I can certainly see him as a guy who might rub some people the wrong way, especially some team bosses.

    Also, Peter Warr’s memoir has definitely shot to the top of my to-read list!

  6. LexBlair (@lexblair) said on 16th January 2012, 0:29

    i couldn´t help but think about Hamilton while reading the COTD…….

    • Lin1876 (@lin1876) said on 16th January 2012, 0:37

      I was wondering if someone was going to say that. I think the major difference is that Mansell was a hard charger who occasionally overdid it, whereas Hamilton is either on form or isn’t. The effect is much the same results-wise, but the two were different.

      I think it’s also worth noting that Mansell was a fan favourite everywhere he went (even the Tifosi called him Il Lione). Hamilton is a more polarising character, whose impetualnce puts off many people (including myself) off. Both great drivers, but not that similar.

      • George (@george) said on 16th January 2012, 17:42

        Actually I’d say they’re similar in both regards, I’m sure there were times Mansell was off-form (not that Hamilton has been off-form a lot, last season excluded). Their attacking style on-track is similar, and their terrible interviews are also the same.

        Mansell was probably liked by more people, but most people regard Hamilton as the better driver.

    • TribalTalker (@tribaltalker) said on 16th January 2012, 20:48

      Mansell had raw, naked aggression and bravery bordering on madness. Hamilton is a refined gentleman by comparison.

  7. John H (@john-h) said on 16th January 2012, 1:05

    In my opinion hulkenburg is going to consistently beat Di Resta this year. Di Resta seems to be vastly overrated, was he really that good in 2011? The Hulk will also have a point to prove. Will be a great battle that’s for sure.

    • BasCB (@bascb) said on 16th January 2012, 7:43

      Looking forward to it this year, I hope Hulk gets going to prove his point and gives Di Resta a real tough time at it.

      Getting into 5th place would be nice for the team, especially if it means tight battles with Kimi and Romain, with Massa and with both Mercedes drivers regularly.

      I guess their target should be to get on the podium this season.

      • Girts (@girts) said on 16th January 2012, 8:17

        @BasCB I would love to see Massa fight for the title instead of desperately try to stay ahead of Force India :) Other than that, I totally agree with you. I just think that a podium for FI is very unlikely. Reliability of cars is as good as never before, DRS gives the faster cars an additional advantage and the wet races are nowadays either stopped or lead by the safety car before drivers start sliding off the track. That means that FI would need either a very strong car or a car that’s specifically designed for e.g. low downforce circuits (but is pretty useless on the other racetracks) as it was in 2009. Even Mercedes could not score a single podium during the 2011 and I just don’t see how FI could build a car that would be capable of competing with Ferrari.

        • BasCB (@bascb) said on 16th January 2012, 11:28

          Ha, @girts, I would also like Massa to be able to, but my sense of reallism tells me there is more chance of him battling off FI, a Lotus and maybe the Mercedes cars.

          But you are perfectly right, it should not me something they would be disappointed about if they do not make the podium.

          But it should be something they would be looking at achieving (like Mercedes should be looking at getting on the first 2 spots on the podium and Massa should be looking for at least a win).

    • sumedh said on 16th January 2012, 8:58

      On the other hand, I think Hulk is going to lose consistently to Di Resta.

      I do agree that Di Resta does seem to be over-rated (not helped by his continuous harking of how he beat Vettel five years ago).
      But Hulk is even more over-rated than him. That one pole in rain-soaked Interlagos followed by him being dropped for money-man Maldonado has made him the sentimental hero for everyone.

      • John H (@john-h) said on 16th January 2012, 15:33

        Not at all, I don’t rate a driver on whether he gets a pole position in the wet. He showed real promise in his first season but also made some rookie errors. Personally, my judgement is made on the whole 2010 season.

        With Di Resta I get the impression that there isn’t much left to come – but hey, I may be wrong! Either way they will push each other and that will be good for FI.

    • AndrewTanner (@andrewtanner) said on 16th January 2012, 10:09

      @john-h I reckon they will be pretty evenly balanced.

  8. wasiF1 (@wasif1) said on 16th January 2012, 2:39

    Nice to see Roseberg despite been a good driver still showing commitment to the team which haven’t given him too much in the last two year.

  9. Silverkeg (@silverkeg) said on 16th January 2012, 10:31

    I really hope and Believe Force India can get 5th. Lotus (will have to get used to that pretty quick) looked unstable by the end of last year. I am a huge fan of Force India and there progress up the field has hugely impressed me and has been fantastic to watch.
    Although I think it was a mistake to Drop Sutil, I am a fan of Hulkenburg and think it won’t take long for him to put in some strong performances.
    The thing that really impressed me about Force India last year was there professionalism and there Big Team style focus on the little things. They were easily the fastest of the midfield in the pits, Matching the big four on multiple occasions and there reliability was second to none and on par with Red Bull

    All the best for Force India! I hope they will be a force (pun intended :P) to be reckoned with in 2012.

    • BasCB (@bascb) said on 16th January 2012, 11:33

      From this bit of news, it looks like at least the backroom deals side of the Lotus F1 team – Enstone – will not be much less unstable this year.
      But at least it looks like the team will have more stable a driver pairing (based on the presumption that Kimi will stay put).

      Lets hope we see a nice battle between the likes of Renault Lotus, Force India and Mercedes for the 4th-6th spots in the ranking and the occasional chance of a podium for each of them.

  10. Does anyone know what is happening with the driver tracker this season. It was accessed via BBC website. Will it be available for all the races or only the races BBC are covering live? Or will sky have it available via their website?

    • graigchq (@graigchq) said on 16th January 2012, 12:14

      it’s exactly this kind of question that is the reason we’re so upset about the BBC losing the rights (in full).

      I have to say, I enjoyed watching F1 on BBC more than I have done, and partly because of the BBC themselves, and the platform with which to watch on. The BBC iPlayer is an awesome acheivement, and because of that, the showing of F1 fit in perfectly and seamlessly into their portfolio of other programmes. Not least as part of this, the zero advertising on any BBC platform helped to keep F1 as a slick and well produced package we all loved to watch.

      It’s very sad, but hey, who to get angry with? I feel that in all honesty, it is not anyone at the BBC or Sky that is to blame, but one person, and one person only.

      Mr Ecclestone, please hurry up and go away. We all know that F1 has to make money, but when a circuit that was built just a few years ago cannot afford to keep the race going when you can guarantee a multi million dollar profit from it regardless, it’s time to re-realise what the priorities are. Forcing the BBC out of this deal is also your fault, even if indirectly. Hurry up and leave and let someone with new ideas come to the table. Please.

  11. Gary Yogurt said on 16th January 2012, 14:10

    dear procrastinating teams, PLEASE PICK YOUR DRIVERS.

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