In the round-up: Bernie Ecclestone says a budget cap is a good idea for F1 but the top teams oppose it.
Top F1 links from the past 24 hours:
“You could install a mandatory budget for all teams – on the basis of the smaller teams – but they [the big teams] don?óÔé¼Ôäót like it and fiercely fight against it. […] I would welcome it. Yes, I think it could happen.”
“I think Mark has had a good winter. I think he has a good pre-season and I think he goes to Melbourne with a spring in his step – which wasn’t the case last year. He is in a good frame of mind and hopefully he can have a strong season.”
“In no other sport are you treated like an idiot for daring to watch it, rugby union commentators don?óÔé¼Ôäót feel the need to explain a scrum every time a ball?óÔé¼Ôäós knocked on; tennis pundits don?óÔé¼Ôäót describe what a double fault is; but F1 TV producers make sure that we are given a 10 minute segment about drivers having to use both available tyre compounds. F1 fans are treated as if they?óÔé¼Ôäóre new to the sport, and it happens every season.”
Comment of the day
Alex on Caterham’s prospects for the year ahead:
I wish them the best of luck this season, but I fear the midfield will remain ?óÔé¼?ôa tightly packed group of teams just in front.?óÔé¼?Ø Even if one or two teams have a poor weekend, Caterham will have to beat a lot of ?óÔé¼?£established?óÔé¼Ôäó cars to take that elusive first point.
You brought up KERS and obviously that?óÔé¼Ôäós a useful addition, but I can?óÔé¼Ôäót help but remember how much trouble it caused the established teams in its first season ?óÔé¼ÔÇ£ compromising the aerodynamic package and arguably worsening the ?óÔé¼?£clean air?óÔé¼Ôäó lap times even as it gave them an advantage when wheel-to-wheel.
KERS technology has progressed since then and their unit is an off-the-shelf system which should be basically reliable. However those packaging issues remain and it will only add to the complications Caterham is facing as they try to catch up to what are ?óÔé¼ÔÇ£ by now ?óÔé¼ÔÇ£ quite old and ?óÔé¼?£stable?óÔé¼Ôäó rivals with a lot of testing laps under their belts.
I?óÔé¼Ôäóll judge their season a success if they keep improving their car through the year, and begin to hit the 12-14 spots with regularity. Any more than that and I?óÔé¼Ôäóll jump for joy, though, because I love to see a plucky underdog who?óÔé¼Ôäós prepared to put in hard yards of solid work and take the long route to success.
From the forum
- An exciting WTCC race at Monza – Yvan Muller spins but goes on to win as a pigeon eliminates the early leader
- A list of sportscar teams and drivers on Twitter
- One for all you gamers – the screenshot thread
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Happy birthday to Daniel, Garf, Michael Griffin, Monkzie and nitin24!
On this day in F1
The 1967 Race of Champions – a non-championship race run over two heats and a final – was won by Dan Gurney in his Eagle-Weslake.
Lorenzo Bandini was second for Ferrari in the race at Brands Hatch. Tragically, Bandini was killed in the next round of the world championship at Monaco.
Image ?é?® Red Bull/Getty images