Horner plays down Red Bull-Hamilton connection

F1 Fanatic round-up

Lewis Hamilton, Sebastian Vettel, Barcelona, 2012

Lewis Hamilton, Sebastian Vettel, Barcelona, 2012

In the round-up: Christian Horner says it’s “difficult to envisage” Lewis Hamilton joining Red Bull.


Top F1 links from the past 24 hours:

Red Bull deny Hamilton interest (Daily Telegraph)

??I think that it’s difficult to envisage Lewis in our team. I think he?s comfortable in the environment he is in and we?re certainly comfortable with the two drivers we have.”

Finally back to racing! (Ferrari)

Fernando Alonso: “We definitely still need to improve a lot, working on our understanding of the F2012, adapting my driving style to a new car which, with the loss of aerodynamic downforce at the rear and the new Pirelli tyres, is a bit harder to drive. We know in which direction we need to go in terms of car development and that?s an important step.”

Marussia backs budget cap revival (Autosport)

Graeme Lowdon: “If this is the international championship of spending, then most teams are not equipped to excel in that field, and it is not clever ?ǣ nor very relevant to the business world our sponsors live in. So anything that promotes cost control is a good thing.”

Pit lane to football pitch: Fernandes’ plans for sporting success (CNN)

“I think [Vitaly Petrov] is as good a driver as Trulli, but he obviously brings a Russian commercial element.”

F1 2012: can anyone end Sebastian Vettel’s grip? (The Guardian)

“If the secret of sustained success in Formula One is creating the right combination of designer and driver, then what we are witnessing is a phenomenon to match that of Jim Clark and Colin Chapman, whose professional relationship in the 1960s established a standard to which all their successors aspire.”

Vijay Mallya pumps in $32 million into Force India (NDTV)

“Sahara Force India team principal Vijay Mallya has pumped in $32 million into his Formula One team ahead of the season opener in Melbourne on Sunday.”

Analysis: Force India VJM05 (Scarbs F1)

“By keeping the radiators and sidepod volume high and narrow, the resulting undercut in the sidepods flank creates the double floor effect and allows more airflow to pass directly over the top of the diffuser. Unlike Toro Rosso?s rounded interpretation of the undercut sidepod, FIF1?s has much flatter sides, particularly in the coke bottle region near the exhausts; the sidepod shape is particularly slim.”

Marussia not worried about KERS – Glock (ESPN)

“We have said that our focus is right to first get rid of the four seconds of aerodynamic deficit, before we worry about the money and the manpower we need for five tenths with the KERS.”

Labor MP Kelvin Thomson takes a swipe at Bernie Ecclestone’s ??billionaire bogan’ daughter, Tamara (Herald Sun)

“One thing I am absolutely sure of – there are better ways to spend $50 million, year in and year out, than bankrolling Bernie’s billionaire bogan.”

Comment of the day

Which of the McLaren drivers will do best this year is a subject that divided F1 Fanatic readers right down the middle yesterday.

Some tipped Hamilton to bounce back:

He had a tough season in 2011, but I expect him to return to form and edge out Button.

If he?s on form more often than not, then he should beat Button convincingly. Hamilton has better raw speed in my opinion.

Others reckon Button will exert superiority again:

Button has the upper hand here. I very much doubt that Hamilton?s cleared his head yet, and we all know that speed is no longer everything.

He?s confident, does well on new tyres, never make mistakes… Hamilton will probably improve from catastrophic last season, but that won?t be good enough to beat Button.

What do you think? You can cast your vote on them and all the other drivers here:

From the forum

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Happy birthday!

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On this day in F1

Fernando Alonso won his first race for Ferrari two years ago today in the Bahrain Grand Prix.

Sebastian Vettel led much of the way before suffering an exhaust failure.

Image ?? Jamey Price/F1 Fanatic

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66 comments on Horner plays down Red Bull-Hamilton connection

  1. maxthecat said on 14th March 2012, 12:13

    Just curious as to why people think @alo_oficial is the real deal? It seems unlike him to me, he really doesn’t seem the tweeting type.

  2. The Limit said on 14th March 2012, 12:48

    Christian Horner really can’t say anything else at this moment, but I think people are mistaken if they think all is rosy in the Hamilton/McLaren partnership. I simply don’t believe the consensus of opinion that suggests Hamilton’s poor form in 2011 was done to just ‘girlfriend trouble’ alone.
    Ofcourse it is in McLaren’s best interests to imply that both their drivers are happy and that there is no ill feeling, but we have had this propaganda before from them. In 2007 McLaren tried, unsuccessfully, to convince the world that there was harmony between Alonso and Hamilton. It was abit like telling the passengers on a sinking Titanic that the were not going to get their feet wet, and it backfired terribly.
    I have said in past posts that Hamilton enjoyed a close working relationship with Ron Dennis, something I am convinced does not exist with Martin Whitmarsh. Naturally this is my opinion and I am only speculating, but the arrival and good performances of Jenson Button recently I think have done alot to undermine Hamilton’s standing with the Woking team.
    Lets not forget that when Lewis was crowned champion back in 2008 he had the world at his feet. He had played a major factor in both of his first two F1 seasons, driving a car that was arguably the class of the field at times. To some, it seemed inevitable that Lewis would enter 2009 as not just the bookie’s favourite but eventual champion, a multiple champion and dominant force, just as his idle Aryton Senna had been two decades before.
    It didn’t happen. 2009 for Hamilton was a big letdown! The car was nowhere near the performance levels of his previous two machines, and although the car in the last two seasons has been better, Hamilton has failed to factor into the championship in either 2010 or 2011.
    To make matters worse, Red Bull and Sebastien Vettel have started to dominate. If anybody reminded me of Aryton Senna last year it was Vettel and not Hamilton, especially during qualifying! Sebastien destroyed the grid in 2011 in a way Lewis would have relished, disappointment compounded by being beaten by Jenson Button in the sister McLaren
    I can see Hamilton quite easily driving a Red Bull in the future in his fortunes at McLaren don’t change soon. I can also see him relishing trying to outdo Vettel in equal machinery also, as its in Hamilton’s nature to be seen as the best of the best. He admitted recently that by now he had envisaged winning three championships, which I found very telling that he had planned out his life in such detail. This is a man who is never satisfied and will never be satisfied with just one title to his credit, and titles only come to those with fast cars and Lewis knows this.
    Ambition aside, Hamilton’s biggest target when the lights go out on Sunday will almost certainly be setting about destroying Jenson Button’s confidence early. This will not be easy, but when Lewis is in the mood he is a handfull for any driver on the grid , as Alonso discovered in 2007. He has to remind all at McLaren why Ron Dennis’ interest was aroused back in 1995 by a young kid from Stevenage claiming ‘he would drive for Ron’s team and become champion’. In essence, Lewis has to race this grands prix like he did five years ago and start the season consistenly and aggressively. The world is tired of talk about how good Hamilton is, they want to be reminded by the man on the racetrack.
    If that happens, then Hamilton joining Red Bull ‘may’ become more than just a rumour!

    • Robbie (@robbie) said on 14th March 2012, 13:17

      @The Limit…I agree.

      I too think LH could end up at Red Bull…I don’t agree with Prisoner Monkeys that this rumour is only about LH’s fans wanting him in the best car after a ragged year last year. I believe it was during a race last year that MB and DC suggested that perhaps it would be good for LH and for Mac for them to part ways at some point in the future.

      I also agree that sitting as we are at the cusp of the new season Horner is not going to say anything other than that he is happy with their current driver line-up, and Mac would say the same thing. But is Horner really happy with MW? And/or is Horner really interested in hiring a driver who will probably challenge SV more than MW has been able to? Or in fact does Horner say through one side of his mouth there is racing between the teammates at Red Bull, both of them with an equal opportunity, when in fact the truth is that life is easier for him if SV isn’t truly challenged, and a tough decision needn’t be made during the season as to who to emphasize for the WDC chase. Nor would there be as much points grabbing by a ‘lesser’ teammate to SV.

      There’s no question that the fans deserve and should be seeing a true fight between the best two gladiators that a top team can put in the cars, and there is no question that while being better for the show for the fans it does make the likes of Horner’s job harder when a tough decision might have to be made as to who to emphasize for the title if it comes down to the math dictating that.

      Mac has proved they are willing to have 2 proven WDCs as teammates…Red Bull still has to show us they are willing to do the same, and I don’t mean a proven WDC and a potential but unproven one. The terrible MS/Ferrari era proved how the formula of hanging one driver out to dry to the extreme, from race one of every season, can help a team ‘win’ and compile numbers…but it wasn’t racing in the pinnacle of racing and the fans were robbed. It should be about the fans and the show and the sport, while understandably at the same time being a business…it just shouldn’t be all business and from that aspect I just hope that LH, as a WDC, is always on a team with another WDC if at all possible.

    • Schumi the Greatest (@schumi-the-greatest) said on 14th March 2012, 14:55

      Have to agree with this, I did comment a number of times last year that I dont think Whitmarsh is as pro Hamilton as Dennis was. Ron Dennis always promoted fair racing in his team but as Coulthard stated in his autobiography he always psychologically backed Hakkinen over DC. I think Dennis saw Hamilton as the next guy to really lead Mclaren like Senna and then Hakkinen did. My feeling is that Whitmarsh, having signed Button, would rather see Button do better as it reflects well on his management if his new signing came in and starts being the main point scorer for the team.

      Cant take anything away from Button last year he was consistent, especially in the 2nd half of the season…but I cant see Button in a 1 on 1 fight with Vettel coming out on top..he doesnt seem too have that X Factor to drag the car to victory the way Hamilton/Alonso can and Schumacher used to.

      Lewis needs to sort his head out..stop trying to win the race in the first 10 laps and allow the race to come to him more…if he’s got decent shaped tyres in the last 10 laps there’s a good chance he can take places just like Button did last year. But he needs to get back to his 2007 and I’d say first half of 2010 form and consistently keep scoring podiums, if he can do that he will be there or thereabouts end of season.

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