McLaren will rely on FIA to judge Mercedes’ wing

F1 Fanatic round-up

Michael Schumacher, Mercedes, Melbourne, 2012In the round-up: McLaren say they will “rely on the FIA” to rule on Mercedes’ controversial wing design.


Top F1 links from the past 24 hours:

McLaren trusts FIA on Mercedes wing (Autosport)

McLaren managing director Jonathan Neale: “Mercedes were very quick during qualifying and there is enough YouTube footage of Michael [Schumacher] being very defensive about photographs of the car. But I think we have to rely on the FIA [to make the correct ruling].”

BSkyB denies order to pull F1 story undermines Sky News’s independence (The Guardian)

“BSkyB has denied the decision by its chief executive to order a story to be removed from the Sky News website for 40 hours after a complaint from its Formula One production team posed a threat to the channel’s editorial independence. Jeremy Darroch stepped in after the article, posted on the Sky News website at 6pm on Saturday, caused F1 teams in Melbourne to voice concern to BSkyB’s TV production team, who were in the city covering the inaugural race of the 2012 season.”

Key man issue could stall F1 float (FT, registration required)

“The polite fiction is that the private equity group has a ‘controlling’ stake in F1, acquired for an estimated ??1.1bn in 2006. But whatever the shareholders? register shows, only one man yanks the strings of all the other alpha males involved in this testosterone-saturated contest ?ǣ Mr Ecclestone, the long-standing chief executive.”

Mercedes not keen on Formula One budget cap (The Independent)

Ross Brawn: “As you know we’ve been strong supporters of the RRA, which we think is the intelligent budget cap. We’re still very strong supporters and that’s what I’d like to see going forward, and we’re working with the teams and the FIA to see if we can find further solutions to a resource restriction.”

Why the F2012 is braking down (Sky)

“To minimise its tendency to force the tyre to pull sharply sideways when encountering a bump during cornering load, it needs to be set up with negative camber (wheels pointing outwards at the bottom) so that the cornering pulls the wheel upright. That cures the pull-rod geometry’s sensitivity to bumps but introduces a different problem – instability under braking because when travelling in a straight line the tyre does not have its full tread surface in contact with the track.”

Button proves the doubters wrong (The Telegraph)

“Their respective body language afterwards was striking; Lewis looking stony-faced on the podium. He said all the right things, congratulating Jenson on his performance and thanking McLaren for building a winning car, but he looked and sounded devastated.”

Nico Rosberg: “I also thought he was crazy!” (Adam Cooper)

“[Sergio Perez] complained about me? So maybe it?s nobody?s fault, because I also thought he was crazy! Maybe it?s just a racing incident, and we have to see on the video. It?s a very unfortunate incident.”

Red Bull Made Most Of Challenging Opener (Speed)

Christian Horner: “Malaysia is a considerably different prospect to here. Here it?s short turns, it?s bumpy, there are not a lot of high-speed corners here. Malaysia offers that variance. So I think it will be interesting to see. We expect them [McLaren] to be quick in Malaysia, as well, but hopefully we will be in better shape there than we certainly were here in qualifying.”

Tyre Talk – Q&A with Pirelli?s Paul Hembery (F1)

“Last year people thought that with the hard tyres only Red Bull and McLaren got them to work and get them in temperature, whereas this year the hard tyre is softer, like the medium tyres from last year, and the teams are saying that they can get them working within one lap. So when we get to a race like Malaysia this will be a huge challenge for us, with the choice of compounds for a track with up to 50 to 60 degrees Celsius on the tarmac and a very abrasive circuit.”

Comment of the day

DMC thinks Felipe Massa needs a new team, not a new car:

I think I’ve watched f1 long enough to know there is a lot more to this sport than supposedly having the same car as your team mate. Massa’s car on Sunday looked horrendous. Comparing drivers is sometimes very difficult when you don’t know what is going on behind the scenes.

Look at Button at Benetton he clearly wasn’t happy and he was trounced by Fisichella, but look at him now. Don’t write Felipe off, his talent is still there he just needs the environment to prove it. Sadly I don’t think its in the shadow of Alonso.

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On this day in F1

Alain Prost won the Brazilian Grand Prix 30 years ago today in controversial circumstances.

The race, held in very hot conditions at the Jacarepagua circuit, saw Nelson Piquet and Keke Rosberg finish first and second. Piquet collapsed on the podium due to the physical effort of driving the punishing ground effect cars around a high-speed circuit in high temperatures.

But after the race Piquet and Rosberg were thrown out as the FIA decided their cars were underweight. Their teams, Brabham and Williams, had taken advantage of rules allowed the cars to be topped up with water to run them below the minimum weight level.

Here’s a long video of the race with footage from various sources:

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94 comments on McLaren will rely on FIA to judge Mercedes’ wing

  1. Fer no.65 (@fer-no65) said on 21st March 2012, 0:16

    Felipinho was trounced by Fisichella too, and look at him now!.

    • q85 said on 21st March 2012, 0:23

      fair point.

      fisi pretty much beat everyone up until 05. another great driver in a bad car. and good driver in an excellent one.

      his performance at spa 2001 was excellent.

    • Guilherme (@guilherme) said on 21st March 2012, 0:35


      May I ask why you started calling Massa “Felipinho” recently? No one calls him like that, not even here in Brazil, and it sounds kinda disrespectful.

      • Fer no.65 (@fer-no65) said on 21st March 2012, 1:47

        Um, I don’t intend to be “disrespectful”. It’s just (maybe) that people here call him Felipinho, as a surname only.

        I’ve heard many times commentators refering to him as Felipinho… I’ve read that too. But anyway, if I it sounds offensive, I’ll stop.

        • Felipe Bomeny (@portugoose) said on 21st March 2012, 2:24

          Well, one of Massa’s nicknames is the “Little Brazilian” as is he isn’t of a impressive stature, height-wise.

          Or perhaps he’s “Felipinho” because he’s not as big (in terms of success) as Felipe, the 2008-spec Massa who was World Champion for a couple of minutes.

          Or maybe it just sounds disrespectful because @fer-no65 is an Argentine! (just joking, of course!)

          • nefor (@nefor) said on 21st March 2012, 2:41

            It’s not a throwback to Rubinho being number 2 at Ferrari and now Felipinho following the same path?

          • Fer no.65 (@fer-no65) said on 21st March 2012, 2:42

            I’m not against Brazil, to be honest :P. Love their girls, their football and their beaches. And I actually cheered for Felipe (not “nho”, notice :P!) in the 2008 WC, heh.

          • JCost (@jcost) said on 21st March 2012, 6:25

            “World Champion for a couple of minutes”

            “Muito bom” :)

        • JCost (@jcost) said on 21st March 2012, 6:23

          Hehehe. A quick translation of Felipinho would be “Little Filipe” and some people brand it offensive other would thinks it’s just a lovely touch… who knows :)

      • Horacio said on 21st March 2012, 10:20

        I lived more than two decades in Brazil, and have to agree with Guilherme. I never heard anyone calling Felipe Massa “Felipinho”. And yes, in general Fer 65’s posts about Brazil indeed sound disrespectful.

        • Fer no.65 (@fer-no65) said on 21st March 2012, 11:57

          Read up there. Why would I be disrespectful with Brazil?

          I like your country… so it’s completely the other way round. I’ll stop now, but I tell you, they call him like that in the Latin American coverage…

          I didn’t know it sounded offensive. For me it sounds like a nice surname… but well…

        • Fer no.65 (@fer-no65) said on 21st March 2012, 12:00

          And btw, I never talk about Brazil, so how come you say “in general Fer 65′s posts about Brazil indeed sound disrespectful”.

          Don’t generalize about my posts because I’m never disrespectful to anyone here.

    • raymondu999 (@raymondu999) said on 21st March 2012, 8:45

      I didn’t realize Fisichella trouncing 2 year olds counted :P

  2. Alex W said on 21st March 2012, 0:26

    Bring back Clive!

  3. Carlitox (@carlitox) said on 21st March 2012, 0:56

    Totally agree. I’m a die hard Massa fan since he signed for Ferrari, and I am convinced that his talent is being forced to remain still. My dad and I discussed during the race that had he gone to Sauber in exchange for Sergio Perez he would still have a good car (IMO the Sauber looks very very promising), he would know most of the team (including ol’ Pete) and he would have more freedom. Sure, Felipe’s psychic status is not good because of this, he is being forced to become the next Barrichello. And he will, if he remains with Alonso.

    • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 21st March 2012, 1:05

      It’s kind of a sad state of affairs when a driver only gets bettwe once he moved down the grid …

      • MahavirShah (@mahavirshah) said on 21st March 2012, 6:54

        @prisoner-monkeys I think it’s more a question of comfort. In a team like Ferrari a driver would always be under pressure to perform and carry the expectations of millions of die-hard (and sometimes unforgiving) fans. At the same time (and this has happened before in 2008) the Ferrari does not seem very user friendly and looks a handful to drive. In Felipe’s case he might not be able to adjust to it and thus it might have been better to go to another team. If Sepang turns into a disaster, I think calls for his sacking will become louder.

      • xjr15jaaag (@xjr15jaaag) said on 21st March 2012, 7:23

        I think that it’s a sort of psychological thing after his 2009 Hungary crash, as before that he was really excellent.
        He may say that he’s over it, but I know it takes a long time to get over something that almost cost you your life

    • Tete said on 21st March 2012, 7:42

      You must be Brazilian to say that. Open your eyes and see the reality. Massa is a bad driver, mediocre at best. When piquet( another bad driver) crashed in Singapore and massa took the fuel ring with him, he lost the wdc that day. He is a Ferrari driver because Ferrari likes the guy. A really good thing is that he time is running out. I really use to like him but right now and since he lost the 2008 because of his mistake he deserve to be sacked. I wonder how many good way better drivers havrn’t being able to get into formula 1 or couldn’t continue on it because they didn’t have sponsors or how many of them would have done way more if they would have had that opportunity. Something I have learn from Brasilia s is that they live from the past, senna was the only good driver brazil have ever produced. Look barichello, massa, piquet, piquet jr mediocre at best. And the brasilians think they are the best when they are not. Most of the best athletes in the world are from Spain ( I’m not an spaniard) and yes feliphino el pequeno Felipe needs to be fired. El Es muito dumb

      • xjr15jaaag (@xjr15jaaag) said on 21st March 2012, 7:55

        I’m not actually, and he’s actually quite a good driver: look at the 2008 season, where he outperformed Kimi.
        (I’m a Vettel and Kovalainen fan)

        • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 21st March 2012, 8:05

          @xjr15jaaag – And look at 2010 and 2011, when he was thoroughly out-performed by Alonso.

          • xjr15jaaag (@xjr15jaaag) said on 21st March 2012, 16:28

            Yes, but I’m saying that the main reasons for the supreme domination by Alonso is partly due to the psychological impact of his crash.
            I’m not saying that massa is as good as Alonso, but I am saying that pre-2009, he would have been a lot closer to him than he is now

      • suka (@suka) said on 21st March 2012, 8:48

        I remember him a very talented driver in Sauber back in the day before he joined Ferrari.

        • topdowntoedown (@topdowntoedown) said on 21st March 2012, 11:10

          That’s funny, the only thing I remember about Massa at Sauber was a lot of crashes.

          He only really got “good” once he’d been at Ferrari for a year or so and seen how Schumacher went about things…

          • suka (@suka) said on 21st March 2012, 11:51

            Actually you were right when I think about it again…Something else threw me off when I said it…probably the season 2005 when he was relatively better than his teammate.

      • John H (@john-h) said on 21st March 2012, 10:02

        When piquet (another bad driver) crashed in Singapore and massa took the fuel ring with him…

        That was the team’s fault, mainly for installing that stupid traffic light system. You can’t blame Massa for that, he has to trust his team to do their job at the stops.

      • mark (@markp) said on 21st March 2012, 13:40

        Piquet 3 time world champion. Thank God he wasn’t good he would have won everything.

        • marsianwalrus (@einariliyev) said on 21st March 2012, 14:45

          @markp i think he meant Nelson “Nelsinho” Piquet Jr; Piquet Sr. certainly didn’t drive at the Singapore 2008 GP.

          • mark p said on 21st March 2012, 19:46

            He definatley states at the end of the post Brazil only had Senna that was good and includes Piquet snr and jnr in a list of mediocre at best list at the end of the post. By those standards only Prost Fangio and Schumacher are above mediocre.

    • infy (@infy) said on 21st March 2012, 8:51

      I dont think Massa is any slower than he has ever been. He is driving completely normally. It is Alonso who has grown.

  4. UKFan (@) said on 21st March 2012, 1:45

    There are drivers that are adaptable and others that arent different driving styles suit different eras I think Massa has been well treated in Ferrari, and probably better than the average slower teammate.

    • AndrewTanner (@andrewtanner) said on 21st March 2012, 13:45

      @ukfanatic I think you can attribute that to Massa being accepting of his fate as a number two driver. Having a subordinate driver for Ferrari is probably as important as having a championship challenger.

      • UKFan (@) said on 21st March 2012, 23:28

        I dont like Alonso but at least Im capable of admiting that theres nothing that Massa can do to beat Alonso, Massa was never reckoned as an elite driver and there are reasons for that. Massa had a bittersweet year in 2008 and got alot of support even from Kimi, kimi tried to help Massa, in 09 he had that injury and everyone supported him, what more could have been done? There are at least 6 drivers faster than Massa and that is just F1. Listen you may want to win the lottery but that doenst mean you won it, its out of your hands.

  5. UKFan (@) said on 21st March 2012, 1:49

    that piece by sky is a must read for all Ferrari haters.

    • John H (@john-h) said on 21st March 2012, 10:09

      Why… because it underlines that they have designed a fundamentaly flawed car by trying to be too clever?

      I’ve read the (excellently written) article and if the main problem is the pull-rod front suspension, that is not easily resolved whatever progress they make at the rear of the car because changing to push-rod will require new crash tests.

      Personally, I’m no Ferrari fan but I’d love them to be at the front end of the grid so that we have more teams challenging for the titles. Do you mean Massa and Alonso haters instead should read this article to explain their spins?

  6. HoHum (@hohum) said on 21st March 2012, 1:51

    COTD makes a good point, personally I’m fed up with Massa but it’s a fact that had Ferrari not introduced the the “electronic pit release” Massa would be a world champion and Lewis Hamilton would not be a world champion. It seems that even your team-mate might have a faster car than you, I well remember that back when Jenson first drove for Honda his Japanese team-mate was often faster until his engine failed, Jensons’ engine failed as well but later in the race leading me to conclude their engines were set to different power outputs and I still suspect that Vettels engines were mapped for more exhaust gas downforce than Webbers to ensure SV got pole, I don’t mean Webber was knobbled just that Vettel was 1st. among equals. Another example is suggested by the extra-ordinary lengths Alonso went to to remedy his percieved disadvantage at McLaren.

    • JCost (@jcost) said on 21st March 2012, 6:33

      C’mon! Lewis would say similar things about McLaren pitting him too late in China back in 2007. He would also say that Massa handed Kimi the title in Brazil or Spa’s stewards decision awarding Massa the win was a joke. The fact is Massa is running way behind his teammate and that’s the easiest way to judge a driver’s performance. The same way people are rating Lewis awfully because he’s being beaten by his teammate Massa is being rated by the same rules.

      Sure we should bear in mind that Alonso is very good, but neither Barrichelo nor Irvine have ever been that far away from Schumacher.

  7. Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 21st March 2012, 2:37

    I see that there hasn’t really been any of the traditional backlash over the cost of the Australian Grand Prix this year, which strikes me as odd, because it’s usually a quick story for newspapers to put out on the Monday after the race.

    With that in mind, I thought I’d share this: the federal government has been setting aside money for the Pacific Highway upgrade project. This includes a 14km stretch that is being built at the moment, complete with a 3.2km bridge. This section alone is being funded to the tune of $618 million. Even paying the premium amount of $50 million, this would be enough to guarantee a Grand Prix for over a decade.

    So I’d say that Bernie’s asking price is actually fairly cheap by comparison.

    • damonsmedley (@damonsmedley) said on 21st March 2012, 2:56

      The lack of criticism may have something to do with the attendance figures this year. Apparently it was the biggest crowd since 2005!

      • Dave (@davea86) said on 21st March 2012, 4:36

        This was the first time I missed going to the race in 5 years and that was the first thing I noticed when watching on tv. The crowd looked great. Made me wish I was there even more. Definitely next year.

        I usually try to do the weekend fairly cheaply but even so with race tickets, accommodation, flights, public transport, food, drink etc it adds up pretty quickly. Most out of town visitors would spend more than I do. It must pump a fair bit of money into the Victorian economy so they’d be getting a decent return on part of their $50 million investement.

    • HoHum (@hohum) said on 21st March 2012, 5:14

      Highways are expensive but this money is going to areas where people are dying in traffic accidents, anything less than a 4 lane divided highway is unacceptable. I did enjoy the race glad to see a good attendance but their seems to be some “spin” on exactly how much it costs.

      • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 21st March 2012, 5:18

        I am simply pointing out that even if a race costs $50 million, and even if all of that money is paid by the government, it is a fraction of the actual money they have at their disposal.

        • HoHum (@hohum) said on 21st March 2012, 6:04

          Yes but you know, 50 mil here a hundred mil there and before you know it you’r talking real money.

          • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 21st March 2012, 6:46

            Except that races only cost, at most, $50 million per year. Governments have plenty of money to set aside for the races. It’s only really a problem when they decide to build a brand-new circuit from the ground up, because it starts costing over $400 million for the circuit alone.

          • DVC said on 21st March 2012, 7:23

            Oh excellent point the race only costs $50 million. Which is not much compared to a road improvement project for the Pacific Highway (a road that has at times been the most notorious blackspot in Australia).

            You might also like to consider that the Pacific Highway project is a Federal Government Project, and I’m pretty sure that the GP is State Government funded. So, your point about it being small change compared to the money they have available is wrong, because the Vic government doesn’t have that money.

          • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 21st March 2012, 8:07

            your point about it being small change compared to the money they have available is wrong, because the Vic government doesn’t have that money

            But nor is the state completely broke. The fact that they can keep paying for the race, year in and year out, proves as much.

          • Adrian J (@adrian-j) said on 21st March 2012, 9:16

            Someone’s been watching the West Wing…I was about to post the same quote!!

        • Like DVC, I also thought that the GP was funded by the Government of the state of Victoria, not the federal government. Anyway, you have to wonder whether the total costs (not just the amount paid to Bernie) v. income actually balance out. There’s also the issue of what the people of middle park and other adjacent areas think of the F1… but personally, I think that the benefits are all about Melbourne’s ‘branding’ as an international city and destination, which is a pretty intangible and unquantifiable factor but one recognised by most.

          • Robbie (@robbie) said on 21st March 2012, 13:15

            I’m sure the Australian Government is no different than the Canadian Government and no doubt many other systems in the free world. Let’s be clear on one thing first and foremost…’their’ money is our money…it is all tax dollars that have come out of the hands of the people, no matter the level of government we are talking about. So ultimately it is the people that are paying for the highway, or the F1 race. And one thing I am convinced of more than ever is that all governments are experts at squandering our tax dollars, which is why it drives me crazy these days when I hear of politicians talking about needing to raise taxes to fund this thing or that. They have plenty of money. Governments don’t have a revenue problem, they have a spending problem, and if they could/would run themselves like a business or a household has to, rather than like they have a bottomless pit of our money at their disposal and if they need more they just force us to pay more, then they could easily afford both the highways and the F1 races that draw people from all over the world to inject money into the community, the province, and the country.

            Toronto currently has a mayor that ran on and got voted in on the concept that he would ‘stop the graveytrain’ ie. the abuse of the public’s hard earned tax dollars. That sentiment could go so so far at all levels of Canadian government, and no doubt in many other countries too. Especially in a soft global economy where jobs are scarcer, and pay raises too. So the concept of higher taxes on top of taxes that are already getting unbearable, is revolting to me and I love the ‘stop the gravytrain’ concept even though I live just outside of the Toronto area code. It applies everywhere.

          • Paulocreed (@paulocreed) said on 21st March 2012, 19:58

            @robbie The problem with the ‘stop the gravytrain’ concept is that he’s too radical and is actually spending more than he’s saving us. Take it from someone who works for him. But now this conversation is outside of the main subject.

          • Robbie (@robbie) said on 22nd March 2012, 13:52

            Fair enough Paulocreed…perhaps the conversation doesn’t belong here but I’m certainly intrigued by the concept that he is spending more than he is saving us. Hadn’t heard that and I don’t know where you mean, but if you work for him I’m sure you know way more than I do. eg of a question I would have…Is the spending just temporary while he rights the ship and has to deal with contracts that were in place before he got in?

  8. Colossal Squid (@colossal-squid) said on 21st March 2012, 3:00

    I have to laugh at the Ferrari press statement they made about giving Felipe a new chassis for Malaysia. It was something along the lines of “to determine the unusual performance of the car” during the weekend. The article then goes on to emphasise how Ferrari are doing everything to support Felipe. It’s hard to see that when they question Felipe’s (admittedly very poor) performance itself in the same article.

    Another thing when thinking about Felipe is the amount of stuff that he’s gone through in the past 3ish years. In 2008 he missed out on the WDC by one point. The next year he had a terrible car and was horribly injured, lucky to survive not to mention make it back to F1. The year after that Alonso is brought into the team.It was not said at the time but we all knew Alonso was brought in to lead the team, Felipe became a sidekick, and although Felipe kept with him and performed strongly over the first half of the season he was told to move over and let his team mate win on the one year anniversary of his accident. Then there was the resulting media fallout in his home country, which was harsh.

    Each one of the incidents described above taken individually would have been mentally devastating for anyone. Together, it’s not much of a surprise he hasn’t regained his form since Germany 2010. Maybe it was the straw that broke the Camel’s back. Maybe Felipe mentally is all out of fight, he’s been fighting against a lot of different things for so long.

  9. Joey-Poey (@joey-poey) said on 21st March 2012, 4:12

    I’m with Coulthard. When Jenson snagged the lead at turn one and then even managed to pull away, I’ll admit that as big of a fan I am of him, I did not expect it either! Hell, like Jenson, I was holding my breath the whole time, feeling he could be caught and it’ll all unravel. Yet, he kept the pace up, took advantage of all the right breaks that came his way and really just drove flawlessly. I’ve been arguing for him for the past year or so as someone who races with similarly steady tactics. It makes me feel a bit of a connection with him as a driver: the underdog. The one that doesn’t blow you away with raw speed, but somehow finds himself making do quite well with what’s available.

    I know it’s only race 1, but I’m starting to believe he’s got a realistic shot at the championship. He came in second pretty solidly last year. In fact before Vettel sealed it up, he was his last remaining threat. So maybe Jenson’s consistency will see him all the way to the top this time!

    • LexBlair (@lexblair) said on 21st March 2012, 12:57

      cheers to that :D

    • Robbie (@robbie) said on 21st March 2012, 12:59

      I second that @joey-poey…only I didn’t feel he could be caught and it would all unravel…not that I expected a runaway either, given that the field is closer this year. I think the only thing that surprised me is that LH didn’t capitalize on his pole position, but as to what JB did, I think JB is simply not the same driver as he was a few years ago, and I think last year boosted his confidence as a race winner and a WDC even further, and I think he is every bit ready, willing, and able to compete against everyone, including LH. If he had gotten caught I don’t think anything would have unravelled…I think it would have been a great battle with whoever might have caught him, and I think he still would have ended up with a great finish, some strong points, and fully in the fight for the rest of the season.

  10. Hallard said on 21st March 2012, 6:29

    Im not buying that Mark Hughes article on Skysports at all, or at least Im not buying his evaluation of the pullrod front suspension:

    To minimise its tendency to force the tyre to pull sharply sideways when encountering a bump during cornering load, it needs to be set up with negative camber (wheels pointing outwards at the bottom) so that the cornering pulls the wheel upright. That cures the pull-rod geometry’s sensitivity to bumps but introduces a different problem – instability under braking because when travelling in a straight line the tyre does not have its full tread surface in contact with the track.

    The tires orientation as the suspension moves through its stroke (e.g., when encountering a bump) is entirely dictated by the geometry of the upper and lower wishbones, not the pull-rod (or push-rod). There is of course a certain amount of flex as the cornering forces are distributed through the carbon fiber suspension components, since nothing is infinitely rigid. Nevertheless the pullrod is mounted to the top of the wiheel upright, which means that any contribution of the pull rod to this flexing would be an increase in negative camber (looks like this -> /_/ \_\ ) , and I dont see how increasing the car’s static negative camber would counteract this.
    Furthermore, every single team sets up their car with negative camber on both the front and rear tires, in order to maximize the overall grip of the tire’s surface when cornering. F1 cars tend to run fairly extreme camber angles too, of around -4 degrees in front if I’m not mistaken. This kind of set-up does in fact hinder straight line grip, especially under heavy braking, but I fail to see how this could be unique to Ferrari. I think that if the shortcomings of a pull-rod front suspension could be so succintly outlined by an F1 pundit, then Ferrari’s engineers probably would have gone with a push-rod set up in the first place.

    • mvi said on 21st March 2012, 7:51

      And doesn’t Pirelli give guidelines on minimum/maximum camber to use for maintaining the optimum wear on its tires? Didn’t Red Bull exceed the recommended maximum amount in one race and that was the reason for some extraordinary wear on the inside?

      • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 21st March 2012, 8:16

        Yeah, they did it at Spa last year. There was some concern that the tyres would be damaged after qualifying, and the FIA refused to let them replace their tyres before the start of the race. Tyres can be replaced if they are damaged (like in the event of an accident or a puncture), but the FIA ruled that Red Bull had set their cars up, knowing the risks the camber settings would bring, so they were not permitted to change their tyres. The FIA then adjusted the rules for Monza, making Pirelli’s maximum recommendations for tyre camber the maximum allowable.

  11. bearforce1 said on 21st March 2012, 7:43

    It’s like two steps backwards one step back at Ferrari the last few years.

  12. suka (@suka) said on 21st March 2012, 8:58

    In the round-up: McLaren say they will “rely on the FIA” to rule on Mercedes’ controversial wing design

    I guess I wouldn’t either if I had Mercedes supplying me with engines.

    • matt said on 21st March 2012, 9:19

      And I imagine that they wouldn’t bother protesting it either as they were the team that originally refined the concept to such success 2 years ago and probably have a beautifully resolved and effective solution waiting for the big green go button to be pressed as soon as the FIA unequivocally state that it’s legal. My feeling is that Macca are well ahead of the curve on this and the exhaust regs and will be feeding more developed versions of both into their program this year.
      I was very concerned at the departure of Fry and the hiring of Michaels, but perhaps the combination of a dedicated operations director and the lack of ‘radical’ ideas this season will pay dividends.

      • suka (@suka) said on 21st March 2012, 12:04

        Along that line, I hope FIA does not bring more restrictions on exhausts.
        I had my doubts about Fry myself and did not expect him to do miracles at Ferrari.

    • Robbie (@robbie) said on 21st March 2012, 13:27

      @suka…great point about Mac being Merc supplied and therefore being pretty diplomatic about wing designs.

      Anyway, I thought that the design of Mercs as well as the exhaust of Red Bull’s had been cleared as legal…the fact that some teams are asking for a clarification only means to me that the other teams will be given a description of why the Merc wing(s) are legal, not that they will suddenly be made illegal.

      • suka (@suka) said on 21st March 2012, 14:53

        I am not much technically inclined but I understand that the (hot/cold) blown diffusers and engine mapping led to various implementions which led to eventual ban so in that sense, I was worried Merc’s and thus all other similar could be restricted during the season. I hope I am wrong.

  13. Shimks (@shimks) said on 21st March 2012, 10:18

    Very interesting statement from the Tyre Talk – Q&A with Pirelli’s Paul Hembery article:

    Q: You are heading into your second season, so the rookie status is gone. What is it that you want to do better this year?
    PH: The medium and the hard compound last year were too hard, and that resulted in disadvantaging about 10 teams when we used the hard tyres, as they just could not get them to work. This is only okay if you are at the front. So we wanted to change that and wanted to make the tyres warm up quicker and make them not so difficult to use.

  14. robinrhysjones (@robinrhysjones) said on 21st March 2012, 11:07

    Happy Birthday Ayrton Senna da Silva!

  15. caci99 (@caci99) said on 21st March 2012, 11:39

    What’s the story with Williams and Brabham in 1982? Did they fill the car with water which later evaporated and so the car was within permitted weight before the race, but under weight after the race?

    • cjpdk (@cjpdk) said on 21st March 2012, 21:00

      Before the race, giant canisters filled with water were attached to the car. Filled with water, the cars passed the minumum weight requirement. The ruse was “water-cooled brakes” *coughliescough*

      Just before the race, the tanks were emptied. After the race, the tanks were filled; where they passed the weight test again.

      Unsuprisingly, they were disqualified.

      • Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 21st March 2012, 22:20

        @caci99 @cjpdk But not all the drivers whose cars had ‘water-cooled’ brakes were disqualified: John Watson, for example, inherited and kept second place.

        Which Keke Rosberg was not happy about come the end of the season when Watson was his principal rival for the championship.

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