Webber says tyres produce more exciting racing

F1 Fanatic round-up

Mark Webber, Red Bull, Mugello, 2012In the round-up: Mark Webber joins the debate over whether F1′s tyre situation is helping or harming the sport.

Links

Top F1 links from the past 24 hours:

Webber defends the Pirellis (Sky)

“We would all love to have quicker lap times, extremely consistent tyres, finishing with the race pace like we had in qualifying. That’s obviously what the drivers would love, but that wasn’t the most exciting thing for the racing. Trying to find somewhere in the middle is never easy and at the moment we have a pretty good show for the crowd. Whether it’s by design or accident… it’s turned out that way.”

Force India via Twitter

“Due to the lack of running for Paul [di Resta] today we have chosen to split the final day of Mugello testing between Paul and Nico [Hulkenberg]. Paul AM & Nico PM.”

Craig Scarborough via Twitter

“Exhausts [on day two at] Mugello: Top exit: Mercedes, Lotus, HRT, Marussia. McLaren-style exhaust: McLaren, Williams, Force India, Sauber and Toro Rosso. Sauber ramp: Red Bull. Red Bull tunnel: Caterham. Ferrari have Ferrari exhausts, which might change to the Sauber (Red Bull) exhaust or perhaps McLaren (McLaren) exhausts…”

The last time Formula 1 ignored the signs (Autosport, subscription required)

“It is a matter of record that Ecclestone owned Kyalami in the 1980s, having bought it for a pittance (plus liabilities of one million rand, then $500,000) on the day of the 1979 Grand Prix. It was sold on public auction at the height of the FOCA/FISA war a year later; rumour had it Ecclestone appointed a frontman to appease FISA, which accused him of conflict of interest as FOCA boss, Brabham team owner and circuit proprietor.”

Testing… 1, 2, 3! (Unibet)

My weekly column for Unibet.

Comment of the day

Atticus saw Jenson Button’s demo run in Hungary on Tuesday:

I live in Budapest and I was there. These parades brings the action so so close. Button literally did his spins 10 metres away from me. Indeed, there were a lot of people out there. Jenson did his runs, signed autographs and one girl incidentally noted how small he is ?ǣ despite being of the tallest on the grid. I managed to take some magnificently polished close-ups of the MP4-26 as well, they are among my best latest photos. (I am an amateur photographer.)

And boy, these V8 sounds good nevertheless ?ǣ I only heard them live once so far in 2009 at a similar event of Red Bull in Budapest. The V10s of 2005 at the Hungaroring are an even more distant memory. I hope to get to Spa or Monza this year or the next ?ǣ if Spa remains.

All in all, Button?s demo run was a great experience.
Atticus

From the forum

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to J.Danzig!

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On this day in F1

Nigel Mansell made it four wins from four starts at the beginning of the 1992 season with victory in the Spanish Grand Prix 20 years ago today.

Mansell dominated the wet race but Michael Schumacher impressed for Benetton, finishing second after Riccardo Patrese crashed. Jean Alesi completed the podium for Ferrari.

Here’s the start of the race. You can see how the track has changed since its original incarnation, including the loss of the fast Nissan chicane, the changes at Campsa, and the more recent addition of a chicane before the final corner.

Image ?? Red Bull/Getty images

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90 comments on Webber says tyres produce more exciting racing

  1. ScuderiaVincero (@scuderiavincero) said on 3rd May 2012, 0:22

    Hahah, I was about to type in “Brace yourself Seb, photoshops are coming” but those look pretty good!

  2. Alfie (@alfie) said on 3rd May 2012, 0:43

    I’d prefer quicker lap times.

    • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 3rd May 2012, 1:01

      And no passing?

      • timi (@timi) said on 3rd May 2012, 1:31

        @alfe @prisoner-monkeys I’d prefer 06 or 07 aero regs adapted to the longer cars due to refuelling, and 06 or 07 bridgestones.

        I’ve said it many times, and I’ll say it again. The problem is much deeper than the tyres, it’s the aero regulations. Change those, add a few laps to the tyres, goodbye DRS, goodbye dropping back in the pack 5 laps from the end of the race…

        • Mike (@mike) said on 3rd May 2012, 2:45

          How could anyone want to go back from where we are now?
          The racing is great!

          Doing as you suggest will undo all the work that has been done to improve the on track competition.

      • Dizzy said on 3rd May 2012, 2:35

        To say we had no passing Pre-Pirelli is incorrect.

        There was more overtaking in 2010 than any season since 1989 & I don’t recall anyone saying races were boring & there was no overtaking back in 1989.

        I want to see proper racing & these crappy tyres don’t give us this.

        • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 3rd May 2012, 4:23

          Your desire to see “proper racing” will likely result in a situation where nobody can pass anyone. Remember the 1999 Spanish Grand Prix? There was just one recorded overtake for the entire race. But hey, proper racing!

          • Dizzy said on 3rd May 2012, 9:47

            You highlight 1 race which featured little overtaking, However I could highlight many more races in 1999 that featured a lot of overtaking & a lot of very good racing.

            I never got the argument that Pre-2011 there was no overtaking. Most races saw a good level of overtakes, You had the odd race where there was very little but the majority featured good levels.
            For instance people say 2010 feature no overtaking yet it feature more on-track overtakes than any season since 1989 (547 overtakes in total) & on average there was 28.79 overtakes per-Gp.

            And I guarantee that 95%+ of those overtakes were far more exciting to watch than 95% of the passes we have seen in the Pirelli/DRS-Era.

        • Kimi4WC said on 3rd May 2012, 6:20

          Only thing that made that time exiting is rivalry between Hakkinen and Schumacher.

          Most exiting thing was to watch qualifying, it was amazing how those guys would come out and beat each other by hundreds of a second on every try.

      • Cluffy_Wedge said on 3rd May 2012, 10:21

        Exactly! People seem to forget the FIA has spend nearly a decade gerrymandering with the regulations in a bid to see more action. You can argue whether F1 should be NASCAR/Rollerball style entertainment or not, but I for one always hated races where you could just go and make lunch after the opening lap seeing as nothing would happen. Some tracks have always been exciting, but many more NEED the “artifice” of rapidly degrading tyres to be even remotely eventful.

        • Dizzy said on 4th May 2012, 9:53

          but I for one always hated races where you could just go and make lunch after the opening lap

          then maybe you shoudl have stopped watching & left f1 to the real racing fans who actually understand what a good race actually is.

          fans who love the tyres & gimmicks like drs because they need constant artificial action obviously don’t understand what real racing actually is.

          when we had races in the 60s/70s/80s whith little overtaking but lots of good racing you never heard anyone complaining about a lack of overtaking because all the real fans understood what racing was about.
          now with have all these casual fans who have low attention spans & dont understand racing & need constant action & f1 has become artificial because of them & alienated all the real fans who have stuck by f1 over the years.

          i want racing & not constant artificial, gimmickey action which isn’t even actually exciting to watch.

      • Alfie (@alfie) said on 5th May 2012, 8:49

        @prisoner-monkeys If that was a side effect, yes.

        • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 5th May 2012, 10:39

          Then I think you have your priorities wrong. If the sport change the tyres to produce quicker lap times at the expense of passing, I’m sure everyone will band together and say “You were tight, @alfie – this is the best decisions the sport could have made!”

          And so that there can be no doubt, everyone says it in a highly-sarcastic tone.

    • HoHum (@hohum) said on 3rd May 2012, 1:37

      I’d prefer slower lap times if it allowed wheel to wheel racing.

    • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 3rd May 2012, 1:33

      Wow, they’re ahead of schedule. I wasn’t expecting sealing to take place for another six weeks.

      • Scalextric (@scalextric) said on 3rd May 2012, 3:46

        It’s just a test section on turn 19. First of 4 layers.

        The top layer on normal asphalt paving in the US would be called the seal, a racing surface may not provide a complete seal.

        • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 3rd May 2012, 3:57

          I’m aware of that. However, they’re still well ahead of schedule. I believe they had originally planned to start sealing the surface in July and finish by the end of August.

    • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 3rd May 2012, 5:06

      I just found an aerial photo of the circuit.

      I think the layout might have changed a little. Compare it to this plan and it appears that Turn 2 is now much smoother than it once was, and Turns 3 and 4 seems to have been removed entirely so that it is flat out to the Silverstone replica. The Formula 1 website still shows Turns 3 and 4 intact, but Turn 2 appears to be much smoother.

      • necrodethmortem (@necrodethmortem) said on 3rd May 2012, 8:41

        @prisoner-monkeys If they left out 3 and 4, I wish they also would’ve cut out that awful 13, 14 and 15 bit. Serves no good purpose imo. They also could’ve eased 19 as well.

        Something like this: http://i48.tinypic.com/29aw56w.jpg

        • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 3rd May 2012, 9:22

          @necrodethmortem – It appears that Turns 3 and 4 might still be in there. These two corners will have run-off, and given the angle and distance of the aerial shot, it is difficult to determine where the circuit ends and the run-off begins. Both corners still appear in the circuit map on Formula1.com, which also reveals that Turn 9 has been tightened.

          As for Turns 13, 14 and 15, there are there for two reasons: first of all, it is a spectator area, allowing spectators to see the cars come down the straight and weave through the section. It’s actually two perfect replicas of Hockenheim’s stadium section, which is reasonably quick to begin with, and it wouldn’t surprise me if the tarmac through those corners was deliberately mixed to offer more grip so the drivers can take it quickly.

          Secondly, it appears to have been deliberately designed to be at odds with the rest of the circuit. This seems to be Tilke’s latest little trick, trying to force the teams to make a choice in their setup. This is most-prevalent in Korea, where the first sector relies on straight-line speed and braking, the second sector tests a driver’s raw ability, and this third sector challenges the drivers to set the car up perfectly. Tilke has recognised that different cars are getting their speed in different places, and has laid down the gauntlet: the teams can have a setup that is okay in all three sectors, but not necessairly super-quick – or they can set the car up for two sectors, sacrifice speed in the third and try to make up the difference. We saw it in qualifying last year where the cars were setting very similar lap times, but wildly different sector times. It’s secretly brilliant, although somewhat diminished by DRS. It’s also evident in India; half the circuit is about straight-line speed and braking, while the other is very driver-oriented.

          I think that’s what they’re trying to repeat here: forcing the drivers to make a setup choice that will make them blindlingly quick around the circuit, but vulnerable through two corners, or generally quick everywhere, but not necessarily as fast as they could be.

          • necrodethmortem (@necrodethmortem) said on 3rd May 2012, 12:25

            @prisoner-monkeys I know that section is a stadium section replica, but unlike Hockenheim, this circuit has other high downforce sections, so it won’t have the same effect. I could be wrong, but I think the 13-15 section will only make the teams run even higher downforce, which will make for a more boring race.

            And Tilke’s little trick to put a bit of everything in one track is the number one reason I hate his designs. If it was just one or two tracks on the calendar it could be great, but more than half of the calendar has been through his hands and in the future probably close to 75% or more. In this case, I think it would be much more interesting to make a couple of low downforce tracks, a few drivers tracks and a few high downforce tracks (but all with at least one good overtaking spot) to at least offer some real variation, instead of 20 something tracks with similar layouts. Also, it may be interesting for qualifying, but as evident in Korea and India, in a race you see a higher downforce car either running away from a low downforce one if it’s in front, or being stuck behind it if it’s behind, with very boring races as a result.

            One last thing: why is this track a tribute to European circuits, while there are at least as many great ones in North America where F1 never comes? Think about Road Atlanta’s esses and the old dip, Virginia’s rollercoaster, Watkins Glen’s outer loop, Mosport’s turn 2, Laguna Seca’s corkscrew, etc etc. I feel it’s a bit of a missed opportunity.

          • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 3rd May 2012, 13:09

            <blockquote.I could be wrong, but I think the 13-15 section will only make the teams run even higher downforce, which will make for a more boring race.
            High downforce does not automatically equal a boring race.

            And Tilke’s little trick to put a bit of everything in one track is the number one reason I hate his designs.

            Tilke himself didn’t actually design this circuit. The concept was created by Tavo Hellmund and Kevin Schwantz, and one of Tilke’s architects was charged with making their ideas into reality.

            it may be interesting for qualifying

            I just used qualifying in Korea as an example.

            why is this track a tribute to European circuits, while there are at least as many great ones in North America where F1 never comes? Think about Road Atlanta’s esses and the old dip, Virginia’s rollercoaster, Watkins Glen’s outer loop, Mosport’s turn 2, Laguna Seca’s corkscrew, etc etc.

            You would have to ask Tavo Hellmund.

  3. HoHum (@hohum) said on 3rd May 2012, 1:42

    Scarbs tweets are driving me crazy, just not enough info. I look forward to his in depth analysis.

  4. Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 3rd May 2012, 1:46

    @keithcollantine – Happy one million comments!

    I think. If the URL for a new comment coincides with the number of comments made on the blog, then my last comment was number 1,000,315, which means you’ve successfully managed to pass one million comments.

    Congratulations!

  5. HoHum (@hohum) said on 3rd May 2012, 2:19

    By supplying tyres to F1, Pirelli are a sponsor of F1 so the drivers and the teams all feel some degree of obligation to not criticise them or even the characteristics of the current tyres because of the ignorant commentators who link the brand with characteristics that they have been asked to engineer into the product. Puting our heads in the sand and pretending there is no problem does nobody any good, let’s have a frank and open discussion of the type of tyre that will be best for our sport without over-emphasising the politically correct responses of interested parties or the totally unsupported statement that the majority of fans want the current tyres.

    • HoHum (@hohum) said on 3rd May 2012, 3:07

      Headlines suggesting Mark Webber said the current tyres create “riveting” or even “exciting” racing are a gross exageration of Webbers response to a question about the tyres, his opinion was that at the moment they are putting on ” a pretty good show”, the headline for this statement could just as easily have read;
      “Webber damns tyres with faint praise”

      • Dizzy said on 3rd May 2012, 3:20

        “a pretty good show”
        And thats all F1 is now with Pirelli’s & DRS, an artificial show that comes at the expence of racing.

        Poeple go on about all the great racing that happens & all the great overtaking that happens thanks to DRS & pirelli, However I havn’t actually seen any proper racing actually going on?

        I see cars driving past one another on straghts due to DRS, Thats neither good racing or exciting to watch?
        I see cars driving around to save tyres & cars on fresher tyres easily driving by cars on more worn tyres. Not really good racing & in many cases certainly isn’t exciting to watch.

        I’ve been following F1 for about 43 years & I don’t think I have ever seen racing of such poor quality than it is in F1 now.
        Everyone just looks at quantity of passes now & ignored the fact that 90% f them are of very poor quality

        • me262 said on 3rd May 2012, 3:43

          Formula 1 has moved with the times. In the 60′s there was real music, real people, real racing. In 2012 we have lady gaga & Justin Bieber, plastic people and fake racing to improve the show, to please the masses. More GP’s per season, more show attracts more viewers = more $

          • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 3rd May 2012, 4:25

            So, twelve races and no passing is the purest form of racing?

            Am I the only one who thinks that’s a little backwards?

          • me262 said on 3rd May 2012, 4:43

            confucious says: backwards is where one ends when pursuer presses steering wheel button

          • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 3rd May 2012, 4:53

            Not at all. When used properly, DRS gives an attacking driver just enough of a boost to get his front wing in line with a defending driver’s rear wheel. After that, it’s all down to the driver. But, as we’ve seen at times – from what I hear, it was misplaced in Bahrain – DRS isn’t always applied properly, so passing becomes a little too easy.

            The really sad state of affairs is that DRS is needed at all. Modern Formula 1 is over-reliant on aerodynamics, and when the cars cannot close to within a second of one another simply because the wake of the car in front makes it impossible for the car behind to get close. But since the teams won’t give up so much as an ounce of downforce, DRS is a necessary evil.

      • Alexis Ryan (@wench) said on 3rd May 2012, 6:31

        What he said really seems like a very backhanded compliment. He’s not saying its good racing, just that its entertaining to watch.

        • me262 said on 3rd May 2012, 7:30

          yep i think its another case of Aussie sarcasm (‘ Not bad for a Number 2 driver ‘)

        • Dizzy said on 3rd May 2012, 9:49

          When used properly, DRS gives an attacking driver just enough of a boost to get his front wing in line with a defending driver’s rear wheel.

          But 95% of the time this does not happen.
          95% of passes which involve DRS are ridiculously easy drive-by’s in which the passing car is well past before they even get to the braking zone.

          I’ve yet to see a single DRS pass that has been remotrely exciting or intresting to watch.
          DRS does nothing but produce easy, boring, unexciting, unintresting & dull drive-by highway passes.

  6. Anti-RBR (@matt2208) said on 3rd May 2012, 2:32

    i want too see drivers attacking, and the best driver winning thats what i want to see in F1. The real drivers can overtake without the 2dollar pirellis and DRS. Alonso/Kimi/hamilton/Kubica had no problem overtaking, it’s just the rest couldn’t. get some better drivers that can overtake and drive then we will have some racing on our hands. With the Pirellis all you gotta do is be in 1st on the first lap and you ‘ll have the win. BORING.

    • AJ (@ascar2000us) said on 3rd May 2012, 5:51

      @matt2208 A lot of those guys you mentioned could overtake because they were in superior cars.
      As you name suggests (Anti RBR), you are upset that RBR/Vettel have enjoyed success and you would use every opportunity to belittle their success.
      “1st on the first lap and you ‘ll have the win” was true of Bridgestone, except that Refuelling played a role.

      As of today aerodynamics play a huge role in overtaking. I am not a huge fan of DRS. But the tires are fine. as a driver if you are to adapt to whatever car your team sits you in, you bloody well make the best of the tires cos the tires are one thing that is constant across the field.

  7. USF1-Fan said on 3rd May 2012, 2:54

    the crappy pirelli joke tires have not improved the racing at all, they have just made it more artificial & i certainly do not find that more entertaining.

    was considering going to the race in texas later in the year but think i’ll buy tickets to some indycar races instead so that i can go watch some real racing with no artificial gimmicks like drs & watch cars race on some proper tires!

    there was some polling done by speed channel recently & 76% of the fans who voted said they disliked what the pirelli tyres had done to f1 & 84% also said they disliked drs.
    if f1 wants to succeed in america they need to drop drs & start using proper tires because clearly the north american f1 fans at least don’t like the direction f1 has gone. tv figures on speed are also way down as well as a result of these things.

    • USF1-Fan said on 3rd May 2012, 2:56

      another thing, nascar went down this artificial entertainment route & it worked for a while but recently fans have been turning away in significant numbers.
      seems people want to see some racing now & not a lot of artificial bs & thats exactly what the pirelli joke tires & drs are.

      • HoHum (@hohum) said on 3rd May 2012, 3:15

        Quite correct, but please don’t blame Pirelli, they are making what they have been asked to make, by linking them to the problem it makes it harder for the teams, drivers, FIA and Bernie to admit there is a problem. Criticise the TYRES not Pirelli.

    • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 3rd May 2012, 4:34

      I hear a lot of people squawking about how the racing is artificial and that it’s bad for the sport and that people will inevitably turn their backs on Formula 1 because of it, but do you know what I’m not hearing?

      Suggestion on what Formula 1 could do to make the racing more organic. For all your complaints and dire predictions, I haven’t heard a single person from within the self-proclaimed voices of reason step forward and actually say “You know, I think the sport is in bad shape – but it could be made better if they did this and that”. Right now, all you’re really doing is running around shouting “Tyres, bad! DRS, evil! Racing, doomed!” as if you’re the only ones who can see it and the rest of us are just being blindly led around like a group of lemmings.

      So, we’ve established that some people think the current state of the sport is far from healthy. You’re perfectly entitled to that opinion, and I’m certainly not criticising you for having it. But there is a subtle-yet-important difference between criticism and constructive criticism. Could we perhaps have a little less of the former and a lot more of the latter? Because right now, all you’re doing is reaffirming my belief that Formula 1 fans are only happy when they have something to complain about.

      • Kimi4WC said on 3rd May 2012, 5:46

        This is why we have Bernie, without him everything would have fall apart.

        There are plenty of smart people, but very few with a strong character. Most people with strong character not very open minded. Humanity at it’s best.

        I wonder if re-introducing side skirts on expense of wing downforce will help drivers with turbulent air issue while following close behind.

        • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 3rd May 2012, 6:05

          Rory Byrne and Patrick Head suggested bringing ground effects back for 2014, to coincide with the next generation of engines. However, the teams rejected the idea. They thought it was asking too much to have ground effects and the new engines.

      • me262 said on 3rd May 2012, 7:37

        severely reduce downforce. keep wings just for aesthetics
        if that dosent work then groove the tyres :)
        if that dosent work then just get everyone into F3 cars

      • necrodethmortem (@necrodethmortem) said on 3rd May 2012, 12:31

        Minimize wing area and for compensation wider cars with bigger tyres and more power :)

  8. F1_Dave said on 3rd May 2012, 3:14

    The fact that Pirelli have suddenly got so defensive about there product is I think a sign that critisism is mounting.

    Last year there was some critisism here & there regarding tyres but this year it seems there is way more & now it seems drivers are talking out as well. It started with Schumacher & then Brundle mentioned having spoke to other drivers who echoed Michael’s comments & it seems a lot of the fans share vis opinion based on polls/comments I have seen about the interwebs.

    I think its pretty clear Pirelli have gone way too extreme this year.

    • AJ (@ascar2000us) said on 3rd May 2012, 5:58

      Brundle?? errr anyway… Schumacher started this debate because despite having a reasonably good car he has not been able to produce results unlike NICO.
      then he makes comments at the start of the season advising Kimi not to expect much on his comeback as its tuff. Kimi goes on to score a podium and has had a super comeback. hmmm…

      • snowman (@snowman) said on 3rd May 2012, 8:55

        @AJ

        He says Brundle SPOKE to other drivers. It is hard to produce reasonable results when-
        1st race = retirement because of gearbox
        2nd race = spun by rookie at first corner
        3rd race = retirement because of wheel loose after pitstop
        4th race = drs faliure in qualifying, then gearbox change & starting from 22nd

        How well do you think Kimi would have looked if his comeback was made alongside as fast a driver as Rosberg rather than a rookie and in a very poor Mercedes 2010?

        • AJ (@ascar2000us) said on 3rd May 2012, 15:34

          @snowman well Schumi has had bad luck in 2012 agreed. and his performance has been better this year. but that is after 2 years. I don’t think Grosjean is any slower. Besides he has come off 2 GP2 seasons while Kimi not so much..
          You have to admit that Kimi has been on the pace straight away while Michael has been quite the silly racer in 2011 and not so impressive in 2010 either. at time over half a second slower than Nico.
          And I think i speak for many here. Kimi would have fared much better in michael’s place.

          • Kingshark (@kingshark) said on 6th May 2012, 20:11

            How well do you think Kimi would have looked if his comeback was made alongside as fast a driver as Rosberg rather than a rookie and in a very poor Mercedes 2010?

            3 podiums and a total of 214 points. That 2010 Mercedes certainly didn’t look very poor in Rosberg’s clutches.

  9. Matt (@agentmulder) said on 3rd May 2012, 4:23

    I made a point in my podcast, why not reintroduce refueling with the 2011 Pirelli tires? This would allow aggressive drivers to push longer on softer tires and lighter fuel loads, while giving conservative drivers the option to stop less. It could also boost the whole “eco-F1″ crowd by making more efficient use of the fuel, as quite a bit of the stuff now is wasted due to the massive weight at the race start.

    I haven’t chastised Pirelli too much for Bahrain, as it was their first time there (could have brought harder tires, but that runs the risk of Bridgestone Redux). However, this season does seem to be trending towards tire conservation a bit too much. It seems they went overboard in correcting for the latter half of 2011, when teams were taking the tires extremely far.

    • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 3rd May 2012, 4:44

      @agentmulder

      why not reintroduce refueling with the 2011 Pirelli tires?

      Because refuelling turns the race into a series of glorified time trials. All a driver has to do is meet certain lap time targets lap after lap, and will build a suitable enough buffer that he can simply leapfrog people in the pits. He won’t have to attempt a pass because he knows that if he meets his targets, he will come out on top.

      • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 3rd May 2012, 4:47

        Refuelling has also created some very artificial passing in the past. Kamui Kobayashi won “pass of the year” in 2009 for his move on Jenson Button at the (first) hairpin in Abu Dhabi. But Button had just pitted and came out fuel-heavy and on fresh tyres. Kobayashi was at the very end of the stint (he pitted within about five laps), and the Bridgestone tyres were both durable and fast. Kobayashi’s pass on Button was an inevitablity (and it was a very poor pass because he nearly took Button out; he should have waited for the straight); given the conditions, any of us could have pulled it off. But because Kobayashi was in his third race and Button had just been crowned champion in Brazil, everyone ignored the way Button had literally just come out of the pits and Kobayashi had not gone in yet.

        • OOliver said on 3rd May 2012, 8:08

          But Kobayashi got past or defended, while exhibiting great race craft in two successive races, while in a battle with Button, so it wasn’t all down to refueling.

        • LexBlair (@lexblair) said on 3rd May 2012, 13:00

          also lets not forget the all to famous incidents which could have resulted in major accidents…

    • Dizzy said on 3rd May 2012, 9:35

      Refueling would just move the racing back into the pit lane though like it did last time.
      One reason we saw a drop in on-track overtaking from 1994 onwards was because teams were using fuel strategy/pit stops to pass other cars in the pits. as soon as refueling was banned for 2010 the level of on-track overtaking jumped back upto pre-94 levels.
      2010 saw more on-track overtaking than any year since 1989 which is why i never got the ‘there is no overtaking” argument we often heard in 2010.

  10. DVC (@dvc) said on 3rd May 2012, 4:31

    I agree with some of what you say, but not every pass should be an instant classic. If you have to pull off the move of the year just to make a pass then there is something wrong.

    All the talk that the passes are of lesser quality now I think misses the point. There are just as many high quality passes as their used to be, but now they are between more closely matched opponents. There are more average passes, but it is these that are improving the racing because they are allowing similarly matched cars to actually end up in a situation where they are together on track, and this is when great passes occur.

    A great pass made by Schumacher on Kovalinen is nothing to write home about, if it’s Alonso and Hamilton going at it that’s far more memorable.

    I’m not a fan of DRS in its current form, but the tyre situation now is far better than it has been previously in a one make situation. Aside from seeing good passes between comparable cars and drivers, strategy is now more open too, because it is not being dictated solely by track position as it was in the past.

    • Kimi4WC said on 3rd May 2012, 5:51

      Yep, look at Rikkonen.

      How often with regards to Kimi did you hear Martin Brundle say: “not very often we see drivers overtake here”. And he already said this in 2012 :)

      Some drivers don’t need DRS as much, but some drivers focus too much on it.

  11. AJ (@ascar2000us) said on 3rd May 2012, 6:04

    My proposed Solution:
    1) If at all we have to use DRS, use it on circuits that have small straights eg; Australia.
    Ban it from Spa, Monza, Abu Dhabi. Better still Ban it completely.
    2) Use the current Pirelli Tires.
    3) Scrap the “Start Race on Qualifying Tire rule”. Provide extra sets in Qualifying.
    4) Scrap the use both Compound in race rule.

    This will ensure proper qualifying battles with no-one holding back. Tracks like Spa do not need DRS hence the artificial element eliminated. Top qualifiers not penalized for qualifying well. Teams will be free to race tires best suited to their cars which will see a mix of strategies.

    • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 3rd May 2012, 6:29

      Tracks like Spa do not need DRS

      I disagree. Spa does not produce legendary races by default. There have been plenty of occasions in the past where the races have been rather boring.

      • AJ (@ascar2000us) said on 3rd May 2012, 7:20

        a DRS pass does not make the race Legendary. Vettel pulled of a beauty on Rosberg around the outside of Blanchimont. Webber/Alonso Eau-Rouge. That is what fans wanna see.
        The tires are providing ample overtaking opportunities if used correctly. DRS is plain unfair on a track with such long straights.

        • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 3rd May 2012, 7:40

          DRS is plain unfair on a track with such long straights.

          It’s not the length of the straight that counts – it’s the length of the DRS zone. You can have a long straight with a short DRS zone. That’s what the FIA tried to do in China this year, shortening the distance from the activation point to the braking zone at the hairpin. Arguably, they took it too far, but it does highlight my point: Spa can have a shorter DRS zone if necessary.

  12. Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 3rd May 2012, 6:52

    Webber shoots down Ferrari rumours:

    “Sergio (Perez) was flavour of the month last week for the Ferrari drive. Now, it’s me. I’m focusing 100 percent on this season and doing the best job for myself and Red Bull Racing. I’m not putting any energy into anything else. There’s a whole season ahead of us before we need to think about the future. One day the talk is about Jenson (Button joining Ferrari), then it’s Sergio, now it’s me. I haven’t signed anything. My focus is on this team. We’ve had a good start to the season, we’re only four races down and the road is very, very, very long before we start talking about the future.”

    • me262 said on 3rd May 2012, 7:39

      in the same way that Kimi Raikkonen was shooting down rumours of his F1 return? ;)

      • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 3rd May 2012, 7:46

        Correlation does not equal causation. Just because Raikkonen said he wasn’t coming back and then did, that doesn’t mean that Webber is saying he won’t go to Ferrari but plans on doing so. Especially since a lot of people like the way Webber speaks his mind and makes no effort to water things down. For him to say “I’m not going to Ferrari”, only to turn around and go to Ferrari, would be out of character.

        • me262 said on 3rd May 2012, 8:09

          do you think Webber would admit he’s going to Ferrari this early in the season if he WAS going to Ferrari?

          • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 3rd May 2012, 8:21

            “He didn’t/wouldn’t say anything, therefore, it must be true” is one of the most flawed arguments you could possibly make.

            Especially since that argument could be applied to Jenson Button or Sergio Perez with equal merit given that they didn’t say anything about going to Ferrari, either.

            Do you see the logical fallacy behind your argument?

        • me262 said on 3rd May 2012, 8:36

          ….so lets just dismiss it as rumour. I have no argument…I would say Webber isnt going to Ferrari too…I just wouldnt put my house on it

    • HoHum (@hohum) said on 4th May 2012, 4:45

      “I haven’t signed anything” there we are a total rebuttal, absolutely nothing in it, face it you always sign before you talk.

  13. snowman (@snowman) said on 3rd May 2012, 8:59

    Webber admits he doesn’t like the tyres but takes the PR line of “good for the show” Do we the fans like the show of a close endurance contest were the kindest driver on his tyres wins or do we want actually a race were the best driver wins if he has a decent car under him.

  14. JamieFranklinF1 (@jamiefranklinf1) said on 3rd May 2012, 9:29

    Plain and simple, there is no problem with the current tyres. The vast majority of F1 in previous years (before Bridgestone’s super-durable tyres) were using tyres that could not be pushed to their limits all of the time, so why should it be any different now? People want to see ‘pure’ racing, and yet surely tyre preservation is part of a racing driver’s skill set. Yes, perhaps there needs to be more of a variety in the tyres, to allow driver’s to push harder if that’s their style, or to save the tyre more, if they want to run their race like that, rather than an inevitable drop-off, but if it does stay as it is, then I’m quite pleased, as it has produced some fantastic racing.
    You only need to look at the figures of the ‘Rate the Race’ results to see that the races of this and last year were superior in entertainment than they were in previous years.

    I can also understand why people don’t like DRS, but I’d rather see the DRS used in F1, than have the driver stuck behind because of the disadvantage of the wake from the car in front. I agree that there should be some tweaks, because at some tracks, it is a little too over-powered, but that should reduce as more experience is gained.
    My only real qualm with the DRS is that we no longer see cars from the back of the field being able to mix it in the top 10, because as soon as they’re caught, they usually get passed quite easily, but then again, with the tight field we have this year, it’s not like we aren’t seeing some great mixed-up results!

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