McLaren claim pit stop record

F1 Fanatic round-up

Jenson Button, McLaren, Valencia, 2012In the round-up: McLaren say they set a new record for the fastest pit stop stationary time in the European Grand Prix


Top F1 links from the past 24 hours:

McLaren: pit stop ‘not the norm’ (The Telegraph)

“Mercedes were the previous record holders of the fastest stationary pit stop, achieving a time similar to McLaren?s 2.6s in Korea last year. But the Woking team believe they were just quicker.”

Three teams still on for Silverstone test (Autosport)

“Discussions have taken place over the past two Grands Prix to try and resolve the matter, and it now appears that at least three teams – believed to include Marussia, HRT and Williams ?ǣ are now planning to run on the Thursday and Friday after the British GP.”

McLaren predicts fierce development (ESPN)

Sam Michael: “I think the development rate this year is going to be really fierce because in the past there were things that maybe for half a tenth you would have lumped into something else, but it’s not like that now. 50 milliseconds is one place this year, sometimes two places, so you’re going to be bringing gains that are tinier and tinier. It would be interesting to see what the gap between the top 10-15 is like from the start of the year, because it feels like it’s getting tighter and tighter.”

European GP Review (Williams)

Chief operations engineer Mark Gallagher: “Obviously the team were disappointed to see one of our cars sustain damage so close to the end of the race when we were showing good pace, but we respect the decision taken by the stewards. Both Pastor [Maldonado] and the team have moved on and the focus is now on achieving a good result at Silverstone.”

Martin Whitmarsh: “These days everything is a surprise…” (Adam Cooper)

“At the end [Lewis Hamilton] was clearly and obviously struggling on the tyres. Twenty nine laps on either tyre was going to be a challenge, and it proved very difficult to do. If you stopped early you were taking a big risk, so it was difficult to come through that one.”

GP Of America Making ‘Significant Progress,’ Spokesman Says (Speed)

Alex Howe: “Nothing has changed in the last two weeks, since we hosted Sebastian Vettel and David Coulthard as the first drivers from F1 to try out the new circuit. We continue to make significant progress toward the first race in June 2013, in all aspects.”

Circuit officials offer to send county staffers to London race (Statesman)

“Local Formula One organisers have offered to pay airfare and other expenses for two Travis County employees to observe the arrangements for a race in England next week, a move the county judge endorses.”

Vijay Mallya Q&A: Force India on target for podium (F1)

“We want to be on the podium. I think we?re close to it now.”

Will Mercedes offer Schumacher a new contract? (BBC)

“They are known to be interested in Hamilton, the only one of the big three who is potentially available to take his place. But Hamilton may well not be available – he seems more likely to either stick with McLaren or to try to persuade Red Bull they should take him on given the reasonable possibility they could lose Vettel to Ferrari at the end of next year.”

Alonso sails serenely (Sky)

Martin Brundle: “To suggest the safety car was a tactical deployment to spice up the racing is nonsense. We saw as they pushed Vettel’s and other cars away at various times just how difficult it is for the marshals to clear the track at that circuit between the walls and with limited internal service access.”

Sexism in F1 or just playing to the target audience? (The really bad F word)

“Perhaps if there was a female driver or two, she would have hunky men at her car with bulging muscles wearing a stretchy tight tank top? I still cannot see this happening any time soon though.”

Comment of the day

Does unreliability make F1 races more exciting? SirCoolbeans is hatching a plan:

It was fun to see reliability issues return, it?s not a nice way to exit a Grand Prix, but it really spiced up the show.

So, overtaking and reliability issues make for entertaining races, maybe we need another button on the steering wheel that the driver presses in a designated zone, it will ‘roll a dice’ and give them a 1 in 100 chance of having their car forced to break down, but only if they are leading by more than some arbitrary time.

It could be called the Reliability Determination System or RDS, it would sit well next to DRS.

From the forum

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to Dan N and gDog!

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

Happy birthday to Nico Rosberg who turns 27 today.

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151 comments on McLaren claim pit stop record

  1. PaulT (@pault) said on 27th June 2012, 4:00

    In his review of the European GP, Martin Brundle discusses Vergne’s move on Kovalainen, and says

    “…. an all too common racing tactic of being virtually past someone and then driving towards them to intimidate them and hoping to force them to lift off or even brake. I had some clown do this to me at night in Le Mans at 190mph 10 days ago and so I returned the compliment to give him a taste of his own medicine.”

    Brundle rightly condemns Vergne, but his own retaliation at Le Mans makes him just as big a clown as the other other guy. With that sort of attitude, Brundle does nothing to educate rookie drivers in good race craft and respect for others.

    • snowman (@snowman) said on 27th June 2012, 9:01

      I agree it sets an extremely bad example not only to have retaliated the move but then be boasting about it to thousands of young drivers who might read his review.

      Another thing was the comment trying to say Schumacher cheated his way unto the podium when every other half decent journalist reported Webber was actually way faster in the yellow flag sector and Schumacher had lifted significantly.

      • Karthikeyan (@ridiculous) said on 27th June 2012, 9:46

        The fact remains that Schumacher used DRS in a yellow zone but the stewards think the lifted off enough. As for Webber, as long as the sector delta time is higher than the last lap it will be deemed that he had also lifted off. Problem is the selective application of rules to aid a driver but claiming neutral. How is this different from Massa or Vettel is Valencia only the stewards know?

      • Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 27th June 2012, 10:00


        Another thing was the comment trying to say Schumacher cheated his way unto the podium

        Nowhere in Brundle’s article does he accuse Schumacher of “cheating”.

        • snowman (@snowman) said on 27th June 2012, 10:21


          “Many team personnel I spoke to were unhappy that Michael Schumacher got away with opening his DRS rear wing generating higher speeds in a yellow flag zone. As far as many are concerned that’s an open and shut case resulting in a penalty – as Red Bull found out earlier in the season.”

          To me that is clearly trying to make people believe Schumacher cheated his way unto the podium. Brundle says that without mentioning any of the details surrounding the incident like the fact Webber was 0.3sec faster than Schum in that sector which surely he must have known.

          • Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 27th June 2012, 10:56

            @snowman Brundle is reporting other teams’ reactions to Schumacher’s penalty. He is not required to forensically examine every available fact surrounding what happened in order to prevent people like you twisting his words to make it sound like he’s accusing Schumacher of “cheating”.

          • snowman (@snowman) said on 27th June 2012, 11:06


            If someone who knows nothing about what happened read that article they would believe Schumacher cheated only to be kept having the podium because of his age and time spent of it.

            Would you not believe he cheated by reading that article alone not knowing anything else? Wasn’t hard just to say why he wasn’t actually penalized instead of leaving a strong impression he should have been.

          • Victor. (@victor) said on 27th June 2012, 14:44

            Would you not believe he cheated by reading that article alone not knowing anything else?


          • Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 27th June 2012, 14:49


            If someone who knows nothing about what happened read that article they would believe Schumacher cheated only to be kept having the podium because of his age and time spent of it.

            If they read it properly they would conclude that some other teams felt Schumacher had broken a rule.

            And if they had an modicum of sense they’d know the stewards enforce the rules, not the teams. And they’d also realise that rival teams might have a very good reason for wanting to create the impression Schumacher had done something wrong.

          • BBT (@bbt) said on 27th June 2012, 18:22

            As soon as I heard about it I knew Schumacher would not get penalised. It was a 100% given after making it onto the podium, anyone that can’t see that has rose tinted specks.
            No one can prove it either way, so with the bad press a penalty would have got compared to the podium standing it…… was a no brainer.

    • Bullfrog (@bullfrog) said on 27th June 2012, 14:06

      I don’t doubt that drivers need to look after themselves out there, and I guess Brundle’s controlled retaliation is not as bad as Maldonado’s brainfarts.

      But there’s a more classy way to do it, as Mika Hakkinen once showed Schumacher at Spa:

  2. damonsmedley (@damonsmedley) said on 27th June 2012, 4:08

    I agree with basically everything in that article about grid girls. But it’s not like anyone’s forcing them to be there. If all women ignored the advertisements for volunteers, there’d be no grid girls. But I assume these are models that want some exposure (and money) so they can make it to the top of their respective fields. I don’t feel I have any right to think any less of someone based on their career choice. If it makes them happy (it must do, otherwise they’d probably not do it), how is it really a bad thing?

    I don’t pay the slightest bit of attention to the grid girls because I think they add nothing to F1, but they’re happy, some people like staring at them… everyone’s happy, right?

    • Gridboy (@gridboy) said on 27th June 2012, 6:18

      The entire idea about having grid girls holding signs is just distasteful. It just adds to the image of motor racing being exclusive to men – women are just supposed to shut up, wear tiny outfits and smile. The part where they applaud the podium finishers really leaves a bad taste in my mouth, why can’t they be replaced by young fans who actually look up to these guys, instead of girls who probably don’t know and don’t care who they’re applauding?

      The sooner F1 gets rid of this stale, sexist tradition the better. It’s hurting the sport’s image.

      • Puffy (@puffy) said on 27th June 2012, 8:57

        @gridboy I’ve not really got much to add to your comment except to say I agree with it. @damonsmedley The problem is not so much that they do or do not enjoy it, it’s about the image it presents, it’s basically telling women that F1 is not for them and that it’s something that only men should enjoy. That’s not really the image we should want for out sport.

      • Girts (@girts) said on 27th June 2012, 11:16

        On the one hand, ‘pit babes’ probably come from the time when it was generally believed that only ‘real men’ are interested in auto racing. Today we know that the F1 fan community is as colourful as the world, you’ll find old ladies, young women, gay men and everyone else among F1 fans so it’s clearly not like we all want to see ‘hot chicks’ on the grid. On the other hand, a lot of fans like the grid girls, the drivers and the sponsors don’t seem to object, too (by the way, David Coulthard met one of his girlfriends this way).

        I personally don’t think that the image of F1 will change a lot if we send the grid girls home. To draw an analogy, I don’t think we’ll succeed in fighting alcoholism if drivers stop spraying champagne on the podium. I think that ‘pit babes’ could occasionally be replaced by ‘pit hunks’ and, more importantly, that F1 should focus on trying to attract more female engineers and female racers, for example, by giving more spotlight to the likes of Monisha Kaltenborn and Maria de Villota.

      • Himmat Singh. said on 27th June 2012, 12:35

        Well the lining up part after the race to the podium is fairly new right? I agree it’s nonsense….sends the wrong message out. Some drivers may not even like it. Thank God it’s not like Tour de France where girls give the winners kisses on their left and right cheeks on the podium!

        • Girts (@girts) said on 27th June 2012, 13:24

          What’s not to like there? I guess that the girls leave some or probably even most drivers cold but I’d be surprised if somebody found them annoying.

  3. Joey-Poey (@joey-poey) said on 27th June 2012, 5:55

    Yes, I would like to see a female driver surrounded by hunky men. And no I would not stop watching if they replaced grid girls with hunky men. And yes this is coming from a straight male. And no I do not consider the grid girls sexist.

    But then maybe I’ve been around the internet and American culture for too long where MUCH more disturbing and rage-worthy misogyny goes on.

    • BasCB (@bascb) said on 27th June 2012, 7:29

      I guess part of bringing this up is the fact that there were some grid hunks on in Valenica in the past. Now that is changed.

      • Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 27th June 2012, 8:47

        I recall seeing a bloke in a kilt next to Susie Wolff’s (then Stoddart) DTM car at Brands Hatch in 2006.

        • BasCB (@bascb) said on 27th June 2012, 13:08

          That is exactly the kind of thing that would make sense to me.
          Either something that fits the driver (a kind of standard bearer for the “champion” going into the race) or to represent the organizing country

          • MazdaChris (@mazdachris) said on 28th June 2012, 15:41

            The only thing with using ‘grid boys’ for female drivers, is that it makes an implicit sexual connection between the driver and the person holding their grid number. While I do agree it’s fairly archaic to have grid girls, isn’t the problem more that there are people being employed solely for the sexual gratification of people around them, rather than some kind of gender inequality? If you replace women with men for female drivers, what you’re doing, in effect, is confirming that they are there specifically because the driver is supposed to be physically attracted with them. Of course, we know that the purpose really is to add a little bit of eye candy for the (historically predominantly male) viewers. That people are being employed as eye candy at all is something which should be addressed, and gender equality in this case only reinforces the negative connotations of why these people are there in the first place.

    • BasCB (@bascb) said on 27th June 2012, 10:26

      When I think about it, I really would say it would be a lot nicer if the countries/cities hosting the event could do more with this. Put them in local costume, or in a special outfit for the Brazilian carnival, or something like that, so it makes it more of a show of the destination.

  4. GeeMac (@geemac) said on 27th June 2012, 6:39

    Start regularly doing 2.6 second pitstops McLaren…then we’ll talk!

  5. BasCB (@bascb) said on 27th June 2012, 7:28

    “It probably puts more onus on mechanical items because the aero stuff comes no matter what, everyone’s aero programmes are massive and they’re developing the car aerodynamically and normally the things that are compromised short-term are mechanical items. Usually you’re saying that’s only worth a tenth when you can get two-and-a-half or three tenths from aero. It won’t be like that now, it puts the onus on mechanical items. Aero is still key and first order, but it just means you’ve got to find time to do the rest of the stuff that perhaps you wouldn’t have done earlier.”

    from that second McLaren piece about the development race this year. If true, we might well see more mechanical issues coming up when teams push the limits on those. Bringing us closer to what @hohum mentions about just pushing the car would give a good result but also a high chance of failure and we don’t need a button to do as “proposed” in the COTD

  6. Girts (@girts) said on 27th June 2012, 7:44

    As for the COTD, it’s obviously ironic but, frankly speaking, I also miss those times when reliability was another factor that could make unexpected changes to the race results. Unfortunately, as James Allen said, teams cannot unlearn how to do quality control.

    • Optimaximal (@optimaximal) said on 27th June 2012, 12:09

      It’s less the teams and more the engines – the engine freeze has succeeded in this regard. The 2014 spec will likely usher in a new era of unreliability (especially PURE engines, as they have no real track record to fall back on) but it won’t take long before they’re standardised and controlled too.

  7. AndrewTanner (@andrewtanner) said on 27th June 2012, 8:27

    Very good point from @sircoolbeans ;) Like it.

    How do we go about finding out what the fastest official stationary pit-stop is? Is that data even available or just under the umbrella of the pit-stop as a whole?

    • Bullfrog (@bullfrog) said on 27th June 2012, 9:33

      Good question, I think FIA publishes only the “pit lane time” in its timing data. I guess only the stops on TV have a stationary time as well, and the teams will time them for their own training or (if you’re McLaren) spin purposes.

      I wish they’d make more of the stationary times, they’re one of the most staggering things about Formula One. At the moment they’re buried in a caption that I keep missing because I’m watching the track to see where the driver rejoins…

    • bag0 (@bag0) said on 27th June 2012, 9:54

      As @bullfrog says the FIA only measures the pit lane time. The stationary stops are measured by the teams, so that is why noone can be sure about the record.

    • Optimaximal (@optimaximal) said on 27th June 2012, 12:11

      I’m not sure if it’s shown on TV at the moment as the racing is interesting enough to keep my interest, but previously they’ve calculated stationary time by taking the time to traverse the pitlane at the speed limit away from the total time to get a roughly accurate result.

      Obviously this doesn’t take into account delays, speeding or other issues such as unsafe releases/jostling between multiple cars/etc.

  8. raymondu999 (@raymondu999) said on 27th June 2012, 8:29

    Perhaps McLaren could be the first ever team to have both the fastest AND slowest pitstop of the year?

  9. Neel Jani (@neelv27) said on 27th June 2012, 9:29

    Can’t believe such COTD gets selected!

  10. regulus (@regulus) said on 27th June 2012, 12:41

    What record? The Most Clumsy?

  11. Mallesh Magdum (@malleshmagdum) said on 27th June 2012, 14:18

    thats why we say ‘Incredible !ndia’ u cant understand our nation, until u cme here and have a culture shock, much like we ppl do when we visit different parts of our country :p. As far as drivers are concerned. We have Aditya Patel(under Audi driver program) who has a realistic chance. Motorsport very expensive here. Probably only 1pc of the country’s youngster can afford a career in motorsports. Karun Chandhok had to mortgage his house thrice to enter F1! @girts

    • Kimi4WDC said on 29th June 2012, 5:15

      You will be surprised how many “drivers” have to take mortgage loan to finance their driving in Europe. Starting all the way from karting, and most of them never go higher. It’s very common.

      A girl have way higher chance of getting decent sponsors due to fact she is a girl, with average driving over a certain winner. That’s common too.

  12. GeorgeTuk (@georgetuk) said on 27th June 2012, 18:09

    What I still fail to understand is why have both pit jacks as the development, surely playing it safe with the backup jack would have been better?

    And really its pretty naive to put this out on weekend where they failed badly in the pit stop straight after. Keep news like this for better days!

  13. beneboy (@beneboy) said on 27th June 2012, 18:30

    SM “50 milliseconds is one place this year, sometimes two places”

    A question to any engineers etc who may know:
    Could the closeness of lap times be down to the new tires becoming the main limiting factor in ultimate performance ?

    Could it be that the tires can only go so fast depending on track type/conditions and that no matter how much better the car/driver performs they can only make almost negligible gains in performance ?

    I’m not having a moan about the Pirelli’s, just wondering if this could be the case and as we tend to get a few geeks (and I mean that as a compliment) here who know more about this than I do it’d be nice to know what you think.

  14. DaveW (@dmw) said on 27th June 2012, 18:35

    I’m surprised that Mercedes is interested in Hamilton. Perhpas Haug has fond memories of him from the 07-09 days? I would think they would go for one of the several non-Vettel Germans on the grid who are plenty quick enough. Rosberg may not be a quick as Vettel/Alonso/Hamilton, but right now it’s not raw pace that’s holding them back. Rosberg is plenty fast to win a title in a strong, reliable car. Rosberg and Glock would work fine and they would save a big stack of Deutsch Marks on that choice.

    • Kimi4WDC said on 29th June 2012, 5:23

      I don’t see anything wrong with Schumacher, why would they replace him? He gives a lot of attention to the team, he is ethical and he keeping his team mate more than fair, unlike some top team.

      Unless of course, both Rosberg and Schummi drive like crap at the moment. (Not to car’s full potential)

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