F1 Fanatic round-up
In the round-up: Lotus team principal Eric Boullier thinks Kimi Raikkonen could win in Germany from tenth on the grid.
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“I don’t see much of a downside to Kimi to be honest. He came back to his speed level very quickly. I think he struggled a little bit with the strength and pushiness of the others and also with getting back into the Formula One format over weekends. But that is all history. Now he is there – and I would not be surprised if he won tomorrow.”
Jenson Button: “We’ve proved with Lewis at Silverstone in Q2 with the extreme wets, that when the car is working, the car is quick. The problem is it’s on a knife edge: if you get it working, it works well, as it should because the car is good. But we struggled to get it to that point.”
“I expected him to win more world championships that is for sure. I think he has got the skills and the natural talent, but what he has got to do is match that with mind management and mental discipline and that means sacrifices in all sorts of ways.”
“Having sentenced a German banker to eight-and-a-half years in jail for crimes including accepting £28 million in bribes from Ecclestone, Munich’s state prosecutors are, according to local reports, stepping up their investigation into Formula One’s chief executive.”
Ross Brawn: “Rather peculiarly, Nico was pretty happy with his dry tyre performance and not the wet and Michael was vice versa. Nico was the fastest on the prime tyre, but struggled to get the temperature into the intermediate for Q2. Michael was the opposite.”
Details on Grosjean’s KERS failure and Vettel’s anger at being held up by Webber.
Fernando Alonso: “Obviously it will depend on how the start is. Sometimes you feel a good start straightaway and you concentrate on the first corner line. If you feel too much wheelspin or too little, you try to cover it a little bit to protect your position, but obviously the race is long, 67 laps in front of us and everything isn’t finished at the first corner. So far, our starts have probably been the best this year so I’m not too worried at the moment.”
“We are very disappointed for Felipe, who did not find an acceptable grip level in what was his only lap, the first in Q2, in which he could have done a time that would have got him through to the next part: it’s a shame, because he could definitely have been competitive in Q3, as was the case two weeks ago in England.”
“Built in 1932, the famous circuit was initially a 6.7km flat-out track that ran through dense forest and was used primarily for road-car testing.”
“On paper, 17th doesn’t look that impressive, but I’m not too disappointed. The track conditions were very tricky and of course that didn’t make it easier for me against the Supercup specialists.”
Comment of the day
Were the drivers wrong to complain about the conditions during qualifying? Some thoughts from Enigma:
It’s not all about being brave. The cars are design in a way that makes it impossible to drive when there’s a lot of standing water. We saw a glimpse of that today with Hulkenberg losing it on the curved straight.
Something similar was happening in Silverstone. Sometimes there’s just too much water for the car to handle and there’s nothing a driver can do about it. It’s not about being brave or skilled, it’s a lottery at that point.
Also, the spray and poor visibility. Some onboards looked downright scary today. It would be safe if there was only one driver on the track, but imagine someone spinning and pointing in the wrong direction at the end of the long straight – and then being hit by someone who’s going 280kph without seeing anything. That’s potentially deadly and that’s what the race direction wants to prevent.
I prefer a red flag to a driver getting hurt badly because they have no control whatsoever on what’s going on.
From the forum
- Who are your favourite F1 drivers and villains?
- Dario Franchitti is on pole again for the IndyCar race at Edmonton – be sure to join us for it on F1 Fanatic Live tomorrow
- A fine win for in the GP2 feature race in Germany after starting on a wet track on slick tyres
Happy birthday to Phillip C’de Baca!
On this day in F1
Fernando Alonso won in Germany five years ago today. But it wasn’t the German Grand Prix – in fact, there was no German Grand Prix that year.
Alonso came out on top in a thrilling European Grand Prix at the Nurburgring. The McLaren driver snatched victory from Felipe Massa as rain fell at the end of the race.
The chaotic Grand Prix also saw a brief stoppage due to rain, Markus Winkelhock leading in his sole F1 start, and Lewis Hamilton returning to the track on a crane.
Will Alonso repeat his victory in Germany today?
Image © Lotus F1 Team/LAT