Montezemolo says F1 races should be shorter

F1 Fanatic round-up

Luca di Montezemolo, Ferrari, Monza, 2012In the round-up: Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo wants shorter F1 races which start later in the day.


Top F1 links from the past 24 hours:

Shorten F1 races – Di Montezemolo (BBC)

“How long is the race, an hour and a half? Maybe this is too long for young people. Maybe I’m wrong but we have to look at how we can improve the show.”

Montezemolo suggests shorter and later F1 races (Reuters)

“I don’t think it’s good to race in July and August at two o’clock in the afternoon, when the people are at the sea and on vacation. If you look at a sport like soccer, they play six o’clock, seven o’clock, eight o’clock.”

Vettel rules out Monza victory bid (Autosport)

“I think it will be a pretty difficult race. In terms of strategy I think everyone is looking at the same thing. Therefore it is difficult to do something, or try something different.”

Alonso: Fault cost me ‘easiest pole’ (Sky)

“It’s a shame because it was the easiest pole position for us. We did a [one minute] 24.1 in Q2 with an easy lap and looking at it they [McLaren] did 24.0 in Q3.”

Button’s manager to look after Di Resta (The Telegraph)

“[Richard] Goddard, who takes care of Button’s financial affairs and will perform a similar role for di Resta, added that the Scottish driver was ‘a serious talent and a star of the future’.”

Ferrari F2012 – revised front wing (F1)

“In Italy Ferrari are again using the new front wing introduced at Spa, different in all its components and not – as one might expect for Monza – simply a standard wing with the upper flaps removed to reduce the downforce level.”

Sir Jackie Stewart believes Lewis Hamilton should spurn Mercedes (The Guardian)

“I personally would have stayed with McLaren. They have the resources and the money. They have the commitment and also have huge experience. He would not be here today without McLaren, so there is a degree of loyalty that I think you should always have.”


Comment of the day

After all the slipstreaming we saw in qualifying, could McLaren be planning more of the same for the race?

I?d like to see that ?ǣ a positive example of teamwork, which has gained a negative reputation in F1 with team-mates in front being moved over, lapped cars holding up leaders and so on.

It?s a good old oval racing tactic ?ǣ two team mates were putting it to good use to pull out a gap near the end of this year?s Indy 500 (Dario Franchitti and Scott Dixon). That?s proper drafting, though ?ǣ not the artificial DRS kind, but no doubt they did it at Monza too, back in the day.

The McLaren drivers are skilful enough to make it work ?ǣ even if Hamilton?s recent actions out of the car have suggested he?s not the sharpest tool in the box, once the visor?s down he?s been impressive this year (I?m thinking of his tyre conservation).

From the forum

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On this day in F1

F1 returned to a remodelled Spa-Francorchamps for the 2007 Belgian Grand Prix, five years ago today. Kimi Raikkonen led home team mate Felipe Massa for a Ferrari one-two.

As ever there was no love lost between the McLaren team mates who vigorously disputed third place at the start. Fernando Alonso came out on top, Lewis Hamilton accepting fourth.

Off the track, McLaren had been stung by the FIA’s verdict in the Ferrari spying row, which excluded them from the constructors’ championship and fined them $100m.

Image ?? Ferrari spa/Ercole Colombo

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87 comments on Montezemolo says F1 races should be shorter

  1. Kenny (@kenny) said on 9th September 2012, 5:41

    IMHO the races aren’t long enough. Monza is almost a sprint now…a bit over an hour if all goes well. I think the perfect time is two hours. The rules don’t need to be changed, but races should be planned to last as close to two hours as possible.

  2. Alfie (@alfie) said on 9th September 2012, 6:18

    Jackie Stewart’s comments seem to suggest Hamilton has already moved.

    • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 9th September 2012, 8:29

      They do, but I don’t think he knows something that we are unaware of. He specifically suggests that Hamilton has cut ties with McLaren, but adds nothing to indicate that he has already decided to go to any other team, be it Mercedes or HRT or whoever. And separating himself from one team without being able to step straight into another is the kind of thing Stewart would criticise a driver for, because there is no guarantee that there will be a seat waiting. Nick Heidfeld made this mistake in 2009 – he left Sauber and had rather tan talk to other teams with vacancies, he had his heart set on Mercedes. But then Michael Schumacher got the second Mercedes seat, and Europe shut down for the Christmas-New Year break. By the time things started up again, it was mid-January, and Heidfeld had no time to arrange a new deal in time for the season to start.

      If things have gotten to the point where there are irreconcileable differences between McLaren and Hamilton, then Hamilton doesn’t really have a choice but to become a free agent. He certainly won’t have the problem Nick Heidfeld had, since he is practically assured of finding a seat somewhere. But there has been nothing to suggest that the relationship between McLaren and Hamilton has crumbled so much that Hamilton would step out into the paddock without a safety net. Why take a chance on doing that when he would make life easier for himself by staying with McLaren until he knows he has a contract elsewhere, and then making the transition across without having to resort to being a free agent?

  3. the_sigman (@sigman1998) said on 9th September 2012, 6:19

    Today it was the 2007 Italian GP:

  4. Dave (@dworsley) said on 9th September 2012, 6:56

    We should be making the races longer not shorter.

  5. Lustigson (@lustigson) said on 9th September 2012, 8:07

    Races should actually be longer. Not just because I’d like them to be, but because races have been roughly 300 km in length for ages, but the average speeds have gone up. So I think we now need 325 or 350 km races to keep in line with history. That means longer races: 1 hour 45 minutes or so.

    • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 9th September 2012, 8:21

      @lustigson – The only problem with that is that the circuits differ wildly. Compare Monza to Singapore, for instance: Monza is 5.79km long, whilst Marina Bay is 5.07km in length. In terms of the total race length, there is less than three kilometres’ difference between the two; Monza is 306.72km, while Singapore is 309.08km. But more important is the time difference. Despite the races being held over very similiar lengths, Sebastan Vettel won the 2011 Italian Grand Prix in one hour, twenty minutes and forty-six seconds – but he won the Singapore Grand Prix in one hour, fifty-nine minutes and four seconds.

      Making Monza a 350km race will certainly push it closer to one hour and forty-five minutes, but adding another nine laps to the Singapore Grand Prix to dial it up to 350km would mean adding almost twenty more minutes to it.

  6. Fisha695 (@fisha695) said on 9th September 2012, 8:16

    I think the races should actually be earlier in the day… Then again I live on the US East Coast and I usually am up til 5am(ish) so I think the races should be moved earlier so I can watch them at all starting at like 2am.


  7. beninlux (@beninlux) said on 9th September 2012, 8:26

    Luca has forgotten the hundreds of thousands of fans of WEC, and Le Mans. They have much more road-relevant technologies, hybrids, diesels, cockpits and cost much less money
    I stayed awake for around 30 hours to watch this year’s race at La Sarthe this year. It’s a highlight of my year going there every year. People wanting shorter races can watch GP2 (which I also watch) but I think F1 should be the ultimate challenge of (wo)man and machine, so having short races would ruin it

  8. I don’t agree with Stewart. I think a new atmosphere for Hamilton would be better for him, a place where he does not know everybody from age 11 or 12, and thus will be treated not like a boy, but as a man who is responsible for his own actions. I think if he goes to Mercedes, he can really exhibit his ability to outperform a poor-performing car.

    • yeah, i agree, it is time for him to move and grow. And in a Mercedes we will really see if Rosberg is good or not (i think not really). Hamilton winning in a merc will make him a superstar. What has he to proove in McLaren ? Button move was very dangerous and brave, he matched Hamilton, he worked hard and up his game, they are quite even. Should Ham win, the credit will go mostly to the car. The best for Hamilton is to defy Alonso in the Ferrari or make Merc a winning car and then we will see the truth.

  9. A friend saw the McLaren tweet and asked me how come Ferrari, holder of most of the Formula One records, have less one-two finishes than both McLaren and Williams. I’m not sure(would be great if someone confirmed it) but I think it is because Ferrari’s dominance era came during the refuelling era and it was their tendency to fuel up Michael and Rubens slightly higher than the other guys which is why they lost out in qualifying to the likes of Montoya and Coulthard, but come raceday they were almost always so fast that they were able to leapfrog the pretenders by pitting further into the race.

  10. Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 9th September 2012, 8:55

    Where is the appeal of a Formula 1 race that is no longer than a GP2 race?

  11. mark (@markp) said on 9th September 2012, 8:55

    Chavball lasts 90 minutes. F1 should have 3hr races. Next to improve the show will be reality tv shows based on a few of the top teams and they will take up 10 times the tv time of the races (5 times on bbc)

  12. Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 9th September 2012, 8:56

    “I personally would have stayed with McLaren. They have the resources and the money. They have the commitment and also have huge experience. He would not be here today without McLaren, so there is a degree of loyalty that I think you should always have.”

    Very strange comments from Sir Jackie here – I understand perfectly what he’s saying, but I find the use of the words “would have” to be a bizarre choice. Does he think Hamilton has already parted ways with McLaren? And if so, why isn’t he criticising Hamilton for jumping ship with no real idea of where he will land?

  13. Bullfrog (@bullfrog) said on 9th September 2012, 9:00

    BBC coverage must be ahead of its time! No wonder they quoted Luca Montezemolo saying that. They have a highlights show, perfect for young people with short attention spans. And we have to wait till late afternoon to see it, and elsewhere in the interview he says:

    “I don’t think it’s good to race in July and August at 2pm when the people are in the sea or on vacation,” he said. “Soccer plays at 6, 7, 8 o’clock.”

    (Kind of agree with him on this, I’ve never much liked 1 or 2pm as a start time.)

    Maybe he thinks it’s the right thing to say in Italy – doesn’t the Sky Italia pay-TV deal start next year?(with half the races, similar to Britain)

    • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 9th September 2012, 9:03

      Maybe he thinks it’s the right thing to say in Italy

      You’re only working this out now?

      Luca doesn’t really care for what the right thing for the rest of the world is. Italy is his only concern.

  14. Atticus (@atticus-2) said on 9th September 2012, 9:17

    Perhaps Hamilton was not all out with a 24.0 either knowing he only really had Alonso as an adversary. (Both were more or less quicker than Button and Massa come Q.)

  15. verstappen (@verstappen) said on 9th September 2012, 9:48

    Race lenght is fine, but it also depends what happens – more importantly what we get to see from what happens! First they need to fix the regie.

    Timing to me is not important, I record lots of races anyway.

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