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. Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 9th September 2012, 9:59

    Mitch Evans has just won the GP3 championship. I’ll be very interested to see what happens to his career next, seeing as how he is Mark Webber’s protege (the ‘MW’ in ‘MW Arden’ stands for ‘Mark Webber’), but he’s not a member of the Red Bull Young Driver Programme – and title rival Antonio Felix da Costa is. I’d expect da Costa to become a test driver for Toro Rosso next year, or maybe even get placed somewhere like HRT, but I have no idea what might happen with Evans.

    It will be interesting to watch, because I think there was a lot of talent in this year’s GP3 field. I reckon that (at the very least) Evans, da Costa, Ellinas and (in a few years – he’s only sixteen) Visoiu all have what it takes to succeed in Formula 1. Abt and Vainio both look pretty good, top.

  2. Maksutov (@maksutov) said on 9th September 2012, 10:08

    The length of the race is fine as it is. However, here is another good article with Montezemolo hitting out on costs and introduction of V6 engines. He makes a good point and i must say I agree with him.

    • I don’t get the reluctance to Ferrari and the V6, I would have thought it would be great for them to release another Dino model!?

      • Maksutov (@maksutov) said on 9th September 2012, 12:34

        Well, I’m sure that Ferrari can afford it, and they will. But you can not deny that in the grand scheme of things, it was/is completely unnecessary to introduce engine changes. Especially at the time when cost cutting is critical.

  3. I don’t agree with Luca. The race length is fine, they are at least an hour less in time then in the 50s/60s.

    But when to put the race on. No way can the race be later, that would marginalise lots of the world and f1 supports and make it compete against the prime time TV shows and loose a lot of casual viewers. F1 being shown at current isn’t perfect, but it is possibly the best window for everyone. And I like 1 o’clock race starts, I have the TV to myself and no worries about interruptions. And it misses “most” Sunday football start times.

  4. tweedledee said on 9th September 2012, 10:27

    Official news just in…

    Montezemolo wants every car to have the same bodywork so there is no areo advantage for those teams who are creative and imaginative,

    he wants all the races to be at night in july and august (I didn’t even know F1 raced in august, I must have missed thoese ones) so he can sun him self on the beach without missing the action… Perhaps it would be far easier for hime to move to the uk where half the races already take place in the evening

    he would also like shorter races, presumably for teams like his who can’t manage to build a car reliable enought to last FP and quali and a whole race

    And finally he wants to use F1 to develop his road cars – but he”‘s not interested in fuel ecconomy, aero efficiancy, weight reduction, reliability or increasing safety because that is what F1 is already about – so what on earth is he wants to do??? – Re-invent traction and stability control??? Add rocket boosters and fly???

    Any other suggestions???

    This guy has LOST THE PLOT! I feel sorry for ferrari fans world-wide,

  5. Fisha695 (@fisha695) said on 9th September 2012, 11:05

    You have to think about the potential irony in this too. Had Ferrari been dominating the season to this point and somebody from McLaren or Mercedes or any other constructor said the same thing about the sport then Montezemolo would say they were crazy and it should stay as it is.

    • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 9th September 2012, 11:42

      Of course – Luca has always been like Flavio Briatore in that he believes the sport is only ever perfect when his team is dominating, but when they are losing, the sport is in dire trouble and only immediately acting upon their wisdom can save it.

  6. AndrewTanner (@andrewtanner) said on 9th September 2012, 11:49

    There is no pleasing LdM, is there? What a clown.

    Shorter races? Is he crazy? F1 at the best of times is paranoid about it’s image and how it’s perceived but on the global stage that is probably a healthy level of paranoia to have, but this guy just takes it too far. The fans will always tune in because they are fans of the sport! Don’t treat the fans like fickle idiots. The sun is blazing down outside today, there’s probably some lovely sunny places I could go but I choose to stay inside and watch the TV because I love this sport and I don’t need fools like him trying to trivialise me as a fan. F1 won’t be everyone’s cup of tea, and that’s fine, kids will tune in if they like and remain tuned in. How does having two races help? If anything, that takes up two days of your weekend, rather than just one at present.

    Races can’t be run at vastly different times because the sport has to appeal to a global audience. Football is broadcast early Sunday afternoons in the UK but you don’t see the Premier League getting itself in a mess over that.

    Put some faith in the existing fans, Luca. The ‘show’ is fine. F1 won’t always be the most exciting thing in the world, we have our share of dull races but at least it’s honest.

    • BasCB (@bascb) said on 9th September 2012, 15:32

      Don’t you think it would be just the thing F1 needed then @andrew? Make the saturday a test day, with no meaning at all for the race, and with no room for any support races off course. And then have a 30 minute F1 race from 4 PM and another 40 minute one from 6PM to give the fans value for money?

      Sure, they would probably be paying even more for it then now, but who cares about people in the grandstands, eh?

      I really fail to see the reasoning from LdM, apart from the fact he met Bernie and Todt before this weekend and now puts some soundbytes out for some kind of backroom dealing going on.

  7. petebaldwin (@petebaldwin) said on 9th September 2012, 12:15

    You might get a few younger people involved if you split the race in 2 and shorten them but you’d lose a lot of fans as well.
    You’d probably end up swapping some long time fans who go to races for a few kids who aren’t really that bothered. I’d certainly lose interest.
    You need to give races time to develop and the current race length does this.

    • tweedledee said on 9th September 2012, 22:09

      I think the only thing holding back the popularity of f1 is the RUBBISH race footage put out by FOM, if they got a better production team and didn’t save the best bits for their end of season highlights DVD I’m sure there would be loads more exciting footage/camera angles they could show

      I’m sure that would make the younger audiance more interested than having shorter races

  8. maxthecat said on 9th September 2012, 12:47

    Have we really become a species that can’t keep their attention on something for 90mins? Personally i think if you’re going to keep sanitising F1 and making it as safe as trip up the M1 then it’ll have to become about endurance. 3 hours would be a sufficient test of car and driver in the modern, safety obsessed Formula one.

  9. Txizzle (@txizzle) said on 9th September 2012, 15:11

    “Txizzle says Montezemolo should stop having opinions about everything involved in the sport.”

  10. BasCB (@bascb) said on 9th September 2012, 15:19

    Interview with Robert Kubica (polish) on youtube
    He looks good and fit there. Seems he has realized it will take a long while to get back to full fitness, but racing some Rally cars in the mean while will keep him race fit!

  11. james2488 (@james2488) said on 9th September 2012, 22:27

    To be fair, luca has got it all wrong, the length of the race is fine, the tyres, no refueling, the fact the grid is so close is all perfect, theres just one thing i would like to see and that is Caterham, Marrussia and HRT competitive, whether thats with help from the big teams or not, it just seems pointless them racing half the time, and i would lov to see more in season testing, like a silvertone, to give more people a chance to go and see the cars

  12. Paulocreed (@paulocreed) said on 10th September 2012, 19:29

    I’m a ferrari fan and even I think Luca is talking nonsense. We don’t need shorter races. The European races are fine for me. They’re at a quite decent time. It’s the other races like china, bahrain, australia, singapore that are difficult to deal with.

    “He said the sport needed to cut costs, promote innovation, increase technology transfer to road cars, increase testing,”

    These I agree with, the most important cost to cut should be the tickets for us fans to watch the show.

    I don’t know about you folks but I haven’t been to the sea or on a vacation in over 20 years. I simply can’t afford it. So, I think he’s too involved in his rich lifestyle to understand what most of the middle class or other people need/want. Forget about improving the show, if u want to improve the show, improve the racing and the rest will fall into place. I can’t stand them referring to F1 as a show. I’m not watching Formula 1 Entertainment am I? (reminiscent of WWE: World Wrestling Entertainment) formerly known as WWF (World Wrestling Federation). I can’t stand WWE anymore as the show has become a joke. I hope the same doesn’t happen to F1.

    Why don’t they add some obstacles like instead of taking a chicane, put a ramp they can jump off of and add some vehicle daredevil acrobatic into the mix. That’ll improve the show now won’t it?

    DRS and KERS are both good ideas that could be used in road cars, they’re just not implemented properly in the sport IMO. KERS is decent but DRS I don’t agree with.

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