Jules Bianchi, Ferrari, Abu Dhabi, 2011

Second Young Drivers’ Test to begin at Magny-Cours

F1 Fanatic round-upPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

Jules Bianchi, Ferrari, Abu Dhabi, 2011In the round-up: Ferrari, Mercedes and Force India begin their Young Drivers’ Test at Magny-Cours today.

Magny-Cours Young Drivers’ Test

The second Young Drivers’ Test begins at Magny-Cours today.

After the teams failed to agree on a single location for the test earlier this year, this is the second of three tests that will be held. Williams, HRT and Marussia have already had their test and McLaren, Red Bull, Toro Rosso, Lotus, Sauber and Caterham are yet to do theirs.

Today Jules Bianchi will drive for Ferrari, Sam Bird for Mercedes and Luiz Razia for Force India. Track action will take place between 9am to 1pm and 2pm to 5pm local time.

The 4.4km Magny-Cours track was last used by F1 for the 2008 French Grand Prix:


Top F1 links from the past 24 hours:

Mercedes plans major upgrade for test (Autosport)

Ross Brawn: “We weren’t understanding the tyres and concluded that the most effective thing we could do, rather than go straight to a Coanda [exhaust] system, was to understand the tyres, to get them a bit more under control.”

Sauber stay coy over Perez future (Sky)

“Asked if his late overtake of Fernando Alonso for second place may have actually harmed his chances of joining the Scuderia in 2013 given it was Ferrari’s home race, [Sergio Perez] replied: ‘Ask him [Alonso]. I don’t know. I’m sure… I’m not at all… I’m fighting for my team and will always fight for the team that I’m in.'”

Battle for F1 title boiling up nicely after Hamilton win (BBC)

“They used to be pretty close but they seem to have drifted apart, probably as a result of their different characters. Hamilton can be a bit of a spoilt kid at times and Button is a fairly grown-up man. That difference in characters does separate people.”

Straight to work in Maranello ahead of Singapore Montezemolo meets with Domenicali (Ferrari)

Stefano Domenicali: “It was a hard battle and I believe the Stewards? decision was right, above all given the clarification that was given out by the FIA after the last Bahrain Grand Prix. I?m also sure that Sebastian didn?t have any intention of jeopardising Fernando?s race: the German is a driver who is firm but fair.”

Stealthy Raikkonen builds up healthy points tally (Reuters)

“We look forward now obviously to the next races because it should suit our car much better.”

Renault makes alternator fix ??priority? for Singapore as Red Bull count cost of lost points (James Allen on F1)

Renault Sport head of track operations Remi Taffin: “This weekend has not been acceptable from either a performance or reliability point of view. We have to apologise to Red Bull for the two failures on Sebastian?s car, first in FP3 and now in the race.”

Alex Zanardi: ??a very lucky person?? (MotorSport)

“The driver who had rewritten CART?s rules of engagement, who had scrambled past Bryan Herta at the top of Laguna Seca?s Corkscrew, who had unlapped himself to win at Long Beach, who had invented the celebratory smoking doughnut, appeared unable to adapt to F1?s grooved tyres, twitchier turn-in and shorter braking distances; at one point he even reverted to Iron Age discs as his spiral tightened.”

Codemasters: bringing F1 to the masses (The Guardian)

“The official Formula One licence has a reputation for being one of the games industry’s poisoned chalices. Before Codemasters acquired it in 2008, it had been in the possession of Sony and Electronic Arts, both of whom professed frustration at their inability to persuade F1’s famously autocratic governing body, the FIA, to let them do anything imaginative with it. However, at last, Codemasters has demonstrably cracked that particular nut.”

How to have an F1 car in your living room (Yahoo)

“You sit in a lifelike, fully rendered Formula One cockpit, then stare ahead at three HD screens which have perfect versions of all the tracks from around the world ? right down to the pebbles of the run-off areas should it turn out you’re not Lewis Hamilton.”


Comment of the day

@Fixy was hoping to see GP2 championship leader Davide Valsecchi appear at the young drivers’ test.

Still surprised no one called Valsecchi: okay, he has half-an-year?s extra experience (he was injured for part of the 2008 season) but his overall GP2 results are better than Razia?s and as team mates Davide had the upper hand, as he has now that they are rivals. He had a bad period at Addax and iSport, but those days are over now, he has one of the best cars and is delivering.

Same goes for Luca Filippi: he had bad periods in his GP2 experience (but he scored many podiums for Super Nova, who became backmarkers once he left) but he has now proven that even one year after his last single-seater experience he has lost no pace at all, and beat everyone else to win at Monza. He probably had difficulties in getting to grips with the Dallaras, but now he?s ready for F1, as he?s shown. Why should old results have such an important effect?

On the other hand, Gonzalez should be nowhere other than in karts. His season has been appalling: he has one points finish to van der Garde?s one win, five podiums and one pole position and is 135 points, 16 positions behind his team mate in the standings.

Silly mistakes and just plain slowness have cost the team, who debuted last season but still took a win and a pole, a rise in performance for this season in the team?s championship.

From the forum

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to Sweetooth!

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

Mario Andretti won the Italian Grand Prix at Monza on this day 35 years ago.

Second place for Niki Lauda sealed the constructors’ championship for Ferrari and brought Lauda closer to his second drivers’ title. Alan Jones finished third for Shadow.

Having started from pole position, James Hunt was passed by Andretti on lap two, spun on lap 12 then spun again and retired for good 14 laps later.

Here are highlights from the race:

Image ?? Ferrari spa/Ercole Colombo