Hakkinen tips McLaren to stay ahead of Mercedes

F1 Fanatic round-upPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

Sergio Perez, McLaren, Jerez, 2013In the round-up: Mika Hakkinen expects Mercedes to have a slow start to 2013.

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Hakkinen rules out Hamilton title (BBC)

“I have a strong feeling McLaren are on top form this year. Mercedes were not exactly up to the speed I expected them to be, so I don’t see them competing too much this year.”

Whitmarsh: F1’s era of excess is over (Autosport)

“In the 1980s, it was all about excess, and that was one of the allures of F1. We were in the decades of excess, but we have to grow up and realise as a sport that there comes a point where that isn’t attractive anymore.”

Keeping Track – Episode 21 – 2013 Formula 1 Rolex Australian Grand Prix (Australian Grand Prix via Podomatic)

David Coulthard defends the Australian Grand Prix following recent criticism.”

Eric Boullier Encouraged by Driver Feedback (Lotus)

“The general pace of the car looked promising with each of our drivers. Of course, lap times are not representative of the order at this early stage of the season, but to be at the front of the pack without deliberately setting out to do so is always a plus. It doesn?t mean we will be World Champions, but we know the car works well and that?s a big credit to everyone involved.”

Interview with Scuderia Ferrari F1 driver Davide Rigon (Dominik Wilde Motorsport)

“My main role is developing the car in the simulator, as well as driving at aero testing and last year I was also able to continue the development of the Formula 1 car at the Young Driver test at Magny-Cours.”

Super successful know when to pounce (FT, registration required)

“Mr Ecclestone understood that F1 team owners were engineers and former drivers, but not as wily as him: he realised how valuable the commercial rights could become, and took control in a secret auction with only one bidder ?ǣ him.”

F1 boss Ecclestone says he’s not subject to U.S. laws in bribery case (Autoweek)

“Formula One CEO Bernie Ecclestone says that he is not subject to U.S. laws in a formal affidavit he has submitted to the New York State Supreme Court.”

Caterham Q&A (Sky)

“We don’t say [that we will score points]. We hope – we’re keeping our fingers crossed. I think this season, when you have young drivers of limited experience you expect them to seize any form of opportunity. We are not in the points, let’s face it, unless we do a great job over the season and reach that stage later in the season. But that’s on merit; if there’s a strange race with a lot of failures then that’s something you can’t rule out.”


Comment of the day

Roger2012 is skipping this year’s Canadian Grand Prix:

I would usually be going to Montreal, have been every years there?s been an F1 race held there since 1989 but after the last two years I’ve decided not to attend this year.

Reason I won?t be going is purely down to the DRS wing. We have always sat at the hairpin because that’s where all the best action tended to be, However the last two years there has been nothing going on there because nobody wants to complete a pass just before the DRS zone which seems to be ridiculously effective at Montreal.

I saw tons of example in 2011 and 2012 of drivers having a good run to pass into the hairpin yet backing out the pass to ensure there behind at the detection line, including when Hamilton was looking to pass Alonso late in the race where both seemed to be intentionally trying to slow down to try and be the one to get DRS, Utterly ridiculous!

Also consider that there are no grandstands down the long straight so all the DRS-ing happens where fans at the track can?t see it (not that it’s exciting to watch anyway).

I think this highlights an issue with having ‘overtaking zones’, It puts drivers off racing elsewhere round the track, especially if DRS is really effective on that track.

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On this day in F1

F1 teams were testing at two different tracks on this day ten years ago. While Ricardo Zonta posted the fastest time for Toyota at Paul Ricard, where McLaren were also testing, Michael Schumacher was breaking the Fiorano lap record in his F2003-GA.

Image ?? McLaren/Hoch Zwei