In the round-up: Jenson Button respond to Lewis Hamilton’s suggestion that drivers at McLaren have too little freedom.
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“Button admitted to the Press Association he was ‘very surprised’ to hear what his former team-mate had said and gave McLaren his full support. ‘The freedom I have in this team is phenomenal.'”
Force India deputy director Bob Fernley: “CVC is not interested in developing the sport, it’s interested in making as much money as possible and then selling it. The income split doesn?óÔé¼Ôäót support Formula One.”
“Vodafone has been reconsidering its involvement with Formula One since bitter acrimony broke out in April over the Bahrain Grand Prix, which went ahead despite a violent uprising in the country in which thousands of anti-government protesters confronted police.”
“Q: Eric said recently that your Renault experience is still somewhat of a trauma for you – in what way?
RG: That was all last year. Sure, if you get fired from Formula One and come back after one year you desperately want to prove that you deserve it. You probably want to prove it twice as much as anybody else. When I was talking with Gerard Lopez last December he said to me, ?óÔé¼?£When I take a decision I never go back on it.?óÔé¼Ôäó So he took the decision to keep me and will not question it any more. It is done – and from now on we look forward to the season and maybe even beyond…”
“Despite the influx of deals, sponsorship accounts for only 15 per cent of F1?óÔé¼Ôäós $1.5bn (?é?ú1bn) annual turnover. The real money is still in race-sanctioning fees, which account for 34 per cent, with broadcasting rights totalling 32 per cent.”
“Despite a trend to late bookings, the hotels are up 15.3 per cent on last year’s race, which attracted 313,700 spectators.”
“Following discussions with teams, there has been no agreement on whether or not physios should be formally included [as one of a team’s maximum of 60 operational staff], as the extent of their involvement with the car varied throughout the grid.”
“It’s the best you can really get nowadays as a young driver, so I feel well prepared. Of course, you would always like to drive more but everything has gone well and I’m ready.”
Emerson Fittipaldi is now writing a column for McLaren – here’s his first.
This week’s article by me for Unibet looks at the odds for the first race of the season.
“Fear: Lotus’s unreliability in testing will translate to the racetrack, leading to mountains of dull jokes about Kimi Raikkonen eating ice cream. #YouAreBoringAndYouKnowIt”
— Craig Scarborough (@ScarbsF1) March 14, 2013
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Comment of the day
@MrGrieves was one of several people unimpressed at seeing Rodolfo Gonzalez land the reserve driver spot at Marussia.
In last year’s GP2 I would confidently say there were only two drivers who were worse than him on the grid. Ricardo Teixeira and Giancarlo Serenelli. He might only be a reserve driver but this is a step too far on the pay driver era and a step closer to Giovanni Lavaggi and Taki Inoue style drivers coming back.
All the new drivers reaching F1 this season, all of which I can understand and give a good chance too. Might have preferred to have seen Glock and Kobayashi but still these replacements are certainly in the top ten of young drivers.
Gonzalez has been awful for four seasons in GP2! His only points last season was when 14 other drivers retired from a sprint race. A joke of a choice but money talks over talent here I guess.
From the forum
Happy birthday to Franky!
On this day in F1
Jack Fairman was born 100 years ago today. Fairman was a regular feature on the British Grand Prix grid in the fifties, as well as making a few visits to Monza.
Fairman’s best successes came in sports car racing, including a victory in the 1959 Nurburgring 1,000km, sharing an Aston Martin DBR1 with Stirling Moss.
He shared a car with Moss again at the soaked 1961 British Grand Prix at Aintree. The car was the four-wheel-drive Ferguson P99, which should have proved well-suited to the conditions, but Moss was later disqualified because Fairman had been given a push start.
Fairman’s last Grand Prix came two years later, and following his retirement he lived to the age of 88.
Image ?é?® McLaren/Hoch Zwei