F1 Fanatic round-up
In the round-up: Britain’s All-Party Parliamentary Group for Democracy in Bahrain calls for the cancellation of the Bahrain Grand Prix.
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“Last year’s race was held under conditions of martial law. Three hundred protesters were arrested, some spending months in jail.”
“I wish they could sort things out. If there are any problems, which there are obviously – people are not making trouble if there are no problems – then they could get it sorted out.”
“There has been a week of protests in the kingdom ahead of the country’s Formula One Grand Prix from April 19 to 21.”
“Bernie Ecclestone and Jean Todt, the men who make the decisions about F1 being in Bahrain, do not want to be involved in Bahraini politics. They don’t want to have to deal with the perceptions that exist that F1 is somehow supporting the government and condoning the violence.”
“The design of the circuit is among the best in the world but the facilities for the teams and fans are the worst on the calendar.”
Monisha Kaltenborn: “I am not trying to justify [Esteban Gutierrez's crash], but to not have any Friday sessions to practice in, and then come in to a world of F1 where there is a lot of pressure because there are only a limited amount of opportunities to score points, is very hard.”
Mark Hughes: “The crucial moment of understanding for Alonso came in Friday afternoon practice as he did his qualifying simulation on the very delicate soft option tyre.”
“This was a weird moment down at Red Bull on Saturday morning. I captured it as a mechanic sprayed an extinguisher on to the exhaust and engine cover, but I couldn’t see if there had actually been a fire.”
“[GT4 racer Zoe] Wenham believes she can compete on an equal footing with men. ‘It’s really good to be in the helmet and the car. You’re all equal at that point – there’s no long hair or big blue eyes coming into play,’ she says. ‘There’s always going to be these comments, ‘Oh, you were beaten by that girl,’ but there are more women in motor racing than ever. So hopefully someone can prove Sir Stirling wrong.’”
“While I have the utmost respect for Sir Stirling Moss and all that he has achieved, his opinions on the suitability of women to drive Formula 1 cars in the modern era is really rather inconsequential.”
— Fernando Alonso (@alo_oficial) April 16, 2013
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Comment of the day
Are the tyre complaints just history repeating?
We were faced with the same problem last year: the teams complained bitterly about the tyres. And yet, by the middle of the season, they understood the tyres so well that the complaints simply melted away.
Did anybody protest the tyres after the German Grand Prix? I can’t recall a single complaint, much less a chorus of them. Even the drivers who were the most critical – Mark Webber and Michael Schumacher – quietened down before long. The tyres worked in 2012 once the teams and drivers understood them; it was just a matter of figuring them out.
I think we need to take the teams’ complaints with a grain of salt as they will always lobby for what is best for them. Are they really struggling as much as they are making out, or are they just trying to get out of doing some work and maybe pick up an advantage along the way?
From the forum
Happy birthday to Walton174!
On this day in F1
Alain Prost scored a home win for himself and Renault in the French Grand Prix at Paul Ricard 30 years ago today.
Prost’s team mate Eddie Cheever finished third behind Nelson Piquet.
Niki Lauda and Elio de Angelis retired from the race, but not before this battle between the normally-aspirated McLaren-Cosworth and the turbocharged Lotus-Renault:
Image © Red Bull/Getty