F1 Fanatic round-up
In the round-up: Williams tipped to switch to Mercedes engines in 2014.
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Auto Motor und Sport claim Williams will use Mercedes engines next year with Toro Rosso tipped to take over their Renault engine supply.
“With the benefit of hindsight we were too ambitious last year. We had a competitive car and made decisions to make very big changes in the expectation of aggressively making a big step forward – and that backfired. In hindsight we should have evolved what was already a competitive car.”
“When John Iley (head of aerodynamics signed from McLaren) came over last year we tried to be a bit too clever with the blown diffuser and it screwed us up. If we had just continued on our normal path we probably would have been in the midfield by now, so we’ve learned the hard way.”
“On May 10, at the Spanish Grand Prix near Barcelona, Ecclestone referred a question about the progress of the latest agreement to a comment by Ferrari SpA chairman Luca Cordero di Montezemolo who told reporters that a deal was ‘very close.’ Ferrari owns the sport’s oldest and most successful team. Most of the 11 teams haven’t seen a first draft of the proposed accord, the people said.”
“If you’re implying that there is a number one and number two driver within the team, that is absolutely not the case. The same decision would have been taken had it been the other way around. Nobody wants team orders, but there is more to it. We are representing Mercedes on the track, massive amounts of money are involved, plus hundreds of people back at the factory. Sometimes you have to limit the risk to bring the cars home.”
“This would not be easy to organise but I am still very passionate about the sport. I still have the capability to steer the wheel and if down the road the right opportunity would arise it would be hard not to be curious about it and look at it.”
“It’s definitely somewhere the driver influences the outcome more than at other circuits. The effect is more apparent in junior categories where the drivers are all inexperienced on street circuits. In F1 you still need a fast car to get on pole because the 21 guys you’re racing against have all been here before as well – but experience of the track might be the thing that makes the difference, for example, between making it into Q3 and just missing out. Pastor Maldonado proved that a couple of years ago when he made it into Q3 in a Williams that shouldn’t have been there – because he knows this circuit.”
“I have had it before where my drinks bottle has failed and you initially start shivering and you lose your eyesight. And then you start blacking out.”
Mark Webber: “You get five fast laps per weekend. (Car) upgrades are data-driven. Driver feedback is minimal. Tyres are the biggest factor.”
“Being able to secure a good vessel is all about knowing the right people. It is, essentially, a hierarchy that starts with Prince Albert of Monaco and members of the royal family, moves down to the F1 drivers, then the sponsors who spend the most money, and so on down the line.”
“For all his cool headgear, Jean-Eric Vergne is much more Jean-Pierre Jarier than he is Francois Cevert. A wide, soft approach. Lots of aggression with the brakes, the steering and the release of same. Lots of car-control, of course, but none of the straight lines that typified Francois, particularly in 1973.”
— IZOD IndyCar Series (@IndyCar) May 24, 2013
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Comment of the day
With the Indianapolis 500 coming up tomorrow, William Katz tries to square the circle on oval racing:
If you browse the comments section of this site you’ll see a split, pretty much right down the middle, of F1 fans at the current state of the sport: Are the tyres too much, is DRS good for F1, is the racing too artificial? But what we can’t deny is that we’re here because of the outcry of fans at a lack of close, wheel to wheel racing and overtaking.
Ignoring, for a minute, that F1 may or may not have gone too far, all the things the fans are looking for from a race are a part of IndyCar racing, and yes, that includes ovals. We fall all over ourselves when the calendar rolls around to Monza, a circuit where high top speeds and daring overtakes on very high speed, open corners are the highlight. We talk up a storm about how slip streaming is crucial and about the thrill of watching F1 cars drive around with next to no downforce. Why then should we deride the Indianapolis 500? Or oval racing in general?
Maybe people think that every oval is the same, and you just fly around in a circle at full throttle? The IndyCar website has track maps and as you’ll notice, none of the ovals are big lazy circles. Pocono is a triangle, Dallas and Iowa are asymmetrical ovals of different sizes, Indy and Milwaulkee are drastically different squared-ovals.
Is it because Monza is the exception? I’ll grand you that one race in nineteen is more rare than six in nineteen, but still; most IndyCar racing is done on incredible road circuits, and the street courses tend to generate better racing than most of the F1 street racing venues.
It would seem to be that if the current form of F1 is up someone’s alley, than IndyCar oval racing should be on that same person’s radar; it’s everything you want out of F1 and nothing you don’t. If it’s just a matter of the course having 3 or 4 corners, or if it’s the atmosphere, well. that’s just snobbery.
William Katz (@Hwkii)
From the forum
- Video of the thrilling four-wide finish in yesterday’s Indy Lights race at Indianapolis
- Monaco GP2 feature race pole sitter Johnny Cecotto Jnr is excluded from today’s race after causing a 14-car pile-up yesterday
Happy birthday to Sumedh!
On this day in F1
Lewis Hamilton won a rain-soaked Monaco Grand Prix five years ago today despite picking up a puncture after hitting a barrier:
Image © Williams/LAT, Red Bull/Getty