Differences between Hamilton and Rosberg “tiny”

F1 Fanatic Round-up

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Sepang, 2013In the round-up: Mercedes team principal Ross Brawn says there’s little to choose between Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg.

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Lewis and Nico are equals – Brawn (ESPN)

“I think Nico this weekend was perhaps a little bit happier with the balance and got the car where he wanted it for qualifying, and perhaps Lewis didn’t. But the differences are tiny; it’s not like one driver is having a disaster and the other is having a great day. I think it’s just the normal variances that you get, and quite frankly it’s great to see from both of them.”

Warwick clarifies penalty (Sky)

“We were about to leave the room when race control gave us some more footage of the way it had been executed and when we saw the footage I have to say it was dangerous – dangerous on several levels.”

Webber?s Singapore reprimand (MotorSport)

“Rules are rules. The inference of their application in Singapore is more important: Snap out of it, Mark!”

Vettel winning not exciting, says Mercedes chief (The Telegraph)

Toto Wolff: “People said it was boring when Michael (Schumacher) was winning all the time, now people say the same with Sebastian. This is the downside of success.”

Heikki Kovalainen, Bahrain, Caterham, 2013Caterham: Kovalainen an option for ’14 (Autosport)

Tony Fernandes: “It is no secret that I am close to Heikki and I have a lot of time for him, so let’s see.”

Sochi speeding up for F1 debut (Al Jazeera)

Oksana Kosachenko, former manager of Vitaly Petrov: “Formula One grand prix requires around 600 marshals who need to be not only trained for the event but also speak English. In that case we have a big problem as very small percentage of the population can speak English.”

F1 champions Red Bull battle constant threats of cyber attacks and data theft (V3)

“Triple championship-winning Formula One team Infiniti Red Bull Racing faces constant challenges from both internal and external threats as its technological developments provoke the interest of amateur hackers and rival teams.”

The thinking behind a decision ?ǣ Part 1 (Ferrari)

Head of strategic operations Neil Martin: “On Friday, we also carry out many simulations to determine how the others will tackle the race, based on their strong points.”

Nothing Comes Close (Jamey Price Photo)

Stunning Singapore Grand Prix photographs from @JameyPrice.

Tata showcase next-generation video distribution (F1)

“Consumer demand for quality, live content across different platforms is now the norm and with the emergence of bandwidth-hungry production workflows such as Ultra HD, quick turnarounds and availability of content across multiple platforms is becoming a hygiene factor for content owners.”

Rush (History vs Hollywood)

“Though it is suspected that there might have been a rear suspension failure, which is depicted in the Rush movie, footage of the crash shows Lauda’s car fishtailing as he loses control and veers into the wall, which could have also been the result of a damp spot on the track where he entered the bend.”

Essex man Russ Bost builds own ‘F1′ car (BBC)

“Inspired by Formula One, Mr Bost’s car is road legal with number plates and a tax disc and he uses it to run errands.”

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Comment of the day

Linda1 on the battle between Alain Prost and Michael Schumacher featured in yesterday’s round-up:

That battle between Prost and Schumacher could never happen today sadly.

The DRS would have got Prost by very easily. But equally importantly Schumacher would never have got the lead with today’s tyres and tyre regulations.

Schumacher won that race by planning two stops, but when tyre wear was better than expected and he found himself in the lead he ditched the planned second stop and tried to hold on to the end.

Today the tyres would have fallen to bits forcing a second stop or seeing him so uncompetitive Prost would be past easily. But also he?d have had to do a second stop anyway in order to run both compounds.
Linda1

From the forum

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On this day in F1

Mika Hakkinen reasserted himself in the 1998 championship battle by winning the Luxembourg Grand Prix at the Nurburgring (in Germany, of course) on this day 15 years ago.

The Ferrari drivers occupied the front row but Hakkinen passed Eddie Irvine early in the race then jumped Michael Schumacher at the first round of pit stops to regain a four-point margin over his title rival. David Coulthard claimed third.

Here’s the start of the race:

http://youtu.be/j15CuubVCrc?t=1m50s

Images ?? Daimler/Hoch Zwei, Caterham/LAT

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143 comments on Differences between Hamilton and Rosberg “tiny”

  1. Deej92 (@deej92) said on 27th September 2013, 0:16

    Would Kovalainen benefit Caterham greatly though? I think van der Garde (the driver who’d probably make way) is doing a good job at present, and he brings money. If they’re looking to replace a driver, I’m guessing Rossi is an option as well.

    • Sam Gibson (@samgibson) said on 27th September 2013, 0:30

      I’m slowly becoming a fan of Van Der Garde. He’s certainly done more to catch my eye than Pic. I’m thinking, that my feeling with Kovlalainen is that he’s had his chance with a big team – I see no long term gain, for the spectator at least, in him returning to the grid in a backmrker car. Obviously I can’t speak for Caterham and the benefits they might recieve from his experience, but as a fan of forumla 1 I’m not particularly excited by his potential return

    • Matthijs (@matthijs) said on 27th September 2013, 7:25

      Based on raw speed, I’d say Kovalainen is faster than (rookie) Vd Garde. But this year Vd Garde has shown that in the unique situation there is something to gain for Caterham, he steps up. So I think he is equally capable of collecting a point for Caterham. Above that, he has more money than Kovalainen and his learning curve is steeper.
      Replacing Vd Garde in 2014 will not automatically be an improvement.

      Apart from that, I think that it has always been the plan that Vd Garde and Kovalainen switch back in 2014 and that Vd Garde is being ‘used’ to pay for the development of the 2014-car for Heikki (using his sponsor money).

    • BasCB (@bascb) said on 27th September 2013, 7:27

      I too admit, that after taking a while to get onto pace, VdGarde has getting into it really well. As I rather did not have high expectations of him, I now find that he certainly earned the right to be in F1.

      Lets see how it all pans out.

    • WilliamB (@william-brierty) said on 27th September 2013, 8:05

      @deej92 Is Rossi an option? Really? It seems a bit pointless to me to replace Van der Garde with Rossi in that Rossi hasn’t been as impressive as Giedo was in GP2 last year. It seems to me that Van der Garde is a perfectly decent racing driver, but this is F1, we want the best. And with Sergio Cananmasas not being an option, we arrive with Heikki.

      I’d be very happy to Kovalainen back in F1, a man who probably had his best year in F1 in 2012, featuring some stunning qualifying laps such as the one in Valencia where he out-paced both Toro Rossos on pure merit. He made a mistake in 2012. He thought he’d made an adequate enough impression to get Massa’s seat, and failing that, Kobayashi’s pace at Sauber, but with Ferrari’s love of status quo, dollar signs in Sauber’s eyes and a Caterham team convinced he would be elsewhere in 2013, he ended up without a drive. Let’s hope Caterham find the cash to field Heikki, the “pay-driver” labels over certain driver’s head is rather sickening, although with the expense of the 2014 power-trains, I won’t be betting my house on it.

      • JCost (@jcost) said on 27th September 2013, 8:22

        Yes, I doubt they’d much more from Rossi. Probably they can get more money but I’m not sure they’ll get more performance. But if it’s to replace Geido, I’d rather give Rossi a chance than give the drive to Heiki.

      • Kovalainen had his chance in a very decent Mclaren and was frankly nowhere. His time has been and gone. He looked good at Caterham but I honestly think he was flattered by the fact that Trulli was past it, as well as the documented problems Jarno had with the power steering wrack on the car. Oh and Heikki was never in the running for the Ferrari seat, Sauber possibly but once they’d committed to signing Hulkenberg the loss of Perez and the cash he brought meant they had to take Gutierrez.

      • I’m not saying I would like to see Rossi replace one of the current drivers, but he is probably an option as well as Kovalainen because of his GE backing and the fact Caterham have had him as test driver for the last 2 years.
        Regarding Kovalainen: I was a fan of his at McLaren, but I’m not fussed about his return to be honest. I agree with @matthijs that VDG could sneak a point just as much as Kovalainen could, and perhaps more so than Pic. Is Kovalainen that much quicker than VDG to warrant losing McGregor’s (and other’s) sponsorship money?

  2. f1freek (@f1freek) said on 27th September 2013, 0:17

    I really hope that Kovalainen gets at 2014 drive. He seems like a honest, true driver with a lot of skill.

  3. I think Caterham is fine with the drivers they have. Pic has been the one who is fighting Bianchi most of the time, and Van der Garde, for the amount of criticism he got in the first half of the season, has really come alive. He’s proven his worth and I think he should stay.

  4. PMccarthy_is_a_legend (@pmccarthy_is_a_legend) said on 27th September 2013, 0:47

    Heiki is a nice guy but he had his chance in a big team and couldn’t cut it. As a F1 fan I don’t really care for his return, I’d rather Caterham kept its current drivers who are doing a good job it must be said.

    • OmarR-Pepper (@omarr-pepper) said on 27th September 2013, 1:00

      @pmccarthy_is_a_legend well said. I’d rather see Kobayashi running around the circuits, he’s experienced too.

      • mitchibob (@mitchibob) said on 27th September 2013, 1:23

        Who doesn’t want to see Kamui back in F1?

        • I wouldnt say I dont want to kamui back but I would say I dont see why a team would pick him.

          shame for him honda havent picked a second team, because they would be a good way in.

          • danclapp (@danclapp) said on 27th September 2013, 8:44

            Can i just ask do you guys rate Perez? If you dont then you sure would not want Koba back afterall Perez dealt with him convincingly.

          • MazdaChris (@mazdachris) said on 27th September 2013, 9:17

            Well I always felt that based on their relative performances, Kobayashi was the more logical choice for a move to McLaren than Perez. Perez managed to get some headline grabbing finish positions, but they were all tyre assisted and on days where rivals fell down. Kobayashi’s best performances were hard won, and well deserved. I’m not saying Perez is a poor driver, but I don’t think he’s shown quite the same level of ability as Kobayashi. I think it had more to do with sponsorship.

          • Perez did not comfortably beat Kobayashi. Kobayashi beat him pretty strongly in 2011, and in 2012 Perez beat Kamui by 6 points or the equivalent of a 7th place finish. And Given Kobayashi got wiped out at Spa as well when he was right up the front of the grid Kobayashi has every right to feel pretty aggrieved that he is out of the sport and Perez got the plum drive at Mclaren.

          • BJ (@beejis60) said on 27th September 2013, 15:30

            I feel KOB was right on par with PER last season, especially with points and PER had at least one more podium than KOB meaning that KOB was far more consistent overall. It’s not justifiable that PER went to McLaren and KOB is completely out of F1.

  5. mitchibob (@mitchibob) said on 27th September 2013, 1:20

    I guess the difference between Rosberg and Hamilton isn’t that big… neither has managed to be world champion by winning the most races in a season.

    • Hamilfan (@hamilfan) said on 27th September 2013, 4:26

      @mitchibob Try winning a WDC with a williams or even a 2010 Mercedes. all the best ! As for Lewis he still won a WDC . Sure he could have won 2007 but then the team also made some errors , same in 2012 .

      • Optimaximal (@optimaximal) said on 27th September 2013, 9:52

        Actually, Hamilton lost his 2007 bid himself, in a Chinese gravel trap.

        Yes, it was a rookie mistake brought about by a poor strategy that left him with bad tyres, but, at the end of the day, he’d have won the championship were it not for that error.

        • He’d have also won the championship with that ‘rookie error’ if his gearbox didnt decide to fail for a very convieniant amount of seconds in Brazil.

          He’d have also won the championship with both of those ‘issues’ if the team didnt stop him winning in Monaco to appease Alonso. But, whatever. ‘Ifs’ eh..

          • “He’d have also won the championship with that ‘rookie error’ if his gearbox didnt decide to fail for a very convieniant amount of seconds in Brazil.”

            He pressed the pit limiter Button and didnt realise how to reset it.
            It was a rookie error end off.

    • Shrieker (@shrieker) said on 27th September 2013, 15:37

      Hamilton did win the most races to become champion.

      • David-A (@david-a) said on 27th September 2013, 18:23

        @shrieker
        Massa – 6
        Hamilton – 5

        • Thats the records show, but we all know Spa was never Massa’s. Lewis won it fair and square.

          Noone is talking about Singapore last week when Hamilton gave Massa his place back then immeditatly faught back on the following straight by staying close on his rear, but then again, hes not hot topic at the moment because hes not in the championship battle.

          • Shrieker (@shrieker) said on 27th September 2013, 20:56

            Exactly my point.

          • David-A (@david-a) said on 27th September 2013, 23:46

            @N @shrieker

            You can argue about Belgium all you want, but it still factually incorrect to state that Hamilton won the most races, which is the point.

          • Yeah, yeah, yeah. I know whats written on paper. I know the stewards on that day decided to give Hamilton a very convieniant time penalty that placed him very convieniantly behind Massa, who was nowhere on pace, hours after the race finished.

  6. Heikki’s good but I don’t see what he brings to the team given how Im not sure he’s any better than the 2 drivers Caterham currently have.

    Charles Pic is pretty highly rated, I recall Marussia been very keen to retain him because of how highly they thought of him & I’ve heard the same in other categories he’d run in.
    Van der garde has improved a lot through the year, He rarely seem to make mistakes, Showed good speed last weekend at Singapore & I think has done enough to retain the seat for 2014.

    Also for all the talk of how good Heikki is, He spent a lot of time behind Petrov last year & I don’t see anyone talking about Petrov been that good.

    • James (@speedking84) said on 27th September 2013, 19:19

      I agree, Heikki is good but I think Pic and van der Garde are a good combination, Pic is very consistent, easy on tyres and has won the young teams battle most this year if I’m correct, van der Garde is constantly improving and actually puts Pic under pressure, something Chilton can’t do with Bianchi.

  7. Jay Menon (@jaymenon10) said on 27th September 2013, 2:06

    Im glad that people finally recognize how good Nico Rosberg is.

    • Hamish said on 27th September 2013, 2:13

      The irony of such a comment coming from a person who is in the same team as Ross Brawn.

      Michael didn’t make it boring, Ross and Jean did.

  8. The same could be said of their helmets.

  9. There are a lot of people saying that Vettel’s wins are boring, even Toto Wolf seems to share the same opinion, but that is the nature of all sports, any athlete in the world wants to be the best they can be, take for example Usain Bolt, Michael Phelps, Sebatian Loeb, Barcelona, Spain National football team, Messi, Valentino Rossi, Roger Federer, the Portuguese national team beating England in the penaltys over and over again (sorry guys) are they all boring as well? Those people dominate or dominated their own sport and the fans where thrilled with their success, however the situation changes when Vettel gets on the equation, and for some reason I fail to understand why, why he and his team are the ones to blame for this boredom in F1? I know he has the better car, and that seems to help quite a lot, but in Singapore for example he was the only one pushing it, I actually enjoyed seeing the gap increasing lap by lap, the man was really giving it the beans, and Vettel gave us what we asked for the whole season, someone pushing the car to its limits, no tyre or fuel saving, he gave a master class behind that redbull while the others decided to look after the tyres (Nico Rosberg could have done the same thing, probably not to the same extent, but Mercedes were so convinced that Ferrari and Lotus would stop again that decided not to attack), so my question is, are RB and Vettel the only ones to “blame”?! Or all the others are playing the safe game and see how things turn out? And last but not least, can we enjoy someone’s dominance without feeling bored?

    Well this is my opinion on the subject, feel free to disagree…

    Cheers

    • Hamilfan (@hamilfan) said on 27th September 2013, 4:39

      @johnmilk I don’t mean to nitpick , but some of the sports there like tennis is individual there. That is all roger federer himself , whereas Red Bull plays a substantial role in the margin of victories for sebastian .

      But , as you said , Vettel gave a masterclass on sunday , and it has to be lauded. Period. As for enjoying the dominance , I think it depends on whom you support . the most generic supporters of F1 also prefer closer races and one edging out the other in the end .

      PS : Nico had that rubber problem in the wing so was not able to push 100 % . But yeah, even then RBR is too superior for Nico even to catch up to him . The only car capable in the race is the ferrari , If only ferrari could qualify better , Fernando’s blitz starts could be of better avail .

      • Ryan (@ryanisjones) said on 27th September 2013, 12:50

        Hamilton was on the back of Nico wanting to push, and Nico was on the radio arguing with his mechanics about wanting to drive to a delta (they were telling him to push).

        I believe that Mercedes would have preferred Hamilton to be the leading car at that point as he was not only happy but wanted to push. Since the place was for position, ordering Nico to let Hamilton through would not have gone down well even though Nico wanted to drive to a delta, but allowing them to race each other could have been even worse.

        The difference between Nico and Hamilton is not as slight as Brawn want’s to make out. Despite Nico having a better feel for the car this weekend, I believe had Hamilton been in a different team (able to race Nico) he would have finished in front of him.

        To me, that’s a big difference and that justifies Hamilton’s credentials – worse car, better performance.

      • the most generic supporters of F1 also prefer closer races and one edging out the other in the end .

        No. If we only watched F1 for “close races and one (driver) edging out the other at the end” then we’d not watch F1 at all, because it has never been like that at any time in its history.

        What we have in F1 at present are the equivalent of lots of new football fans who tune in to a football match and then complain that it does not finish 5-4 with the winning goal scored deep into second-half stoppage time. Such “fans” need to learn the skill on display even in nil-nil draws and in five-nil drubbings, because the sort of finish they want to see is always going to be an unusual exception to the rule.

        We need F1 fans who can appreciate something more than just wheel-to-wheel racing between the leaders at the end of a race, because that has always been and will always be vanishingly rare in F1.

    • I disagree. Joking. I agree. I hate hearing that Vettel is making things boring. For me the interest lies in how many records Vettel can break. That aside. It is really up to the other teams and drivers to do a better job. To have Vettel and RB slow down would be empty victories and kind of mock the sport. In my fantasies I would like to see Vettel win the championship then start every race after that from pit lane. See how many cars he could overtake with an aggressive setup. That’s what I would do if I was in his position.

    • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 27th September 2013, 4:48

      @johnmilk

      Those people dominate or dominated their own sport and the fans where thrilled with their success, however the situation changes when Vettel gets on the equation, and for some reason I fail to understand why, why he and his team are the ones to blame for this boredom in F1?

      Actually, I don’t think this is a phenomenon exclusive to Formula 1. I think it is predominant in all motorsports. When Michael Schumacher was dominating Formula 1, people got bored. When Sebastien Loeb (and now Sebastien Ogier) dominated rallying, people got bored. When Jamie Whincup started dominating V8 Supercars, people got bored.

      As I’ve said before, I think a large part of the hostility towards Vettel is not in the fact that he is dominating, but in the fact that he is the one doing it. I think there is a real perception out there that Vettel’s success has come at the expense of others. Whether or not that is true is beside the point – I think people struggle to respect Vettel’s results because they struggle to respect Vettel. And I think the people with that perception might have a point. After all, we once saw Helmut Marko tearing strips off Jaime Alguersuari for blocking Vettel during a free practice session, perhaps the one time during the weekend when blocking is inconsequential. When people see key members of the team, and, more importantly, key supporters of Vettel so brazenly mistreating the other drivers they are supposed to be looking out for, one cannot help but wonder if the perception that Vettel’s success has come at the expense of others is at least partially true. And if so, it’s really difficult to respect that.

      People get up in arms when fans boo Vettel on the podium, because those fans are not showing respect for his achievements. But I’ve always felt it’s difficult to respect the achivements when you struggle to respect the man underneath. And it’s not like this is an isolated incident, either – thousands of people are doing it, and they’re not just doing it because they have nothing better to do with their time. Vettel and Red Bull claim they will carry on regardless, but surely a better course of action would be to try and figure out why the people feel that way. They can dominate and avoid the angry masses.

      • Mike Dee (@mike-dee) said on 27th September 2013, 10:57

        Sebastien Loeb
        Sebastien Ogier
        Sebastian Vettel

        I see a pattern here!

      • You are correct, I don’t think it has anything to do with dominance, people just don’t seem to like Vettel generally. Sebastian Loeb never got anywhere near the same kind of stick Vettel is currently getting. Valentino Rossi dominated Moto GP for nearly a decade, but I don’t think there has ever been a more popular person than Rossi in motorsport history. Something about Vettel’s personality rubs people up the wrong way, same as Casey Stoner’s did in Moto GP.

      • @prisoner-monkeys I wonder too if, since SV didn’t seem to be getting booed last year or the year before, at least that I can recall, it’s also the fact that this is now 4 years straight for SV, and at a time when F1 has been throwing into the mix the ‘promise’ of degrady tires, and DRS shaking up the ‘natural’ order of things, and of course as we see that hasn’t happened. So I maintain that some of the booers or likely most, aren’t booing SV personally, but just booing someone who symbolizes a show that has not improved in spite of it’s efforts to do just that…at least to those who expected the shakeup.

        I also think that even if it is a respect thing and SV isn’t that well respected or liked, most of the booers, put in a situation of non-anonymity, put in a room alone with SV, would shake his hand, have a great chat with him, find out that he’s not a bad guy, and leave with an autograph and a story to tell the grandkids, and would regret booing him.

        • Eric (@) said on 27th September 2013, 20:46

          @robbie

          at a time when F1 has been throwing into the mix the ‘promise’ of degrady tires, and DRS shaking up the ‘natural’ order of things, and of course as we see that hasn’t happened.

          DRS and degrading tyres have been introduced to remove the shaking up of the natural order of things. We had Trulli trains, we had Alonso being unable to pass Petrov. If those things happened now Trulli would have been overtaken left right and center in the space of three corners and Alonso would have been a triple World Champion.

          I also think that even if it is a respect thing and SV isn’t that well respected or liked, most of the booers, put in a situation of non-anonymity, put in a room alone with SV, would shake his hand, have a great chat with him, find out that he’s not a bad guy, and leave with an autograph and a story to tell the grandkids, and would regret booing him.

          So true.

          But, I feel all this is being blown a little out of proportion. Apart from Italy (where every non Ferrari driver is booed) Vettel was only booed at Singapore by a handful of people, at Silverstone by Brits (no surprise there, surely) and in Canada by a somewhat large group of people.

          Last year I was at Silverstone and this year I visited Spa. When walking along those circuits I saw loads of Vettel fans. So, although it might seem that Vettel isn’t well liked or respected because he’s being booed right now it’s quite the opposite. And from reading comments here, on youtube and other F1 sites as well as F1Fanatics statistics on how many supporters each driver has shows Vettel is only getting more popularity and respect.

          • I agree entirely that it is being blown out of proportion, especially when you consider there’s really no way to police this, not that I think anyone should try. I’m convinced that some portion of the booers are booing the product of F1, no SV personally. And SV himself seems to be taking it all in good spirits. So if that’s the case then we needn’t worry. And that reminds me of what I heard Jeff Gordon in Nascar say years ago when he was winning everything. When asked about how he felt about being booed he said that (I paraphrase) they weren’t booing him, they were just booing the fact that their guy didn’t win. He added, thank goodness there are people that passionate about what we do. ie. I think virtually all professional athletes know that there are always going to be some in every crowd, and that it just comes with the territory. For every fan that boos them, they have far far more supporters.

      • When people see key members of the team, and, more importantly, key supporters of Vettel so brazenly mistreating the other drivers they are supposed to be looking out for, one cannot help but wonder if the perception that Vettel’s success has come at the expense of others is at least partially true. And if so, it’s really difficult to respect that.

        If there was an iota of truth to that then people would absolutely despise Fernando Alonso who really has mistreated his teammates all through his career, as opposed to the “favoritism” Vettel has supposedly received but which nobody can every quite put their finger on.

        The fact that people do not despise Alonso, that they instead admire him, blows a gaping hole in your theory.

    • Adam1 (@adam1) said on 27th September 2013, 7:19

      The big problem with the people booing is that they relate it back to the Ferrari-shumi dominance years, when it was all about the car and shumi and barachello would round round minutes ahead of the field. The difference here-mark webber is not running around with vettel he’s chasing behind in the pack and if the car was that superior he wouldn’t have a problem… Vettel is a highly talented driver, able to extract the most from the best package on the grid. That’s why it is exciting to see him winning Grand Prix!
      Although Yappy’s idea sounds great, I’d love to see him continue his run of wins and break that 9 consecutive races streak. It’s stood for too long and even shumi couldn’t break it.

    • Matthijs (@matthijs) said on 27th September 2013, 7:29

      Totally agree. Don’t blame the guys that are dominating, blame the others who are lagging behind.

    • Red Andy (@red-andy) said on 27th September 2013, 7:54

      Perhaps it’s unfair of me, but when I watch Vettel dominating a race, I just don’t get the feeling that we’re watching one of F1′s all-time greats. His fourth title will put him into a very exclusive club, to be sure, but there is something I can’t quite put my finger on that says to me that this isn’t one of the best drivers we’ve ever seen.

      I remember having the same feeling about Hakkinen in the late 90s – he was a fantastic driver, but was he really in the same league as Schumacher? Or was it just the car?

      Seb has a long career ahead of him, if he wants one, so maybe there’s time for my mind to be changed. But at the moment I just don’t have “that feeling” about him, which is why I struggle to get excited when he dominates.

      • arki19 said on 27th September 2013, 8:45

        I totally agree with what you have said. The idea that Vettel rates anywhere near some other multiple world champions of the past is ridiculous to me. But then maybe I’m just old, bitter and cynical.

        • Patrick (@paeschli) said on 27th September 2013, 13:33

          When Vettel won the last race in 2010, I thought he was a great champion. He was young, got a lot of pressure on his shoulders and just did the job where the much more experienced Mark finished 6th or something like that and Alonso failed to pass Petrov. On that day, he was better than Alonso (who is perceived as the best driver on the grid today …)

          • Shreyas Mohanty (@) said on 28th September 2013, 6:05

            @paeschli Okay, but I still didn’t get your point?

          • Patrick (@paeschli) said on 28th September 2013, 7:57

            @shreyasf1fan That a driver who drives perfectly when the pressure is the greatest more deserves to be world champion than someone who can’t overtake a slower car during 30 laps …

          • Shreyas Mohanty (@) said on 28th September 2013, 11:12

            @paeschli
            Okay, so basically Alonso gets sloppy one day and he suddenly doesn’t deserve his championships? Tell me more about how Vettel will win championships in a car that doesn’t lap 1-2s faster than its rivals – say Ferrari or Mercedes?

          • Patrick (@paeschli) said on 28th September 2013, 15:09

            @shreyasf1fan You mention his latest performance: I want to point out that he was 2 s faster than his team mate in the same car … Sounds like a good driver to me ;)

      • MazdaChris (@mazdachris) said on 27th September 2013, 9:28

        This is really backwards logic. You look at the performance of Schumacher during his dominant period and it was mostly the car. We know this – Ferrari basically had agreements with the FIA which gave them an advantage over the rest of the field. Not only did Schumache win all the time, but you can tell how good the car was by looking at how Rubens always came second. No other car could get close, regardless.

        Whereas with Vettel, the car is demonstrably not the biggest factor, because Webber usually struggles with it. Webber is well regarded as a great driver, but he makes that RBR car look ordinary. It’s only in Vettel’s hands that the RBR looks like a dominant car. So by comparing Vettel’s performance with Schumacher’s, there’s more evidence that Vettel is actually the superior driver.

        • Shreyas Mohanty (@) said on 27th September 2013, 10:33

          @mazdachris Webber never struggles, per se. RBR’s main, foremost strength is aero. And everyone who has atleast watched a couple of races knows aero parts need clean air to give optimal performance.
          So Webber’s problems are that Sebastian Vettel is blistering over one lap, and that he starts very poorly. So the guy drops from his P3-P4 to P6-P8 and then has the job of recovery, forget challenging Vettel. And that too with a slightly handicapped car (dirty air).

          PS : I am not saying Vettel doesn’t deserve credit. He is an excellent driver with obvious talent. But to say he has won his 4 championships (come on, who are we kidding, he will win this year) purely by talent is wrong. But saying 30s in 12 laps comes down to only the driver is wrong, especially when there are drivers like Fernando Alonso and Lewis Hamilton on the grid.

          • Shreyas Mohanty (@) said on 27th September 2013, 10:39

            *and saying 30s

          • So a circular argument. If Alonso and Hamilton had the best car they would be winning, but that’s not because of the car. Repeat. Vettel pulled out the gaps he needed and then some. How is saying Vettel did it using his ability wrong? All his competitors were still racing. So where is the confusion?

          • @shreyasf1fan
            I agree that Vettel didn’t win 3 WDC and 33 races only on his pure talent. Because in F1 it doesn’t work like this, you can go as fast as your car can.

            In my opinion the difference between a champion and a good driver is how consistently you can push your car to the limit, how consistently you can put your car in the best possible position. Vettel is one of the best in doing this.

            There are many people who say that Vettel wins “because of the car” and they try to diminish Vettel’s achievements with this argument. I really don’t understand, of course it’s because of the car. If he was driving a Williams instead of a Red Bull, he wouldn’t have been so succesful. But when I see Vettel driving his car, I don’t think that there are many drivers who could do better than him.

          • Shreyas Mohanty (@) said on 27th September 2013, 12:11

            @yobo01 I knew this was going to become about Vettel. I am NOT trying to diminish his talent – he drives for a top Formula 1 team, that is enough qualification to be one of the best drivers. But what I am saying is, he at times gets it too easy, come on. Nobody gets to challenge him with the machinery they have, irrespective of talent. That’s what I am saying.

          • @shreyasf1fan Yeah, I wasn’t talking about you when I said that people are trying to diminish Vettel, I was mentioning a common thing people say when they talk about him.

            He gets it too easy? Well, sometimes yes. But I think that’s the way it’s always been. There’s nothing wrong with it. It happens all the time in motorsport.

        • @mazdachris

          Ferrari basically had agreements with the FIA which gave them an advantage over the rest of the field

          OMG F1 fans at their worst. I understand that you may not like Ferrari to win or you hate them but being so biased with nonsense it doesn’t make sense !
          So basically for you when Ferrari dominante is because they have done some corruption, when others dominate, is because they have done the best job. Nice from you, amway is called bad loser.

          We know this

          We know what ?

          Here’s my hint (if i was you) :

          Ferrari Red Bull basically had agreements with the FIA which gave them an advantage over the rest of the field.

          now deal with it.

          Whereas with Vettel, the car is demonstrably not the biggest factor, because Webber usually struggles with it

          Webber this year since Malaysia is not a benchmark anymore for Vettel ….a 37 years old guy, in bad relationship with his team, having all mechanical problems, waiting his retirement from F1… In 2009-2012 he was much closer to Vettel, than Massa was to Alonso.

          • MazdaChris (@mazdachris) said on 28th September 2013, 21:53

            Ok whatever you say. For the record I love Ferrari and am a massive Michael Schumacher fan. But to try and deny that the FIA were happily turning a blind eye to Ferrari flouting the rules, while at the same time enjoying a commercial agreement which ensured they received (and still do to this day) an enormous bonus beyond anything their competitors receive is frankly naive. These are not things that are matters of opinion, they’re established facts. Ferrari had a cushy situation which meant they were able to do things other teams wouldn’t get away with. While other teams had enormous draconian penalties against them for minor infractions.

            As I say, I love Ferrari, love the history they bring to the sport. But they’ve enjoyed a privileged position which they’ve exploited to the fullest potential.

            The situation with RBR is absolutely different.

        • Red Andy (@red-andy) said on 27th September 2013, 11:24

          But Schumacher had already proven what he was capable of in the Benettons and Ferraris of the 90s, when he didn’t have a clear car advantage. Back when I was making my judgements about him and Hakkinen, his most dominant years were yet to come.

          • Patrick (@paeschli) said on 27th September 2013, 13:36

            Schumacher won all of his 7 championships in the best car of the grid …

            The question is: who didn’t? I think Kimi Raikonnen is the only driver I know of who managed to become world champion in a car who wasn’t the best.

          • @paeschli

            Kimi benefitted from the debacle known as McLaren 07.

          • Mclaren and the Ferrari were even in 07. They were very close on pace. Alain Prost in 1986 is the best example, that Mclaren was not as good as the Williams but the infighting between Mansell and Piquet, and of course the famous tyre blowout for Mansell at Adelaide let him sneak in. Keke Rosberg in 82 as well, everyone knows the tragedies that befell Villeneuve and Pironi that year. I also think the 1995 Williams was better than Schumacher’s Benetton but Hill’s indifferent performance (he made lots of errors that year), Schumacher’s undoubted brilliance and the much better strategy and pit team of Benetton gave Michael the edge that year.

          • David-A (@david-a) said on 27th September 2013, 18:37

            Vettel didn’t get a car advantage until 2010. He was already a race winner in 2008 and 2009 (including becoming the youngest championship runner-up, at 22 years old).

        • @mazdachris I basically agree, from a different angle, with what you are saying. I think that RB did as well as he did relative to MS because of, and you hint at it, the massive effort put behind Ferrari by the FIA itself. Unlimited testing, etc etc.

          I credit SV for dominating without all the massive effort that MS had the luxury of, and I think MW lags behind SV more than RB lagged behind MS, because relatively speaking MW hasn’t had nearly the tesing time, nor SV of course, that would give him (MW) the opportunity to get closer to SV. The car simply seems to suit SV better and MW is much more handcuffed to do anything about it, whereas RB was of course handcuffed by a contract but otherwise was able to spend far more time in his (read MS’s) car than MW has been able to spend in the RBR. And even if one were to suspect that RBR builds their cars for SV’s style of driving, which is very possible, SV is still enjoying far less luxury of effort and resources than MS had, and it shows with MW’s lesser performance.

          • MazdaChris (@mazdachris) said on 27th September 2013, 18:02

            I think you’re overstating the influence the driver himself has on car design. Maybe the ergonomics of the car in terms of the size and shape of the cockpit are going to be designed more around the requirements of the lead driver, but the ‘make car go quick’ stuff is going to be universal. The design team will design the car, and to a small extent the driver will have some influence on that through the refinement stage, though without large scale track testing it’s more a case of ‘here’s the car, now go drive it’. Adrian Newey wouldn’t allow a fast design to be compromised because the drivers don’t like how it drives, and nor should he. A properly top line driver will be able to get into anything and adapt his style to extract the maximum from it. Vettel can do this, and it looks like Webber can’t. Or at least is less able to deal with a car he’s not entirely comfortable with.

          • Ok but I think in terms of, for example, MS struggling to adapt to the Merc whose front end wasn’t really glued to the track (his preference) in any of the 3 seasons he spent there, and he struggled the whole time. But build the car such that within it’s capabilities is the ability to tweek it to get the car more oversteery, and then he can adapt. If the car was built such that it was incapable of being tweeked to a driver’s preference, he may never feel comfortable nor confident in the car no matter what they try, because the parameters were just not in the car to begin with for that specific driver. By all accounts MW was never nearly that comfortable with the feel provided by the EBD once they got off the throttle, as SV was. But they couldn’t tweek the car enough to get it to MW’s liking. Sure I agree that it is up to the top drivers to adapt, but I think we have all heard it said often enough that drivers are coloured by their car. Even the best are often handcuffed to do anything significant with the car. Even if MS started to match NR and some days outperform him, it’s not like he was adapting so well that he was winning races with the Merc. He was still ultimately struggling and limited by the car.

            So setting aside things like size and shape of cockpit, I think that if a team wants to, it will consider what a specific driver likes or dislikes (eg historically prefers oversteer and absolutely hates understeer, is a late braker or early one, etc etc,) and then they consider those things in the design to ensure that it is inherently oversteery, or finds it’s balance at a certain point etc etc, and then go from there, as opposed to another driver who absolutely can’t stand oversteer, so you want to build into the car understeery characteristics and then tweek it from there, which might take it somewhat out of the hands of the ‘secondary’ driver, which may or may not be an issue depending on if the team is a one-rooster or a two-rooster one.

          • MazdaChris (@mazdachris) said on 27th September 2013, 21:23

            Don’t forget though that the scope for being able to make big setup changes has reduced massively. Weight distribution is all but fixed, and the tyre sizes have changed such that front tyres are now a lot narrower than they were before. The tendency is going to end up that with fixed weight distribution, suspension systems designed around packaging as the primary focus, and standard tyres which are identical on all cars, the balance of the car is going to be pretty similar across the board. Especially now that Pirelli have now prevented teams running more extreme geometry and tyre pressures. So really the biggest differential is going to be aero balance, but again that’s going to be mandated by the design team who are simply looking to create the biggest downforce loadings possible beyond pretty much any other considerations.

            What I’m getting at is that the driver’s own requirements are now taken into account far less than ever before. It really is just a case of, here’s your car let’s see what you can do with it. Limited suspension setup is as much as the driver will be able to play with to make a difference to the balance of the car.

      • when I watch Vettel dominating a race, I just don’t get the feeling that we’re watching one of F1′s all-time greats.

        I’ve noticed that the driver qualities which actually are very important in F1 are not the ones which many fans admire, and that the qualities many fans admire are not the ones which are very important in F1.

        In order of importance in F1, desirable driver attributes are 1) the ability to do a fast lap, 2) the ability to repeat that fast lap fifty or so times over the course of a GP, 3) the ability to learn different circuits and to go fast on all of them, 4) mental/emotional toughness and the ability to withstand pressure and adversity, 5) tyre management skills, 6) ability to develop a car and a good work ethic. In all of these areas Vettel is superlatively good.

        The skill many fans prize above all others is one which is actually relatively unimportant in F1 – it’s the one described as “racecraft” or “moving up through the field” or “overtaking”. Like many great drivers of the past – Fangio, Clark, Senna – Vettel rarely has to show this side of his skill set, because (like those other greats) he’s usually in front. Which is not to say he’s weak in this area, he has had several fine come-from-behind drives in his career. Some of them occurred before joining Red Bull.

        I rank Vettel with Fangio, Clark and Senna both in “greatness” and in the manner that greatness expresses itself. If Senna were alive today and putting his car on the front row and winning from there on a regular basis (which is what he did throughout his career) the same people slating Vettel would be slating him. And they’d still be wrong.

    • Jono (@me262) said on 27th September 2013, 8:13

      @johnmilk There’s lots of possibilities as to why people boo…
      – Maybe they’re tired of spending huge amounts of money to watch a foregone conclusion?
      - Maybe they’re sick of seeing the best drivers having no chance of winning?
      - Maybe they’re sick of seeing a guy pretending and performing like he’s done something special when in reality almost anyone on the grid could win with that car and team behind him?
      - Maybe they’re sick of hearing from the same grinning face about how tough it was and how he really had to work hard to get pole, when he was actually sitting in the pits, watching?
      – Maybe they’re sad that such a person could, at his age, have a record that matches some of the true greats of F1?
      – Maybe they’re sick of seeing the favouritism at Red Bull, especially when the driver being persecuted is such a popular and respected driver?
      – Maybe they’re sick of the charade that one driver can, at will, make an entire pit stop gap in 12 laps – maybe they know that something’s rotten in that picture?

    • TMF (@tmf42) said on 27th September 2013, 8:30

      RB and Vettel are victims of their own success. People think it was handed to him and it was made too easy for him and it was anyway just Newey who makes it possible for RBR.

      But they forget from where they came from. RB took over Jaguar (former Steward) and transformed a mediocre team into the best of the grid. Newey is one piece in a much larger puzzle that Horner has been working on ever since.
      Most obvious reason, why I think every single win is well earned – they top the table of pit-stop times at most races. It shows that they aren’t just a bunch of newbies with a fast car – they are a well oiled machine thriving towards perfection in every area. Also they beat the other teams in the development race and that can’t be down to 1 man – everything has to fit together.

      Vettel was helped a lot in the junior program, but it wasn’t like that they went out and picked a guy from the street. He had talent they saw it and they nurtured it. He also had to go thru the same stages like any other junior driver and always delivered. At BMW and at Torro Rosso – he finally got the seat at RBR, a race winning car and then he continued working hard and improved a lot. He is no longer the error prone kid from 09 and still he is just 26. Give it a few more years and people will finally realize that all he achieved so far wasn’t just out of luck.

    • Optimaximal (@optimaximal) said on 27th September 2013, 9:56

      Toto didn’t offer an opinion, he simply stated the fact that it is ‘what people say’.

      At the end of the day, it shouldn’t be about waiting for Red Bull or Sebastian to trip over or break down, their rivals just have to do better jobs.

    • in Singapore for example he was the only one pushing it, I actually enjoyed seeing the gap increasing lap by lap, the man was really giving it the beans, and Vettel gave us what we asked for the whole season, someone pushing the car to its limits, no tyre or fuel saving

      I agree – I found it to be a much more entertaining race than Italy or Belgium in that respect, seeing him light up the fastest lap tables (frequently by well over a second). I found it much more entertaining than for example Alonso tyre saving, even though both in a sense are equally impressive.

      In the end though, Toto has a point, but it’s their job to solve the problem by being better! No point complaining about it in my opinion, and it’s not like they have a massive resource advantage over Mercedes and Ferrari, so there’s really no excuses.

  10. Kingshark (@kingshark) said on 27th September 2013, 4:07

    The average finishing gap between Rosberg and Hamilton, when both drivers finished the race, is 1 second.

    Tiny indeed.

  11. The difference between Lewis and Rosberg is that Lewis wouldn’t need to be told twice to push.

    • David Margono (@woshidavid95) said on 27th September 2013, 6:27

      @uan
      Except that ‘pushing’ is a double-edged sword, at times they serve Hamilton pretty well but at others they backfire, with the epitome of it being his numerous on-track entanglements with Massa in 2011 where most, if not all of them were entirely his fault.

      • @woshidavid95

        agreed, however Rosberg was asked by his team to push when normally teams are asking drivers to hit a specific lap delta. In the same race, right after the SC, Vettel was told to push hard and he did. After the race Rocky complimented him on being patient when needed but also quick when they wanted it.

        I recall in a couple of races Lewis being asked to go faster (Spain comes to mind) and he responded that he would if could “I can’t go any faster”. In this way, Rosberg’s a bit more like Button – let’s the race come to him, which is great when it does, but unfortunately races usually don’t.

        • V. Chris (@vasschu) said on 27th September 2013, 7:43

          @uan

          Actually in Spain the team told Lewis to drive slower and save the tyres and he responded ” I can’t drive any slower”.

          • @vasschu you’re correct, I miss remembered. But I do recall another race (forget this year or last) where Hamilton was asked to push, and he said “I’m going as fast as I can” then in the same race, he was asked to go slower (ala Spain) and he said the same thing “I’m going as slow as I can”.

          • panache (@panache) said on 29th September 2013, 6:09

            Actually you are both correct. Hamilton made both comments in the same race.

        • petebaldwin (@petebaldwin) said on 27th September 2013, 9:53

          @woshidavid95 – yeah I think that’s fairly accurate. Rosberg is better than Hamilton at protecting tyres and driving to delta times but I think Hamilton is faster given the option to push the car as far as it will go.

    • Merv (@) said on 27th September 2013, 7:51

      and if he ran out of tyres after doing the pushing he’d instantly blame the team.

  12. Teto wolff said on 27th September 2013, 6:10

    The biggest difference between nico and Hamilton is that nico has had three dnf’s by not fault of his own while Hamilton has had none,0. That nico has won one race more than Hamilton and that nico has been told at least twice not to pass Hamilton or to move over to let Hamilton pass. So based on this facts nico is quite better than Hamilton. And that Hamiltonian has benefitted more of team orders and better reliability than nico. And for all the people saying that massa is given and treated as a 2nd driver in Ferrari, let me ask you how many times massa has suffered of mechanical dnf’s in the last three years? The Ferrari team seems to put as much time and the same equipment and reliability in both of their cars compared to red bull(mark webber) and nico rosberg in Mercedes. It is the mediocre massa who hasn’t taken advantage of having a reliable car.

  13. WilliamB (@william-brierty) said on 27th September 2013, 8:11

    Differences between Hamilton and Rosberg “tiny”…but that “tiny” difference is in Hamilton’s favour. Is that what you were trying to say Ross? And what point are you trying to make Ross? Newsflash – there’s not much between the very top drivers in F1 (I think Rosberg can definitely be labelled a “top driver” now, and I definitely think he’s taken Button’s spot as the 5th best guy out there). I couldn’t have guessed that…

  14. Tomsk (@tomsk) said on 27th September 2013, 8:30

    Fabulous photos by Jamey Price – he really brings out the way the cars look under lights.

  15. danclapp (@danclapp) said on 27th September 2013, 8:40

    Oh come on Ross, how isit close since Monaco it as been mainly Hamilton. Rosberg has turned the tide since Monza but Ham made a mistake in Monza Qualifying, Rosberg could not even beat Hulkenberg im sure Ham was the quicker of 2 guys in that race. And then in Singapore Rosberg defo was the better. But remember at the start after Hamiltons first pole, Ros got 3 on the trot people thought is Ros actually better than Hamilton? I certainly was worried being a Ham fan but since Monaco as i say its been Hamilton as the No 1 driver in all honesty. It is also qually in Hams favour points in Ham favour, and lets not kid ourselves race wins should be in his favour. If these guys were in same team for yrs then yes you could say Rosberg doing really well, but this wont look great on Ros getting beat first season will it. After beating Schumi(although he was not the best schumi).

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