Vettel can match Ascari’s nine-in-a-row – Hamilton

F1 Fanatic Round-up

Alberto Ascari, Ferrari 500, Nurburgring Nordschleife, 1952In the round-up: Lewis Hamilton, the last driver other than Vettel to win a race in Hungary 12 weeks ago, believes his rival can match Alberto Ascari’s record of winning in nine consecutive race starts.


Your daily digest of F1 news, views, features and more.

Vettel?s in line to make it nine, says Hamilton (Metro)

“If he doesn?t have any reliability issues, most likely. He?s just walking it.”

Christian Horner: “The way he?s driving at the moment is quite supreme…” (Adam Cooper’s F1 Blog)

Mark [Webber] got pretty close today, so it will be great to see Mark win a race before the end of the year as well.”

Revised tyres hampering Raikkonen (Autosport)

Lotus trackside operations director Alan Permane: “He doesn’t like the front end. He doesn’t like the turn in. It is not sharp enough for him. But, if you try to sharpen it up too much, you then lose the rear.”

Sebastian Vettel has faced criticism that is both personal and unfair (The Guardian)

“While it is understandable that many may lament the season as boring, it is less fair to direct that ire at the man whose task is to win the championship and because he will have done exactly that four times on the trot. Beyond a shadow of doubt any other driver would not consider for a moment that their role was to entertain or extend the season to its finale with a title at stake. Nor can one imagine the same expectation or the same opprobrium being directed at a British driver in similar circumstances.”


Comment of the day

Some more Japanese Grand Prix statistics from @Andae23:

Sebastian Vettel has won five of six races in Asia this season so far. The last time he won fewer than three race in Asia was in 2008, when he scored his first win.

Esteban Gutierrez became the first rookie to score points this season ?ǣ we had to wait until the fifteenth round for it. The last time the wait for rookies to score was that long was in 1998, when Esteban Tuero and Tora Takagi failed to score a single point that year.

Valtteri Bottas still hasn?t scored a point. The last driver who started more than two races for Williams and didn?t score a single point that year was Alessandro Zanardi in 1999. Sadly the last driver to do so before Zanardi was Ayrton Senna in 1994.

For the first time this season, neither Mercedes managed to finish in the top seven.

Max Chilton has still finished every race he started. This levels him with Lewis Hamilton, who also managed to finish his first fifteen Grands Prix. He is one race finish away from Tiago Monteiro?s record.

After Paul di Resta finished his streak of six consecutive points finishes, he hasn?t scored a point in the last seven races.

From the forum

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to Fer No. 65 and Sebastiaan Huizinga!

If you want a birthday shout-out tell us when yours is by emailling me, using Twitter or adding to the list here.

On this day in F1

Nelson Piquet won his second world championship 30 years ago today in the South African Grand Prix at Kyalami.

Three drivers went into the final race with a shot at the title: Piquet was two points behind Alain Prost while Rene Arnoux also had an outside chance.

Arnoux’s slim chances were ended by engine failure after nine laps. Just before half-distance Prost was out too. So Piquet handed the lead to team mate Riccardo Patrese and stroked the car home in the third place he needed to reclaim the title.

Piquet was reunited with his title-winning car at the Goodwood Festival of Speed earlier this year:

Here’s the start of the race:

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134 comments on Vettel can match Ascari’s nine-in-a-row – Hamilton

  1. HoHum (@hohum) said on 15th October 2013, 0:07

    There goes Hamilton again implying Vettel can only win races if his car is reliable! when is he going to admit that vettel can win races without a car.?

  2. Rybo (@rybo) said on 15th October 2013, 0:09

    Just had an AHA! moment, it was the second I realized how well thought out and planned F1Fanatic is. Keep up the fantastic job Keith. The highlight of my day is 6:01 CST when the round-up posts. Endless thanks!

  3. Calum (@calum) said on 15th October 2013, 0:14

    It’s well placed for 9 wins in a row to be honest, the RedBull is the best car, Vettel is hooked right up with it and with the regulations as different as they are next year, every team will be focused on those instead of bringing massive updates to a non-existent 2013 championship battle.

    Vettel has also done the damage at each of the up and coming races: at least it adds something of interest to him marching on and picking up victories regardless. If the races are as good as Suzuka then I won’t mind him seeing out 9 consecutive race victories, it would be an awesome acheivement.

    India: 2011/12 poles, 2011/12 wins
    Abu Dhabi:2010/11 poles, 2009/10 wins
    COTA: 2012 pole
    Brazil: 2010 pole, 2010 win

    • @calum
      Correction Brazil : 2011 Pole , 2010 Win

    • Krichelle (@krichelle) said on 15th October 2013, 17:04


      In India, I am really pessimistic for everyone… If nothing “bad” happens, Red Bull could even get another 1-2 finish there based on their form on the last 2 gp’s of INDIA, and their current form.
      However, in ABU DHABI, I expect Hamilton to be very very strong here. Here’s why:

      2009-Lewis took pole, and could have had 2nd place had his gearbox not broke, or he was forced to retire.
      2010- Lewis and Vettel battled it out for qualifying, with the latter prevailing by less than a tenth. In the race, Lewis set the fastest lap.
      2011- Surprisingly, Vettel took pole on a weekend where Lewis was very strong. In fact, Lewis’ Q2 lap was enough for pole position. Although, in q3, the track conditions changed. Lewis won the race after Vettel retired on lap 1-2.
      2012- Lewis dominated the weekend until his fuel pressure broke, and could have won that race. (Hands down, at the start he just blasted everyone, and after the safety car period no one was able to match him)

      • Krichelle (@krichelle) said on 15th October 2013, 17:10

        Forgot, that in 2011, if Vettel hadn’t retired, he could have won. haha

      • Calum (@calum) said on 15th October 2013, 17:58


        I also think if RedBull are going to get beaten in the next 4 races it will be at Abu Dhabi. Lotus have had a resurgence in the last couple of races so they could also challenge for victory, and like you say Hamilton is very quick around Yas Marina circuit.

        My fingers are crossed for Webber to pick up a victory somewhere before the end of his career too though – a 10th total win and win in a 5th consecutive season would be a sweet swansong!

  4. Fer no.65 (@fer-no65) said on 15th October 2013, 0:15

    Thanks for the birthday call, even if it’s not really 15th October here yet :P ! Another year as a F1Fanatic. Wonder how long it’s been since I got here…

  5. OmarR-Pepper (@omarr-pepper) said on 15th October 2013, 0:16

    Happy birthday @fer-no65!!! Greetings from Peru to my Argentinian friend

  6. I’m a bit more skeptical than Hamilton: I don’t know whether Red Bull will be as dominant in Abu Dhabi, but then again they were very strong in Singapore – a traction circuit. Austin’s a bit of an unknown, too and their gearboxes have been having quite a few gremlins.

    • AdrianMorse (@adrianmorse) said on 15th October 2013, 5:57

      @vettel1, I think this is just a case of non-Vettel fans resigning themselves to the fact the Sebastian might well (and is likely) to win all the remaining races, while his fans might not want to sell the skin before the bear is shot, or however the saying goes.

      I thought that Toto Wolff was a bit pessimistic when he said, a few races ago, that Vettel might win all remaining races, but his prediction is looking more realistic now. Mercedes have fallen far enough off the pace not to be a real threat anymore, Ferrari have not been a race-win contender since Barcelona, Lotus not since Australia (ok, Lotus were not too far away the last two races, but even with the best-case scenario of leading after turn 1 on a circuit where it is difficult to overtake, Grosjean finished 3rd behind the Bulls).

      In motor racing, anything is possible, of course, and if you would look closely at the season of all but two drivers on the grid (Alonso and Vettel), you would find many occasions where small errors, reliability problems, strategy/pit stop errors and plain bad luck prevented a driver from getting the maximum result at the end of the weekend. It can’t be a coincide that the Vettel/Red Bull combination keep getting things perfect every weekend, and credit to them, but I am not hopeful we’ll see a different weekend this year.

      • David BR2 said on 15th October 2013, 16:24

        Brawn did say Mercedes would evaluate how much they’d put into the rest of the season based on the Spa and Monza results. It would have needed huge effort and commitment from Mercedes (or the others) to get near to Red Bull, when there’s zero chance of catching Vettel, why bother? To save Formula 1 from mind-numbing tedium? Not their responsibility. They have to work on next year. End result: Red Bull walk the rest with a little extra effort. Or rather Vettel given Webber’s challenge has been non-existent for years now.

        Formula 1 is becoming unwatchably dull.

    • Maksutov (@maksutov) said on 15th October 2013, 15:07

      I think Hamilton is sometimes mentally preparing himself for the possibility. But at the same, i read Hamiltons comments as a criticism to other teams saying: “comon guys, we can’t let him walk all over these wins”. And I agree with him.

      Don’t get me wrong, I do think Vettel is a top driver, but I can not conclude that he is the best until he finally moves to another team and wins with them (regardless of how many WDCs he wins with RBR). Same applies to any other driver. So far, Alonso and Hamilton have both moved teams and have shown what they can do. They have both been unlucky in their current teams, but I would like to see Vettel do the same.

      • uan (@uan) said on 15th October 2013, 15:50

        so Hamilton was unproved until just year? It’s funny, Hamilton hadn’t won a WDC in 4 years at McLaren (and arguably Macca threw away his chances last year), yet no one called on Lewis to move to prove himself, and in fact, many thought he was making a mistake.

        Vettel, 2 years younger than Hamilton, is given a race and championship winning car, and people say he needs to move to prove himself?

        I don’t get it…

      • Loup Garou (@loup-garou) said on 16th October 2013, 7:56

        I agree about Alonso but what has Hamilton achieved after moving to Mercedes? He has won one race and although he is ahead of his teammate, Rosberg would have been a lot closer but for those 2 DNFs at the start of the season.

        On the other hand Vettel won with a Toro Rosso, who have achieved very little since he left. When Vettel moves to another team, what people will first realise is how good Mark Webber really was.

        Both are good drivers but Hamilton is significantly more overrated than Vettel.

        • Michael (@freelittlebirds) said on 17th October 2013, 3:53

          @Loup Garou – no, Lewis hasn’t accomplished much…

          All of a sudden Merc is almost #2 in the WCC standings and Lewis has had countless starts in the front row and pole next to Vettel’s, as I’m sure you are about to point out, uber-slow and uber-unreliable RB9…

          And Lewis been paired with such horrible F1 drivers like Alonso, Button and Rosberg. Where do they find these amateurs teammates? Couldn’t he get Gutierrez to really prove himself?

          And he’s so lucky in the races – he spins and then wins the next race or he has a pit stop disaster while leading and wins next year:-)

          Poor, poor Vettel – makes 2 mistakes in 1 race, survives by sheer luck and then wins the WDC with half the side of the car missing… Such horrible luck…

          • David-A (@david-a) said on 17th October 2013, 4:17

            @freelittlebirds – That Bruno Senna would attempt to go from 10th to 7th and hit Vettel without even being alongside actually was very bad luck for Vettel. As was his radio malfunctioning in that race. But yeah, under pressure he still raced from the back to clinch the title.

          • Michael (@freelittlebirds) said on 17th October 2013, 15:27

            Surely you are jesting sir – the track is not Vettel’s and he closed in on Senna like a complete amateur fighting in a videogame, not the championship.

            Vettel simply gets all discombobulated when there’s anyone else around him:-) Narain Karthikeyan 2012, another car in Austin 2012, Senna 2012, Suzuka 2013.

            He has gotten so used to driving all by himself that he can’t believe his eyes when he sees another car on the track. Wth, I’m actually racing here? Horner, do something!!!

          • Dave (@raceprouk) said on 17th October 2013, 15:59


            Suzuka 2013

            Obviously forgetting the well-planned and well-executed overtake on Grosjean.

          • Michael (@freelittlebirds) said on 17th October 2013, 16:14

            No doubt Vettel dispatched Grosjean quickly but if his car was slower he would have been stuck behind him for a looooong, looooooooooooooooong time – it’s not like he planned it with a slower car. Just ask Lewis about Korea 2013.

            I don’t know why Webber’s car was so slow in the DRS zone but there are some folks who claim that the 2 cars are identical.

          • Dave (@raceprouk) said on 17th October 2013, 16:18

            @freelittlebirds – The parts are identical (within manufacturing tolerances), the set-ups weren’t. That may have some influence, but at the end of the day, Vettel just did a much better job of overtaking than Webber did.

        • Deej92 (@deej92) said on 17th October 2013, 16:29

          You mention Rosberg’s DNFs but fail to acknowledge Hamilton’s last weekend and the puncture at Silverstone which robbed him of a better finish. Hamilton is showing well against another very good team-mate.
          You agree about Alonso, but what has he achieved since moving to Ferrari? The same number of titles Hamilton has at Mercedes. 0 titles in 4 seasons wasn’t the target. Now they are bringing Raikkonen in to push Alonso more.
          Hamilton won a drivers’ title with McLaren, who have achieved little since he left, whilst Mercedes have improved massively. I think you are discrediting Hamilton too much here.

        • Michael (@freelittlebirds) said on 17th October 2013, 16:39

          @raceprouk I agree with that but I don’t think Grosjean put up a big defense against Vettel as he did with Webber. Perhaps he knew that the pass was inevitable with Vettel but keeping Webber at bay was a possibility especially since Webber couldn’t stay on the Lotus’ tail. Were there any radio transmissions to Grosjean from his team to guide him?

  7. Tyler (@tdog) said on 15th October 2013, 0:32

    @keithcollantine enjoy Austin, a few suggestions:-

    The Salt Lick – for proper Texas BBQ. Located in Driftwood about 25 minutes out of Austin, it’s worth the drive.

    Soco (South of Congress) – no doubt everyone will tell you to head here. Check out Uncommon Objects, a store full of some of the weirdest things you will ever see. For a pair of proper cowboy boots, Allens Boots. The Food Truck park is great, I recommend the cup cake place and the Mighty Cone (deep fired avocado is better than you think)!

    For good mexican, there’s lots of good choices but try Papalote Taco House if you can get to it.

    And for bars, Lustre Pearl is great. If you want to see a gig (alt/rock/pop, not country) see what’s on at Stubbs.

    Hope this helps!

  8. Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 15th October 2013, 0:38

    We need to get Keith down to Australia for the race in Melbourne.

  9. Deej92 (@deej92) said on 15th October 2013, 0:43

    In a strange way, I wouldn’t mind seeing Vettel match Ascari’s record. Of course, it wouldn’t go down well with some as the same guy will have won every race since the summer break, but the season is nearly over anyway, and then we’ll just appreciate 2014 more (as long as Red Bull/Renault don’t have another dominant package that is).

  10. Colossal Squid (@colossal-squid) said on 15th October 2013, 0:53

    If Vettel does go on to match Ascari’s record then every credit to the man and his team, but I really hope that it doesn’t happen. I’d really enjoy see another driver or two win between now and the end of the season. I’d take anyone but I’m hoping for Grosjean to get a breakthrough win. Still, although it would be tedious to watch, if Vettel did win the next four it would be an amazing feat to be able to bear witness to.

  11. Meanwhile Horner said that the Suzuka victory showed just how good Vettel is.

    “He picked up a bit of damage from the incident with Hamilton that took about 20 points of downforce off the car.

    What is a point of downforce defined as? I’ve seen it used as a term quite a few times before but never actually understood fully what it equates to – is it a universally defined term such as 1 Newton at 100m/s for example or is it to do with how the team adjust wing settings to compensate, i.e a practical measurement which the driver can understand and adjust the car settings to accordingly?

    • Fer no.65 (@fer-no65) said on 15th October 2013, 1:19

      @vettel1 I read it somewhere, I think it was in Peter Warr’s View from the Pitlane (possibly).

      A point of downforce is a hundredth of a fraction of the Downforce (or Lift) Coefficient, which typically varies from 3.0 to 3.5… so 20 points would be a 0.2 deficit on the downforce coefficient.

      Take it with a grain of salt, tho

      • “Downforce=0.5*(air density)*(speed)^2*(reference area)*Cl

        Usually you don’t work with Cl, but with [reference area*Cl], namely SCl.
        SCl has the dimension of surface, i.e. m^2 in SI; typical values are between 2 and 5.

        1 point corresponds to SCl=0.01m^2:
        if your car improves from SCl=4 to SCl=4.30 it has gained 30 points of downforce.

        Working with points is easier because you work with numbers like 5, 7, 30 instead of 0.05, 0.07, 0.30.

        If in the formula for downforce you substitute air density=1.22 kg/m^3 and take into account dividing by 3.6^2 (conversion for speed from m/s to kph) and by 9.81 (conversion from N to kg) you get

        Downforce=0.0048*(speed in kph)^2*SCl

        and finally with 1 point corresponding to SCl=0.01m^2

        1 point [kg] = 0.000048*(speed [kph])^2″

        This looks well-reasoned, from the F1Technical article @cosmas kindly linked to. Thanks all of you who helped @fer-no65, @mantresx and of course @cosmas! :D

      • Cosmas (@cosmas) said on 15th October 2013, 10:20

        reading the above threat my conclusion is that the total loss in downforce was about
        4-6% which for an average speed for suzuka of 200kph translates to about 40-50 kg .
        Very interesting is Paddy Lowes answer in

        Q: Jenson Button has suggested you were ‘30 points’ behind Red Bull in terms of downforce and that it would take six or seven races to make up that deficit. Do you agree with that analysis and can you explain what ‘30 points’ means?

        PL: A point is Formula One code for a hundredth of a fraction of ‘cl’, where ‘cl’ is the downforce coefficient. Physically a Formula One car has a downforce coefficient of let’s say 3 to 3.5. So 30 points would be 30 hundredths which would equate to 0.3. So 30 points might be getting on for 10 percent of the downforce on an F1 car and that could be worth about a second a lap.

        so if 30 points is worth 1sec then 20 points is worth 0.6sec.

        • @cosmas I know of course it could be partially an arbitrary measure, but to lose 0.6s a lap and still win is not a bad performance. However, it’s only likely to translate to that margin in qualifying I assume: the biggest problem would probably be the loss of front downforce causing tyre wear problems due to the understeer, so funny that Webber still failed to manage it as well as Vettel.

          Perhaps they actually ended up pretty close in terms of overall downforce due to the contact, as Webber was running a lower downforce set-up.

          • Cosmas (@cosmas) said on 15th October 2013, 11:05

            @vettel1, more or less you are Probably right.
            About Webber, in total yes , but his lesser downforce was mostly due his smaller rear wing not less front wing.

        • Cosmas (@cosmas) said on 15th October 2013, 10:52

          taking it a step further.. each car gains 0.1sec lap after lap due to fuel burn( about 2.5-3 kg/lap ). So 0.6 sec is equal to fuel burn in 6 laps .
          Ιt is equivalent as if Vettel had from the start 15-18 kg more fuel than he actually needed.

  12. ferrox glideh (@ferrox-glideh) said on 15th October 2013, 2:52

    The photo of Lauda bowling in a Hunt t-shirt gave me a big smile.
    Caption contest anyone?

  13. Red Andy (@red-andy) said on 15th October 2013, 7:26

    I do think all these “in defence of Vettel” articles are somewhat overblown, relative to the amount of criticism he’s received. He was booed at a few races, certainly, but most fans condemned that, even the ones who don’t enjoy seeing him run away with every race.

    But Sky had a segment on Sunday theorizing about why “people” don’t like Vettel, and now we have articles like the one in the Guardian leaping to his defence. Quite what they’re reacting to I don’t know, the booing was weeks ago.

    • mnmracer (@mnmracer) said on 15th October 2013, 9:01

      There’s more than booing. Go on any forum and within minutes you’ll find the most rampant double standard, history-revisioning, fact-raping, hypocrit comments from people who will say anything to make Vettel out to be an evil below-average driver.

      • Red Andy (@red-andy) said on 15th October 2013, 9:42

        But is it any worse than the likes of, say, Hamilton or Alonso have had to put up with these past few years? There are always idiots in comments sections all over the Internet, from those who think Vettel is the evil spawn of an ill-advised union between Satan and Michael Schumacher, to those who say he’s on a par with the likes of Fangio, Clark, Senna and the sport’s other all-time greats, and anyone who disagrees is merely jealous of his success. The majority of sensible people are somewhere in the middle.

        What I fail to understand is when exactly the stated opinions of Internet trolls became a worthy starting point for supposedly sensible pieces of F1 journalism.

      • Yaya Ishaq (@ferrari_412t) said on 15th October 2013, 13:50

        But that’s the same with any driver really, especially considering he is the reigning world champion for the last 4 years its inevitable that he is going to bear the brunt of any criticism and is going to be placed under the microscope more so than anyone else; as unfair as it sounds.

        I don’t understand why people within F1 have such an issue with the dislike Vettel is receiving. Sure it’s not fair but we are now in an age whereby society and people in general are becoming more vociferous in part due to the progression of technology which makes it easier for people to voice their opinions. F1 isn’t what it was 50 years ago whereby booing was totally unacceptable. Its high time people realise this.

        • mnmracer (@mnmracer) said on 15th October 2013, 14:14

          I don’t understand why people within F1 have such an issue with the dislike Vettel is receiving.

          Because it is on a completely different level, and it is not just dislike, it is the tearing down of the sport as a whole by massive amounts of fans making claims that the paddock clearly feels does no justice to Vettel, the team or the sport as a whole. If the whole world claims F1 is a sport with an undeserving, undertalented champion, while the paddock feels differently, it is only natural for the paddock to defend the sport against such false degenerative claims.

      • Loup Garou (@loup-garou) said on 16th October 2013, 2:16

        Totally agree. And if I am not mistaken, I know one of the main forums that mnmracer is speaking about. I joined it in August only to resign in disgust after a month. It is composed of the most biased, bigoted, ill-informed nincompoops whose only purpose seems to be to drag down Vettel in ways that you guys cannot even begin to imagine. What’s more, some of the worst culprits are a couple of mods!

        Are we thinking of the same forums mnmracer?

    • Girts (@girts) said on 15th October 2013, 10:25

      @red-andy I agree with you. Enough is enough. Booing should be condemned but there is no need to defend Vettel every day just because some people refuse to recognise his achievements or blame him for the lack of title battle.

      Blaming a driver for doing his best to win every race is incredibly silly – to put it mildly. Vettel is a multiple world champion, who has constantly thrashed a highly-rated team mate and the best team in F1 is happy to keep him. These are obvious facts. If someone hasn’t recognised that by now, I doubt that Guardian’s articles are going to make him change his mind.

      Every popular driver has fans and haters, who simply don’t let the truth get in the way of the stories that “confirm” their beliefs. For sure, journalists are there to reveal the truth but they’re never going to convince every anonymous poster of it.

  14. Troy Longstaff (@troylongstaff) said on 15th October 2013, 8:40

    Christian Horner wants Mark Webber to win a race – now that’s a line I’d thought I’d never see!

  15. MB (@muralibhats) said on 15th October 2013, 8:59

    In 2013 (As on Date):
    Sebastian Vettel 297
    Fernando Alonso 207
    Kimi Raikkonen 177

    In 2012 (End of Season):
    Sebastian Vettel 281
    Fernando Alonso 278
    Kimi Raikkonen 207

    Kimi has better chances of overhauling his 2012 score. But it looks difficult for Alonso…

    • mnmracer (@mnmracer) said on 15th October 2013, 10:26

      Alonso would needs (average) 4 second places to just pip his 2012 score.
      Kimi needs (average) 4 sixth places.

      • OmarR-Pepper (@omarr-pepper) said on 15th October 2013, 21:03

        @mnmracer Definitely not wishing it to happen, but in a worst-case scenario, if Alonso gets one DNF and Kimi wins next race, the fight for second would be REALLY interesting, as the difference would reduce to just 5 points between them.

        • Loup Garou (@loup-garou) said on 16th October 2013, 4:42

          I have a feeling that Kimi will close-in on Alonso, even though it would be difficult to actually pass him. There seems to be a slight disenchantment at Ferrari & Alonso in the last couple of races whereas, Lotus seem to have had a second wind. I’d like to see that race for second place go down to the wiire.

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