Sutil: Teenage “kids” aren’t ready for F1

F1 Fanatic Round-up

Adrian Sutil, Force India, Singapore, 2013In the round-up: Teenage drivers such as Daniil Kvyat and Sergey Sirotkin are too young for F1, says Adrian Sutil.


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Teenagers are too young for F1 – Sutil (ESPN)

“I think it’s far too early [for them]. They are kids and you need to be a grown up man here in Formula One.”

Russians at Sauber and Toro Rosso look young for F1 ?ǣ but money talks (The Guardian)

Sergey Sirotkin: “It’s a bit different driving an F1 car. I need to get used to the power-steering. Our preparation programme has just started so I am not quite ready, but by the time the first race comes, I will be ready, I know that. There is nothing I am afraid of. I am looking forward to it.”

Di Resta set for High Court (The Telegraph)

Paul di Resta’s long-running legal dispute with his former manager Anthony Hamilton is due to go before the High Court at the end of next month, it has emerged, with the British driver describing the situation as ‘unfortunate’ as he battles to secure his future in Formula One.”

F1 sale weakened chief Bernie Ecclestone?s position, court told (FT, registration required)

“Mr Miles, representing Mr Ecclestone on the second day of the case, said Constantin Medien?s allegation ‘simply does not add up’. BayernLB, which owned the 47 per cent stake in F1 before selling it to CVC, had ‘been trying to sell its stake for years’ and was ‘delighted’ with the offer from CVC, Mr Miles said.”

Kimi Raikkonen: I have blossomed at Lotus (Gulf News)

“These past two years have been good for me. I have enjoyed driving for a team that has allowed me to be completely myself and also gain success on track.”

Teams willing to aid Pirelli test plans (Autosport)

Lotus team principal Eric Boullier: “If it doesn’t cost a penny, yes. We could support this.”

Drivers say claims of doping in F1 are all smoke and no fire (The National)

Former FIA medical delegate Gary Hartstein: “By definition, if it is not on the prohibited list, then you can take it all day every day and it?s not doping. You may get a performance advantage, you may die, any number of things might happen, but it?s not doping ?ǣ maybe stupid, but not doping.”

Bernie Ecclestone says India has to decide on its F1 future (IBN)

“Next year looks tough, but we should return in 2015. We want to even go beyond the five-year contract and for that to happen, there are certain issues that need to be sorted out in your country. Plus, there is a contract extension clause in the deal.”

F1 Race Stars Powered Up Edition Coming To Wii U! (Codemasters)

“Coming this December to the Wii U exclusively to the Nintendo eShop is a fast-to-the-fun arcade racing game for all ages, expanded with fantastic new content and features to take advantage of Wii U hardware. F1 Race Stars is back, and it?s Powered up!”

F1 star Lewis Hamilton meets child labourers in India (Metro)

“The former world champion, a global ambassador for Save the Children, took time out after Sunday?s Indian grand prix to travel to Calcutta and meet youngsters who used to make bricks for a living.”

Newcastle United journalist ban emulates Sir Alex Ferguson arrogance (The Guardian)

Marina Hyde: “I can just picture Lewis [Hamilton], pacing the corridors of his mansion in the land to which he has exiled himself ?ǣ Monaco, having decamped there from Switzerland ?ǣ wondering how he could possibly contribute more to society. If he ever puts his finger on the answer, I do hope he lets us know.”


Comment of the day

Owen Conwell asks if there are other countries more deserving of a place on the world championship calendar than Abu Dhabi.

It’s no doubt that the Yas Marina circuit is a major architectural achievement and a world class facility. But it should concern fans of Formula One that country?s with no racing history, no team and driver involvement, few fans and questionable politics and documented human rights abuses seem to get handed a grand prix no questions asked. Just so long as you fork over the billions demanded by Bernie and the FIA and you get your own boring cookie cutter track with little personality that no driver likes.

It should also concern fans that France, a country that founded grand prix racing, has a rich and varied history in the sport, has two drivers on the grid and supplies the most successful engine in F1 history to four teams somehow has been absent track wise for five years and counting. If Bernie and the FIA would give France the level of support it deserves, ticket sales for a French GP would be through the roof.
Something is not right here.

Owen Conwell (@Skitty4lb)

From the forum

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On this day in F1

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147 comments on Sutil: Teenage “kids” aren’t ready for F1

  1. Bosley (@bosley) said on 31st October 2013, 5:37

    @Skitty4lb without wanting to be that guy, theres 3 French drivers on the grid.

  2. JCost (@jcost) said on 31st October 2013, 6:23

    Looks like Codemaster just redesigned “Mario Kart”…

  3. Fisha695 (@fisha695) said on 31st October 2013, 7:29

    Sutil was 23 when he entered F1, as somebody who is 25 I feel that I can safely say there isn’t much difference between being an 18/19 year old or a 23 year old in regards to being more or less of a “man” or even maturity. Heck based atleast on my circle of friends I’d lump ages 16-30 into one category when it comes to maturity and agefullness (which is a word I just made up haha).

    • Robbie said on 31st October 2013, 13:27

      I disagree. I think there is usually a big difference in maturity and experience going from 16 to 30 years of age. Recent studies suggest that our brains continue developing until about the age of 25, before which some youth have not developed fully the appreciation of consequences for their actions. This has been talked about even just in recent days as yet another teenager near where I live died while riding on the hood and falling off of his buddies car at speed, for the thrill of it, and the You Tube ‘fame’.

  4. Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 31st October 2013, 7:34

    There is one key point in the Comment of the Day that I completely disagree with. It’s a favourite argument in some quarters, and it bothers me every time that it is raised: the idea that some countries are more deserving of a Grand Prix than others because if their “heritage”. It is, to my mind, colonialism, which I find extremely ironic (and will explain in due course).

    The argument is that countries like France deserve a race because of their contribution to world motorsport over the past sixty years, whereas other countries, like the United Arab Emirates, are less deserving of a race, because they have not made that same contribution. But sixty years ago, France did not have that “racing heritage” in Formula 1 because there was no World Championship. And yet, it was included in the calendar. What’s to say that, in sixty years, the UAE will not have made a similar contribution? But people would happily take away their race because they haven’t made that contribution, and in the process, take away their best chance to develop interest in local motorsport. So when you break it down to it’s simplest form, France is more deserving of a race because it was in Western Europe where motorsport developed. The UAE was no, and so does not deserve a race or the chance to develop it’s own motorsport scene. That is colonialism.

    I find it ironic that people find it distasteful for a race to take place in the UAE because of human rights abuses. Nothing the Emiratis have done rivals what the European colonial powers managed to do. While colonialism is dead, the effects are still being felt. Everybody loves the Belgian Grand Prix, but the Belgians lit the fuse on the powder keg that is the Democratic Republic of the Congo. They deliberately installed minority groups in positions of power and sowed discord among the local population so that they would fight amongst one another and could never band together to form a resistance against the Belgians, leaving the Belgians free to mine whatever they liked from the land for as long as they liked. And while they left Africa fifty years ago, the Congo is still tearing itself apart because of what the Belgians did. When UN Secretary-General Dag Hammarskjold came close to cleaning up the problem in the 1960s, the Europeans opposed it because the idea had cone from the Soviets. Never mind that it could have allowed the Congo to start functioning like a country; the West vehemently opposed it because they would afraid it would cut off their access to previous resources and allow the Soviets to gain influence.

    So if human rights records are going to be the deciding factor in who gets a race, the UAE’s questionable labour practices are a lesser evil than the way Belgium deliberately destroyed half a continent for profit.

    • Agreed, and one could extend this argument and ask what China has contributed to Motorsport historically, to go along with their human rights record.

    • Sumedh said on 31st October 2013, 14:20

      Thank you!

      The ‘deserving of a race’ argument has absolutely no basis in the modern world. No one starts off with a ‘history’. It has to be built. If countries like United Arab Emirates are willing to put in the money till the time a history of F1 develops there, who are the Europeans to stop that?

    • Mike Dee (@mike-dee) said on 31st October 2013, 14:43

      I would agree with you if Belgium still had those policies. But they no longer do, so it doesn’t make sense to use this as a criterion. Otherwise there would be no places where to have a GP anymore.

      Spain? Think about the Aztecs and Inkas.
      US? Look at what they did to the Inuit and Indians. Although I guess you can also blame the British, so no British GP either.
      Germany? Holocaust.
      Australia? Treatment of Aborigines.
      etc etc

      As long as you go back far enough, every country will not behaved in a way that meets current human right standards. So if you want human rights to play a role, the only sensible way is to look at current policies.


      • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 31st October 2013, 19:30

        @mike-dee – That’s the point I’m trying to make: if we decide who gets a race based on their human rights record, there wouldn’t be any races because everyone has done something wrong at some point. Belgium might not have those policies any more, but that doesn’t change the way that the effects of those policies are still being felt today.

    • TheBass (@) said on 31st October 2013, 16:41


      The part about racing heritage was perfectly said. I agree completely.

      The part about human rights was poorly thought. Take a couple of minutes to think about it more carefully.

      • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 31st October 2013, 19:38

        @silence – Oh, I’ve thought about it long and hard ever since people called for the Bahrain Grand Prix to be cancelled because of their human rights record. As soon as you start judging one race based on its human rights, you have to judge all of them. If the UAE does not deserve a race because of its labour practices and Bahrain does not deserve a race because of the way it handled the uprising, then does China deserve a race because of it’s ongoing persecution of Falun Gong? Does Russia deserve a race because of its policies about LGBT rights? Does America deserve a race because of its mass surveillance programs?

        You can claim that my reasoning is poorly thought out, but you’re evidently uncomfortable with the idea that everyone will be judged. If one race gets judged based on the host country’s human rights record, then all races have to be judged. Anything else is hypocritical – and *that* is what you should be uncomfortable about.

      • Breno (@austus) said on 31st October 2013, 23:50

        So if the UAE abandons all that, right now, at this moment. Will you just forgive them? Ask politicians to let that go? Defend them?

    • Owen Conwell (@skitty4lb) said on 31st October 2013, 20:43

      I acknowledge that bring up the politics and human rights of a specific country is a very debatable and controversial topic. Especially on a website that is read and viewed by people from many different nationality’s and backgrounds. I also acknowledge that every country in history has human rights violations as some point, if you go back that far. Even western country’s it still happens. I believe that most sensible thing is to view what the governments of the countries in question support currently with regards to human rights. Thank you for you dissertation on country’s human rights history.

  5. hunocsi (@hunocsi) said on 31st October 2013, 8:09

    pit radio was included in broadcasts in 1995, almost 15 years before F1

    My memories might be wrong, but weren’t the first pit radios broadcasted around 2004 in F1?

  6. Girts (@girts) said on 31st October 2013, 8:28

    I think that young age or relatively moderate previous racing experience isn’t reason enough to say that a driver is not ready for F1. Vettel, Raikkonen, Alonso and Button were not much older or much more experienced than Sirotkin and Kvyat when they started racing in F1. But every driver is different so it’s very possible that one teenager can easily skip GP2 and FR3.5, while the other needs more time to come of age. And it’s also true that the rookies of today don’t have the privilege of wide testing opportunities that Vettel and Raikkonen were able to enjoy.

    What I’m concerned about is that no one seems to be ready to take responsibility for promoting a young driver to F1 too early. It’s obvious that a driver will almost never turn down an offer to race in F1 as he doesn’t know if he’ll ever get that chance again. But if a driver fails, then it is assumed that it’s because of his own fault, that he simply isn’t good enough. But perhaps he just wasn’t quite ready for the big stage yet and needed one or two more years to mature. Unfortunately I don’t think that Red Bull or Sirotkin’s sponsors care about that and they obviously won’t feel anyhow responsible if their drivers don’t meet the expectations.

  7. Jack (@jackisthestig) said on 31st October 2013, 9:59

    I didn’t know Burn was alcoholic.

  8. coefficient (@coefficient) said on 31st October 2013, 11:59

    I agree with Sutil. F1 will lose all credibility if it allows itself to become a creche for the spoilt offspring of billionaires.

  9. Rhedgehog (@rhedgehog) said on 31st October 2013, 12:12

    Following Sutil’s behaviour in that nightclub, I can’t help but think he’s hardly the person to be talking about being ‘grown up’…

  10. Yeah Adrian – you’re exactly the guy who should teach us what a man is!

  11. Boxcar Racer (@mojopixel) said on 31st October 2013, 13:14

    Force India driver Adrian Sutil has warned that letting teenagers loose in Formula One with minimal experience could be dangerous for other drivers on track.

    Yes, and letting Adrian Sutil drink bottled beer is dangerous for everyone in the vicinity of Adrian Sutil!

  12. GeorgeTuk (@georgetuk) said on 31st October 2013, 13:52

    Yes Sutil, you are so grown up with your attacking someone in a bar with broken glass.

    And then sulking when your friend was so disappointed he didn’t want to testify on your behalf.

    Yes you are so grown up.

  13. Red Andy (@red-andy) said on 31st October 2013, 14:04

    I don’t think Adrian Sutil is in a position to determine who is and isn’t ready for F1. This is the guy who lost control of his car, in the dry, on the racing line in Korea. Are those the actions of a “grown up man?”

    Just because you’re old enough to drink champagne doesn’t necessarily mean you should be let loose with a glass of it, does it Adrian?

  14. Sauber (@mumito) said on 31st October 2013, 14:35

    Sauber choose Sirotkin. In the past it was Kimi and Seb. Also two very young drivers.
    Why dont we trust Sauber?

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