Fernando Alonso, Pastor Maldonado, Esteban Gutierrez, Interlagos, 2013

Most teams take paying drivers – Montezemolo

F1 Fanatic Round-upPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

Fernando Alonso, Pastor Maldonado, Esteban Gutierrez, Interlagos, 2013In the round-up: Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo says most of the moves on the driver market this year have been motivated by money.


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Ferrari chief doubts cost cap can work (Autosport)

“This year all the movements of the drivers has been basically based – except for [Kimi] Raikkonen to Ferrari – based on what money drivers can give to the teams. This is for Force India, for Sauber, for Lotus and for Williams. It is not healthy…”

Schumacher helmet camera ‘examined’ (BBC)

“Investigators in France are examining a camera which had been fixed to the ski helmet of injured Formula 1 driver Michael Schumacher, media reports say.”

Schumacher fans project tribute on hospital (The Telegraph)

“Light projectionist Olivier Beinkowski wanted to send a special message to Michael Schumacher on his 45th birthday. So he drove down to Grenoble with his friend and fellow Schumacher fan Florian Merkr and at night’s fall, set up a projection on the hospital wall that read: ’45 Schumi Stay strong. keep fighting’.”

Ferrari’s heart beats for Michael (Ferrari)

“Over two hundred fans from Italian and French Scuderia Ferrari Clubs converged on the Grenoble university hospital today, while many others, from Germany and Spain, responded to the call from Ferrari, to pay a special tribute to Michael Schumacher on his forty fifth birthday.”

We are overwhelmed! (Michael Schumacher)

“The incredible sympathies shown today by the Ferrari fans outside the hospital has utterly overwhelmed us and moved us all to tears. We are deeply grateful for it and also for all the heartwarming and heartfelt wishes for Michael to get well soon, which have reached us from all over the world.”

Merc ‘constantly learning’ with engine (ESPN)

Niki Lauda: “Oil and water must be in a precise temperature window. If it goes beyond just a few degrees above a certain limit, it tears up everything.”

The shortest month (Toro Rosso)

“On the Scuderia Toro Rosso front, the first STR9 chassis is currently being assembled in the Faenza factory. New rules or not, the same procedures apply and over the Christmas period Jean-Eric Vergne and Russian rookie Daniil Kvyat turned up at the factory for the traditional seat fitting in the new chassis that will carry all our hopes in 2014.”

Bernie Ecclestone Could Lose F1 Empire in Court (International Business Times)

“Bernie Ecclestone could lose his 40-year hold on Formula One when legal action over the sale of a stake in the motorsport concludes within weeks.”


Comment of the day

@JerseyF1 on a noteworthy development on the engines front:

If could be interesting between Williams and McLaren next year with both using customer Mercedes engines. Since the days when these teams dominated F1 in the early 90s it has often been a case of one having a top works engine whilst the other doesn’t with Williams dominating with Renault and McLaren having a long run of success (though not always titles) with Mercedes and Williams having a brief spell of moderate success with Mercedes.

With both having the same engines next year and with entirely new car designs being required it will be a straight fight between their engineers which should be a good indication as to whether Williams has still got it.

In terms of the other variables it’s also quite close, each has an experienced driver with race wins and a title fight under their belt both of whom are considered top drivers but not all-time greats. Both are backed up by young hot-shots (Bottas clearly will have more F1 experience but McLaren clearly think that Magnussen is something special and with major technical changes existing F1 experience may not be as useful as normal).

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On this day in F1

Three years ago today Chris Dyer was replaced as Ferrari’s head of race engineering. The move came in the wake of Fernando Alonso losing the drivers’ championship to Sebastian Vettel at the final race of 2010 following a strategic error.