Sergey Sirotkin, Sauber, Sochi, 2013

No reason to drop Russian Grand Prix – Todt

F1 Fanatic Round-upPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

Sergey Sirotkin, Sauber, Sochi, 2013In the round-up: FIA president Jean Todt is not considering cancelling the Russian Grand Prix amid growing concern over the political crisis involving the country and Ukraine which has led to sanctions being imposed against Russian institutions.

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Russian GP on track despite Ukraine crisis (Reuters)

“International Automobile Federation (FIA) president Jean Todt, speaking separately to reporters, said that currently there was ‘nothing that should change the running of the calendar’.”

Ecclestone ‘paid banker $44m bribe’ (BBC)

“Gribkowsky, the star witness for the prosecution, claims he was first approached by Mr Ecclestone in Singapore. ‘I had a carrot dangled in front of me. I grabbed the carrot,’ he told the court in Munich.”

Former banker tells court of Formula One chief’s $80m offer (FT, registration required)

“[Gribkowsky] told the court that in addition to proposing the $80m sum, Mr Ecclestone described [Singapore] ‘as the last safe harbour’ for hiding money.”

F1 warned against ‘artificial’ noise (Autosport)

Force India deputy team principal Bob Fernley: “If we’re judging F1 on noise alone we’re probably using the wrong criteria.”

Jenson Button rules out retirement and vows to race on for sixteenth season (The Mirror)

“No, you still give it the most you can. I enjoy my job. I want to be in a competitive car next year. I definitely want to be in F1.”

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Snapshot

Jaime Alguersuari, Richard Branson, Sam Bird, Virgin Racing Formula E Team, 2014

Virgin’s Formula E team used this image to announce their driver line-up yesterday. Sir Richard Branson (centre) will probably not be doing as much of the driving as Jaime Alguersuari and Sam Bird.

Also, note the 2010 Virgin F1 car in the background…

Comment of the day

Lewis Hamilton says Nico Rosberg is as tough as team mate as Fernando Alonso was but @Colossal-Squid isn’t convinved:

I think it’s very hard to compare Rosberg in 2014 to Alonso in 2007. Fernando coming into 2007 was the hottest property on the grid – a double world drivers’ champion and a multiple race winner who had just beaten the great Michael Schumacher to the championship in 2006. I agree that Alonso has matured greatly since the events of 2007, both on the track and off of it, but I still don’t think Rosberg is at the level of a double world champion.

He’s a great driver to be sure, but I don’t see the comparison to 2007′s Alonso… Rosberg isn’t accustomed to fighting for a championship or even regular wins yet. Alonso in 2007 most definitely was. This can make a huge difference.
@Colossal-Squid

From the forum

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On this day in F1

1994 F1 seasonTwenty years ago today Michael Schumacher took the first pole position of his career in qualifying for the Monaco Grand Prix.

Mika Hakkinen’s McLaren joined him on the front row of the grid.

Images © Sauber, Virgin Racing