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    Avatar of Iestyn Davies
    Iestyn Davies

    Didn’t realise they start on the back-straight at Mid-Ohio. But those entry fees are great! £40 for the weekend!

    Avatar of Iestyn Davies
    Iestyn Davies

    Ferrari are also geared for lower top speeds than other cars – their turbo is too small and probably gives them a total HP deficit – hence lower top speeds. Toro Rosso are usually the ‘next best’ team after the Mercedes engines, so Renault look OK on top speed, higher than Ferrari anyway. So where else can Renault be weaker than Ferrari? Software? I thought Ferrari were also struggling to get the power down…

    Spa, Monza – Ferraris are likely to be overtaken on the long straights. Tifosi won’t be happy at a Bahrain repeat, on their doorstep..

    Sauber are also struggling for funding… Perez/Telmex helped them revive, and only Hulkenberg could get some speed out of the 2013 Sauber eventually. Gutierrez/Telmex isn’t as lucrative, hence they are considering ‘upgrading’ in money terms from Sutil to Van der Garde next year – Medion to McGregor. Their staff were also all poached after the gem of a 2012 car they produced, where even Red Bull were copying ideas off it…

    Avatar of Iestyn Davies
    Iestyn Davies

    Despite the obvious jokes, no doubt to be repeated when Nelson brings out his first safety car, I think he’ll do quite well in Formula E..

    @craig-o Probably a few will in time, but they might find it hard going, unless some of the older drivers are losing their speed.

    Avatar of Iestyn Davies
    Iestyn Davies

    1. Alonso
    2. Hulkenberg
    3. Bottas
    4. Ricciardo
    5. Grosjean
    6. Kvyat
    7. Magnussen
    8. Hamilton (losing a few positions from mistakes, else top 5)
    9. Bianchi
    10. Vettel

    Avatar of Iestyn Davies
    Iestyn Davies

    Agreed.. and if there was a fourth, then possibly Raikkonen by Grosjean, as we saw in 2013.

    @kingshark Well, they both did a FP1 year with Force India.. so it depends on how they stacked up against their team-mates in those years?

    What about after those three? I would bet on Kvyat, Marciello and Verstappen.. there’s too many to pick from!

    Avatar of Iestyn Davies
    Iestyn Davies

    I’ve made another ‘corrected grid’ for Germany.. and realised I need to include a handicap for Force India and McLaren as well:

    Force India, McLaren -0.25, Ferrari -0.75, Renault -0.90
    Pos	Driver			Car		
    5	Daniel Ricciardo	Red Bull	1’16.373	
    16	Lewis Hamilton		Mercedes	1’16.433 (-2.25 sec) +0.060 (or -0.040?)
    1	Nico Rosberg		Mercedes	1’16.540
    6	Sebastian Vettel	Red Bull	1’16.677
    2	Valtteri Bottas		Williams	1’16.759  +0.386
    7	Fernando Alonso		Ferrari		1’16.899  +0.516
    4	Kevin Magnussen		McLaren		1’16.964  +0.581
    8	Daniil Kvyat		Toro Rosso	1’17.065  +0.692
    3	Felipe Massa		Williams	1’17.078	
    13	Jean-Eric Vergne	Toro Rosso	1’17.385	
    12	Kimi Raikkonen		Ferrari		1’17.523
    9	Nico Hulkenberg		Force India	1’17.764  +1.391
    10	Sergio Perez		Force India	1’17.785
    11	Jenson Button		McLaren		1’17.943	
    14	Esteban Gutierrez	Sauber		1’17.989  +1.616
    15	Romain Grosjean		Lotus		1’17.994  +1.621		
    17	Adrian Sutil		Sauber		1’18.392		
    18	Jules Bianchi		Marussia	1’18.926  +2.553		
    19	Pastor Maldonado	Lotus		1’19.295		
    20	Kamui Kobayashi		Caterham	1’19.508  +3.135		
    21	Max Chilton		Marussia	1’19.739		
    22	Marcus Ericsson		Caterham	

    Renault engines may fit better with the extra tenth taken back off.. track improvement looks like 0.4 per session here, against 0.25 for Austria. Losing FRIC has pushed Lotus back by about half a second per lap, while McLaren have finally moved forwards to be competitive again. So.. taking engine and tyres out of the equation, we are left with car and driver…

    Avatar of Iestyn Davies
    Iestyn Davies

    @npf1 “The teams have been offered Petrov, Sirotkin, Martsenko, and a few other Russian GP3 pay drivers to race.. or they won’t get their equipment back… So, some new drivers make their debut this weekend! Ferrari get first pick..”

    Avatar of Iestyn Davies
    Iestyn Davies

    Great race… talk about unluckiness for Marciello! Two quick qually laps blocked yesterday, engine safety mode cut off today, bad starting position for sprint race tomorrow. The latter two also apply to Pic and Dillmann.

    Avatar of Iestyn Davies
    Iestyn Davies

    I forgot to include an explanation.. It’s the Austria 2014 qualifying times, but I tried to ‘equalise’ for engines, without seeing the exact telemetry. It shows how close it’ll be, once the engines are more developed in 2015, when the others are likely to close in on Mercedes’ current advantage, along with current 2014 chassis strength.

    For Mercedes, I used their best sector times, after Q3 was a snafu. McLaren will be looking to jump up by 0.5 or 0.75 to be a top team again with Honda, same for Lotus with Mercedes. Red Bull is the odd one here, as it looks like Kvyat got the ‘lead car’ instead of Vettel. Maybe a ‘test run’ for 2016..

    The 3 drivers I outlined for replacement, were all way off the pace of their team-mate, despite there only being 9 corners. Grosjean mucked up Q2, while Vergne lost his mojo, after injuring his hand before Q, else Vettel may have been the worst RB driver overall. Chilton was only a third of a second off, but I imagine Palmer might be able to do a better job now, while Button improved in time for Silverstone.

    Avatar of Iestyn Davies
    Iestyn Davies

    @kingshark Interesting.. I looked at the stats I could find on F1F, and it showed Hamilton as having the best average starting position, Alonso 2nd, with the Ferraris 3rd/4th.

    But those overall stats make it look very even, and of course I agree on the point about Monaco, as I knew something like that must have happened to get Massa 2nd in laps led despite less wins that the other 3 title protagonists.

    Looks like we will need to establish which car was best at which track and tot it up, along with reliability, to see which car is best over the season..

    Avatar of Iestyn Davies
    Iestyn Davies

    I agree.. I came to the rough conclusion that Mercedes were gaining 0.75 on Ferrari and 1 second per lap on Renault in outright pace at Austria. Look how this would tighten up the grid:

    Ferrari -0.75, Renault -1 second
    Pos.	No.	Driver			Constructor		Fastest Lap     Car deficit
    1	44	Lewis Hamilton		Mercedes		1.08.442	*Lost pole time*
    5	3	Daniel Ricciardo	Red Bull-Renault	1:08.466	+0.02
    7	26	Daniil Kvyat		Toro Rosso-Renault	1:08.490	+0.05
    4	14	Fernando Alonso		Ferrari			1:08.535	+0.10
    2	6	Nico Rosberg		Mercedes		1:08.644
    1	19	Felipe Massa		Williams-Mercedes	1:08.759	+0.30
    13	1	Sebastian Vettel	Red Bull-Renault	1:08.801
    2	77	Valtteri Bottas		Williams-Mercedes	1:08.846
    8	7	Kimi Räikkönen		Ferrari			1:08.907
    14	13	Pastor Maldonado	Lotus-Renault		1:08.939	+0.50
    15	25	Jean-Éric Vergne	Toro Rosso-Renault	1:09.073
    16	8	Romain Grosjean		Lotus-Renault		1:09.461
    6	20	Kevin Magnussen		McLaren-Mercedes	1:09.473	+1.00
    10	27	Nico Hülkenberg		Force India-Mercedes	1:09.624	+1.20 (one stopping)
    11	11	Sergio Pérez		Force India-Mercedes	1:09.754
    12	22	Jenson Button		McLaren-Mercedes	1:09.780
    17	99	Adrian Sutil		Sauber-Ferrari		1:10.024	+1.60
    18	21	Esteban Gutiérrez	Sauber-Ferrari		1:10.599
    19	17	Jules Bianchi		Marussia-Ferrari	1:10.662	+2.22
    20	10	Kamui Kobayashi		Caterham-Renault	1:10.673	+2.23
    21	4	Max Chilton		Marussia-Ferrari	1:11.025
    22	9	Marcus Ericsson		Caterham-Renault	1:11.560

    Noticeable here are the Williams being the ‘preferred Mercedes customer engine’ as is reported, getting upgrades first, and Toro Rosso’s car not being that much worse than the Red Bull’s.. some could say almost identical in pace…. while Button really looked off the pace, even more so than the car, and there is strong evidence for Gutierrez, Chilton and Ericsson to be replaced.

    In any case, it’s likely we’ll see Red Bull close up on Mercedes next year, while Ferrari and McLaren should be moving on up ahead of the Mercedes customers. Lotus will have an intriguing battle with Williams and Force India for 5th place, while Toro Rosso will probably stay ahead of Sauber and the two small teams from the big push Red Bull is giving it (probably because they can’t spend any more money on the works team), possibly closing on Force India or Lotus, if their development cash is lacking.

    Avatar of Iestyn Davies
    Iestyn Davies

    Definitely the McLaren.. but was the Ferrari poorer in wet conditions in 2007, as it was in 2008? I would also say that Kimi/Felipe looked much stronger in the mid-2000s, than they currently do in the mid-2010s. Both are due retirement within the next two years, along with Button, while Alonso looks like he can ‘go the longest’ of that generation, like Schumacher or Barrichello before him, and possibly Hamilton, Rosberg or Vettel after him.

    My instincts say McLaren 2007 and Ferrari 2008, but McLaren really kept on developing the car for number 1 driver Hamilton in 2008, to make up for losing 2007 (which hurt the 2009 A-Spec car badly), while the Ferrari struggled chiefly in wet conditions and swung in development from Kimi to Felipe mid-year. So, perhaps there is merit in swapping around this order to Ferrari 2007 and McLaren 2008. But, whichever car has better reliability will always be a better championship car, as both are fast enough to win multiple races.

    PS. Checking the 2007 statistics, it seems that McLaren had a better qualifying car, while Ferrari took a lot of the race fastest laps. Hamilton also led the most laps that year, with Massa second, interestingly enough. Kimi set two fastest laps ‘out of frustration at not being able to pass the car in-front’.. if only he had DRS..

    Avatar of Iestyn Davies
    Iestyn Davies

    Sato and Negrao out, Sorensen and Dillmann in, and Rossi staying till season end would be a good development. But the former drivers bring the budget, while the latter drivers probably are relying on talent to stay as long as possible. Sorensen and Dillmann stepping in the car and getting top tens are noticeable.. Rossi must be hoping to at least match Pic this weekend.

    Sorensen at least has FR3.5, which costs less than GP2, and hence Negrao moved over from FR3.5 for progression. But results this year seem to indicate that Sorensen would do well in GP2, while Negrao needs more time back in FR3.5.

    Sato will do well to win the Auto GP title and try again next year. In related news.. the last AutoGP winner, racing latecomer Michela Cerruti, has also signed for Trulli GP in Formula E.. so there’ll be two women on the inaugural Formula E grid, and both race winners at that.

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    Iestyn Davies

    Great topic @craig-o. I have to say that I do agree with you as well.

    My theory is, we are witnessing two of the greats, and with Hamilton in there too, we really are at another golden age of drivers, just like in the 80s. This ‘top three’ may in time be regarded almost as highly as Prost-Senna-Schumacher IMO, especially if Hamilton and Vettel continue to reel off the wins and titles in the two top teams. This also requires Vettel to dominate Ricciardo however, and not be fighting Alonso for 5th, but more for the win, as was the case at Monza.

    I am waiting to see which will turn out to be the better battle.. Alonso/Vettel or Hamilton/Vettel. We’ve had a bit of both so far, but up till now, Alonso has been more memorable, with Hamilton mainly fighting Webber in 2010, or having lots of failures in 2012. But there is scope for these two to really battle hard in the next few years.. Will it be as respectful and clean as with Alonso? Hard to say.. They also have previous battle experience from F3…

    Avatar of Iestyn Davies
    Iestyn Davies

    @npf1 Surely that money would have to go to Robin Frijns? 3 titles in a row, yet can’t get more than the odd F1 test day in two years?! The other Dutch talents (Verstappen, de Vries… indirectly Vandoorne?) look like they will all get enough support to make it into F1. Quite amazing to think we could have almost 5 Dutch F1 drivers (VDG) on the grid in a few years time, and Albers as a team principal.. unless the incoming Gerhard Unger displaces him..

    Jaafar will be the next Petronas-backed Malaysian.. maybe he’ll be getting a few Lotus FP1s next year for taking the Mercedes engines..

    Cecotto, strangely enough, has turned over a new leaf this year – he now looks like a respectable driver! Getting married has really calmed him down. A Top 3 finish in GP2 this year – finally ready for F1! Can’t believe I’m saying that, after watching GP2 the last few years..

    The 2014 GP2 Feature race winners so far are: Vandoorne, Palmer, Cecotto, Nasr, Evans. All probably ready for F1 pretty soon IMO, while Marciello looks like the one most likely to join that list next, if he can get some luck.

    @oeuribe Julian Leal now has a super-licence, after completing a fraction over 300km with Caterham.. 51 laps exactly was the minimum running needed. Montoya looks very strong in Indycars right now, and Munoz a good rookie of the year, to go with Huertas’ victory. Not to mention James Rodriguez.. a good moment for Colombian sport!

    So I take it that EJ Viso was the one blasted for fraud? He’s disappeared from racing.. La Rocca might have some potential, but definitely more than Gomez or Gonzalez. I can understand some state support for those 3 drivers (Pastor, Jnr and La Rocca), if it works for Venezuela. Although Viso is lucky to be alive at all after France 2007.

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