Fernando Alonso, Ferrari, Jerez, 2011

Alonso doubts more overtaking in 2011

F1 Fanatic round-upPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

In today’s round-up: Alonso’s overtaking doubts and Kubica calls Barrichello.


Top F1 links from the past 24 hours:

Alonso: Passing just as hard in 2011 (Autosport)

“It can be useful to overtake a car that is one or two seconds slower. Maybe the rule’s objective is to favour an overtaking move when a race gets ruined by the impossibility of passing a much slower car, as happened to me with [Vitaly] Petrov in Abu Dhabi. Overtaking between front runners will be difficult in 2011 too.”

Rubens Barrichello on Twitter

“Guess from who I received a call today? Robert Kubica… thanks God he is OK, talking normally… I was so happy…”

Via the F1 Fanatic Live Twitter app

Formula One set to bring in a cap to team budgets, says Red Bull boss (The Guardian)

“We agree with restricting activity but don’t cherry-pick… let’s do a transparent once-and-for-all deal with this.” He indicated that this would be equivalent to a budget cap and when asked if there would be a difference between the two he said “that’s a very good question”.

Sauber sponsors happy with secrecy (Reuters)

“When the Ferrari-powered Sauber team went looking for sponsors last year, however, that is exactly what they found: companies who wanted to be involved in the glamour sport without the world at large knowing about it. So the midfield battlers came up with a typically Swiss solution to lure them in: the ‘Sauber Club One’, effectively a secret society for corporate shrinking violets happy to spend their money while ticking the ‘no publicity’ box.”

Gearing up for new F1 season (BBC)

“This year, for the Bahrain GP in particular I want to use social media to help get the whole of the country watching the first race of the season…and that is where you come in.”

Whiting impressed by Delhi F1 circuit (ESPN Star)

“Whiting completed his inspection of the layout in Noida on Sunday and was extremely pleased with the progress that had been made on the site. With the granular hard court layer of the surface now being completed and the run off areas for corners also nearing completion, laying of the tarmac for the track will commence on the 15th of March.”

Felipe and Fernando, actors for the day (Ferrari)

“After four days of testing from Thursday to Sunday, developing the Ferrari F150th Italia, today, Felipe Massa and Fernando Alonso were back at work at the Jerez circuit, in southern Spain, shooting a series of promotional films for the Scuderia and its partners.”

Follow F1 news as it breaks using the F1 Fanatic live Twitter app.

Comment of the day

Tim reminds us of one of the more comically-named F1 entries:

Ah, but what about Osella?s chassis from 1988?

The Italian team used the chassis designation FA1 followed by a letter to show the year. So the team used FA1H in 1986, FA1I in 1987 and FA1L (FAIL) in 1988.

Never has a terrible car been so well named??

Happy birthday!

Today we say happy birthday to three F1 Fanatic readers: Tom, Tim P and East Londoner!

On this day in F1

Five years ago new team Super Aguri named their drivers for the 2006 season: Takuma Sato and rookie Yuji Ide.

That completed the grid for the season, although Ide would soon be dropped for Franck Montagny:

Image ?? Ferrari spa/Ercole Colombo

181 comments on “Alonso doubts more overtaking in 2011”

  1. Its my birthday too! :D

    1. Happy birthday to you and the the others, then! :-)

      1. Happy Birthday!

        Keith has missed my birthday for two years now :P

        1. I remember seeing your birthday cry out last Year! Happy birthday and keep smiling!

    2. Enjoy it! The same goes for Tom, Tim P and East Londoner off course, have an great day.

      1. Happy Birthday!

    3. Happy birthday Ives; F1 and Mouse_Nightshirt.

      Mouse_Nightshirt – sorry if I have indeed overlooked you twice in a row. I have put both your names on the list so it shouldn’t happen next year.

      1. Happy Birthday to Alex Wurz and Graham hill too!

  2. That Sauber thing is interesting. That logo kind of reminds me of the S.P.E.C.T.R.E. logo in the early Bond films.

    1. It’s interesting, but because it’s all secret, who really knows if there any companies that are actually members of Sauber Club One, or if it’s just PR spin on Sauber’s part?

    2. Do you think they all pay their sponsorship money out of Swiss bank accounts?

      Perhaps secrecy just comes naturally to the Swiss.

    3. I actually think this might be the rescue of having nice liveries. Just think off a Williams getting ist club members (or shareholders?) to decide on a good livery for the car, choosing off course from several options put to them by the team management.

      That might mean the end of clogged up liveries with tiny sponsors all over the car. But it shows Sauber is having a swiss club for now, with a solid but bland livery not offending anyone.

      It even makes the F1Fanatic – HRT more of a realistic possibility! Just have the club join in with some companies sponsoring it and you can be a secret member!

      1. I actually think this might be the rescue of having nice liveries.

        The C30?!! I agree that too many logos can look cluttered, but this new Sauber livery was for me the biggest letdown of the pre-season (until Kubica’s crash of course).

    4. That’s what that C1 logo is that appeared from th 2010 Canada GP – glad to know that – it has been annoying me for ages!

  3. BBC shoudl focus on australian race instead of the borefest in Bahrain.

    as an added bonus, they’re now protesting in Bahrain, so if this continues like in Egypt and Tunisia, the race itself might be in jeapardy…

    1. BBC shoudl focus on australian race instead of the borefest in Bahrain.

      Easier to get a large audience for an afternoon race than an early morning one.

      1. Why not make the Melbourne race a midnight event then? I’m sure, that with the right marketing the track would be full and it would be afternoon in Europe, so we’d have a large TV audience.

        1. Why not make the Melbourne race a midnight event then?

          There’s no way that’s going to happen. The do-gooders of Melbourne are already trying their best to shut the event down, claiming it wastes taxpayers’ money. Of course, this is nonsense, as the global television audience and the beneficiaries attributed to it far outweigh any costs. Besides, the government have never actually released the annual figures for the revenue the Grand Prix generates outside of ticket sales. Believe it or not, all of the 200 000 international and interstate visitors have to sleep somewhere and eat somewhere – and I doubt there’s an event anywhere in Australia that even rivals the amount of visitors the Grand Prix attracts. Anyway, Ron Walker and all at the AGPC have all but confirmed there is absolutely no possibility of the Australian Grand Prix being run under lights.

          But a true fan would stay up to watch a Grand Prix anyway. I watched every single race live this year, and I was actually going to bed as the sun came up on Monday after the Brazilian Grand Prix. If the Australian Grand Prix doesn’t get a European Television audience as the rest of the races – who cares? It is one of the best races of the year every time we go there, so why jeopardise it’s already insecure future further?

          1. As a former resident of the Albert Park area I can tell you that the Grand Prix is unquestioningly a rather big pain in the ass. I’m addicted to F1 and I still hate the thought of Albert Park being turned into a circuit (even if only temporarily). Though ‘conceptually’ the idea is pretty cool the reality is not as ‘spangly’.

            I’m sure plenty we’ll disagree of course.

          2. Yes, because staying up till Midnight on a SUNDAY presents no problems whatsoever!

            I’m an Australian, and I’ve lived in the UK. I can’t tell you how annoying it is to have to listen to the British complain about the time they have to get up on a Sunday morning to watch the Australian Grand Prix. When I was in the UK it was fantastic to have so many races on at a time it was easy to watch, and getting up early for the occasional race was bliss compared to what was usual at home.

            Australians fans stay up late Sunday night to watch just about every race. Don’t you think it is fair that we have our own race at a time that is convenient for us?

          3. Alright, alright, maybe it wasn’t the best idea. Don’t hate me ;)

    2. as an added bonus, they’re now protesting in Bahrain

      Actually, it’s a holiday called “Anger Day”, not a mass protest.

      1. I’d like to know where to got you information from? Cos everywhere I’m looking, seems to be an uprising started by students using social networks inspired by the Egyptian Revolution…

      2. Ok, I can firm, it’s not a national holiday, it is intact a student started protest. Joe Sawards written about it and there are videos on the NY Times website here :


        1. ‘Confirm’.. And ‘in fact’.. *sigh*.. technology eh?

        2. Correct. I think many underestimate what is occurring in that part of the world. It’s not just a few angry students with sticks and signs.

        3. Does not look too good for the ruling group in Bahrain.

          I also read some tweets from GP2 drivers and comentators feeling not too happy with being there right now for GP2 asia!

          I seriously doubt this is anywhere near a local “anger day” as you say PM, where did you get that from?

          Liked the tweet by Adam Cooper though about avoiding big crowds at Bahrain not being a problem for all 4 of the visitors!

      3. as an added bonus, they’re now protesting in Bahrain, so if this continues like in Egypt and Tunisia, the race itself might be in jeapardy…

        I actually wouldn’t mind if the race was cancelled. Melbourne is where the proper racing starts anyway.

      4. is that a joke? :|

      5. @ PM, If you read any news other than that of F1, you would know that the first protests in Tunisia were started after Friday prayers, called ‘a day of rage’, and that there were huge mass protests. In Egypt, exactly the same thing happened. So the idea that

        “it’s a holiday called ‘Anger Day’, not a mass protest”

        Is just plain ignorant. Its an organised mass protest, and although we all know that the regime in Bahrain is far stronger that that in Egypt let alone Tunisia, it should still be recognised for what it is.

        1. I think PM had a missed attempt at humour there, but it certainly did have whiff of condescension on it.

      6. “Anger Day” is not a holiday, but a planned mass protest.

    3. remember we’re back to the old bahrain this year, so hopefully it won’t be as awful as last year!

    4. I would rather Bernie told his FOM filmers to do a better job on the live feed. That might make the difference together with the shorter track being back.
      Oh and the DRS wings helping in overtaking, or at least the curiosity off us all waiting for the drivers to have a go.

  4. I reckon Alonso’ll find it hard.. Kamui and Hamilton will use the tools at hand and find ways.

    Is he still complaining about Vitaly holding him up? ‘Vitaly, Fernando is faster than you… What a blooming marvellous job you are doing lad!!!’

    Can’t stand the (what comes across as) whinging…

    1. Me thinks you might be being a little hard on the guy Hare, It’s almost as though he can’t open his mouth without someone calling it whining. If Mark Webber had made these comments we’d take it at face value, he thinks the wings won’t help overtaking cars that are more evenly matched. Him being held up by Petrov was his example of a faster car being held up by a considerably slower one. Can we blame him for not thinking of a different example than one of his own personal experiences?
      (especially one which he may think cost him the title)

      I respect your opinions and comments (and enjoy reading them most of the time),
      just think you should cut him some slack and not become one of the ‘blind haters’ (no offence mate).

      1. I know, but I’m getting tired of Ferrari facade that’s been appearing since Kimi left. perhaps it was there before I don’t know,

        Ferrari and Alonso seem to have it in their minds that they should be winning almost by rights at times. Maybe the expectation and the worship of Ferrari is so high in the Tifosi that they believe it themselves.

        Regarding Webber, he doesn’t drive for a team that campaign to have 3 cars, that suits their budget but few elses. He’s not the no.1 driver with the full worship and expectation of the most successful team in F1 history behind, so yeah, the context is different. Most of us feel he’s fighting the team half the time, so it’s easier to feel on his side. Plus he’s positive in the interviews, so shows a happier and more human side to himself, I can count on one hand the number of times I’ve not seen a detached and engaged Alonso. But hey, I’m just a spectator, I don’t know the guy.

        Immediately before the tests, we heard LDM and Alonso, say that driving was getting more complicated and harder, and moving away from pure driving. Why can’t they say that they will enjoy the new challenges this season, and hope to make the best of them? The tone is all too often negative. Then once a season LDM gives and interview and sparks rumours of a break away from FIA, its like a woman controlling her man by saying she’s gong to leave him if he doesn’t do what she says.

        To put it another way, they constantly come across self-righteous, hard done by.

        Fellipe doesn’t, he’s usually pretty fair. But lets be honest, Ferrari is a religion and I think it bends people egos and pride when they don’t get their way. LDMs Ferrari seem to believe in their own living legends.

        As regards to hating. I dont hate Ferrari ( but you’re right to say it, as it could be easy not to measure your words, and sometimes you have to be pulled back on occasion, so I respect your comment), I just don’t admire the attitude of LDM and his Horse Whispering ways, he seems to have infected Alonso too.

        However, they make Formula One better for being there, and they always have. It’s much more emotional and entertaining as a result. They just happen to be playing the ‘Dick Dastardly’ role at the moment. IMO.

        anyways, I wont say anything more about it this week. I promise :)

        1. @hare,

          To be fair to the Alonso-Massa comparison, Massa doesn’t know words so he always comes across more democratic.

          As far as Alonso goes, if there is something wrong with the sport (hint: there is because we chatter about it all the time) then he is doing a service by voicing those problems at the cost of popular opinion. Good for him. I wish more people complained like they do in Egypt; it effects change! Change is good when it comes from the voices most effected by the struggle.

          1. How can you make a valid complaint about systems that haven’t been tried and tested yet?

            Egypt? Egypt had 30+ years of a government they came to hate. Proof positive it didn’t work for them.

            We haven’t had ONE race yet with the new rear wing system. How can anyone pass comment with full validity? Its just speculation, or it’s feeling world weary of the changes, or its something else. What is isn’t, is proven.

            Personally, I think Fernando has joined a team that fear they may not see the title again for some time.( Although I do think they have the right approach to building their car). The pressure is constantly on, the only way is down for them at the moment after their recent glory years.

      2. Him being held up by Petrov was his example of a faster car being held up by a considerably slower one.

        I’m a bit tired of this myth. The Ferrari may have had an overall better lap time at Abu Dhabi, but the Renault was faster in a straight line (in fact one of the fastest in a straight line due to their excellent implementation of the F-duct), which is where Alonso was trying to pass.

        1. I believe it was the gear ratio’s not the f-duct

        2. yes they had a brilliant f-duct, they made choice of running the car slightly with less wing at the rear to be faster on the straights and hence the gear ratios were a little taller. they made an gamble by opting that setup, hence i believe there was no car on that track which would have beaten them down the straight.

      3. Haha. Sorry Cacarella, I posted a response but I think its too long.. It’s been moderated :)

    2. .. Kamui and Hamilton will use the tools at hand and find ways.

      It should be interesting to watch if they should find themselves in close proximity to one another.

      I’m betting on at least 2 faux pas each for overtakes that don’t come off.

      1. I bet Kamui will finish the season with a minimum of 3 DNFs and Lewis with atleast 2 DNFs. Thanks to their aggressive overtaking skills added to moveable rear wing. :). NOM i do like both of them.

        1. If Hamilton would attempt overtaking Webber again, indeed he might have several DNF’s yes. But that threat hangs over every driver.

          Webber ran into him at least 3 times in 2010. Twice already in Australia.

      2. And i’d rather see that than have them sit behind the driver in front and then moan how hard over-taking is.

      3. Hamilton did overtake Kobayashi in Abu Dhabi.

    3. People tend to forget that Alonso is also a great racer. And he can also overtake people, like Hamilton does.

      No one can overtake a slower driver if there’s no room or the guy in front doesn’t make any mistake, and that was Vitaly that day. It happened to ALL drivers, and it’s the main problem with F1. Hence why this weird solutions appear.

      Why would Alonso find it hard? he’s a double champ, you know…

      1. Alonso himself said it would be hard. Ask him?

        Kamui and Lewis pulled more overtaking moves than anyone else last season, so you would expect them to be the ones most determined to take advantage of it.

        From my memory, Kamui especially made passing moves, where there just were not any available to any one else, he had no space and the drivers in front made few mistakes. It was a delight watching him drive last season.

        1. Most overtaking moves of Kamuis I can remember were either first lap (that went thoroughly wrong for him in the beginning of the season) or when he had fresh softer tyres at the end of the race (citing Clarkson ‘how hard can it be’) or at Japan where he I would say half his overtakings weren’t quite in line with drivers agreements how to overtae properly .. he launched himself in positions where he almost crashed into the other ones who did the right thing of not pulling into his car. Otherwise he would have another DNF to his name due to a crash.
          If you consider this the great art of overtaking you must also be a real fan of Sutils and Vettels.

          1. Name another person on the grid who can pull off brave and bold passing move with success and the regularity of Kamui?

            Or do his fans like him because he’s Japanesse? Did Brundle call him Kobiwasabi because he makes good Sushi?

            people love him because he’s got the guts to make those moves in a sport that people think doesn’t have much overtaking?

            Hamilton made more mistakes than Kamui overtaking last year, perhaps he’s rusty.

            Would you prefer a convoy?

            Sorry, but I’m glad the boy is in the sport and that he’s got the guts to try and succeed doing something many others just don’t know how to do.

            Agreed Vettel and Webber aren’t very good at overtaking, although they are fast. Sutil I just don’t pay attention to, so I can’t comment.

          2. Totally agree with you.
            I really don’t understand why Kamui is such hit among fans and people take his name with Lewis in tersm of ovetaking.
            In japan, I still attribute other drivers sensibilities not involving in kamekazi act with him. In Valencia, he was on fresh tyres when he made last second move on Buemi.
            He made far too many rookie mistakes in the first half of the season especialy in Montreal and Singapore.
            To me with an average car Sutil is a great overtaker, 40 overtakes (highest)in one season is no mean task.In my opinion, he is really underrated.

          3. he launched himself in positions where he almost crashed into the other ones

            …almost, but not quite. Yup. Just like all good overtaking moves. Just like it should be.

            Props to drivers like Kobayashi who drive the sport like it should be driven.

          4. Correction: Vettel and Webber are fine at overtaking, the problem lies in the fact that they don’t accept being passed without a destructive reaction. In other words, they aren’t very good at giving up position when it is lost.

          5. ‘Kobiwasabi,’ love it! In Brazil, aside from the remaining Massa support (and a tiny bit of love for Barrichello), the most popular drivers by far seem to be Lewis and Kamui. I imagine the same goes for other countries where some degree of neutrality is possible.

            Alonso is a brilliant driver but not in their league when it comes to overtaking. Still I guess Alonso’s point may be valid, it might not be enough for the fastest cars/drivers to get past each other on flapping rear wing + KERS alone. I suspect the opposite though, one team will add these up to make a big difference. And I have my suspicions which…

        2. Actually I think Keith showed overtaking statistics having Sutil on top of that table!

          1. Right..
            But source is different:


            It mainly attributes his position due to his poor Quali performance, but, Kamui also do not have great Quali record,but still Sutil is up 40-13

          2. They should remove the new teams from these overtaking statistics. It’s a bit daft to count overtakes on cars that are 2 to 3 seconds slower.

      2. he’s a double champ, you know…

        He was second 2007(equal points with Lewis) and 2010.

        1. He was third in 2007.

    4. Actually, I take it back. I don’t think he’s whinging I think its just the way he speaks. Perhaps I’m too quick to conclude to the negative where Ferrari is concerned.

      1. Whinging is when you keep going on about it.

        If there are overtaking problems, I wonder when the zone will be increased

        1. If I remember correctly, they built in an “evaluation point” after the first 3-4 races to see weather to shorten or increase the zone.

      2. Actualy the tone on the voice of the people of asturias and galicia sound melancholic (a bit like whinging).
        Alonso is quite straightforward on his comments. I think that day he was angry to himself for not being able to pass, but the tone…

        1. Maybe it’s the way it comes across in English when he’s speaking. Perhaps in his own language he’s very different.

          I’ve seen Jake do a shoot with him at Maranello and he was a different person. Much more in his element, relaxed, chilled out.. Easier to relate to.

          Perhaps he, like Robert and Kimi, just can’t stand the press and the politics and emotionally shut down.

          1. Mother language is an improtant thing.

            Indeed look at Kimi in this video

          2. Confirming my own comment:
            improtant = important

          3. Lol verstappen :)

          4. Awesome video by the way. Great to see those guys relaxed :)

          5. I can say that he speak with this tone even in spanish, he is just so direct and rude, but he’s not in F1 to make you laugh or to be polite, he’s just FA.
            And F1 is not a sport where you have to see overtakings. What you see is a race where the fastest arrives first, beginning from the pole position as there are qualification firstly.
            Being “friendly” and “overtakings” are Ecclestone needings for his business, wich doesn’t have anything to do races.
            I think Alonso’s personality is what F1 needs today against this foolish Bernie’s ideas.
            Vettel said yesterday that f1 going towards spectacle doesn’t like him and noone has thought he’s whinning or there’s a RB strategy to change the rules in their favour.

      3. Stop ‘whinging’ about it and start ‘whining’ about it. The cross between middle-english and modern technology is too much!

  5. Re FA1L. That’s classic :) wonder who’s got that number plate?

  6. The Last Pope
    15th February 2011, 0:44

    Alonso is still making excuses as to why he didn’t win the championship then. The race was “ruined” because of his loss? Yeah right. You and your team lost fair and square Alonso, Get over it.

    1. blablablablablablablablablablablablabla

    2. I didn’t even notice his use of the word “ruined.” That really is taking it a bit far. If he’d said his race was ruined that’s one thing, but to imply that the entire race was ruined because he was stuck behind Petrov? Please! For me it made the race.

      1. Man, you guys keep whining each time Alonso says something. Just get over it!

      2. Well, I suppose it is natural to care about your own race mostly, when racing. Sure, afterwards you can say that it has been a great season and all, and that you were very close to the WDC, but the personal goal wasn’t that, so sure, for Ferrari, the race was ruined.

        Also, for me personally, after the two Ferrari’s got stuck, and then Hamilton couldn’t really hang on to Vettel and got stuck behind Kubica as Alonso was behind Petrov, I did find the race rather ruined.

        It was both clear who would win it, and the WDC was fought as well. Only a problem for Vettel really could have changed anything. And RBR seemed to be over their unreliability by the end of the season.

        At the front of the race nothing really happened after, although we did initially see some nice tries by Alonso and Hamilton to get past. But it quickly became clear they would be unlikely to succeed.

        So Alonoso isn’t that far off, I think – even though for the race Kubica/Hamilton might have had more effect, Alonso getting stuck meant that the WDC also didn’t really offer anything of interest anymore. Good that there were still some people behind them racing to at least give us something to see.

        1. I don’t agree, using that reasoning Michael Schumacher ruined F1 for 5 seasons straight. That is of course nonsense.

      3. Maybe the rule’s objective is to favour an overtaking move when a race gets ruined by the impossibility of passing a much slower car, as happened to me with [Vitaly] Petrov in Abu Dhabi.

        An overtaking move by a driver. This implies that it should be “A driver’s race gets ruined.

  7. Alonso doubts more overtaking in 2011

    Oh no, Ferrari pit radio problems?

      1. Haha! But I’m sick of this nonsense about overtaking. There was just the right amount of it last year and I don’t see why everyone wants it to be like NASCAR. Overtaking in F1 is a thing of beauty which we all marvel at – and that’s how it should be.

        1. Yep. Agree. What’s the point of Alonso overtaking Schumacher around the outside of 130R if he can just wait until the straight and adjust his rear wing.

          Hate these gimmicks, but that’s society today I’m afraid.

          1. Everyone has praised 2010 as one of the best seasons ever (I thought it was just normal) but we still feel the urge to change everything… Besides, overtaking by virtues of a greater top speed is probably the least exciting way to overtake. I agree with you about the 130R scenario. Why try a risky manoeuvre when you can press a button and zoom past? Why bother overtaking when you can simply pass on the straight? Oh well, at least we’ve got Kobayashi to keep us sane, hey? :P

          2. Guys, you are judge jury and executioner and the crimes not been committed yet.

            let 2011 happen then judge.. How’s that for a balanced opinion? :)

          3. @Damonsmedley –

            Everyone has praised 2010 as one of the best seasons ever (I thought it was just normal)

            Me too!

        2. I suppose that makes it good news if the drivers state, that getting past a backmarker or out of place car will be easier (at least it helps against having to wave blue flags) but not too much of a difference between the best. It fits with Sam Michael stating the 600m zone is to short to massively help overtaking.

          I am sure some will use it to get just that little bit extra to have a go anyhow. And keeping a faster car behind will only get more recognition for the driver doing it.

        3. Overtaking should be an art. Not a science, nor a charity.

          1. And least of all by company order!

          2. Give that man a COTD! Beautifully put.

  8. His sitting behind somebody he can’t overake for laps on end incident was just his upcomance. He spend the number of laps behind Petrov that he should have spent behind Massa in GERMANY!

  9. Stick it down the inside you big ponce. If you’re chasing a WDC and can’t get past a slower car in front of you then you don’t deserve the WDC. It’s fairly rudimentary really.

    I mean, I don’t admire what Schumacher did to win but I do respect him for doing it.

    Wish Alonso would shut up about it. A real racer would have found a way past Petrov, a rookie who wasn’t even a championship rival, or crashed/run wide/blown an engine trying.

    1. Alonso.hater.com

      “We attack anything he says, even if it makes absolute sense”

      1. It doesn’t make sense. The race wasn’t ruined.

        1. But it sure was the best example of where it would have helped. Everyone remembers that for one and the difference would have been enough.

          What’s against Alonso giving his view of the rear wing thing after testing? It is a first hand insight into what is going on and what to expect.

          And it fits pretty much what commenters (including Sam Michael of Williams) said, after the FIA announced going for a 600m zone, as well as the stated target, to help getting close not as a “push to pass” thing.

      2. There’s two problems with what he said. One the arrogance of assuming the entire world thought the race ruined because he couldn’t get past. Second he’d have had precisely the same problem behind Kubica, but I very much doubt he would have shown anything like the disrespect he displayed for Petrov, and continutes to show here, if he’d been stuck behind him.

        1. Or maybe what he meant was “my race was ruined”.

          I doubt the entertainment value of a race figures very highly in Alonso’s thinking. We’re only talking about one short word of difference in something that’s been said by a non-native speaker of English.

          Let’s not hang, draw and quarter him based on it.

          1. Fair enough Keith! It’s a new season ready to start and everything, I’m sure Alonso being Alonso, and Ferrari being Ferrari, there will be plenty of opportunities later in the year :)

            Seriously, my only real gripe about last year – Bahrain and Hockenhem excepted – was the over-cautiousness of some of the frontrunners, including Alonso, to chase for the win in the final 5 or 6 races of the season. Really hope that this year Alonso will push that little bit more – because that’s what he needs to win in what’s now a highly competitive group of top teams and drivers.

    2. A real racer would have found a way past Petrov, a rookie who wasn’t even a championship rival, or…run wide…trying.

      Alonso did – several times.

      1. As I keep saying, there is too much dependence on aerodynamics. It’s like a nuclear bomb, where science has advanced it so far that we are now in an undesirable situation.

        1. Ad what situation would you have us in?

      2. Then either Petrov is the next Prost or Alonso was doing it wrong, because if you outbrake yourself properly on the inside of your target I’m not sure how you can run wide and they can make the corner.

        I dont hate anyone, I just wish people would criticise the track. But then it’s owned by people the teams don’t want to offend sk we’re backin PR mode…

      3. I respect Alonso for his driving talent – he is very good. But when he don’t get past Petrov and after the race signals his anger by waving a fist at Petrov, he is way out of line – that is non-sporting conduct. Alonso’s opinion, as I understood it, was that other drivers shouldn’t interfere with the battle for WDC, and accordingly Petrov and so on, should make it easy for him to overtake.
        His thinking is so selfish, it can hardly be done better by a child, 5 years of age. What if it had been the other way around and Petrov and Kubica had pulled over for Vettel?
        But I’m sure LDM and Alonso are perfectly matched and Alonso will stay with Ferrari for many years and they will also be successful sooner or later. I hope later.

    3. I’m with you on this… people who want to win, those who think 2nd place is as good as 10th, will find a way to get the position. As many have said, those that passed people in 10′ did so by sticking a wheel in.

      The Spaniard should realize that he’s held up his fair share of drivers I’m sure as well. I remember a particularly interesting race in 06′ in San Marino where the G.reatest O.f A.ll T.ime got stuck behind the whinging spaniard… Sooo disappointed that MSC didn’t get around him. But, it was a good race I suppose.

      1. I’m sure you mean 2005. In 2006 Michael beat Alonso to win.

    4. You forget the principal thing about Formula 1. Cars.

  10. Some says that we will have artificial overtaking some say things won’t be that much a different not sure who is right & who is wrong.

    Good to hear about Kubica & the Delhi track have impressed Whiting.

  11. I’m sorry buy alosno couldn’t overtake inferior petrov for a good 40 laps or so. I don’t wanna sound pro hamilton but at lest he would have made some massive lunge to get past.

    1. Lewis couldn’t overtake Kubica with a car that had a higher top speed and was quicker around the track than the Ferrari.

      Quit using double standards, it removes all your credibility.

      1. The difference was Hamilton didn’t the outcome of a WDC on the line.

        *credibility removed*

      2. Are you sure?, the Renaults had the top speed for most of the weekend.

        1. BTW that is defending both Alonso and Hamilton. The two best drivers couldn’t over take the same manufacture… don’t need to say more than the Renaults was just to quick out of the corners and along the straight

          1. The difference being Lewis was fighting one of the elite drivers of F1 and Fernando was fighting a rookie.

            Apart from the end of the two straights, Alonso did not try anything to outsmart his inexperienced competitor.

      3. sorry I was quite drunk then!

        anyway, think back to monza 2007 HAM on RAI. that was impressive and I really can’t see alonso pulling that sort of move, no doubt he’s an amazing driver of course!

        1. If you think that race was beautifull… I just saw two crazy drivers, nervous and erratic, making me laugh.
          Sure Alonso wouldn’t be so desperate, but if you like that… then Alonso is not your driver.

        2. Raikonnen was on a one stop strategy, and wasn’t on fresh tyres like Hamilton was. He was also catching a little nap time on the straight, which is something that Petrov didn’t do in Abu Dhabi. Alonso has pulled a lot of great overtaking moves as well, just watch the Hungarian GP 2006 and Suzuka 2005 to refresh your memory.

  12. Can someone help me with the Sauber article. Why would anybody want to sponsor an F1 team without getting any publicity for it? I was under the impression that F1 was one of the best platforms for global exposure.

    But it’s interesting that most of the current “members” of Sauber Club One are Swiss.

    1. So those people get the best seats in the house – the garage.

    2. HounslowBusGarage
      15th February 2011, 6:58

      I wonder if it’s a stupid method for all the Board Members to get invited into the Sauber hospitality place without having to reveal to the shareholders how much they are spending. Just gets accounted for as ‘publicity’.

      1. Sounds like that is exactly the deal. Even more no angry customers asking for price cuts and better quality now the company can afford sponsoring an F1 team

        1. Nor the employees seeing it as a “so then you can improve our wages now again after the cuts thanks to the crisis last years, right?”.

          The article also mentions the lack of green credentials. In summary, it does indeed read as a way of getting into the millionaires club that is an F1 paddock without having to answer questions about it.

          1. So thats a bit like … JPS profiting from the Renault livery actually!

    3. I think that’s like the tale of the dress od the king , that invisible dress…

  13. There is a lot going on in these posts! Someone said that Bahrain is back to its original configuration. Can someone please confirm that as being fact.

    1. I can.
      Scroll down to the images of the various layouts and read the info on the “Grand Prix Circuit”. It says:
      ‘Used in F1 from 2004–2009, and [b][u]from 2011 onwards.[/u][/b]’

      1. Damn, I didn’t know that BBCode doesn’t work here. :(

        1. Without spaces.
          And there are the buttons on top of the area you write your comment in, so it does it for you. In the Forum it doesn’t.

          1. They disappeared! So, instead of B use STRONG, instead of U use EM.

          2. Sorry, don’t know what’s happening to me. EM is for Italics, I don’t think there’s one for underlined.

    2. There is a lot going on in these posts! Someone said that Bahrain is back to its original configuration. Can someone please confirm that as being fact.

      Yes, see:

      Bahrain reverts to original layout for 2011

      2011 F1 calendar

  14. I hope Alonso is wrong.
    Frankly, it’s almost mandatory now to improve overtaking. Overall show offered by F1 races is getting worse and worse since i first started following the sport back in 1997.
    It has reached a point when i don’t care if overtaking gets artificial (which i don’t think it’ll be the case, anyway). Something’s got to change dramatically, then you can fine-tune it.

    1. worse and worse

      Although I have a soft spot for the Mika vs Michael era, I think it’s widely believed that 2010 was an absolutely fantastic year.

      So to be honest, I think your being over dramatic.

      There’s only two things that need doing I think, for F1. A budget cap, and I’m not saying 60mil, maybe 120 at first, work our way down slowly. That, and a reduction of aerodynamics. And that’s coming in 2013.

    2. Frankly I disagree. I think the overall show has become better and better. I think, even though I like to critise Ferrari International Assistance, that they have done a good job generally over the years to bring the competition closer together. (I didn’t like the season of no tyre changes – It almost killed several drivers).
      We have had very exiting seasons with high tension. If they increase the number of overtakings to much or make it too easy, it is no longer so impressive to watch. Like if You had 15 goals in a soccer match instead of 0 to 4 normally. But lets see what the new rules will bring of action before we condemn it. I hope for a great season.

      1. I knew it would be better if i stated that clearly. =)

        I totally agree that *competition* has been absolutely outstanding most of the seasons, particularly in 2010.
        And of course, if you account tight championship runnings for the most part of the show, then of course overall show has been improving so far for you.
        But tight championship runnings could happen even with 18-20 boring races. Personally, i account what *single races* could offer for the most part of the overall show. And the vast majority of the races (with a few notable exception, unfortunately mostly due to random, unpredictable and external factors) in the past 14 years have shown little or no overtaking. Also, if you take away overtaking which took place between cars with major performance gaps, which quite frankly you watch and then immediately forget, too few things worth to remember remain.
        I can totally understand the “if it’s harder, it’s better when it happens” argument. But that would be the case anyway. I just want the “harder” part of this argument be more up to the driver than about the structural deficiencies in the technical regulations the new 2011 rules are trying to fix. I just think that F1 needs to set the bar a little lower and then let the drivers re-define what’s harder, what’s easier, and what’s what in a context of more eventful races.

        I often happen to watch F1 with friends and family who are not as fond of motorsport as i am. They’re not me, who can amuse himself trying to found out if that Jenson Button saving-tires race strategy will eventually work. Most of the time they’re just watching because they have nothing else better to do. Most of the times they watch only half the race, when pretty much everything it’s sorted out, they *know from experience* overtaking is unlikely and they just lose interest.
        Then something like Canada 2010 happens, and i could barely found room on the sofa.

        I agree completely with Mike on those two things, budget caps and especially aero reduction.

  15. Let it go Fernando. Jeez.

    1. +1. that is the problem with him, he can be like a little kid off the track.

      1. Too harsh. He’s not been at all bad! He was probably just using his Abu Dhabi scenario as an example, as I’m sure (well, it would be for me) it would have been the first thing he thought of when referring to following another F1 car for a prolonged period.

  16. Jon Barnard (@)
    15th February 2011, 8:24

    Overtaking should be a bit easier this season and that will make the racing a lot more exciting. This season is going to be really good with 5 world champions on the grid and hopefully a close race for the title. Bring on Bahrain 13th March!

    1. I just hope the teams won’t be as conservative as they were last year. It pretty much took the fun out of the first race, together with FOM not showing us the action that did occur.

      1. It has been posted more here, but if all 21 overtaking moves taking place in Bahrain had been shown, we would have rated the races probably otherwise.

        Still it wouldn’t have been a top notch race, but at least more fun to watch

        1. Exactly. Here’s to hoping Bernie kicks his producers in the hinds to do a better job this year and actually make a good race view out of the material available

  17. well, Alonso found difficult to overtake Petrov mainly because of the layout of Abu Dhabi circuit. In the previous race, in Brazil, he was able to overtake Hulkenberg quite immediately, while Hamilton had to stay behind for a very long time.
    I don’t mean Hamilton is weaker than Alonso, but I just wanna point out that sometimes even if you’re a talented driver you may find very hard to overtake a much slower car.

    1. Has anyone still got the stats, I seem to remember the Renaults being in the top 2 – 3 through the speed traps (and in one of the sessions fastest), if I remember correctly no wonder that Hamilton and Alonso couldn’t overtake.

    2. remember monaco as well!

    3. And that might be exactly where the adjustabler rear wing kicks in to help get past an on with the race!

  18. Keith, you’re doing an amazing job and I hope things like this: http://www.theracedriver.com/2011/02/episode-7-questions-for-mclarens-phil-prew-and-f1-fanatics-keith-collantine/#
    will help you with recognition, getting adds and being able to continue with your great work.

  19. I’m starting to wonder if I’ve missed something as there seems to be a lot of anger in the comments today. Perhaps this is supposed to be an F1 Fanatic Day of Rage against Fernando Alonso.

    1. Me too. He gives an opinion based on his personal experience and people seem to see that as whinging and moaning…

      Ok so there are many people who dislike Alonso, but disliking someone is no basis for dismissing their opinions, especially in a case like this where I happen to think Fernando is acually making a valid point. I do hope he’s wrong though..

      1. I think people are easily jumping to the conclusion that he’s moaning given that he mentions Petrov and he has this reputation of being a bit negative. I don’t think he is being like that at all in this example and I’ve never particularly felt that Alonso is a “whinger”.

        Happy birthday Tom, Tim, MNS and East Londoner!

  20. I…actually may be with Alonso on this one, giving him the benefit of the doubt as to language choice, intended intonation, etc.

    Some of you guys seem to be missing the point. We don’t want NASCAR-style passing and re-passing; we want an end to the ridiculous situation where a clearly faster car can’t overtake because of the aerodynamic wake. Yes, Petrov kept ahead of Alonso thanks to his gear ratios, but also because the cars can’t follow each other through the preceding corners.

    Anyway, if we had DRS and KERS last year, Alonso would have passed Petrov, but then Hamilton would have passed Sutil in Malaysia, Alonso himself in Australia (or even Kubica and not ruined his tyres following him), or any number of other scenarios that probably would still have left Alonso without the 2010 WDC.

    1. This is my old point but it’s gotta be said : how can we possibly judge something with validity, when we have not even seen ONE race with it?

      Everyone is handing out expert opinions on DRS, or ARW or your favourite acronym, and no one, but no one, has seen a proper race yet, let alone a full season.

      1. Hare: You are very right – lets see the racing under these rules, and after a few races we can evaluate…

    2. It’s not FA language choice or intended intonation, It’s just your ear. You hear things that he’s not saying.

      1. Christ on a bike, I’m actually agreeing with the guy for once and I’m being accused of twisting his words?

        And I worry about being a fanboy sometimes…

        1. Unless you meant something else, apologies if so.

        2. Icthyes you don’t have to worry I can’t ever once recall you being a ‘fanboy’ in your comments. Everyone has their own favourites but your comments are always explained and balanced I feel :)

          1. Thanks Steph :)

  21. I meant to do this sooner but have had a backlog of stuff to clear after getting back to Jerez.

    Anyway, better late than never, the ‘get well Robert’ message is now on the F1 Fanatic logo.

    1. I just noticed that, very nice touch Keith, bless you if you’re a religious man and a pint down the local if you’re not ;-)

      1. There’s a Holy Spirit joke there somewhere ;)

        1. I’m a pagan, I pray to the spirits of the cold Rocky Mountains and the oaks of Kentucky ;)

    2. Ah sweet! Good work :)

    3. Nice touch.

    4. HounslowBusGarage
      15th February 2011, 11:09

      I saw that and thought the site had been hacked until I read ‘ROBERT’ at the end!
      Then the penny dropped . . . Well done Keith.

    5. Nice touch Keith.

  22. Dan_the_McLaren_fan
    15th February 2011, 10:50

    Well, if I want to be mean, I would say that if you are not a good overtaker, the adjustable rear wing and the KERS won’t really help you to overtake more.

    But, I personaly think the overtaking issue is more a problem of circuit design than a problem of car design, so changing the car to help overtaking won’t solve the problem. It’s more a work-around than a solution in my opinion.

    1. So you actually pretty much agree with Alonso. The rear wing will not change to much by itself!
      And that from a McLaren fan, must give Fernando a warm feeling inside ;-)

    2. Which doesn’t really explain why all the other series managed to overtake with relative ease at the same circuit!

      I know that If you took the wings off the cars, overtaking would then become perhaps too easy at these so-called ‘poorly designed’ circuits.

  23. Alonso should really start thing about building a bridge and getting over it…. -__-

    1. Well if it’s true, of course he’d want the worse driver to replace him ;)

    2. This with the same journalistic integrity of the so called “shortlist” that Boullier was supposed to have given? remember how Boullier simply answered “yes and some more” to a reporter asking Bouiller if he was considering Senna, Liuzzi and Heidfeld.

      Rumours are funny to read, but it seems some reporters have a hard time distinguishing between rumours and facts. Which in turn means that they will put rumours down as facts.

      At least it gives us an insight in which sites/blogs we can actually trust and which not.

  24. The Drag Reduction System or whatever it’s called was always going to benefit the mid-field teams more than the front-runners so those comments from Alonso aren’t surprising.

  25. passing shoudn’t be made ‘easier’ it should just be made more possible.

    i actually hope the 2011 gimmick rules fail because i believe that if the arw, kers and to a lesser extent the high wear tyres work as intended they will not just make passing simply more possible but also too easy.

    i also think the effect of aero is somewhat overstated, yes its an issue but the biggest problem which hinders passing in most cases is the really short braking zones.

    i say that as if you go back, even to the 70’s you hear drivers say they hit the dirty/turbulant air generated by a car infront when there about 1 second behind. you hear that same figure in the late 80s/early 90s and the 1 second behind figure is also what drivers describe today.

  26. How can anyone support Alonso ? He seems like such a dull character compared to more charismatic drivers. He’s already gathering the excuses before the first race has even started. As far as he’s concerned, Petrov prevented him unfairly from being WC last year as the title was his by right. He needs to be more humble and take a few risks, although when he does that it usually ends up in tears (Canada 2007?).

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