F1 Fanatic round-up: 7/3/2010

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Just one week to go to the first Grand Prix of 2010! Here’s today’s round-up:

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Massa says new teams bad for F1 (Autosport)

“I hope they won’t be a danger. There are six/seven teams one second apart while those teams are four seconds behind. It’s not good for the sport and not good for them: it’s like two different series. They’ll suffer. And we’ll suffer too, when we have them in front of us during qualifying.”

Comment of the day

TheRoswelite has concerns about the depth of quality in the F1 field this year:

In fact I have serious apprehensions about the strength of this years field. I rate Red Bull, Ferrari and McLaren as the top group, with M-Benz floating below them and the middle group.

My concern is that we actually end up with, as in decades past, a small group of front teams and then a??chasm??.to the other guys, and not just the new teams.

If you make a list of teams that may be in danger of either financial or performance meltdown you have the new guys plus?? Renault and Sauber. If it works out that way I would hope that arrangements are made for the greater sharing of F1 generated monies. Are you listening Bernie? Doubtful.

Happy birthday!

No F1 Fanatic birthdays today. If you want a birthday shout-out tell us when yours is by emailling me, using Twitter or adding to the list here.

On this day in F1

Sir Jack Brabham scored his final Grand Prix win on this day 40 years ago at Kyalami. He should have won the Monaco Grand prix two months later, but crashed on the last lap allowing Jochen Rindt to win.

Brabham won the world title in 1959, 1960 and 1966 and is the oldest living world champion. Now 83, he is expected to be at the gathering of world champions to mark the 60th anniversary of the world championship at Bahrain next week.

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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  • 138 comments on “F1 Fanatic round-up: 7/3/2010”

    1. good night, for me it’s late and I’m off to sleep :p

    2. Did Massa really say that, or is it more horses**t from the Ferrari PR department?

      Read this instead, Brundle’s back:
      Michael Schumacher is back to make things interesting (Martin Brundle)

      1. That does indeed seem worthy of questioning lately, but the reality is that the backmarkers are driving around at GP2 speeds and there are a lot more than just Jordan circa 2004,2005 clogging up the track. Safety this year needs to be a huge concern with all those bodies on track. I would hope that, without sounding Ferrari elitist, they will pull any car that is more than 3 seconds off the pace at the final practice session. Nascar practices this essentially, but by allowing many teams to show up to run, and it ensures that the top cars aren’t put in dangerous passing situations lap after lap with so many on the field.

        1. To put Ferrari’s recent remarks into some kind of historical context. I recently watched a copy of the 1995 San Marino Grand Prix. In that race Forti were around 8 seconds a lap off the pace. The 4 seconds Virgin and Lotus are claiming to be off the pace would have been around the midfield in that race – a good few laps down at the finish, but with attrition perhaps in the top 10. In terms of F1 history – even relatively recent F1 history – 4 seconds per lap just isn’t that much. It’s certainly not enough to be unsafe.

          Also during that race, Murray Walker remarked that BBC’s Steve Rider, flying out to the circuit from the UK on the Saturday night, brought in his hand luggage some spare parts for the Simtek team! That’s what F1 is all about – guys who love to race, and will race at any cost, even if they have to enlist the help of a friendly journalist to do so! It’s not about the massive corporate monoliths that have dominated for the last decade or so. With these new teams F1 is going some way back to its roots, and that cannot be a bad thing.

          1. I was going to post a long reply in this regard, but Red Andy hit the nail on the head, so I won’t bother!

            All I will say is that, in my experience of watching F1, the difference in outright pace from first place to last place that we saw last year, which was often only 1.5 – 2 seconds in free practice, is unprecedented. The fact that some teams may be 4 seconds off the pace IS NOT A BAD THING. It’s not going to ruin the sport, and it will definitely not be unsafe.

            Back in the days when Nige was getting pole by a full second, no one ever said it was dangerous to have Fondmetal’s trundling round the track well off the pace, and it’s not going to be dangerous to have HRT, Lotus and Virgin circulating 4 seconds off the pace. If accidents do happen when the leaders try to lap slower cars it will be down to poor driving (from either the rookie or the leader) or poor marshalling.

        2. Safety this year needs to be a huge concern with all those bodies on track.

          There are four more cars on the track. 24 instead of 20. F1 tracks are typically five kilometres long. It’s not a problem.

          Nor is the difference in speeds. As other people have said we’ve had race with cars six or seven seconds off the pace and more, and it wasn’t a problem then either.

          Plus I suspect with the technical rules being so much tighter than they once were, the new teams will improve quite quickly.

    3. I agree with Tom. Ferrari seems to have swallowed some pills recently that enable them to talk a lot of nonsense quite freely. Starting from my favourite quote from Alonso “I’ve never had any problems with my teammates”, to Ferrari’s rant, which did have some points in it, not forgetting Alonso’s ‘put your money on me now’ comment during testing, only to look more average the week after.

      If there something in the water over there? What’s up with all the nonsense.

    4. Again the whining about backmarkers from Ferrari. What with these guys and their big heads?

      Ferrari really is the last team that should complain about putting poor drivers driving slowly on track.

      The disgraceful performance they put up with Badoer was just that … an utter disgrace. They disgraced not only themselves but also the sport as a whole.

      They should learn to be very quiet and stop drawing attention to themselves when the subject of backmarkers comes up.

      Maybe they better try whispering to horses instead …

      1. Well said! Even Ferrari had to start from somewhere. With all their mouthing off you would think they just want a grid to themselves!!

        I also dont agree with comment of the day…..has he seen testing?! Its so close i would like him to say exactly who the small group of front teams are because the rest of the paddock dont know!!

    5. Remember, Massa made a similar statement about Jaime Alguesuari before the Hungarian Grand Prix, and then was injured by (though not because of) Barrichello, the opposite in characteristics of the danger Massa painted Alguesuari to be. You think he would have learned things aren’t so simple?

      If this were not the first time, I would say this was very uncharacteristic of Massa. He seems to have been swallowed up by the current prevailing mindset at Ferrari, trying to play mindgames but in the process telling us more about the commenter than what us being commented on. Hamilton’s “monkeys at the back” was one thing, these kinds of comments are a step further. Why so obsessed, Ferrari? Perhaps ypu’re scared of what the new teams represent in competition with you that has nothing to do with their current projected track performance…

      1. It’s because no one takes them to acount for what they’re saying. Hamiltons comments led to a bit of a storm an he learned that certain kinds of comments, especially those that disparge fellow competitors to the point of being patronising makes people dislike you. Ferrari get away with it so instead of the occasional deflation of heads that occurs in people like Hamilton, who can be very arrogant, they just get worse an gain an even more inflated set of ego’s.

        Hopefully Massa takes out a newbie at somepoint and has to apologise for ruining his race, that’ll teach him humility.

        1. He’s Brazilian, he might punch him instead. ^^

          Poor Eddie… and he didn’t even take one out!

        2. Thing is, Massa has already hit (though not taken out) a newbie – Bourdais at Fuji 08, for which Bourdais got a penalty in the last of those weird decisions which kept the championship as alive as possible until the last race.

          Yes, Hamilton can be and has been arrogant, but for every ouburst he’s made I’ve seen him be a good guy 20 times over (even at the time, people – more like early haters – were already calling Hamilton arrogant, and yet many others were saying how uncharacteristic the “monkeys” comment was). Every F1 driver has to have some arrogance (confidence inflated by success, in most cases, skewed as arrogance by biased detractors); they wouldn’t be there without it, the trick is keeping a lid on it and learning respect. Ever since Mika Hakkinen, you could accuse every F1 WDC of arrogance or obnoxiousness. Look at Lewis last year; at the first races he was complaining about the car, then made up for it for always attributing his successes to the hard work of the team. Massa, on the other hand, doesn’t seem to have learned at all. I lost a lot of respect for him when he talked about Spa 08 as if he won it without being gifted, then started to like him again after his supreme sportsmanshipbafter losing the WDC, but then he’s fallen back into arrogance, with the Alguesuari comments, his opening shots in the Alonso mindgames (he “would have” won the WDC if Renault – and by implication, Alonso – hadn’t cheated in Singapore, forgetting that maybe Hamilton’s bizarre conduct at Fuji and McLaren’s strategy in Brazil would have probably differed had Massa won in Singapore), and now these comments about backmarkers again.

          The difference between the two, I’d say, is that Hamilton has grown up and out of being a cocksure kid, whilst still having the faults of the most talented F1 drivers, and from here it remains to be seen which way he will go. Massa, as you say, simply seems to have grown into “the Ferrari way”, which doesn’t suit him at all, because otherwise he’s very likeable.

          1. I think Massa is truly arrogant though. He thinks everybody should just get out of his way. He has lots of these “why didn’t you get out of my way?” accidents.

            He rammed Bourdais while still having plenty of room when Bourdais was coming out of the pit.

            He blamed Sutil for not braking and letting Massa go ahead when Ferrari made a mistake and Massa was released too early in the European race.

            Maybe most famous was when he drove straight through Coulthard which elicited one of the best ever F1 quotes from Coulthard.

      2. Did you go to or watch the Spa Francorchamps race? It’s going to be very dangerous for 2 reasons. 1. Loads of rookies 2. Their cars are way way too slow. It was a shame for me to travel half way around the world to see Button and Lewis out after half a lap; fortunately no one was hurt.
        I understand the Ferrari hate, but that is actually a fair comment. This isn’t karting. People die here. 4 seconds is simply too much pace. They can practice and improve their cars at each weekend until they improve to within a reasonable gap.

        1. well then maybe the problem with f1 is not the competitors, but the rules that the new competitors have to comply with. So the problem is not how slow the slow cars are but how they will struggle to make thier cars faster and get them up to speed.

          i.e. no testing, limited wind tunnel time.

          the FIA should have allowed the new teams all of last year to test (as they could not participate at races) unlimited testing time for teams not competing in the current year. insted of having limited testing time on specific days

          1. I’d agree with that. The new teams should be allowed some in season testing for the first quarter of races.

    6. well massa has a point. there will be 2 cars that having been tested. full to the neck with fuel racing .if thats not danger whats is.. slow teams is not what most people wnt to see …forza ferrari massa for the championship ,,i love the ferrari bashers..

      ps hope young senna has a safe season

      1. Jarred Walmsley
        7th March 2010, 2:49

        I’m assuming you mean two cars that have not been tested in the form of HRT, as both Virgins and Lotuses have been tested?

      2. They will have had safety tests, it’s not like they’re going to explode on impact (at least I hope not). Something like Glock’s front wing episode would be dangerous during a race, but these things happen.

        Massa isn’t concerned about the danger, he’s worried he’ll get held up in qualifying. It’s not like that didn’t happen last year. In the end it’s down to the teams to get their timing right, if they’re running two seconds behind a new team on their out lap then that’s their own fault.

        1. “Something like Glock’s front wing episode would be dangerous during a race, but these things happen”

          Really? Oops, I didn’t realize that the wing needed to be made to F1 level downforce specs. I’ll make it better next time. Sorry about your face.
          Not cool. Not cool at all.

    7. We Want Turbo's
      7th March 2010, 1:38

      Is Massa quick to forget its not so long back his own car was 2 seconds off the pace and did Alonso not get his F1 break at Minardi? Its always been the nature of the sport to have people at the back off the pace.

      1. Spot on. Lets see how they are at the end of the season. The poor teams wont survive if they really are that back. Plus it’s more entertaining for us to watch Massa behind a Virgin… in a Manor of speaking.

        1. Jarred Walmsley
          7th March 2010, 2:52

          That really is awful, almost as bad as my dads jokes

        2. That is a load of Campos(t)

        3. Nice one. Nothing so good with my morning coffee as good cheesy jokes.

      2. Remember how slow 2 seconds off the pace was? Now double it! Danger Danger Danger Will Robinson!

    8. I guess that bump on the head has caused Massa to forget that sometimes it’s the fastest cars with that can be the most dangerous, not the slowest.

      1. I think he’s saying it’s the speed “difference”

    9. You know what would also have been bad for F1? only having 8 teams.
      Give the new teams a break, its especially disappointing to hear it from people who have come through the Minardi’s etc to be saying this. They weren’t complaining about teams being multiple seconds behind then, were they?

      1. Yep, I agree. If not for the new teams we’d be faced with 16-car grids. Or 24-car grids with each team running three cars. Neither option would be particularly desireable.

        As I’ve said before, it’s not so long ago that Super Aguri were regularly four or five seconds off the pace. Like SA the new teams will build on their slow start to catch up with the other teams in good time.

        1. I’d rather we had 24 from 8 teams than 16 from 8 teams, but having more teams to fill the 24 can only be better.

        2. I guarantee if we have eight three-car teams, the year after that we’ll have six three-car teams.

          Pretty soon four four-car teams. And so on. It’s a slippery slope.

          1. That is a solid point Keith. Why would I want to see another car on the grid from the same team when we already have problems with “team orders” even though they aren’t supposed to exist!
            I would rather there be 1 car from each team than 3. At least then there would be no team orders and it would also cut costs down for everyone.

    10. Anyone in favour of either one of the Ferraris finishing behind a new team’s car?

      The roof would quite literally blow off the Ferrari factory…

      1. Ned Flanders
        7th March 2010, 10:23

        Haha that would be funny! Can’t see it happening anytime soon I’m afraid

        1. after 3 punctures the top 4 teams would probably still be infront of the new guys, but heres hoping they have a good season atleast.

        2. Well, the only thing it needs is for Ferrari to really botch up their qualifying strategy again, like they did several times last year.

          Add a puncture or small incident at the start, and were there.

          Although Ferrari would blame the new teams/drivers for that anyway

    11. Prisoner Monkeys
      7th March 2010, 3:21

      Dear Felipe,

      If you cannot lap a car that you expect to be four seconds a lap slower than you when you only need to be going two seconds a lap faster than another car in order to be able to pass them, what are you doing in Formula 1?

      No, forget Formula 1 … what are you doing in motorsport?

    12. Enzo Ferrari’s level of notoriety was legitimate as it was the result of his hard-work and aptitude ( as the great don had said himself ). Ferrari sold cars so that he could race . Racing was his passion . Sadly it seems that the passion is all but gone . Ferrari now races so that it can sell its cars .

      Ferrari shut up and race !!!!!!!!!!!!

    13. Does anyone know what the lap record for a GP2 car around the Circuit de Catalunya is?

      With a the top F1 teams lapping the circuit in around 1.20 and the new teams around 1.25-1.26, its made me think how much faster are the new teams compared to a GP2 car?

      It would be embarasing for them if they are slower around a circuit than a GP2 car during a race weekend.

      1. According to Dallara (who built the HRT car and GP2 cars), the new teams were a little over 1 second faster around Catalunya than a GP2 car.

        Dallara claims the HRT car will be 2 seconds faster than a GP2 car, so in other words a further second in front of Virgin and Lotus.

        1. just shows how watered down f1 is at the moment, with race feul some f1 cars may be slower than gp2 cars!

          “Pinacle of motersport” …. only just!!

          bring back the V10’s, f1 would be more apealing if it had that huge draw card back

          1. a brand new car, designed and built from scratch. Yes they might ‘only’ be a little quicker now, but this is the speed of the cars straight out of the box, pre-development. Once the development programmes start producing results they willbe much quicker than a GP2 car.

            And really, the V10/V12 is not that much of a drawcard. There’s very little difference to anyone, even lifelong fans. Its just not that big of a deal what engine type they are using. Back in the 80’s we were seeing small capacity turbos – some people’s favourite period in F1. The engine type doesn’t matter.

          2. Then you are comparing the slowest laps of the slowest F1 car to the fastest lap of the fastest GP2 car in qualifying. That’s not really a fair comparison.

            BTW In 2013 they will probably have V4’s.

    14. Well, i see a lot of guys here against Ferrari and i am a Ferrari fan, so i have to say the following:
      Ferrari is and will be the best team in F1, history shows us that;
      Without Ferrari, F1 will dissapear in 2-3 years, that is the reason, why so may people around the world and not just in the UK pay to see a race;
      Being Patriotic is not to support one or 2 drivers, but being faithful to a team, no matter what;
      Ferrari is not affraid of competing against strong teams like MacLaren; RedBull or Mercedes, the comments from Massa are just to warn people that this year a lot of decisions will be made to let pass this driver or not on the race track because of engine suppliers and agreements made outside the track.
      Guys F1 is racing, so let´s not judge anyone even before racing really started!

      1. Speedy,

        What does Ferrari’s history have to de with their constant whining about how slow the new teams will be?

        “a lot of decisions will be made to let pass this driver or not on the race track because of engine suppliers and agreements made outside the track.” — The new teams are Cosworth powered…

        “Guys F1 is racing, so let´s not judge anyone even before racing really started!” — Shouldn’t that be a comment for Ferrari to ponder?

      2. Ned Flanders
        7th March 2010, 10:22

        “the comments from Massa are just to warn people”

        But they’re not! This is just another attack on new teams entering a sport Ferrari sees as its own, hidden behind a facade of a safety issue. Presumably Ferrari wanted Massa to support their cause because they think if poor Felipe raises an issue of driver safety we’ll all have to agree with it

        1. “because they think if poor Felipe raises an issue of driver safety we’ll all have to agree with it”

          … surely, Ned, you wouldn’t suspect an F1 team of such cynicism, would you?

          1. Ned Flanders
            7th March 2010, 11:18

            None of the Ferrari PR department ideas’s would surprise me these days…

        2. Spot on, Ned.

        3. Ned, that very well may be the case with Ferrari’s current leadership… Ferrari is going through a phase and hating the history because of the last decade is a bit… daft. They didn’t win for a long time and stayed which kept the sport running.
          Regardless of motivation, I think we should be concerned. It’s easy to say “shut up and race” when your life isn’t on the line. I’m not saying things don’t randomly happen (see Massa’s Face), but nobody saw that coming. If we knew the spring was coming free on track we would stop Barrichello and he would gladly rather have done that than hurt Massa. We know these teams are under-tested and under pace for F1 racing. I’m not saying definitely pull them at Bahrain, but lets not rule it out after seeing their best at Saturday practice. Its not worth the excitement of seeing new teams.

      3. You seem to have missed the points being raised above, you also seem to suffer from the same catastrophic arrogance about F1 that Ferrari does. Also before 1999 you hadn’t won a championship in 21 years, history doesn’t prove anything, all it proves is that there is never a best team in F1, Ferrari was the best team of the 00’s but what about 80’s and 90’s, that would be Williams and McLaren don’t you think? Dominant at various points throught 20 years of Ferrari nothingness.

        Also we acept that F1 needs Ferrari to a point but the reason no one cares when Ferrari threatens to leave is no one belives it, because Ferrari needs F1 more. F1 would indeed suffer without Ferrari, but it would never collapse, give it five years and it would have rebuilt itself. Ferrari would lose more fans that F1 would.
        Also if Ferrari was to hit another dry patch, loosing it would mean as much as loosing lotus was originally, very sad to loose an historic name, but certainly not the end of the sport an within a few years we’d have all have gotten over it.

        1. F1 would not fall apart if Ferrari left. It just wouldn’t.

        2. I was in Italy for 2 races in 2005 when Raikonnen and Alonso were fighting for the title.

          I was amazed how quickly the fans had switched from wearing red shirts and caps to silver and blue ones. Perhaps only 10% was still wearing red.

          Maybe if Ferrari leave in a fight it might cost some fans, but otherwise it just loses some die hard Italian fans and the whole of F1 wouldn’t even notice.

          1. Speedy, Ferrari is not the life of F1,

            Alot of good teams have come and left, and when those teams left alot of people thought it was the end if f1, i.e. lotus, alfa romeo, brabham. But f1 carrys on!

            What F1 doesnt need is Ferrari’s moaning and complaining, if they are not happy, then why dont they leave? im shure there are alot of people who would happily show them the the door!

            …….oh! and lets not forget a few years ago, a red helmet wearing german drivng a ferrari almost drove all of the f1 fans away, so dont say ferrari is the life of f1, because they almost destroyed it

          2. 10%? Credibility FAIL.

    15. I’ve only been watching f1 since around 2000. But being a fan, I’ve read and seen many things about the years before that. And I can’t think of a single season where cars were that evenly matched as in 2009. And now ferrari is acting like 2009 is the new standard. F1 is forgetting its history fast.

    16. Looks like another F1 driver has joined Twitter – Timo Glock:

      http://twitter.com/realTimoGlock

      Added to the F1 Twitter directory

      1. thanks Keith

    17. Wow I can’t believe how easily people are getting worked up over this.
      I completely disagree with Massa’s comments – I’m not bothered about the new teams really but I doubt they will be a danger or cause any problems particularly safety problems. I also think negative comments straight away in the press doesn’t do the sport any good either.
      However, this is pretty standard…his team says one thing so he agrees. A journalist asked the question so he answered. I really don’t see why it’s such an issue, it was pretty predictable thatb these comments would come eventually.
      I don’t like to criticise the drivers too much either as they’re the ones who need to feel comfortable racing and come race day they may have to lap these new cars. That (no matter how good the driver is at passing them) will inevitable cost time so I can see the frustration although it would be more polite if Massa waited to see how it played out rather than just critising before any action even if I can understand the apprehension.
      But I don’t like the way this dissolves into a ‘oh just another Ferrari rant’, ‘Felipe whinging again’ and any bumps on the head jokes I find slightly distasteful. I’d much rather discuss and debate what Felipe is actually saying as that is why I come to this site.

      1. agree stpeh. Ferrari can’t say anything negative unless some people here slam them, it’s like they aren’t allowed to have an opinon.

        1. Good points Steph. However, it is a forum and all comments are fair play. While I don’t agree with some of them, I do find it enjoyable to read the biased posts. What else do I have to do on a lazy Sunday morning?

          1. True and I like the freedom we get here and wouldn’t want to change it but I do disagree with some of the comments :P

      2. Because Steph, it *is* yet more of the same from Ferrari and Massa. I appreciate you are a fan of Felipe’s and glad you disagree with him too, but in that case you should be just as critical. Respect needs to be showed, and the less they show then the less they earn. These comments keep coming out and you wonder why people are always having a go at them?

        People are debating why Massa said what he did, it’s just that maybe you don’t agree with their answerbecause it happens to coincide and reinforce biased notions about Ferrari, which would have far less credence if they stopped pulling stuff like this.

        I mean, by all means advance an alternate theory of why Massa said what he did, beyond the “Ferrari culture”, because from your post it seems like you actually agree with most others hete that that’s what’s behind these comments.

        1. I do think that it’s probably half down to Ferrari but also down to the fact he’ll probably end up lapping the cars himself and may find that frustrating. I find myself understanding what felipe is saying but I think he should really wait to see what the situation is and the new teams will need time anyway.
          It may be the same from Ferrari and Massa and I don’t mind people debating the points at all (and most fanatics have done a wonderful job of arguing their points) I just don’t like some of the attitudes which have appeared more and more of “it’s Ferrari, they’re arrogant but what do you expect” and some of the jokes that were said. They have a right to an opinion and yes it is repetitive but I just think some of things said are over the top and even patronising -although this is a minority I’m refering too-and would prefer a real debate about the points Massa brings up. I want to get to the real issue not flippant comments.
          Respect or at least politeness should be shown from all sides from the fans, Ferrari and every team young and old and sadly that isn’t the case on any side.

    18. The excuse by a driver that he was held up on his flying lap by a slower car has been around for years and this is what Massa was saying. it is very easy to attack Ferrari and what they feel about some of the new teams. Why not actually think about what they are saying before arriving at let me have a rant at them. F1 needs new teams and new blood but most importantly they need to be competitive and I can’t see this from most of the new teams. We will have a completely untested car on the grid in less than a week, is this what we really want? Many here don’t remember cars finishing 8 of 10 laps down but let me please say it is not to watch or good for the sport. Last year 10 teams were all very close together and nearly everyone had a chance of winning points at some stage or other,
      Can we really think that is going to happen this year?

      1. Maybe not this year but how about in 1 or two? Lotus could be the poorest of the new teams, mainly down to the delayed start but look what they’ve acheived already, what do you think they’ll have managed in two years?
        Virgin seems to be doing pretty well, an HRT now it has stability can be expected to grow very well.
        An these are proper new teams, not just the snap ups of manafacturers with ridiculous budgets, Ferrari is being way to judgemental an the lights haven’t even gone out yet, not even that single qualifying light. The new teams may be lapped a fair amount this year, but they have to be given time to grow, an these comments just don’t help.

    19. I have to say I hadn’t even thought about how the new teams might affect things in Q1. Might make for some interesting dramas…

    20. Ned Flanders
      7th March 2010, 10:17

      Someone with a better knowledge of history can correct me on this if I’m wrong, but I bet Ferrari weren’t exactly on the pace in their first season of GP racing. No team ever will be. Are Ferrari suggesting that the F1 grid is fixed and no more new teams ever allowed because they might be slow at first?! It’s ridiculous.

      Toyota spent a stupid amount of money on a year of testing prior to their F1 debut yet they still finished last in the Constructors championship, so what hope do the likes of Lotus and Hispania have? Give the new boys a chance for God’s sake

      1. Ferrari won nothing in the first year of official racing in 1950. In 51 they won half of the races and in 52 all but one.

        1. Ned Flanders
          7th March 2010, 11:14

          Yeah but Ferrari weren’t a new team in the 50’s were they. I’m thinking more of the twenties and thirties, when Ferrari first started racing

          1. His first ever Ferrari was the 125s. A 1.5ltr V12 produced in 1947. It won the 2nd race it entered, The Rome GP. It won 6 races that year. Before that he bought old Alfa/Lancia/Maserati cars and raced them. Most cars at the time were a collection of parts (out with the works teams).He also continued to race until the early 30’s and was not happy at the cars he had to work with. Alfa and Maserati would always give him older and less powerful cars. During the 30’s and until the war the German teams of Auto Union and Mercedes ran the show. Hitler put huge amounts of money into the sport to show German superiority.

            1. Ned Flanders
              7th March 2010, 12:02

              **Alfa and Maserati would always give him older and less powerful cars**

              Just like Ferrari used to give Sauber older and less powerful engines!

              **The German teams ran the show**

              Just like Ferrari and McLaren have largely run the show for years at a time over the past 50 years!

              **Hitler put huge amounts of money into the sport to show German superiority**

              A bit like the manufacturers (including Ferrari) put even larger amounts of money into the sport looking to show their superiority!

              I see what you’re saying Rampante but I think the situation all the new independent teams are in is not dissimilar to Ferrari’s own experience decades ago

      2. I agree that they should be given a chance however I do understand why there is criticism especially with FOTA who will want as strong a position as possible.
        It’s going to take them time especially when the field is so competitive. My only concern would be how much commitment they really are going to show the sport. I’m surprised 3 out of 4 made it really, that’s more than I thought and I have to say well done to the teams for getting this far and I hope they progress well even if it does take time.
        I hated Toyota’s spend-and-hope policy. It just showped they didn’t really understand F1 and even if the new teams do a lot worse than that as long as they show commitment and a bit more passion for the sport than I’ll be happy.

        1. Ned Flanders
          7th March 2010, 11:17

          “FOTA will want as strong a position as possible.”

          You’re right… which is exactly why Ferrari’s constant belittling of their potential allies is so daft!

          1. I think there is some logic to it. If they’re hard as they can be on the new teams and add to the pressure then there’s a chance they might cave and leave which will make no difference whatsoever. If they are warm to them just for the new teams to fall into trouble and run to Bernie or the FIA then it could undermine FOTA’s strength in theory.

            1. FOTA is now an organisation which is made of mostly independent teams. Not the original intention I’m sure!

    21. The marshall’s with the blue flag’s are going to busy then!.
      Scything through traffic is a part of f1 any way ! ,Ferrari just put those statement’s out there to rattle the team’s in to moving out the way if there being lapped!
      This time next week we will be a go for Bahrain !.

      1. Maybe, but the new teams are gonna dislike them now and will probably be less likely to move out the way! Especially if they’re in a battle for the lead

        1. ha haa, never thought about that, thats six cars with a possible grudge, it would be strangley poetic if it turned out they where shooting themselves in the foot.

    22. Also to note, Charlie Whiting failed to visit the McLaren factory to clear the MP4-25 due to “travel difficulties”. I predict this will rumble on, especially if McLaren turn out to be serious contenders at Bahrain, and Todt will side with his old team Ferrari. I still don’t think all the teams play on a level playing field and that is F1’s downfall.

      1. No, I don’t think that will happen. Ferrari are already running a similar system, so unless they completely fail to get it to work (as with the mass dampers) then the story will be quietly buried. Indeed Ferrari have already said they’re not the ones making the protest – Red Bull are. These systems are a lot easier to implement than the double diffuser, which required a redesign of the whole floor and rear of the car.

        Todt won’t be involved in the day-to-day running of F1 like Mosley was. He will have next to no involvement if this case comes up at the World Motor Sport Council, which I doubt.

        1. the FIA have already released a statement saying the design is legal…see paragraph 6

          http://www.pitpass.com/fes_php/pitpass_news_item.php?fes_art_id=40058

          1. I hope this is right and thanks for the link.

          2. That link is to an old article and only states that that Charlie Whiting is going to check the wing.

      2. Whitings plane was delayed on the way back from the USA. There’s no new date been anounced but this should be resolved before Bahrain.

        1. yes the plane was delayed – but this should not stop us trying to blame ferrari for this, why should we let truth get in the way of a good story

    23. Andrew White
      7th March 2010, 11:01

      I got Sir Jack Brabham’s autograph at Goodwood a few years back (well my dad did, but we still have the signed programme :)). It will be great to see so many champions in one place, even if Kimi and Piquet can’t be there.

    24. F1 should be the best of the best and the way FIA decided to grant places it proved to be wrong!
      USF1 didn´t even managed to put any kind of car on the grid, even with controlled costs.
      F1 is all about money and development, if a car manufacturer has so many limitations that cannot improve the car, so why be in F1 anyway!
      Many think having same Cosworth motors will help in any way, butm where´s the fun of the impredictable.
      Technical freedom should be allowed to stop all politics and cases around F1, if a team wants to invest in a car and has money for it, why not do it?
      For me it´s much more disgraceful to see cars with a limited budget draging himselves to the finishing line!

      1. “F1 is all about money and development”
        Ned gave the perfect example earlier of Toyota before. They were all about the money and it didn’t really work.

        1. They had the money, but they never had an ‘Adrian Newey’.

      2. Yeah whine some more about the “unfair FIA”. Yaaaaaawn.

        It may come as a shock to you, but Virgin claims to be running at the budget that ALL teams will have to be at in a few years.

        1. Ferrari and a few (very few) other teams will always have a huge ability to spend money on whatever they want.

          It will be intersting to see if these teams keep their word on the resource restriction agreement or if they find that one day the ’40 million’ teams are getting too close for comfort.

          1. I should hope that the rules are written better than that.

            But yeah, we’ll see how it works out.

            I really hope they bring budgets down to that level and take the “corporate identity” out of F1 again.

      3. “F1 is all about money and development,”

        And it’s a crying shame because of that.

        “Many think having same Cosworth motors will help in any way, butm where´s the fun of the impredictable.”

        Yes, there was never a time when nearly all the engines were from one manufacturer. *sarcasm*

        “Technical freedom should be allowed to stop all politics and cases around F1, if a team wants to invest in a car and has money for it, why not do it?”

        Because the other teams that don’t want to invest in technology in a sport that does not warrant that amount of money spending on technology, will simply walk away…like they have done.

        “For me it´s much more disgraceful to see cars with a limited budget draging himselves to the finishing line!”

        For me it’s much more disgraceful to hear a team berate its fellow competitors.

        Will Brazil be tearing chunks out of New Zealand during the coming world cup I wonder?

        1. Will not Ferrari be competing at Lemans this year? Will they be up there with the Audi’s and Peugeots or will they be merely ‘getting in the way’ like everyone else?

        2. Brazil will not be giving them 3 goals of a start just to make it interesting either.
          3 or 4 teams have a chance of winning the world cup. The rest just make up the numbers. F1 is exactly the same and if your star player is taken out of the competition by a minor player in a minor team you have reason to be pi**ed off.

          1. HounslowBusGarage
            7th March 2010, 14:11

            Yes Rampante, but Brazil have not started off by saying that New Zealand or whoever are rubbish and don’t deserve to be in the competition, have they? And that is exactly the attitude being displayed by Ferrari and Massa.

            1. I can’t wait to see the comments on this site when Hamilton/Button/Vettel fail to get into Q2 because of a very slow car trying to put in a lap 5 sec down from them.
              Hope everyone on this site remembers this during the season. With fewer tyres and more cars in Q3 how many are going to suffer. The last time there was this type of gap quali lasted 1 hour and drivers had time to put in a lap. Even last year this excuse was a very much used one.

            2. rampante – As if that doesn’t happen already anyway. Webber could have been on pole at Silverstone last year if there hadn’t been a slower car in his way. It was a Ferrari.

        3. The Ferrari was slow because they were intentionally slowing him up, not because the car didn’t have the slightest possibility of being within 2 seconds of the leader.

      4. Mouse_Nightshirt
        7th March 2010, 14:23

        Technical freedom would, going by recent history, be disasterous for Ferrari. The last golden age of technical freedom (which ended in the mid nineties), Ferrari were nowhere.

      5. Again, I like new teams and want more technical freedom, but ensure safe lap times during the race or get black flagged… That IS fair. Otherwise why not show up in a 67′ beetle and just make a further mockery? If they use a Van they can get more ad exposure- especially at the slower speeds!

        Teams, regardless of new or old, need to be able to compete at a safe speed. We are here to see cars go fast, not crash.

        1. HEY IN NZ WE ARE VERRY HAPPY TO BE IN THE WORLD CUP!!! we have only qualified to be in the world cup twice now! and we are very very and thankful to have even got in! alot of hard work from the guys paid off! although we do not think we are going to do very well we are happy to just be there!

          Maybe Massa should get off his high horse, and realise that other drivers will be trying to make thier carrers in those “slow cars” and its going to be very dificult for them, but they seem very happy just to be in f1, B. SENNA (HRT car launch) “for me this is a realisation of a dream”.

          these teams dont have ferrari resources, ferrari money, ferrari facitities. so Massa, why dont you look at the oportunity that ferrari has given you, stop whining and try do your best, its not fair to politely say the new teams s**t.

          im sure that the new teams are feeling the same like our nz soccer team. and believe me we are excited to just be taking place, maybe you should be to Felipe

    25. For anyone interested (UK guys only), BBC’s F1 Preview is currently on a rolling loop on the Red Button service (excluding Freeview).

      Should be on website first thing tomorrow. :)

      1. It’s damn good as well.

    26. “USF1 didn´t even managed to put any kind of car on the grid, even with controlled costs.”

      You think that Ferrari only spent 40 mil on their car?

    27. I’ve got a feeling that this week is going to seem longer then the whole of the winter break.

    28. Goodness, wee Massa getting grumpy because he’s assured of beating a few cars?

      Everyone jot the quote down somewhere, that is a great lien to regurgitate when Ferrari put the wrong wheels on & Virgin’s computer saw the rain coming, then going, and the Virgin wagon wobbles into one place ahead of the pony…

      On a different note, does anyone know any good F1 podcasts? I want to have more build up to the season but I’m yet to find a podcast I like.

    29. What i am saying is that F1 should have technical freedom and each team will decide how much to invest or not in the sport!
      I also believe that technical freedom will reduce the costs as new things/parts will come from this!
      All teams are putting a lot of money and resources just to get the best possible data from any new part, this is because they cannot do anything different and elevate the sport.
      I understand that a lot of guys are from the UK and like to see as many british teams and drivers as possible, but will F1 survive without all the other F1 fans?
      I like the UK and i am married with an all english woman (that i love)but same motor, same parts is killing the sport, last year was Toyota and BMW, next will be others.
      Big and small teams are necessary for the sport but so many rules and changes are making even the biggest teams scared!

      1. you are right about a link between technical restriction and cost speedy. If there are tight restrictions and limited freedoms, teams have to develop similar ideas to the nth degree to gain an advantage, but, if they have greater freedom, then it is easier to think out side of the box and come up with a new idea that other people dont have and implement it.

      2. I dont see what nationality has to do with anything.

        There are other issues with limited technical freedom, it becomes easier to limit the speed (which the FIA feels is important) and the cars are more likely to be of similar pace (something Ferrari are obviously concerned about). When you remove restrictions you open the door to teams wiping the floor with the competition (which having been an unfortunate viewer in 2002 I can tell you is not interesting to watch).

        1. The rules are so specific that one could build a car with no working knowledge of car building by just following the rules.
          I believe this is the point of contention anyway and I feel that way as well.

    30. Does F1 need Ferrari ???
      Not as much as Ferrari need F1 to sell its cars .

      1. Are you kidding? F1 needs Ferrari (and Mclaren) much more than those teams need F1. Ferrari makes money off gear and blankets, mugs, cologne and lighters. F1 is primarily a passion for them- not a car seller. I’m not saying it doesn’t help their image at all, but they did it for 20 years while losing and this did not stop them from selling plenty of cars. Please don’t think Ferrari need F1. I’d like to think that it was more of a balance, but if anything F1 definitely needs them more.

    31. Rabbit, I think you will find that Ferrari do not need F1 to sell 4000 cars a year. Even during the 21 years without a title they still had long waiting lists for road cars. Mercedes and BMW need good publicity to sell the 80-90000 cars they make a month.That is why Mercedes have stated that if they don’t win titles the are off.
      I know this is a British site with mostly British viewers but just look at GP’s around the world and the prominent colour is red. If Ferrari or Mclaren left it would be a disaster for the sport.

    32. No !!!!!
      I’m not a Ferrari hater , infact i love Ferrari road cars and their heritage .
      Its only their attitude nowadays , to turn F1 into Ferrari 1 that bugs me .

      1. The last thing I would want as well.I dislike the way everyboby that really does not understand the sport support Ferrari.It is not unlike all the Manchester United fans in the far east.Here in Italy it is a national support and differs from other countries. The choice of team has been limited for too long here unlike the UK. I just can’t see why everytime a statement is made everyone cries foul, we all have an opinion and a right to say it. Uncle Ron was one of the very best at it and he is sadly missed.

    33. “Rabbit, I think you will find that Ferrari do not need F1 to sell 4000 cars a year.”

      Really ???
      Then why did they rope in Schumacher ??? Why did they say – Feel like Schumacher at the wheel ??? Why is he in ads for every Ferrari car including the 458 Italia ????

      If they won’t win titles for the next 21 years , will the remain in F1 ? I think not .

      Bottom-line : Formula 1 > Ferrari .

      Always .

      With malice towards one and all ,
      rabbit : )

      1. Rabbit,
        simple answer. They brought Schumi in because after 20 years they wanted to win again and got serious about it. Its like the Nike sponsorship… they do it to sell even more gear. Watch Mercedes gear sales this year! Michael brings in more money than he costs… plus he’s fast as all hell and wins championships.

      2. I agree that F1 is greater than any one team but tbh who wouldn’t rope in Schumacher, especially then, he was the best driver in F1.

        Also when they did he wasn’t half the brand he was today, Schumacher the brand wears red, he doesn’t hock mild7.
        Schumacher won seven titles with Ferrari, the fact that he actually won two of those with Benetton barely registers to civies.

    34. Well, i am a Ferrari fan and a Ferrari driver as well and i may say that Ferrari can sell many cars even without being in F1 or win a Championship!
      Ferrari needs F1 and F1 needs Ferrari, that is the pure truth, but let´s not think that F1 will be the same without Ferrari!
      I am a supporter of techical freedom in F1, wouldn´t any of you guys like to drive a car that was developed and tested in a real F1 race track?
      These limitations and rules are just making the costs go higher and when a team spends hundreds of thousands of euros just to develop a new part for an aero package i don´t see where the sport is being less expensive, the money invested in real development is much more appealing to any team.
      BMW and Toyota have not left the sport because they don´t have money, they sell many cars around the world, the real reason is technical limitations that cannot be transfered to a real driving road car!

    35. I would like to see more tyre ,engine and lubricant manufacturers coming into F1 .
      Rules must be made so that F1 acts as a catalyst for roadcar development.What would normally take 50 years will be done in 10 years due to the competition .

      Do we see that happening now ????? What is the use of spending billions of dollars if it can’t translate into anything that can be of use to the common man ??? I would really like to see F1 moving towards greener technologies . The reason for not developing many such technologies is attributed to high costs . We have the money , we have the talent . We just need to act .

    36. Completely agree with you rabbit!

      1. I agree with what you say too. I liked the sport when we had 3 tyre manufacturers and big differences in car engine sizes and ideas. It has always been good to hear a V12 engine followed by a V10 and the Ford V8.

        1. The V8 wasn’t powerful enough and the V12 was too thirsty and heavy.

          It will not matter how open you make the regulations, there will always be a certain configuration that works better than the others and eventually if not immediately all the teams will adopt it.

    37. how meny times dose a driver have to be laped for it to be a joke?,,,2 times 3? 4?

      1. Lol it’s even a picture from the same series as the STR picture they used. Probably 4 frames later or so.

        Someone classified the picture wrongly though. It’s called redbull_380x223_999835a.jpg

      2. Although it does highlight how rather stupidly similar the Red Bull and Toro Rosso car liveries are.

    38. Six days to go and no forum back yet ???????????????

    39. Keith have you seen this story (particularly the last few lines)?

      http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/motorsport/formula_one/8554302.stm

      :D

      1. interesting read, thnx

      2. I had, thanks, going in the next round-up!

    40. I am disappointed Massa has come out and said this. The new teams may currently be seconds of the pace but did anyone really expect anything different.

      Anyway it is only in recent years that the gap between the front and back has been so small, and we will only have 24 cars on the grid so its not as if it will be a record breaking number of cars, so I don’t see a problem with the speed difference.

      If there is a danger it will be from the drivers themselves, and if that is the case they should have their Super Licence revoked just like Ide did in 2006 when he drover for Super Aguri.

    41. Even teams can come from the back of the field, take Force India as example. A man with money (a lot) and the will to improve that really helps a developing team to build a beter car.

    42. ferrari really do have their drivers toeing the party line. I wonder what the drivers will have to say when autobiographies are being flogged and they have no ties to the reds…

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