Williams ‘don’t feel Bottas is a rookie’

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Valtteri Bottas, Williams, Jerez, 2013In the round-up: Williams expect Valtteri Bottas to be on Pastor Maldonado’s pace.


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Williams does not see Bottas as a rookie (Autosport)

Williams chief engineer Xevi Pujolar: “Because he has been with us for a long time and because he has done a few Friday sessions, we know him well. We don’t feel like he is a rookie.”

Canal+ wins French F1 rights (Advanced Television)

“The race broadcasts will be shown on pay-TV, but the agreement includes the airing of a free-to-air magazine programme. Canal+ will also show free-practice and qualifying sessions.”

HRT termina en el desguace (AS, Spanish)

HRT’s chassis, machinery and tools have been sold to a parts recycling company called Teo Martin.

Lewis Hamilton returns to Top Gear test track (Evening Standard)

“The BBC said: ‘This time the track is dry and Lewis is taking no prisoners in his attempts to smash the lap record.'”


Comment of the day

Adrian Sutil’s chances of getting the second Force India seat seem to be improving but a lot of readers seem to prefer Jules Bianchi for the drive:

I’m surprised that Sutil is still in the running for the seat. He must have done well in his year away from the sport to secure enough backing to keep him in contention this long. I assume that Bianchi hasn?t gotten the drive yet because Force India is seeking Ferrari engines cheaper than Ferrari are willing to supply, merely for the sake of Bianchi.

I?m still hoping Bianchi will get the second seat, because I find it more interesting to see what he can do compared to round two of Sutil ?ǣ DiResta. However, with the trouble Mallya and Sahara find themselves in currently, I will settle for any Force India presence on the grid this and coming seasons.

From the forum

Site updates

A new biography has been added for Marussia’s new hiring Luiz Razia. Find biographies of all the new F1 drivers here:

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On this day in F1

Two-times world champion Graham Hill was born on this day in 1929. And 50 years to the day later, future Benetton, McLaren and Williams driver Alexander Wurz was born.

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  • 47 comments on “Williams ‘don’t feel Bottas is a rookie’”

    1. OmarR-Pepper (@)
      15th February 2013, 0:18

      So painful and embarrasing to see how HRT ended up in a junkyard… literaly. The caja Magica complex, which was originaly created for tennis, hosted them for a little time. When the team moved up there, believe me, I thought they were finally settled and, moreover, would have the possibility to challenge Marussia. It never materialized. The place is empty, they just vanished without grabbing points ore any real goals achieved.
      RIP HRT

      1. As Sala said, it was a nightmare. Team had zero “know how” and everything had to be outsourced and bought on a side. They probably were spending twice as much money on the same things other teams were spending.

        Latest confidence call for Marussia from Bernie is a good sign, they must have improved their operations drastically, good for sport.

        HRT was like a pay driver, only problem is, pay drivers are actually pretty good racing drivers, while HRT did not have much of a skill set beside buying it spot on the grid.

    2. No real news today. :(
      Man I need my daily F1 fix.

        1. Still cannot believe how small those side pods are ! Amazing job from Sauber, just hope they work better than McLaren’s L-Shaped pods in 2011. Those were beautiful ineffective !

        2. Excellent pics on that article @bascb .
          I couldn´t help noticing that the Lotus exhaust is the one that most resembles the exhaust on the RBR… And I can´t help but think if maybe they share some info… I mean, sure it might be labeled a LOTUS but, to me, it´s still a renault, same engine supplier as RBR… Maybe they share something more than just engines.
          Anyways, thanks for the article, never would have found it myself.
          The Sauber pods look amazing and in a way, I feel that we are going to see great performances from this car… it might even be a dark horse!

          1. @JB Well the team just uses the LOTUS name like sponsoring but except for the engines Renault really has no shares left in the team and they race under British license. This is a team that seems to be a bit in an identity crisis. I try to look at them as the Enstone team.

      1. A German piece about the exhausts so far this season (pictures+ article) explaining why Red Bull’s solution will suit Vettel better than Webber – don’t forget to look at those pictures

      2. this might also interest you – A FIA piece on modern stewarding – focussing on the tools at their disposal

        1. @bascb That’s the article which was published in Auto a couple of months ago which was mentioned here:

          Grosjean ban ‘not just for affecting the championship’

          1. Ah, now I remember where I read that before @keith-collantine!

    3. Agree completely with COTD, @AdrianMorse has hit the nail on the head regarding Force India’s selection of drivers, I imagine Di Resta will be given the boot next year if Bianchi get’s the seat and is on par with him, I also imagine that will be the end of Di Resta’s F1 career. The only way Di Resta can continue in F1 is by pulling something special out the bag this season, destroying his team mate, earning a few podiums and showing that he can overtake on the level Hamilton, Raikkonen, Alonso and Vettel demonstrated in 2012. If you search for Di Resta overtakes on youtube the only videos are of him being overtaken or him performing simple DRS passes..

      1. How about a Scottish independence revolution followed by a Dictator taking over, nationalising the oil industry and sponsoring DiResta to the tune of $50mill., that might work.

    4. So what exactly does the horrible beheading of HRT tell us ? Don’t even think about F1 if you ain’t got the cash !?

      I feel sad for them but I not too much — I mean, who bases an F1 team in SPAIN !?

      There’s a reason Vijay Mallya didn’t base Force “India” in Bangalore/Delhi/Bombay.

      Maybe they’ve beheaded themselves….all in all, it’s a sad sight. I’ve always rooted for the underdog !

      1. More like “don’t even think about Formula 1 if you don’t know what you’re doing”.

        HRT got off to a bad start from the beginning. Adrian Campos made the same mistake that Alain Prost did when he established Prost Grand Prix – they assumed that there was public and corporate demand for a “national” team. Campos sought to capitalise on the popularity of Fernando Alonso in his native Spain, but the problem was that Spain was only interested in Alonso. They didn’t care for the likes of Jaime Alguersuari. So the whole tihng was a shambles from the start, and when Colin Kolles was brought on-board, he said that the team only had a warehouse in Barcelona with a few “engineers” drawing CAD designs and no way to build the car.

        It also didn’t help that Campos – along with USF1, Manor and Lotus Racing – were admitted to the grid under the impression that there would be a budget cap, which had been promised by the FIA and then summarily rejected by the the teams.

        1. @prisoner-monkeys

          Well said. I think any promoter/promoter group that has launched an F1 team on impulse has met with disaster.

          AFAIK, guys like Dietrich Mateschitz and Vijay Mallya have been involved with F1 since the 90s. If I am not mistaken Mateschitz started his involvement in F1 when Red Bull sponsored Sauber and apparently Mallya sponsored Benetton during the Shumacher days.

          All in all, I must say behind all the glitz and glamour of F1, it seems there is an extremely sordid and terrifying picture. One aspect of the picture that comes to my mind is what Richard Branson labeled F1 – a “financial black hole” .

          The only good thing I see out of HRT’s gruesome death is the exodus of our beloved Karthikeyan !!!

          1. Well said. I think any promoter/promoter group that has launched an F1 team on impulse has met with disaster.

            It wasn’t on impulse. Adrian Campos sold his GP2 team, Campos Racing, to Alejandro Agag – who renamed it Addax – in 2008 so that he could concentrate on putting together a Formula 1 entry.

            AFAIK, guys like Dietrich Mateschitz and Vijay Mallya have been involved with F1 since the 90s. If I am not mistaken Mateschitz started his involvement in F1 when Red Bull sponsored Sauber and apparently Mallya sponsored Benetton during the Shumacher days.

            And Campos is no stranger to Formula 1, either. In addition to running Campos Racing in GP2, Formula 3 and some of the early World Series By Renault championships, he was a former (if somewhat obscure) Formula 1 driver himself; he made twenty-one starts with Minardi beteen 1987 and 1988.

    5. HRT’s chassis, machinery and tools have been sold to a parts recycling company called Teo Martin.

      I have no words to describe how sad this is… Sure, it was HRT and their chassis and assets were never something much, but…it wasn’t garbage for god’s sake. Put them up for an auction, sell them to a collector, someone who wants them in his shed or living room or something. It’s an F1 chassis, SOMEONE will come up with a desirable amount of cash and buy it / put it to some use, at some point.

      It’s understandable that Thesan and the owners want to cover as much of their losses as possible but…no F1 team should end up in a scrapyard, no matter how poor its showings were.

      Probably the saddest thing after Pescarolo’s Le Mans exit.

      1. @tony031r
        Indeed. People can laugh at HRT all they want, but at the end of the day, it is still a Formula 1 car. Sure, not very successful, but nevertheless, an F1 car. Most people such as myself would die to have the 2012 HRT F1 car in our hands

        1. Lewisham Milton
          15th February 2013, 8:32

          Maybe it’ll end up on the ceiling of a restaurant somewhere!

      2. If you read the article, it actually points to the company wanting to sell the cars (or parts of them) to collectors @tony031r

        1. @bascb: I thought it was referring to waste management collectors rather than collectors per-se. I have close to 0 spanish language competences and Google Translate doesn’t always help much… :)

          1. In that case, I am glad I was able to take away your worst fears by pointing these things out @tony031r!

            Still is sad that the team ended up noting more than a wholesale auction of office furniture and a collection of memorabilia though.

          2. Apart from the recycling company one of the HRT cars was bought by Pirelli (to serve as a showcar)

    6. The French deal is a real pain, I’ll be in France for 4 races over the summer. I guess I’ll be watching online.

      Saying that after sampling star sports, 10 sport, TF1 and German coverage in the last year, the BBC/sky coverage is far far superior!

      1. Guys you gotta get over it. It’s the “new normal”. Most of the world pays to watch top sports. I pay for Formula One, GP2, Le Mans, Indy, NBA, UEFA Champions League, Europa League, EPL, La Liga and so on. Free-to-air F1 is pretty rare these days.

        However, those wit access to speedy Internet service will do well without a subscription.

      2. @kenny, @jcost, it’s not just a problem for us fans, it’s a problem for the teams as well, sponsors want exposure to the biggest audience possible, as viewing numbers go down so does the value of team sponsorship.
        This is another case of what is good for Bernie/CVC trumping what is good for the teams and fans.

    7. Abdurahman (@)
      15th February 2013, 4:23

      I’ve always wondered if some of these HRT type teams are just some type of money laundering fronts! Seriously.

    8. Happy birthday to @Enigma , one of the most intelligent F1 fans in the world! May Sauber win the 2013 world championship and may you get a Jaguar with 12 cylinders for your birthday!


      1. Completely and fully agree with that!

        And a happy birthday to the others today as well

      2. Haha, cheers guys :)

        1. Happy birthday @enigma !

    9. Chris (@tophercheese21)
      15th February 2013, 6:43

      lol when I went to Melbourne for the GP in 2011, i went to that restaurant every night. It makes the best Pizza!
      And you can get an F1 (Ferrari) history lesson whilst eating. haha

    10. Just thought I’d say, in exactly one months time (to the minute) the first and second practice sessions of the 2013 season would already be done and dusted.

      It is coming, it is coming very soon.

      1. @Serv – This makes me so happy ^_^

    11. I agree with @AdrianMorse that Sutil most probably wouldn’t be in contention for the free FI seat if he didn’t have some serious sponsor backing. I also agree that Bianchi deserves the chance even more than some of the 2013 rookies that have been signed so far.

      At the same time, I believe it would be wrong to dismiss Sutil as ‘just another pay driver’. I went through the (very reliable) F1 Fanatic driver rankings from 2007 until 2011. According to these, Sutil was beaten by his team mate only once during his career, in the 2009 season. In 2011, he was 9th and ahead of Perez, di Resta, Massa and Maldonado. If 9th or even 7th best driver in F1 (Kovalainen and Schumacher, who were ahead of him, won’t be on the grid in 2013) doesn’t deserve to be in the sport on merit, then I should seriously consider becoming a figure skating fan.

      1. The rankings are a subjective opinion, though. Other people may have ranked him last.

      2. But arguably since both Maldonado and Perez have improved their game a lot. And I would say Hulkenberg to be a better driver than Sutil as well. And Grosjean and Kimi now both take a spot in there as well.

        1. @BasCB I have to fully agree with you about Raikkonen and Hulkenberg. As for the rest, I totally believe that Maldonado is insanely quick as well but he, just like Grosjean and Perez, still needs to prove that he can be consistent as well. And even if Sutil is 10th, 12th or 15th best driver in the world, I still think there is no reason to leave him out of F1.

          It’s not only about subjective opinions either. Sutil has been better than his team mates in all the key performance indicators:

          Qualifying 56:31
          Points 94:56
          Faster race lap 51:34

          He is only 30 and has spent only 2 of his 5 F1 seasons in more or less competitive machinery. All of this is why I believe he deserves another chance.

          1. And even if Sutil is 10th, 12th or 15th best driver in the world, I still think there is no reason to leave him out of F1.

            – sounds reasonable, although not at the expense of someonw who could potentially be amongst the top 10 (not too sure Bianchi is that, but we might be able to judge that after the season)

    12. William Brierty
      15th February 2013, 12:30

      Well, Bottas isn’t a rookie in the sense that he knows the team, the car, the G-forces and the team procedures, but with regards to overtaking, race starts, pit-stops and race-craft he is worse than the acknowledged rookies of Razia, Chilton, Gutierrez and Van der Garde, because they were all in GP2 last year, however Bottas hasn’t actually raced since his GP3 championship win in 2011. If I was a Williams team executive, I’d have entered Bottas in a race series, perhaps the British Formula Renault 2.0 Winter Series. However, I am excited about Bottas, who, in a rather Vettel-esc manner, seemed to naturally take to the sensations of driving an F1 car; and as a result went 15 FP1 sessions only really making one error (Germany).

    13. There’s an awful lot of “team bianchi” on that Sutil article. I wasn’t aware f1 fandom had descended to the depths of twilight/friends memes.

      Personally, I’m on Axe Cop’s team.

    14. Seriously… I can´t comprehend how Bottas can have such a strong following… I mean, give the guy a break already… people are building him up to be the next Schumacher and I would “bet the farm” that he will not perform to what is expected of him.
      Some fans are setting themselves up for a great dissapointment!

      1. I would not rate him as the “new” Schumacher really but I am expecting him to trash Maldonado into oblivion

    Comments are closed.