Robert Kubica, Renault, Barcelona, 2010

Renault still dealing with FOM over 2016 return – Lotus

F1 Fanatic Round-up

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In the round-up: Lotus say their Renault takeover deal is poised to go ahead pending further discussions between the manufacturer and Formula One Management.


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Here’s this weekend’s Caption Competition winner:

Fernando Alonso, McLaren, Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez, 2015

‘Are you sure you want to quit this session? All unsaved progress will be lost.’

There were loads of excellent suggestions this week so thanks to everyone who joined in, especially Karthik Mohan, @gebradenkip, Nick (@theawesomefish), Thedonz, Luis Conde and @Bullfrog.

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On this day in F1

Lewis Hamilton began his current reign as F1 champion by clinching his second world championship title on this day last year. His first reign as champion lasted 11 months and 16 days:

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  • 40 comments on “Renault still dealing with FOM over 2016 return – Lotus”

    1. Rearding the Mirror article, what’s more damning – Lewis driving with his phone in his hand or the fact it’s an iPhone, not a Blackberry? :)

      1. What is most impressive is that the Mirror can tell where he’s looking without seeing his eyes.

        1. ColdFly F1 (@)
          23rd November 2015, 0:57

          What’s even more impressive is that people actually click on The Mirror links ;-)

      2. Apparently it is not illegal to use your phone when driving in Florida which is where Lewis is I think…
        … not good for the PR though

        1. I do it too, but it’s wrong. Being legal or not.

      3. That was the first thing I thought too!

      4. At least he was driving a full works Mercedes this time though.

    2. The cliff was one of the worst things for Formula One to ever suffer. To have a driver’s race wrecked because they pitted one lap too early or late. It encouraged even more conservative driving than we have today. Terrible idea.

      1. Completely agree.

        Watching some of the ‘passes’ that occur because of the tyres was/is often just as boring to watch as the easiest of the DRS passes.
        Be it DRS or cheese tyres neither create real competitive overtaking & lead to 1 driver been utterly defenseless & unable to do anything to even try to defend.

        Let us take the best example of kimi raikkonen at china in 2012, he hit the cliff & in 1 lap dropped from 4th to something like 14th. yes fine hitting the cliff generated a dozen passes but watching kimi utterly defenseless with those other cars just driving by him was ease was neither fun or exciting to watch.

        I’d rather real overtaking & real racing with drivers pushing each other really hard, pushing each other to the limit without all of this absurd degredation, extreme tyre management & DRS highway passing thats plagued f1 since 2011 with all this non-racing crap!

      2. The cliff was one of the worst things for Formula One to ever suffer.

        I agree.

        I am not saying that I think tyre development is easy, but what I would like to see is a tyre with consistent performance for the majority of it’s life, followed by a predictable, gradual degradation over a few laps. This way, a driver will be able to push, and will then get a good warning that they have pushed too far and need to change.

      3. According to the poll on F1F, the majority of people were happy with the tyres in early Pirelli years (75-25). However when they changed their philosophy in 2013 more people were negative about it (47-43). So I am very surprised at your comments as it is pretty clear to me, racing suffered a lot since 2013 purely because of thermal degradation.

        Also I completely disagree that the driving was more conservative when cliff was there (’12-’13). Barcelona ’13 race lasted longer than previous year’s despite cars being nearly two seconds faster on raw pace.

        1. racing suffered a lot since 2013 purely because of thermal degradation.

          pirelli have been using thermal degredation right from the start, its not something pirelli only introduced in 2013.
          It was discussed in motorsport magazine a month or 2 ago, pirelli made the decision to go with thermal degredation because it was the cheapest & quickest/easiest option of forcing the need for 2-3 pit stops.
          michelin wanted/still wants to do it via a more traditional compound wear which would give maximum grip/performance over a stint & could be pushed to the limit over that stint but start to lose performance when the tyre compound wears below a certain point… Pretty much as tyres acted in F1 up until 2011 & how they work in other categories.

          I think the reason for the change of opinion among fans is that in the early days it was a novelty to see things mixed up as much as they usually were, however over time people have come to realize how artificial it all was & how far off the pace it was forcing drivers to drive to manage them, especially as more drivers have spoken out about it & how much more team radio & post race analysis we now have to discuss these things.

          Take me for example, Back in 2011 while I was firmly against the DRS I was quite open to the tyres & wasn’t so against the whole high degredation idea. However I started to change my mind during that year when it started to become clear how easy drivers were having to drive to manage the tyres after I read some comments from Mark Webber (And later Michael Schumacher) about the management aspect & just how much they were having to do.

          1. Well, I don’t know exactly how they worked in 2011. However there was a published change before 2013 that they are increasing thermal degradation (which led to some blow-outs btw). I know some put it down to less team radio, maybe that’s true, but why the likes of Webber and Alonso were happy back then only to change their mind less than a year later? We also must take Mark and Michael’s comments with a grind of salt. In his book Webber many tyres reiterated his driving style puts a lot of stress on his tyres so he struggled more. The most complains in 2012 were about “random” F1 and only Michael after a poor weekend hit at Pirelli.

    3. Serious question, would Perez still in F1 were not for comedy tyres?

      I can’t think of a time when he’s shown any real pace or a result not down to eeking a long stint out in clean air. Not discounting the skill involved but he seems a one trick pony lucky to be in a category that suits him perfectly.

      1. You play by the rules. If he’s found a category that fits him, what’s so wrong about that? It seems to have worked for Mark Webber, after all, and, as you say, there’s skill involved.

        1. Nothing wrong with it from his point of view but as a fan it hardly befits what I expect from the pinnacle of motorsport, I think my surprise is more the buzz he seems to be getting at the minute when his driving style and general performances when I think about it are the complete opposite to Max Verstappen.

          It’s good to have different styles making their way but I’d rather watch the driver who’s quick and highly skilled in close racing than the guy who lets everyone else race and gets the odd good result due to making longer stints and racing the stopwatch.

      2. Serious response, probably, but heven he acknowledges the tyre conservation works well for him, yet he realizes it is boring to watch. Also, try ‘Would Perez still BE IN F1 IF IT WERE NOT for comedy tyres’ – -what you wrote hurt my brain to read. Blame the phone, they all do. Proof reading FTW :-)

        1. lol oh the irony… heven = even. :-)

        2. Definitely too tired for writing comments on my phone last night!

      3. @alec-glen Yes, I believe he will still be in F1. His stint at McLaren shows he can keep up with Button and McLaren strategy somehow never played his advantage (managing tires).

      4. Perez (and the rest) adapt their style to suit the sort of racing they have to do. He might be even better if F1 had durable tyres…

      5. Why Pirelli is so obsessed with the cliff thing? I’m done with they will to take central stage in F1!


      Awesome! Come on Juan #GoForTheTripleCrown!

    5. So now it is RB’s fault that Renault delivered a bad engine 2 years in a row. Get your heads down, say sorry and solve the problem Renault.

      1. Already preparing excuses for 2016 I think.

        They truly seem to be lost and directionless which is really a shame considering they used to be the leader in inovations they helped get them the 4 in a row they keep harping on about.

        But Renault being Renault it can’t be their fault can it?

        1. RB may be complaining, but they are keeping their heads down and still delivering the best or arguably the second best chassis. That is what they can control and that is what they are doing well.

          Renault on the other hand are delivering a 3rd class engine which is miles off the pace. Then they complain about RB. Shut up and do your job. When you have the best or arguably second best engine, you can complain about RB.

      2. As I understand it, the inside of these type of engines is very much “Secret Squirrel” stuff, so when Red Bull went around to Illmore to ask them to improve the engine (which would be just leased from Renault, so Red Bull have no right to modify it), it would have automatically raised “Red Flags” at Renault because they would suspect Illmore of Intellectual Property theft (even if Illmore’s engineers never actually got to peek inside). Illmore, in return, wouldn’t want Renault peaking into their racing engines because they, in turn, would suspect Renault of Intellectual Property theft (even if their engineers, too, didn’t get to peek inside).
        By going down this path Red Bull weren’t going to please anyone, including themselves because neither Renault nor Illmore would trust each other with their most secret gems, so the next Renault engine Red Bull got was, unsurprisingly, not a substantial improvement on its predecessor because they had to make sure it didn’t contain any new secret gems.
        According to an article on the Motor Sport website Renault’s F1 managing director Cyril Abiteboul said “Our dialogue has almost stopped,” which is exactly what you’d expect. What happens if next year Lotus happen to be beating Red Bull, and are then accused of stealing Illmore technology? How is Renault going to defend itself?

    6. Maybe it’s too much to ask, but can’t pirelli produce a tyre that drivers can push hard on for 15 laps or so? In that way, you can go conservative and maybe make them last 20/25 laps if you want, but at least with overtaking at a premium, we still get the pleasure of watching a driver throw the car around, pushing like hell, even if there’s nobody around them.

      1. I think that is what Pirelli have already done. The problem is that the teams use computers to find the optimal length of tyre degradation and they tell their drivers to match a delta that gives speed but maximises the tyre life. Resulting in constant tire management by the driver.

        I think Pirelli are saying, we can give you 4 seconds of extra pace with a massive cliff once you go too far, not the gradual cliff they get now. However, I don’t see how a massive cliff changes anything. Teams will still use their computers to determine where the cliff is and will still tell their drivers to match a delta that maximises the tyres before the cliff. Even with a cliff, it stands to reason that if you drive the tyres harder they will degrade earlier, so not pushing has it’s benefits. i.e the drivers will still manage their tyres.

        Unless we have a tyre that can go a whole race and still be as good at the start as it is at the end, we will always have tyre management. But if we did that, we won’t have pit stops which will make F1 even more boring since there are fewer opportunities to overtake. Currently the fastest car wins. No pit stops and great tyres only helps that. Unfortunately degrading tyres adds strategy and some uncertainty to the proceedings. Tyre management is always going to be part of F1 and it probably should be as well.

        Let us assume that they make the tyres last to the end of the race with minimal deg and they increase mechanical grip so cars can get closer and overtake. All these things do is make sure the fastest car wins. Will there be any more overtaking? Only if a faster car stuffs up in qualifying and has to make its way back to it’s rightful position on the track.

      2. ColdFly F1 (@)
        23rd November 2015, 11:24

        can’t pirelli produce a tyre that drivers can push hard on for 15 laps or so?

        You mean that it performs as designed for 15 laps and then degrades quickly as if falling off a cliff?

        1. Whether it’s a cliff or a steady degradation curve over the stint length, I don’t mind, so long as the tyre doesn’t give up after 3 laps of maximum attack. For me, a lot of the pleasure of watching f1 cars, certainly in the past, was seeing a driver relentlessly pushing the car to the limit, think the laps that Schumacher used to put in once he’d gone light on fuel. Yes the car was lighter there due to the fuel effect, but the principle is the same, the driver was able to extract the maximum form the car for sustained periods of time.

          1. the problem with these pirelli’s is they put chemicals in the tyres that would never usually be there which makes the tyres start to degrade if they go above a certain temperature & once the process starts it apparently cant be stopped.

            this is why we hear so much about operating windows and why the drivers have to drive as far off the limit as they have done since 2011. if you push too hard the temperatures go up and the thermal degredation process begins which very quickly leads to the cliff which then see’s you dropping back like a rock unable to do anything to defend the places you are now hemorrhaging.

            what they should do is go back to compound based wear, this allows you to push the tyres hard throughout the life of the tyre with the wear occurring in a consistent & predictable way which gives the drivers much more of a feel for whats happening with the tyres…. you know like the way tyres acted up until 2011 & they they still act in every other racing category.

            the levels of tyre management & how far off the pace drivers are now able to drive has taken a big chunk of the spectacle & joy away from watching f1 cars been driven around a circuit. in the past when we had dull races at least we got to see the drivers pushing flat out & knew that they were been challenged by it. right now if we have a dull race its made even worse because the drivers are driving so slowly to manage tyres (and in some cases fuel) so the spectacle & joy of watching the cars been driven is gone. add onto that the easier/boring drs passes and you have an even worse spectacle.

    7. “We’d love to bring back a proper ‘cliff’.

      Enough is enough. Stop it Hembery! If you really want that ‘cliff, stand there yourself first instead of putting F1 onto it.

      1. Enough! Very true. All these geniuses trying to fix F1 should look for cliff. You are absolutely right.

    8. I wonder if Hamilton’s behaviour and recent results indicate that he feels kind of ‘lost’ after winning the third world championship. Of course, it is far too early to come to any conclusions, particularly as he has been in trouble on the road before and Rosberg and other team mates have managed to beat him before. But I found this quote from the United States Grand Prix interesting – “Now I’m like… I don’t know where it’s going next. There is no-one else I look to, that I want to equal or emulate now”. He always wanted to match Senna, now he has done it and admits that he has no particular goals left so does he still have enough motivation to keep fighting for further wins and titles? I guess we will find out in 2016.

    9. “We’d love to bring back a proper ‘cliff’. If we can engineer that in”

      For me personally there is so much wrong with this comment.

      F1, the best we can achieve . . . . and then backed off 30%.

    10. I didn’t get the caption.

      1. I guess it’s referring to the f1 games, when quitting a session

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