F1 news round-up: 26th March

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Here’s a collection of my F1 clippings from the past 24 hours. If you’ve spotted any more stories worth sharing please post them below.

SPEEDtv.com Spotlight: Voices of SPEED

“For too long the dominant rulemaking trend in racing – NASCAR, IndyCar, Daytona Prototypes, you name it – is to make all the cars the same. What was once a racing oddity – the “equally prepared” cars of the International Race of Champions – has become a way of life, variously promoted as a cost-efficiency, a means of equalizing the competition (and thus “improving the show”) or as NASCAR likes to call it, “putting the race in the hands of the driver.” That’s all well and good but universal IROC racing also has the effect of reducing motorsports to an advertising tool, largely irrelevant to automotive research and development.”

The Australian Grand Prix Preview – The Wait is Finally Over

Yes it's another F1 preview – but wait, what's this? What on earth is going on with Vettel's trousers? (Via Doctorvee on Twitter)

Cooper: Diffusers Overshadow F1 Opener

"Sam Michael of Williams insists that the protesting teams are frustrated because they don’t know the full story of how their rivals have got their diffusers to work, and says he knows they are confused because of some of the questions he’s being asked by his opposite numbers."

Pre-Season Interview with Frank Williams

"I think that if we look back at the end of the year and find ourselves in the top five; that would be a big step forward. I don’t think it’s impossible having seen what we’ve done this winter."

Anderson: Rosberg not blameless in Williams F1 slump

Gary Anderson on Nico Rosberg: “When he's had the opportunity he's thrown it away too often as well, so if I was Nico Rosberg I wouldn't just be pointing the finger at Williams. Yes, the car hasn't been as competitive as it needs to be, but when it was competitive it's been put in the barrier a few times and mistakes have happened. There are equal rights for blame there, I think."

Alan Jones swipes Australian Grand Prix race snubs

"Former Formula One world champ Alan Jones has lashed out at organisers of the Australian Grand Prix, revealing he was not invited to the event. An angry Jones also said organisers had missed a prime chance to boost flagging ticket sales by using the event to honour the 50th anniversary of Sir Jack Brabham's first world championship."

Port Phillip Council slams Grand Prix as 'outrage'

Port Phillip acting mayor Judith Klepner: "After 14 years residents have had more than enough. "Why should they have to suffer all that for a car race whose public price tag blew out to $41.3 million last year?"

Shiny new Button: Jenson reborn

"I wouldn't say that in the last few years it all went a little bit stale, but when something happens like that it's like 'wow!'. It does become a fresh start and getting into an F1 car makes me feel like a kid again. It's so exciting. It feels like 2000 again, but with nine years' experience. It's the perfect position to be in. I have the hunger to achieve. We have produced a car that I think is competitive and is very different to the last two cars we've produced. So we all feel like kids again and you can see that from the smiles on people's faces. This has brought us that much closer together, and it is a great team to be part of at the moment."

Ferrari's English weapon against Lewis Hamilton

Rob Smedley: "As a driver, Felipe has improved from black to white, 100 per cent. He was always quick but a bit wild at times. We have been working together for almost three years and have become friends. Year after year, race after race, Felipe has matured and he continues to do so."

Hamilton: Button deserves 'great car'

Hamilton on Brawn GP: "It's great to see Brawn GP do so well, and I am really pleased for Jenson and Rubens and all the men and women who work in their team. They must have had a very difficult time over the winter, but it's great to see them come through and with what is looking like a great car. Jenson and Rubens deserve that because they are great drivers."

WBLG: Delving back in time

Perhaps inspired by the BBC re-broadcasting two classic F1 races, The Times has offered a selection of F1 articles from its archive.

There is always a special atmosphere in Melbourne

BMW say its KERS will be race-ready in Melbourne but may not use it.

F1’s week in the sun set to be overshadowed again

"Who cares about diffusers I hear you ask? Exactly. All this overshadows the actual sporting contest, which is what actually matters."

Toyota set for 'best season ever', but is there trouble ahead?

"Toyota is prepared for this, however, and has taken a few different diffusers to Australia just in case they are forced to change it and revert to plan B."

Webber lends support to fire victims

"On his first trip back home to Australia since the devastation, Webber made a private visit to the areas of St. Andrews and Kinglake to meet locals who had suffered in the fires."

Renault drivers' sallaries decreased

"The two Renault drivers are due to take a pay cut this year, following a request from Team Principal Flavio Briatore."

F1 cars arrive at Albert Park

News story shows F1 cars arriving at Melbourne for the first race of the year.

"Sir Frank Williams quietly confident ahead of new F1 season"

"He has dodged bailiffs and gone on to take multiple world titles; he suffered a life-threatening car accident in 1986, leaving him wheelchair-bound, only to up his work rate and his ambition. He is a born survivor."

These are links I’ve bookmarked using Delicious. You can see my Delicious profile here.

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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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7 comments on “F1 news round-up: 26th March”

  1. Hi Keith, apologies if I’ve missed this elsewhere on your site, but the BBC website is quoting Bernie as saying there will be 3 new teams in 2010 – a 26 car grid!

    Obviously one is the US team, but do we know who the other two might be?

    1. No, but a good place to start might be the dozen or so who applied to compete when the FIA tried to bring the customer car regulations back. Then you’re looking at Prodrive, various GP2 teams and others.

  2. Interesting for Bernie to say that. 3 new teams? We’ve already heard of USF1, so thats one. I believe the second team could well be Dave Richards’ Prodrive. The third one is as good anyone’s guess.

    Hyundai we’re making all the right noises about wanting to join F1. Plus, they’re one of few large scale automakers (5th largest gloabally) that are least affected by the crisis. Since they are rapidly expanding their brands, which includes KIA, in western markets, F1 could well be the best vehicle for it. Korean cars have been streotyped as cheap crude cars, F1 will gain them more credibility in the market, as a “proper” car. Money wouldn’t a problem for them as they are South Korea’s biggest company. With the Korean GP coming up soon, substantial funding would be available from local sponsors, possibly even the Korean state. It could also serve as advertisement for all the different factions of the Hyundai Conglomerate that stretches from construction to heavy industries.

    Also, lets not forget that Richard Branson expressed an interest in entering the sport, given the “right circumstances”. With cost cuts and “greener” tech in use, the Virgin brand may well set up a team. As we discussed before, it would only add to their brand appeal.

    My guess, the 3 teams would be USF1, Prodrive Aston Martin, Hyundai or Virgin…maybe Virgin Hyundai F1 perhaps?

    1. Looks like Virgin have other plans: Virgin to sponsor Brawn GP?

  3. I keep wondering why Ferrari haven’t given Rob Smedley a PR role by now, since he is so good….

    1. Probably because he’s an even better race engineer!

  4. Unless Bernie includes current teams being taken over, such as Toro Rosso, I doubt we will see 3 new teams next year.

    Also isn’t the limit set at 24 car grids. I think I recall Bernie saying he would mind pre-qualifying to return so this would solve that issue, but if a team was reguarly not qualifying for the race they wouldn’t stay in F1 very long.

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