Michael wants Silverstone bumps eased

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Williams technical director Sam Michael said the bumps at Silverstone must be reduced before next year’s race.

Michael said:

The new layout was very bumpy. That improved as rubber was laid during the race, but it?s something that needs to be addressed for 2011.

On a positive note, I was impressed by how the new layout seemed to promote overtaking during the race.
Sam Michael

Rubens Barrichello complained about the bumps after practice as did some other drivers.

However the track was also criticised for being too bumpy before the recent upgrade work. In 2007 Massa warned “they really need to resurface it straight away otherwise we will have trouble.”

Michael added he was happy with Barrichello’s contribution to the development of the car so far but there was still a lot of work to do:

Rubens is doing a great job driving our development programme as well as delivering strong qualifying performances and race results. We are very satisfied with his contribution to the team as a whole and specifically with the role he is playing when it comes to which direction we take with the car.

We aren?t happy with our first half performance, it hasn?t been good enough. We’re playing development catch-up with the whole car package. That work does seem to be paying off now, but there’s still a lot more work to do.
Sam Michael

2010 British Grand Prix

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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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32 comments on “Michael wants Silverstone bumps eased”

  1. It’s not something I would usually support, but I think if the big bumps at turn 11 would be resurfaced it would make it an easier corner(which is not a good thing in itself), but that would help cars to follow more closely going into the new section helping to provide even more overtaking opportunities.

    1. miguelF1O (@)
      13th July 2010, 23:08

      yes and next year with the prospect of less overall downforce bumps would be even trickier its all about the corners and this new silverstone has the corners they just need to refine it cause it wasnt what i excpected on the overtaking side

  2. A lot of the overtaking going on was due to the iregular exits created by the bump at Abbey, it forced drivers onto different lines an played a major role in bringing the enitre third sector and Copse into play as an area where overtaking could go on, they’d be mad to get rid of it. Besides the amount of run off surrounding the new Abbey means it’s not dangerous if the drivers get thrown off a little bit.

    1. I think your completely right there, but they might still resurface it as the MotoGP guys had a lot of complaints as well.

  3. Leave it as it is.

    They are paid to be the best drivers in the world. They should be able to cope with a few bumps. Sure they might be a bit rattled after the race but they train for this sport so they’ll recover.

    The bumps don’t need to be levelled out. The drivers need to focus harder on getting the corner right. Its the same for all of them.

  4. OK, how many thought the headline meant Schumacher?

    No, they should just leave it as it is, it will sort itself out over the next few years.

    1. I thought it meant Michael and was really disappointed. Was glad to see it didn’t. I think the bumps should remain. It made for more interesting racing.

    2. I thought it did too. :-))
      Then as I was reading along now got to where Micheal was appreciating Barichello’s development of the car, then I was thinking, surely shumacher must have some form of dementia. :-)

      1. I thought it was Schumi too and for a while also like Oliver. I don’t know why but I foetn do it whenever it’s Sam Michael. I really should learn to take extra care when reading by now

    3. Yeah, me too – great headline! The Mercedes must have a smoother ride…not that I’m suggesting they make old man’s cars.

    4. Then it would have been “Schumacher wants Silverstone bumps eased”…

      1. I suppose something like Williams’ Sam Michael, or just Sam Michael, because even though we always refer to them by surname, I also thought it meant Schumi!

      2. More often than not, its the drivers who complain about bumps, so you can understand why we went into the article with that mind set. Its all to do with psychology.

  5. They should stop moaning. They’re supposed to be the best drivers in the world I think they can handle a little bump. Its great to see a curcuit that has a challenge built into it for once rather than the usual sterile Tilke-dromes. Keep the bump and if they want to change it they should replace the run off with gravel.

  6. Electrolite
    13th July 2010, 0:11

    I think after driving on the baby’s bottom that is Valencia the track certainly rattled them a bit.

  7. *grumble grumble*

    Stop asking for the perfect racetrack and just drive it the best you can!!

  8. Leave the bumps there.
    If there’s a bump, maybe that will force people to raise their ride heights or hesitate when taking the corner, allowing the ballsiest drivers to benefit.

    1. I’d like to see a minimum ride height rule introduced along with Titanium skid blocks:


    2. Has nothing to do with ride height. If you are on the limit and you hit a bump at a bend, you are simply going off track.

      1. Except large ride height means more suspension travel, and more suspension travel means bigger bumps can be accommodated while still keeping the tyre in contact with the ground, so ride height does have something to do with it :)

  9. They could always just run a softer suspension setup!

    It’s not as if it’s like the 70s/80s on some of the temporary street circuits they used back then such as Detroit or Las Vegas.

    The problem is the teams develop their cars for billiard smooth circuits and then complain when the circuit isn’t as they want and their car doesn’t work as they want.

  10. Don’t remember him complaining about bumps when he was winning.maybe he should’ve quit while he was ahead. everyone thought he would be winning this year and i knew he would be just finishing in the points, however i also thought he may get a podium or two, but he’s even proving me wrong.

    1. Chalk up another one who thought the article was about Schumacher ;)

  11. It’s pretty funny how so many people don’t actually read the article, or did but completely missed who actually gave the quote and who/what the article is about, heh.

  12. This is true. i’m glad you read it.

  13. If the new 18″ wheels are introduced then the whole system of suspension that has been developed for these cars will have to change – maybe the fact that increased suspension travel will be essential for the new tyres will allow for slightly bumpier circuits without risking the drivers’ health or safety.

  14. @Pionir.
    Where are you going to find all that ride height on a modern F1 car? The greater the ride height, the higher the center of gravity. That alone will eat up many a tenths from the cars performance in a high speed corner.
    Plus no racing driver worth his salt wants to feel like he is driving a double decker bus!

    1. If you want more ride height, you just design it in by changing the suspension geometry. It’s not difficult :)

      The “eating up tenths” thing is irrelevant as the rules are the same for everyone. With a mandated minimum ride height, no-one gains/loses compared with anyone else. It’s exactly the same as when they cut downforce – they lose tenths but relative to each other it stays the same.

      As for the double decker bus syndrome, we’re talking maybe 10-20cm at most, so it’s hardly going to be noticable, plus they need to decide if they want comfort or the feeling of speed.

    2. Oliver – so what’s the problem? F1 is supposed to be difficult, they shouldn’t just go altering the tracks to make it easier to set-up the cars.

      1. Keith, I have no problem with either the track or the suspension geometry. All I was responding to was that, you lose some cornering speed when you increase ride height.
        And if Pionir is suggesting 10 – 20 cm!!! Even some road cars don’t have that much ride height.

        In saying that, I dont necessarily believe they need to alter any thing on the track. I just made a point, but didn’t condemn the track.

        1. Oh I see, sorry I misunderstood you.

        2. With the speed bumps around my way, a road car with 20cm ride height wouldn’t get very far :)

          However the point is that it’s an irrelevance if cars lose some cornering speed.

          The FIA is always trying to slow cars down by cutting downforce and even sometimes grip (with the old grooved tyres), so mandating a minimum ride height wouldn’t change the status quo but just offer a better alternative than resurfacing all the tracks.

          Personally I think the cars bouncing around Monaco is very spectacular and helps compensate for the fact the race is always dull with no overtaking.

          When they used to drive around the billiard table smooth Magny Cours, not only was the the racing dull, but the cars were boring to watch too.

          It’s also worth mentioning that Lewis has said he enjoyed the challenge of the bumps.

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