F1 Fanatic round-up: 24/9/2010

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“F1 2010” is officially on sale and several F1 Fanatic readers already have copies. If you’ve bought it send in your review by email along with a five star rating and a selection of the best will be used in an article soon.

Practice for the Singapore Grand Prix begins today so remember to join us during the sessions for live comments.

Here’s today’s round-up:


Singapore GP – Conference 1 (FIA)

Mark Webber on his relationship with Sebastian Vettel: “Actually, not a lot has changed to be honest, since we started working a few years ago. It’s always been reasonably tight between both of us. The team is doing its absolute utmost to give us both the same opportunities to get the results done, which is the case: to try and beat Ferrari and McLaren week in, week out. To do that, you need to be performing collectively as a group all the time. Seriously, it hasn’t changed too much.”

Ecclestone in new medals push (Crash)

“If you look at the points system, it’s made absolutely no difference. If we’d used the old points system it would be exactly the same position, which is strange. Maybe they’ll wake up and think about my gold medals – because Mark would have four gold medals now and there would be two other guys with three, so the championship would go all the way to the wire. They’ll see now what could happen.”

Schumacher insists he will not leave (Autosport)

“You cannot get rid of me, let’s put it this way.”

Comment of the day

I’m giving COTD to Ned Flanders for this gem:

I think the Pirelli test team ought to be the 13th team next season. They’ve got two half decent drivers, a good Toyota customer package and, of course, plenty of experience on the new tyres. They’d be a decent outside bet for the championship I think!
Ned Flanders

From the forum

The problems with the construction of the Commonwealth Games site in India do not bode well for next year’s Grand Prix.

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to Selidor – hope you have a good one!

On this day in F1

F1’s last attempt to crack America began on this day ten years ago with the first of eight races on a newly-built road circuit at Indianapolis.

The race played a decisive role in the outcome of that year’s championship battle as Mika Hakkinen’s McLaren stopped while he was catching leader and title rival Michael Schumacher:

Schumacher won the race after a harmless spin, and Hakkinen’s two-point championship lead going into the American round was turned into an eight-point deficit with two races remaining.

Author information

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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56 comments on “F1 Fanatic round-up: 24/9/2010”

  1. Can’t believe that Ecclestone is still campaigning for his medals. Possibly the closest ever championship we’ve ever had with 5 races still to go (not sure of the exact figures but somebody here will). The points system is working just fine, thank you very much Mr Bernie!

    1. He is right though, it’s made no difference, the top 5 would be covered by something like 9 points in “old money”.

    2. If we awarded no points until the last race, it would be the closest ever championship in history! What do you reckon Bernie? :)

      1. Maybe we could hold a singing competition after the final race, and the winner of that gets to be champion.

        1. I like my idea from the last time this came up. In the event of a tie in medals a 2-man sack race will be held on the last circuit. Medals will be awarded to the fastest through each sector of the track (across 1 lap) and then the race will be repeated with the person with the most medals having 5kg ballast. This will be repeated until one person has their sack filled with medals (and ballast), at which point he will be announced formula 1 world champion (assuming that his points total from the season is more than his competitor, otherwise the race is reheld to make doubly sure he is deserving).

    3. And his claim it would be somehow even more close is nonsense, as his system would mean Button and Vettel to be a lot further away from the title with only 2 wins (by the way it would make the Hockenheim debacle look even worse!).

      And there is a difference in points. Now Webber is clearly in front with 4 wins, i think with last years system Hamilton would be equal on points (not sure i counted right though).

      1. Any chance we could have a poll to see how pop-errr I mean- unpopular the medal idea actually is?

  2. Surely this is the worst time for Bernie to push for the medals? This year has been one of the best seasons in a long time, if anything I would be expecting him to praise himself for changing the points and leaving us in the situation we are in (although it probably would have been just as tight with last years points).

    Also his point is completely invalid, if Webber wins this weekend then Hamilton or Alonso would have to win all the remaining races to take the crown off him. This could effectively mean the championship could be over by Korea which I doubt will happen under the points system. Not exactly going down to the wire is it?

    Bernie needs to stop trying to fix things that arent broken and pay some attention fixing the things that are really damaging F1.

    1. Under Bernie’s medal system, Jenson Button and Sebastian Vettel would need two wins to pass Mark Webber.

      Under the current points system, Jenson Button and Sebastian Vettel will still need two wins to take the lead of the championship unless everyone else falls off the road.

      1. Actually, under Bernie’s medal system, even Jerome d’Ambrosio could be a champion ;)

    2. Also his point is completely invalid, if Webber wins this weekend then Hamilton or Alonso would have to win all the remaining races to take the crown off him.

      Under the medals system, you mean?

      If so, that’s not right: if Webber won this weekend Hamilton and Alonso would have to win two races to catch up with him, which they match with two races to spare.

      Hamilton currently has more second places finishes than Webber, so in that scenario two wins could be enough to put him ahead, likewise Alonso has more fourth place finishes (and the same number of seconds and thirds).

      I like the “most wins” idea, though I’m not keen on the idea of dressing it up with some kind of Olympics-style “medals”. True, it would reward consistency less, but I think consistency is over-rewarded at the moment.

      1. Sorry I completely forgot about Korea! I know it was only midnight but I was knackered.

        Forget what I said then, I wrote it thinking there were only 4 races left to go

  3. Apparently Max Mosley is going to be on Question Time (UK) in the coming weeks. I think it’s 2 weeks away.

    1. Yeah, sorta looking forward to that — I’m sure he’ll be a very interesting guest, but I’m not sure where he sits politically so I’ll just predict his main contribution will be talking about invasions of privacy by the press. I hope to god nobody asks about his Dad or son.

      (Gotta admit though I’m secretly hoping a new F1 scandal breaks on the race weekend before his appearance so he can talk about that too)

      1. Woohoo! Group Lotus v Team Lotus has arrived!

  4. “Seriously, it hasn’t changed too much.”

    This is lies Mr Webber.

    1. A very diplomatic answer to what I’m guessing was a probing question. I think that translates to the following:

      “I can’t stand the guy. He is my number one opponent. Realistically, for me to achieve the number one goal in my life I must first be able to beat this guy to stand a chance, and this is probably my only chance. What do you expect, hugs and tea parties?”

      1. But that does not say anything has changed, does it.

        For all we know Webber thinks Vettel is a kid with his nose way up but super quick in the car next to him since 2 years. But he knew Vettel made stupid mistakes, remember, the first Red Bull to win might have been Webber, if Vettel had not crashed into him behind the safetycar.
        And the team clearly favours him (guided im for years AND he gave them their first win)

        It does not mean they cannot work together to improve the car and it did not have to change during the last 2 years.

        1. Yea, valid. But theres a point in everyones life where personal gain by fair outweighs all other priorities. I think we are getting very close to that point with these two individuals.

    2. Actually, Macca, I suspect a lot of the Webber-Vettel relationship has been blow way out of proportion by the media. If Webber has a poor relationship with anyone, it would be the team. They’re the ones who blamed him for the incident in Istanbul, and they’re the ones who switched the front wings at Silverstone. Vettel didn’t have anything to do (at least not directly) with the team’s reactions.

      1. I don’t think it’s the front wing fiasco that is the problem between the two. It’s more just a clash of personality.

        You might say that the media has blown it up but thats not the feeling I get from his Australain based interviews where he is generaly more relaxed and less politicaly correct.

  5. Way to go Schumi, that’s how you answer question.

  6. mika’s bad luck reminds one of kimi’s bad luck w/ mclaren. i hope it is not an ominous precursor to singapore.

  7. Page 3 of the Sydney Morning Heralds’ DriveLife supplement today has some interesting info. Unfortunately it’s all figures of the numerical variety and not the soft curvy variety.

    The top 5 highest paid F1 drivers, in reverse order are:

    5. Button – $12m

    4. Massa – $19m

    3. Kimi – $22m (not really sure if this should count, seeing as he’s being specifically paid to not drive)

    2. Hamilton – $22m

    and the winner is…


    Seriously, nearly double the 2nd highest. Wow. No wonder Massa had to move over, think of the dollars per point he’s costing them.

    (I think the numbers are in AUD, but could be USD – exchange is 0.95 at the moment, so not much in it either way).

    1. Just got me thinking. Here’s the breakdown of the points/dollar for these four using the championship standings as of Monza (obviously excluding Kimi…)

      Also in reverse order for value for money:

      4. Alonso – $247k per point

      3. Massa – $153k per point

      2. Hamilton – $121k per point

      1. Button – $73k per point

      Be interesting to see how the rest of the field stacks up. I’m pretty confident Webber and Vettel will top the list. Anyone have info on the other drivers salaries?

      1. I found the info (really busy at work today, last day before holiday, woo! Actually, I am really busy, I’m just being slack, it’s friday afternoon and it’s been a tough week. Fiji here I come, woo!)

        Here’s the full table, in best value order:

        Driver Salary Pts $1000's per Pt
        Sutil $273,333 45 6.0
        Vettel $2,733,333 163 16.8
        Liuzzi $273,333 13 21.0
        Petrov $546,666 19 28.8
        Webber $5,740,000 187 30.7
        Kobayashi $683,333 21 32.5
        Hülkenberg $956,666 16 59.8
        Button $12,300,000 165 74.6
        Buemi $546,666 7 78.1
        Kubica $10,250,000 108 94.9
        Rosberg $10,933,333 112 97.6
        PDR $683,333 6 113.9
        Hamilton $21,866,666 182 120.1
        Massa $19,133,333 124 154.3
        Alguersuari $546,666 3 182.2
        Schumacher $10,933,333 46 237.7
        Barrichello $7,516,666 31 242.5
        Alonso $41,000,000 166 247.0
        Chandhok $0 0 0.0
        Yamamoto $0 0 0.0
        Senna $205,000 0 0.0
        Di Grassi $273,333 0 0.0
        Glock $1,366,666 0 0.0
        Kovalainen $2,733,333 0 0.0
        Trulli $4,100,000 0 0.0

        Sutil is _cheap!_

        The Red Bull boys are best value of the big guns, no surprise there.

        Some of the new guys look pretty good value, be interesting to see what salary they command next season.

        Barrichello is expensive, but I guess you’re paying for his experience as much as his performance.

        Salary info taken from articel on crash.net, http://www.crash.net/f1/news/162562/1/f1_2010_driver_salaries_revealed__who_earns_most.html

        Apologies if they layout doesn’t quite work, not sure what formatting can be applied in these comments.

        1. oh, er, the layout really didnt work at all!

          Simplified version…

          $1000’s per point:

          6 Sutil
          17 Vettel
          21 Liuzzi
          29 Petrov
          31 Webber
          33 Kobayashi
          60 Hülkenberg
          75 Button
          78 Buemi
          95 Kubica
          98 Rosberg
          114 PDR
          120 Hamilton
          154 Massa
          182 Alguersuari
          238 Schumacher
          242 Barrichello
          247 Alonso
          0 Chandhok
          0 Yamamoto
          0 Senna
          0 Di Grassi
          0 Glock
          0 Kovalainen
          0 Trulli

          1. I’ll stop talking to myself now…

          2. Haha, nice little one way conversation you’ve just had! Thanks for all the info! I doubt very much that Sutil actually gets paid as little as that though

        2. 40mil is a lot….

          Rubens made next to nothing at Brawn so it kinda makes up for it eh?

          I have some questions, Alonso’s 40mil, paid directly from Ferrari? or does that come from other sources? Santander for example.

          Also, isn’t 40mil more than HRT’s entire budget?

          1. yeah, I was wondering about Ferrari’s driver budget.

            Including Kimi, that’s $80m just for the drivers… what was that budget cap again?

          2. Ferrari are spending soooo much money on drivers. No wonder they were opposed to the budget cap…

          3. Drivers were never going to be part of the budget cap even if it had been introduced.

    2. They don’t get paid based on performance alone. The market and sponsorship value plays a large part.

      Also the Red Bull drivers have a large performance based component on their salaries, so I wouldn’t be surprised if taking the championship for Vettel or Webber would put them up above the $12M mark. (IIRC correctly their base is $6M and 60-70% of the total on top is performance).

  8. Another interesting snippet in the SMH DriveLife today…

    Adrian Newey has supposedly designed the ultimate racing car for Gran Turismo 5. The interestingly named X1 Prototype.

    They dont have any details about this theoretical car, Newey says “We all have a dream about pushing the boundaries, where the performance of the car and the experience of the driver take precedence over the rules… and, as a result the X1 prototype is dynamite to drive.”

    Love to see what it looks like, and whether it has any of the features of the RB6…

    1. This has been around for about a week or two now. There are no images of the car; just vague teaser shots. A full shot won’t be available until the game is released in November. The car looks nothing like the RB6 and has none of its features. Kazunori Yamauchi – the creator of the Gran Turismo series – appeaoched Adrian Newey and practically gave him a blank sheet of paper and said “go nuts”. The Polyphony X1 Prototype is designed to be the perfect racing car, built without any restrictions whatsoever because there were no rules dictating what could or could not be done. It bears no resemblance to the RB6 whatsoever, aside from the fact that it is a single-seat racing car. It actually looks like a Formula 1/Le Mans Prototype hybrid with a closed cockpit. Sebastian Vettel took it for a shakedown on a lap of Suzuka in the finished build of the game and broke the lap record by twenty seconds.

      1. When I say “features” I don’t necessarily mean will it look like it, more does it have EBD (maybe, or at least as part of ground effect), flexi aero (probably not because I suspect it would use full ground effect, pull rod suspension…

  9. Have a nice birthday Selidor. Maybe some Singapore FP watching today?

    1. As much as possible between lectures :)

  10. I watched the Jenson Button interview this morning on BBC News, his thoughts on the title race was very interesting, he says which ever one of the five wins the title deserves it. Is that really true? Does Vettel deserve the title after his incidents in Belgium, Turkey and Hungary? Does Button deserve it after his average/dismal performances in Bahrain, Monaco, Hungary? And Hamilton? Does he deserve it after Italy, Hungary? And what about Alonso? Mistakes in Monaco practice, (despite a super race pace) China and the disputable Silvertone race? And that just leaves Webber. He has made the fewest mistakes, so does he deserve the title more?

    1. Come on now, Hamilton broke down in Hungary :/

    2. As for Button, Bahrain was his first race for Mclaren, and we know he has to have everything perfect, it was probably just becuase he was integrating into the team! The team made an error in Monaco on his behalf so it’s hardly Button’s blame – he has to trust the team because the driver can’t go over the whole car to check it!

    3. What about Webber driving into the back of people, Hamilton in OZ, Kov in Valencia. Yeap they all make mistakes, except Button. Oh you also forgot Alonso at Spa, wrong set-up choice and a nice little spin. ;-)

      Only one race mistake for Hamilton (you could count qualifying in Monza) race in Monza

    4. Webber has hardly been flawless either. Somersaulting the RB6 and giving everyone a nice view of the EBD arrangement, as well as his poor starts of late.

      In terms of mistakes I’d say Lewis, Mark and Jenson have made less than Alonso and Vettel, but between those 3 there’s probably not much in it.

      But, in all honesty, if you can make those mistakes and _still_ win the championship, then fair play really.

    5. I think he is right in saying anyone who wins it will deserve (with a reservation made for Alonso having to win it by more than 7 points to do so).

      After making a lot of mistakes, if Vettel would now consistently rake in the wins and podiums, why would he not deserve it?

      It is a whole year fight and everyone of them had superb races as well as cock ups in varying degree. That’s part of the exitement.

  11. Hi,

    Further to sumedh’s post in the round up a couple of days ago, do yow have to register first on http://www.f1zone.net to see the videos, or is there a link? I may be being monumentally daft and missing something obvious, but I can’t find it.

    Also, on another topic, I’ve been reading the excellent book review section, and would like to know if any of the books are available electronically. This is because I have a Sony Reader, and it would take up much less space to have them on that than buying the paper books.

    Any help on either question much appreciated.



    1. Sorry annoying typo ‘you’ not ‘yow’ stupid keyboard lol!


    1. If true, it sounds more like the “usual” Kolles argument for changing things (like Senna breaking some team rule in Silverstone) than a real issue.

      Or the food poisoning is true and Kolles just took a chance given to get some driving money out of Klien this weekend (or would he like to test him for next year?).

  12. The Hispania pit crew can breathe a sigh of relief as Yamomoto wont be competing this weekend as he has food poisoning. Christien Klien will take his place.

    1. Strange that Chandhok did not get the drive. Uncle Bernie will not be amused!!

  13. For all fans of Albert Park (i am one of them) you can be relaxed about the GP, after Melboune’s mayor confirmed it will stay there for the forseeable future.

  14. Portuguese and Swiss sources claim Jacues Villeneuve has approached Dietrich Mateschitz about buying Toro Rosso.

  15. Here’s a different view on team orders and how to arrange teams from the MotoGP world.

    Very interesting to think about the consequences.

  16. lol @ “You cannot get rid of me, let’s put it this way.”

  17. Today 24/09 was my 30th birthday… and 15 years ago, David Coulthard won his first race in Formula 1 in Estoril (Portugal) when he drove a Williams-Renault !!!!!!!

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