Button wants better post-race celebrations

F1 Fanatic round-up

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In the F1 Fanatic round-up: Jenson Button wants to be allowed to entertain the fans after winning races.


Top F1 links from the past 24 hours:

Button urges more contact with fans (The Independent)

“If I had my way, I’d make sure that after a race we could celebrate a victory better than we do now. The way it is with having to look after the engine because it’s got to do a certain number of races, and the gearbox, you can’t go and do doughnuts for the crowd. You can’t pick up a national flag. You can’t have the moments that Nigel Mansell had at Silverstone. And in your very moment of euphoria you are dragged away from the team, your family and friends.”

F1 about to step into the unknown (The Telegraph)

“Ecclestone, meanwhile, reportedly ‘swore and stormed off’ after a brief interview with AFP in the paddock on Sunday. ‘Do you think that if we cancel the Formula One that all the problems will just disappear?’ he said.”

Ecclestone and Todt will not heed warnings (The Times, subscription required)

“Jenny Wagstaff, one of the catering staff at Williams, has paid the price with her job. She has left the team after declaring that she did not want to go to Bahrain on ethical grounds. She departed ‘by mutual agreement’, according to the team. There are many more than Wagstaff who will have moral objections, never mind fears for their own safety.”

A Great Show in China, a Lingering Cloud Over Bahrain (New York Times)

“[Ross Brawn] tried to close off the discussion about Bahrain by saying that there were ‘many positives’ from going to Bahrain for the race. I was genuinely surprised and interested to hear what these ‘positives’ were, so I asked very quickly before the subject changed. ‘I don’t want to get into a debate,’ said the director, Ross Brawn. He refused to tell me what the positives were.”

Bahrain opposition starts F1 protests week (AFP via Google News)

“Sunday’s protest was the first in a week of daily demonstrations and sit-ins called by Al-Wefaq, Bahrain’s largest Shiite bloc, planned to last through the end of the controversial Grand Prix race scheduled for April 22.”

Bahrain Grand Prix: Formula One demeans itself with this event (The Guardian)

“The drivers, sponsors and team owners who participate should consider that they will be giving cover to a violently human rights-abusing regime by their participation and will be seen by many Bahrainis and others as accomplices in those continuing abuses.” Read my comment on this article.

F1 Fanatic Live via Twitter

Sebastian Vettel [on team radio]: “We had absolutely no straight line speed the whole race. Ridiculous.”

Chinese GP – Conference 4 (FIA)

Jenson Button: “It was a big gap to chase down but before the stop, we had very good pace on new and old tyres so I don’t know. That was our aim but it didn’t go to plan, but we had a problem at the pit stop which cost us a lot of time – it didn’t just cost us time, it cost us places as well, so it made it very difficult to have the possibility to chase down Nico [Rosberg]. But that’s the way it is.”

Hamilton: Penalty cost me win chance (Autosport)

“I am sure we’d have given Nico a run for his money but the traffic we had and the amount of pit stops was incredible.”

Comment of the day

Some interesting views on the race plus a random fact on Switzerland from Shimks:

Brilliant pole and win from Rosberg. I wonder if Mercedes are very happy that things didn’t go to plan in their first two races? If the FIA had seen how much potential that car has for leaving the others in the dust, maybe their wing would have been banned – especially if Bernie had interfered. I can see Mercedes running away with the championship a la Brawn ’09 if they keep adding significant updates to the car. Or am I getting too excited and carried away?

Button showed class again today. He really is consistently looking better that Hamilton at the moment. I love Button – literately: I’ve got his picture above my bed – but I am very surprised at what has happened to Hamilton. He used to be so awesomely quick.

Finally, a great shame for Sauber. It looked like Kobayashi couldn’t get any temperature into his tyres. He looked average out their today which we all know is not true. So has Peter Sauber already handed over the mantle to Monisha Kaltenborn? He stayed in Switzerland this weekend for this Monday’s Sechsel??uten holiday in Z???rich, where we burn a snowman to death to bring in the Spring!

From the forum

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On this day in F1

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Image © McLaren/Hoch Zwei

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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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136 comments on “Button wants better post-race celebrations”

  1. Couldn’t agree more. Massa did it in Brazil last year and it was EPIC. One can understand the driver’s reasons (lots of burnouts can blow up the engine and you don’t have a lot of them for the year), but before the engines number limitation the FIA already didn’t like doughnuts. NASCAR and sometimes Indycar or some touring car series have these amazing celebrations and nothing bad happens. Furthermore, it’s a bonus to the spectacle.

    1. We all wish for the old celebrations, and you can tell the drivers wish for the same! Must be hard to not be able to have some fun. It would be so great to see the drives let loose and give the crowd a show!

      1. Woolmark tractor! The ayes have it.

    2. I hadn’t thought back to my early days of watching F1, but now that it’s been brought up, I really do miss seeing the flags and the celebrations we used to get. I sincerely doubt any of the viewers – at home or at the track – would at all mind waiting a bit longer for the podium and press conference if it meant we got to see some of those again.

    3. I miss the days where drivers waved a flag of their country when they won.

      More celebrations are needed like Helio Castroneves does in Indy Car. They are the moments fans remember forever.

    4. At silverstone in 2001 Jean Alesi did a donut right in front of me in his Prost. He got a ********** from the BRDC because it damages the track surface apparently.

      1. Alesi was a rebel, the coolest driver ever. Another example was Canada 01, he did some burnouts and threw his helmet for the crowd. He was simply awesome, and deserved way more than he got.

  2. I am very surprised at what has happened to Hamilton. He used to be so awesomely quick

    Me too. I never would of thought Button would beat him so often when he first joined the team. Saying as it´s only really since 2011 that Button has been on top you´d have to assume it´s something to do with the Pirelli tyres.

    Let´s not go too far though. After all he is leading the championship! What Hamilton has lacked since 2007 has been consistency, and it looks like he´s finally got some, even if it is coming at the expense of race pace

    1. Well he’s still much faster than Jenson in qualifying. And he did have very impressive consistency in 2010.

      1. but not in the race where it matters

        1. I think he was quicker than Jenson in the end of the race.

          1. They had the same pace. Jenson was quicker than Hamilton only when Hamilton was held up by the quick-in-straight-line Sauber, but once Hamilton got clean air, they had the same pace again.

      2. Qualifying these days doesn´t seem to matter that much though. That´s a shame I think, though perhaps I´m wearing my rose tinted glasses when I say that…

        1. In normal days (no rain, no SC) it seems a good chance to win the big prize, just ask Rosberg and “Vettel v.2011”.

      3. We always have the strongest arguments over drivers performance when there’s little to choose between the two – much like with Hamilton and Alonso over the course of 2007.

        There’s not much in it between the two McLaren drivers at the moment. Right now I’d say Hamilton has an edge in qualifying, Button has shown better race pace:

        Jenson Button 2012 form guide

        But keep in mind that without Hamilton’s gearbox penalty in China the race gap would look even closer.

        1. Yep. People have forgotten that Lewis qualified on the 1st row of the grid, as compared to Jenson on the 3rd row. If Lewis didnt have the penalty, he would have finished ahead of Jenson for a 2nd race in a row.

          IMHO, Lewis has been in a bit of a slump since last year. Once he gets out of it, he should be dominating Jenson like he did in 2010.

          1. That’s a fair point. Lewis would probably have won that race. It was good drives from both mclaren drivers. In the same vein, if Button had not had his accident in Malaysia, he’d be leading the WDC standings.

        2. And this is probably the most interesting line up as they are both quick and very close, and the most important McLaren let them race against each other without any preference. That’s probably the best we can ask for from a top team …

          Still not the same at RedBull despite the great start of the season for Webber.

          That’s quite interesting to have a look to the past about team orders, lots of debates on the subject and I can’t read a word about the clear message to Massa to let Alonso go. Which was a very sensible decision to me, as they were definitly not racing each other as they were on different strategy … Couldn’t imagine how many articles we would have if it happened 2-3 years ago.

      4. lewis consistent in 2010? not that i remember, he would of been world champion had he not crashed 2 races in a row.

        he was most consistent in 07. which is by far his best season. Tho so far this year he is doing an excellent job IMO

        1. +1 to both points. I’d like to see him grab a few 2nd places and a few wins now though ;)

      5. yes he is…and so he should be. He is the younger and the one with more natural speed…Jenson is the thinking mans racer in the ilk of Alain Prost

    2. “I never would of thought” – it’s would’ve (would have), not would of! -.-‘

      1. You´re right. I´m hanging my head in shame

    3. I dont think anything has happened to Hamilton. I think he has realized the limitations he has with the Pirelli tyres. He looks like he is not going to drive the wheels of the car and rip his tyres to shreds as he used to do. He’s got a more focused outlook, I think he will pick his battles and look for consistency more than anything. To be fair, Hamilton has not had a consistent year for the last couple seasons, maybe its Didier Coton at work? My opinion, this is the best possible way for Lewis to start the season coming off the back of a few a poor years in terms of WDC performance.

      I believe that he has probably figured out the best way to beat Jenson is to play him at his own game..consistency.

    4. As others have said, when Lewis was in clear air he and Jenson were matched on pace. Unfortunately for Lewis every time he came out of the pits it was into traffic, whereas that only happened to Jenson after his problem tyre change.

      What I found more interesting is where the two of them did their overtakes. Most (all?) of Jenson’s were down the back straight using DRS, whereas Hamilton pulled some brave moves under braking in turns 5/6.

      1. Most (all?) of Jenson’s were down the back straight using DRS, whereas Hamilton pulled some brave moves under braking in turns 5/6.
        The wonders of selective memory… it was quite the other way around….also Button came into traffic after his 2nd pit stop but passed all the cars in a matter or 2-3 laps…

        1. I found it interesting not to compare their relative overtaking prowess (although I will confess to believing Hamilton being better there) but Button found it comparitively easy to pass in the DRS zone, having a much bigger speed differential than Hamilton did. Hamilton did mention that he comprimised his qualli setup with an eye on the race, so I have a feeling he may have been running a bit more wing than Button.

    5. People seem to be forgetting that Hamilton started 7th after a penalty. Looking at Button’s pace if Hamilton started 2nd there would be a good chance he would have won.

    6. It is just the tyres ,Lewis has lost confidence because every time he used his extra pace the tyres disintegrated under him and he went backwards. Jenson on the other hand is able to outperform the whole field and they both know it. Sad really, but Lewis unable to drive at his best just trundling around hoping to pick up low podiiums is the future I am afraid.

      1. I agree, you just have to look at Hamilton driving this year, his style has gone so far towards Button’s, very patient on the throttle and slow on the wheel.

      2. I’m not so sure this is the case. I think Button is just matching Lewis at the moment. Both of them are very competitive drivers.

      3. This analysis ignores the fact that Hamilton qualified four places in front of Button, but didn’t get the benefit because of the gearbox penalty.

        You might also have noted that Hamilton set his fastest Q3 time on softs he’d already used in Q2, so he was obliged to start the race on tyres that were 3 laps older than Button’s tyres.

        What this weekend underlined is just how narrow the performance peak of the Pirelli tyres is. Make a single mistake – or get a bit of bad luck with traffic – and you have little chance to recover.

    7. Shane (@shane-pinnell)
      16th April 2012, 18:39

      I cannot, for the life of me, understand why people don’t rate Button. Apart from his first two seasons he has regularly outperformed his teammates. He helped transform BAR/Honda/BrawnGP into a World Championship winning team. He took a while to get there, but he got there. He has also finished 1st, 2nd & 3rd in the WDC for three different teams.

      Hamilton is arguably the fastest guy on track (maybe Kimi once he gets the cobwebs cleared out), but being the fastest doesn’t win championships. It certainly plays it’s part, but so does dogged determination, a bit of opportunistic luck and an optimistic attitude.

    8. its because he’s having to drive slower to look after his tyres.
      button doesnt have to do that.its that simple.

    9. Everything has changed with Pirelli. Hamilton is faster, but that means nothing with the current tyres.

      Gone are the days of fightbacks from 16th to the podium. Overtaking might be easier, but the damage it does to the tyres make it impossible to go forward that much.

      Button got nowhere in Malaysia when he needed an extra stop after crashed into Karthikeyan.

      F1 racing is just completeyly different from what it was in the days when racers were the dominant species on track. Now it’s the “train track” drivers like Button, Vettel and Rosberg. I’d add Massa, but somehow he doesn’t seem to get on with the new tyres at all.

  3. Mercedes were Honda, they probably just got lucky… oh no wait – Mercedes were Brawn GP… aaaargh!!! :O

    This is what makes 2012 F1 so exciting, we don’t know who is going to be the one to beat next weekend! Will the hot race be too much for the Mercs, can the RBR and Mclarens show some good pace in high temps? I’d put my money on Perez and Button to shine in the sun but it’s just too hard to predict!

    I love it! :D :D

    If they nail the DRS and there are no interuptions in next weekends race it will be a fine Bahrain race!

  4. I can’t believe that Guardian article. Saying that F1 is not a sport and that F1 drivers are not athletes? Seriously? I really wish I could tell the guy who wrote this what some F1 drivers do to just ‘stay fit’ during the off-season. Whatever point he was trying to get across with his article fell completely flat after that display of ignorance.

    1. Its Motorsport :)

    2. Relax, it’s just a stricter definition of “sport” and “athlete”. It doesn’t necessarily negate the rest of what he says.

      1. The fact remains that in general F1 drivers are far more fit and disciplined than most “athletes”, and certainly more so than any single football player – who are called “athletes”.

  5. I disagree with part of the COTD, specifically this;

    Button […] really is consistently looking better that Hamilton at the moment.

    So far there have been three races, Button was definitely better in the Australian race, whereas I’d say Lewis was better in the Malaysian race last weekend. But for me today I would say it was very even considering they pretty much drove different races for the majority of the race. Added to the fact that Hamilton had received a five place grid penalty.

    I’d say they are two of the best drivers on the grid and very evenly matched, both with their pros and cons. With neither “consistently” looking better than the other, apart from in qualifying.

    1. I agree with the COTD. Button’s being much more consistent and he’s typically ahead of Hamilton.

      Penalization or not, he was quite far ahead of Lewis during the race, and he was pulling away nicely too. Ofc, Hami was relegated by being the one behind in terms of strategy, but still. Also, in Malaysia, before his crash with the HRT, Button was already ahead.

      1. Really. Button prevails in Australia. But in Malaysia Button got ahead on a pit stop, promptly smashed into the back of another car, and spend the rest of the race wandering in the midflied. If Hamilton had done such a thing, he would have been burned at the stake. We know the routine here. In China, Hamilton beat him again in qualifying, handily, and finishes on his tail after spotting him two grid places. He was only “quite far ahead” due to Hamilton repeatedly being dropped behind midfield rolling chicanes on his stops. This is the case for Button being somehow more consistent and better? I think this is the case for what people might feel compelled to say when they scotch-tape certain shampoo ads over their beds..

        1. How come Button has been more consistent? LH is leading the championship and is the only driver with three podium finishes. If it was him who clipped the HRT in Malaysia you (à la Lauda) would be calling for his ban because he’s reckless and bla bla bla.

          Button got past him once in T1 in Australia and drove a normal race from the best position to do it, then got past Hamilton after a pit error in Malaysia and should be 4 places behind Lewis starting the race in China wasn’t Lewis penalized for a GB change, which is a mechanical issue.

          I think Button is a very good driver but he needs to grab front row Q3s because winning a WDC with 3rd row starts will not be easy, if there’s one who needs to improve it’s Button, I think Lewis today is what so many people here has asked for in 2011…

        2. Sorry @dmw, my answer was to @fer-no65.

        3. I think this is the case for what people might feel compelled to say when they scotch-tape certain shampoo ads over their beds.

          Absolutely hilarious!! :O)

        4. I agree with you that it is a little early to decide who is being more consistent so far this year however your conveniently forgetting that Button had a pit stop problem with his rear left. If that had not happened he might have given Rosberg a run for his money and finished a long way ahead of Lewis.

          They are very closely matched, it should be an interesting year to watch.

          1. Hamilton had a delayed stop in Malaysia and a grid penalty in China.

      2. @fer-no65
        Oh come ON. Do people actually believe this?

        He is consistently looking better than Hamilton at the moment

        This is absolute rubbish. Hamilton is up 3-0 on Button in qualifying, with two pole positions. He outqualified Button by nearly .4 of a second in China. Admittedly, Button had a great race in Australia, but apart from that, their race pace was nearly identical. In Malaysia, Hamilton was lapping nearly 2 seconds per lap quicker in the wet at the beginning stages of the race, and Button, if I remember correctly, ruined his own race by crashing into a backmarker. Lewis could have absolutely won the race in China if it weren’t for his penalty, and yet he still manages to claw his way to third in the race. In fact, his race pace was better, discounting for the times he was stuck behind traffic, than Button’s.

        Button’s being much more consistent and he’s typically ahead of Hamilton

        Seriously? Button’s being more consistent? Last time I checked he has a win, a no-points finish, and a second place. Lewis has three consecutive third places and is leading the championship. How can you write that sentence with a straight face?

        1. 2 poles and 0 wins isn’t the sort of consistency I’d be happy with. And I’m sure Lewis would say the same.

    2. Great comment of the day.
      A praise of Button a slight of Hamilton. A win win situation for everybody.
      Lately there are always two races taking place on track or perhaps more.

      @ DaveW
      I always enjoy your humorous but mature way of putting things in the right perspective.

      I also wonder why there always is this unending fascination with comparing Button to Hamilton. I feel it is evidence of a form of insecurity.

  6. Couldn’t agree more with Button. It’s not only race celebrations, the F1 official website is very un-friendly.

    You look at Indycar’s website, and it looks modern with big pictures and all. Even the “Drivers” page have a little icon that links you to their official twitter and facebook sites. F1’s looks boring and it’s been the same for the last 7 years or so.

    F1 does a rubbish job in that way. To think Rossi pulled this one http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4m24pp3K2Vk and F1 drivers nowadays can’t do much other than just show a finger…

    1. At least with the F1 website you can easily find out what time a race starts, converted your timezone.

      1. I agree that is a very important feature of a racing series site Pinball. F1.com isn’t great, but it is at least pretty easy to know where to find what, and that’s important.

      2. I think you’re missing @fer-no65 ‘s point here…

      3. You could always use @keithcollantine ‘s F1Fanatic google calendar!

    2. I think F1 site is very informative and useful (live timing, technical analysis pieces) maybe a bit more interaction with drivers would help on the entertainment side. But I don’t think it’s that bad. As a photography enthusiast I really love f1.com’s gallery. If I could change something, it would be site’s layout, currently it looks a bit bureaucratic.

  7. u should what the Indian Ministry of sports thinks of F1. The old sports minister said that ‘we support human endeavour. F1 isn’t a sport, it is entertainment’. The new sports minister had showed signs of recognizing motorsports but nothing has changed after he was snubbed by the FMSCI and not invited to the indian gp. Although FMSCI is recognized by the govt, drivers do not receive benefits that other sportspersons receive @guilherme @dane-1

    1. Yeah, I know about that @malleshmagdum – I remember the old minister was talking about it sometime around 2009, but I got the feeling that he was just attacking F1 because the deal to hold the Indian GP was being discussed.

      I think it is pretty sad, really, that a Minister of Sports thinks that motorsport is not a sport. Whichever definition of sport you look at, motorsport fits in perfectly, but I guess it is seen as an elitist sport, something that is not available to everyone, but so are many other sports in the world.

    2. @malleshmagdum I remember that – in fact I wrote about it at the time:

      F1: not just a sport

      1. @keithcollantine see my comment below. Thats sums up Indian Govt’s objective behind the issue

    3. F1 isn’t a sport, it is entertainment’

      I think he’s confused F1 for pro wrestling.

      1. Whoops, used the wrong tags.

  8. @guilherme @dane-1 the problem is that in India nobody knows that F1 drivers are the fittest ppl. The general consensus is that ‘why require fitness to drive around a track’. The reason the Indian govt is against recognizing F1 is that all sports in India receive tax benefits. For instance unlike other sports, f1 tickets have an entertainment tax on em. Plus F1 equipment carries a refundable tax. F1 drivers’ salaries are taxed. All this would not be possible if f1 was recognized as a sport. There was a similar problem with the Indian Premier League too, and now the tournament has been declared as an entmnt. And motorsports remains an elitist sport. Ticket prices are unaffordable and getting into motorsports is crazily expensive.

    1. @malleshmagdum, Im not sure if just being fit classifies as sport. Darts, fishing & golf come to mind & they aren’t the biggest sports where fitness is required. (Though fitter ppl would generally be better i guess).
      Personally, I think F1 is sport :)

      1. Probably because they are past times rather than sport…

  9. I didn’t know there weren’t allowed to pick national flags. Why is that?
    And yes, I agree with Button. Let them celebrate!

    1. I didn’t know there weren’t allowed to pick national flags. Why is that?

      For the same reason they’re not allowed to do doughnuts, etc… – FOM want to get them back into the pits as quickly as possible for the podium and press conference.

      Here’s the rule from the sporting regulations:

      43.3 After receiving the end‐of‐race signal all cars must proceed on the circuit directly to the post race parc fermé without any unnecessary delay, without receiving any object whatsoever and without any assistance (except that of the marshals if necessary).

      1. @keithcollantine – on the subject of national flags, wasn’t there some concern raised about the possibility of drivers picking up objects (like flags) from marshalls and fans (the days of post-race track invasions also appear to be long gone) in order to bring their cars up to the minimum weight? It would be fairly difficult to pull off in practice, but I understood that to be at least part of the reasoning.

        Weight is another reason why more drivers don’t perform doughnuts in defiance of the FIA – burning through that much rubber could drop the car below the minimum weight. Perhaps the regulations should incorporate a weight credit for any race winner who performs doughnuts? One for the Technical Working Group to investigate…

        1. I say a doughnut for each doughnut. Tastes better than a weight credit. It’ll show up on the driver’s weight, not the car, but that’s not a problem.

          1. Lawl agreed.

  10. Vettel is really showing his true persona, when he doesn’t have it his way he is horrible to everyone it seems.

    He really is the Crykid.

    1. @t3x – You’re really reading that much into Vettel’s comment? You don’t think it could simply be a case of Vettel being bewildered by the complete lack of speed in his car? After all, it’s a radio transmission that was not broadcast during the race, so we have no idea exactly how he was feeling at the time because we cannot tell what his tone was. There are plenty of possible explanations for his comments, very few of which assume he was having a whinge.

      Personally, I think you’re looking for reasons to dislike him.

      1. Actually, it was broadcast during the race @prisoner-monkeys, not too long before Raikkonen started to drop away if I recall correctly. At that point, Vettel had been doing most of his stint trying to pass the Fin, and couldn’t. That probably has something to do with his annoyance in the radio call (which was clearly there).

        I guess if he had listened to Webber’s debriefs last year, he would have been less surprised at it as top speed was never their strong point. But only now that he can’t qualify ahead is it really starting to affect him.

        Not really surprising he’s not happy with it. It’s not dissimilar to Hamilton being annoyed at being stuck behind Schumacher at Monza last year, constantly getting rev-limiter on the straight with DRS.

        1. Maybe Australia had ads then.

          Anyway, the commentators pointed out that Raikkonen was using all of his KERS to defend on the straight, and that the Red Bull was the slowest car through the speed traps (which the team already knew), so that probably had something to do with it. I don’t think it has anything to do with Vettel being a crybaby – rather, I think it’s more of a commentary on the feeling at Red Bull right now: the expected to be up the front, and right now, they’re probably fourth on the road behind McLaren, Mercedes and Lotus.

          1. @prisoner-monkeys I think it was only on the pit channel, not the world feed. And it was after the end of the race, so a lot of people may have stopped listening by then.

          2. @keithcollantine – Well, I don’t get any access to any of that.

          3. Drivers really need to watch what they say both on the radio and in the press. They should be especially careful not to show even a hint of frustration at any time, and they should not offer any opinion about the performance of the car. These are things that should be discussed entirely in private with the engineers. In public, a simple “For sure it was a good result for the team” will more than suffice.

      2. @prisoner-monkeys,

        I don’t think we will ever know how a driver is “exactly feeling” while talking to his team on the radio, but it should not prevent us from making an assessment., should it?

        I too think it’s not crime to feel frustrated when you see your car cannot compete and it’s like a sitting duck, unlike his harsh words in Malaysia I don’t think he said anything to be ashamed of in China.

      3. @prisoner-monkeys, i don’t care what you think, it is my opinion.

        1. @t3x I agree with you. I think the ‘Ridiculous’ was aimed at both the tyre strategy (as he said they were completely gone) and the car in general.

          I’m quite enjoying it, to be honest, funny seeing people who criticised Hamilton in ’09 now defending Vettel over basically the same thing.

    2. No – he’s not a cry baby. And all this bashing is getting really really old. Vettel’s race was superb from my perspective. From 11th to 5th is a great way to get back in the championship.

      I also appreciate that he doesn’t bring an entourage to all races including: girlfriend, girlfriend’ sister, dad like Button does. In fact I’m a bit putt off by Button’s wanting to celebrate more. Next thing it will be third cousins.

      Some people are so put off by Vettel’s finger and attitude in the races that they miss his other professional qualities such as: being always and totally focused on f1, able to crack good jokes, keeping personal issues outside of the sport, and finally being solely responsible for is putting himself in a position to drive an Adrian Newey car.

      1. This. Vettel bashing is getting annoying. Guy is a Double WDC ofcourse he isn’t going to be happy with a car that can’t overtake – look how long it took Webber to overtake people when he was on better tyres. Point is, people like to have a rip at him and call him spoilt because he won his second WDC in style and with speed to spare, but its not like the others didn’t have the technology he had, it was up to them to stop him and they couldn’t, starting with his team mate. This year cars are different and he clearly has issues with that but it doesn’t mean that every time he says something its out of frustration. He is the driver so he has to criticise the car otherwise engineers will have no idea where to develop.

        1. This is predominantly a British site though, people will generally be looking for a reason to hate Seb. It’s how it is.

          And the RB8 is genuinely bad on the straights. What, now you’re gonna say that he’s a crybaby for stating the obvious?

          1. @pamphlet – I don’t think people are looking for reasons to dislike Vettel because he is not British. I think they’re looking for reasons to dislike Vettel because he made it look really easy last year, and he constantly gets criticism for his finger antics.

          2. I think they’re looking for reasons to dislike Vettel because he made it look really easy last year, and he constantly gets criticism for his finger antics.


            Only the other day I saw someone spouting some rubbish about how Vettel had never achieved anything in a car without an exhaust-blown diffuser, which anyone who watched F1 before the middle of 2010 can tell you it complete nonsense.

          3. @pamphlet

            This is predominantly a British site though

            No it isn’t – less than half (around a third) of users on the site are British:


            If you want to see which drivers have the most support, instead of making presumptuous guesses about nationality, you can refer to the last popularity survey:


          4. @keithcollantine – 35.52% British, as opposed to 10.79% US, 5.02% AUS, a handful of other countries at just over 2% and lots of others under 2%. It’s exactly what I meant by “predominantly British”.

          5. @pamphlet Predominant refers to the strongest or main element, which I think is an exaggeration when two in three people on this site are not British.

            Besides, as I point out, we have more compelling data on what drivers people actually support, so we have no need for this silly fixation with nationality.

      2. Oh no. You don’t have to bash Button to defend Seb. As I said before, Seb is right to be frustrated because his car was not good enough to defend his position but does Button’s dad has to do with it?

  11. Ha, Happy Birthday wishes to @andrewtanner, @SoLiD, @BraddersF1 and @RumFRESH, enjoy it the whole way on an april Monday.

    1. Well said, I’ll echo that: have a great birthday people!

    2. ie ie! Happy Birthday all!

    3. Happy Birthday @AndrewTanner and all the others!

    4. Happy birthday! Hope you all have a lovely day.

    5. Thank you @bascb and @keithcollantine and everyone else for the birthday wishes. I’ll consider the truly brilliant race yesterday as my birthday present. Cheers!

    6. Thanks @BasCB It was nice to have a three day weekend ;)

  12. I also have to disagree with COTD.. i honestly think the race would have been hamiltons if he hadn’t have been given the penalty. i also think button would have finished ahed of button if after every pit stop he didnt get stuck behind a train of pit stops. i think ikt was the 2nd maybe pit stops when hamilton could have jumped button but he was stuck behind perez for two laps.

    I have as much respect for button as I do hamilton but I see hamilton as the better driver

  13. So now we know why Jean Todt got the FIA gig – he’s a mouse. He’ll do as he’s told (by you know who). Kevin Eason is brave to reveal that no one wants to go to Bahrain – his access to FIA and FOM authorities in future will be severely curtailed.

    Worse is that the Bahraini rulers now have an interest in the F1 race being disturbed, because this would give them cover for their repressive policies and they will be able to point the finger at “terrorists”. Mischief caused by agents provocateur is a distinct possibility.

    International sport is ALWAYS political, and in this case, where the Bahraini ruling family is a major stakeholder in F1, the political aspect is so glaringly obvious that Todt’s remarks suggest that he’s either clueless or in the grip of a delusion.

    I hope no one gets hurt this weekend.

    1. @rsp123 – The problem with Eason’s article is that nothing he says can be substantiated. Despite supposedly having talked to everyone he can think of in the paddock, he does not name or quote a single person that he spoke to. We only have his word that these people feel that way, even though his claims contradict everything that has been said by the likes of Haug and Whitmarsh and Brawn. Furthermore, he works for The Times, which is owned by News Corporation, which in turn is owned by Rupert Murdoch, who we know has a history of pushing his political views through his publications.

      1. @prisoner-monkeys I doubt Williams would stay quiet if one of the most important and widely-read newspapers in Britain inaccurately reported that they had, to all intents and purposes, fired a conscientious objector.

        1. @keithcollantine – The presence of one conscientious objector does not prove Eason’s story to be true. He is talking about a widespread, systemic reluctance to go to Bahrain, but only names one person in a relatively minor role who has lost their job because of it. Why is Eason the only person reporting this? If it were as obvious as he is making it out to be, how come nobody else has picked up on it?

          1. @prisoner-monkeys You said “nothing he says can be substantiated”. I was pointing out why I think the Williams story is credible.

          2. PM, I doubt The Times would put out a story that was not based on real facts and interviews. And as Keith pointed out, its certain no F1 teams, nor Bernie or the FIA will let them get away with reporting nonsense just like that.

            Given how hardly anyone in the teams has said anything openly critical, I would think that the people spoken to were adamant to keep it confidential, or would not talk.

      2. The biggest problem F1 has, in my view, is the omerta. No one dare say anything that might upset the top dogs. Look at what happened to Adam Parr. It is the Emperor’s New Clothes writ large. “We have complete trust in the FIA” is the parroted line from all and sundry on the possible pulling of the Bahraini GP, when it looks for all the world as if the FIA are in some kind of Bahraini armlock. Everything is in the shadows.

        My fear is that F1 is being steered by vested interests for political gain, with the real possibility that people will get hurt or even killed. The Gribkowsky case offers the (slim) possibility that the lid will at last be prized off the F1 moneybox and some people will go to jail. Perhaps then some openness, accountability and transparency will come to F1. It badly needs it.

        1. @rsp123 – Now you’re just assuming everyone is corrupt because they made a decision that you disagree with.

          1. No, I don’t assume that. I’m inferring, from the behaviour and silence of those within F1, as well as recent events, that F1 is a culture in which people cannot speak their minds. There are obvious conflicts of interest that would not be tolerated in any public forum, but F1 is a peculiar commercial-sporting hybrid owned and run by a few individuals who seem to wield almost complete power.

            We’ve had scandals in the olympics and football that sprang from conflicts of interest, brown envelopes, the maintenance of private power bases and other grubbiness. It seems to me that F1 could well be in for a rude awakening of its own. Not before time I’d say.

          2. @rsp123 – Inference is the process of deriving logical conclusions from premises known or assumed to be true. Since you have no knowledge of this so-called culture of silence (aside from Eason’s article, 99% of which cannot be substantiated), you are basing your inferences on assumptions.

  14. which bahrain track is being used?
    cos for 2011 they were going back to shorter circuit, but obviously we never made it.

    1. The original layout is being used. Thankfully, it seems the 2010 layout was a one-off for F1.

  15. Hey @keithcollantine, it’s Paul di Resta’s birthday as well!

  16. There is something Going on at Mclaren.. Things aint right, i think there are a few people on the other side & the pit wall that dont want a lil someone getting on top off someone else at Mclaren. Might just be me.. but i no snakes when i see em. Great Drive From Nico and Lewis and i dont wanna say it but vettel didnt do to bad aswell.

    1. I hear that they only gave Lewis 5 gears in China while JB had at least 7, maybe more.

      It isn’t fair….

      1. Spot on sir!!!

    2. Need your eyes checked then mate, no snakes!

      1. what about schumacher’s loose wheels conspiracy theory? wasnt it last year one of his wheels rolled right off his car? someone at mercedes thinks he can do it on 3 wheels

        1. Its true, I read it on the internet you know.
          Massa’s car is probably programmed to be slow as well!
          Maybe Ayrton Senna was running with a secret traction control, and anti turbo lagg device. That’s why he was so fast.
          Fangio had rockets mounted on the car, it just looked to be exhaust pipes, and Clark! Where do I start?
          Some say that he used a time machine to get into the year 2011, and stole Webber’s RB7 and parked an RB5 in its place instead. Not only explaining Clark’s immense speed, but also why Webber was so slow in 2011. It all makes sense.
          You never know what’s going on behind closed doors! Unless you are superman of cause, in which case… never mind..

  17. A shame that everyone is only picking up on one part of the COTD.

    Personally, I don’t think Merc are going to run away with the titles like Brawn did in 09. I think the conditions in China played a big part in their victory. We know they’re hard on their tyres and the cool conditions numbed that effect a little, but also enabled them to turn their tyres on quicker than the other teams, who are not so hard on their tyres. Don’t get me wrong, it was a superb win for Rosberg, and very well deserved but toward the end of the race it was clear that the McLarens at least had the pace to have kept Rosberg honest if they’d been close. Had they managed to qualify higher up then I think the fight for the lead would have been very, very close. I don’t expect Mercedes to have good race pace in Bahrain, the temperature alone is going to curtail their race. China, for me, was a one-off.

    On the subject of the McLaren pair, I actually think they’re pretty evenly matched on race pace, and Keiths lap chart analysis seems to back this up. Lewis either had bad luck, or a bad strategy in China as every pit stop seemed to drop him into a long line of traffic, whereas Button seemed to drop into clean air (until the pit stop error anyway). I know it’s silly to look back and think “what if” but indulge me here… If Lewis had not had the grid penalty, he would have probably been second after the first corner, given his excellent start, and then would not have had to cover Webber’s pit stategy, McLaren could have played Jenson against Webber and Lewis against Rosberg, covering all bases. Would Lewis have been able to make his tyres last? Probably. I believe Ted said during the race that McLaren’s tyres actually didn’t look that bad after the stops and they were just covering other people, certainly Button’s were ok, as you’d expect. Lewis, for me, is finally learning something and is beginning to play the long game and choose when to go all out and when to play it safe. He’s realised what Button’s strengths are and is looking to emulate them. If he masters this, then coupling that with his superior speed, he could take back the “number one status” within the team.

    I agree that it was a shame for Sauber, both drivers seemed to go backwards during the race, Kobayashi more so than Perez. Again, I think the conditions in China flattered Kob a bit in qualifying. I didn’t really see much of either Kob or Perez’s races so can only assume that they struggled with tyre performance. Did Perez two-stop and Kobayashi three-stop? They seem to have sacrificed race pace for qualifying pace when they should be going the other way, look at Williams! Both drivers in the mid-points scoring positions, passing two Ferraris, a Lotus and both Saubers on their way.

  18. Frankly, too much has been read into the Massa-Alonso radio transcripts. It was a decision purely based on strategy. Since Germany 2010, any message Felip gets regarding Alonso is treated as a “team order”.

    Go back to Singapore GP 2011, Di Resta was told to let Sutil past because they were on different strategies as well but no one read too much into that.

    1. The difference being team orders were legal in 2011 but not in 2010.

      1. But there is no question of team orders here Keith. My example was Singapore 2011 and not Germany 2010.

  19. I find Button’s comments very interesting and I completely agree with him but the more I think about it I can see completely where the authorities are coming from. I love Valentino Rossi and his way of celebrating suits his character very well. However, I can’t see it being acceptable in Formula 1. An example of this is how bitter many people are with Vettel’s one finger gesture. If he had a parade follow him and Materschitz decided to fund some sort of celebration it would look, in my opinion, very unprofessional. Maybe MotoGP is different is because the Motorcycle greats of the past are seen as very cavalier ( a la Sheene etc) in comparison to the more intense, highly professional ambassadors for our sport ie Prost, Stewart, Moss, Schumacher etc. Perhaps I am the only one who thinks this, and maybe Rossi gets away with his brilliant celebrations because he is an undisputed hero in MotoGP and attracts a huge audience, but if Hamilton had engineered a large celebration for his title win, then the Ferrari and Massa fans would have maybe thought it was excessive. I, for one, gained a great deal of respect for Felipe for the way he conducted himself that day and I think the likes of Stewart, Clark, Fangio and Senna would have felt the same way.

  20. Archimedas (@)
    16th April 2012, 15:27

    Happy Birthday to Paul di Resta BTW

  21. I agree with Jenson Button. Yesterday’s grands prix, especially in its closing stages, was very entertaining to watch, however post race everything seems a little bit of an anti climax. Everyone points out the fact that the teams don’t like their drivers doing doughnuts, but you can celebrate victories in other ways that does not risk damaging the cars. Drivers flying flags as Aryton Senna and Nigel Mansell famously did twenty years ago seems fine to me, and the images of fans mobbing Mansell’s Williams at Silverstone are the stuff of legend. If everyone used their commonsense, I see no reason why the sport could not return to those days!

  22. Lewis blew us away with donuts at Stowe after the 2010 Silverstone race although he’s come over to the tarmac in front of the stands rather than on the circuit – it was a dull race & the brits were nowhere & he was just doing it to brighten up our day – TOP man Lewis!

  23. I think that before the awarding of the trophies, any driver on the podium should be able to challenge any of the others to a dance-off, the winner getting a further 8 points. This would mean of course that both the 2nd and 3rd place guys, if not utterly shagged out from the race, might be able to ‘overtake’ the guy placed above them. Booming disco beats, major lightshow – what’s not to like?

    Clearly Britney, who was looking in fabulous form after Sunday’s race, would have easily beaten off any challenges in China. However I’m positive this would increase the excitement of modern F1.

  24. I cant agree with the COTD.

    In fact, Im totally baffled by people’s ability to draw such authoritative conclusions about Button and Hamilton. The fact is that they are extremely close in performance overall, and their race results show it. Lets take a look at their performances as team mates, to date:
    Hamilton: 512 pts, 6 wins
    Button: 527 pts, 6 wins

    These are startlingly similar statistics, and in my estimation at least, there’s less of a gap between them than perhaps any other 2 drivers on the grid. To have both of them possibly battle for the WDC is quite tantalizing, and I for one hope it stays this close between them!

  25. The Money (@pamphlett31220)
    17th April 2012, 3:47

    I think this will be either Button or Hamiltons last season at mclaren,ultimately i think that one of them will end the season a double world champion.Theres no way Whitmarsh will intervene in there fight for the title and as there is no number 1 or 2 at mclaren i feel there relationship will deteriorate as the season go on and i wouldn’t be suprised if they actually come together on the track more than on one occasion this season.I fear that something will have to give this season between them,i may be totally wrong but i remember when a battle for supremacy at mclaren took place in the late 80’s between two number ones going for the title ended.Then 2007 with alonso and hamilton…does anyone agree with me?.

  26. Button is on to something about post-race celebrations, but I don’t like donuts and never have, they just look tacky!

  27. Almost every post, tyres – Pirellis, Blah , blah blah & people try to decide who has the best balancing act.
    Why not go back to where a set of tyres MORE than last the race – but you can change if you want – then we would see more exciting balls out racing – not the nanny game of conserving tyres etc that is the contrived “show” we have today, – it is an insult to any fast driver and F1!! Also have qualy tyres if you want – BUT – you start the race on what you qualified on- with the sole exception of a wet race!

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