Top F1 links from the past 24 hours:
McLaren sporting director Sam Michael: Sam Michael “I’ve got exactly the same view as Giorgio [Ascanelli] and Adrian [Newey]. Our plan at McLaren at the moment is to test in Abu Dhabi. We’re not testing at Silverstone for all those reasons.
“Engines is a significant factor, as Giorgio said. If you want to test at the end of the year, you have so many part-mileage engines with the race team that all have a little bit of mileage on them so you can effectively do it for free, in terms of your race engines. If you try and do that in the middle of the year, you can’t use your race engines so you have to prepare a special test engine.”
“Ferrari: The much-predicted ‘B car’ hasn’t appeared, but a raft of changes and tweaks have. These include a new floor, updated elements on the rear-wing and a front-wing tested by Felipe Massa throughout P1. To be honest, we expected more.”
McLaren managing director Jonathan Neale: “When you look are everybody else’s car, and they’ve all done something different, you do have a sharp intake of breath and you ask yourself ‘Did we miss a trick there?’ But I don’t think we have. And we have brought a reasonable upgrade here. I would be surprised if the nose is more than 20% of the performance improvement we have put on the car this weekend.”
“It is the same for everybody and it is ultimately healthy for Formula One to have a single tyre supplier. In years gone by, when there were two tyre suppliers in some instances teams would sometimes not have access to tyres that were the preferred ones.”
Pirelli motorsport director Paul Hembery: “There has been one particular comment made in the last few races. But at the end of last season the number of people who came to see us and say they were unhappy was zero. And the number of people who have come to see us this season is one. So you have to be reasonably pragmatic.”
“It’s a long process I think but with two races on the calendar and hopefully having me on the grid next year, we’re working very hard with corporate America. I think it’s all coming together but it is a long process.”
“The F1 rules dictate that a driver is not allowed to gain an advantage by going off the track. Some drivers felt there should be a zero-tolerance approach to this – with seven-time world champion Michael Schumacher and Ferrari’s Felipe Massa particularly vocal.”
“The most likely scenario at this stage is that any shower will be after the race, as the teams begin the de-rig, ergo a dry and cloudy race.”
“Drivers often have coverings or padding added for their own comfort. The fastidious [Michael] Schumacher has all this done for him, but then the seat has an additional series of inflatable cushions added, to bolster him in the right position for complete security and comfort when he’s driving.”
My new article for Unibet.
Comment of the day
Mclaren thinks McLaren look strong this weekend – or is that just wishful thinking?
It is very tight between the top teams, and the three-week gap seems to have tightened the grid further. On lap qualifying pace, I think McLaren look the fastest, with Red Bull, Mercedes, Lotus following. In race pace however, McLaren again look very strong, but seem to have a bigger advantage over the Red Bulls. Hamilton, especially on the hards was mighty in the long race stint. In the long stint on softs, it was more accurate to look at button as Hamilton’s tyres had been used for his previous two hot laps whereas Jenson Buttons were fresh.
Overall, an unpredictable weekend, here we go!
From the forum
- Name the top ten F1 drivers of the 1980s
Happy birthday to Steven!
On this day in F1
Controversy ten years ago today in the Austrian Grand Prix after Rubens Barrichello was ordered to hand victory to Michael Schumacher.
Here’s the footage from 2002:
Image © Ferrari spa/Ercole Colombo