Grosjean focused on a “clean getaway” in Korea

F1 Fanatic round-up

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In the round-up: Romain Grosjean says his priority in the Korean Grand Prix is making a clean start.


Top F1 links from the past 24 hours:

Saturday in Korea – Romain’s Perspective (Lotus)

“There will be a lot of attention on my start tomorrow and I think some drivers may try to put pressure on me as they know I’ll be focusing on making a clean getaway, but I know my objectives and I think we’re capable of a good result.”

McLaren wary of Webber ‘riding shotgun’ for Vettel (Reuters)

“Asked whether he expected Webber to ‘ride shotgun’ for the German, allowing Vettel to pass and build up an advantage while keeping others behind him, McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh said [he] doubted it. ‘I don’t think he will, do you?’, said Whitmarsh. Button, sitting on a stool alongside, nodded vigorously to the assembled reporters. ‘I do,’ said the driver.”

Senna: Missing practice caused Q1 exit (Autosport)

“It’s a typical result of losing the first session on Friday, then having an OK second session but a bad third session with technical problems.”

Rosberg: Lewis quick but I’m ready (The Telegraph)

“Despite totally different upbringings – Rosberg’s the privileged childhood in Monaco, Hamilton’s the council estate in Stevenage – the Briton used to be invited to play on the yacht of Rosberg’s father, 1982 world champion Keke.”

Red Bull RB8 – double-DRS rear wing (F1)

“Technical chief Adrian Newey has reinterpreted the thinking behind Mercedes’ F-duct front wing, but with a much simpler system.”

Fernando Alonso: “We seem to be a little bit more competitive…” (Adam Cooper’s F1 Blog)

“I was thinking it would be a little bit worse to be honest, because we were sixth and 11th in Suzuka, we have exactly the same car, and we are fourth and sixth here, so it’s something that’s a little bit better, and we seem to be a little bit more competitive, also on the long run yesterday.”

Whitmarsh Q&A (Sky)

“Qualifying is very important. We now have to get hold of Sergio and develop him. At 22, he is still a very, very young driver. He is very smart, but he is very raw – he hasn’t had the grooming that Lewis had at this point in his career. So we will see when we get hold of him and see if we can help him realise his potential.”

Hamilton undecided on race plan (BBC)

“I want to beat Sebastian. I want to beat Fernando. I want to try to close that gap up. But [Red Bull] are so fast this weekend.”


How Safety Has Killed Great Racetrack Design (Car and Driver)

“The FIA and F1 perceive that if they dictated every aspect regarding safety, their liability might be greater in the event of a tragedy. And so we see the sort of repetition of approved corners and track characteristics that now clutters the racing calendar.”


Comment of the day

@Enigma is looking forward to today’s race:

In a way the championship is more interesting now it’s two drivers so close. There’s plenty of interesting battles coming up at the start and Korea has what is probably the best first sector in terms of race starts – as we’d seen last year with many great battles on the opening lap.

Then there’s the battle for the win – Red Bulls up against each other, and as many as three other teams potentially being as fast as Red Bull on race pace. Add to that the chance of someone doing what Grosjean and Perez did in Montreal and we’ve got a great race coming up.

I think as many as the top seven could have a chance of winning tomorrow, and I wouldn’t completely rule out drivers starting in 11th, 12th and 13th neither. Can’t wait!

From the forum

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to Magnificent Geoffrey and pablopete80!

If you want a birthday shout-out tell us when yours is by emailling me, using Twitter or adding to the list here.

On this day in F1

Engine supplier Asiatech announced its withdrawal from Formula 1 ten years ago today, having briefly considered becoming a full constructor.

Asiatech supplied engines based on units developed by Peugeot to Arrows in 2001 and Minardi the following year.

Image © Lotus F1 Team/LAT

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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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37 comments on “Grosjean focused on a “clean getaway” in Korea”

  1. Like the choice of photo – Grosjean will be hoping the sponsorship is apt at the end of Lap 1!

  2. @magnificent-geoffrey

    So great Mag, it’s your Birthday now,
    We’re all asking, to celebrate how?
    So I think, it is the time,
    For your very own, little rhyme.

    A fan of Sauber our poet is,
    And last week Kamui did the biz,
    Mag was overjoyed with this latest feat,
    And hoped it would help Kamui keep his seat.

    He covered practice in Bahrain,
    When Keith was under so much strain,
    A fantastic job we all agree,
    A great Keith stand-in is Magffrey!

    The founder of the Collantine Cup,
    A man to whom I do look up!
    Beaten to the title was he,
    With a bit of luck, next time will be me!

    And so there’s not much more to say,
    About the man who writes poems for every birthday,
    Apart from this you’ll all agree,
    A great big HAPPY BIRTHDAY from the F1 Fanatic Family!

      1. Alex raises his glass and shouts “Cheers to a real F1fanatic!” Happy Birthday to Geoffery!

    1. Here’s to a great birthday @magnificent-geoffrey!

      1. @Magnificent Geoffrey happy birthday!

        And that was COTD right there from @bradley13!

    2. Good work! Happy birthday @magnificent-geoffrey.

    3. Well done! And wishing you a very happy birthday @magnificent-geoffrey!

    4. Many happy returns Mag, have a good one.

    5. Nice idea for the Poem @bradley13!

      Happy birthday @magnificent-geoffrey

    6. Hahahahaha! Thanks very much for that @Bradley13! You’re going to take over my job if you keep this up! :D

      Thank you to the rest of you too! :)

      1. Happy birthday @magnificent-geoffrey! Not the best of results for Sauber today though :(

      2. Haha, that’s quite alright @magnificent-geoffrey. It’s amazing that my best ideas seem to come to me spontaneously at half past midnight…, so I think I’ll let you keep the job as well ;)
        Also, cheers for the comments guys :)

      3. Happy birthday @magnificent-geoffrey. I hope you enjoyed your day. :) Nice poem @bradley13. :)

    7. Happy Birthday mate @magnificent-geoffrey
      Nice work @bradley13

    8. @bradley13 Well done, that’s really good! Happy birthday our Mag.

  3. Really enjoyed the Car and Driver article. Really wonder why can’t the regulations be freed up slightly, if the necessary run-off area is provided? Also, I don’t understand why the run-off area itself is made of tarmac. Can’t tricky corners stay tricky and unforgiving (to the driver’s race, and not his life)?

    1. The run-off is tarmac because if a car hits a gravel trap at an angle, it can dig in, and if it digs in, it can flip. Michael Schumacher’s barrel roll in free practice at Albert Park (in 2004, I think) is a perfect example of this.

      1. Ah, that explains it. Would closed-cockpits reduce the risk to the driver should a car flip?

        1. No. Closed cockpits are intended to deflect debris. The real concern when a car flips is that it becomes unpredictable. Forces are applied to the car in directions that they were never meant to endure. There is a real risk that if a car flips, the safety cell will be critically damaged, which could result in death or injury. Closed cockpits will do nothing to stop that.

    2. From the article I rather understand the problem is rather that there are not really clear guidelines but more a min/max and pointing to the Best in business example that make designers choose better safe than sorry?

  4. Please don’t clean up what front of you, Grosjean.

  5. Don’t know if anyone else feels the same, but I’m getting a bit irritated with Jenson. He’s been lecturing Lewis on twitter – finding every opportunity to have a dig at him and is now almost reveling publicly in the fact he’s ‘seen Lewis off’ and is now the McLaren No.1 ‘man’.

    Don’t get me wrong, I was more than happy for Jenson after years of driving poor cars to get the chance in the Brawn to win a WDC. Further, having been impressed with Hamilton in his early years his petulant and self important behaviour last year was terrible to watch and this followed by his 2012 zen like conversion hacked me off even more.

    But its as though Jenson is getting ahead of himself and stupid comments about Webber being Vettel’s wing man whether made in jest or not are clearly ill judged. It seems obvious to me given the chance Webber would be delighted to deny Vettel a 3rd title particularly if he won a couple of races in the interim.

    More so now Webber is on a 1 year contract with RB; so can they really control him to yield to his team mate? I think he has more power now to his arm to give them the blunt Aussie fingers than ever before.

    Jenson has predominantly been the underdog, either because the team are not competitive or his team mate is as good if not better than him. It will be fascinating to watch how he presents himself now he is McLaren’s senior man with Perez ‘in training’ as Whitmarsh has suggested.

    1. Like this, and mainly agree. I too got a bad taste with Jenson and comments about Webber. For a time I regarded Jenson in the same regard as Mark…but not so much.

      Webber seems real but still speaks what other drivers will not. Furthermore, he does things that other drivers wouldn’t, basically what would be morally right (like not pulling over for Vettel) instead of playing along with the Politics. So I agree with Whitmarsh and see a hard fight for the lead with Vettel.

      1. Webber is a show-off, an otherwise nice bloke, but bring a camera anywhere within a 10meter radius of him, and watch him instantly shift gear to “oh, i gotta impress on camera” mode.
        check the rain-stopped malaysian gp for an example.
        …and sometimes, an idiot, but deffo better than button, and without doubt more class than alonso or schumy!

  6. In the article about track design, it says Fuji is a Tilke track. Thats not right, is it ? Its been there since the 60`s.

    1. If I remember correctly, the update Fuji received a few years ago was designed by Tilke.

      Perhaps we could say it was Tilkefied.

      1. Fuji isn’t actually that bad – until you get to the final two corners. Tilke kept most of the original circuit intact; he only really changed the back half to create a bit more passing. The sharp turn at the bottom of the circuit worked quite well for what it was, awkward as it looked. But he turned the final two corners into a double hairpin, the idea being that when an attacking driver and a defending driver emerged onto the ultra-long front straight, they would both have different racing lines, setting up a pass along the main straight or into the first turn. But it didn’t work. All the final corners managed to do was bunch up the field by forcing them to run in single file, and the only cars to get any benefit were the lead cars in the line because they could get traction first.

        If the circuit skipped the final complex and just linked the bottom hairpin to the front straight, it would probably be very good.

    2. @phil-t the updated Fuji is a Tilke track. Specially the slow chicanes. That’s Tilke for you.

      Can’t believe they put chicanes on a new track. It’s the WORST thing to do…

  7. The onboard footage I’ve seen showed the ‘traffic’ Di Resta is on about was miles out of the way. Looked to me that he was simply too slow.

    1. Paul di Resta is very good at explaining away his and the team’s poor(er) performances in such a way that it is never his (or the team’s) fault. Sometimes he has a genuine point, like when he and Grosjean made contact on the first lap at Silverstone and do Resta wound up in the barriers at Aintree. But if you read any of his post-qualifying or post-race comments (though he mostly does it after qualifying), you will notice just how often he runs into traffic or develops a mechanical problem or the circuit conditions change and the tyres no longer work as well as they once did, and the way they always seem to happen at the most inopportune moment, usually just before he had a chance to set a competitive lap time. He’s always got an answer at the ready, and his misfortune is never his (or the team’s) fault. It’s the main reason why I don’t like him. He’s too smooth, and he goes out of his way to avoid stepping on somebody’s toes, as if he wants everyone to like him, and for them to know that he’s much faster than he appears to be, just in case a drive with a front-running team comes up. To me, he lacks a bit of backbone, as if he’s worried that speaking up when something needs to be said will hurt his career prospects. Just imagine how he would have responded to McLaren’s pit problems at the start of the year – something needed to be said, but Paul di Resta would have been more worried about protecting his seat than fixing the problem. That is why I don’t like him.

  8. Alex raises his glass and shouts “Cheers to a real F1fanatic!” Happy Birthday to Geoffery! (Yes, I know it’s only 10:30 a.m. here… ****)

  9. Interesting to read about the DDRS of Red Bull. It is not technically a Double DRS as it doesn’t duct through the car till the front wing.
    May be we could call it a 1.5 DRS? Impressive that it is shedding the downforce that much though via just th small beam wing. Is it happening that the diffuser performance is also reduced causing even lesser downforce and more top speed?

    1. It is a Double DRS, because it uses DRS to activate a secondary function. To differentiate from somethign like what Lotus (and Mercedes now) are trying to do with the passive rear stalling devices

  10. It seems a bit of a contradiction that motor racing is about going the fastest around a track but the FIA seem to want a slower and slower track which at ends day doesn’t make for safer racing. It makes for fearless racing which is inherently more dangerous. It’s like “Okay, so we are going the fastest around a very slow track.” Why not put drivers in golf carts… have them race to each green… try for par and race to the next.

  11. Just read over that article about how limiting new circuit regulations are. I didn’t expect they’d be SO restrictive. Crazy stuff. It would be interesting to see another company tasked with building an F1 circuit, I don’t have any problems with Tilke’s company but variety is the spice of life and all that.

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