Horner: Less pressure on Red Bull after titles triple

F1 Fanatic round-up

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Christan Horner, Red Bull, Jerez, 2013In the round-up: Christan Horner says there is a more relaxed mood at Red Bull after their third consecutive year of success.


Your daily digest of F1 news, views, features and more.

Horner: Red Bull more relaxed (Sky)

“In many respects the pressure is off us because we’ve achieved a triple double world championship. Nobody can take that away from us, that’s in the history books.”

Second test for Ferrari, first test for Alonso (Ferrari)

“Fernando has… maximised the time available and tackled the task with great dedication, performing a focused physical preparation worthy of the best Olympic athlete by alternating between gym sessions, running and biking.”

Hulkenberg a ‘huge asset’ says Sauber (Autosport)

Chief designer Matt Morris: “I worked with Nico briefly at Williams and he’s not only a fast driver, he’s also a clever driver. That’s both in terms of his general approach and also his ability to understanding engineering.”

Grand Prix denies watering left Albert Park Lake too low for sailing (The Age)

“Grand Prix Corporation CEO Andrew Westacott said the corporation, which has been using the lake’s water since mid-January, uses only a very small proportion compared with what evaporates.”

Ferrari F138 Nose Slot (ScarbsF1)

“Contrary to much rumouring the slot is a relatively simple aerodynamic solution to improve the air flow under the raised section of chassis.”

Mika and McLaren ?ǣ a special relationship (McLaren)

“Neither the 1994 McLaren-Peugeot MP4/9 nor the 1995 McLaren-Mercedes MP4/10 was quick enough for him to be able to win Grands Prix in those years, but we who were watching closely saw and admired Mika’s raw speed. So, undoubtedly, did the McLarenites, most especially Ron himself, then as shrewd a judge of a driver’s in-cockpit ability as anyone, and massively if quietly impressed with his new ‘flying Finn’.”


Comment of the day

@Fer-no65 on F1’s falling TV audiences:

At a time when F1 is enjoying one of the greatest eras in terms of competition, this is rather embarrasing for everyone involved. 2012 should?ve been a record breaker, and it wasn?t?? then what?s happening?

Well, for one they are getting out of date. Why isn?t streaming (paid streaming that is) available? people would pay to watch races on their laptops, I?m very sure. Indycar offered for free not long ago (not sure if they still do), so why don?t F1? that?d increase viewing figures massively I think…

From the forum

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to _Ben_ and Mike!

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

Nineties F1 backmarker Giovanni Lavaggi turns 55 today.

Lavaggi failed to finish in four starts for Pacific in 1995, and in half-a-dozen appearances for Minardi the following year he failed to get within the 107% time on three occasions. Only in Portgual did he make it to the end while still running, five laps down in 15th place.

Image ?? Red Bull/Getty

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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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  • 72 comments on “Horner: Less pressure on Red Bull after titles triple”

    1. Sky offer a streaming service with Sky Go. It’s way expensive to buy on it’s own, but comes free with an expensive full Sky TV subscription. You have to assume Sky have exclusive rights to the F1 online streaming in the UK as it’s a nice extra incentive for making people take up Sky subscriptions.

      1. What I find incredibly frustrating is that you can get the F1 channel from sky with a package that costs £32 a month (Dish, box, remote and fitting are free) and you get access to sky go, however if you just want sky go for the F1 channel it costs £35 a month? Can anyone think of a good reason for charging more for less?
        Another alternative is to get the sky sports app (Android and iphone only) for just £4.99 a month.
        Personally I’d be more than happy to pay £10 per month for just the F1 channel only via streaming, but sadly this option is not available to us. Surly sky are squandering a potential revenue generator because they don’t allow customers to have just the channels they want?

      2. @calum – we are talking here of a streaming service primarily for F1 which could be managed by FOM. Absolutely Sky do a streaming service through Sky Go, but as you have said realistically you have to have a Sky sports/HD subscription, which brings with it (at a cost) many channels that likely the average viewer won’t watch (if we are talking of F1 fans with a Sky Sports package).

        So an online stream which is purely for F1 would be welcome by many, including @fer-no65. I do see where your coming from though in that there are streams which can be useful to people with Sky subscriptions such as myself.

    2. Didn’t see that COTD coming !

      1. Well deserved my friend. Formula 1 looks slow in adopting new media and it sounds like a sin for a sport full of technology loving engineers… unfortunately they don’t run the show on their own

      2. IndyCar stopped offering it for free when they got a new broadcaster paying for them, If I remember right. But as far as I know, they are still offered, just not free of pay anymore @fer-no65.

        A very good point about moving whith the times though.

        1. Yeah, that was gutting when they pulled the free streams. It seemed like such a smart move on their part. The commentary was from some sort of radio broadcast and it went in and out with commercials, which meant it wasn’t as desirable as the real TV feed. Yet, it gave those of us without the means to have an expensive cable package a chance to keep up with the racing. I’ll have to check out their paid streaming that you mentioned. If it’s still cheaper than a full cable package, it might be worth splurging for.

      3. And on that subject, for a lot of fans, judging by the popularity of many different streams, online streaming is the only option to see the races live and uninterrupted (and free, although given a reasonable price and quality(HD) I would support a payment. I say “support”, because there will always be an an easy illegal and free alternative as long as the sport is at least somewhat popular. But to be honest, given the amount of sponsorship and advertising in the sport itself. It seems silly for me that it should be anything but free. Otherwise, it is like Ken Block asking to pay him a fee to watch his viral videos).

        Since… welll given I’am just 20… basically when ever I watched some motorsport (or sport in general in fact) event, it has been trough online streams, weather it is legal or not. F1, LMS, ALMS, some rally events, hockey and so on. I and many others don’t and will not care from where the stream comes as long as you can enjoy the event.

        For the big-wigs to ignore this or try to limit it is just pure ignorance. It hurts their viewing figures, decreases sponsorship and profit. Its not like I will buy a satellite dish or a cable for my small dorm room to pay for the exclusive channel in my country with my minute scholarship… Not to mention I only have internet devices as do many others…

        1. When it comes down to it, streaming unofficially is breaking the law. Of course, until a better legal alternative is found it’s going to happen. But for an example of how it can work, just look at how Spotify has helped slow down music piracy.

        2. @mateuss It’s really weird that they are not even bothered to talk about it. Illegal streams will always be rubbish in terms of quality, and finding a good reliable one is very hard (took me years).

          An official, good quality, stable, reliable streaming service, will always be very welcome.

          And on that subject, it’s the whole of the internet that F1 is getting really, REALLY wrong. Just F1.com is rubbish enough… their videos take ages to load, and there’s no onboard videos, or classic footage. Why, one might say, is a failing enterprise kicking itself so hard in the nuts and pulling itself backwards?

          1. It’s interesting that you mention the vintage footage. I know for a while Indy Car was uploading vintage races *in their entirety* onto their youtube channel. Seeing races from anywhere from 1982 to 1992 was a pretty cool experience (brought back lots of memories, too!).

          2. Why, one might say, is a failing enterprise kicking itself so hard in the nuts and pulling itself backwards?

            Exactly what I was thinking @fer-no65

            I think Bernie for all his negotiating prowess needs to learn a bit about the elastisity of demand. I’m an Engineer so I know bugger all about this, But, I do know that if you charge teams to race, charge countries to host races, charge sponsers to sponser teams and races, charge fans admitance to races and then top it off by selling the rights to Sky who charge fans to watch this already over funded spectacle… This money making machine will run out of steam and F1 will be choked by it’s own greed.

      4. I think if there was a way to watch it via F1’s official website things would be so much easier for say, £15-25 for a whole race weekend – discounts if coverage bought in bulk eg 5 race weekends, 10, whole season.

        But doing that would make Sky’s (and other broadcasters) licenses of little value. They’d have no reason to pay for it when people could just buy it from someone else for equal or better value. At the end of the day, I don’t think it’s a case of Formula One not keeping up to date by accident, it’s a case of the conciously deciding that offering services like those suggested above, would be financially backwards. They get better profits from selling individual licenses to breadcasters that by simply selling it direct themselves. We simply come back to it being about money… again… always! :S

        1. *them / *broadcasters.

        2. @nick-uk – we need to make a fuss to the broadcasters then and get them to bring in a service where you can buy a subscription for just the races or, in the case of Sky, Sky F1!

    3. Another article from the Age seeking to cast the Australian GP in a negative light. Yawn.

      1. @tdog The Age is like the elderly neighborhood old bat who sits at her window and complains at school kids walking on her lawn or somebody’s painted their fence the wrong colour.

        Just needless, embarrassing rambling from “The Aged”.

      2. The nation-wide drugs in sport scandal that first came to light about two weeks ago has really taken the wind out of The Age‘s sails. Australian sport has taken a huge hit following revelations that there has been widespread use and abuse of performance enhancing drugs, allegations of match fixing and evidence to ties to the criminal underworld. The Grand Prix is the first major sporting event to arrive in Melbourne since the allegations were first made public, and motorsport is one of the few mainstream sporting disciplines that has not been tainted by the claims of drug use. As a result, it seems that The Age how now found themselves in a position where they cannot directly criticise the Grand Prix, because Melbourne – the nation’s self-proclaimed sporting capital – needs an event to restore its reputation. So now they’re just nipping at the event’s heels, targeting it in the most indirect way they can imagine.

        1. After all those comments from @pm and others, I tried reading the article in the link.
          Before I didn’t bother if it was the age, but I thought let’s try it.

          In our country we call this vinegar-urinators – and what a way to make a headline when all official quotes say the water just evaporated. And trying to make your point with disabled sailing… Disgusting!

      3. The real irony is, it was the Australian Grand Prix corporation who paid to fill the lake with water, before the track was made, it was something akin to a swamp… I really should find some pictures of the track before it was touched, I remember it being quite an eye-sore…

        1. I found the article really interesting, in that it even states how the GP changed from using (expensive – wastefull!) tap water to using some from the lake for the grass in the park. Just imagine what they would make of it if they were still using the tap water (Australia wasting money AND drinking water on the race! or something like that).
          I think that with the heat etc. its clear that every body of water will have lower levels, and its great that there is at least a lake so animals can still stay underwater!

        2. Drop Valencia!
          19th February 2013, 5:22

          Before the GP came, you wouldn’t go near the lake for fear of being needle sticked, that’s if you could get past the undesireables living near what was a wretched swamp.

    4. Sorry, I’m pretty sure this has already been discussed to death, but I think I must have missed some key arguments: Why, exactly, did Alonso need longer than everyone else to train for this season?

      1. Maybe Fernando really likes xmas dinner and just eats so much more than the other drivers that he needs another week to burn off the extra calories.

        1. Finally — a reason I can relate to!

          1. I was thinking along the same lines as DD42 but was laying the blame on Tapas.

      2. From what i could understand was that he had a number of official Ferrari engagements well after the season ended and so needed the extra time to prepare

      3. He didnt _need_ to take more time to prepare. He just didnt need to be at the first test, and so he took advantage of the extra time!

        I’ve been following his tweets and to be honest, he looks extremely motivated. A man on a mission.

      4. @aka_robyn I doubt fitness training was the principle reason behind it. I suspect it had more to do with Alonso wanting to spend more time in the car at a circuit that’s more representative of F1 tracks and when the car is closer to its Melbourne specification.

        It was clear from what Massa said after three days in Jerez that his testing programme had been mostly fixed-speed aerodynamic runs – useful for the team, but not the kind of set-up work that’s useful for the driver. I think Alonso wanted to have less of that.

        1. While, I agree with your explanation, I still think fitness training and more relaxation played a huge huge part.

          I mean the guy literally did miracles with the car last year from lap 1 in Australia to about lap 1 in the USA. Like withstanding Maldonado’s pressure in Melbourne, winning in Sepang, from the 11th in Valencia, again withstanding relentless pressure from faster cars in Hockenheim, sneaking up to 3rd in Monza, pulling out that start in Austin, etc. He faded for the last two races, Interlagos in particular, where he made uncharacteristic mistakes. On the top of that, he wasn’t treated like Kimi – I read here he had a tight PR schedule just ahead of the US GP, when probably most of the guys were already at Austin. I bet he was exhausted after spending probably more laps than anybody on the absolute limit of his car and his abilities. And I bet he would want to avoid letting go of his focus (relatively) by the last round of the championship.

          So I kind of understand his argument.

          Still, while it became so repetative to praise Alonso’s 2012 efforts that they are almost played down to an extent here, I still think they were out of this world, and no matter what he does, how he prepares, he will not be able to repeat his 2012 performance. It was so special.

          1. Chris (@tophercheese21)
            18th February 2013, 10:11

            The reason he missed the first test was so that Felipe and Pedro could get all the “dirty work” out of the way, so that when he does get in the car, he can work on improving the performance.

            Also, Jerez is not a typical Formula 1 track anymore. Catalunya is an official track and teams correlate their performance there to how they think they’ll do in the season because the track is perfect for testing car downforce levels.

            Basically, by Alonso missing the first test, it gives him more time in the car to work on more relevant aspects.

        2. I have to say that after seeing other drivers on Twitter talk about how they couldn’t wait to get back in the car, it seemed very strange to see one who apparently couldn’t be bothered to show up and was happy to leave the drudgery of initially testing the new car to his number two driver. No matter what explanation anyone gave, it just didn’t sit well with me at all.

          But then I remembered that Ayrton Senna reportedly showed a somewhat similar attitude toward testing at times, so it’s not as though there isn’t impeccable precedent for such behavior.

          1. off course then there is the rumour that made the rounds on twitter and the ‘net a week or so back that Alonso had actually broken something during the winter carting events. But as that was no where even alluded to in any serious publication, I rather not mentioned it before @aka_robyn.

            1. @bascb I do remember seeing that rumor, along with the (probably joking) one that he had gained too much weight over the break to fit in the car. Maybe he’ll pull a Webber and wait until after the season to admit he broke something, thereby amazing everyone with his strength and fortitude: “He drove that amazing season while recovering from a broken wrist — can you imagine?

    5. Any big sport should look at the E-Sport model. They strived with limited exposure, just imagine how F1, football or whatever can explode if they adapted the same model.

      Everything points out to, Formula 1 have to die, before it can be reborn again. Some people there (not even Bernie) are living in a den.

      1. Bernie is a single-cell parasite, living off of others who are living in a den. :)
        (not a biologist, don’t have a clue if there are any single-cell parasites) :)

    6. I personally think that Alonso didnt feel the need to test on Jerez. As other driver said, this track is not really relevant of the champ and doesnt give a great feedback. + the Tyres issue.

    7. Less pressure, less motivation? Horner is right about there being less pressure on Red Bull I mean this year doesn’t even compare to what Mercedes will experience in 2014, but unlike him, I think there’s a direct relation between pressure and motivation, and right now I can think of two or three teams that are far more motivated than Red Bull.

      1. Maybe the motivation of the drivers will lift the team.

        1. Or may be it means ‘we have changed focus to 2014 already because we don’t have enough resources to develop both cars at the same time’.

      2. I think Christian realises that the new Red Bull perhaps isn’t as fast as the Ferrari or Mclaren. This is his way of saying ‘don’t look at us, we don’t expect much from this year but we’re still serious players’

        1. @zubair380 After one test? When they haven’t come close to putting the definitive round one aero package on their car? Nor, for that matter, have their rivals? No chance.

          1. if anything, its keeping down expectations to be able to work with less pressure at the start of the year

          2. @keithcollantine My guesses were 100% based upon Gary Anderson’s Jerez analysis. Obviously there’s a lot more testing left to do but from what he’s mentioned so far, I wouldn’t be surprised if Red Bull are a touch off the pace.

            1. Even if they are they certainly have the resources to get back at the top rather quickly.

            2. @zubair380 – That analysis had far too many assumptions for my liking, not to mention the fact what Keith has already stated. Who are we, or Anderson, to second-guess what Red Bull’s program and fuel loads consisted of?

              To me that article was about as useful as a sodium and eel salesman.

    8. That Ferrari article is positively moderate and reasonable by their standards!

    9. I think the Hulk would be an advantage to most teams. I am keen to see how well he will do this year after having 2012 to get back up to speed again.

    10. AHAHAHAH!!!!!!!!!!

      im sorry but that last bit was beyond hilarious. Why iterate your success ? Yes we all know you’ve had 3 WC’s. it’s like you constantly need to remind us as if we’ve forgotten it, it’s almost similar to how insecure people behave!!!!!

    11. Mika overtaking Schumi going around a lapped car at Spa in 2000 (I guess) was one of the best overtake scene I’ve ever seen.


      1. “Yeah, it wass… I mean, yeah it wass ahh.. it wass differnet.” Loved his everlasting monolouges.

    12. The next 1993 Grand Prix after the Italian was the Portuguese, at Estoril. McLaren drafted in its test driver, Mika Pauli Hakkinen, to replace Michael, and the 25-year-old Finn outqualified Ayrton straight away. Rarely has any driver made a more auspicious McLaren debut, and two things were immediately clear: McLaren had another potential superstar on its hands, and poor Michael would never be seen in F1 again.

      I had a chuckle at this, I remember Michael Andretti, wish I didn’t really, but I actually was a keen follower of both Indy Car and F1 back in those days, and I was keen to see what M. Andretti had to offer, boy did he disappoint. He spectacularly took out Berger in a start line incident at Brazil in 93, which didn’t endear him to anyone in the paddock.

      Alan Henry is probably overstating McLarens success in 1993, as, it really was Williams 1st and Mclaren a second or so behind, with some brilliant drives by Senna making up the deficit to win a handful of races. But I guess we can forgive him considering he’s writing a blog on the McLaren website ;)

      1. I know what you mean about Andretti. His major mistake was not relocating to Europe. Not being on the ground, not being able to wander round the factory to try endear yourself with the team (ala Button) and really engross yourself in the culture of the sport was always going to be a recipe for disaster. Marco Andretti said recently that there was a conspiracy to make his father fail to favour Hakkinen, but if you put yourself in the team’s shoes it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to work out who the team is going to prefer when given the choice between (a) a young lad doing thousands of testing miles for the benefit of the team, who was technically astute and rapid AND who was well liked by the team and (b) a big name American racing driver who can’t even be bothered to try fit in with the team and who appeared to be unwilling to try fix the car’s foibles. Rant over. :)

        I see know what you mean about Henry’s column perhaps hyping up 1993 a bit too much, but Senna’s performances that season where remarkable given how dominant the FW15C was and how much power McLaren were giving up by using the Ford HB engine (around 40 bhp if the engine manufacturer’s estimates are to be believed).

    13. Red Bull – “If we keep saying we have got less pressure and are more relaxed we will have less pressure and be more relaxed. Keep saying it. Keep saying it! Seriously keep saying it!!!!!!!!!”

    14. Chris (@tophercheese21)
      18th February 2013, 9:45

      I would say that Ferrari and Mclaren have the most pressure to perform this season.

      Ferrari because they need to show that they have improved their car since last season, and that they have a competent design team, so that they can give Fernando the car he needs to win the C’Ship.

      And Mclaren because they need to prove that they can deliver on potential in terms of car reliability (which was their Achilles heel last season), and in terms of proving that signing Sergio was the right decision.

    15. Ferrari is the most powerfull brand in the World.

      1. I think Apple, google, Microsoft, Sony etc may disagree with you.

          1. Nomore, ahem, this is quoted from the article you posted a link to:

            Topping the list was Apple, with a brand value of 87.3 billion, followed by Samsung with a value of $58.8 billion and Google with a value of $52.1 billion for their respective brands.

            By comparison, Ferrari’s brand value was only $3.6 billion.

            Ferrari are the most powerful automotive brand but are far off Apple.

            1. …if of course we ignore the rather ambiguous claims made about brand power, which I would largely ignore. Money talks.

        1. JimmyTheIllustratedBlindSolidSilverBeachStackapopolis III
          18th February 2013, 16:23

          Apple isn’t powerfull what can they do recall all their terrible “phones” and save people £500 a year? that would be doing all the simpletons a favour. Google that’s only the flavour of the decade, if they shut down we’d all quickly find there are many many many other search providers that do a more than decent job.

          Microsoft have already shot them selves in the foot with windows 8 they may one day release a good operating system but no ones going to bend over backwards asking them to continue production on 8. Sony addmitedly does have its fingers in alot of pies but what actual power do they have? or indeed do any of these companys have? They all have alot of money but it’s not like they can get jelly babies banned world wide or start up their own nuclear testing programs.

    16. Happy Birthday Johnny Carwash!

    17. Must agree with@bascb, Christian Horners comments are a bluff, everyone expects big things from the Bulls. You could even say they’re the benchmark, he is just trying to re-direct the heat. Now that we getting close to the serious side of the season, it will be interesting to see what the next test brings. Massa showed us the F138 seems to have the potential to do what a Ferrari should do and the seemingly super fit Alonso along with a bundle of new bolt-ons will give us all a real gauge to mark off. Let’s just hope that new nose slot can help keep the heads at Ferrari cool as well as their drivers. Great to see “The Hulk” getting the praise he deserves, if Sauber makes those sidepods work with their package, look out rest of the field, it’s his time to shine. As for Albert Park, people in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones. As @dragoll mentioned the AGPC saved that lake, which provides alot more functions to other sports and entertainment than having F1 cars driving around it. As someone who lives in Melbourne, we have had so little rain in the past few months, in doesn’t take a scientist to work out what has happened to the water, even if it has been used to preserve the surroundings, it’s in everyone’s best interest. Remind me to share with you all the multiply press releases ‘The Age’ will glorify itself with on the weekend of the opening round of the highly anticipated 2013 season. Can anyone remind me if Mika has made an appearance on Top Gear? I also rate him highly (as i do most Finns) and would love to see his time a round the track. Regarding COTD @Fer-no65 hit the nail on the head, get with the times F1! I would love to watch the BBC or Sky coverage streamed over my local add filled wish wash, I might even pay for it.

    18. Olympian Alonso? what about Thriatlon Button? Looks like now that the “samurai” and the “gladiator” didn’t work, he will be nicknamed now “the Olympian”… F1 drivers are characterized for their harsh training before and throughout the season. That’s the standard

      1. @omarr-pepper

        so is also claiming that people are still calling him samurai or gladiator ? This is why tooting your own horn before you achieve something is hilarious !!!!

    19. Horner comes out with something like this before every season since they have one it, I don’t buy it personally, they have plenty of reason to worry as the impression I get from certain Formula Journalists is that the might not even be the 4th fastest car let alone the fastest. Lets see how their car looks after the spec changes more into what we’ll see in Melbourne.

    20. People against the Aus gp will do anything. I love the gp but if the majority of people there didn’t want it, then I would think F1 should leave. The problem comes when comes when people will say anything to get rid of it. It is ludicrous to suggest that it has a real effect on the water levels, and trying to pull on peoples heart strings by including people with disabilities into the argument is a bit of a desperate argument.

    21. Lewis smashing Vettel’s lap time by whopping 1 second in Top Gear looks overlooked . Here is the link

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