2014 a “huge opportunity” for Mercedes – Rosberg

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In the round-up: Nico Rosberg is unsure whether Mercedes should focus on this year or next.


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Rosberg wegen 2014 zwiegespalten (Auto Motor und Sport, German)

Rosberg says “next year is a huge opportunity” for Mercedes “because of the large changes” and he’s in two minds about whether the team should concentrate their efforts on this year, as they have a winning car, or preparing for 2014.

Rush – Introducing James Hunt (YouTube)

Jim’s Kanonloppet (Peter Windsor)

Jim [Clark] calculated during the lunch break that he could finish third in Heat Two and still win overall (providing he crossed the line no more than 1min 35.2sec behind Brabham) and so, on a wet afternoon, he did exactly that: Jack duly won the second heat; Jim let Trevor finish second – and thus the Kanonloppet was Jim’s.”


Comment of the day

Yahya thinks Red Bull aren’t casting their net wide enough in their search for a replacement for Mark Webber:

They seem to be restricting themselves to their own driver programme which is fair enough if you are a midfield team but it doesn’t make sense if you are challenging for titles.

I recall earlier in the season that Horner said he wanted the best drivers available, surely drivers like Kimi Raikkonen or Nico Hulkenberg should be at the top of their lists even before the Toro Rosso pair? Next season there are going to be regulation changes and there is a good chance Red Bull may not have the best all round car any more, so they are going to need all the points they can possibly get from both drivers.

Simply relying on Vettel to get majority of the points and podiums isn’t going to be enough. By signing Ricciardo they will be sending a message to me that they just seem desperate to get someone from Red bull’s driver academy so that the programme gives the view of being ‘vindicated’ because to me, apart from a few qualifying outings, Ricciardo has done nothing special and neither has Vergne for that matter. Saying the car is difficult to drive isn’t really an excuse in my opinion, we have seen examples like Alonso dragging a Minardi amongst midfield runners on his debut season as proof that talent will always shine through.
Yahya (@Ferrari_412t)

From the forum

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On this day in F1

Parnelli Jones turns 80 years old today. His connection to F1 is through his short-lived team which appeared in the championship in the mid-seventies.

But it was in American single-seater racing that Jones enjoyed his greatest successes. Particularly the Indianapolis 500, which he won 50 years ago in controversial circumstances as rivals claimed his car should have been disqualified for an oil leak.

Four years later he came close to scoring a second win, this time driving a radical turbine-engined car, but a failure put him out with three laps to go.

Image © Daimler/Hoch Zwei

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70 comments on “2014 a “huge opportunity” for Mercedes – Rosberg”

  1. Well, if Mercedes want to go the way of another German car manufacturer, then concentrate on next year.

    1. @david-a agreed, take your opportunities as they come. They may not come around again.

    2. If they have a reasonable chance then they have to go for it. Best deciding after the next 2 races how much to put towards next year. They already have a team on 2014, so if after monza they don’t make a dent into red bulls lead then perhaps full steam ahead 2014

    3. Is Rosberg saying this because he’s not really in contention anymore and Lewis is?

      1. @yoshif8tures
        Probably. I think if Rosberg was 50 points behind championship leader, driving an expected consistent race winning car and 9 races to go his opinion would be different, but his view is fair still. However, I think Mercedes has enough cooks in the kitchen to serve “both meals”

        1. They have more than enough Technical Directors :)

    4. Spot on ! they should concentrate on 2013 . Try to win the Asian races. That would be a big boost . And as @jcost says , both meals can be served ;-) . But Rosberg need not have commented on this as it’s RB ‘s duty to decide . His opinion may well be because he is no longer in contention . But that’s natural . Nothing surprising.

    5. If Merc gives up on 2013 then it gives RBR the breathing room to do the same – so it’s pretty much a lose-lose. Imo, an early focus on 2014 would only benefit McLaren or Ferrari. It’s still a gamble but seems there is not much to win for them this year anyway.

      1. @tmf42 Ferrari like Mercedes already have a team working on the 2014 Ferrari. Rory Byrne is full steam on that project with other top members, hence why this years car is being done by an experience but second string team of engineers.

        1. @magillagorilla By now every team has engineers working on the new car. imo, the question is about limited resources like proto-typing, tooling, CFD and other simulations, etc.

          1. @tmf42 my point was Ferrari have had a second team working on their ’14 car since the start of the season like Mercedes. These are the only two I know of that started early on and bought up and brought back engineers and technical crew. I’m sure others are working on it but probably not as far with it as those two claim to be.

  2. Enough with Rush trailers :( ! not only we already know the main story, but we’re watching the whole movie via trailers? how many have they released so far?

    1. Totally agree @fer-no65 once I’ve decided to watch a film (with Rush decided after the first time I saw a trailer) I always try to avoid more trailers so it doesn’t ruin the story for me, otherwise you’re just watching an extended version of what you’ve already seen. Don’t understand why some ppl need to be shown 10-12 times to get them hooked, but seems its them who this extended advertising is aimed at

      1. @3dom I watched a couple just to get my excitement boosted up, but there has been like 5 of them… totally unnecessary !

        1. @fer-no65 – To us, maybe. But not to the casual movie-goer, the Joe Average who wouldn’t know a Formula 1 car from a lawn mower. And since RUSH isn’t a multi-million dollar juggernaut like THE AVENGERS, it can’t rely on word-of-mouth to generate publicity. It needs those trailers – especially so close to release – in order to keep itself in the forefront of the audience’s minds.

          1. @prisoner-monkeys still, it’s a trend these days that movies release ton of trailers, so you get to the cinema and you’re basically watching all those trailers together plus some new bits.

            Even the jokes make the trailers…

    2. I’ve watched like 3 or 4 already, it predict a dope of a film

    3. Didn’t half of the paddock watch this at the USGP last year? What are they waiting for in releasing this film?

  3. 180bhp Go Kart‽ Bloody hell the power to weight ratio on that must be fairly similar to an F1 car (excluding driver)!

    1. Man I’d probably kill myself on one of those! ;-)

    2. That would be awesome in Division 1 Superkart bodywork (rear wing etc. They normally (with 100hp) match F3 cars. Imagine a 180hp Superkart!!)

      1. @xjr15jaaag don’t let me or @3dom anywhere near your hypothetical creation ;)

  4. Part of me does wonder if there could be a little conflict down the line within Red Bull – if not now, then a little down the line. Marko, no less than 5 years after finding his first hotshot, is obviously going to be pushing for one of the Toro Rosso drivers. Whereas, perhaps if I was Horner – the guy on the pitwall – I’d be considering the Raikkonens and Hulkenbergs.

    Either way, I think it’ll be a while yet before we hear a decision. I’m just glad there’s a realistic chance of seeing more shifting in the top teams than in recent years. Couple that with the rule changes, and we should have an interesting 2014!

  5. Absolutely,most definitely they should go for 2013. Like Dizzy is alluding to above me, BMW waited for 2009 to go for the title, they bombed and now look where they are.

    Merc should make the most of their chances now. Otherwise they could end up with no title in 2013 *or* 2014.

    1. They could always recruit more personnel ;-)

  6. Michael Brown (@)
    12th August 2013, 0:26

    Agree with COTD. I hope Hulkenberg will get a seat somewhere at the top.

    1. Probably the best driver who’s not driving for top 5 team.

  7. Nico Rosberg is unsure whether Mercedes should focus on this year or next.

    Doubtful that Hamilton is conflicted regarding this quandary.

    Granted, Rosberg is further behind in the WDC standings, yet there is half the season left to race and who knows what will happen? Rosberg was likely responding to a reporter question, but hell, leave that worry to the team and let everybody know you’re going to drive every race like it might be your last!

  8. I think Hulk has earned his shot at a top ride as well. It’s ashamed that the politics and the money (paid drivers) will stop him from getting that shot. Maybe even the top drivers are going to have to start hiring marketing firms to help them find sponsors. Very sad that the sport has come to this…I want to see the best drivers.

    1. There are no paydrivers in the top-end teams. Perhaps Perez, but I believe he earned his seat based on his results. So there are now paydrivers getting in the way of Hulkenberg. Webber is leaving, Massa seems on his way out (again) and who knows what will happen at Lotus. Still plenty off oppertunities, I’d say.

      1. Todd (@braketurnaccelerate)
        12th August 2013, 6:52

        How much money did Alonso bring with him via; the Santander sponsorship? Yea, about that…

        1. yeah because alonso is just another Diniz….

          1. technically, every driver with significant sponsorship is a pay driver; vettel had red bull backing, hamilton had mercedes, alonso santander, etc

        2. something like 40/45 million euro, Ferrari pays a big part of it as his salary
          BTW i wonder why drivers of the caliber of narain karthikeyan or tonio liuzzi doesn’t get this kind of sponsorship ??

          1. Because they’re crap compared to Alonso/Vettel/Hamilton etc. I mean, if you were the head of the whatever department at a multinational company and you wanted to associate yourself with a Formula 1 driver, you’d pay over the odds to be associated with the best, rather than pay peanuts to have your logo on a tail-end driver who gets little to no TV airtime.

  9. Not sure how you could make a case for hulk over the TR boys, he hasn’t been setting the world on fire this year.

    1. but that is just the car not being up to it, …. ehm, yeah.

      Seriously, I do think Hulkenberg is a far more promising and developed driver to take on for a leading team than either of the STR guys.

      1. Hulkenburg is a future WDC, simple as.

      2. I do think Hulkenberg is a far more promising and developed driver to take on for a leading team than either of the STR guys

        His CV in junior categories speaks for itself , just have a look at it & you will find that he was even better than Vettel, Hamilton, Alonso, Button & Raikkonen
        By your logic none of the drivers that i have mentioned would have driven for a top team

        1. That way of arguing doesn’t add up @tifoso1989 – The fact that Hulkenberg had a great junior career does really not mean that other promising drivers who had less of that but are (by now) proven in F1 would be less worthy.
          I really do not see any of my logic reflected anywhere in your post.

          Sure, Hulk showed promise throughout his junior career. But he also set a pole in a Williams, led races in a FI and in a Sauber, in other words he impressed enough to show the junior promise is still there.

          if anything, compare Hulk and RIC/JEV and their careers up to now.

    2. You cannot make fire without sticks ,stones or another fire . As simple as that

    3. My point is that you can’t claim that if the TR boys were as good as Alonso/Hulk, they would drag a slow car into a high race position, then completely ignore that Hulk has 7 points and has done worse than the TR boys with arguably a very similar piece of machinery.

  10. Completely agree with the COTD.

  11. Best COTD in a while actually .

  12. http://www.iltasanomat.fi/formula1/art-1288589111747.html
    Ilta-Sanomat is reporting that Räikkönen has already decided to go to Ferrari. Ilta-Sanomat isn’t the most reliable new source on earth, but they don’t usually make up stories (atleast not sport related) and in 2009 they were reporting quite early that Räikkönen would leave Ferrari.

    They have “multiple sources” but of course at this point of the season there are lots of rumours in the air and everyone has their own reasons to tell media different stories, so it’s hard to tell if this story is true or not.

    1. Hmmm. I’ve always thought Turun Sanomat had some close ties with the Räikkönen camp, based upon some of the scoops they have been able to publish. But Ilta-Sanomat? I’m dubious.

    2. After how things ended between Kimi and Ferrari I doubt they’ll ever reunite. He did say that he has nothing against his former teams but still…And Ferrari hasn’t exactly impressed during the past years. I think if Kimi does leave Lotus, Red Bull is the only serious option. Anyway, hopefully Ilta-Sanomat is wrong:)

    3. At least it would explain what he meant with “Deciding based on the opportunities with the new regulations” Lotus and RBR have both Renault engines, so his statement wouldn’t make much sense if there isn’t a third option.
      But what they did to him in 2009 was still not nothing. Anyway, we’ll see.

  13. if red bull really want the to strongest drivers they would have to go for kimi… but if that fails I think they should go for a Toro Roso driver. I’m sure that if Red Bull choose Hulkenburg over ricciardo or vergne it wouldn’t send a good message to other young prodigies about joining their team. If they choose hulkenburg, toro roso should just quit because red bull could get at least 5 years or more with the pairing. if they choose kimi its a different story because he has only has a year or 2 left.

    1. I don’t see why people think Kimi has only one or two years left. He might very well decide to leave by then, but I can’t see a reason why he couldn’t compete in Formula One for five years or more if he wanted.

      He’s three years younger than Webber and even though Mark is leaving the series now, I don’t think he has lost his touch that much (Vettel has just gotten way better over the years). Schumacher is ten years older than Kimi and he was competing until last season – and while Shcumacher’s comeback didn’t go well, it probably wasn’t because of his age.

      In my opinion Kimi is driving now better than ever, so it’s hard to see why he’d be doomed to suddenly lose his pace by 2016.

      1. Absolutely agree with you, there’s no reason why Kimi would stay just for one or 2 more years or why he’d suddenly lose his pace. He’ll stay for as long as he’s enjoying competing, which is the reason why he came back. He probably won’t stay in F1 until the age of Schumacher but nothing says he’ll stay just a year or two.

        1. Kimi should stay as long as he wants… just for his personality :-)

        2. He knows what he’s doing.

  14. It’s easy for Rosberg to write off 2013 as he is out of competition for this years title. Next year is totally unknown and if you ask me it could be anyone who can outsmart the opposition in the title chase (remember Brawn 2009?). They are no guaranties cause you don’t have a clue what the others are up to. It’s stupid not to take this years chance.

    1. True. Force India will probably win in 2014 xD. Actually that’s quite frightening, PDR becoming a WDC!

      1. @full-throttle-f1 god he’d be about as emotional as Kimi Räikkönen! I wouldn’t be bothered by that though – Scotland hasn’t had a world champion since Jackie Stewart and I’d be happy for that to change! :D

        1. DC is the world champion of wearing tighty-whitey jeans :-)

      2. Just imagine it would be Sutil doing that!

        1. With his neck on the line…

          he might choke

  15. COTD completely confuses itself.

    If you say Alonso can mix it in the midfield in a Minardi, then that’s exactly what Ricciardo is doing in the Torro Rosso, which is basically a Minardi with a bit of a money.

    1. Well, with that Red Bull money, Toro Rosso’s cars aren’t Minardis and aren’t as bad as Minardis. They are expected to be midfield cars nowadays.

  16. Mercedes, in my opinion(and i’m not a fan, just look at my avatar), should be able to manage the 2 situations, keep an ey on 2013 and keeping the effort to present the last results, and also to work in the 2014 season to look sharp from the beginning, not using ilegal tests to their work know…

    1. When it comes to testing legally or whatnot, I never understood why the teams just don’t coordinate a “non-championship race” which they could then have whatever they want to do for “practice”, “qualy”, and the “race” itself? With nothing on the line in terms of the championship, any of the teams could participate.
      I imagine there are rules that forbid non-championship races nowadays, but I think it may be a rather clever way to circumvent the ‘no testing’ policy if there is in fact no rule against it.

  17. WilliamB (@william-brierty)
    12th August 2013, 14:59

    @Ferrari_412t I completely agree. After initially hearing of Webber’s retirement I straight-away thought that Hulkenberg would be the natural candidate for the seat, being young, extremely talented and with no contract for 2014. However as I was ever more vehemently shown to be wrong, Red Bull have rather shown themselves to be impaired by their own Young Driver Programme. Unlike a normal team, who would choose a driver either from the junior series or more likely from other teams, with Raikkonen and Hulkenberg being the candidates “normal” teams would have chosen from, Red Bull have had the obligation to clear the chronic backlog in the Red Bull Young Driver Programme, with drivers like Antonio Felix da Costa and eventually Mitch Evans or Carlos Sainz Jr banging even louder on the doors of F1. Because of this the extremely worthy candidates of Raikkonen and Hulkenberg have been eliminated, and the compelling prospect of seeing Vettel challenged by a teammate dies as Ricciardo signs on the dotted line. Ricciardo is a talent, but one that requires a few more years before it can blossom, and certainly more experience would serve his rather unspectacular race pace a great deal of benefit; an area where Vettel will humiliate Ricciardo next year. Ricciardo has gone from a HRT to a Red Bull in just two and a half years, and I think it will serve as something of a shock come the Australian GP next year, certainly it will be a bigger shock to Ricciardo than it would be to the race-ready drivers of Raikkonen and Hulkenberg.

  18. I disagree with the COTD. I see what is meant by those comments but that’s not all of it, besides the current candidates for the RBR seat, I see Hulkenberg as the only other candidate. That’s because, personally, I rate him higher than PdR. The STR pair are much better than the previous pair, and I think DR very much deserves this seat, people complain that younger drivers don’t get a chance and yet complaints are still made when they are given chances. RAI vs RIC is a fair consideration, add HUL in there and I think they’ve got the best candidates for their seat.

  19. Jack (@jackisthestig)
    12th August 2013, 19:43

    It’s hard to see Kimi staying at Lotus next year if they are as strapped-for-cash as they appear to be. They can’t afford to continue development of the current car or seemingly pay Kimi the latest instalment of his salary. Although their cars look pretty full of logos, Lotus (cars/group) don’t actually pay anything, Genii are just the owners and where the driver’s names are displayed there were supposed to be Honeywell logos but that deal seemed to fall through.

    If Lotus got Kimi off their books and poached Maldonado from Williams along with the same sort of money they get from Venezuela then they would effectively be around $50 Million better off per season (-$20M for Kimi’s salary, +$30M from Venezuela).

  20. I’m not sure what was meant about Alonso dragging the Minardi among the midfield runners. Granted that only the top eight places were awarded points back then, Alonso still failed to challenge the mid-field that year. In fact he was bested at Minardi by his teammate, Tarso Marques. Long story short, there was nothing in FA’s time at Minardi to suggest that he would one day be F1 champion. The example of Alonso at Minardi actually favors promoting Ricciardo to RB.

    1. Go back & actually watch the 2001 season.
      There were several instances where Alonso had the Minardi well up the order battling with cars that were significantly better than the Minardi.

      You say Marques ‘bested’ him & In the final championship table thats an accurate statement, However in terms of speed & performance its completely false because Alonso completely destroyed Marques in terms of both speed & race performance.
      Marques was ahead of Alonso in the championship based on 2 9th place finishes in races which featured a lot of retirements (Brazil & Canada) & in which Alonso was soundly ahead of Marques in both races until his car failed.

      There was plenty in 2001 to suggest Alonso was something special & thats why people began talking about him as a future star & why his race return with Renault in 2003 had a fair bit of excitement behind it in the F1 media.

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