Mark Webber, Red Bull, Monza, 2013

Webber admits doubts over timing of F1 exit

F1 Fanatic Round-up

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Mark Webber, Red Bull, Monza, 2013In the round-up: Mark Webber says he may be leaving F1 too soon but wants to make the most of his opportunity with Porsche.


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Mark Webber admits Formula 1 motivation was on the wane (BBC)

“I’m probably leaving F1 a year too soon but with the [regulation] changes next season [the introduction of turbo engines with a fuel limit] and the opportunity to join Porsche, it’s the best move for me.”

Rookie diary – Williams? Valtteri Bottas (F1)

“I’ve improved everywhere. On the technical side: making better decisions with the car set-up, giving better feedback to the team, working better with my engineers; and on the racing side: a huge load more experience in qualifying, at race starts and making pit stops, and a better understanding of strategies.”

Frijns makes management changes (Autosport)

“He has now joined forces with Dutch company Just Sports Marketing in a bid to boost his chances of landing sufficient funding to increase his appeal to F1 and GP2 teams.”

Scarbs on tech: Marussia’a Monza set-up (Motorsport Monday)

Chief engineer Dave Greenwood: “This year we haven’t had to do a specific Monza wing, it’s our normal high downforce rear wing, as it’s within out adjustment range.”

Ecclestone reveals truth on Indian GP cut (SportBusiness International)

“The trouble in India is a simple one. The rupee has devalued an enormous amount so it is all very political. We won?t be there next year but after that I hope we will go back.”

Franchitti: Adoration of Saint Jim (ESPN)

“The only sad link to the current era is an apparent need by one or two competitors to carry out days of intense pre-event testing that goes beyond establishing whether the scavenge pump works or the notchy gear shift cuts the palm of your hand to pieces. It may be no surprise to learn that some of these people work in F1.”

IOC upgrades FIA to full recognition status (FIA)

Jean Todt: “This is important news for the 130 National Sporting Authorities the FIA represents. Through their membership of the FIA, they now have the backing of the IOC to engage fully in the work carried out by their local Olympic committee. This will raise the visibility and status of motorsport in their country, and should help inspire more people to get involved.”

Regent quits FIA comms job to focus on Todt campaign (Adam Cooper’s F1 Blog)

“[Pierre] Regent was given the FIA job by Todt only at the start of June, replacing Norman Howell, who went to work for the Ultimate Fighting Championship. Regent was previously the FIA?s international relations advisor and Action for Road Safety project manager.”

Intervista a Robert Doornbos: io, l’America, Villeneuve e la Red Bull (, Italian)

Ex-F1 driver Robert Doornbos says: “Due to circumstances out of my control I was forced to sit out the past two seasons racing. But things are looking up for me now and I’m working on a come back at high level racing.”

Design Sebastian Vettel’s F1 helmet

“You could win the chance to have Sebastian Vettel, Infiniti’s director of performance and triple Formula One world champion, wear a helmet of your design in free practice and qualifying sessions during the US Grand Prix weekend.”


Comment of the day

@Geemac wonders if the new regulations for next year are too conservative:

The rule changes (which I do largely support) do also come with a hefty increase in the minimum weight of the cars. They now have significantly worse power to weight ratios than they did say in 2004 (which is also a nice round ten-year period to work with).

If the stats are to be believed, Toyota’s V10s were putting out about 900bhp in 2004 and the cars weighed 605kg, giving them a power to weight ratio of 1,488bhp/ton (If I have got my sums right). In 2014 they will have a power to weight ratio of 1087bhp/ton (again if I have done my sums right and based on about 750bhp and 690kg minimum weight).

Not exactly truck like performance, but 2014 is still a massive step back power-wise.

From the forum

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to Al and Valentina!

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

Two of Britain’s top F1 drivers have their birthdays today: Damon Hill turns 53 today and Stirling Moss is 84. Happy birthdays to both!

Image ?? Red Bull/Getty

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  • 44 comments on “Webber admits doubts over timing of F1 exit”

    1. “You could win the chance to have Sebastian Vettel, Infiniti’s director of performance and triple Formula One world champion, wear a helmet of your design in free practice and qualifying sessions during the US Grand Prix weekend.”

      There is also a competition to go to Abu Dhabi same rules aply

      I’m probably leaving F1 a year too soon

      Nah… Go eat that Big Mac you have been dreaming with for the last tean years…

      “He has now joined forces with Dutch company Just Sports Marketing in a bid to boost his chances of landing sufficient funding to increase his appeal to F1 and GP2 teams.”

      Maybe a change in aproach.. get some sponsors kid, maybe you will have another chance at rancing…

      BREAKING NEWS – Sebastian Vettel’s wax figure has left Berlin to embark on the 1,093km journey to

      Matches and candles jokes will start in 1,2,3…. Go

      1. @celeste Wow, a very holistic approach to the roundup…:)

        1. Yeah, trying to be more efective in my comments, and all those subjects looked interesting… ;)

      2. No one can hold a candle to Vettel.

        1. is the candle wick sticking out of the correct place?

          1. Yeah, his head

    2. Interesting. I have to say, I can’t really understand Webber citing the regulation changes as a good reason to leave F1. It may have been his best chance to get back on terms since for example the EBD is effectively gone in 2014, no? I’m surprised he isn’t sticking around one more year to find out anyway.

      1. He made it pretty clear in his top gear interview with the “we’ve got to be able to push” comment that the fuel economy runs of next year don’t appeal to him.

        Even without full EBD, Vettel still had enough of an edge in 2010 so unless F1 added driver weight equivalence to the regulations ala Indycar and DTM it probably wouldn’t be enough for a WDC challenge without a bit of luck, which he has been bereft of the last two years.

        Porsche deal is better anyway in the long term and he’ll still get to race Silverstone, Spa, Interlagos, CotA and Le Mans while skipping rubbish circuits like Singapore and Abu Dhabi.

        1. If fuel economy doesn’t appeal to him then endurance racing seems like an odd thing to take up.

          1. @matt90 Believe it or not, the opposite is true. Because endurance racing is so focused on endurance tech – then the tech is so fuel-efficient, and the car so tyre-efficient, that in fact endurance racing is now an exercise in pushing (because the drivers don’t need to do the saving anymore). The tech is so focused on efficiency already that if the drivers were to save tyres and/or fuel, they would end up slower over the stints.

            1. They do push harder for longer than they used to be able to, But there is still a lot of fuel saving & tyre conservation going on in endurance racing.

              Been honest I expected Mark to leave F1 a year or 2 ago because its been clear since 2011 that he doesn’t like the way F1’s gone with things like Pirelli’s tyres & DRS.
              I think back to China 2011, Everyone raving about how brilliant his drive through the field was when Mark himself later called it ‘unsatisfying’ because he was racing upto the back of guys looking forward to having a good scrap but then easily breezing by them with DRS or wish fresher tyres.

            2. @raymondu999 Is that definitely correct? I had the same impression as GT Racer, that although actively conserving the car (including fuel and tyres) is of far less importance than it used to be, it is still an integral part.

      2. His interview on Top Gear made it very clear that he despises the current state of F1 and sees it only getting worse going forward.

      3. 2014 will be a new learning curve for drivers – with 33s of ERS a changed downforce balance and a new engine in the back they all have to learn and adopt their driving styles. And it would be only for 1 or 2 more seasons.
        So I understand why he chose to have this learning experience in the new series where he might spend the next 8-10 years.

        1. @tmf42 @alebelly74 Yeah, I think you’re both right. I can understand why he’s leaving, but if it were me I’d always be thinking what if. And just 1 year, is it really that much more to find out what the new F1 is going to be like?

          I think it’s perhaps the correct decision, but we can see from this recent comment I think that he’s not 100% sure himself!

    3. Forgive me, but I wonder how many people are going to send in helmet designs for Vettel which are all just big knobs :)

      1. That was my first thought :p

      2. if so, they should send a ‘selfie’

        Seeing Vettel constantly win might be utterly boring but he hasn’t done anything worse than anybody else on the grid

      3. @novotny I expect a few “Multi-21, Seb” designs ;)

    4. Now it’s to late to regret Mark. Now, keep calm and carry on.

      1. Maybe Lotus is in his cards :p

    5. Dear Bernie (Even though you probably don’t read F1 Fanatic),

      I have come up with a way to keep the casual fans happy with exciting racing, and keep the purists and fanatics from being alienated by contrived rules. Two ideas:

      1. Change the format of the race meeting to:
      Saturday Morning: Current Qualifying format.
      Saturday afternoon: “Qualifying” sprint race, 1/3 Grand Prix Distance, worth 1/4 points for the top 10. DRS enabled.
      Sunday: Normal Race, full grand prix distance, full points, DRS disabled, refuelling allowed.

      2. Change the length of the races. Is it surprising that with every race the same length, every race runs similarly? Give us two half distance sprint races at Monaco and a 500km endurance race at Spa or something like that.

      PLEASE, don’t continue alienating the fanatics with flippy wings and explodey tyres.

      1. Interesting suggestions. I liked the recent piece that suggested movable wings and the like would be more interesting than DRS, and I for one think they should be allowed DRS anywhere they like or not at all.

        Actually no, I just want dynamic aero under the control of the driver. If that’s what Keith was advocating – I thought he was – I think it’s a great idea. It adds to the mental workload of the driver, and allows supreme talent to shine through (in theory). I appreciate it is more dangerous, but then, isn’t the whole point of F1 is that it’s driving within the limits of the machine and your ability? I don’t think making it harder necessarily makes it more dangerous.

        I might be talking ******** though. It happens quite frequently I’m told

        1. Sorry for that mangled sentence. I’m fairly refreshed indeed.

      2. I believe that there should be a points allocation for qualifying, like with GP2, that could keep the championships alive for longer.

        1. It also brings the ‘risk’ of a championship been decided after a qualifying session rather than a race.
          Its happened before in other categories that award points for qualifying & fans always complain when it does, Its something the race organizers & broadcasters also generally dislike.

          As to the initial comment, I personally don’t like the idea of 2 races or shorter races for F1, Leave those sort of arrangements to the lower categories. F1 should be about 1 race on a Sunday afternoon like its always been.

          The idea of split races was something put forward to fans in the FIA fan-survey in 2008 & it was something that got virtually no fan support. Question of shorter races also got very little fan support.

          Something else to consider is the support categories, Under that proposal when do GP2/GP3/Porsche Supercup & other categories that run have there practice/qualifying & Races? They only get 30mins of practice & 30mins of qualifying with the weekend schedule as it is.

          1. My idea was that Practice 3 session disappears and is replaced by the qualifying session. The cars don’t enter Parc Ferme until after the Qualifying race. So it doesn’t actually involve any extra track time, and the set up of the cars can still be modified up until the end of running on a Sunday afternoon.

            This sort of arrangement (Qualifying races on a Saturday), is what is used for the Australian V8 Supercars series, and while not particularly popular with drivers, it makes a heck of a TV specacle, exactly what Bernie wants.

          2. points well made @gt_racer. I would say that instead of macking a mockery of the race by doing some “sprintrace” thing on saturday, there should be more room to enjoy the support races. Maybe even try to get more of it broadcasted so fans can watch.
            That way we get good racing on saturday. And we see the new and coming talents. Off course the current GP2 format is not perfect for that, because there are too many drivers with a budget, but neither the quality or the size of budget needed to break into F1!

    6. Nice article on Clark/Franchitti.

      Good news for Indy Car fans and for JPM. Should be a good ride with Penske.

      Hopefully good news for Frijns. Would be nice to see him in F1 someday.

      When drivers should retire is always a tough question. At least Webber is leaving on his own terms.

      I think Bottas has improved although it is difficult to demonstrate with the current state of the Williams car. He has shown himself to be able to keep up, most of the time, with a more experienced driver who is supposed to be fast and Bottas has made far fewer errors than his more senior teammate. I sincerely hope he is able to stay on at Williams and that the car is much better in 2014.

    7. Strange to see Autosport pick up on that news a whopping 5 days after it was announced in Dutch media. Here’s a forum post I made at the time.

      1. @npf1 Somehoe, news regarding Frijns travels slowly. had reported Frijns’s departure from Sauber on twitter a full week before it was announced officially.

      2. They reported on him being dropped on the day. This is him changing management in order to re-secure a drive.

        1. Actually, he added a management party for his commercial relations, he still has the same ‘general’ manager, who also manages Hulkenberg.

          And it was announced 5 days ago on sites like f1today, with the same quotes and names. So this story has little to do with Sauber.

    8. We might be losing HP but torque may double or even triple over the N/A V8s. Boost is a wonderful thing.
      So don’t feel down about next year’s power units! They will deliver similar speeds and spectacle, but in a different way.

    9. Too soon? Hahaha.

    10. Just had a look at the rules for the Vettel competition and discover it was for US residents only…….

      1. @formula-1 this one is for the Abu Dhabi GP and is open for every one above 18

    11. Juan Pablo Montoya – former Formula 1 Grand prix winner (7) and 1998 Formula 3000 & 1999 CART champion aswell as 2000 Indy 500 winner – is back in single-seater racing with Penske in IZOD IndyCar Series for 2014 and surely beyond.

      The 37 year-old colombian is making the move from NASCAR and that is the best news of yesterday for me.
      I love the racer he was in CART, and F1, then he disappeared of my radar because his motivation was down.

      But, come on! Montoya back in IndyCar is huge!

      1. @jeff1s I am a big Montoya fan.. Hope Lots convince him to join F1 like they convinced Kimi.. It would be damn cool to watch Montoya and Hulk at Lotus..

    12. I’m still a little disappointed that India has been cut from next year’s calendar.
      I actually quite liked the circuit layout and it made for some decent racing, even though the only two race’s it’s held have been convincingly won by Sebastian Vettel.

      The second sector looked like an amazing ride for the drivers. (It’s also fun in the video games!)

    13. To be honest Mark, I personally think your timing is almost spot on. There’s a new regulation change, so it makes for the perfect opportunity to bring in fresh blood in Ricciardo. It also means that Mark – an older driver – isn’t adapting to an almost completely new car.

      He still has enough years left in him to be competitive in a new series though and he’ll be joining a new team with vast resources and a youthful passion yet with the history in the series. They’ll probably be there to stay for a while too, so he can settle at Porsche.

      Also, he’s been getting not worse relative to Sebastian but Sebastian has been getting better, so really 2010 was his last big chance at the world championship. So he’s not really losing much.

      The timing’s perfect as far as I’m concerned. All he needs to do now is win a race in his last season (Brazil perhaps?) and that’d be near the perfect send-off. Farewell Mark!

    14. I just hope Vettel melts down when the heat is on.

      1. That is almost guaranteed not to happen. Alonso is far more susceptible to that anyway.

    15. Following a two year period of provisional recognition by the International Olympic Committee (IOC), the FIA’s status has been upgraded to full recognition in accordance with the sporting and governance standards of the Olympic Charter.

      Does that mean someday we can have a F1 category in Olympics, how cool would that be.. The winning drivers would earn the medals for their country as well as the constructors…

      How many F1 Fanatics would want F1 to be part of Olympics??

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