Adrian Sutil, Force India, Singapore, 2013

Sutil: Teenage “kids” aren’t ready for F1

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Adrian Sutil, Force India, Singapore, 2013In the round-up: Teenage drivers such as Daniil Kvyat and Sergey Sirotkin are too young for F1, says Adrian Sutil.


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Teenagers are too young for F1 – Sutil (ESPN)

“I think it’s far too early [for them]. They are kids and you need to be a grown up man here in Formula One.”

Russians at Sauber and Toro Rosso look young for F1 ?ǣ but money talks (The Guardian)

Sergey Sirotkin: “It’s a bit different driving an F1 car. I need to get used to the power-steering. Our preparation programme has just started so I am not quite ready, but by the time the first race comes, I will be ready, I know that. There is nothing I am afraid of. I am looking forward to it.”

Di Resta set for High Court (The Telegraph)

Paul di Resta’s long-running legal dispute with his former manager Anthony Hamilton is due to go before the High Court at the end of next month, it has emerged, with the British driver describing the situation as ‘unfortunate’ as he battles to secure his future in Formula One.”

F1 sale weakened chief Bernie Ecclestone?s position, court told (FT, registration required)

“Mr Miles, representing Mr Ecclestone on the second day of the case, said Constantin Medien?s allegation ‘simply does not add up’. BayernLB, which owned the 47 per cent stake in F1 before selling it to CVC, had ‘been trying to sell its stake for years’ and was ‘delighted’ with the offer from CVC, Mr Miles said.”

Kimi Raikkonen: I have blossomed at Lotus (Gulf News)

“These past two years have been good for me. I have enjoyed driving for a team that has allowed me to be completely myself and also gain success on track.”

Teams willing to aid Pirelli test plans (Autosport)

Lotus team principal Eric Boullier: “If it doesn’t cost a penny, yes. We could support this.”

Drivers say claims of doping in F1 are all smoke and no fire (The National)

Former FIA medical delegate Gary Hartstein: “By definition, if it is not on the prohibited list, then you can take it all day every day and it?s not doping. You may get a performance advantage, you may die, any number of things might happen, but it?s not doping ?ǣ maybe stupid, but not doping.”

Bernie Ecclestone says India has to decide on its F1 future (IBN)

“Next year looks tough, but we should return in 2015. We want to even go beyond the five-year contract and for that to happen, there are certain issues that need to be sorted out in your country. Plus, there is a contract extension clause in the deal.”

F1 Race Stars Powered Up Edition Coming To Wii U! (Codemasters)

“Coming this December to the Wii U exclusively to the Nintendo eShop is a fast-to-the-fun arcade racing game for all ages, expanded with fantastic new content and features to take advantage of Wii U hardware. F1 Race Stars is back, and it?s Powered up!”

F1 star Lewis Hamilton meets child labourers in India (Metro)

“The former world champion, a global ambassador for Save the Children, took time out after Sunday?s Indian grand prix to travel to Calcutta and meet youngsters who used to make bricks for a living.”

Newcastle United journalist ban emulates Sir Alex Ferguson arrogance (The Guardian)

Marina Hyde: “I can just picture Lewis [Hamilton], pacing the corridors of his mansion in the land to which he has exiled himself ?ǣ Monaco, having decamped there from Switzerland ?ǣ wondering how he could possibly contribute more to society. If he ever puts his finger on the answer, I do hope he lets us know.”


Comment of the day

Owen Conwell asks if there are other countries more deserving of a place on the world championship calendar than Abu Dhabi.

It’s no doubt that the Yas Marina circuit is a major architectural achievement and a world class facility. But it should concern fans of Formula One that country?s with no racing history, no team and driver involvement, few fans and questionable politics and documented human rights abuses seem to get handed a grand prix no questions asked. Just so long as you fork over the billions demanded by Bernie and the FIA and you get your own boring cookie cutter track with little personality that no driver likes.

It should also concern fans that France, a country that founded grand prix racing, has a rich and varied history in the sport, has two drivers on the grid and supplies the most successful engine in F1 history to four teams somehow has been absent track wise for five years and counting. If Bernie and the FIA would give France the level of support it deserves, ticket sales for a French GP would be through the roof.
Something is not right here.

Owen Conwell (@Skitty4lb)

From the forum

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to Gqsm, Jon Finn and Pejte!

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

Happy birthday to Red Bull’s reserve driver Sebastien Buemi who is 25 today.

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  • 147 comments on “Sutil: Teenage “kids” aren’t ready for F1”

    1. Chris (@tophercheese21)
      31st October 2013, 0:04

      It’s a grown mans’ game. But every once in a while, one comes along that has what it takes from the get go, and from then on proves his worth.

      1. Any successful trend is followed until the trend reverses, starting younger and younger again seems a common trend in sport at the moment but maturity and experience will return to the equation one day.

        1. Agreed, and I think that will be if/when they no longer need pay-as-you-play drivers.

    2. So back in 2007 a 19 year old boy made his debut at US GP… 6 years later he is the 4 times Champion of the World… talent and not age is what matter in F1.

      As lots of people staded in the GP3/GP2 thread Kyav seem to be the best choice for Toro Rosso in terms of talent and result, so kudos to Toro Rosso to see talent and not age…

      1. @celeste eeeeeeeverytime there’s been a guy that age, people complain. Vettel had a couple of friday drives befure the US GP, but it happened with Alguersuari, Kimi and now Kyav.

        Let the guy be… would it be better for him to wait another year and do GP2? yeah, probably. But jumping from GP3 to F1 isn’t that unreal…

        1. @fer_no65 Examples of what you said:

          Before of the US GP in 2007, Martin Brundle said:

          “I still think if I was sitting beside (Vettel) on the grid tomorrow, I’d have a bit of a wary eye on him. A teenager in his first ever Grand Prix at the sharp end of the grid – does he really know where he wants to be pressing the brake pedal down into Turn 1?”

          And after the race:
          Driver of the Day

          “Three choices really. Vettel – great job for him – made a few lairy errors early on; I think Kovalainen drove well too; but it has to be Lewis Hamilton.”


          1. @fer-no65 guess @celeste confused your @ with an undercore hehehe too!!!

          2. @celeste If I remember correctly, Vettel even had to take avoiding action in turn 1 as there was an accident between Ralf and David (?) so not a bad first start for Vettel.

            1. @mike-dee yes, he had to do that

        2. isn’t unreal, I agree. But when stays out talented drivers to participate a guy like this Russian, I suppose the sport LOSES a lot with that moves. Actually, F1 is not about talent, it’s all about money! That’s why I do not see f1 anymore.

      2. Indeed, it’s a tricky subject. I kind of agree with Sutil, back in the day you needed to be in a physical condition that it’s not achieved until the mid twenties in order to drive in F1. But cars have changed dramatically since then. Nowadays a younger (yet extremely fit) body can cope with the G-forces a modern car generates. And it doesn’t take away any of the challenge of driving an F1 car, which is, despite our complains about the engines, still a pretty powerful beast.

      3. Back then we had unlimited in-season testing where you could use the rookies as much as you wanted before putting them on the grid.

        So you can’t compare the experience of 19 Years old kid back in 2006-2007 to one in 2012-2013.

        1. What about Jaime Alguersuari in 2009 then? He currently holds the record for being the youngest starter in F1, being only 19 at the time, and he had no opportunity to test the car before participating in the Hungarian GP that year.
          Despite all of the dire predictions being made about him being too inexperienced, Alguersuari didn’t cause any problems at all during that race weekend – most of the incidents that weekend involved much older and more experience drivers than Alguersuari.

      4. I’m older than all the young guys mentioned for F1 drives lately. Do I get a drive? ;-)

        Seriously, skills are more important than age. Experience helps, but as already mentioned, look at Kimi, look at Vettel, etc. Drivers of any age either make it in F1, or not.

        If Sutil already had a contract for next season his concerns might have more validity. I do feel for drivers in F1 for several years that either do not have a true opportunity to shine or maybe just don’t quite enough skills to stand out. It is one of the most unforgiving job markets in the world to be an F1 driver.

      5. Kvyat seems to be the best choice for Toro Rosso in terms of talent and result, so kudos to Toro Rosso to see talent and not age.

        @celeste Age is completely irrelevant I agree, but what about experience? After reading Jenson’s opinion (which I think is more relevant than any of us mortals may have) in The Guardian article now I have some doubts.

        What I agree completely with him is that next year will be the worst to be a rookie, so it if he does well against Vergne then we have our next Vettel that’s for sure.

        1. @mantresx but how are you suppose to get experience with the current rules? That´s the reason RBR have a Jr team so young talent drivers can get experience…

          And how old are you old enough to get a drive?

          Those were Jenson circunstances and I respect what he said, but it is not a rule and if we don´t get young people a chance how are we suppose to find the champion of the future?

          1. but how are you suppose to get experience with the current rules?

            I was gonna say friday practice sessions like Bottas did last season, but I don’t think Red Bull wants him to stop racing for a year, I guess he’ll just have to rely on the extra tests next year.

      6. @celeste indeed. I think it was in 2007 that Seb crashed into Mark Webber in Japan and the latter said “that’s what happens when they put kids driving a F1 car”


        1. @jcost @celeste

          Webber said: “It’s kids, isn’t it? Kids with not enough experience to do a good job and then they **** it all up”

          He was referring to both Vettel and Hamilton though – Hamilton for driving stupidly and Vettel for crashing into him.

      7. RE: “kudos to Toro Rosso to see talent and not age”. apparently they see both, but the age-thing matters quite a lot to them too. in a recent interview Dietrich Mateschitz plainly said: “Finally, Kvyat is only 19 and da Costa 22 – that fact made the decision easier.”

        so there, the team owner believes this age is actually an advantage.

        1. While I fully appreciate that ‘kids’ can succeed in F1, such as SV, I think it has been well pointed out that experience is the more important issue, and the main thing I think that should be avoided is taking on a ‘rich kid’ for his money. I don’t think SV was one of those. I’ll leave it up to the individual teams to decide when a ‘kid’ is ready, and would simply caution that without the experience to go along with the money they may bring, there is more likely than not only squandered resources ahead. ie. an awful lot of money could be wasted with drivers who can’t communicate well nor help advance the team.

      8. Kvyat is not a good exemple, this Russian kid only have one big difference MONEY!

    3. We all know there are dozen of countries that deserve a GP, much more than the asian rounds.

      But… tradition, and all that is now rendered useless. Austria wouldn’t have a GP next year if Red Bull didn’t want to. Money make things work these days, it’s capitalism at its best. Have the money? we’ll be there, no matter how.

      It’s Mafia-like. “We do it for the money, we don’t care the reasons”. They don’t care if the track will be empty either…

      1. That’s the state of affairs…

        South Africa

        1. Oh I would love a return to Estoril.

      2. Funnily enough, I as sort of thinking of this overnight, and wondered which Grand Prix events could survive on their own from spectator receipts etc if they didn’t have to pay so large a fee to CVC.
        I came up with list of races that I thought could survive in their own right – Brazil, Italy, Japan, UK, Germany, Monaco, Canada . . .
        Wasn’t sure about Spain, Malaysia, Australia, or even Belgium or Hungary.
        And I thought these had no hope- Abu Dhabi, Bahrain, China, Korea, India.
        Singapore, USA . . . I have no idea.
        This is discounting any earnings from TV as well, so it’s almost a ‘back to the sixties’ commercial model.
        Any thoughts?

        1. Yes. Operate on facts, not speculation.

          If a GPs bottom line has a loss which is less than what is paid to CVC each year then they can stand by themselves as you put it.

          The information is out there. Go get em’ Tiger.

    4. Daniel (@collettdumbletonhall)
      31st October 2013, 0:24

      I find it hard to believe Lewis Hamilton’s cry to end child labour and complaints about wealth inequality when he pays no income tax at all. I have no problem with him saying that and being wealthy but he leased he could do is not move to a state where you pay no taxes whilst sitting on 15 million pounds a year or so.
      Actions speak louder than words.

      1. I’m not sure how paying income tax in the UK is supposed to combat child labour, perhaps he has other ideas on how best to invest his money.

        1. Jack (@jackisthestig)
          31st October 2013, 10:08

          I’m no lefty but it does seem a bit cheeky to take the moral high ground over child labour when you go out of your way to avoid directly contributing to society. His big red private jet does look very snazzy though.

        2. @george It doesn’t combat it, but when some of his peers (Mark Webber, Fernando Alonso) are voluntarily living in and paying taxes to the state (UK & Spain respectively), it’s hard to look on it with a favourable light.

          You can understand him leaving the UK to get away from the press (and 50% taxation), but he has since moved between tax havens.

        3. Daniel (@collettdumbletonhall)
          31st October 2013, 10:47

          Taxes go into foreign aid and he also moaned about wealth inequality. Yeah, private jets.

          1. The UK contributed 0.7% of its GNI to overseas aid. If you’re Lewis Hamilton why lose 50% of your income when only 0.7% of that is going to go to a cause you feel strongly about. He could contribute far more to charitable causes from his own pocket than paying tax and letting the government do it for him.

            Don’t take this to mean that I agree with Hamilton paying no tax, I just don’t agree with the argument that ‘he doesn’t pay tax therefore he doesn’t care’.

            1. Whist I can’t comment on the accuracy of the figures you stated, I fully agree with you. Whilst on paper it does seem cheeky to leave so he doesn’t have to pay taxes – it is his life at the end of the day and he’s free to do what he wants. What’s so obvious is the sheer envy that a lot of people show when commenting on the fact that he’s in a tax haven, and commenting on his private jet and so on. There are many more people that are richer than us, it’s just that they aren’t as well known as Lewis so in instances like this when this subject crops up, people like him will bear the brunt of it. But if he’s contributing significant amounts of money to charitable causes then good on him. I could go on to potential reasons for him not living in the UK but at the end of the day, that’s none of my business – I’m here for the racing.

            2. Daniel (@collettdumbletonhall)
              31st October 2013, 15:54

              Perhaps he could both Zahir?
              Perhaps he does care, but he certainly doesn’t see any link between his actions and what he says.

              Can I just say that I condone any tax avoidance. I criticise Lewis here because it is related to the topic at hand, I can’t exactly start rambling on about Donald Trump here can I exactly?
              I am not just against Lewis on this. JB should pay his taxes too along with the rest of them.

            3. @collettdumbletonhall I do know what you mean. I was just making a wider point with respect to many other rich people. As far as I’m aware, JB does live in the UK?
              Funnily enough, why isn’t anyone commenting on why other drivers aren’t speaking out against such issues? A lot of people just seem to jump onto the bandwagon with these ‘hot button topics’ which cause a large amount of fuss, like I said, it seems to mostly stem from peoples’ envy.

        4. He is being a hypocrite. He doesnt pay taxes to the society that raised him, but he tries to do charity. The taxes he’d pay would be used in health, education, etc.

          1. oh please. you’re just a jealous whiner who hates successful people, especially Hamilton. The value of the time he’s donated to charity just in the past 12mos alone is probably worth more than all of the “wealth” you’ve produced in the past decade.

      2. @collettdumbletonhall

        Fiscal policy is tricky, if you ask people to pay 15% of their income they certainly will take it more easily than if asked to pay 50% or so. Just look at what Hollande is trying to do in France? That’s ridiculous, maybe people would be OK with a smaller social state along with less taxes. The fact you don’t want to pay high taxes doesn’t make you insensitive to social causes.

        1. @jcost no but I guess the point being made is that at least if you are paying tax you are giving something back that can in part be used for social causes like health care, social services etc. If Hamilton is making those contributions direct ie by charitable donations he is not being hypocritical. If he isn’t then clearly his comments are a bit rich.

          1. Charity = Conscience-O-Matic with 90% “administrative expenses”.

        2. Daniel (@collettdumbletonhall)
          31st October 2013, 10:51

          Yeah it does make you insensitive to social causes because if he cared then he wouldn’t mind part of his wealth going into taxes. 50% is perfectly reasonable when you are making millions of pounds every year.
          Also, I think I may have read that Lewis has a house in the UK and may have had one in the US but prefers to be a resident of a country where he contributes nothing to society.
          I just don’t want to live in some Ayn Rand style hell hole.

          1. @collettdumbletonhall
            I’d rather have reasonable taxes and more charity, like what we see in the US where charity is widespread among the rich and giving back has more to do with putting your money into charity than handing it fiscal authorities which are more often than not run by irresponsible politicians.

            So none of the drivers living in Monaco cares about society, and their charity work is just a PR stunt.

            1. Daniel (@collettdumbletonhall)
              31st October 2013, 12:44

              But this is the thing, he pays no tax and how much charity does he actually do? Not a great deal.
              The rich barely pay any tax as it is (given the avoidance schemes) and so lowering taxes for them wouldn’t encourage them to give it away any more than right now.
              I think that for some of them it is a PR stunt but then others are just oblivious to their own hypocrisy, which I hope is the case with Lewis.
              If he paid taxes to the society that he benefited from growing up in then he could counter the wealth inequality which he moans about and maybe he could give money away to charity too?

            2. I agree with @zahir that living where one pays little or no taxes does not equate to not caring. To suggest so, to me, is ridiculous.

              @collettdumbletonhall Do you actually know how much charity work LH does? I don’t and I suspect you don’t either but I suspect we might be surprised.

            3. Robbie, that is true, he might not be constantly tweeting or posting about it on his website, but do we really know how much money he’s donated to charitable causes? We don’t. The funny thing is, if he donates a very large amount to charities people will just call it a PR stunt and if he keeps quiet about it then people will accuse him of “this and that”. Of course, there is the possibility that he isn’t donating much, but that brings me back to my point – we don’t know.

              At the end of the day, what goes around comes around.

            4. I think too, that most contributors to charity, especially the rich and famous ones, don’t stand on the highest mountain and announce their contributions in dollar figures. They may shout out the names of causes they support because it is important to get the word out there about their cause(s) but for them to speak of the dollar amounts of their own contributions would come across as tasteless and reeking of other motives. Many people donate anonymously for this reason.

              I hope and trust that the rich and famous will not stop giving generously because of a small handful of paranoid people who might accuse them of simply pulling off PR stunts. And come the end of the day, even money from a PR stunt is still money in the hands of someone or some entity that no doubt needs it more.

              I believe LH has a genuine soft spot to Save The Children which is why he is an ambassador, whereas if for example he contributed to MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Drivers) only after getting caught drinking and driving, that would be an example of something leaning more toward a PR stunt.

            5. @collettdumbletonhall iirc Hamilton is an ambassador for unicef so I guess that means he must do some charity work and his visit wasn’t just a one off.

              The article the Guardian is referencing is about income inequality in India, paying tax in the UK isn’t going to solve income inequality in India. Whilst I agree there is a whiff of hypocrisy in what Hamilton said, what do you want him to do? Donate his whole income to India, as if that would make a difference. The best that someone in Hamilton’s position can do is raise awareness due to his global following. I really don’t understand how he is being attacked for what he’s done or what he’s said.

            6. Like Robbie, I think that there are a lot of anonymous donations worldwide but at the same time, I’m not naive enough to dismiss the notion that charities could sometimes use their money more efficiently. Obviously it costs money for admin but I find it weird when charity directors get paid 6-figure salaries.

              @zahir I think Hamilton is someone that does seem to genuinely care about charity work, raising awareness is fairly easy for someone in his position. Not sure what you mean about the whiff of hypocrisy in his statement though. But like Robbie said, if he was talking about/for a charity to do with something related to a mistake he recently made (hypothetically speaking), then it definitely would be a fake, PR stunt.

      3. Daniel (@collettdumbletonhall)
        31st October 2013, 15:49

        Foreign aid comes from your taxes and goes to places like India.
        He can be a Unicef ambassador and pay taxes, the two aren’t mutually exclusive.
        No, I don’t want him to donate his whole income to India, stop being facetious. If he cares so much about wealth inequality (as he claimed before the Grand Prix) then the least he could do was pay his taxes, sharing the wealth. I am not saying that he must give away it all but he should pay some tax as I am sure you do. You pay more than he does. Of course donating his money won’t solve their problems but neither will anything by one person and how much does him raising awareness of an already well known problem actually do? Well done for doing that, but less hypocrisy please.

        I know he does charity work, but my question is why can’t he do that as well as paying taxes like the rest of us? Taxes shouldn’t be an opt-out thing.

        I think envy is a perfectly valid emotion for someone to have when there is so much inequality in the world. However, I am not envious of his private jet as I don’t want one. Of course, I would like that sort of money but I would pay my taxes in that situation. If he wants to give money away to charity then great, be my guest but the point is that charity work should not exempt you from paying taxes like the rest of us.
        Good on him for the Unicef work but practice what you preach.

        1. @collettdumbletonhall With all due respect I don’t think it makes much sense to tie in a country’s tax system with LH’s moral code. If you have issues with countries that don’t charge it’s residents with taxes that is one thing, and it is a far bigger thing than we are talking about here. I would suggest at a minimum that LH is a far better person by your standards for living in a tax free environment and giving charitably than for someone to live in a tax free environment and NOT give charitably.

          If you have issues with tax free countries I suggest you take it up with their Governments, not LH. I suggest you rally to either have all tax free environments abolished globally, or failing that, have all residents of such countries evacuate immediately.

          And don’t even get me started on how many billions of our hard-earned tax dollars here in Canada get squandered every minute of every day by Municipal, Provincial, and Federal Governments that treat our wallets like a bottomless pit of cash that they are entitled to, to do with whatever they, not we, wish, and then just go back to the trough when that runs out.

          1. Daniel (@collettdumbletonhall)
            31st October 2013, 19:25

            You’re completely missing the point. I am condemning Lewis for avoiding tax by living in Monaco, I am talking about the countries themselves as that is irrelevant.
            I think it does make sense to tie in his complaints about a lack of things being done to help the poor when he chooses to not directly contribute to society through taxation.

            Once again, I am not taking it up with tax free countries, I am taking it up with him for living in one to avoid tax. I don’t like countries being tax free but that is a completely different conversation that you are trying to start.

            Also, for a start you can’t just assume that he gives loads to charity because you do not know. Secondly, why can’t he pay taxes and contribute rather than avoiding making a contribution to the society that he grew up in and taking the moral high ground by giving money (possibly less than he’d pay in taxes) to charity.

            Yeah, it must be annoying having to contribute to society through taxes for public services mustn’t it? Why doesn’t it annoy you that you are paying more than him?

            1. @collettdumbletonhall First off I don’t get your issue with tax free countries. If they function just fine without levying a personal income tax what’s it to you? It’s not like the streets in Monaco are lined with homeless people who are going without. But I realize your bigger issue is that he is not in England paying taxes there. Or in fact does he have a residence there for which he pays property taxes? Does he buy things in the UK for which he pays a sales tax?

              What I don’t get is you boiling down LH’s morality to whether or not he pays taxes in England. Taxes are not the be all and end all in this issue. I have no doubt the UK is similar to North America in that wealthy people often find so many loopholes in the system that in fact they pay very little relative to you and I by percentage. In terms of actual dollars they are paying a lot even if the percentage of income is smaller. Personally I’m fine with that because countries need to carry the potential for people to become wealthy and not have to give up so much in taxes because these are often the people that run corporations that provide jobs that create the economy and the tax base to begin with. You want great minds leaving your country, then nail them and their companies with high taxes.

              So I suggest that LH is doing nothing wrong, and to castigate him for where he lives, like that should be dictated to him is wrong, and there’s a good chance that he is doing far more good with his money by giving it directly to charities than by giving it to the Government of England to squander.

              I think you are making big assumptions in an effort to castigate LH without all the facts. I don’t have all the facts either, but then I’m not running the guy into the ground for showing concern over the situation in India. He’s not breaking any laws…he’s free to keep as much of his earned money as he legally can, and for all you know that gives him more money in the bank to do charitable things with. For all the faith I have (read don’t have) in government, that’s good enough for me.

          2. A lot of the wealthy pay money into a charity or set up a charity in their name so that they don’t pay tax , yet another tax avoidance.

        2. @collettdumbletonhall I respect and understand your opinion. My point wasn’t that peoples’ envy should be ignored, it’s how they react as a consequence to it. It’s natural for one to envy someone who is earning more than them, especially if they’re struggling to make ends meet, for example. But making silly remarks about his possessions is somewhat childish. If someone has a lot of money, criticising them and justifying it because of inequality in the world isn’t fair to be honest. In principle, yes, but in reality – no. It’s like when children don’t finish their food and adults tell them that people are starving out there – the leftover food doesn’t go to them. But it is important to teach them the value of what they have and to realise how lucky they are. LH is aware of how lucky he is and okay, he’s not paying taxes – but he’s helping more people worldwide by his charitable contributions than the equivalent amount of money that would have otherwise been taken by tax.
          “Practice what you preach” doesn’t apply here, people are missing the point and equating charity to tax. They are two very different things.

          On a side note, how do we know that he does not also contribute to charities within the UK, donating to charities that help people who can’t afford as much food as they need, or no food at all? Funding scholarship programs for higher education, funding activities for young people, etc. Not saying he does for sure, but it does bring me back to a point that was made earlier – we don’t know what he does and doesn’t contribute towards.

          1. Daniel (@collettdumbletonhall)
            31st October 2013, 19:14

            It’s not a silly remark about his possessions. I am not criticising him for having money, that’s not the point. I made a remark about his plane in relation to someone suggesting that he invests it altruistically. He can buy a private jet if he wants, just pay your taxes.
            Why can’t he donate as well as paying taxes? That’s what I want to know. Why should he be exempt from taxation?
            No, practice what you preach applies to this because he complained about inequality in the world.

            1. You’re taking what he said about inequality out of context, he’s talking about basic amenities, education, etc. He’s not denying anybody that by moving to another country. If he wants to do that, then so be it. If he wants to lease/buy a jet to fit more into his schedule rather than depending on airlines then fair enough, that doesn’t make him selfish (considering he’s still helping charities).
              “…just pay your taxes” You’re talking as if he’s illegally not paying taxes. Growing up, his parents will have paid taxes – so it’s not the case of no taxes being paid during his residence in this country. If he chooses to move to another country, then so be it – he hasn’t done anything wrong, for the following reason from Robbie:

              If a bloke is not living in a country and therefore not using it’s resources and infrastructure, he’s not avoiding taxes. He doesn’t live there. If he is instead living somewhere where they don’t need to levy a personal income tax, then so be it. He’s free to do that. Nothing suggests said bloke is not free to give back to the community and the country where he grew up.

              Many people are envious and consequently judge people like LH because they aren’t earning anywhere near as much, still live in the UK and thus pay tax. It sounds like one of those “if I have to, then you have to as well” situations, to be honest. I don’t mean to cause offence, it’s just an observation. Yes, in an ideal world all the rich people would stay and pay taxes, and as a result more money would get injected into the Government. But people can do as they please in this regard, it’s their life at the end of the day, they shouldn’t be ‘jailed’ here by the request of others. If he moved to another country that had a similar tax percentage, would we be having this conversation? It sounds like a matter of principle over reality here.

          2. Daniel (@collettdumbletonhall)
            31st October 2013, 19:14

            That previous comment was to you, forgot to mention your name in it.

          3. Daniel (@collettdumbletonhall)
            31st October 2013, 19:18

            I don’t condone Button’s tax avoidance either. I am not annoyed at anyone being very rich, that doesn’t come into. Sure, I would like that sort of money but it doesn’t cloud my judgement. What annoys me is the tax avoidance, envy does not come into that.

            If an article was being written about Button’s tax avoidance I would say the exact same thing.

            1. Using the term ‘tax avoidance’ makes it sound like he is refusing to pay his share of taxes levied in a country he resides in that levies a personal income tax. ie. doing something illegal.

              If a bloke is not living in a country and therefore not using it’s resources and infrastructure, he’s not avoiding taxes. He doesn’t live there. If he is instead living somewhere where they don’t need to levy a personal income tax, then so be it. He’s free to do that. Nothing suggests said bloke is not free to give back to the community and the country where he grew up.

    5. They are kids and you need to be a grown up man here in Formula One.

      Says the man who’s been sulking for a couple of years that someone didn’t turn up to defend him after he glassed someone in a nightclub.

      1. Better get a nice cold capri-sun out Sutil, you just got BURNED

    6. On the Ben Evans tweet regarding team radio.

      Reason team radio wasn’t on F1 broadcast’s before 2000 was for 2 reasons.
      The first been that teams wouldn’t give access to team radio transmissions.
      The second been that each race was broadcast by a local broadcaster back then, Each using there own broadcast trucks & equipment & each operated pretty much exclusively in there native language.

      When we got the F1 digital ppv service up & running we wanted team radio but teams still didn’t want us to broadcast it. Eventually we worked out deals with teams to get access to there team radio in 2000 although we didn’t have access to everything & several teams encrypted there transmissions when they didn’t want us to hear them.
      We brought the team radio to the world feed at the 2004 Chinese Gp with the same conditions attatched, We ended live transmissions after the 2006 Bahrain Gp after complaints about Fisichella swearing. Since then its all been on a delay.

      With regards to Indycar, Its always been much easier for US Broadcasters to get access to team radios as none of its encrypted & in most cases everyone uses the same radio supplier making it far easier for the broadcasters to get access to it.

      Its a lot easier to do things in Indycar, Nascar & a lot of other US categories because the teams are far more open. They will allow you to try new in-car angles, tap there radios, get there telemetry data & so on. Its far harder to do a lot of that in F1 because teams are much more secretive & much more sensitive about in-car cameras affecting any aspect of the car be it aerodynamically or affecting cooling or distracting the driver in some way.
      It was always frustrating to see a cool idea get shot down because of the teams refusal to let us do it.

      1. We ended live transmissions after the 2006 Bahrain Gp after complaints about Fisichella swearing.

        Lol I was just watching it the other day, funny reaction from James Allen too:

    7. Really… France not having a GP is outrageous. There are around 10 countries that must have a GP, including France. That’s half the calendar. The other half can be used for expansion into new markets, but wisely. Two races in tiny middle-eastern monarchies with zero racing culture is not very wise, IMHO.

      1. France cannot afford to run the race.

        Next question..?

        1. A well-organized GP in a place like France should be profitable. Who can’t afford profit?

          1. There is no guarantee a French Grand Prix would be profitable. Germany, which has as much motorsport heritage, has a Grand Prix that is losing money, and needs its circuits to alternate. In fact, the Nurburgring is supposed to be almost bankrupt.

            1. Then there is something very wrong with the way GPs are organized, if even a place like Germany can’t make a buck on it.

      2. There are rumours that the reason why the French GP hasn’t gone ahead is not just down to financing, but also because it has also become caught up in domestic politics.

        The teams have long complained about poor transport links and a lack of supporting infrastructure around the Magny Cours circuit, so both they and FOM are much more interested in using the Paul Ricard circuit instead.
        However, there was a rumour that Hollande’s party want the race to take place at Magny Cours instead because they feel that they would win more votes if the French GP returns there instead of to Paul Ricard (although Hollande does not want to explicitly offer any government support for either event, there were promises that they would start investing heavily in infrastructure upgrades in that region if the French GP did return). With the government pushing for one option and the teams pushing for another, FOM has basically decided to abandon the proposal for now.

        1. Yes. I agree. For the French GP there is more going on then just funding, although that’s obviously an issue. Politics unfortunately can get involved with hosting a GP. It’s just a shame that it’s taken over 5 years and the balls barely rolling. For a country with such a strong racing history and pedigree,you would think that it would be a priority.

          Thank goodness the 24 hours of Le Mans isn’t going anywhere.

    8. Yay!
      Finally an F1 Racing Game where there’s the potential to actually STEER A WHEEL (granted, it’s a Wii Wheel, but close enough), rather than flick your thumb on a Joystick!
      I’m excited!

      *Cough* The whole Hamilton-DiResta fiasco is ridiculous. I wonder if the negative publicity that Paul’s getting as a result of this is further affecting his chance for a drive next year?

      1. F1 games on PS3 and Xbox 360 where compatible with force feedback wheels in 2010

        1. *Since 2010. Which I believe is all of them.

      1. They used to, Fiat has bought it back in 2010, didn’t you noticed that Mubadala logo was removed from the drivers cap and was replaced with Santander logo

    9. Oh sorry, I believe Adrian moved straight up from F3 too…

    10. Just out of curiosity. In most countries 18 is the age when u get a license. I wonder how well these kids would drive regular road cars which require a different skill set.

      1. The advantage of having older drivers is that you dont have that many emotional outbursts which we see these days. Something like Hamilton’s black guy comment. And Vettel’s cucumber comment. And many more…..

        1. @malleshmagdum That’s not necessarily true, we’ve seen plenty of outbursts from older drivers. Alonso, Raikkonen, Button, Webber, and more.

        2. @malleshmagdum Apparently the cucumber thing (which Vettel said in German) is just a slang term for driving around leasurly, maybe with a slight negative connotation. Not really a real insult.

          1. @mike-dee didn’t know that. But here in India it was taken offensively

    11. On a side note: Today I saw Rush. I liked it so much, but my wife got a real fan of Niki Lauda!!! That man is an example of determination. And it was great to hear Niki himself telling the story.

      1. … and I think she didn’t blink so much when James Hunt appeared :( Naah I’m okay. :P

        1. congrats, Hemsworth is a tentation for women…

      2. Ha, I saw it on Monday and my wife liked the filml. But unlike your wife, mine said that Niki Lauda didn’t come across very likeable…


    12. With regards to the COTD: Bernie does not care about ticket sales as that money does not go to him. If France wants a race, they will have to put the money in the pocket of the man making the calender.

      1. And that’s a bad thing. I think the same way Bernie and FIA think top teams like Ferrari, McLaren, Red Bull, Mercedes and Williams desere a “bigger say” than others, I think he should treat countries differently. If France can’t afford a 20 mil EUR fee, why not a reasonable price cut for the sake of their heritage?

        1. If I’m correct it was the French president Hollande who did not want to support another GP. Were it stil Sarkozy you could be quite sure one would be in the make right now. It’s all politics really.

          The oil countries have money in the same amount they have sand and they don’t know what to spend it on. Dubai is a wasteland really, except for Abu Dhabi.

    13. I don’t agree one bit with the premise of questioning Abu Dhabi’s human rights record and using that as a point in favor of France. Not sure if you guys are following the news, an article of ill-treatment of elders by Air France is making the rounds ( If this is how the national carrier of the country treats citizens of the world’s largest democracy, then there is no reason why France should be given the right to host a Grand Prix.

      1. Except Sumedh that it isn’t state controlled as much as you suggest, making it another company to treat some clients it sees as burdensome badly.

        I read in the COTD the combination of bad factors, where ‘no-racing history, fans, or involvement [and adding in the failure as an F1 racing track] is making the race pointless, even if you don’t look at ethics (which f1 largely indeed does not).

        Combining them makes France a lot better for fans. (Though as an investor Abu Dhabi is involved in a few teams, isn’t it?).

      2. I’ve experienced that kind of behaviour in all countries that I’ve been to. Every now and then, violations of human rights happen in every country of the world.

        The difference between the UAE and France is that the Emirates have legalized human rights violations. If you have been discriminated in France and have evidence for that, then you can go to court and fight for your rights. In the UAE, it’s not possible as the country itself is run by criminals.

        The UAE does not have democratically-elected institutions or political parties, restricts freedom of speech and freedom of the press and has not signed most international human-rights and labor-rights treaties. Sexual relations outside of a traditional, heterosexual marriage are a crime. The UAE are much worse than Russia in regards to human rights.

        I personally like the Yas Marina Circuit, it’s a very impressive place and it provided one of the best races last year. Honour to whom honour is due but we shouldn’t forget about the ugly side of the countries where F1 races are held or simplify matters by saying that “nobody’s perfect”.

      3. This is a ridiculous comparison. I read that airline rant the other day, and while it is not nice to be in such a situation, it happens every day that travellers have to overnight at the airport because of a misconnection. And indeed, if you are without a Schengen visa, you might need to stay airside if a transit visa is denied. I also can’t believe that Indians were particularly singled out for that – it is clear that on a flight from Paris to Delhi, virtually all passengers that need a Schengen visa will be Indian. Of course, Air France customer service (especially at the airport) is pretty bad, but this is pretty much irrespective of your nationality. Most importantly, Air France is privately owned, so he will not need to fly Air France anymore next time.

        Compare that to living in the UAE. Imagine you are a woman. Or worse, gay. Or probably even worse, an Indian construction worker. A lot worse being discriminated against by the government all of your life than having to spend a night at an airport.


        1. It is not as ridiculous as you might think.

          Air France has been discriminating against Indians for a while now. Here are a few links for your reference.

          Also, regarding the fact that Air France is a private enterprise, well the government of France is no different. They banned the Sikh students from wearing the turbans in the classroom. So much for being a democratic secular state.

          Not just this, many of my friends who have been in Europe have experienced the French to be far more bothered by Indians than any other Europeans.

          I know this is off-topic. But this is just to prove that citing the human rights record as a reason for cancellation of Abu Dhabi is also off-topic. Every country (whether democratic or not) does something or the other wrong. By that logic, F1 should probably just do all its rounds in Monaco.

          1. They are not discriminating against Indians. There is simply no other choice for an airline if transit visa are not issued by border control than to put them up airside. In any case, this only happens if there is no other seat available to go to India. I personally have seen stranded Indians on temporary beds in both Heathrow and in Frankfurt (I don’t travel via Paris).

            I bet that the same would be true for all other nationalities that don’t easily get transit visa. But you will not see many of those on a flight to India.

            I generally recommend friends not to travel via airports where going landside you would need a visa – even if you are not planning to leave the airport. For example, I would never travel via Moscow as a misconnect would be hugely painful if there is no other option until the next day.

            And to bring it on-topic again, even F1 drivers can have problems with their visas:


    14. My only issue with Kvyat getting the Toro Rosso seat is that I have no idea how to pronounce his surname properly. If they team think he is ready, he is ready. End of.

      1. Like the carbrand FIAT with a K in front of it: K-FIAT

        Would be more funny if he drove a Ferrari. Would’ve been ‘K-FIAT in the red FIAT’

        1. That’s the way I thought it was pronounced, thanks!

      2. Oops. First time my brain actually registers it’s not Kyvat but Kvyat!

      3. Not that hard. It is basically “Kveeutt”

        Here it from the man himself:

    15. @Skitty4lb without wanting to be that guy, theres 3 French drivers on the grid.

      1. I think Grosjean is Swiss, are you sure.

        1. He’s Swiss when he crashes.

        2. Lives in Switzerland drives under a French flag.

          Not that it really matters at all.

      2. Isn’t it 4 (Grosjean, Vergne, Pic and Bianchi)?

        RoGro is Franco-Swiss but he has a French racing license so he is French for FIA purposes. Nico Rosberg is in a similar boat, he is a dual German and Finnish national with a German racing license.

        1. Yes @geemac. Personally I think it’s ridiculous, a license should not determine your “nationality”. E.g., there’s a driver named Luis Sá Silva driving in GP3 (Carlin) who was born in Angola, but he has a license issued by Macau so the boy is from Macau… nonsense. It’s like a Brazilian graduate from MIT becoming an American Engineer just because MIT is in the US…

          1. Well Grosjean IS French, so are Vergne, Pic (who is also half Monegasc ?) and Bianchi (half italian). It just so happens he also holds the swiss nationality. It’s often the case that people have dual nationality in Europe. I for one hold two. It’s just a matter of knowing which license you choose and which anthem should be sang should you win really…

            1. Aren’t one of Grosjean’s parents Swiss? And he was born there, I think that’s why there is confusion.

          2. Personally the whole nationality is irrelevant anyway, thought it for a while now.

          3. In F1 it’s your passport rather than your racing licence that determines your nationality. Hence why Bertrand Gachot began his career as a Belgian and ended it as a Frenchman.

            1. No, not at all, it is the opposite.

              Gachot was never Belgian, he just held a Belgian licence in the first few years. Later he raced under a French licence (which was also his nationality).

              Another example is Jochen Rindt who was German but he raced under an Austrian licence.


            2. Yes FIA rules stipulate it is a passport nationality.

      3. Ah yes. I forgot Jean-Eric Vergne. Thanks that guy.

    16. Looks like Codemaster just redesigned “Mario Kart”…

      1. …again.

    17. Sutil was 23 when he entered F1, as somebody who is 25 I feel that I can safely say there isn’t much difference between being an 18/19 year old or a 23 year old in regards to being more or less of a “man” or even maturity. Heck based atleast on my circle of friends I’d lump ages 16-30 into one category when it comes to maturity and agefullness (which is a word I just made up haha).

      1. I disagree. I think there is usually a big difference in maturity and experience going from 16 to 30 years of age. Recent studies suggest that our brains continue developing until about the age of 25, before which some youth have not developed fully the appreciation of consequences for their actions. This has been talked about even just in recent days as yet another teenager near where I live died while riding on the hood and falling off of his buddies car at speed, for the thrill of it, and the You Tube ‘fame’.

    18. There is one key point in the Comment of the Day that I completely disagree with. It’s a favourite argument in some quarters, and it bothers me every time that it is raised: the idea that some countries are more deserving of a Grand Prix than others because if their “heritage”. It is, to my mind, colonialism, which I find extremely ironic (and will explain in due course).

      The argument is that countries like France deserve a race because of their contribution to world motorsport over the past sixty years, whereas other countries, like the United Arab Emirates, are less deserving of a race, because they have not made that same contribution. But sixty years ago, France did not have that “racing heritage” in Formula 1 because there was no World Championship. And yet, it was included in the calendar. What’s to say that, in sixty years, the UAE will not have made a similar contribution? But people would happily take away their race because they haven’t made that contribution, and in the process, take away their best chance to develop interest in local motorsport. So when you break it down to it’s simplest form, France is more deserving of a race because it was in Western Europe where motorsport developed. The UAE was no, and so does not deserve a race or the chance to develop it’s own motorsport scene. That is colonialism.

      I find it ironic that people find it distasteful for a race to take place in the UAE because of human rights abuses. Nothing the Emiratis have done rivals what the European colonial powers managed to do. While colonialism is dead, the effects are still being felt. Everybody loves the Belgian Grand Prix, but the Belgians lit the fuse on the powder keg that is the Democratic Republic of the Congo. They deliberately installed minority groups in positions of power and sowed discord among the local population so that they would fight amongst one another and could never band together to form a resistance against the Belgians, leaving the Belgians free to mine whatever they liked from the land for as long as they liked. And while they left Africa fifty years ago, the Congo is still tearing itself apart because of what the Belgians did. When UN Secretary-General Dag Hammarskjold came close to cleaning up the problem in the 1960s, the Europeans opposed it because the idea had cone from the Soviets. Never mind that it could have allowed the Congo to start functioning like a country; the West vehemently opposed it because they would afraid it would cut off their access to previous resources and allow the Soviets to gain influence.

      So if human rights records are going to be the deciding factor in who gets a race, the UAE’s questionable labour practices are a lesser evil than the way Belgium deliberately destroyed half a continent for profit.

      1. Agreed, and one could extend this argument and ask what China has contributed to Motorsport historically, to go along with their human rights record.

      2. Thank you!

        The ‘deserving of a race’ argument has absolutely no basis in the modern world. No one starts off with a ‘history’. It has to be built. If countries like United Arab Emirates are willing to put in the money till the time a history of F1 develops there, who are the Europeans to stop that?

      3. I would agree with you if Belgium still had those policies. But they no longer do, so it doesn’t make sense to use this as a criterion. Otherwise there would be no places where to have a GP anymore.

        Spain? Think about the Aztecs and Inkas.
        US? Look at what they did to the Inuit and Indians. Although I guess you can also blame the British, so no British GP either.
        Germany? Holocaust.
        Australia? Treatment of Aborigines.
        etc etc

        As long as you go back far enough, every country will not behaved in a way that meets current human right standards. So if you want human rights to play a role, the only sensible way is to look at current policies.


        1. @mike-dee – That’s the point I’m trying to make: if we decide who gets a race based on their human rights record, there wouldn’t be any races because everyone has done something wrong at some point. Belgium might not have those policies any more, but that doesn’t change the way that the effects of those policies are still being felt today.

      4. @prisoner-monkeys

        The part about racing heritage was perfectly said. I agree completely.

        The part about human rights was poorly thought. Take a couple of minutes to think about it more carefully.

        1. @silence – Oh, I’ve thought about it long and hard ever since people called for the Bahrain Grand Prix to be cancelled because of their human rights record. As soon as you start judging one race based on its human rights, you have to judge all of them. If the UAE does not deserve a race because of its labour practices and Bahrain does not deserve a race because of the way it handled the uprising, then does China deserve a race because of it’s ongoing persecution of Falun Gong? Does Russia deserve a race because of its policies about LGBT rights? Does America deserve a race because of its mass surveillance programs?

          You can claim that my reasoning is poorly thought out, but you’re evidently uncomfortable with the idea that everyone will be judged. If one race gets judged based on the host country’s human rights record, then all races have to be judged. Anything else is hypocritical – and *that* is what you should be uncomfortable about.

        2. So if the UAE abandons all that, right now, at this moment. Will you just forgive them? Ask politicians to let that go? Defend them?

      5. I acknowledge that bring up the politics and human rights of a specific country is a very debatable and controversial topic. Especially on a website that is read and viewed by people from many different nationality’s and backgrounds. I also acknowledge that every country in history has human rights violations as some point, if you go back that far. Even western country’s it still happens. I believe that most sensible thing is to view what the governments of the countries in question support currently with regards to human rights. Thank you for you dissertation on country’s human rights history.

      1. @geemac No because those stories were published after the round-up was!

          1. Ah ha! I knew there was a reason!

    19. pit radio was included in broadcasts in 1995, almost 15 years before F1

      My memories might be wrong, but weren’t the first pit radios broadcasted around 2004 in F1?

      1. Jack (@jackisthestig)
        31st October 2013, 9:58

        Yeah, the Chinese GP if I remember correctly.

    20. I think that young age or relatively moderate previous racing experience isn’t reason enough to say that a driver is not ready for F1. Vettel, Raikkonen, Alonso and Button were not much older or much more experienced than Sirotkin and Kvyat when they started racing in F1. But every driver is different so it’s very possible that one teenager can easily skip GP2 and FR3.5, while the other needs more time to come of age. And it’s also true that the rookies of today don’t have the privilege of wide testing opportunities that Vettel and Raikkonen were able to enjoy.

      What I’m concerned about is that no one seems to be ready to take responsibility for promoting a young driver to F1 too early. It’s obvious that a driver will almost never turn down an offer to race in F1 as he doesn’t know if he’ll ever get that chance again. But if a driver fails, then it is assumed that it’s because of his own fault, that he simply isn’t good enough. But perhaps he just wasn’t quite ready for the big stage yet and needed one or two more years to mature. Unfortunately I don’t think that Red Bull or Sirotkin’s sponsors care about that and they obviously won’t feel anyhow responsible if their drivers don’t meet the expectations.

    21. Jack (@jackisthestig)
      31st October 2013, 9:59

      I didn’t know Burn was alcoholic.

    22. I agree with Sutil. F1 will lose all credibility if it allows itself to become a creche for the spoilt offspring of billionaires.

    23. Following Sutil’s behaviour in that nightclub, I can’t help but think he’s hardly the person to be talking about being ‘grown up’…

    24. Yeah Adrian – you’re exactly the guy who should teach us what a man is!

    25. Force India driver Adrian Sutil has warned that letting teenagers loose in Formula One with minimal experience could be dangerous for other drivers on track.

      Yes, and letting Adrian Sutil drink bottled beer is dangerous for everyone in the vicinity of Adrian Sutil!

    26. Yes Sutil, you are so grown up with your attacking someone in a bar with broken glass.

      And then sulking when your friend was so disappointed he didn’t want to testify on your behalf.

      Yes you are so grown up.

    27. I don’t think Adrian Sutil is in a position to determine who is and isn’t ready for F1. This is the guy who lost control of his car, in the dry, on the racing line in Korea. Are those the actions of a “grown up man?”

      Just because you’re old enough to drink champagne doesn’t necessarily mean you should be let loose with a glass of it, does it Adrian?

    28. Sauber choose Sirotkin. In the past it was Kimi and Seb. Also two very young drivers.
      Why dont we trust Sauber?

    29. “I think it’s far too early [for them]. They are kids and you need to be a grown up man here in Formula One.”

      At least he doesn’t go around glassing people like a “grown up man”. Good riddance.

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