Hamilton “very impressed” by Magnussen

F1 Fanatic Round-up

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In the round-up: Lewis Hamilton, the last F1 driver to finish on the podium at his debut before Kevin Magnussen, praises his McLaren successor’s impressive performance in Melbourne.


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Lewis Hamilton praises Kevin Magnussen for Australia podium finish as he welcomes ‘new wave’ of drivers (The Mirror)

“Kevin did a fantastic job. I’m very impressed with his job. Well done to him.”

Mercedes insists dominance overstated (Autosport)

Toto Wolff: “I would say we have a little bit of a margin performance-wise, but it is not a lot.”

F1’s new sound (Sky)

“From trackside in a braking area you’d hear the whistle and whine of turbo and cam gears, the rumble of resistance as torque was taken from the rear axle and fed to the battery, you’d hear part-throttle hesitancy and then a beautifully cultured V6 howl.”

Sound and fury (Darren Heath Photographer)

“FIA President Jean Todt’s desire to have engine/power plant consistency across all premier racing disciplines is entirely to be applauded. The lobbying against his plans by F1’s commercial rights holder and ignorant non-specialist journalists who do down the sport at every opportunity is both disappointing and short-sighted in the extreme.”


Comment of the day

Another perspective on whether having more unreliability is good for F1:

People were hyping that the unreliability would bring thrills… Well, it didn’t. We lost what could have been a very battle between Rorsberg and Hamilton. We missed Vettel coming from the back like Button. We got stuck with a slow Alonso and a slow Raikkonen. Yay! Unreliability!

I have nothing against the new rules (although I admit I kinda do miss the sound of the V8), but I hope unreliability will not make us miss more possible great performances.


Here’s Dean Stoneman driving for Williams at the Young Drivers’ Test in Abu Dhabi in 2010 as his prize for winning that year’s Formula Two championship. Shortly afterwards Stoneman was diagnosed a serious form of testicular cancer. He made a recovery and has returned to racing, and yesterday Marussia confirmed he will drive for their GP3 team this year.

From the forum

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to Girts!

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 42nd birthday to Pedro Lamy.

The struggling Lotus team was Lamy’s first F1 home, where he ended the 1993 season and spent the first races of 1994. However while testing the team’s revised car at Silverstone he vaulted a fence and landed in a pedestrian tunnel, which was fortunately unoccupied at the time.

His injuries ruled him out of the rest of the season, but he returned with Minardi for the second half of 1995 and most of the following season. His only point came at the final round of 1995 in Adelaide, when the retirement of many runners helped him take sixth.

Image © McLaren/LAT, Williams/LAT

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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56 comments on “Hamilton “very impressed” by Magnussen”

  1. i think there’s not many people who AREN’T impressed with magnussen, if you ask me!

    1. And yet how different it would’ve been had he crashed at the start, it almost happened but he didn’t and that shows how good he is.

    2. OmarR-Pepper (@)
      20th March 2014, 1:07

      @rigi are you implying that Hamilton is just stating the obvious? Sorry if I’m misinterpriting you, but it looks like this old thing, more ore less this: “Look at what Hamilton said, it’s bad, it’s always bad!”

      1. Chris (@tophercheese21)
        20th March 2014, 1:09

        I think you’re misinterpreting it. Lol.

      2. @omarr-pepper no, i’m not. i’m saying hamilton is correct and a lot of people currently think the same way. not sure how this can be misinterpreted, but oh well.

    3. I’m not, I wasn’t expecting any less than matching Button and having a trouble free weekend, the same goes for kvyatt young confidence is key in F1.

    4. I’m not impressive, per say. I expected it, mclaren said he was faster than Perez.

      1. impressed*

      2. It’s ‘per se’.

  2. Very reminiscent of Hamilton in 2007. I predicted him to be on the podium before the race last Sunday. McLaren seemed to have a good package and that combined with a Formula Renault 3.5 champion was bound to yield a good result. He seems like a top guy. Incredibly talented and really down-to-earth. Here’s hoping that McLaren can catch up to Mercedes sooner rather than later.

    1. I hope magussen gets better as he matures. to me Hamilton drove his best in 07 and 08… when tyre wear was nearly irrelevant.

  3. Very impressed with KMag, but let’s not forget that had a couple chance events gone different ways he would not have been on the podium. Which speaks even more impressively. He put himself in a place to make the most of his chances. Hopefully his form so not a one off, and we can see more if him mixing it up with the big boys.

    Fingers crossed that Ferrari can get in top of their performance issues. A 4-team fight at the front will be epic!

    1. Hey, it’s his first race and first season. If he’d finished anywhere in the points or gotten a podium any time this season, whatever the lucky breaks involved, we’d have reason to be impressed.

  4. I’m not saying that if F1 turned into a crap-shoot of who’d last long enough to reach the flag that the sport would be improved – but the bulletproof reliability of the past few seasons was never the norm in F1. To my mind it shouldn’t be.

    Thinking back to the 90’s, F1 cars breaking down with engines blowing and brakes failing, was a sign of engineering being on the limit. You could tell that F1 was at the cutting-edge of automotive technology and that the teams were extracting everything they could from their machines. The cars were going flat out and you could tell from how many gave up during the race. In more recent seasons, with engine freezes, quotas on parts and a lot of the technology under the bodywork being extremely regulated, this went away and the race for performance became concentrated on aerodynamics. I’m happy to see an element of unreliability return to F1 (along with all the drama that comes with it) if it shows that the teams have to return to focusing on how to improve the mechanics of their cars, and not just the bodywork that sits on them. They’re still not allowed to truly explore the performance limits of their cars for many reasons – fuel, tyres, 5 engines a season ect. – but at least it’s something.

    1. @colossal-squid
      Being a MSc myself working with development and running of technical equipment (Minehunting at sea) it is clear that the unreliability of F1 in the 1990s wasn’t at all a sign of engineering being on the limit. The teams – and Ferrari in particular – had just not made the analysis of how much the lack of quality control and verification before implementation did actually cost them in terms of DNF’s and lost points. It was an unprofessional approach to the subject of controlling the quality of the equipment supplied to the part of the teams running the race cars during race weekends.
      What changed it, at least by Ferrari, was the hiring of Ross Brawn, who turned their attention to quality control of every possible technical aspect. This founded the basis for the later Schumacher dominance era. I couldn’t find the data showing Ferraris improvement in terms of DNF’s, but I found this quote from an interview with Pat Fry:
      Quote from http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/motorsport/formulaone/ferrari/8885694/Multi-tasking-Pat-Fry-relishing-role-as-Ferraris-technical-director-F1s-poisoned-chalice.html
      “Ross [was] obviously very organised and methodical. If you plot out the whole of the 1990s Ferrari’s reliability it was something like 25 per cent. Then Ross arrived when it stepped up to 90 per cent within six months, which was quite telling in terms of putting in structural changes to ensure that.”
      That said the present day added F1 drive train complexity will lead to a slightly lower reliability due to the numbers: Any system has a given MTBF (Mean Time Between Failures) and when You string more interdependent subsystems together the MTBF decreases. This means that if this season has a Mercedes team 1 sec ahead of everyone else, the WDC will be decided primarily by the number of DNF’s due to technical glitches from either Rosberg or Hamiltons side of the garage.
      Rosbergs pitcoms where he asks if there is anything he can do to improve reliability clearly shows that Rosberg is fully aware of this fact.

      1. Spot on, mate. My opinion is that major problem stems from lack of testing due to FIA testing limitations. The biggest technical overhaul of F1 in decades was left to 12 days of testing. Teams were discovering glitches and failures in material all the time. There is no doubt that the time given to test technology of this complexity was issuficient and hence reduction of MTBF was a mission impossible. FIA is to blame, if you ask me.

        1. As far as I am aware, any pre-season testing ‘limitation’ did not come from the FIA but from the teams themselves. I think several teams (notably Renault powered) grossly underestimated the complexities of the new formula. The daisy chaining together of several sub-systems is a software engineers nightmare on it’s own, let alone the mechanical implications.

        2. As @baron mentions, Boomerang, it was not the FIA but the teams that came up with restricting testing. The FIA put it in the rules after the teams had agreed to do that between themselves to save cost.

          And in my opinion, its far better to get to see the teams having to find their way with the cars, test new bits, optimize the cars during a weekend where the fans are there to see it rather than testing in the desert on their own. If not for the testing ban, its likely we would be back to teams sitting out most of FP1 except the odd installation lap, sit out FP3 because they would worry about breaking anything before qualifying and then just coast most of the race because they already found that they can be 1,7 seconds (or something like that) faster over the race distance when they put in even less than 100 kg. Oh, and off course we would still have a Vettel (or Rosberg, or Hamilton, doesn’t really matter who it is) driving away at the start, and after the SC, and win on a trot.

      2. Great insight! ^

      3. @palle Thank you, that was a fantastic and informative comment!

        1. @colossal-squid: Thank You – nicest comment I have ever received here;-)
          @boomeranga: Thank You, but I’m not sure if I want more testing back, because it will increase the gap between the resourceful teams and the less gifted faster. Now we will have a season where some of the well-prepared and lucky teams will run away in the distance and later we will see the exciting catch up by those not so well-prepared, but resourceful teams who are able to cover the gap over the season. It will be fantastic to witness:-)

  5. “From trackside in a braking area you’d hear the whistle and whine of turbo and cam gears, the rumble of resistance as torque was taken from the rear axle and fed to the battery, you’d hear part-throttle hesitancy and then a beautifully cultured V6 howl.”

    All true, as long as the person sitting next to you in the stands wasn’t explaining F1 to their uneducated friend the entire race..

    You can actually have a conversation over the top of these cars, as well as hearing the trackside commentary, which is convenient more than anything.

    I don’t mind the sound of the cars, but I’d like them to just be a bit louder (I was seated at Turn 1).
    The loudest car in the field was the Toro Rosso, not sure why, but it wasn’t much louder than a Carrera Cup Porsche or a V8 Supercar.

    The amazing part about the sound though is that you can hear which car was coming.
    I could tell it was a Ferrari-powered car approaching because their downshifts were practically non-existent, or thats it was a Renault engine burping and coughing its way through the acceleration zone.
    The Mercs sound like the pinnacle of German efficiency, slightly more whine but a smoother delivery.

    It will take some time to get used to but soon enough we’ll stop talking about.

    1. I wonder what the Honda engine will sound… Mind by that stage they’ll probably all sound more similar than at present.

      1. *will sound like…

    2. I was walking around on Friday practice and in the corners its like that but in the middle of the straights you don’t really hear them approaching until they are around 300m away. Last year you could pick where a car was on track from opposite ends of the circuit.

  6. I don´t think that Magnussen will be like Hamilton all over again…

    1. OmarR-Pepper (@)
      20th March 2014, 1:09

      @cocaine-mackeine me neither, this Mag kid looks like 2WDC material :P :P :P

      1. So is more Alonso, 2WDC and that’s it?


  7. I think we’re all impressed by Kev. However, he was very fortunate no one turned out to be on his left during the start, wouldn’t have had much of a race if that were the case.

    But, I don’t like nitpicking and what ifs/buts aren’t gonna do much good here so, it was a great first performance in F1. It’s definitely gonna remembered for quite a while.

    1. Indeed, if he had hit someone at the start we would have all been laughing at what an inept rookie McLaren had landed themselves with. Just goes to show that judging on the basis of a single race can be a bad idea.

  8. You still have the five: Vettel, myself, Alonso and Kimi.

    Uuuuuuum… I think you’ve listed four drivers there Hamilton. Maybe you meant to include Button as well? Or maybe not.

    As for the COTD I agree completely. While Hamilton and Vettel’s retirement surely impacted the podium outcome (which seemed to be one of the most popular in recent memory), it did make for a race that had less action than the race we might’ve had with the two Merc’s fighting for the lead, and Vettel possibly coming through to fight his teammate for the final podium spot. While I’d imagine there will still be some reliability issues for some time, I think we’ll probably all be surprised at how quickly most teams get on top of their woes just as we were in Melbourne where we were repeatedly told that if you just finished the race you may well score points.

    1. @us_peter It sounds awful, but I genuinely forget sometimes that Button is a world champion.

      A bit like Villeneuve in the BAR days…

  9. As if Merc would have allowed a Ham, Ros battle. That team was talking of team orders before the first race even happened.

    1. GB (@bgp001ruled)
      20th March 2014, 3:51

      exactly my thoughts when reading that comment!

    2. The team has said explicitly that the drivers will be allowed to race as long as they don’t do anything silly. Whether or not that’s a lie we’ll find out in the coming races, but for the moment I’ll take it at face value.

    3. Well they did say they were free to race as well. So we probably would have had a race up to a point and then they would have been told to hold station.

    4. Rubbish. I don’t know what the BBC coverage was like but on Sky, Toto was asked point blank and he said they were allowed to race. Kravitz asked if the fragility of the cars meant that for reliability reasons they would be asked to hold position and again he reiterated no, because he believed both are good enough not to crash into each other at any cost! We really were robbed of a great season opener although I suspect Hamilton would have held Nico at arms length the whole race, he really had the measure of him in qualifying despite an entire practice session less to setup.

    5. imagine if rosberg wins again next race and Hamilton doesn’t score – mercs plan will be up in a heap to support Hamilton – they might be forced to support rosberg – their much lower priced driver, being 50 points ahead, and with redbull sure to steam up from behind as the year goes on.

  10. It’s great that Dean is getting a chance to show his abilities, but at the same time, I’m a bit sad that Richie Stanaway never got a chance…after that horror crash at Spa, he hasn’t raced a single seater…it’s real sad..

    1. Indeed, before that he had looked very fast in every single seater he stepped into.. and while recovering, he won the iRacing Pro series online! His dominance was telling.

      1. @fastiesty Is he continuing in the Porsche Supercup this year with DAMS?

  11. Yeah, aagreed, winning by 25 seconds doesnt make you dominant. By lapping the field twice, maybe.

    1. But what if they were able to lap the field once or twice, but elected not to due to common sense?

  12. WilliamB (@william-brierty)
    20th March 2014, 8:23

    I emphatically doff the proverbial hat to the incredible Dean Stoneman, a man not only of phenomenal talent, but also of utterly inspiring resilience. For him to go from relative anonymity of some strong performances in Porsche Carrera Cup GB last year to the worldwide motorsport acclaim that found him on the second step of the podium in the GP3 Abu Dhabi Finale was easily one of the best stories in motorsport last year. The man quite clearly has a deep set quality, and have absolutely no doubt that he will be a title contender in GP3 next year…

    1. Lucas Wilson (@full-throttle-f1)
      20th March 2014, 9:21

      So true! This guy was supposed to have been a F1 driver, if it hadn’t have been for that horrible case of cancer he got. It was fun watching him in the Porsche last year though.

    2. Lucas Wilson (@full-throttle-f1)
      20th March 2014, 9:21

      So true! This guy was supposed to have been a F1 driver, if it hadn’t have been for that horrible case of cancer he got. It was fun watching him in the Porsche last year though.

    3. Exciting battle to come with Lynn and Kirchhofer in GP3!

  13. Thanks @keithcollantine for my first COTD! :-)

    About the topic, I think most of us were impressed by Magnussen, it was a great, flawless and consistent drive on Sunday, and an excellent qualy lap on Saturday. It was a great weekend for McLaren, which makes me happy.

    Shame that Whitmarsh isn’t there to see the results! After all, this is mostly the result of the work done under him.

    1. On Sky yesterday someone claimed that Whitmarsh actually was the one of the decision makers at McLaren, who were most in favour of keeping Perez. So according to that other people in McLaren can take pride in giving the chance to Magnussen. And it is a fantastic feat if it turns out that McLaren has found a replacement for Hamilton here in the dawn of a new F1 era. Fingers crossed that Magnussen can keep it up and that McLaren can supply him and Button with front row capable cars.

  14. I’m split about the noise, because I think they sound great with the lowered frequency and I like to be able to hear all the other sounds, i.e. wheelspin better. But on the other hand I fear to be disappointed come Spa, not getting the raise of the hairs on the back of the neck, when they start up the F1 engines in the pit.

  15. Happy birthday @girts!

    1. @KeithCollantine @BasCB Thank you guys :) I’m really lucky to have found such good friends from all over the world here!

      1. @girts happy birthday bro have a goodun mate

        1. @frankjaeger Thanks, mate! I indeed had a good day yesterday :)

  16. @KeithCollantine
    I think you should share this video on the site, indycar onboard engine sound vs f1 onboard engine sound

  17. This is a nice statement.

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