Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Circuit de Catalunya, 2014

Button “would be amazed” if anyone beats Mercedes

F1 Fanatic Round-up

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Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Circuit de Catalunya, 2014In the round-up: Jenson Button voices doubt over whether anyone besides Mercedes will win a race this year.


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

Nico Rosberg won’t be hit by Lewis Hamilton mind games, claims Jenson Button (Daily Mail)

“I would be amazed if another car wins a race this year.”

Lack of F1 winners due to spending war – Wolff (Autosport

“It’s clear we are going to see a gap between the smaller and larger teams widening, and that is not what we want. And this is probably the reason.”

‘Renault started too late’ (Sky)

Christian Horner: “As you can see we’ve got a very good chassis, I just think that they started too late. It’s as simple as that.”

Moving On Up (Lotus)

Technical director Nick Chester: “There’s acoustic work going on with the FIA at the moment, looking at the shape of the megaphone exhaust because depending on how you shape it you can affect different frequencies. So you can bias it towards the frequencies that you want to pick up. Clearly there is still more work to do. Trying to change the sound using anything other than a new tailpipe would be a major challenge.”


Comment of the day

Jay’s on form – this is his second Comment of the Day this week:

On F1 and the cost cap, I really don’t see how it can work. Unless you create a franchise like set-up like American sports, there is no way. The debate has raged on in football for years. Michel Platini’s Financial Fair Play will curtail some of the nouveau riche, but it doesn’t necessarily stop the likes of Man City and Paris Saint-German from operating at a loss.

Bernie is a being his usual cheeky self, asking teams to “spend less”. Sure Bernie, I hear Vijay Mallya has got his abacus out. You get the feeling that F1 needs to save itself from itself. Calls to spread the revenue out more evenly is probably a good start, but its just going to be a temporary fix isn’t it? The more money teams have, the more they will spend it, and then in a few years, we’re back to where you started.

This issue with haves versus have-nots will continue to rage until everybody agrees that the sport needs a massive shake-up in its fundamentals.

From the forum

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to Ponzonha and Tenerifeman!

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

Here’s one for you fans of obscure F1 drivers with unusual names.

Finland has a remarkably successful record in grand prix racing given that only nine drivers from the country have attempted to start F1 races. The only one of those who never managed to get on the grid was Mikko Kozarowitzky, who turns 66 today.

He entered the Swedish and British Grands Prix in 1977, driving a March 761, but didn’t make the grid on either occasion.

Image © McLaren/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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  • 57 comments on “Button “would be amazed” if anyone beats Mercedes”

    1. JB has done well to deflect the attention away from the languishing McLaren. Well done sir.

      1. Button playing mind games against ex-team mate by saying Lewis playing mind games against Lewis’s team mate while doing mind games to Perez by saying he knew if his team mate gonna playing mind game.

        1. Actually I think he’s playing mind games against his ex-team mate’s current team mate.

          And anyhow, it’s all moot: Hamilton doesn’t need mind games, the psychological pressure is achieved simply by being faster.

      2. This summer ( In movie trailer deep voice )…..be prepared to be Amazed…. XD .

        JB is clever at handling the mind games section . He is a gentleman but can be wily when required . But yeah , he is sad not to be able to compete at the top .

        1. I think Mercedes would be amazed if anyone beat Mercedes this year.

    2. F1Fanatic user npf1 ‘would be amazed’ if F1 drivers, team bosses and pundits stop talking about how unbeatable Mercedes is before they actually not win a race. More at 11.

      1. the best state i think like this, just win the race to unbeatable Mercedes

    3. Merc engineering
      Dominates Formula 1
      in twenty-fourteen

      There. If this inspirational Haiku poem doesn’t get comment of the day, I’ll eat my hat. My hat is made of ice-cream. Its more of a sombrero. Don’t worry my metabolism can handle it.

      1. he..he.he..that is a no lose situation you have set up for yourself!

        1. Well done – here is my own Haiku:

          Merc have run away
          But who will win the title:
          Lewis or Nico?

      2. Ice cream sombrero?
        Not really a punishment
        Nice try, however.

      3. Haiku’s are silly.
        They do not make any sense.

      4. Bull hooves scratch the dirt
        in their pens beneath high cliffs
        Awaiting the rain

    4. Omar R (@omarr-pepper)
      17th May 2014, 0:14

      A chasm starts to open in Horner’s armor. Bye to the days he said “We go up together and we go down together”. Now it’s “We (RB) did it well but THEY (Renault supplier) messed the engine”, “ask THEM that question”. This season will not be Red Bull’s at any point, the gap is so big to close, there are no flaws in the Mercedes package (as when Brawn was banned to use their double diffuser, then Red Bull could catch up), so this year is imho totally out of question. Let’s see if all the teams switch to investigate what else to do for the next season.

      1. I have to agree with you about how Horner is going down the wrong alley when he starts loading (although, they started it immediately after the first day of testing, or rather not being able to test much) @omarr-pepper.
        On the other hand, this week Renault themselves have already admitted that they “underestimated the task and overestimated our ability to deal with it”, so its not as if RBR is stating anything but the obvious

      2. @omarr-pepper Yes and no. Horner has always publicly criticized Renault, ever since they made the poor decision of switching engines to the sister team, which would coincidently beat them the following year. In the end Renault and RBR signed a sponsorship deal (Infiniti) and the critics were muted.

      3. @omarr-pepper. I agree, but we can’t really blame him. Renault is the only reason why Redbull currently can’t beat Mercedes. They should get their act together. But however much Renault tries, Horner knows it won’t happen before the start of next season.

        1. pxcmerc (@)
          21st May 2014, 7:29

          I doubt Red Bull would have a chance even if they had a customer Merc motor in their car, Williams and Mercedes look to be the only ones capable of getting the most out of the power unit. ToTo Power.

          McLaren look like they have a B spec power unit in their cars, probably because they are jumping to Honda next year. I believe Merc’s advantage is both in their efficiency and power deliver/software, something Merc do not wan’t Honda to understand.

    5. So what is there for the FIA to ban on Mercedes. Works team this year ?
      The split turbo ?

    6. I think I figured out where Mercedes got that exhaust trumpet from. It looks like they simply bolted on Hamilton’s Spanish GP trophy!

      1. LOL … Nice one … I can imagine how that could work as a trumphet

        1. I think it is actually the newest iteration of the dreaded Exhaust Blown Diffuser. Mercedes mistakenly thought the Strategy Group meant they want to hear more noise from conspiracy theorists.

      2. i guess mercedes really tried hard for it NOT to work:so indeed they bolted LH trophy on it

    7. The eternal issue of the cost cap. The problem with it is, the techinical reglation simply dont allow for it, the technology demands a high turnover. The sad thing is, F1 should be sustainable, the sports turnover itself should ensure the teams get a healthy income. After all, the standard contract to host a race assumes a rate of inflation of 10%, and Im sure Bernie negotiates similar rates for the TV rights. The teams should be drowning in cash!

      Ignoring the fact that this is overwhemingly the result of CVC’s overleveraged takeover of F1, perhaps the constructors championship prize money distribution should be more based on the Premier league model where 50% is doled out equally, 25% is based on final standings and the other 25% is based on televised games. (http://www.forbes.com/sites/bobbymcmahon/2014/05/10/dividing-the-tv-money-pie-or-how-some-soccer-leagues-are-more-equal-than-others/)

      Obviously you cant perform a direct transplant of the model, for these reasons:

      1. There are 20 teams, year in and year out. Grid numbers are subject to change in F1 and as such this may leave incumbent teams reluctant to allow more competitors in and lose a share of the pie.

      2. Awarding more money to teams with more TV exposure is activly anti competitve. Its not like the backmarkers ar at a separate and therefore less attractive Grand Prix that may not get televised.

      Even so, the ratio of prize money for this season between 1st and 20th was only 1.6! The teams may still find a way to use all that up, and there is an arguement that states that manufacturers will still be able to bring their might to bear is inevitible, but at least the Backmarkers will have a means of competing and advancing through the grid, therby making ntering the sport a more attractive proposition!

      That and tethering the interest of the race hosting fees to a somewhat recognisabely legitimate level.

      1. I forgot to metion the advertising revenue that FOM gets all at the expense of the circuits as well.

      2. It’s really quite simple. The sport is producing insane amount of cash, that is not being paid back to those who are investing the most in it to make it that interesting an investment in the first place.

        CVC is drowning in cash. The whole thing seems absurd, but when you think back and realize that the sport was sold off in what is similar to a pure corrupt criminal deal where government official sells off something that he is supposed to represent and fight for, in exchange for personal gain, it starts to make sense that the whole structure and the ownership of the sport makes so little sense for the sport itself.
        Now that you think of it, Mosley was FIA’s government official and sold F1 for personal gain. Well, now that I think of it, it seems ever more obvious.

        You just have to think about it in a clear and pragmatic way.

        How come it’s not in the best interest of the entity that owns the sport to have the sport receiving a fair deal? If this isn’t a clear indication that the sport is suffering from a brain-controlling-parasite level of disease, I don’t know what is.

        People keep talking about how the people like Ross Brawn or someone like that, who cares about the sport, should inherit Bernie. You know, in order to make the sport better for those who are sport in the first place, but you are forgetting that the successor will be chosen by CVC, and it’s absolutely in no interest of theirs to have someone who will be fighting for the teams, instead for the CVC.

        This kind of deal could have never come to life, if Max didn’t sell F1 to Bernie for the peanuts money. This is pure mafia style criminal doing and I don’t understand how it is allowed to keep going on.

        1. You are only half Right
          #1 Formula1 is NOT a sport it is a BUSINESS they got you confused.It may be dressed as some kind of sport certain days but basically and mostly it is a business and ran as such.ask Fernando Alonso he said it some years ago.
          #2 as a business with businessman maestro bernie the bad guy ecclestone leading it,what
          do you expect him to do?make what businessman do:take all the money for themselves and leave governments and people as their slaves.
          It is a very easy concept it is called global capitalism.Bernie excells at it.

          1. pxcmerc (@)
            21st May 2014, 7:36

            it has less to do with capitalism and more to do with too few controlling interests. The ownership of private property should not be confused with the lessening of the free market, something a lot of people seem to want to confuse (see hot carl).

            Business as usual, people have been building pyramids for a long time, this is no different, copper-tops and all. These kinds of business practices only highlight the need for informed fans, morally conscious individuals and strong diverse interests participating in the sport, which will keep the market, more free.

      3. COTD, if @keithcollantine agrees with me.

      4. If you can afford to fly to Ibiza for a holiday but once you get there you can’t afford to eat then you don’t go. If you can’t afford to race in F1 then you don’t. You do something else you can afford to do. Simple.
        With regard to TV fees, it’s all wrong. F1 depends on sponsors. Those sponsors want their logos on TV.
        F1 should be paying the TV companies to broadcast free advertising for the sponsors. Same goes for football. Do that and you instantly solve the escalating cost problems.
        Downside of this, apart from the fact it will never happen, is smaller grids consisting of manufacturers and very rich amateurs. Which is of course how motor racing used to be.

    8. I really don’t see a solution to the cost issue.

      The only way to lower costs and even the playing field significantly is to have more technical constraints. In essence, the more that F1 becomes a spec series, the lower the costs would be. If you want innovation, you need money. If you want variety and differences between the teams, you need money. If you want to be the “pinnacle of motorsport”, you need money.

      It’s survival of the fittest, and the fittest in F1 are normally the ones with more money. The unfittest, even if they eventually get more money than they do now, will struggle.

      1. @ironcito, it is true that even if given a greater share of the income that the teams create there will always be a team that comes last and another 2nd. last etc. all the way to the top, but just like a household budget there are certain minimum costs that come out of every teams budget, engines, travel, transport and accomodation for crew, cars, tools, and tyres an so on, if these costs add up to 95% of the teams income then they only have 5% to spend on car development, however if FOM increased their income by 10% they would then have 15% or 3 times as much to spend on car development. I have chosen these figures for simplicity to illustrate the point, quite clearly several teams have basic costs that exceed their total income, for them a little more money will not make them winners but may allow them to compete longer.

        1. @hohum I understand what you say, but I don’t think that the problem is the absolute amount of money that the small teams have, it’s the little money that they have relative to the top teams. That’s why small teams are pushing for a cost cap, which wouldn’t give them more money, it would just give the top teams less. If all the teams had the same budget as Caterham (or whichever team has the smallest budget) they wouldn’t all be struggling, they would be fine. It’s having to keep up with the big guys that’s killing them.

          1. @ironcito, if they all had the same budget as Caterham then they would all be performing like Caterhams, why not just scrap F1 and have GP2 instead if that is what you want? What makes F1 the pinnacle of motorsport is the relentless quest to improve and be the best, not everyone can be a winner but every team that competes deserves a share of the revenue generated.

            1. @hohum I did NOT say that that’s what I wanted. In fact, my entire thread states the opposite. The comment about everyone having Caterham’s budget was to illustrate the point that the problem is the relative differences between the teams’ bugets, as opposed to your first reply, which implied that the problem was an absolute lack of funds to cover basic expenses.

      2. pxcmerc (@)
        21st May 2014, 7:41

        if you want innovation you need REAL competition. people will and always have spent as much money as they can, and will spend money over coming rules and constraints where able. Less rules, more ways to succeed, and cheaper ways as well.

        if you want to control costs, you find ways to make bad behaviors cost prohibitive, but you do not negate the possibility. A ballast system is one way to control costs, because it punishes teams that spend the most, and get the most out of their cars, yet still, if implemented properly, will not adversely affect that team’s opportunity for a championship, as the cars would be marginally effected, and find relief after other teams take up more ballast, and the system is tried and tested as in (was) SuperGT.

        1. pxcmerc (@)
          21st May 2014, 7:42

          *needs edit capability

    9. BJ (@beejis60)
      17th May 2014, 6:28

      To all you euro folk (stupid american here), what time is the DTM race on Sunday in your country? I cannot find a definitive answer anywhere…


      1. 13:30 German time. America has different time zones so I can’t convert that.

        1. Germany is 6 hours ahead of me, so that’s perfect. Thanks.

      2. Stupid american? Don’t be so harsh on yourself. We landed a man on the moon together, remember!?
        Try official website ‘www.dtm.com’ it’s on English to.
        Enjoy the race pal!

        1. ‘ on English’ ;-)

        2. I missed the event guide on the DTM site. Thanks

    10. F1 is so unpredictable you can’t really say exactly how many teams will win races. Mercedes could have several races with issues and other cars can catch up and win races. Yes we may require both silver arrows to run into problems, but that was the case in 1988 at Monza with the McLarens. Don’t rule out other teams winning Grand Prix this year.

      1. Ferrari seem to luck into a victory even in their bad post-1993 seasons, so I honestly expect them to win at least once. Heck, that 1988 win was pretty much down to luck as well.

        If you look at Alesi’s win in 1995, it basically came down to both Williams’ retiring and Schumacher’s electrical issue. Schumacher’s win at Indy 2005 was basically down to Michelin bringing the wrong tyre and nothing more. Raikkonen’s win at Spa in 2009 is likely to be down to skill, but KERS got him past Fisico, not skill. And of course there’s the 2011 Silverstone win of Alonso which was down to the FIA changing the rules for one race, they were back to 3rd behind Red Bull and McLaren short after.

        I’m expecting at least one victory, but knowing Alonso and Raikkonen to both be drivers who’ll be ‘there’ when they need to, I wouldn’t be surprised if Ferrari pull of a 1-2 in a lucky race or even 2 wins.

        1. @npf1 Agree with you as a whole, however I must point out how totally wrong you are about Alesi win in 1995(seeing my nick you understand its an important date for me). Alesi was in net second place way before Schumacher problems, having overtaken both Hill and Berger on track and he was driving away from Hill so was faster. And Coulthard spun off on 2nd lap, having been slower than Hill all weekend and behind him on track so there’s no reason to suggest Alesi would not have overtaken him too

          Point is: 1995 is wrong example year to suggest Ferrari always gets a win even on pure luck. Alesi might have won Canada thru some luck with Schumi’s problem but had lost at least 4 probable wins thru tech troubles and bad luck(Monza, Spa, Suzuka, Nurburgring). Factor in the customary Berger rampage at Hockenheim where he surely should have won and what we have is an exeption to your rule rather than proof

    11. @JayMenon10 On COTD:

      Why do I watch Formula One? It’s a fascinating world. I watch it because it reminds me of the ancient Rome: the decadence that inevitably accompanies a civilization at its heigh. Gigantic budgets, top engineers, high-tech equipment, a superb game and only ten hundredths of a second to be better than the competition quickly. I love that. Only man can invent something. And does it too, because it can.

      The pilots deliver incredible performance — they do almost as well as triathletes — but the fact that teams spend so much money is an integral part of the sport too.

    12. Mikko was only half Finnish maybe that’s why he didn’t even start let alone finish.

    13. I hope i explain this correctly because English is not my strong point. The ave. number of race for a team in the history of F1 is 77 races. So we can say the life span of a team is 77 race. Out of the 186 teams that has competed in F1 only 35(25.74%) have past that mark, only 31(22.79%) teams has won races(Ferrari,Mclaern,Williams has won 517(58.08%) races out of 890) and only 61(44.85%) of teams have scored points. What i’m trying to show here is that F1 was never a compediff sport.
      if has always been dominated by a selective few.

      1. An interesting perspective there @koosoos! Thanks for pointing that out.

    14. sorry it 136 teams and not 186 teams

    15. Second COTD this week!

      Thanks @keithcollantine!

    16. An F1 truck race would definitely be something I would want to watch. However, I have a suspicion that Mercedes just might win it.

    17. This “CostMania” crap is driving me crazy, when i hear sometimes Toto Wolf the head of Mercedes AMG that employs nearly 1250 people and has recruited over the past years dozens of senior engineers and technical director or Christian Horner RBR team principle that invested heavily in their wind tunnel/simulator and who employs Newey alone for 12 million $ a year, talking about the cost issues i just know how much of a drama this “CostMania” is .
      Of course let’s not forget the other active part of this drama apart from the overspending teams which is Monsieur Todt and Bernie Ecclestone with their stupid rules they are contributing day after day to make this sport out of reach to the non VIP people. Now with the strategy group F1 has become affordable to the VIP of the VIP teams.
      Mercedes and RBR have shown that whoever spend the most in the current era will have the advantage, thanks heaven (for a Ferrari fun) the Ferrari CDA has finally understand this and now there huge economical boost coming to the F1 team. A spending war between Ferrari, Mercedes and RBR has just began enjoy!!!!

    18. Do not be silly. Cost cap wouldnt work? OK. Start giving away equal sums of money to all the teams. Stop filling Ferrari, mcLaren and Williams pocket. If the cars are running under the 107%….they deserve the money. That way smaller teams can start closing the gap. I’ll bet you that Marussia with an extra 30 or 40 Millons a year can do better.
      We will also see less pay drivers.
      But… nobody wants to be fair.
      Just little changes can make smaller teams happier and more competitive. And bigger teams will still be happy because they will be allowed to spend millions an millons.
      How does Ferrari feal, spending 200 millions more than Force India and having the same success in 2014?
      How long can Ferrari take it? What will happen when ALO and RAI retire? Their cars will be automatically 2 or 3 posittions behind.
      Nobody (but us…the smaller team fans) wants a better F1. Big teams are heading to a 4 cars scuderias with only 5 or 6 teams.
      Again…not cost cap..just little changes as dividing FIA money equally among the 107%

    19. If you wanted to make a significant reduction in costs, you could try having fewer races. When the calendar featured fewer races, and those which were on the calendar were predominantly in Europe, the cost of getting to the races was much lower. If you make half the races long haul flyaways, then they’ll inevitably cost more for the teams. And every additional race is an additional cost.

      Lose three GPs from the calendar and you’ll instantly save every team millions.

      1. @mazdachris, you would save the teams millions but Bernie/FOM would lose millions. All these extra races on the calendar are driven by the increase in revenue that FOM take more than 1/3rd of after they charge their costs to the teams, the teams have to pay their own costs out of their share of the 63% of revenue (less FOM expenses) split unequally between 10 teams.

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