Ferrari must be more creative – Allison

F1 Fanatic Round-up

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In the round-up: Ferrari technical director James Allison says the team’s design staff needs to be given greater freedom.


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Ferrari ‘hurt by lack of creativity’ (BBC)

“It is a question of giving them the encouragement to actually go off and do more unusual things and then have the time to look at them and know that if they fail it’s OK because there’s still time to put a back-up plan in place and for that to work.”

Caterham play down Haas talk (Sky)

Cyril Abiteboul: “I think they have a very strong opinion of how they want to do Formula One. I don’t think that we tick their boxes”

Mercedes offer Formula One rivals feud for thought (Reuters)

Lewis Hamilton: “People say that we are best friends but we are not. We have not been since we were 13 years old. I say hi to him and he says hi to me. We don’t have lunch together; we don’t have dinners. We are cool.”

Rosberg: Our feud will be forgotten (The Telegraph)

“We discuss the issues and we have already discussed them and it will again be better and it will be forgotten.”

Merc drivers ‘a bit like teenagers’ – Wolff (ESPN)

“We started [setting boundaries] before the season and this is a dynamic process that is being recalibrated before every single weekend – before the race weekend, at the race weekend and after the race weekend. Sometimes, and I mean this with a positive spin, they are a little bit like teenagers finding out how far they can go.”

Christian Horner: “We are now where we should have been in January…” (Adam Cooper’s F1 Blog)

“We’re very much in Renault’s hands. We are making progress, they’re making progress, Total on the fuel side have been making progress. But really we are now where we should have been in January.”

Massa: Monaco easier than expected (Autosport)

“I expected Monaco to be much more tricky that how it was. It was better than expected.”

Caterham Group Statement

“Despite press rumours to the contrary, Caterham Group is not for sale.”

The Hamilton/Rosberg rivalry (MotorSport)

“The guys and girls at Marussia are some of the most welcoming and helpful in the paddock and their efforts don’t get enough respect.”

“Thoughts About the Most Absurd Place” (The Motorsport Archive)

“Like the precious, dull, soft safety net that is West London, this feels like the kind of place where fat, leery men go to die, poisoned by the strength of their own bullshit. Never has glamour looked so cheap.”


Comment of the day

If Hamilton’s handling of the media detracting from his performances on-track?

On track he is as good this season as he ever has been. For the first part of the season he seemed to concentrating all his focus onto racing. Now he thinks he’s playing mind games that are helping him beat Rosberg. If that’s what he really believes, it is delusional. He’s really playing right into the insatiable clutches of media spin where he is doomed to be endlessly surfing tornadoes.

What is wrong with just shutting up off track, and proving your points on track? The constant ever sharpening drama is somewhat entertaining, but ever so childish. The focus now is more on the sad soap opera, not his four wins so far. What would Hamilton most like to be remembered for, his words, or his accomplishments on track? It’s his choice, the world is watching.

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On this day in F1

Michael Schumacher took his second consecutive pole position of 1994 in qualifying for the Spanish Grand Prix.

Damon Hill took second for Williams, with David Coulthard ninth for Williams.

Image © Ferrari/Ercole Colombo

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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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106 comments on “Ferrari must be more creative – Allison”

  1. I partially hope Leimer gets a Lotus seat, but then again, I hope he stays in WEC and gets a factory drive with say Audi, or the new Nissan team maybe

    1. Let him stay in WEC and show us some great driving please.

    2. I think we are more likely to see Charles Pic in the case of Maldonado getting a penalty points race ban, but it’s good for Leimer to do some testing at the very least.

    3. Can’t see him getting an F1 drive. He might get a ‘standing around in headphones’ role, but that doesn’t seem to be the path to future F1 success.

  2. How on earth did that get COTD?

    1. Because it was eloquent, insightful and in my opinion entirely correct?

      Why don’t you write something better instead of doling out hollow criticism?

      1. +1 COTD is a great summary of the current situation

      2. @colossal-squid: This is the bit I have trouble with:

        What is wrong with just shutting up off track, and proving your points on track?

        This is disingenuous on a couple of levels. Firstly all drivers are contractually obliged to talk to the media, so they can’t just shut up. Secondly most people say that they don’t want to hear bland PR-approved answers, but as soon as any driver says something controversial they get slammed for that too.

        Otherwise, yes I think that Hamilton could have handled the situation better but I also think that his behaviour and his responses show the depth of his desire to win, and this sometimes unpleasant behaviour seems to be something that he shares with other champions. Some call it arrogance or entitlement, others call it self-belief and positive thinking.

        I’m hoping that Hamilton manages to channel his frustration into driving better, and doesn’t let it get on top of him. He does sometimes seem to be more mentally fragile than others, but that could just be because he lets his feelings show more.

        1. @jimg Of course he is going to talk…it is what he says and the tone of it and his facial expressions when he says it that is the ‘issue’. Including tweeting hours later that something he saw on the telemetry made him smile, yet wouldn’t say what, whereas in the past he has not hesitated to explain or tweet the ‘what’. Yes the controversy invites slamming…that’s why we don’t just want PR robots. Controversy and slamming go hand in hand, and NR has been getting his fair share of slamming too…moreso for it being assumed that he is not up to LH’s level, or being psyched out by LH, or it being assumed in spite of the stewards decision, that he did something sneaky in Monaco.

          I expect BE is absolutely in his glory.

      3. a colossal reply! :)

        1. ROTD (reply of the day)

  3. I agree with COTD. 3 weeks 1 day ago I said this;

    ‘Hamilton seems a lot more rounded this year, not only in his driving but especially in the way he conducts himself. He really seems much more at ease, more down-to-earth and much more likeable this year’

    I would not say the same now. Quite the opposite actually.

    1. Yes its amazing how quick people are to judge one sentence quotes from drivers.

      1. In the last couple weeks it has been way more than one sentence.
        I too agree with COTD, and at the start of the season I was delighted about how well both Lewis and Nico got along.

        This is now getting terrible to watch.

    2. @cornflakes
      People tend to be grumpy when they feel they’ve been robbed of a chance to succeed.

      If Rosberg had gotten pole fairly, I’m pretty sure Hamilton would have simply said “Nico was faster than me”, with respect, as he has done at previous races.

      It’s quite funny to see people making him the villain of the story, after everything that has happened this weekend.
      For instance, even if you dismiss the “parking” incident from Rosberg, the way he lost the car on the final lap of Q3 is not exactly something to be proud of and Nico has made several mistakes under pressure on the final Q3 run this season, China or Malaysia being other examples. Yet nobody talks about that.

      If Hamilton had lost the car on the final Q3 run, people would be talking about how he’s cracked under pressure, how Rosberg is getting to him with mind games and so on, yet up until Rosberg’s dodgy move in Monaco, Lewis has done all the talking on-track – he beat his teammate in straight fights 4 races in a row. Beat him to pole in Australia as well. Most likely would’ve beaten him to pole in Monaco as well. Most likely will do so in Canada too.

      Lewis does the talking on track, the media tries to do it off-track for him. Look up the original “hunger” quotes posted on the website from the press-conferences and compare it to the spin the media has put on it.
      He’s also being asked about Senna/Prost rivalry all the time by the journalists, yet people complain why he brings up Senna in conversations. He says he will “borrow a page out of Senna’s book” and everybody translates that to ramming your teammate off the road – as if that’s what Senna’s character was all about.

      The guy can do no right. It’s been like this for a while now.

      1. I understand your position completely. I may have come across a little strongly here and I will say I am actually a big Hamilton fan. All I’m saying is that compared to his previous years he has, up to now, really impressed me with how he conducts himself this year, despite the constant barraging by the media. He himself keeps saying this year how he has ‘grown up’.

        All I’m saying is that he comes across as a bad loser. When Rosberg loses he is magnanimous. When Hamilton loses he comes out with lines like ‘I wish you could see his telementary’ and ‘We’re not friends’. Having said that, F1 wouldn’t be the same without him and I love to see him win because I think he’s probably the most talented driver on the grid.

        1. @cornflakes

          He does not come across as a bad loser in this context.
          Rosberg is magnanimous in defeat because whenever he finishes 2nd to Lewis, it’s after a hard, but fair fight. Qualifying in Monaco at Saturday was anything but fair.

          I don’t remember Lewis having a sore loser reaction in Bahrain when he was beaten to pole by Nico. Neither in 2013 in the races where Nico out-performed him. If the playing field is level for him and his teammate, I’m convinced he can accept defeat with respect.

        2. OmarR-Pepper (@)
          28th May 2014, 1:14

          he’s probably the most talented driver on the grid

          Oh, now he has a rocketship and he wins in a way that is more dominant than what Vettel did… but he is the most talented on the grid?
          You see that the car is so dominant, that when the Mercedes drivers had the SC in Barhein, after that the cars still created a huge advantage. That in Monaco the “bad eye” didn’t stop Hamilton to be second.
          It’s the car. It’s Wolff and Paddy Lowe against Alonso, Vettel, Ricciardo, Bottas, etc.
          And of course I’m being ironic.

          1. Yup. The car drive themselves right?

          2. *Ross Brawn! ;)

          3. @omarr-pepper Wolff doesn’t do any engineering on the car…or anything technical. Also Lowe wasn’t on the team in time to really make a difference since this car was being created by Bob Bell…you might wanna actually look up history before you start spouting off because you don’t like Hamilton.

          4. OmarR-Pepper (@)
            30th May 2014, 14:09

            @magillagorilla and then I said “and of course I’m being ironic”.
            Sorry I don’t know the exact name of the guy(s) that designed the car, but as JackJ says, the cars don’t drive themselves, no matter how good they are. I’m only comparing the opinions that now mention how awesome Lewis was, when last year some of the same people said “It’s Newey against Alonso and Hamilton, etc”. I’m also NOT saying you said that. It was a general statement I made.
            And yes, you know I don’t like Hamilton, but I can’t deny he will win the championship fair and square. If Nico wins it, I’ll feel disappointed with the points system.

        3. To me, he is still more likeable and down-to-earth than in years gone by. He had a bad day… A really bad day PR wise. All I know is I couldn’t care less anymore haha. The guy’s fast, but says dumb things. Why people seem to care so much, and are so offended is kinda funny.

          We get things like “Boo, the drivers are so politically-correct now, say something real!”.. And when we get something real, although pretty dumb, we rag on the drivers and as the COTD says “What is wrong with just shutting up off track”. Oh well, we F1 fans sure are a confused bunch.

          In my book Hamilton’s foolish words are better than Senna’s or Schumi’s underhanded tactics, so I’ve just moved on, waiting with baited breath to read the next page of the Hamilton/Rosberg saga.

      2. Eh… A couple of weeks ago the hot topic was Rosberg’s psyche, and how he was being mentally cracked. It reached a point where several COTD asked for the non-stop armchair paychology to stop.

        1. and he showed his mental crack at mirabeu

      3. @andrewf1 Agree with you 100%. Hamilton was so angry for the quali because he suspected what something was going on and he confirmed his suspicions (if we believe his words) when he looked Nico’s data at Saturday night. If Lewis wasn’t straight talking guy he would go all political about the matter and poke Nico with knife (metaphorically speaking of course) when Nico never expected. I guess that his reaction is completely normal as I’m sure that 90% of humans would react in a same way as he did in a same situation. I’m also sure that Lewis will overcome this and come even stronger in the following races which is good for him and for the fans. It’s easy to go from hero to zero but we should all just wait and not jump to conclusions.

      4. @andrewf1

        Post of the week, frankly.

    3. @cornflakes

      Let’s be fair here, there’s no material supporting the idea that Hamilton’s performance has suffered from his frustration. He started P2 and finished P2 in Monaco, did not try any ambitious move to grab P1, had good pace, was good on fuel… just like the other days… He’s made of flesh and bones, he gets angry when he feels he’s been robbed, nothing psychologically wrong with that.

      1. @jcost plane and simple mate. I’m amazed at how concentrated Lewis was after such a difficult Saturday. And I’m also sure, as I guess the majority of F1 fans are, that if he overtook Nico he would be 20+ seconds ahead of Nico at the finish line, with the same car that is.

        1. @nidzovski I doubt he could finish 20+ seconds ahead of Nico at Monte Carlo but I think it’s what he wants to do in Canada. After Spain Martin Brundle said something like: “when Nico has the best set-up Lewis beats him, when Lewis has the best set-up he destroys him”. So his plan should be hit the nail on set-up and then destroy Nico. He knows he’s faster, Lauda knows it, I know it. However, Nico knows his flaws and strengths and works well with the tools available to him; where he lacks in raw speed he has in will to learn and it helps him setting-up the car that’s why he spends long hours studying his data and Lewis data because if both cars have optimum set-up he knows his chances decrease dramatically.

          1. Perhaps, but I think that nothing is written in stone. If LH hadn’t cranked his boost in Spain, perhaps NR would have been closer or even passed LH. It’s hard to envision that since what’s done is done, but what if…would MB and you be so sure of LH’s ability to ‘destroy’ NR then? How about if telemetry issues hadn’t altered NR’s clutch setting and he had gotten a better start in…was it China? The race escapes me by he ended up 6th after the start. Is that what it takes for LH to ‘destroy’ NR?

            I do agree that it ‘feels’ like MB is right, but I’m pretty sure that they are at least a bit closer to each other than it seems on the surface. It is not a guarantee that LH would have won in Australia, nor gotten pole in Monaco without NR going off. And he wasn’t able to pass LH in Monaco…yeah yeah I know…passing is near impossible at Monaco…yet we saw lots of them…just not from LH. If he actually had 20 seconds more speed than NR had he gotten pole, then he would have gotten by NR.

          2. @robbie Indeed. I didn’t said it’s written, I just said it should be Lewis goal. He wants to make a statement but to achieve that he will need to beat his very competitive team mate who will play all the cards he has. On the engine boost, it looks like Wolff just was making an effort to somehow clear tensions… apparently Nico did the same in Bahrain (and I think Lewis used it to repass him in Bahrain as well) like Coulthard said, most drivers do it and will keep doing it because they usually anticipate that the other guy will push the button as well.

          3. @jcost What I meant by not written in stone is that things are ever changing and evolving, and I don’t think it is written in stone that when NR has the best setup LH beats him and when LH has the best setup he destroys NR. The bottom line for me on the engine boost thing is that it sounds like both drivers were using it until a point between races when the team all agreed collectively that the drivers shall not change their boost without permission, and in the race prior to Monaco LH went against the agreement and did it anyway.

      2. Well said @jcost

  4. Cotd. Don’t you think Lewis is doing is talking the track but whenever he attends the mandatory press events he’s constantly asked questions until he says something quotable. Honestly watching the sky interview of Lewis after monaco was cringful in terms of the female interviews persistent probing questions. The guys just come second in the race. Ask about the race and giveth guy a break instead of insesent questioning of the nice Lewis relationship. Journos should get some integrity!

    1. Well there are no journalists in the cockpit and all you could hear on the radio transmissions was him whinging and whining about how he wasn’t pitted when he wanted to. He only thinks about number one and does nothing for the betterment of the team. His publishment of telemetry in his McLaren years proved that. His attitude on the podium was also very distasteful. He has just come second, a position most team would kill to have at this stage of the season, and you would have swore he had just been sacked and scored a Caterham seat. He has the worst attitude in the sport and is not gracious in defeat in the slightest. And it doesn’t take a persistent journalist for him to show his colours.

      1. He has the worst attitude in the sport and is not gracious in defeat in the slightest.

        Spa and Monaco! Two occasions he felt it was unfair and you brand him like that? Wow, that’s a stretch.

        1. Yeah, I remember his attitude after Australia this year being one of the most marked changes in him anyway. He looked genuinely unfazed, whereas before he would have at least looked a bit disappointed if not frustrated.

          His publishment of telemetry in his McLaren years proved that.

          I think that should be the single publishing of telemetry in one race from all of his McLaren years. So that is far from evidence that he isn’t at all a team player.

      2. @gjessopp that’s a tad harsh, especially since his ‘whinging and whining’ was him saying *he* should have come in. He was berating himself for not making the decision to pit. At the end of the day, if a driver visits the pits on his own volition out of sequence, it’s his teams job to service him, whether they like it or not.

        1. All I’m saying is when the going is good for him then he is as happy as can be. When things aren’t going his way he is sulky and petulant. 3 years ago in Monaco he even went as far to say that it was because he was black as an excuse for being summoned to the stewards multiple times.

          He isn’t a team player and very rarely shows any form of sportsmanship. And personally, even though I am British, would like nothing better than to see rosberg steal this championship from him.

          1. All I’m saying is when the going is good for him then he is as happy as can be. When things aren’t going his way he is sulky and petulant.

            Sounds like your describing the majority of F1 drivers to me Gareth, or at least the successful ones. Drivers like Button, Vettel and Alonso are also gloomy if a race doesn’t go their way; go figure. They may be better at saying nothing at all instead of letting our their frustrations all in one go, like Hamilton does, but they aren’t exactly rays of sunshines and they don’t get baited half as much as Hamilton does.

            And not much of a team player? Please. I don’t remember Senna or Schumacher being very good ‘team players’ either when they were fighting for the championship. Their sportsmanship was often questionable as well. But again, one rule for Hamilton…

      3. Don’t forget, journalists choose which radio messages we hear

  5. So Cyril finally came out from hiding at Caterham? Where is he on the weekends because he has nothing to say? The team has been crippled with lousy management since the beginning. If they’re going to improve they need better leadership. Asmat and now Cyril don’t meet the standard needed for F1.

  6. There have been some unflattering observations made of Monaco since the weekend, I would just like to say that whilst those observations are no-doubt accurate they do not give an accurate picture of Monaco for the rest of the year when it is a very pleasant, clean and safe place to visit/live, not only that but I actually had a coffee there that was better and cheaper than I was used to getting on the rest of the Cote d’azure. Bernies vision of F1 and it’s promotion as the ultimate display of conspicuous consumption has some unfortunate side effects.

    1. To me its interesting to read the impression of people about how the event changed. That said, a coffee or a beer on a top spot for 8 EUR doesn’t feel too bad for me. Afterall here in Prague you are likely to pay 2-4 EUR for one too, and in many a big city or indeed tourist hotbet you get a warm beer or a cold coffee for about 5-6 EUR quite regularly in my experience.
      And as far as I know, at most F1 races you are lucky if you are allowed to buy 0,5 l of water for 4 EUR!

  7. While Hamilton’s actions off-track might be detracting frmo his performances on-track.. I tell you this. It does F1 a world of good having this sort of spat instead of everyone lovey-dovey with Mercedes running away with the championship.

    Hamilton proves to be immature at times, but this is what pulls in spectators, it’s what puts bums on seats and it’s what keeps F1 alive. After 4 years of RBR domination and dwindling fans, the last thing F1 needed was another dominant team. Thankfully the respective drivers are closely-matched, but even that was getting stale after Barcelona. Monaco re-invigorated F1 in my opinion and increased it’s global exposure.

    As they say, “there is no such thing as bad publicity”. If the fastest driver out there (in my humble opinion) wins 4 in a row, loses 1 then whines, but draws in fans and increases the number of F1 conversation topics.. Then I say continue doing it Hamilton. He wins the WDC, although not looking like the greatest of guys, and we get one hell of an interesting season along with increased viewership (fingers crossed)!

  8. The problem with Hamilton’s way to express himself in the mindgames it’s that it never helps him. The mindgames always leave him on the backfoot.

    He’s not like Webber that seemed to react better to being the underdog in 2010. He often put himself in that position. Hamilton ends up saying things that are questionable and drive him off the track, where he should do all the talking, where we all know he is a step ahead compared to Rosberg (who would deny it?).

    He switches to his weakness… that’s not good.

    1. I really don’t think they are mind games in the slightest. He just responds to journalist’s questions, for the most part, just like everyone else. We see more of it because he’s a successful British driver who gets asked incendiary questions by a British Media hungry for drama. I mean just look at how much they’re pushing the Prost/Senna comparisons for god’s sake.

  9. I for one hope Rosberg uses Hamilton’s inability to control his emotions and plays him like a fiddle, taking the WDC with him. You go Brittany. Its the points at the end of the year, not who can squeeze an extra .10 seconds on a single lap. He should be slapping him on the back and grinning ear to ear whenever he gets on the top step, and using whatever damn engine modes he has at his disposal to fight. Wait till Hamilton’s pit crew screw up a tyre change and watch for the rattle flying out the cockpit.

    1. you talk like every race circuit is Monaco, Montreal is up ahead and there is no room for Kangaroo tactics at mirabeau

  10. In my opinion (similar to @timi although I am a bit more cynical), this whole situation smacks of being slightly stage managed and then blown out of proportion by the press to sell their own copy. The “characters” are playing their parts too well for my liking, and we are just falling for it.

    Hamilton and Rosberg seem a bit too willing to “play the parts” of Senna and Prost. Rosberg the cool professor, Hamilton the passionate natural talent hot head! You know that Hamilton will not turn down being compared to Senna, he probably loves playing the “role”. Even Lauda has started making that comparison. The fact that Hamilton is still allowed by team management to continue the muck throwing after the race (where is that press officer of theirs?!? Have the team lost control of him already?). These are meant to be professional racers! Hamilton, as per his competitive and racing pedigree is meant to be concentrating on the next race. Come on guys…think about it!

    I do not doubt that there is “friction”, but Mercedes seem all too willing to let it air in public and the press are there to just lap it up. What does it generate? More headlines, more excitement, more viewing figures = happy F1, team shareholders, TV execs and press selling the stories.

    Is F1 any different from boxing with regards to marketing? No! This is just the f1 equivalent of boxers (who have know each other since childhood and sparred together) suddenly staring each other down and calling each other’s mother names at the weigh in! Then after the fight they are best friends again and are hugging. It is the same thing.

    In many ways, it is fun and good for the sport. It will may the f1 season much more interesting as @timi says. However, when the mechanics of F1 (DRS, Tyres what have you) are so artificial, why should we expect the relationships between drivers to be any less so!

  11. I don’t think the events of this past weekend will be forgotten as easily as Rosberg believes. Hamilton does not come across as the kind of person who would forget, he believes he was wronged at that’s that.
    Rosberg opened a can of worms in Monaco, and the next grands prix is one of Lewis’ best circuits. Canada will be an indication on how the rest of the season will pan out, everyone awaits Hamilton’s response. Nico appears to be downplaying the effects of Monaco, but it only takes one incident.
    Estoril 1989 was the race in which Alain Prost famously was shown the pitwall at 170mph by Aryton Senna. Prost never forgot that moment, and his relationship with his team mate when downhill from there on. How much the events of Estoril led to what was to follow in Japan is debatable, but it must have curried Alain’s opinion even further against Senna.
    The cat is out of the bag, and it has sharp claws!

    1. 1988 actually, never mind . In 1989 Senna crashed with Berger, Mansell and of course Prost. At the time Senna was the villan. I hope Lewis remains Lewis and not turn into Senna..

    2. Well I don’t think you can compare the Estoril 1989 incident with Monaco 2014. Prost was livid with Senna trying to put him into the wall. Not the same as making a mistake in qualy, even if Lewis believes it was on purpose. It might get downhill from now on very sharply indeed, but this particular incident will not be the cause. Simply put, there has never been, in recent memory, a year in which team-mates both fought for the championship only between themselves and remained on good terms. Top F1 drivers are not known for lacking egos(even those who try to create an public image of such)

    3. Where I disagree is that even though it seems both drivers were feeling each other and the team out for how they could advantage themselves, it was actually the incident that Wolff felt compelled to state publicly, that LH cranked his boost to keep NR back in Spain, a decision by LH that was worthy of him apologizing for, that imho set up how things would go at Monaco. In other words I think it was LH that opened up the can of worms in Spain, not NR in Monaco. I think they might be pretty squared off right now on the nonsense meter.

  12. I think at this point, the headline could be something like “Ferrari pulls out of F1” or “Bernie Ecclestone will drive for Red Bull next season” and people would still only talk about Lewis vs Nico. I mean, no one has even mentioned Double points yet!

    1. @theo-hrp Yeah . Agreed. Too much discussion .
      On another note , the truck in the middle of the race track is ridiculous !

  13. I think Toto Wolff made some interesting remarks. About his drivers being like teenagers pushing the limits, I think giving your drivers a set of engine modes and then not allowing the use of them is strapping the cat onto the bacon (as we say in Dutch). Of course Hamilton would do everything on the last lap of the Grand Prix to keep Rosberg behind (especially since Rosberg might be doing the same to get by). I think they can afford to let their drivers use engine modes as they see fit. It’s not like they are going to lose the constructors’ anymore, and in a sense it would be ‘use it at your peril’, if it results in an engine failure.

    Toto’s comment concerning the truth about Rosberg’s and Hamilton’s view of the incident being somewhere in the middle, suggests that Rosberg indeed could have done more to prevent the yellow flags, but felt not inclined to do so.

    Re COTD and millions of journalists and commenters harping on about mind games: I find it a bit silly, and quite annoying also. Hamilton sometimes (quite often, of late) makes silly comments, but to suggest they form a part of a plan to destabilize Rosberg is ridiculous. For better or worse he wears his heart on his sleeve but he is no schemer.

    1. “Strapping the cat onto the bacon”…that has to be the most fantastic phrase I have ever heard.

    2. On the engine modes, it really depends whether they can effectively police it (or even remove those engine modes from the car before the race?). It makes perfect sense not to use them, if they are sufficiently ahead of other teams. If both use full engine mode then they stress the engines more (also use more fuel but that’s unlikely to be an issue) and are more likely for either one or both of the engines to fail, but they cancel each other out. If neither use it they still finish 1-2 but have better reliability. Kind of a game theory thing where both drivers competing for their own best interest could actually disadvantage them both.

      1. @keithedin, I think I read somewhere in the myriad of articles on the matter that they have now prevented their drivers from changing engine modes manually (even though that sounds a bit strange to me).

  14. Say what you like about Nico vs Lewis etc, but I’ve never seen consistently so many comments on every article! Must be good for f1.

  15. Sochi looks like a boring downforce-y circuit. Lets hope the extreme climatic conditions of Russia adds some spice.

    1. Russia’s a big place. Are you talking about there being extreme climatic conditions around Sochi specifically?

    2. @udm7 I think the term you’re looking for is a standard Tilkedrome…

      1. Thats generalising it a bit. Austin and China are great venues, while India is partly limited by Pirelli.
        Thats about it really.

    3. @udm7 That’s what I thought too but I’ll reserve judgement after understanding the scale. That turn 3 will be 800 meters long, twice as long as Istanbul turn 8 which is crazy stuff, previously unheard of in F1

      And if I were you, I wouldn’t be counting on any crazy climate there as Sochi has the mildest climate of anywhere in Russia. Even in October the temps are around 20C. Though chances of (mild) rain in October are 50% so there’s that at least

    4. Sochi is almost the same latitude as San Marino

    5. @raceprouk @matt90
      I was hoping for some early October Rain (Snow would be better) and, well, Russia is considered a cold, but i forgot how big it is, even in terms of latitude.
      I admit I didn’t check the scale but it has a whole bunch of low speed corners and a few high speed corners. India and China have longer back straights but we havent seen a large amount of overtaking on those. So hence I concluded it’ll have a less than exciting racing. I may be wrong, Only time will tell.

  16. Wow, that Formula Renault 2.0 restart at Silverstone is pure madness!
    It could have been really bad :s

    1. Yeah absolutely crazy, my heart was in my mouth for a few secs there! Surely someone will be getting reamed hardcore for that mistake.

  17. Ferrari seem to be lost. They have all the right people, all the right partners and heaps of resources, but they have consistently failed to produce a car that can challenge for race wins since 2009 (though the F10 was pretty handy). There has to be something wrong with the structure of the team, something happening at the top level that just isn’t conducive to getting results. I wish I had an idea as to what it was, but I don’t.

    1. I strongly believe that except their wind tunnel problems that this year seem to work better, they are conservative in design and in engine… in engine i get it .. its not cool to see a Ferrari blow engines because of tuning in the limits but somehow .. someday they must risk to gain. In all F1 era if you dont risk you dont gain anything and this is what is huppening in Ferrari this moment.

    2. @geemac I believe the comments we’re seeing is a reaction to Domenicali being moved on, it is clear that Ferrari have been told from high up in the ranks that they have to do better or their jobs are on the line. Hence why we are now seeing comments like the one below:

      “It is a question of giving them the encouragement to actually go off and do more unusual things and then have the time to look at them and know that if they fail it’s OK”

      If I read this right, its a case of “changing things” for the sake of appearing to shake things up without actually understanding why it is that they’re failing… It is after all Ferrari :P

      1. @dragoll I think you are right there @dragoll. I’m no expert in workplace motivation, but I’m pretty sure that “we are going to sack one of you if we don’t win everything this year” isn’t the right way to motivate people to be successful.

        1. Right. In fact, look at how well that strategy is working for Caterham. (We’ll sack the whole team if we don’t improve.) One would think Ferrari could instead reward some outside the box thinking.

      2. @dragoll,@geemac,@bullmello, I beg to differ, I think what Allison is saying is that the design staff have, in the past, been ordered to produce a better package for the next race after every race instead of being given the time to do a thorough revision to be ready when it’s ready, the result being all resources devoted to a quick fix in one area rather than taking the time to work methodically on the whole car.

        1. I think you are right @hohum. Ferrari’s attitude to innovation by other teams recently seems to be as follows:

          (a) Why didn’t we think of it first;
          (b) Because we didn’t think of it, can we have it declared illegal; and
          (c) oh ok, how long before we can have it too.

          It is a very reactionary process, they don’t seem to ever take the time to just let their own car’s natural development path carry on as they intended.

          1. @geemac, agreed, I probably should have gone on and mentioned how successful Ross Brawn has been in all the teams he has been associated with and how that success has usually come around his 3rd. year of steady progress with the team.

    3. They’ve failed to produce one that can regularly challenge, but I think more than just Alonso should get credit for Ferrari getting at least a race win every year (up until now).

  18. Everybody here is talking about how Lewis’s mind games are only going to come back and bite himself in the backside. I agree that at this stage – the FIA having given its verdict and the grand prix over – he should just take Rihanna’s advice and “shut up and drive”. But I don’t agree that Lewis is simply playing mind games, playing it up for the media or whatever other half-sinister motive people can think of. I think Lewis genuinely feel that he has been done wrong by, and it is not difficult to see why. Note that my point here is not that there is a great big conspiracy against Hamilton. My point is just that if you look at the little data available to us – the replays, other incidents from the weekend – it really is very inconclusive about Rosberg’s mistake, and it’s very easy to see why Lewis, who probably knows now that he upset Nico in Barcelona by using an engine mode he wasn’t supposed to use, feels that Nico did it on purpose. Mind you, Lewis was angry about that incident as soon as he got out of the car after qualifying, before he even had any idea of what had actually happened.

    If you look at a replay of the incident on YouTube, you will see just how pathetic the incident looks. The onboard shot gives you the strange wiggling of the steering wheel, while the track-side cameras show that the car does manage to rotate somewhat, then the lock-up comes and then the car continues in a straight line. Notice that the lock-up 1) occurs halfway through corner entry and 2) it is only the inside front wheel that locks, and only briefly. If Nico was really struggling to rotate the car because he was running out of grip, you would expect the load-bearing outside tyre to lock up when he applies the brakes. Of course, if Nico has already given up on the corner at this point, he might not be putting in as much steering angle as he would otherwise and the outside wheel may not be under so much stress. But if you want to say that, you would have to concede that the lock-up itself comes too late to be a contributing factor to Nico missing the corner. Whatever caused him to miss the corner, it would have to have happened before the lock-up. Now think about the incidents we saw through-out the weekend – a lot of people struggling with the brake-by-wire, causing huge clouds of smoke as they lock up their front tires going into Sainte Devote, Mirabeau and to a lesser extent the Nouvelle Chicane. Was there every an incident as pathetic as the Rosberg one? He approaches the corner and starts wiggling his steering wheel. He then has a minor lock-up, halfway through corner entry, on his inside wheel and proceeds to drive off the track. It really does look unusual from the track-side camera shots.

    So I don’t think it is difficult to see how Hamilton might feel that he has been done wrong by. Perhaps the AMuS claim is even true and Rosberg did in fact brake 10 metres later into Mirabeau on that lap, and perhaps that’s what Lewis saw in the telemetry. 10 metres is very significant in such a short braking zone. I think if you look at an extended replay of the incident, you will see that Rosberg clears the hill after Casino in a slightly awkward fashion that may have upset the car on braking and entry to Mirabeau, which could explain why the incident looks so strange. As Rosberg himself said, he also knew he was on provisional pole and that allowed him to take some extra chances, particularly in sector two (which starts between Casino and Mirabeau) where Lewis was quicker. But I think if you are predisposed to see the Mirabeau incident as deliberate, which Lewis no doubt was and is, it is easy to find evidence to support that judgment. I really doubt that the anger and attitude Lewis is showing is some calculated attempt at mind games.

  19. I think Newey will join Ferrari

    1. Lucas Wilson (@full-throttle-f1)
      28th May 2014, 12:20

      You and me both :-)

    2. @paeschli
      I don’t think Newey will join Ferrari. Why would he?

      At RBR Newey has freedom and power. At Ferrari he’d have to work with Montezemolo.

      Neither does Newey have to prove himself to anyone. He’s already a legend after his years with Williams, McLaren and RBR. Even if he’d make Ferrari champions again, that couldn’t make him any more respected than he already is.

      Besides, Newey has a family in England. If he wanted new challenges, he’d probably pick one of the many teams based there. I don’t think working at Ferrari is as glamorous for engineers as it is for drivers.

      The only reason why Newey would join Ferrari that I can think of, is money. But Newey must have a fortune already after all those successful years in Formula One and I believe RBR is already paying him quite nicely – and prepared to raise his salary if necessary.

  20. I think Sochi should be boycotted. This race will be another tool for Putin and to show his nation Russia’s superioty and steer everybody’s attention from their poverty, just to make proud of Russia, just like events in Ukraine. World can’t tolerate Russia, which uses plain force to bite off a chunk of land from another country.

    1. Just be very careful about judging either Ukraine or Russia over the current crisis, this is a situation where no sources are particularly trustworthy and the trustworthy reporters so far have not been in the right place at the right time. It’s not like one single one of us lives in a country that hasn’t been in a dispute over sovereignty – are we to boycott Spain and the UK over Gibraltar too?

      Besides which, what country doesn’t spend obscene amounts of money on marketing themselves? At least this way, we get a sporting event and lets be honest, the way to make people more progressive – a criticism that you actually can level at Russia with any confidence – is to give them more and more exposure to cultures that wouldn’t put up with those kind of laws.

      1. I might not live in Ukraine, but I live in Lithuania, which is near Russia, and I know what it means Russia’s propaganda.

        I met few russian tourists about a month ago,which asked me a few directions and we had little chat. They said that russian media were saying that lithuania is very unfriendly and even agressive towards russians and recommended not to go to Lithuania. But those tourists said they were surprised how polite, friendly and helpful lithuanians actually are.

        1. Right, so you probably understand better than I do that the breakup of the soviet union was, just like every other empire that fell, not a perfect thing and border disputes were and are inevitable for a few hundred years and when those disputes happen, very few people understand the full picture because we are all being told opinion as if it is fact.

          Remember, the soviet union used to forcibly relocate it’s citizens and plenty of Russians were forced to live in the Ukraine. A year after the Ukraine forced over 20,000 people out and into Crimea for the sole reason that they were not Ukranian, the peninsula was given to Ukraine. 20% of the population of Crimea were alive when that happened – 1 in 5 people suffered that trauma only to find themselves handed to Ukraine, the people who perpetrated that little piece of history.

          I’m not saying Russia are in the right, nor am I saying the Ukraine are. I’m saying it’s complicated in the same way that all breakups of Empires is complicated for hundreds of years after. You need look no further than the breakup of the British Empire for evidence of that.

          And before we start boycotting anyone, we really need to remember that Viktor Yanuyovch who was, at the time the elected president of Ukraine has stated that he asked Russia to occupy Crimea. The unelected government seized control with violence – the very thing you called a boycott against Russia for. Again not saying that “right”, whatever that means, is on the side of the Russians, but it’s hardly a black and white situation and one which needs careful consideration instead of kneejerk, bridgeburning reactions.

      2. Democracies look like democracies. Autocracies look like autocracies. If it looks like, it probably is.

        It’s up to you my friend.

  21. Alex McFarlane
    28th May 2014, 11:48

    Meanwhile, over on the Beeb website, Christian Horner believes the Red Bull raced the Mercedes, convieniently forgetting Hamilton’s sight issues.
    Perhaps one thing that was lost in the weekends other shenanigans is that even on a circuit where power was less of a factor, the Mercs cruised off into the distance without much difficulty. Given what transpired in Spain with boostgate, we now know for definite that the Mercs are sandbagging, and still the other teams can’t keep up. A great job by Mercedes on the W05, and if other teams can catch up and push them then maybe the new formula will be fully vindicated.

    1. And at the same time drivers and engineers at Williams, FI and MacL are loooking at their steering wheels wondering where that extra power setting is.

  22. People say that we are best friends but we are not. We have not been since we were 13 years old. I say hi to him and he says hi to me. We don’t have lunch together; we don’t have dinners.

    Ah common Lewis! It’s better that all the talking is done on the track. He is simply damaging himself by letting his emotions out so publicly. As much as I see Nico trying to calm the fire, I see Lewis adding more fuel to it. He has already faced a season where people remember him for his off track antics rather than his good drives and if he keeps this way, 2014 might also be remembered for the same reasons.

    As in COTD, it was rightly mentioned that people have almost forgotten about his 4 successive wins. So it’s time to shut up!

    1. Ah, the good old days of tweets, dogs and the posse-in-the-paddock.

  23. In my opinion COTD is spot on. But it’s kind of funny. I hear a lot of moaning on this site about Hamilton’s loose mouth and how he should concentrate on doing the job on track. That’s why the media throws these bones, because there are a lot of people waiting to split the hair and make assumptions. I’m not reading many comments about the evolution on track, just how childish Hamilton is. How are the f1 fanatics so different when they actually enjoy it and don’t hold back from fueling the fire. Maybe we should also have less to say about it. Anyone else in favor of enforcing a mean comments limit? 100/year?

  24. I remember in the past lewis would make a comment & than have to eat his words on the track.

    In 2008 for example he said he had never made a mistake in the wet & then hit the wall at Monaco.
    At Montreal he said that he was above making silly mistakes & then drove into Kimi in the pits.
    At Hungary he said he’d never been overtake round the outside because he woudl never put himself in a position to be & then Massa overtook him round the outside.
    In 2009 at Monaco he said after practice that he felt he was the best driver out there that weekend & then he put it in the barrier in qualifying.
    Going into 2011 he said he was the most focused he had ever been & then had a season of driving into people, He then made the comment at Monaco about only getting penaltys because he was black.
    Going into 2012 he said he was the best race starter on the grid & then got owned by Jenson off the line in Melbourne.

    I could list more.

    1. I say this without any intention of being sarcastic; please do.

  25. I really hope that this whole Hamilton-Rosberg saga won’t end like Hamilton-Alonso or Senna-Prost. If that happens I believe it will be Hamilton who is shown the door, not only because he is the one that makes things worse, but also because of the German driver in a German car thing (at least this is what I believe Mercedes would want).

    And if he leaves Mercedes what is the likelihood of him finding a competitive seat after that? Looking at the previous examples, it took Prost 3 years to find, and Alonso is still looking for it.

    1. He could go to Red Bull. I would love to see him and Vettel go head to head.

      1. I’m not convinced Red Bull want him. Christian Horner seems to get the barge pole out whenever it’s mooted.

      2. I would love to see that pair as well, but Red Bull currently have two strong drivers as Ricciardo is doing better than expected, so they don’t have any reason to change anything. Also they might want to avoid the risk of another big conflict between drivers; I really can’t imagine Vettel and Hamilton going along that well in a fast car. But yeah, I hope Lewis calms down a bit.

  26. As for this COTD, and when drivers will shut up off the track, the counterpoint is obvious and much-repeated. Drivers don’t call press conferences to deliver manifestos. They give interviews, and people ask them questions. Often they answer. And if they don’t give interviews, or don’t answer, they get branded as sullen, angry, bitter, disinterested, uncommitted, whatever.

    I remember back in the olden days of 2010-2011, when Hamilton decided to stop doing these interviews for a bit, people were talking about his sunglasses, or his girlfriend, or Rihanna, or comparing his musical tastes to those of civilized asthetes like the pianist Adrian Sutil. The press is not going to stop generating news about a driver’s inner life because he shuts up. So he had better speak up if he wants to define himself. And if everyone doesn’t like what he’s got to say, so be it. They are not running for office or applying to be your kids’ nanny.

    As far as what Hamilton what will be remembered for, it’s far too late to roll out this old rusty cart about how he will never get anywhere unless he starts being more neat and less street. While people have been chiding him, in between extended-pinky finger sips of their afternoon tea, he has been racking up an astounding record, and maintained his reputation as the quickest driver in the sport. In this regard, it may be best to learn from the recent words of Jenson Button. He confirmed that, while Hamilton got very emotional whenever he was beaten by Button, at the next race, Hamilton would stay quiet, put his head down, and destroy Button.

    1. Getting emotional when you are beaten doesn’t sound very professional. But I like the destroy part that comes after.

  27. Ok, but who will get it for them?

  28. Ferrari seems to be very creative when they are looking for ways to favour Alonso.

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