Jules Bianchi, Marussia, Spa-Francorchamps, 2014

Bianchi ‘remains unconscious’ – father

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Jules Bianchi, Marussia, Spa-Francorchamps, 2014In the round-up: Jules Bianchi’s father Philippe has told a French newspaper that his son is still in a comatose state following his tragic Japanese Grand Prix accident.

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Pain of Jules Bianchi's crash is endless - father (BBC)

"Philippe Bianchi: 'Every day, Jules is running a marathon. All of his organs are working without assistance. But, for now, he remains unconscious. He's moving forward. So we hope for a new evolution. The next one would be for him to get out of his coma.'"

Kimi Raikkonen says Ferrari can win this year’s world title (Sky F1)

"I don't see a reason why not. We have made big gains and we will continue to make big gains during this year. Obviously everybody will improve, so it depends what the rest are doing, but we are definitely going the right way and doing the right things."

'Sensitive' Raikkonen needs full support of Ferrari - Arrivabene (ESPN)

"Arrivabene: 'In Malaysia I was talking with him after practice and we know each other for many years, and I said to him 'Kimi, if you are attacking for nothing, expect me to react', but Kimi likes this kind of relationship when you talk with him straight into the face.'"

Red Bull takes comfort from Ferrari's Formula 1 recovery (Autosport)

"Christian Horner: 'As Ferrari has demonstrated, things can be turned around pretty quickly when you've got a clear direction and a clear focus. Whatever we can do from our side, because we are reliant on each other, in order to assist Renault understand their current issues, there's no bigger priority.'"

Honda to ‘power up’ engine in Bahrain (F1i)

"Eric Boullier: 'Reliability was a constant problem for us so today is a very good achievement and we know which steps we can still get out of this engine so already from Bahrain we can power up a little bit the power unit. In Barcelona then we have another spec coming, we keep going and improving every race'"

Difficult to feel sorry for multi million pound worth Alonso: David Coulthard (Economic Times of India)

"David Coulthard: 'There is no doubt that Fernando is still a great driver. I think he will comeback and have success in the future. But he has to take responsibility for his decisions and he doesn't always appear to be most competitive.'"

Plea to make F1 races more attractive (Shanghai Daily)

"Yang Yibin: 'Changes have to be made to the sport. UBS was the title sponsor of last year’s Chinese GP, but they didn’t extend the contract this year, and there must be a reason for it. Maybe we can expect something new when we go into the post-Bernie (Ecclestone) era.'"

WEC vs F1 (MotorSport)

"Watching the LMP1 cars being flung through the Becketts complex in the closest competition while also dodging around the GTE cars showed driving skill of a kind you rarely if ever see in F1. The track is also far busier, with almost half as many cars again starting in Silverstone as in China."

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Comment of the day

After enjoying the opening round of the WEC at Silvestone, @countrygent highlights three areas where Formula 1 could learn from its sportscar counterpart…

I can condense an excellent ten hours of endurance racing at Silverstone into the weekend into three statements:

1) The WEC has shown an excellent understanding of the core fans’ desires by introducing Le Mans-style starts for each race and has never seemingly done anything to infringe on the the purity of the spectacle.

2) Motorsport requires variety – would the Formula Ford-style duel between Fassler and Jani been possible without having vastly different packages? Since the WEC’s core appeal is its variety, by putting 1000bhp+ prototype monsters on the same racetrack as a V8 Ferrari that is nineteen seconds slower, is motorsport necessarily improved by homologation?

3) F1 has no monopoly on driving brilliance. The weekend efforts of Neel Jani, Mark Webber, Sam Bird, Tristan Gommendy, James Calado and especially Andre Lotterer amount to as hearty a portion of driving skill as any Grand Prix. In Lotterer the WEC has, had he got his F1 chance, a likely F1 frontrunner.

Are you listening, Bernie?
@countrygent

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  • 105 comments on “Bianchi ‘remains unconscious’ – father”

    1. One problem everyone highlights with the track in China, and elsewhere too, which I had never quite noticed just how bad it is, is the amount of run off there is. There is acres* of it at each corner. This can’t be good for the sport. Spa, Singapore, and Canada all survive without this much, so why do these tracks need it? It is far more than ample space to be safe, and it distances fans at the track as well as the cameras.

      *seriously, look at some camera angles, it is horrific.

      1. Silverstone isn’t much better. If you watched any of the WEC race this weekend you’d have seen a lot of fighting for position with repeated excursions well off track and no consequence to the drivers.

        1. Surely you don’t mean the two Audi’s barreling at full speed off track in line astern formation and not bothering to return to the track for several hundred feet past abbey, do you?

          Have these people not heard of drive-through penalties?

          There are some things WEC gets right. There are some things F1 gets right. Both could learn from the other.

      2. Even Spa has succumbed to the acres of tarmac run off recently (Bus Stop, Les Combes). Every time a driver spins off or makes a mistake which would have punished them 15 years ago, but then rejoins a few seconds later due to the run off, I sigh a little.

        1. As long as it is a few seconds later i’m ok with it, the one I can’t stand is the cross runoff shortcut taken flat out.

        2. @dryyoshi Remember that on these tracks not only F1 races are held but also for example low level track days on which is it very handy for the marshals if they don’t have to pull out a car out of the gravel every two minutes and red flag the entire track.

          1. Indeed. And tarmac is much safer for Motorbikes – hence the Parabolica changes last year. There’s always gonna be pros and cons – the pros being safety!

        3. They all should use those blocks we see in Monza :)

          1. If you mean the temporary chicane’s at T1, it’s because that is part of an alternate track layout.

      3. The Malaysian GP was made far more exciting because of the Sauber getting beached! I certainly believe that the safety car disrupted the race enough to throw off Mercedes’ strategy. Had the Sauber gone off then come back on we would have had a very boring race and another Mercedes win.
        I cannot stand tarmac runoff. Drivers need to be punished for going off track. I personally believe that all four wheels should stay between the white lines, and if you they go over the white lines a certain number of times in a race, they should get a time penalty added on to their overall race time. I am sick and tired of seeing them drive over curbs (that cannot be good for the tires or the car), it may save them a few tenths of a second per lap, but the curbs are on the wrong side of the white line!
        That is my rant for the day. It is late where I am so I apologize for any spelling and grammar mistakes.

        1. the curbs are on the wrong side of the white line!

          @irejag I don’t agree with you there, but I see your point. The whole idea of kerb stones is that if you run out of road, there is a small strip of kerbs to prevent you from running into something really bad. Nowadays, the role of tarmac has been taken over by kerb stones, while the role of the kerbs is fulfilled by astroturf; which is annoying.

          In my opinion, the situation would be improved if kerb stones stopped being so wide. Abu Dhabi especially really overdid it with their kerb stones: their kerb stones are wider than a Formula 1 car, which leads to ridiculous arguments like ‘if a driver runs over the kerbs with all four wheels, did he leave the track and gain an advantage?’ Kerb stones should be something like 30cm wide, wide enough to give drivers the confidence to accelerate out of a corner without being afraid to run out of road, but narrow enough to keep the ‘ideal line’ through a corner the same as if there weren’t kerb stones.

      4. I still believe this could be dealt with electronically. Leave the tarmac run off, but had a device which seriously limits power when you leave the track. And/or modify the rules so that you will get an automatic 5s penalty for leaving the track, which can be appealed if it is clear you were disadvantaged (reverse the rule so it’s not that you must not gain advantage, but that you must be disadvantaged).

      5. @strontium – I’d arrange for the situation where all four wheels are off the road to lead to a significant loss of electrical power from the ERS. Nice, simple penalty with some strategic possibilities but no beached vehicles or safety cars required. No recovery vehicles either.

        1. Having gravel in Japan could have slowed Bianchi down. People keep saying that tarmac runoff is safer, but I don’t see that.
          If a driver for some reason loses control or cannot brake, at least gravel gives the wheels something to dig into and force the car to slow down, but tarmac will just guide the car into the wall at high speeds.

      6. I disagree – most if not all of the worst accidents in F1 in the past decade happened on tracks with little to no run-off area. And tracks need to host more than just F1 races and its support program to be sustainable so the safety-concerns are also broader.
        Constantly abusing track limits is a problem but it’s not solved by compromising safety but by finding other solutions to punish drivers.

        1. @tmf42 I agree that a substantial amount of runoff is needed, but in China there is far too much. Canada, Singapore, and Monaco are, of course, at the complete opposite end of this spectrum, but the amount at China is ridiculous. Spa, Hockenheim, etc. seem to have a decent amount without being excessive or dangerous.

      7. @strontium

        couldn’t agree with you more, but all the new tracks are no different, this is the new era of “safety” and tilka design. Have a look at the US track, same crap, run off everywhere.

        Traps separated the greats from the average, the average got stuck in the traps and their race was done, today the average are finishing more races cause of the help they are getting from the new designed tracks.

        so now the average, knowing very well that if they make a mistake, they can just get back on the track and continue, so less pressure to be perfect as they drive the cars on the edge.

        so yeah, I don’t like them, not what I call a “pinnicale” of motorsports.

      8. I think safety is more important than the aesthetics of a perfect corner. Having ample run off area doesn’t stop TV cameras from getting good pictures of the cars going around the corner, nor does it stop vehicle on vehicle collisions, but distance does make a difference when you’re trying to slow down any vehicle.

    2. Are you listening Bernie?

      Bernie talks, it is for others to listen.
      Or, no, never have,never will.

    3. WEC vs F1 !
      Couldn’t agree more with the motorsport article, other than a reservation about having 2 classes with vastly different speeds on the track at the same time, I was particularly heartened to have 2 of my pet philosophies reinforced;
      1 being that the rules of F1 design are so complete and proscriptive that there is very little room for variation or inspiration, which I believe has the opposite effect to that intended, that is it makes winning F1 cars more expensive not less due to the minute gains made from vast expenditure.
      2 being that cars with totally different designs andPUs can have different strengths and weaknesses but still have very similar times around a varied racetrack.
      Once I get a solid broadband connection and connect it to a bigscreen TV I am pretty sure WEC is going to be my favourite 4 wheeled motorsport.

      1. Keith Crossley
        14th April 2015, 1:11

        Don’t want to be a grammar scold, but I think this is the important point you were making – the current rules are PRESCRIPTIVE – “here’s what you must do” more than “proscriptive” (what you can’t do). And that’s the point I think that HoHum was making.

        Hope I got the grammar right! :-)

        1. Yes, on reflection you are dead right, all that stuff that you must do (front-rear balance etc.) leaves very little room for things you can’t do, and that is exactly the point I was referencing. Thanks, anytime.

      2. ColdFly F1 (@)
        14th April 2015, 1:47

        WEC vs F1 is like a Test Match vs 20/20 in cricket (softball with 2 bases!). @hohum

        WEC is the pure form of the sport, but takes a bit long. Whereas F1 has the pace but feels a bit gimmicky with too much focus on artificial rule changes.
        I wonder if there is something like a 1DI?

        1. @coldfly, good point, see below.

        2. @coldfly

          Endurance racing is (too) long.

          That’s why they call it endurance. It wouldn’t really be the Endurance championship if they did two hour races on seven tracks would it? That’s barely anything longer than a GP…

          ELMS is a fine four hours, BlancPain has races for several timetables and the WORLD ENDURANCE CHAMPIONSHIP has to top them all by having all races six hours. If only the 12h of Bathurs and Sebring belonged to the calender.

          There is of course also the 24h series but I don’t think that is a world championship.

          1. ColdFly F1 (@)
            14th April 2015, 10:48

            @xtwl, I know what endurance means, and a bit cheeky to change a quote! You seem to have missed my point of comparing car racing to cricket.

            1. @coldfly Yeah, cricket is not really my sport.

      3. This is how i see it. A F1 engine will be able to do a six our race, so they should be able to take part in a WEC race with out braking down. The reason i get to this conclusion is that a F1 engine has to be use on ave. for 5 race in a season. If the WEC could could only manages to qualify in the middle field of last years F1 cars then what will F1 cars of this year do to them in a race. People WEC is still far behind F1 cars when it comes to preformens. What a lot of ppl for get is because the smaller teams have there own championship the bigger teams have more freedom to do what they want, but when Bernie said he wanted to do the same ever one said he is crazy. WEC is a Championship with cars that have only 10 cars in there top championship where as F1 has 20 cars. A F1 car can win a WEC race but a WEC car can not win a F1 race. So please stop trying to compare F1 to WEC it is to differed championships. But if you want to compare it compare all of it and not only the parts you enjoy. I truly believe for the casual person how only wants to sit down on a Sunday and enjoy some motor sport WEC is the better one. But for the person how wants to know about every part of the sport how understand that there goes more into the race on a Sunday then the race it self F1 is the better one.

      4. @hohum – In addition to design variation, the LMP1 cars have vastly more pronounced strengths and weaknesses than in F1. In 2014 for example, Porsche was often on pole, but won just one race, and whilst Audi’s stint averages were often formidable, it was Toyota’s ability to double stint the tyres that duly won them the title. In 2015, however, they appear to have the slowest package in P1 H. Design variance in this case has bred sporting variance, and bred profound unpredictability.

        1. And that’s racing.

    4. While I agree on every point made by the motorsport article, I still can’t watch WEC on principle. It can be the single best category regarding technology, driving skill, entertainment value, and everything else everybody praises it for – there’s still absolutely no way I’ll sit through six hours (or more) of anything. I could always watch the highlights, but by then it kind of loses the fun of it.

      1. A good point, I wish they ran an alternate 2hr. race series as well, without allowing the cars to specialise in the sprint races.

      2. Neil (@neilosjames)
        14th April 2015, 2:17

        I have the same problem… and I don’t see the point in watching only a part of the race.

        But if I had a load of racing nut friends and we could have WEC parties, with all the usual house party stuff and the race on TV in the background… it’d be different.

      3. @reiter, I agree, and even the article makes that point. Dogs go unwalked and children must be shooed away in order to watch it. We don’t have a dog, but unless my wife takes the children out for a day I won’t be sitting down for 6 hours of television on Sunday (and of course, I can’t actually watch WEC on TV in the Netherlands as far as I know).

        For F1 I always try to watch it live (I don’t always succeed, and I often have to miss qualifying), and I can watch some Indycar because it’s in the evening, but that’s about it for my live motorsport intake.

      4. @reiter – Two hours of MOTORS TV highlights?

      5. @reiter I made a similar comment below.

        Personally, I’d rather watch DTM than WEC. Too long for me, sorry.

      6. Agree with this…

    5. I pray for Jules, but the realist in me thinks he will sadly never wake up although I’d love to be proven wrong and hope Jules wakes up for his fans, friends, and most importantly, family.

      Marussia had aweful luck, causing Maria De Villota to lose an eye – leading to her sad demise and they also provided the car that leaded to the highly rated Bianchi’s freak, unusual accident.

      With Schumi’s ski accident in 2013,the f1 community has seen a very sad loss of life in the past few years. I only started watching F1 in 2011 and was wondering if there have been other deaths, never ending comas or persistent vegetive states in recent years that have not been reported as a death did not actually occur on track?

      1. nice post.

        we’re all wishing him and his family the very best wishes.

      2. No there has not been any other F1 drivers in this kind of life/death situation since Senna. Of course there has been past F1 drivers that have died since then but nothing like Jules and Schumi.

        Re: Schumi, he is not dead – you are talking like he is! The truth is no-one really knows how he is or if he is making any significant progress because the Schumi family has not said a word since it happened really. We cannot believe the rumours that come out.

        It is nice that the Bianchi family is keeping us updated even if no news as they said they would. If Jules does wake up he will have a very long recovery indeed and will probably never be the same again.

        1. Not true. Karl Wendlinger spent several weeks in a coma after Monaco 94. Mika Häkkinen was also in a coma for weeks after Adelaide 95.

          1. @maxthecat Yes but the guy asked if there had been any other never ending comas, persistent vegetative states etc. Obviously they were both fine and recovered from their comas relatively quickly.

    6. The thing I’ve struggled with getting into WEC (other than coverage, what channel is it even on?) is the length of the race.

      F1 is easy, you sit and watch an hour or so if qualifying on Saturday, and a couple of hours racing on Sunday. During that time I’m parked in front of my TV or computer and I don’t move even for the toilet, food or drink and the phone gets ignored. Maybe some instant messaging with my fellow nerds. I follow every overtake, pitstop and tyre stint. I know what’s happening and how the story is unfolding.

      But a 6, 10 or 24 hour race? It’s obviously not possible to sit solidly. So what’s the optimal method of following it? Do people just watch the start and the end and risk missing any mid race action?

      1. I’ve been to Le Mans a few times and stayed awake for the entire race, with a few short cat-naps during the night. I’ve also watched Le Mans on Eurosport for the last few years, again staying awake for the entire race. It’s a bit more comfortable at home with soft chairs to relax in but a lot more exciting to be at the track.

      2. I was asking similar questions regarding baseball when I moved to North America. After watching a few games and analyzing them, I concluded that most of the time the leading action is spitting and rearranging one’s balls. My American and Canadian friends told me that they just let it play in the background and do something else. Every time they hear the commentator getting excited, they turn to their TV set and watch the replays.

        1. The same comment should be made about “american football”, those things takes hours and hours…

      3. Well the bonus of a 6 hour race is that if you’re at the track you can afford to have a wander around without feeling you’re going to miss something. That’s also something you can do with sprint series with several races per day like BTCC, probably not so much with an F1 race.

        I do struggle to keep invested when watching at home though, I haven’t found a good way to watch the 6 hour races yet. Le Mans is different because it’s quite easy to check up, maybe watch an hour here and there when it’s exciting and there’s usually tons of information and replays around on the ‘net to catch up with anything you missed.

    7. Would like to nominate David Coulthard and Jonny Herbert to head up the F1 Silly Commenting Society.
      There are a few others who could be charter members.

    8. ColdFly F1 (@)
      14th April 2015, 1:42

      Boulier

      we can still get out of this engine so already from Bahrain we can power up a little bit the power unit. In Barcelona then we have another spec coming,

      Sounds like more tokens for McHonda from Barcelona.
      I remain optimistic. We should have a poll where we expect them to be during the races at the end of the season (fighting for Q2, points, podiums, or wins?).

      1. @coldfly – that would be fun

        My vote is knocking on the door of the top three teams but not quite getting there.

      2. @coldfly – Optimistic for the Honda here too. While it has been a more difficult start to the season (and preseason) than what McLaren/Honda may have expected, it seems fairly obvious it was never going to be easy. Many are quick to call the project results rubbish, but a better measure will be where they are at the end of the season. People may be surprised.

      3. Could just be a software tweak. The new spec engine is probably where the token development is being spent.

        As for end of season, I really expect them to be fighting for podiums. I mean, look at the way Button’s car dodged from side to side before smacking Maldonado right up the diffuser! Saw Maldonado running through the pitlane, and wondered if he’d just taken a drive-through out of habit after a collision……

        1. Saw Maldonado running through the pitlane, and wondered if he’d just taken a drive-through out of habit after a collision……

          LOL, good one. Was wondering what he was doing too. I suppose the maybe the team was taking a look-see or something.

        2. ColdFly F1 (@)
          14th April 2015, 2:24

          grat – If only we had a JOTD – you would have won hands down.

      4. @coldfly

        Yeah it would make for an interesting poll. I think Keith had included it in his pre season poll, but it would be good to get another one 3 races down.

        I personally believe they will end the year with a package that can compete with the slowest 2 teams on the grid other than Manor. It might be FI or Sauber that are the slowest 2 teams by the end of the year, so I expect Nando and Jenson fighting for the last few points finishes.They should be making Q2 appearances more regularly.

        I still think they will be over 2 seconds down on quali pace and at least 1 to 1.5s down on race pace compared to Mercedes by the end of the year. Personally, I don’t expect them to turn things around, and I expect them to start 2016 with a car that is no more than the 5th fastest car on the grid.

      5. Was McLaren forced to return all their last years PUs to Mercedes?

        1. ColdFly F1 (@)
          14th April 2015, 10:14

          yes – I read that somewhere!

          1. That explains Honda’s issues… :)

      6. @coldfly – Am I right in saying they can replace parts in the engine in the name of reliability without using tokens?

        If so, I doubt they’ve used any tokens yet. Their Barcelona spec will likely be more of an upgrade. Sounds promising that they are still turning the engine up more and more at each race and aren’t a million miles off the pace already.

        1. ColdFly F1 (@)
          14th April 2015, 12:57

          @petebaldwin good point – that would be a smart move given the 50% DNF rate.

      7. @coldfly Optimistic here too. So far, the progress was there, as announced. Q2 and points seem really reasonable, I am hoping for podiums but I expect Red Bull to become stronger for the second half of the season, the podium will probably be hard to reach.

      8. I’d say:
        By Austria they should be regular Q2 entrants and possibly bag their first points.
        By Brazil they should have both cars in Q3 fairly regularly, points contenders on a regular basis and have the odd sniff at a podium, which would be one of the turnaround stories of a season.

    9. Does anyone know if Manor sell any official merchandise? I’d love to help that team and it seems like the best way.

      … and yes I know at the end of last year there was a lot of official Marussia ‘merchandise’ for sale ;)

      1. I have seem some reports that they are planning on doing a new livery once they get to Europe (possibly with getting sponsorship for Mehri?), so its possible they are waiting for that before they bring out merchandize

    10. I watched a little bit of the WEC this weekend and I must admit, it’s very impressive to see the cars being flung around the track. I seriously underestimated how fun they are to watch. However, the big problem is, and I’m sure a lot of F1 fans feel the same way, I can’t watch the TV for 10 hours, even if it is off and on (I’ll make an exception for Bathurst). This is why I think it’s difficult to compare WEC and F1. Apples and oranges in my opinion.

      I can’t see the average Formula 1 fan seriously making the jump from F1 to WEC. F1 is packaged nicely into 2 hours on a Sunday and that’s why most people won’t convert and why I think the comparisons are only semi relevant. Unfortunately, I’m sure FOM are aware of this and is one reason why they think it’s OK to ignore the fans.

      1. What fans are these calling for F1 races to be longer and being ignored? Races are just fine as they are, allowing people to watch quali, race build up and race whilst still doing all the things at the weekend that need doing unless you have a butler or don’t work in the week.

        I remember Flavio once calling for F1 races to be significantly shortened and the unified response on this site and others. Perhaps they did listen to the fans that time.

        1. You missed the point. What I’m saying is, from a business point of view, WEC isn’t a direct substitute product. Therefore, consumers won’t move to the other product and so Bernie can basically treat F1 as a monopoly and do as he pleases.

          1. Ah ok @jarnooo , got the wrong end of the stick there. You’re right of course. I guess A1 was the last competitor to F1 and that didn’t work out too well. Breakaway is the only way :)

      2. @jarnooo – I agree, but that doesn’t mean F1 can’t learn lessons from the WEC, such the importance of racing purity and the advantages of avoiding a spec series. And is it not inevitable, with F1-grade technology and F1-grade driving talent, that the pull of the WEC will become too great for some of F1’s more emphatic fans?

        1. @countrygent
          Hardcore fans like myself I don’t think will budge too easily from F1. Surely some fans less invested in the sport will move to WEC. However, I think the reputation F1 has as the ‘pinnacle of motorsport’, the strong connections fans like myself have to the sport and like what I said with the length of the races, I don’t think F1 is in danger of losing many fans in the near future.

          You are right though, as long as F1 continues to alienate fans and only take care of their own interests, it is inevitable that fans will ditch F1. Heck I’d boycott the sport if I didn’t enjoy it so much lol.

    11. PS. Watched the Shanghai highlights last nite, vastly better than the Sepang version, it seems that they actually made an effort to edit the show and taking a lesson from MotoGP showed us the battles rather than focusing endlessly on the untroubled leader. The back end of the field was very entertaining, who’d a thunk it.?

      1. If this is the BBC edit you are talking about I can’t agree and actually feel privileged to be able have access to the Sky feed after watching that mashup. In their defence, there really wasn’t that much to highlight and the full race was probably less entertaining.

      2. The feeld hardly ever gave us a view of Hamilton up front for the live footage too @hohum, I think I saw him at the start, and then shortly around pitstops before panning to him crossing the finish line. In between we got a lot of Verstappen, Ricciardo, Ericsson, the McLarens and FIs dicing on track and the occasional view of Rosberg or Vettel.

        1. @bascb , @hohum – It was almost as if Bernie directed the director to not show Mercedes as much as possible. You know, because they’re killing F1.

          There were some rather entertaining midfield and backfield moments in the race. I think Ricciardo passed Ericsson at least 10 times.

          1. @bascb,@bullmello, That explains it then, what I saw was just a condensed version of what you describe.

    12. I really don’t see the point in that ESPN article on Kimi. The Iceman has a soft side and he needs the team to be behind him. News Flash – Kimi is human and doesn’t work on his own car! Thanks for the insight Arrivabene.

      That photo of him in the Tweet from @bgarloff made me chuckle. No bling required :P

      1. To me the real point is that Ferrari seems to be embracing having TWO competative drivers instead of treating one of them as a no.2 @funkyf1.

        Yeah, Kimi needs to feel the team is behind him too, more or less just like any other driver I know of, that is not a big surprise, although some act as if Kimi has no such feelings, it was pretty clear to see at Lotus too, the moment he stopt feeling loved and wanted his performance dwindled.

      2. @funkyf1 – if that picture of Kimi was in a caption competition I fear there would be a lot of breastfeeding jokes – “He’s that talented.”

        1. @tribaltalker There’s an ice cream behind that magazine

          1. or maybe an iced vodka @funkyf1?

    13. So UBS dropped their sponsorship of the ChinaGP, and after Bernie personally endorsed them, I wonder why?

    14. “The new news in Ferrari is that we have a team now with two very good drivers.” -Arrivabene

      Ummm what? Somehow replacing Alonso with Vettel has made Kimi a better driver all of a sudden? Add to that I doubt he will get the support he wants from the team, Vettel’s radio messages alone show just how much he loves the team, and no doubt that kind of passion draws the support of everyone.

      I hope Ferrari look to replace Kimi with an upcoming talent (Verstappen would be a dream if RBR do withdraw) that can really push Vettel and I just doubt highly that Kimi is up to the task.

      1. Too early to tell if Max has the raw pace to match Vettel.

        I’d like to see Ricciardo in Ferrari.. I’m sure that would put a smile on Seb’s face

      2. It might have made Kimi a better driver to be really treaded as a pro driver instead of as the second driver @skipgamer.

    15. I pray for Bianchi’s full recovery. His parents must be so devastated. .please wake up Jules.

      1. It would be the best news of the year if this happened! Alongside the resurrection of his team. It would be great if he recovered, that the team took him in to a management position – like chief media spokesman.

        Something to hope for :)

    16. Many thanks @keithcollantine for my third COTD!

      1. @countrygent You’re welcome… ;)

    17. WEC is great for constructors because they have more freedom to try new things and take it to their road-car business, the philosophy (IMHO) is a bit different.

      Despite being under constant criticism (rightly) F1 is still the top series and there’s no reason to fear being dethroned by other series, particularly WEC. Apart from lack of competition at the front, one of the weakest points of current F1 is its poor “new media” coverage, it’s a relevant issue because modern F1 has been designed to be a platform to advertise products and services so plummeting TV ratings could be offset by social media alternatives.

      F1 can do more without any major format shake-up to spark interest of race-goers and TV viewers, but WEC? It would take a effort to make a 6-hours race a major TV event.

      I love rally and I was used to be crazy for Dakar (until they moved to South America and I proudly boycott them every year) but for TV, Dakar is nothing but a highlights event because following a stage from start to finish is almost impossible and WEC is not different in that regard; you will find people in front of TV for 6 consecutives hours like those cycling fanatics who follow a complete Tour de France stage on their sofas but how many?

      F1 needs to be fixed but transform itself into a extremely flexible formula doesn’t look like the solution, for that we have WEC.

      1. I strongly agree with you on the point of F1 with regards to the “new media”.
        A quick search on google turned up a couple of pretty well known facts, companies are decreasing their spending in traditional media (think print) and are increasing in digital marketing, and social marketing.

        When F1, then does not allow post youtube clips for example, they are loosing many viewers of brands, and therefore possibly many attractive sponsors.

        “28% of marketers have reduced their advertising budget to fund more digital marketing. February 2015”

        “Worldwide social network ad spending reached $16.10 billion in 2014, a 45.3% increase from 2013 that pushed social’s share of overall digital ad investment to 11.5%. Combined social network ad dollars from North America, Western Europe and Asia-Pacific represented 93.7% of global expenditure. January 2015”
        Source: https://www.cmocouncil.org/facts-stats-categories.php?view=all&category=marketing-spend

    18. What is the deal with the camera angles in F1? I watched the MotoGp race this weekend and I was completely drawn into it simply in terms of the beauty of it. I felt like I was there. I could sense the speed and power. The super slow mo of the bikes very subtly moving around. Do the smaller more colorful bikes just fit and look better on tv better? Maybe I am just tired of F1, but the races haven’t seemed spectacular from a filming, watching on tv perspective since maybe the ’91 US Grand Prix or maybe that camera near the swimming pool section at Monaco a few years ago.

      1. @darryn
        With the exception of the F1 Digital era, F1 has always been slow to adapt to new broadcasting technology.
        It took FOM years to make the switch to widescreen and HD, we’ll probably be waiting another decade for them to introduce high speed cameras like we get in motoGP, and it’s unlikely we’ll ever see the variety of in car cameras we get in other series.
        Some of this is because of the teams, they don’t want others to see too much of their dash read-outs or how certain parts of the cars are working on the track. The rest is probably due to the people running FOM being too old, insular and out of touch with the rest of the world.
        MotoGP is possibly the best presented motorsport on TV, they’re always trying new ideas to make the sport appear more exciting.

      2. Even simple static cameras are better than most F1 coverage. Unfortunately FOM don’t seem to agree or have forgotten.

        I think in early 2000s there was a period of static cameras on bridges that would switch after the cars went under the bridge. One of the best conveyors of speed but no, we still have lenses panning with the cars all the time.

      3. thank dorma and blame fom

    19. You’d have thought the author of that WEC/F1 comparison piece might have remembered that last year’s Silverstone qualifying was on a damp track, given that the weather conditions produced a rather famous Q3 result…

    20. As others have said the length of WEC races & endurance racing in general removes a lot of the interest for me as I don’t really have time to dedicate to watching a 6/12/24hr race.
      I did used to watch the ALMS occasionally, They were 2hr:45m which was a decent length but sadly that series went downhill when all the P1 teams pulled out & the new ‘merged’ USCC series is a bit of a joke with some of the nascar-esq use of cautions & other decision making.

      I think the longer duration of endurance racing will always pose a problem as it really only appeals to the most dedicated of fans who really understand & have a passion for that sort of racing. I can’t see the more casual of fans been interested in sitting down & watching something they may not totally get for that length of time.

      The other big problem that I’ve always had an issue with with sportscar racing is the BOP (Balance of performance), Seeing rules constantly tweaked to ensure performance equality to artificially try & force close racing & artificially ensure no team has a significant advantage always leaves a really bad taste in my mouth.
      I recall the 24hrs of le mans 10 years ago when Audi were constantly been hit by heavier & heavier restrictions just so the Pescarollo team (There only competition at the time) could get closer.

      And the final thing whihc is something i seriously detest about it is that they still have driver aids such as traction control.

    21. “Our universe collapsed on 5 October 2014.”
      “I think that in this type of accident it shocks more than an actual death. The pain is endless – a daily torture.”

      Those poor people – their agony is heartbreaking.
      I still can’t believe such an avoidable tragedy was allowed to occur and I have found my trust and confidence in Charlie Whiting has not returned. Jules’ family have to live with the results forever and I find it really horrible that there was never any acknowledgement from anyone in the FIA that they played a role in the accident. Some changes have been made thankfully but too late IMO.
      Also, did anyone notice that Lewis Hamilton set two or maybe three fastest laps when there was a yellow flag in (I think it was) sector two? how could he be going slow in the yellow sector but still set a fastest lap?

      1. Well said @arki19

        Something that was so obvious to Martin Brundle at that moment in time when something could have been done to prevent it, yet so oblivious to Charlie Whiting in race control is tragic. This type of situation was oft repeated by Brundle as well, not just the one time.

        My heart and prayers continue to go out for Jules and his family. As a fan I miss him terribly. I can only imagine how his loved ones feel.

    22. Unfortunately BE et al has already turned F1 into an endurance event. It should be a sprint and be quite different from WEC. But the point of COTD is that BE could learn some things from it.

      1) F1 has retained it’s traditional method of race starts, but it definitely has wavered in terms of purity of spectacle. Again, it’s no longer a sprint…it’s a systems monitoring event…an exercise in tire management above all else, to the point where drivers dare not race for fear of ruining their tires prematurely and losing out in the end.

      2) Homologation of engines may be rethought before long if Mercedes continues with their 1-2’s, and homologation of design has had the intention of keeping the top money teams from always being the top teams simply due to the size of their wallets. They just voted down renewed talk of banning wind tunnels, so their addiction to downforce remains, as well as their addiction to outspending their opponents to the top without real concern for the state of the sport. Perhaps F1 needs to forgo concern over smaller teams and let the money teams be F1, perhaps with 3 car teams to make up the grid, if it can’t manage to be non-spec while keeping expenditures reasonable.

      3) I’ve never thought WEC wasn’t full of highly capable drivers. The list of iconic names that have graced the WEC entry lists is staggering, and is why many ex-F1 drivers have gone there. There’s only so many seats in F1.

      I’d watch more WEC if they aired the races here in Canada, or of I had better high-speed, being out in the country, and I did enjoy it when the US’s Speed TV covered it, but they’re no longer. Canada continues to make F1 a priority and to my knowledge has never tried to air WEC, other than by airing the US coverage up until a few years ago.

      I’m sure it is true that BE could learn some things from WEC, and I’m sure WEC has it’s issues too, but for me, as especially highlighted by this
      last F1 race, it needs to get back to a sprint that is a race, not a two-hour exercise in obsessive tire management that has drivers afraid to race.

      1. @robbie Just regarding your 1st point, F1 has never really been a sprint, Drivers have always had to drive within the limits of some aspect of the car.
        Jackie Stewart once said that the object of F1 was to win the race at the slowest possible speed.

        In the days when the cars were less reliable the drivers were always having to drive while managing engine, gearbox, clutch, brakes etc..
        In the days when pit stops took 30+ seconds drivers would also have to manage the tyres & with no refueling there would also be some fuel management.

        In the 80s with the turbo’s you also had a lot of car, tyre & especially fuel management so again in that era it wasn’t a sprint. Same was true in the early 90s, Especially when you had a lot more tyre strategy with some drivers running non-stop trying to manage there tyres.

        Even in the refueling era not every race was a sprint which is why the few races that were (Suzuka 2000, Hungary 1998 for instance) are remembered above the others because that sort of flat out sprint was not the norm.

        Those who say that F1 was a flat out sprint in the past are simply repeating a myth because F1 has never been that & likely never will be.

    23. Kimi is a joke. The so called iceman has to be treated with kid gloves because his feelings may get hurt and he won’t feel like he’s part of the Ferrari family. You’d think the 10 million he’s getting paid would soothe his pain. Send him packing.

    24. Somehow I think in the near future clowns like Coulthard, Villeneuve Lauda and many others will be kissing Alonso’s @$$ again. As John Lennon wrote “nobody loves you when you’re down and out.”

      1. Could be even worse, as in the lament from the 1923 blues song by Jimmy Cox – “Nobody Knows You When You’re Down And Out”. At least they are still talking about Alonso. :)

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