More F1 drivers will switch to WEC – Webber

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In the round-up: Mark Webber says more Formula One drivers will switch to the World Endurance Championship because the cars are more rewarding to drive.


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

'I chose the right time' for career transition, Webber says (Racer)

"My guess is you’ll see more (F1) drivers look this way because sports cars have a lot to offer."

Are Porsche set to capitalise on FIA wrangling and enter the world of F1? (The Guardian)

"Perhaps, as F1’s background wrangling continues, it is their intention to be on the grid for real in 2017 that lies behind the FIA’s new team prospectus."

Sauber not expecting engine updates until Spa (NBC)

"Ferrari is getting a new update on the engine but we are not getting it here. Probably we will get it at Spa."

Honda upgrade not for performance, says Alonso (Crash)

"The engine is exactly the same this weekend compared to Monaco. We did use two tokens of the nine, but they are more for reliability reasons and some of the problems we faced recently."

Button warns Verstappen over remarks (Autosport)

"To point the finger at someone and say that they braketested you, that's serious. I don't think that happens in motorsport these days, we're all grown-ups and we don't do things like that in Formula 1."

Grosjean hits out at unrepentant Verstappen (Motorsport)

"He has made a mistake and I just find it a bit disappointing that he doesn't learn from it."

Button fears McLaren axe (The Sun - subscription required)

"McLaren are already planning for next season and are looking at a change to their driver pairing."

McLaren scoff at reports Jenson Button's future is in doubt (Sky)

"The claim has been dismissed as ‘tittle-tattle’ by a team insider, with the prospect of Button being jettisoned at the end of a campaign likely to have been greeted with incredulity by the team’s supporters given the extent of McLaren’s struggles since reuniting with Honda at the start of 2015."

How to run Formula 1 (Motorsport magazine)

"Under Ecclestone, FOM has been an austere organisation accused of being increasingly out of touch. It’s remained largely analogue in a digital era, if you like, and many a sponsor or switched-on marketeer has been frustrated by the cast-iron constraints within which they must work."

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Comment of the day

Max Verstappen’s handling of his Monaco crash has been a turning point for some:

I had been really impressed by Verstappen’s maturity and talent up until that incident in Monaco. Since then, Verstappen’s attitude over the whole thing has been awful and reminds me of Hamilton’s mentality back in 2011.

Instead of holding his hands up and saying he’ll learn from it, Verstappen has criticised Grosjean despite him doing nothing wrong, and then criticised Massa over an incident which happened a year ago which he was found to have done nothing wrong either.
Craig Woollard (@Craig-o)

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On this day in F1

Juan Manuel Fangio led a Mercedes one-two in the Belgian Grand Prix 60 years ago today, with Stirling Moss second.

In third place was Giuseppe Farina,the sport’s first world championship, in his final race.

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116 comments on “More F1 drivers will switch to WEC – Webber”

  1. Can somebody explain this to me because I think I’m missing something.

    Ferrari already took their second PU before Canada, so are they going to be taking a third PU now? and then will use the “old” engine down the line at tracks where power isn’t as important as say it is in Canada, Spa & Monza?

    So the chart will read they have used 3 but in reality then will have used the second only once?

    1. If they use a 3rd PU and if that unit consists of changes whereby tokens were used, then going forward, they won’t be able to use their 2nd PU. So that would leave them with only 2 PU to use until the end of the season

    2. Also something that I noticed which is interesting is that Sauber aren’t getting the new updated engine, so unless they have an internal plan that means they don’t want the new engine it would suggest that Ferrari isn’t offering them the upgrade at the moment. This compares to Mercedes who give all their customer team the same engine as they do, Lotus confirmed this is in their contract, same with Williams and Force India recently confirmed Merecedes have been “good” in that respect. Software setup might be slightly different and Williams run their own gearbox but the PU is the same.

      I wonder why (if it is the case) Ferrari are keeping the upgrades simply to the works team, Just a thought but although it’s been rumored for a long time maybe the upgrade they have brought to Canada, isn’t the one they were planning and they didn’t have time to produce enough upgraded engines for both the works team and it’s customer team (team, as Manor aren’t using 2015 engines yet I don’t believe.)

      1. You misunderstood. Sauber is getting the same PU. It’s just that they don’t want to use the third one in Canada.

        1. I’ve just read an article with abit more information in and Kaltenborn says pretty much that, although given that points are that important thing for Sauber one would think that they might like to take advantage of the current competitors having not spent engines tokens and see if they grab a few extra points which may not be available later on in the season.

      2. I don’t know but hazarding a guess, it might have something to do with payments not up to date ( always pay the lawyers 1st. ).

      3. I think that isn’t the case at all. In my opinion, why would Sauber risk reliability and lose money which they clearly don’t have enough nowadays, to update for a new PU with just 3 tokens different?! The news out there are that Ferrari will gain more performance (15 to 20hp), but with a combination of PU+fuel+new software. So, for a big team, like Ferrari with different objectives, yes they can take that risk… specially with the Constructor’s Championship as it is right now. But Sauber is in a completely different league and they only get the new PU. Maybe it’s better to wait for the other upgrade arriving in time for Monza supposedly.

        1. So your saying, why should they take the risk on a new upgraded PU, that has more power and offer them the opportunity to score more points?

          Why should they wait until Monza and lose the chance to score more points in the races leading up to then? Sorry, but your reasoning makes no sense at all.

          1. It could make sense if you read it. It can be a risk because it’s Sauber only gets the new PU, not the rest. So the upgrade in performance (with just 3 tokens) can be much lower than what Ferrari gains with the triple combination. But hey, it’s just a guess and my opinion. Everyone has it’s on.

      4. The simple answer to that is…

        It depends on what’s in the contract. The only Saubee won’t get at the same time, is probably software updates, but they will get all available hardware updates as soon as Ferrari make them available.

        If Ferrari bring an updated PU, then it would be extremely silly of them not to take it, especially if it gives them a chance to score more points and improve their standings in the championship.

      5. I am pretty sure that the rules include the obligation to deliver the SAME spec to all customers (i doubt money comes into it), but it might have more to do with when a team actually takes a new engine, based on useage in reality. @key75, @hohum, @woodied91

        off course its quite possible that Ferrari haven’t managed to get enough updated units built to offer them to their customer (as far as I know, Manor is indeed still using the 2014 spec engine, because they would have to change too much on the “interim” car to fit a 2015 unit)

        1. Ferrari have to provide equal engines to all customers (except for Manor as they already have a special arrangement separately blessed by the FIA)… …but nothing in the rules requires customer teams to upgrade until they want to, or until the beginning of the following season.

          1. +1! Thanks.
            It can be a lot of different reasons behind Sauber not using the new PU right now. But it isn’t Ferrari fault. Monisha really says it all in the article!!!

      6. @woodyd91, @key75, I think Sauber would have loved to have the new engine. The rumoured 30HP extra (for instance on JAonF1) could be crucial in Canada, which should present Sauber with their poor-downforce car with one of a few opportunities to score some points.

        I actually thought it was required by regulations that a manufacturer provide its customers with identical engines, but I suppose with in-season upgrades that is difficult to maintain. Instead, I suspect it’s indeed about money, with Sauber having a ‘cheap’ contract or simply being late with their payments, or a question of logistics. If I recall correctly, one of the the objections Mercedes raised to in-season upgrades, was the logistics involved in supplying all three customers teams with new engines. Perhaps it’s similar to a team’s lead driver getting the aero updates on his car first.

        Still, I’m disappointed with Ferrari that they don’t supply Sauber -their only proper customer as Manor is still running the 2014 engine- with their best equipment.

      7. Maybe it has something to do with Sauber not wanting to use a new PU for this weekend!

        1. Ferrari are allowed to use their 2nd PU at other races even if they use a third here. They may use a 4th in Monza then juggle what they have until the end of the year depending what power is needed. The engines are not homologated yet but you cannot change components in a used engine so all engines are free to use.

          1. So? What’s that got to do with what I said? Sauber still don’t have to take the 3rd engine this weekend.

  2. someone should remind Button that even if they’re grown ups, Alonso brake tested some drivers not so long ago…

    1. Or someone should remind Alonso that he is supposed to be a grown up.

    2. It’s actually fun to hear from Button if you remebmer his crash at Monza from his debut season and how he blamed Michael Schumacher for it (packing peloton under safety car) later

    3. When did Alonso do that? Were you talking about Hungary 2006?

    4. I remember this brake test, but that’s 12 years ago.
      Anyway, braketests do happen in F1 (but I don’t think Grosjean braketested Verstappen)

    5. @matiascasali, who did Alonso break test? Are you referring to 2008 with Hamilton?

      A cynic would suggest that Vettel brake tested Alonso at Malaysia in 2013, but Alonso said it was simply bad luck.

      1. @tim-m 2013? That was just pure driver error from Alonso. @matiascasali may be talking about 2003 with Coulthard, or 2006 with Doornbos, which are rather considerably long ago.

        1. @david-a, I just re-watched that 2013 contact with Vettel, and you’re right. He just got too close to Vettel into the turn.

  3. There are many F1 rejects frankly, and I’m not saying they are not deserving seats on F1, but there are only 20 something seats. However number of racing drivers keep growing naturally. So I can say “More drivers will join WEC, Formula E, DTM, IndyCar and so on”.

    1. digitalrurouni
      5th June 2015, 15:56

      Having seen the 6 hours of Silverstone I would say dump F1 and got to WEC had I got the talent of the financial backing to be in that lovely situation. The racing was intense the cars spectacular an the tires were beautiful allowing the drivers to push as hard as they possibly can. Just utterly brilliant. Loved the backmarker overtaking moves as well another factor in to keeping your track position. The Porsche 919 vs Audi R18 duel between Neel Jani and Marcel Fassler will forever be etched in my memory. F1 though I am interested and will continue following it is now my 3rd favorite motorsport. Spots 1 are tied between MotoGP and WEC. WRC is a close second and 3rd is F1. We need more drivers in WEC than F1.

      1. @digitalrurouni, where are the teams magically going to appear from that would allow more drivers to compete in the LMP1 class?

        At the moment we have four manufacturer teams and two privateers, although both of the privateers have been struggling and Kolles’s entry, which was the old Lotus entry, is on a very uncertain financial footing. Normally, each team only runs two cars at most – sometimes the privateers will only run one entry – so realistically the number of seats available in LMP1 is not especially large.

        1. maybe f1 teams would be wise to switch to WEC. Sauber, Lotus and Force India and Redbull. mass exit!

  4. petebaldwin (@)
    5th June 2015, 0:29

    What’s this? Bollards at the final chicane to actually punish drivers for going off the track! They’re finally catching on!

    1. A few posters here, have in the past written that we should stop complaining about things because no-one is going to take any notice, slow though it may be our voices are being heard and small improvements are happening, but F1 management is still a total cluster that is beyond our power to influence anyway other than turning off.

    2. @petebaldwin @hohum To be called “Nico Rosberg Way”? :D

      1. Paul (@frankjaeger)
        5th June 2015, 17:07

        Hahahahahaha @fastiesty

        or ‘Rivals Retreat’

        1. @frankjaeger ‘Fastest lap joker’, designed to appeal to the Mario Kart generation!

    3. Very pleased to see this too. Rosberg’s little short cut last year going unpunished was one of the worst bits of stewarding I have ever seen. The sport made itself look stupid, who cares if it was intentional or not – he gained time by cutting a corner. Let’s hope this revision means the errant driver loses out by several seconds.

  5. Things are getting for Manor, as they just announced a partnership with Airbnb on their Facebook page.

    1. @corix Nice, all that blank space was calling out for a big sponsor logo, and Ovo Energy IMO should have been slapped on it in the meantime.

      1. petebaldwin (@)
        5th June 2015, 10:20

        I’ve wondered for a while why they haven’t made the most of the space on the car – do something for charity as it would build good PR, would guarantee you more TV time and would mean that other paying sponsors would want to be on the car as well.

        1. @petebaldwin True, I can only think they haven’t had the time, spare cash or are keeping it blank to show the sponsorship opportunity.

    2. I think that is only for this weekend though and not a whole season deal. Having said that it’s good news for the team, hopefully many others will follow suit.

  6. Webber: “Nico Hulkenberg comes across and says: ‘I’m pushing, I’m pushing every lap in the Porsche; in Formula 1 it’s more of an endurance nature!’ People don’t want to hear that too often, but it’s the truth.”
    It is really interesting. Look at drivers now managing their tyres, fuel, engine, gearbox and so on in Formula 1. Couple of weeks ago they asked at team principle’s press conference if there was anything F1 can learn from WEC, and one of the guys said it’s already endurance championship. Look at the PUs, they are expected to complete six races!
    F1 is supposed to be on the limit. It is not specifically an endurance championship. Now WEC drivers are pushing each lap unlike F1 drivers. There is something seriously wrong here…

    1. I still believe the WEC are missing out on a big opportunity by not running a series of 2 hour sprint races.

      1. @hohum It’s not a bad idea but that’d kill the whole idea of Endurance Racing, isn’t it?

        1. @neelv27, I see them as complementary activities, not as a substitute.

          1. @hohum, Exactly and hence going into 2 hours sprints would not make sense. Surely, endurance racing is more for the hardcore racing fans who can afford to sit and follow the race for 6 hours. In today’s times, sitting 6 hours in front of TV for a race isn’t viable for all and that’s why people generally catch up on the highlights of it. That’d be the sole reason why WEC can’t pull closer to popularity to F1.

            I rather consider Formula E to have a great future if they go the right way.

            Meanwhile, this might be of interest to you.

            How WEC can grow, if it wants to
            With two rounds of the 2015 World Endurance Championship completed, the series has been receiving more plaudits, comparisons are again being made between it and Formula 1. As Edd Straw said in an editorial on the AUTOSPORT website (£) a few weeks ago, pundits should not use the series as a battering ram to attack Formula 1 with given that the two are distinctly different.

            WEC races are typically six or 24 hours long, whereas a Formula 1 race lasts just under two hours, meaning the latter is much more likely to attract a bigger audience. Also, Formula 1 has the luxury of free-to-air output on BBC and Sky. The endurance series however is on Motors TV with a much lower reach than the remainder of the Sports portfolio, including Sky Sports and BT Sport. The Silverstone round peaked with 24k according to unofficial overnight viewing figures.

            The buzz at the moment for WEC is just within the motor sport circles, at the hardcore level. How can that be changed to bring in a casual audience, whilst not alienating the hardcore audience, if possible? I think it is important to point out that, in the mid to late 2000’s, the last few hours of the 24 Hours of Le Mans were screened live on ITV4, which should happen again. Why the series also doesn’t have a highlights package either is confusing to me. Both of these are easy method of increasing audiences, demand and reach. Yes, it is great to stream live online and the like, but you need to have a good reach on traditional platforms as well, which WEC does not have.

            It could be argued that it would be difficult to package together a six hour race, plus practice and qualifying into a 45 or 90 minute highlights programme (excluding commercials) without completely losing the flow and story of the race, but that doesn’t mean that it shouldn’t be attempted. Elsewhere, in a big story from a broadcasting perspective, all TV cameras will be active for the entire 24 Hours of Le Mans, according to Graham Goodwin, the editor of In previous years, the majority of TV cameras were switched off overnight, with a limited number of cameras running alongside CCTV cameras to pick up any incidents. A lot of action was missed as a result, with incidents and crashes occurring off camera, but it looks like that won’t be the case for this year’s race.

            Source: F1Broadcasting

          2. WEC already does a 52-minute highlights reel of each of its races, and in some countries, broadcasters take the highlights package. It just so happens that the UK (where F1Broadcasting is based) is not one of those countries. Fear not; the highlights videos are also put onto Dailymotion for anyone with an internet connection to see.

        2. @neelv27 It would be just like when Can-Am was making waves in the late 60s, and were actually faster than the F1 cars.

          1. *in the early 70s. So you had the film Le Mans and then 2 hour sprint races with them in the other half of the year.

          2. @neelv27, I can’t see your logic if you do find them complementary, “exactly” as do I, and as @fastiesty points out “sports-racing” cars (although not Le Mans class) have been popular as sprint racers before as have GT, Touring, V8 Supercars etc. been able to mix enduro and sprint racing successfully.

      2. WEC don’t do 2-hour races because that gap is basically filled by various SRO series (Blancpain Sprint, which is generally shorter than 2 hours, and Blancpain Endurance, which is a bit longer) and the American TUSCC series (race lengths all over the place but can be as short as 1 hour 40 minutes). TUSCC is visualised by WEC as one of several “feeder” series to WEC, though in practise they are more complementary to each other than the typical “feeder-to-higher series” set-up such a statement would imply in single-seaters.

      3. @hohum FIA wouldn’t allow WEC to do 2 hour sprint races, they don’t want anything to compete with their flagship championship of F1.

    2. One maybe important thing that might make Hülkenberg go WEC is that he would actually get the wage that´s in his contract, and on time, too. Not sure that has happened to him in F1 after his first season.

      1. I believe even Vettel spoke up about that at some point!

    3. It’s ironic how the cost saving measures are meant to save F1, but they are sort of killing it.

      1. The cost saving measures are meant to save CVC from the teams demanding a fair share of F1s profits.

  7. I can’t wait for 2017 to come around. Relegate WEC to where it should be: AN INSTRUCTORS EXERCISE! They are profiting from the negative wave of press surrounding F1 because most people are ignorant about WEC racing. Most WEC fans know very little technically. The cars look “cool” and that’s all that matters I guess.

    Enough of this false hype about it being a sprint race. It’s endurance racing that lasts forever. But they are on a campaign to label their racing as “sprint” racing and have everyone under the WEC umbrella singing the same tune.

    Fact is when you give fans the opportunity, 9/10 they will complain rather than show their support. Ironically, the same people complaining about F1 watch the grand prix races every weekend and then later watch a 15 min recap of a 12hr race and proclaim its the best ever! LOL!!! I’ve watched a few 5-10 minute race recaps of F1 races and thought they were amazing. But, I watch the full 2hr races so I know those highlight films are not an accurate portray…unfortunately people think WEC racing is just as portrayed in highlights. Sad really…

    1. Most WEC fans know very little technically

      @sudd don’t know why you’re saying that. I think it’s the opposite.

      1. *Sorry meant EoT and BoP.

      2. @fer-no65 Well there’s a whole lot more to know. F1 cars are all the same…

    2. And this is based on… What exactly? You appear to have told fans of WEC what they do, despite not being one yourself. This seems equivalent to the “I don’t know why you enjoy watching cars go round in circles” comments, telling us what we watch, why we watch it and why we are wrong, without giving us a look in.

      I am not saying you are wrong for not liking (all entitled to opinion and such), but because you have watched some of the two hour races (bizzare given they are 6 or 24 hours since the new “hype” has started), doesn’t mean you should generalise a who group of fans based on your experience.

    3. @sudd

      Most WEC fans know very little technically.

      I think you will find that most WEC fans are more hardcore than your average F1 fan.

    4. Or maybe, just maybe, some WEC fans find the fact that 3 utterly different technical ways of getting the same speed from a car have been found in LMP1 (and a 4th method is being attempted), and that even in the much more restrictive GTE, a race rarely goes by without at least one team finding a significant technical improvement (which means the BoP in that class frequently needs adjusting).

      Also, this is the first time I’ve seen anyone describe a WEC car as looking “cool”. Lots of other positive adjectives I’ve seen, but the people whose mindsets think of appearances as cool – i.e. the tastemakers – hasn’t really converged on the series yet.

      F1 is a sprint series being run as if it was meant to be endurance. WEC is an endurance series being run like a sprint series (with respect to the fact it really is 6-24 hours per race). (There are a few other endurance series being run on similar lines that are enjoying similar growth, so it is working; I’m guessing that when @sudd says some people are basing their reactions on highlights of a 12-hour race, he means Sebring…

      Disclaimer: I’ve been watching WEC since its inception, having been introduced properly to sportscars when Giancarlo Fisichella went there in 2010.

      1. I was under the impression that, on the contrary, the Balance of Performance regulations does act to hold back development – John Gaw, the Managing Director for Prodrive and in charge of Aston Martin’s GTE program, has publicly stated that the Balance of Performance regulations limit development work in the GTE class.

    5. @sudd

      As a huge fan of both F1 and endurance racing, and knowing fans of both, I honestly can say that you couldn’t be more wrong if you tried. All of my friends who are WEC fans could tell you the driver line ups of just about every team, tell you what’s unique about each of the prototypes, tell you which of the GT cars are in with the best shout of a class victory, and so on. Whereas I’d have to say that on the whole (present company excluded) F1 fans tend to know very little about the detail of the sport. Even on here where fans are generally more knowledgeable than most, as a fan of over 20 years it’s galling how little people seem to recall about the recent history of the sport when making complaints about The State of Formula One.

      1. I love both so half of me knows technically nothing the other half knows loads.

  8. WEC vs F1. Front runner LMP1 Champions vs The Slowest F1 car on the grid:

    Nuff said!

    1. Nope, too many variables, especially tyrelife.

    2. ColdFly F1 (@)
      5th June 2015, 8:24

      very nice clip/comparison though. thanks @sudd

    3. Incredible difference at cornering speeds!

  9. If what Max is doing is bad, certainly what happened with Sutil and Trulli at Interlagos 2009 (and all that followed) goes beyond the ridiculous.

    Or Massa and Hamilton in 2011. Both experienced drivers, absolutely stubborn on and off track.

    It’s not that bad… Max will learn. He can afford all this.

    1. Massa and Hamilton are not really comparable. Each thought the other was wrong, but neither accused the other of doing what they did out of malice (directly or by implication).

      And yes, the Sutil/Trulli one did go beyond the ridiculous. When the FIA resorts to giving one of the drivers a fine not because of the crash but because of how they behaved afterwards, you know it is beyond ridiculous!

  10. Jealousy is a really ugly thing. Max should have apologized even if he has nothing to apologize just for courtesy. Max should’t apologize because the other drivers had to do the same for the length of their careers whether they were right or wrong. It’s not about Massa not about Button not about Romain. Romain is clueless how can he imply he has learned anything? The only thing Romain learned was to stop being a driver, I’m don’t think I’ll need to recall the lyric words of Senna when I’m stating that Romain stopped being a race driver, his mistakes made Romain in the long term less life threatening dangerous, however this didn’t make him any better. Romain simply doesn’t take the chance, it’s not as if he knows why he did almost kill a couple drivers, he doesn’t know the difference and because of that he doesn’t even try. He has no conscience. I hope Max does not change and I hope people will be able to remove their blinds and realise the Monaco incident was just a normal racing accident. F1 is racing.

    1. Were you watching the races this season?

      1. or in 2013, if there was one driver who could come even close to the red bulls at the end of the season that was Grojean (Japan, US)

        1. @papalotis, On pure speed yes, but how many great overtaking moves has Grosjean really made the last couple of years?

  11. The F1 vs. WEC debate is getting a bit tedious – the two series could not be more different.

    These days, I find that my cup of tea on a given weekend could vary amongst upwards of six different series – and the beauty of the Internet means I can watch them all at will – whenever I want.

    For years and years, I pretty much just had F1 vs. CART to sample here in the U.S. But there have been a few weekends this year where I found WRC, GP2, or even Formula E to be the best entertainment. And next weekend, for sure it will be LeMans!

    Who says we have to pick one? They’re all pretty good if you ask me.

    1. Some of us just don’t have so many options sadly.

    2. digitalrurouni
      5th June 2015, 16:02

      Well said. But one cannot deny F1 is boring compared to WEC. One will be forigven for saying since F1 is the pinnacle it should be more exciting. But that’s not the case now is it? F1 needs to go back to the drawing board sort a few things out. WEC cars are not that far behind are they when lap times are considered? Even with all the regulations that were there to reduce downforce on the WEC cars they are faster this year than previous years! And technology wise someone tell me if I am wrong but they also have hybrid energy recover systems and all that. So what if any is the difference between the F1 engine tech and these cars? Very similar no? Just more variety in WEC? Only reason why F1 cars are quicker IMHO is because they have a lot more aero.

  12. Those who like F1, continue watching it and same goes for WEC. Stop trying to make F1 the same way as the other series because you like that a little better.

    Webber should shut up for a while. He is out of F1 to go to WEC and will do well to concentrate on it. He has not raced in the current spec and the last time he raced in it, he was soundly beaten by his team mate and by his friend (who by his own admission yearned for a RB) in a lesser Ferrari. Maybe F1 just isn’t for you Aussie Grit.

  13. Regarding Honda’s upgrade, why would they use tokens for a reliability upgrade? Are they not separate and tokens not counted towards the changes done for reliability?

    1. @evered7

      Exactly what I was thinking. They have used 2 tokens which IIRC can be used for changing the MGU-K, MGU-H, and some other stuff. Given that they had problems with the recovery (see their fuel usage), I think they changed something on that system, and not just for reliability, because they wouldn’t need tokens for that.

      But even if it is just for reliability, I think they can have a performance boost out of it, by using the components more efficiently, thus carrying less fuel, more charge/discharge cycles etc. SO all in all I think Alonso was just managing expectations, as they did before every race.

    2. Maybe the other teams blocked the changes based upon “reliability” as I’m pretty sure the teams have to agree to this.

  14. If there is any truth to that guardian article on porches becoming new entry for F1,that would make Webber seem pretty silly. Regardless, he might have a point, but the frequency of his repeating it seems a bit overdone, and not very impartial.

    1. Honestly, I still sense the Flav (i.e. BE) connection here @bosyber – isn’t it curious how Webber and Alonso both tend to bring these kind of things up saying much the same.

    2. Why would Porsche want to go to F1?

      1. Indeed. And just showing them a picture of the Footwork-Porsche would scare them off.

        However, they do have the only LMP1 powertrain that’s remotely suitable for single seaters (small petrol engine with monster hybrid power) and I wish F1 would allow its engine designers the freedom to develop more in that direction.

        1. And just showing them a picture of the Footwork-Porsche would scare them off.

          What about a McLaren TAG?

      2. @alianora-la-canta There is nothing in F1 that Porsche would possibly want. More Le Mans victories is where its heart lies.

    3. I get the impression that he keeps repeating it because people keep asking him about it.

    4. Why would Porsche bother?
      Discounting the TAG engine commissioned for McLaren and overseen to a large extent by John Barnard Porsche have failed in their previous F1 attempts.
      The 1.5 litre ‘Flat Eight’ was a one race winner, down to Dan Gurney if truth be told, while the preceding four cylinder car was only a stop gap grid filler.
      And then we had the V12 that Footwork struggled with, Alan Jenkins is reputed to ask why the initial set of drawings were overscale, it was huge.
      Big, heavy, thirsty and underpowered.
      Not good.
      As for those who dismiss Mark Webber’s comments, read and learn, the man has achieved more than any of his detractors have.

  15. For me if Webber is one of the best drivers in WEC what does that say about the caliber of drivers in WEC. He was a good driver in F1 but never one of the top 5 or 6.

    Mercs engine can last a complete 6 hour races and will most probably win it too. Even with the tires and fuel saving. There is no WEC car capable of winning a F1 race.

    1. I’m not sure that Webber really counts as one of the best drivers in WEC. It’s a completely different discipline. He’s fast, absolutely, but he’s hardly dominating his teammates.

      As for the Mercedes engine being up to the task, I’m afraid you’re mistaken. The Mercedes F1 engine would need some serious improvements to get close to the power output of the top power units in LMP1-H, and while it may be capable of lasting 6 hours, I doubt it’d survive a whole 24 without issues.

      But I really don’t see why people keep trying to turn this into a compatition. I love F1 and I love WEC – but they’re totally different motorsports, and the respective differences in speed are irrelevent. The appeal of F1 is totally different to the appeal of endurance racing.

      1. I do agree that it will not last 24 hours but only one race in the WEC championship is 24 the other are all 6 hours. The difference in horsepower is not a big problem because the F1 car is lighter then a WEC car and faster around the corners. If the engine last it should win easily. The reason i say should is because we newer seen a F1 car drive full out for 6 hours. That would be interesting. But i do agree that it is a sport on its own and that you can not compare it. I’m just tiered of people bad mouthing F1 and then comes on here and say WEC is so much better.

    2. @koosoos Perhaps your impression of Webber is just wrong. He’s fast over one lap flawless over a distance, fit, focused, hungry, a perfect media person, passionate about everything around Le Mans and racing and on top of that a gentleman.

      Besides that a LMP1 caris shared between drivers and each have their share in the race and tasks to complete. Arguably the best team is Lotterer his car but the #17 surely is fast.

      If you’d compare the LMP1 field with that of F1, I’d say it is far from reality to say F1 is the strongest. P1 drivers tend to be more experienced overall, have a big list of achievements where as half the F1 field bought their seat…

  16. Webber is right – but out of necessity rather than choice. I think Harry Ticknell represents an interesting case study. Early on in Harry’s career, he realized, whilst having been solid in European F3, F1 would not be possible. He is now a Nissan LMP1 factory driver and undisputed fastest LMP2 peddler in the world. This is because he changed the momentum of his career early on, and his reward is a P1 factory drive. Mitch Evans will likely follow Ticknell, and with Frijns part of the Audi family, I wonder how it will be before we see him racing in the WEC.

    My concern is not as Webber is suggesting, that those with an established F1 career might nonsensically opt to race in the WEC, but that more single seater stars, especially those without backers, will give up on the F1 dream knowing there is an alternative.

    1. It’s been happening for a while now. A lot of people are switching disciplines because not only is F1 so difficult to afford, but so is GP2 (and, to some extent, Formula Renault 3.5).

      1. @alianora-la-canta On that note, I can see Oliver Rowland winning WSR and then not getting a chance in GP2 or F1.

    2. I think you’re absolutely right. For all the problems that F1 seems to have always had, I can only name 2 drivers from the past 20 years who have publicly ditched their F1 careers to defect to another championship, those being Montoya and obviously Webber. I don’t think we’ll see many more. As long as the dream is still alive and a driver feels they can achieve in F1, they won’t willingly leave. Button and Alonso almost certainly will end up in the WEC, but not until they feel they can’t become world champion again.

      Certainly, though, we will see more young open-wheelers giving up on the F1 dream and pursuing the more stable and almost-as-attractive option of prototypes.

      1. @jackysteeg Webber might have had enough with F1 in 2013, but I equally couldn’t envisage Mark getting a drive for 2014 even if he wanted it. Montoya is a better example, he was in just his sixth season of F1 when he decided to start racing milk-floats. Something tells me Alonso might add Le Mans to his two championship before hanging up his gloves. Could you imagine a driver better suited to being an LMP1 driver?

    3. @countrygent Good example, and I guess Evans will follow lacking the cash to get an F1 chance. I would like to see Audi enter F1 also to give Hulkenberg, Frijns and then Kirchhofer a chance! Else all three could easily be in WEC..

  17. ColdFly F1 (@)
    5th June 2015, 8:28

    2 weeks later and we’re still discussing Verstappen. For me it is still the same:
    – he made Monaco interesting (and a certain strategist);
    – he should never have mentioned brake-testing (not done).

  18. Craig Wilde
    5th June 2015, 9:52

    From what I saw, Grosjean did slow earlier then he did the lap prior while Verstappen slowed slightly later, likely with the hope of being on top of Grosjean out of the corner. When he realised the slowing speed it was already too late to avoid an accident.
    But he’s getting too wrapped up in it now and he’s not doing himself any favours. He needs to focus on the next race rather then whine.

    1. Apparently, according to their telemetry, Verstappen braked at the same point as the previous lap, and Grosjean actually lifted off and braked later than the previous lap.

      The difference on that lap was that Verstappen was much closer to Grosjean, and since Verstappen was gaining on Grosjean in each braking zone (as Grosjean’s tyres were old) he hit into him in the braking zone.

      Technically it’s Verstappen’s fault for failing to take account of the fact that he was able to brake later than Grosjean (and therefore hitting into the back of him), which is why Verstappen was given the penalty. Grosjean did nothing wrong and was totally blameless.

  19. I wish people would stop claiming that WEC is a flat out sprint all race with drivers pushing all the time because it isn’t.

    You only have to watch onboard camera footage from WEC to see just as much, if not more lift and coast compared to f1. when they double/triple stint there tyres they need to manage them throughout the stint to ensure they still have life left in them at the end of the 2nd/3rd stint.
    I watched the last round at Spa a few weeks ago & you had radio traffic from one of the Porsche’s from memory discussing tyre management & you had the commentators mention the lift and coast and tyre saving.

    I also have to say that i found that race a little boring, you had a lot of action over the 1st half hour & the last half hour was interesting to some degree but the few hours in-between featured very little action whatsoever as everyone was managing there strategies because they didn’t have enough fuel to do the race on 6 stops so were trying to minimize the splash & dash required at the end by by saving fuel to go longer & saving the tyres to not have to change them at the final stop.

    1. For the fuel, it depends which class you’re looking at. LMP1 has quite a lot of lift-and-coast. LMP2 and GTE have a lot less of it, though still with some depending exactly how they’ve decided to handle their fuel load that stint. Tyres are an issue in every class, and part of why endurance racing still warrants the name.

      It is not, however, forced on them, so they can always decide to take an extra fuel stop and put the pedal to the metal if that’s the fastest way round the track at that particular time. They never have to worry about hitting some invisible fuel quantity limit or running out of compound (though thanks to new rules, they do now have to worry about running out of tyres altogether…)

      1. Yes, that tyre rule is a nasty case of stupid F1 rules spreading elsewhere in motorsport and spoiling the racing. The F1 points system is also unsuitable for WEC when there’s usually fewer than 10 finishers in each class.

  20. How many F1 drivers will give up their F1 seat for a Top WEC seat right now?
    How many WEC drivers will give up their WEC seats if offered an F1 seat?

    1. Exactly. While lots of ex-F1 drivers and those who feel the time is right for them to move on (Webber) may go to F1, I don’t see younger active drivers going that way unless their only shot is with Manor.

  21. I just watched the video for today and just noticed some thing. F1 has not changed one bit. The pole car starts at the front and goes on to win in a domenined way. There is no action at the front only in the middle of the pack.
    The fans enjoyed the race. It is not like to day where the same thing happens and he fans call the race boring.
    It is not that F1 has changed it is the fans that have changed

    1. or the fans noticed there is far more interesting racing in other series, and are not fooled by the f”1″ moniker anymore.

  22. Can’t we live in a world where F1 and WEC are both awesome? They are both great in my opinion, but are so different that I don’t see the need for constant comparisons. Grand Prix racing is essentially a different sport than endurance racing, let them both flourish.

  23. Michael Brown
    5th June 2015, 16:41

    Why is WEC taking attention away from F1? I believe it is because it offers what F1 no longer does.

    1. because it is going forward as a series and the cars are getting more and more interesting, and the racing is great, and the cars are getting faster… while f1 is getting slower and less spectacular, and is not that much faster then other racing series anymore.

  24. “so are they going to be taking a third PU now?”

    Must be the Italian diet :0)

    1. yes, but they can reuse the first 2 again.

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