Bernie Ecclestone, Red Bull Ring, 2015

Fans ‘don’t know how many cylinders engines have’

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Bernie Ecclestone, Red Bull Ring, 2015In the round-up: Bernie Ecclestone believes F1 fans’ understanding of the sport doesn’t extend as far as knowing how many cylinders the engines have.


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

Bernie Ecclestone still a force to be reckoned with in F1’s engine room (The Guardian)

"If you and I and go the grandstand and ask a spectator ‘How many cylinders has that engine got?’ one or two might get it right."

Bernie Ecclestone plotted £600m Wimbledon takeover 20 years ago (The Telegraph)

"At the time, we were looking to try and take over the ATP and run the tennis."

Formula One teams warned against 'dummy' pit stops (Reuters)

"Going into the pit lane like this, for no valid reason, is not allowed but the difficulty would be proving it was a clear breach."

Haas says experienced F1 driver a must (Motorsport)

"We definitely want to have drivers who are currently competing on the starting grid, people with experience."

Honda happy with reliability (Sky)

"The reliability is almost fixed, but everyday there are small problems that pop up, but our main concern was to finish. Now we turn to the power side to get more competitiveness."

Michelin sure it can boost F1 excitement (Autosport)

"We simply believe in giving an opportunity to the driver and the engineers of the cars to extract the maximum possibility from each component, and with the driver being a very noble component."

Ricciardo laughs off Ferrari speculation (F1)

"Obviously it is nice to be regarded by a top team like that - it’s nice to know there is interest from other teams as well. But I am with a top team too."

Mercedes may relent on engine development for good of F1 (Crash)

"Ferrari found that loophole, and it was clever how they did it. Now they say they have maybe opened a can of worms because it is expensive."

Life through a lens: British GP (ESPN)

"I was just concentrating on people coming out of the last corner and it paid off because Kimi lost it, did a tankslapper and then half spun and caught it."

Billionaire Stroll interested in Williams (F1i)

"Canadian billionaire Lawrence Stroll is rumored to be interested in buying a stake in Williams Grand Prix."

Nelson Piquet jun.: 'Crashgate von Journalisten aufgebauscht' (Motorsport Total - German)

Nelson Piquet Jnr, who won the first Formula E championship last month, complains he is still most well-known for his involvement in Crashgate.

Esso #FuelYourSenses VR experience (Esso via YouTube)


Comment of the day

Is Formula One overdosing on change when it needs consistency?

I’m starting to get worried about all this talk of changing the format of the weekend, etc… Formula One seems to be changing from an established sport with its heritage and history to an entertainment product that changes at the the whims of the noisiest detractors. The fundamental problems with F1 are known: unfair funding for teams, slowish cars (relative to some years) and slight lack of track action (sometimes!) – but now we want to change to everything else?

For example, why do we need a sprint race to finalise the grid (a suggestion that seems to be gaining some traction)? A car with good quality pace and poorer race pace will end up being demoted during the sprint and make ‘qualifying’ pointless, how will have the cars line up on the grid in order of race pace competitiveness help the race? This doesn’t seem to have been considered by the ‘powers that be’.

F1 needs to respect itself more, is it worth changing the DNA of the sport to pander to those who are bored? What would these same fans say if they were to watch races from the 70s/80s, a period regarded by some as the ‘golden age’ would we change everything then?

My fear is that we are becoming so convinced that F1 is broken, that the sport will ‘correct’ itself into a mediocre and ‘fake’ entertainment formula.

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On this day in F1

A superb start propelled Juan Pablo Montoya to victory in the British Grand Prix ten years ago today. But second place for Fernando Alonso meant he extended his points lead over title rival Kimi Raikkonen, who was third after his second engine change penalty in as many races.

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  • 119 comments on “Fans ‘don’t know how many cylinders engines have’”

    1. It shows how Bernie Ecclestone knows little about fans.
      “If you and I and go the grandstand and ask a spectator ‘How many cylinders has that engine got?’ one or two might get it right.”
      Is he showing his age…

      1. I wonder in which country Bernie thinks people are willing to spend $500. to watch cars they know nothing about race.

        1. +1 – perfect comment

        2. I guess the relatively small amount of grandstands in a country like Abu Dhabi or Russia answer that question @hohum.

          The points is probably that Bernie is not at all interested in people visiting the event, apart maybe from full grandstands making the “show” look better on TV.

          Yeah, I would say that a huge majority would know these are V6s and then continue on to school Bernie on many other aspects of F1.

          1. Correct. Ask anyone that “how many cylinders” question in America or Europe and it would be an insult.

        3. Boom! Perfect response @hohum.

      2. When was the last time he went to the grandstand to talk to fans? James Hunt must have been around…

      3. ColdFly F1 (@)
        10th July 2015, 6:57

        ‘ask a spectator () one or two might get it right’ is quite impressive.
        That’s 100%-200%!

      4. Hm, thinking about it, this actually makes huge sense. Just look at who Bernie is going to actually meet during a race? Surely not the ordinary, sweaty and poor folk in the granstands? No, he will have asked the VIP club invitees, where I wouldn’t be surprised if half of them don’t even really know there is a race going on!

        1. Yeah I thought the same thing. Do they even watch the race? It makes F1 look bad imo, those people not watching just socializing while the race is going on.

        2. @bascb good point my friend.

      5. Everybody knows all the engines have 6 cylinders, except McLaren.

        1. hmm not sure, the guys I was camping near at Silverstone this year who professed themselves F1 addicts didn’t know . .

      6. the problem is Bernie only speaks to the rich & famous… and he’s probably right, most of them wouldn’t know how many cylinders the cars have, or to that matter what a cylinder even was as most of them are just there because its ‘in-thing’

        obviously if you ask a real fan they’ll all know of course… 12 right? all fast cars are v12s ;-)

        1. You nailed it.. I was lucky enough to be in Monaco this year and watched from the roof top of the Fairmont. Judging from the people around me all weekend staying at the Fairmont, most had no idea what was going on, some even called anything racing that had open wheels a F1 car. Most of the rich & famous are there just for the party and to be seen… as it’s the “place to be” in the world at that moment, nothing more.

      7. Two things:

        One, coming from Bernie, who consistently bad mouths the engines (er, PUs), it’s pretty rich for him to comment on people not knowing about engines. Perhaps, if he did a better job, fans would be better informed.

        Two, what difference does it make anyway? Fans want to see good racing. It doesn’t really matter if the cars have three cylinders…it’s how fast they’re going and how well they’re driven that matters.

      8. Please do not comment on news like that spreaded by mr. Ecclestone and dear mr. Collantine I beg you to stop publishing this nonsense. That guy just wants to be talked about. This is pure populism and as long as people respond he’ll get what he wants.. It’s like Zypras telling everyone that he is not going to pay the debt! And some international media responding in trying to make every greece person look lazy and stuff..

        -Zum Haare raufen! (german phrase of speech – ‘tear one’s hair’)

      9. I think Bernie knows his business better than random harcore fan.
        I myself know about cylinders of course, but I don’t care how many of them and if internal combustion is going on at all as long as racing is exciting.

    2. What’s a cylinder?

      1. Don’t know, sounds fancy.

      2. Like a cuboid, but not.

      3. Chris (@tophercheese21)
        10th July 2015, 1:38

        I believe it was an old wooden ship used in the civil war era.

        1. Back when Bernie was a teenager.

        2. No, that’s what diversity is. LOUD NOISES!

      4. It’s the flat thing in front of the cars that creates lift so the cars go slower.

      5. A cylinder is another name for the box Bernie should be in …….

      6. Its the one which stores fuel

      7. It’s the metal thing Red Bull drinks come in. Obvious favouritism from Bernie!

      8. Im pretty sure its a geometric figure, I’m a student of mathematics.

      9. Those black rubber things that fall apart too quickly with the word “Pirelli” written on them?

      10. It’s a person that cylinds.

    3. My goodness! Can you imagine if Bernie had taken over the tennis?

      Racquets which widen if the ball travels across the court within one second, and strings which snap after five hits!

      1. There’d be no first week at Wimbledon either, because players outside the top 20 don’t really contribute to the show and make the sport look bad. And any players that do compete can expect to be paid peanuts in prize money, since most money will have to be paid to Djokovic and Federer just to make sure they don’t quit the sport.

        1. And Nike would supply shoes that became very slippery at the end of a long set.

        2. Instead of Melbourne, Roland Garros, Wimbledon and New York being the 4 grand slams, they would be at Qatar, Abu Dhabi, Russia and Azerbaijan.

          The games in the 5th set would be worth double points

        3. ColdFly F1 (@)
          10th July 2015, 7:00

          You can only use 4 racquets during the season.
          Or sit out a set if you need an additional one.

          1. Penalties for breaking racquets

      2. We do not believe we were in any violation of not getting user opt in for permissions,

        I’m sure his sprinkler idea would be a massive hit with tennis viewers :P

        1. *

          My goodness! Can you imagine if Bernie had taken over the tennis?

          never cut and copy work emails onto forums :/

      3. Female players in bikinis to “improve the show”…

        1. Yesssssss!

    4. Ridiculuos how you cannot use Formula 1 website to watch some of the videos, because you are not in UK or something.

    5. So hold on, Toto Wolff admitted it was a dummy stop – surely isn’t that all the evidence that’s needed to prove it and sanction accordingly?

      1. Apparently not. There’s a pattern developing here – not long ago Charlie Whiting acknowledged that Mercedes had broken the rules against driver coaching, but claimed he could do nothing unless one of the other teams complained to him first. (That’s not actually in the regs, Charlie)

        1. oh no – reminds me of the Ferrari years in the early 2000s :(

          1. I don’t think it’s really the same thing, It’s not like Mercedes are above being punished for breaking the rules, otherwise they would of let Hamilton going over the white line slip as well, they didn’t they got a penalty. I just think that a team reporting another team for something they all have done, I remember Red Bull in Singapore with RIC with some very clear coaching so it’s hard for a team to report another team for doing something that it has done itself.

            1. Going over the white line is never going to be let slip. That is as obvious as a mistake any driver can make.

              I think the other teams will complain if the next time it happens. Williams are sort of Mercedes’ B Team. They are happy to collect the points through the strong performance offered by the Mercedes engines. Not really interested in the WDC/WCC, not their fault though.

              If this was done in the Malaysian GP or if Ferrari were involved in the fight, it sure would have been reported. Anyway, now that this is out in open, I think the other teams will have an eye out for the mistakes in forecoming races.

            2. @evered7

              Going over the white line is never going to be let slip. That is as obvious as a mistake any driver can make.

              Yeah I get that, my point wasn’t really about that but that Mercedes hasn’t got to the Ferrari stage where they become bigger than the sport.

              Not really interested in the WDC/WCC, not their fault though.

              I wouldn’t say they aren’t interested I just think they are realistic of what is possible at the moment, If in 2016 there developed a car that was as fast as the Mercedes and could take the fight to them in the championship they would. There’s nothing in the contract that says they can’t fight and beat the team.

              if Ferrari were involved in the fight

              I’m not so sure that Ferrari would want to set the precedent to be honest, especially as this is a trick they are quite fond of playing themselves. They never know when it could come to bite. It rarely works anyway for any team but they all try it.

              I just don’t see what the big deal is with the whole thing if I’m honest, It’s a tactic sport who will be surprised when they play tactics? This has happened countless times even in the shortish time I’ve been watching F1 and it’s known teams have done it yet we haven’t heard anything about it, especially not at the Charlie Whiting level.

            3. Mercedes hasn’t got to the Ferrari stage where they become bigger than the sport.

              Where the organizers start developing rules to curb their speeds? Mercedes still haven’t got their engine advantage neutralized to emulate Ferrari.

              There’s nothing in the contract that says they can’t fight and beat the team.

              Didn’t know you were privy to those details :) As a whole in the last year, Williams definitely didn’t maximise their advantage to get at Mercedes and they didn’t put up much of a fight when Mercedes come to pass them as well considering they have a straight line speed advantage too.

              I just don’t see what the big deal is with the whole thing if I’m honest

              If it is explicitly said that such a thing cannot be done, they cannot do it. It is not about how big or small the issue at hand is. It is not legal as the action is against what is written in the rules. I am not sure when this exact set of rule was into picture but now that it is here, I am happy that it will be followed.

            4. @evered7

              Where the organizers start developing rules to curb their speeds?

              This is pretty much my point, As to why Mercedes haven’t entered the Ferrari era of the 00’s.

              Didn’t know you were privy to those details :)

              Rob Smedly confirmed this last year. As the stories about Williams just being a Mercedes protection team started coming out and he was asked directly if there was anything in the contract that would stop them racing Mercedes for the title. He confirmed there wasn’t

              I am not sure when this exact set of rule was into picture but now that it is here, I am happy that it will be followed.

              I’m not saying that if a rule is broken it shouldn’t be punished, What I’m saying is that it’s a silly rule as mind games are part of the sport, and a rule that they’re suddenly after years of it happening in F1 starting to enforce, either enforce a rule completely from the moment it enters the sport or not at all.

        2. But on the other hand, Alonso and Button must be punished with 50 grid positions penalty for having a new power unit out of desperate need. :)

          1. While I agree the penalty point amount is ridiculous having new engines needs to be penalised, too much of a sporting advantage can be gained from not doing so. Not really the same thing as a dummy pit stop.

            1. +1 Yeah, those penalties are even lighter than they have been previously. People are annoyed by them because Renault/Honda couldn’t build a proper PU. But you wouldn’t want a team gaining advantage from new engine couple of years ago. It’s funny that there are 20 grid slots filled, but they can accumulate 25 grid penalties, but not totally illogical like people claim imo.

        3. No one protested Ferrari shrouding their car in Austria, so the stewards took no action. Mercedes shrouded their car at Silverstone, Ferrari protested, so the stewards reprimanded them. Given the precedent in Austria, and Ferrari’s hypocrisy, the punishment was only a reprimand.

          Even the scrutineers did nothing about Ferrari (and possibly others) using expanding pipes to circumvent fuel flow regulations, until it was protested by another team before Barcelona.

          1. It is said that the team suspected for fuel flow tricks was Mercedes.

            1. From everything I have read they thought it was on the Ferrari as there was talk about if it a major factor in the increased pace of the Ferrari this season. Although as far as I’m aware all engines were tested and nothing unto-wards was found.

      2. Mansell said the reason why there was no penalty was that unless it is reported to them by another team then they are powerless. Which is find really strange but whats the big deal? This thing has been happening in F1 for years, every team has done it at some point but now suddenly it’s an issue because Susie Wolff sent a text to her husband laughing, and the media picked up on it…really? F1 has got bigger problems than wasting its time policing when a team is playing a dummy.

        It’s another driver helmet moment, although that is something they could police, trying to prove that a team really wasn’t coming into the pits at any given time would be quite hard and a pointless waste of time.

      3. @mouse_nightshirt Some infractions actually need to be reported by someone before it can be investigated further. Something like leaving a track to gain advantage (i.e. cutting the chicane) actually need to be reported (which is why if its between teammates incident you rarely see its being investigated because team don’t really want to report themselves) unless it was clearly stated there was zero tolerance during driver briefing (like this year silverstone or last year red bull ring). Also remember the red bull flexible front wing and 2010 double diffuser is investigated after there are complaints from other team.

    6. Part of me agrees with Bernie to a degree, but I think his estimate of how many people know the engines is a bit off. I wouldn’t be surprised if it was less than 50%.

      Remember this website is called F1 Fanatic, so we are fanatics and obviously know the answer, but how many people who attended Silverstone would be like us? There have been times when I’ve been to the Australian GP here buying merchandise and overhearing people say “Who’s the Australian? Webber/Ricciardo? I’ll get his shirt then”. I would assume those people have no idea about the cars too. They’re just there to watch a race and join in the spectacle.

      It’s the same as the Melbourne Cup here too. Thousands of people flock in. How many of them realise that there are horse races all day? And it’s not just that day that they happen? How many of them actually like horse racing, or know the names of the jockeys, horses, trainers and owners?

      People will just flock to major events because it is big, popular and friends/family are going too. Think of how the F1 weekends are run with the bands, other entertainment etc. As a fanatic I just go to watch the races and that’s it. All the others who aren’t fanatics will go and watch the bands, entertainment etc and if they have the chance, will watch some cars fly by.

      1. @travis, you probably have nailed one of the locations where people might spend $500 to be at an event they know very little about, the GP in Melbourne being within a short public transport ride for a million or so people and being the event of the week, Monaco is likely another where people flock to see and be seen, but Silverstone requires planning and a journey away from the city to attend, nor is it the only thing on that weekend so I doubt there are many ignoramuses there that are not in the company of a knowledgeable fan.

      2. ok, us petrolheads not only knows how many cylinders does the engine have, but that’s because we like that part too! a casual fan, who doesn’t know how many cylinders, or if it’s hybrid or don’t, he only cares about the show. And silverstone proved to be a great show. So, who cares if the engines have 6, 8, 12 or 16, for that matter, if the racing is good?

        1. I completely agree with you @travis, and I really dislike that sort of fan.
          I never understand why people go to events they don’t care about, particuarly the Melbourne Cup. I never go and refuse to bet on it (mainly because I think its cruel to the horses, 2 died after last years race), and it annoys the heck out of me that people go just to dress up, get drunk and then look ignorant and washed out when the camera gets to them.

          And I agree about the blind patriotism most people have. I do cheer for Webber and Ricciardo, because they both seem like really nice people, but I also go for others who aren’t Aussie.
          During the build-up to the race this year, some local celebrities had to pick a name out of a hat for a sweep, everyone said they wanted Ricciardo, and when someone got Hamilton it had to be explained to them that he was the favourite. It’s the same for Tennis, Australian’s who cheer for Kygrios without caring he’s an arrogant, mopey kid.

          Tennis is relatively easy to understand and I think what I’m saying is that F1 needs to do the same, was it Todt who said the technology around F1 needs to be better marketed? You can try to win people over with bands and entertainment but they can go to a music festival for that.

          I think the main reason Bernie guesses that a lot people don’t know about cars, is because F1 has the potential to be one of the greatest live spectacles in the world, so it will attract more people who realise this but don’t know anything else. Sure you can get a good atmosphere at the soccer with people chanting, but it doesn’t beat the ground trembling V8’s and big crashes. And the fact that only 20 people in the world get to do it, not 20 in one particular team in just one part of Europe. On the grand scale of things, F1 is doing a pretty poor job of making a spectacle which has the potential to be better then just about everything else.

          1. If you only want loud noise and spectacle you’d be better off going to monster-truck racing @mickey18.

            1. Actually @hohum, I think I’m one of the few who likes the noise now, because I watch from home and haven’t been to a race with the new power units. Although I can imagine it would be quite disappointing compared to the V8’s. And I’m also not too concerned with the spectacle, I just want the cars to be faster. But we are talking about casual fans here, who probably want more exhibition, cars driving over the top of one another like monster trucks.

      3. The best thing I heard at Silverstone was;

        From which side are the cars coming?

        1. Lol, how about, are these cars right hand drive?

        2. I had “Is the red one Lewis?” from a dear old biddy sitting next to me!

      4. I think you have a good point here. We are FANATICS, we love every aspect of the show, the racing, the technology, the controversy, the silly season, all of it. It’s part of being so invested in something you go on a website about it and talk about it.

        Probably 60 – 70% of people I spoke to at a Silverstone this year were there just for a big day or 2 days out. they knew a couple of names and teams, but when someone is teaching the friend they came with about the sport but cannot recall Sauber or Manor’s names, that isn’t a fan, they are someone who enjoys watching it every now and then. Most likely just their local race

    7. LOL… imagine Bernie on tennis ! Wimbledon would be held at Moscow and everyone bar the top 5 would be given 10 cents for their wins!

    8. Easy Bernie, 6 cylinders.

      Now, how many zeros in the number of dollars you milked from F1 this year? How many million of CSV’s take should have been shared with the teams to keep the sport viable.

    9. Cars do not have tankslappers, it is a phenomena unique to motorcycles and handlebars. I’ve had a tankslapper (and been lucky enough to ride it out) and a four-wheeled vehicle simply does not ever behave in that way.

      1. Absolutely correct, I too had a tankslapper, fortunately at suburban speed and also recovered control but it did remind me of the behaviour of my 1960s VW beetle when the rear wheels “tucked under” on the swing axles.

      2. Quad-bike? I’m sure they behave more like a motorcycle than a car. A ‘Tankslapper’ is just a term for a scarey moment that originated from the bike world. That is how a living language works. Words move around and meanings change.

        When I was a baby a mobile was something you hung over a crib or outside in the wind. Now it means something completely different. How are we to cope?

    10. In the current climate of applying penalties for breaking rules over more than one race weekend, I would be surprised if the stewards do not take a rather dim view of the Mercedes ‘fake’ pit stop and levy a penalty on Mercedes for the next race.

      Pit lane safety has been an important issue in recent years. The introduction of a speed limit has been strictly enforced, and it is only a couple years ago that we saw more restrictions introduced following non-team personnel (i.e. media) injured during pit lane activity.

      The rules for the deployment of pit crew are very clear. Even though they can be deployed and withdrawn for good reasons, it is evident that there’s scope for abuse within the letters of the law. But when a team effectively admits to breaking those, action must be taken, even if it is after the event and carries forward to the next race.

      What Mercedes did was quite cynical, probably pretty safe, and ultimately had little or no bearing on the result. They may not have done this if there were other cars entering the pits at the time, but that’s not the point. If a rule exists, and it is a sound rule, it should not be able to be broken even if there’s no danger perceived.

      Whatever the penalty is for a fake pit stop, it should be carried forward to the next race: the equivalent of a red card and subsequent suspension in football. Otherwise, where is the disincentive for teams to subsequently not do the same at future races? Especially when it is so clearly admitted by such a senior person within the team?

      I’m quite disappointed that Mercedes decided to do this, knowing that it was a breach of the rules. The plethora of rules if in F1 are undoubtably stretched and tested constantly, but many are highly technical and obscure. This is one that’s unambiguous and visible, and to let it pass on a weekend where Mercedes were also warned for another rule breach (covering the car on return to the pits) just diminishes the viewers’ confidence in the whole regulation structure.

      1. Unfortunately no specific penalty is mentioned in the Sporting Regulations. That would not stop a more general one

        1. give ’em a token £10k fine and move on
          neither driver can be penalised – if they can identify who the dummy was for, it wasn’t a dummy.

    11. Neil (@neilosjames)
      10th July 2015, 1:56

      I think this is just Bernie’s hobby. He comes out with something ridiculous then sits back quietly chuckling at the crapstorm he created, and has a little chart hung up in his office with a minion filling in how many angry tweets, column inches or Facebook comments each one generates…

      Twitter trolling for billionaires.

      1. He may be deriving data from the answers he gets… a different form of conveying a survey.
        However, I´m quite sure there were more people knowing the cylinder bank angles when they were different from each other. It´s not as interesting when they are all the same, prescribed by the rules.

    12. Totally agree with the COTD, F1 needs to change but not that much. There will always be boring races and good races, for every 1986, 2012 season we get a lump one like 85 or 2011, it happens. What they need to focus on is cutting engine costs and, perhaps, stop making so many novel changes and just freeze the cars development so the other teams catch up. If they cars designed is radically reshuffled again, one team will have an upper hand and just make thing look boring again (Brawn in 2009, Mercedes right now, for example). Perhaps the solution is in stopping everything for a while, changing only money issues like engine costs and prize distribution.

      1. for every 1986, 2012 season we get a lump one like 85 or 2011

        @eduardogigante I think you’ll find plenty of people who think 2011 was actually quite a good season. It was not like 2012 surely but 2014 obviously is a far better example of a boring season (as still is 2015). In 2011 we still had a lot of good races with a lot of movement in those races.

        I agree wholeheartedly that the rules should remain the same but the financial model needs change and allow the team to develop more on the engine side.

        1. +100000000000

    13. Bernie clearly doesn’t know the fans, and it still work for him, so why complain?

    14. Nelson Piquet Jnr, who won the first Formula E championship last month, complains he is still most well-known for his involvement in Crashgate.

      Well is a fact that is easier for people to remember the bad over the good, and I don´t think Formula E is that popular.

      1. -Takes part in one of the worst cases of cheating in the most prestigious racing series.

        -Wins a championship in a new series with slow cars.

        Geez, I wonder why people still think about the Crashgate first.

      2. Yeah, crashgate was, and still is a big thing – one of the biggest cases of cheating in the history of F1 and maybe motorsport, crashing on purpose also hits a big snare with all the efforts to improve safety, so its not something that will be easily forgotten.
        Actually I do not think anyone will ever forget.

        As for Piquet, it will be his “cross to bear” for life. But he did do a good job with the first formula E title, and if he can go on and build on that to achieve motorsport success, to future generations he may well be known as a guy who came back strong after a serious mistake early in his career @celeste @casjo

        1. @bascb – It is easy to understand why fans remember something like crashgate. But, redemption can be a wonderful thing in life if one puts their second chance to good use. I hope Piquet continues to move forward.

          I have much less hope for Flav.

          1. yeah, Flav is still behaving as if he did nothing wrong, and nothing I have seen of him after that did anything to redeem himself @bullmello.

            1. @bascb @bullmello, a case of “….just 1 goat”

          2. Pat Symonds was also involved.

            1. And I think he has redeemed himself too by first going to work somewhere else, then helping get Manor in some form and changing to Williams @pal.

              The same is possible for Piquet, and last FE season was a good way to do so for him.

        2. In this modern era of F1, we have seen 2 of the biggest cases of cheating in it’s history. Spygate topping the two, followed closely by Crashgate. I frown heavily on espionage though.

      3. While I think no one should forget he participated in crashgate, it’s quite the double standard that Fernando Alonso gets away with it in many F1 fans eyes.

        1. I don’t know whether he knew about it or not, but the fact he did never express any kind of shame about the whole mess made me loss a bunch of respect for Alonso.

          And then he starts rambling about samurais.

          1. I was quit curious about this too. And also, for Michael Shumacher. Although he did a lot of cheap actions in races during his entire career (some maybe even worse than crashgate, like hitting others’ cars), he still has countless fans. So, what is the standard of a great driver?

            1. @peking901
              What Schumacher did to Hill and Villenueve is no different to what Senna & Prost, and other drivers have done in the past.

          2. Of course there is a difference. Prost and Senna’s conflict was team battel and then revenge. But what Micheal and Carshgate did are cheating.

      4. Participating in Crashgate was Nelson’s crime; it is also his punishment.

      5. Everyone is still besmirched but what happened in that race.
        Except for the teflon-covered spaniard driver, who, oh surprise, didn´t know anything and oh didn´t realize something fishy was going on….
        BOTH should have been banned from F1.

    15. Canadian billionaire Lawrence Stroll is rumored to be interested in buying a stake in Williams Grand Prix.

      Then he will take Lance “crash-strewn” Stroll to the seat competing with GP3 champion Alex Lynn???

    16. Having read the article with Bernie, I have to say besides his somewhat delusive comment about the fans not knowing F1-tech, the things he said seem pretty reasonable. I think people judge him maybe too quickly by going reading just the headlines. To me he appears a lot more reasonable than say 3-4 years ago. I believe Bernie is not one of F1’s biggest problems right now.

    17. The fundamental formula for wheel to wheel action is to have a quicker car trying to come past a slower car. Anything that shakes up the grid order would make things more exciting. I’d love to see a sprint race that starts in reverse championship order on Saturday to determine the grid for Sunday.

    18. From the Guardian article:

      The problem for Ecclestone is that he cannot be the dictator he once was.

      I believe that a dictatorship can exist either if the citizens cannot leave it or if it offers something so good that the people voluntarily give up their rights. F1 teams are free to leave (basically everyone agrees that the agreements will not hold them if they really want to go) so if Bernie wants to be a dictator, then he should make F1 much more attractive for the teams and other stakeholders. After all, a promoter is there to promote so perhaps he should do more of that thing…

    19. This silly sprint race idea needs to be spun into a gravel trap and bogged. I love having a World Championship for Drivers based on a series of races over a year – but each race is special, unique to that particular country – or at least should be. Remember, there were individual Grands’ Prix before there was a World Championship? They were one-off events per country and gained credibility because of that. That credibility remains (just?).
      Currently a driver and team have an hour and a half or so to win, or try as hard as they can with the resources they have. It’s an intense time and should remain so. The Grand Prix race is the test and it’s a hard test. It’s been designed that way from the start. Adding a sprint race would detract from that concept and dilute the exclusivity and heritage that Grand Prix racing and Formula 1 has cultivated over decades.

      1. I’ll tell you what happens, most of people won’t watch 3 of the events. People with shorter attention span will watch the sprint race instead of grand prix. You cannot blame them actually, because probably not much will be changing in the race. You effectively neutralize the qualifying by having a sprint race in between. Some other people will watch the grand prix and sprint race. Some will not watch anything at all anymore. At the moment qualifying showcases a different set of skill for both the driver and the car. You will be effectively getting rid of it. In a race, faster car finishes ahead of the slower car. If they are not doing that, it’s because they qualified badly or had a bad start. Now quali will lose a big part of its importance and the excitement it brings will be gone.
        Maybe they should change the name to GP1.

    20. I’ll tell you what happens, most of people won’t watch 3 of the events. People with shorter attention span will watch the sprint race instead of grand prix. You cannot blame them actually, because probably not much will be changing in the race. You effectively neutralize the qualifying by having a sprint race in between. Some other people will watch the grand prix and sprint race. Some will not watch anything at all anymore. At the moment qualifying showcases a different set of skill for both the driver and the car. You will be effectively getting rid of it. In a race, faster car finishes ahead of the slower car. If they are not doing that, it’s because they qualified badly or had a bad start. Now quali will lose a big part of its importance and the excitement it brings will be gone.
      Maybe they should change the name to GP1.

    21. If Haas is in touch with 10 drivers on the current formula 1 grid, and are not looking for any rookies, it might make for an interesting teammate match up next year.

      Something tells me it might be a Button/Vergne line up, or maybe a Perez/Vergne line up for them next year.

      I don’t think the Hulk, Ricciardo, Bottas would risk it Haas, as they are on their way up in the driver’s market. But solid drivers that are currently not on the starting grid or at the end of their career might give it a shot.

      I’m sure Haas will really be gunning for Button

      1. Not sure Button will show much interest in that though @todfod

        I rather think Haas is likely to end up with Mexican connection Guttierez (both Money from Slim/Mexico, potential with Latino’s in the US and his connection with Ferrari) and then Vergne or someone like him (surely not Nelsinho Piquet :-o) might be in the picture too, yes. And maybe give Alex Rossi a shot as 3rd driver if he can find some funds for it.

        Hulk, would probably only do it if he gets a Ferrari deal for 2016-17 but is parked at Haas until they take the step to fire Kimi, but who knows. Haas would surely be happy to have him.

    22. That’s what happens when you create sport for dummies to get more TV ratings. Just concentrate on what real fans want

    23. And further comment round up…
      Of course people remember you for crash-gate Nelsinho, it was abhorrent, whether or not you were coerced into it.
      Honda… what are you smoking, to be so happy with such abject performance (and reliability)?
      Haas should get Nelsinho/Di Grassi/D’Ambrosio… they have F1 experience right?
      Dummy pitstops… get our knickers in a twist much? It’s been done for decades and any team that falls for it, deserves it.
      I suppose if Bernie had taken up Wimbeldon, he might have conceded that women, while being appliances, look damn good in those short skirts. He might also have tried to encourage them to yell more ‘orgasmically’ when smashing a forehand…
      Michelin are bullish… will Pirelli whinge about being given a thankless task when Michelin tyres are a second a lap quicker? Will Ross Brawn return to F1 just so we can see him seriously take a giggling reporter to task on the issue?
      Are they sure Ricciardo ‘laughed off Ferrari speculation?” He might have been choking slightly while smiling… you never know.
      Aw thanks Mercedes, rub it in would you.
      Seb to Bernie (ESPN article) – “U wot m8?” Kimi – “Iseevodkaicecreamshopoverthere”

    24. Bernie is right, it shouldn’t matter how many cylinders there are, the best package should win. A lot of people think because a motor has fewer cylinders or less displacement, that it will use less fuel, that is not really the case at all. But F1 is being marketed to people who don’t understand efficiency or optimization, people who buy what they are told, and I think Bernie brings up a good point. I think some people don’t see what Bernie is implying though, it’s not the number of cylinders that is important.

      1. btw, it will be interesting to see how reliable and powerful the Honda ‘PU’ is at Hungary. Any of those power units are bullet proof if you notch them down enough.

    25. It seems that Lawrence Stroll (big Ferrari fan) is really determined to buy his son Lance Stroll who is a part of the FDA a seat into F1. First he was linked with buying a stock in McLaren before it was sold to Ron Dennis then his attempt to take over Sauber has failed and now he is linked with buying a share in Williams,
      The interesting thing is the 40 licence points that a driver should collect before entering F1, Lance with his current results in the Euro F3 is unlikely to collect those points in the next 3 years.
      So why his father is insisting on buying a share in an F1 team while his son would probably have to wait 3 or 4 years ?

    26. Josh (really)
      10th July 2015, 15:20

      Thanks for COTD Keith!

    27. They are 4 bangers right?

      No seriously, I didn’t like the idea of anything less than a v8, and when they suggested a 4 banger, I pretty much lost all faith that F1 really knows what F1 is. I hate to say it, but E1 is gaining a lot of headway at a time when F1 has went full senile. All E1 needs is more horsepower. After that, F1 will be know as the carnival league.

    28. Gotta disagree with Bernie’s comment about the degree of knowledge among the fans in the stands. In Montreal those around us were conversant and savvy about every aspect of the sport – so much so that if he deigned to venture among us, he would have been dropped on his head far below, among the empty beer tins.

      For the good of the sport….

    29. Sergey Martyn
      12th July 2015, 15:08

      Bernie Alzhemierstone…

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