Chilton: I almost had same crash as Bianchi

F1 Fanatic Round-up

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In the round-up: Max Chilton reveals he almost suffered the same fate as his former Marussia team mate Jules Bianchi at Suzuka two years ago.

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Maldonado: A not-entirely-fond farewell
Contrasting views on the end of Pastor Maldonado’s F1 career:

Great news, I don’t feel sorry for him at all. He had a disgraceful attitude of never admitting his mistakes, unlike for example Grosjean, and was a danger to other racers on the circuit.

I will remember him not for his race win but for his two swipes on Perez and Hamilton on track. I think that’s his deserved legacy.

I’m happy and sad about this. I’m happy because F1 seems to be returning to being a meritocracy with talent (Magnussen presumably) winning the day over money (Maldonado). But I’m also sad because, if Pastor had just been able to learn from his mistakes, he could well have delivered performances like those in Spain 2012 more often.

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On this day in F1

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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48 comments on “Chilton: I almost had same crash as Bianchi”

  1. Whether it is working in the simulator or with the guys in the composites, everything he has done, he has really outshone himself.

    Really nice to read Lynn’s worked on the composites: imo it’s so valuable for drivers to know how much effort has been put into the cars they drive. If for instance Maldonado knew how much time and effort it costs to just make one tiny element of a 50-element front wing, maybe he would have been more careful.

    1. Oh I’m sure he was told on a daily basis, I think he just didn’t care

      1. I think it’s very obvious that he did care.

    2. @andae23 you never know… maybe PDVSA supplied the teams with epoxy resin and he was returning some of the money they invested in him. Kinda like a special secret agent of the epoxy business.

      (Keep the Maldonado jokes coming! We’ll go on forever!)

    3. I remember that both Huelkenberg and Rosberg also did some ‘work’ in engineering at Williams.
      I thought it was part of their program.

      Maybe this is the point where it went wrong with Maldonado.

    4. WilliamB (@william-brierty)
      2nd February 2016, 8:04

      @andae23 – Lynn might not have the credentials of Vandoorne and Ocon, but I have been immensely impressed by the way in which he has applied himself to the task of being the next British F1 driver. He is a professional, polished and mature young man, and win or lose in his GP2 battle with Sirotkin, Gasly and Evans this year, he will have a very real chance of being in a Williams F1 car come 2017.

  2. Please elaborate:

    Andrew Benson ✔@andrewbensonf1
    Notable by their absence from Pirelli/teams/FOM/FIA meeting are Hamilton, Alonso and Button, though. As things stand

    1. I don’t get it either. Were the drivers invited to some meetings?

    2. Pat Ruadh (@fullcoursecaution)
      2nd February 2016, 13:05

      Yes its the Pirelli/Drivers meeting today.
      Apparently Vettel, Massa, Bottas and maybe Rosberg are in attendance to push for an end to cheese tyres

      1. I love how Vettel is pushing the tyre situation in a sensible direction. He really cares about F1.

  3. Silverstone, a cautionary tale for those who don’t already know ; Never sign a contract with Bernie.

    1. @hohum – Unless you want to willingly put all your bits into his back pocket.

    2. What the article should read is ‘Bernie Ecclestone tells his pet motoring journalist the things that he wants put out in the media as fact’.

      Take any article written by Christian Sylt with a pinch of salt – he’s one of BCE’s ‘preferred’ journalists.

    3. Look at the author of the piece @hohum, that is what Be wants the world to think. It could well be a different picture.

      1. Legally, it would have to be, since Bernie doesn’t own any element of Silverstone circuit. His contract is with the race promoter, not the circuit owner (the latter is subject to the FIA only), and as long as the new race promoter meets contractual obligations, even a change there would be none of Bernie’s business.

        1. @alianora-la-canta,@bascb, I’m aware of the connection, but I still think the warning is valid, Silverstone is in trouble because they borrowed to upgrade facilities as demanded by Bernie, now it would appear Bernie wants to sabotage their efforts to extricate themselves from negative equity.

          1. I think Bernie has been trying to get a foot in the door with owership of Silverstone for a long time @hohum. He is trying again

          2. @HoHum If that is Bernie’s plan, he still won’t get ownership of the facility, as it would end up in the hands of the banks. If that happened, then I have some doubt as to whether F1 would be there, since it is less profitable than other racing series, or indeed non-racing uses for that much land. (I don’t think it would end up as a housing development due to its history and location, but a re-tooling as a leisure venue that retained the ability to host non-F1 races would be entirely plausible).

            The banks can afford not to sell such large amounts of prime land for a decade or two while the recession sorts itself out (to make a profit on the land part of the purchase), and by that point Bernie is unlikely to still want the circuit, assuming he’s still in business – he’ll have moved onto other feuds.

  4. The article from the sun is a bit sensationalist if not the least.

    Statements like “teams clamouring for his signature” and “ready to take the sport by storm” are laughable.

    The comparison to David Beckham takes the cake though. I was never a fan of Becks, but comparing him to Max is like Chalk and Cheese. Hate him or love him, there is no denying the fact that Becks always got the business done on the field, and he was a proven champion before moving to the States. From a sporting perspective, some of the fanfare was justified.

    It’s unfair to mention Chilton in the same breath, he was soundly beaten by his teamates in F1 and only managed to stick around for as long as he did thanks to his Daddy’s cash.

    So he did reasonably well in Indy Lights last year, but he will struggle in IndyCar, which has a pretty decent field. I doubt he would do any better against his seasoned team mates in Scott Dixon and Tony Kanaan.

    He is in a top team now, and I will be happy for Max to prove me wrong, however, based on what we’ve seen so far, I wouldn’t put my house on it.

    1. What was it George Best said about Beckham? Something like “he cannot kick with his left foot, he cannot bead a ball, cannot tackle, and he doesnt score many goals… apart from that he is all right”. Then again im scottish so might be a wee bit bias against him

      1. Head a ball even.

      2. he was from Northern Ireland mate

        1. The reason i dont like beckham is coz im scottish. Best on the other hand may have been from NI but he was a great player, and a better drinker, all the traits that make scottish people love ya!!!

      3. Like I said.. Hate him or love him.. The guy always did his job on the pitch. He wasn’t a Zidane or Figo, but he had a place in top sides and did it quite well more often than not.

        Christ! I can’t believe I’m defending Beckham! But you see my point. Football equivalent to Max Chilton would be say Lee Catermole… Can you see such headlines bring written if he decided to move stateside?

        1. Unless Lee Catermole launched an Indy career. Now that would be worth watching.

    2. A bit, @jaymenon10? Starts on a high with calling Max an F1 star, continues hyping him up. Nice PR piece for the kis, guess he is still working to get the budget from others so his dad needs to fill a smaller hole.

      Will be of some interest to see how he will do, that might give an indication of how bad the Manor was

    3. Jack Harvey beat the socks off Max in Indy Lights but he can’t get an F1 drive

  5. @geemac Maldonado could’ve but he didn’t. That’s the root of the problem. He never even admitted blame for any of his crashes. Not once! It was always someone else’s fault. No team wants a driver who doesn’t even admit to any mistakes, let alone is willing to learn from them. First part in fixing a problem is to understand that you have a problem. Grosjean had done so and he’s in a completely different place right now

    No team wants a driver like PM unless he brings huge amount of money, impossible to resist. He has some speed but speed is not enough. He’s a rubbish F1 driver overall

    1. @montreal95, and how frequently would other drivers in the field admit to their mistakes? Quite a few other drivers have similarly rejected charges that they were responsible for a collision that they caused, so Maldonado is in pretty good company in that instance.

      1. Chris Garwood
        2nd February 2016, 8:11

        A few years ago I used to ride with world championship level mountain biker, we didn’t like riding with him as he wouldn’t wear a helmet and was always riding crazy stuff, I talked to him once about it, and pretty much his words were , if your riding of a 30 foot drop and thinking about wearing a helmet incase you crash, you will crash, if you believe you can do it, you will, if you start doubting yourself, pack your bags. In no way do I want to defend Mal, he seemed to be out of his league (after he won that race with such class) (and a way beter driver than any of us) but you have to believe that you are the best driver on the grid, you have to believe that if something had not happened youd have won the race … otherwise, you might as well call yourseld barichello .. or rosberg, or webber

        1. Chris, you and anon(read my reply to him below) miss the point I was making. All the drivers in F1 are arrogant, all don’t like to admit mistakes but at the same time the best drivers always work to improve themselves. Maldonado was the worst driver I have ever seen in F1 in 22 years, not because he had the least talent(far from it!), but because he wasted his talent by his unwillingness to improve himself, to make justice to his speed, to be a driver teams would want regardless of money. Instead he chose to stick his head in the sand and rely solely on PDVSA with predictable results. There’s a fine line between arrogance, as expected from a top athlete, and stupidity. PM has crossed it by a mile

      2. True, but he’s got one every Grand Prix weekend …

      3. @anon I don’t know what you’re talking about. I’ve been watching F1 for 22 years and I’ve never seen someone like Maldonado. Most drivers are going to blame someone/something else in borderline cases, like if they’re slightly the more guilty party. But Maldonado has blamed others for his troubles(not necessarily other drivers but also cars, rules etc.) 100% of the times. He never ever was willing to learn from his mistakes at all. Nobody is perfect and even the very top drivers have room for improvement and do so constantly, or lose their top driver status. Yet PM seemed to think that he was perfect and the world around him is what’s wrong. Maybe he relied too much on PDVSA, but if he was even remotely smart, he should’ve understood that the petrodollars are gonna dry up one day. He isn’t smart though, he’s Maldonado

    2. @montreal95 I agree with you, have a look at my whole comment in yesterday’s article as Keith only linked a portion of it. He had potential and it has gone unfulfilled, that makes me sad.

      1. @geemac I understand that, but can’t relate, since I’ve given up on Maldonado a long time ago. So I’m really happy that a very promising young driver and seemingly a nice guy KM gets a second chance at his expense. Also, per Autosport, Renault are going to announce Esteban Ocon as their third driver, a great talent! Hopefully with a view of replacing Palmer a year from now. Harsh, I know, but I want F1 to be a meritocracy same as you

  6. Can’t help but laugh at Max’s comparison to Beckham.
    One was the ambassador of the sport, known for his talent, success, good looks and media friendly attitude. He was among the better players in the world, probably better than any American soccer player, so it was expected of him to take the MLS by storm.

    The other was the poorest competitor on the grid who had to get daddy to sign a pay cheque for him to remain in the sport. His team decided that it was of absolutely no use to have him in the team, and he went away from the sport completely unnoticed without having achieved anything during his tenure. There was no glamour factor ever attached to him and as far as I could tell, there hasn’t been lesser hype in the UK press about one of their own drivers.

    Yes Max… you are about to pull a ‘Beckham’ on the US

    1. without having achieved anything during his tenure

      How can you say this? If there has been any driver in the past 30 years who deserved his spot more but was booted for no reason it is Max Chilton! Pay-driver, sheesh, mind you this man won two (2) GP2 races!!! He finished every race in his entire season!! No, he was destined for greatness but he was never given the chance. He was like a mini-less-accident prone-Maldonado.

    2. Hmm… while Max was never the most talented driver on the grid, he was at least competent. And the team he was in would have needed its drivers to pay (either directly or via backers) regardless of their talent level. Marussia retained Max the one time it was in a fit state to make any stay-or-go decision on him whatsoever.

      On the other hand, he was one of the least glamourous drivers in F1 and doesn’t seem to have any interest in the factors that would make him famous beyond the realms of his chosen discipline. So less Beckham and more… …most readers of this site know more about football than me, so could name a competently obscure but respectable football player from a high-level national league.

  7. WilliamB (@william-brierty)
    2nd February 2016, 8:26

    @John-h In your logic he remains a necessary evil, but one completely justifiable in the context of Williams/Enstone’s financial situation. A brief look at Pastor’s F1 career would confirm that his participation in Grand Prix racing beyond his first season is entirely applicable to financial inequality in F1 – even in his best season, 2012, his reference was Bruno Senna, a driver that never showed a convincing turn of speed.

    I think the fact that it was essentially considered necessary by Lotus to sacrifice half of their points-scoring capacity by using one of the race seats as a bank is more concerning than any attitudinal allegations your can aim at Pastor. He is a proud man, a political man, one of the Hugo Chavez school of political spin, but equally I seldom heard Chilton or Gutierrez give a detailed appraisal of what a poor job he is doing.

    1. @william-brierty
      I think I was in quite a bad mood at the time of writing that comment. I do think however, whether you’re a pay driver or whether Lotus needed the money or not, to behave like a decent human being is worth standing up for.

      Accusing your own team of sabotage? Driving into other drivers? Not admitting your mistakes at any point? Not being able to change your attitude despite having multiple chances to do so? Whilst I understand your points about Chilton and Guiterrez, you can’t tell me they behaved anywhere close to Maldonado surely…? proud political man or otherwise.

      I still feel the same way, I think it’s great he’s not on the grid anymore.

      1. WilliamB (@william-brierty)
        2nd February 2016, 19:56


        I think I was in quite a bad mood at the time of writing that comment.

        We’ve all written posts like that! I may have accidentally called Vettel a “spoilt brat” during some of the heavier races of his dominance!

        I accept that Pastor has set new standards in personal spin, and that accusing Williams of sabotage was completely abhorrent (something he retracted the following day). However, has Pastor gone beyond the precedents of Schumacher, Raikkonen and particularly Senna in glossing over on-track errors? Yes, those drivers had fewer errors that required a political take, but it remains instinctive for most drivers, in a sport where perception is so powerful, to portray themselves as positively as possible. Of course a willingness to own up to one’s errors is an admirable quality, but that can make someone appear weak when their quality is already in doubt. So whilst accepted superstar Vettel can admit to doing a “s*ahem*t” job in Mexico, that option isn’t available to the Chiltons and Gutierrezs who are battling against public perception.

        I have no doubt that Pastor’s slightly arrogant public persona is a direct product of the media firefighting he has done throughout his Grand Prix career. Does that make him an indecent human being? Of course not, in fact, having met Pastor on a great number of occasions, he has always appeared to me a friendly and ironically gentle man. I will miss that Pastor. Will I miss Pastor the racing driver? No way…

  8. The Blade Runner (@)
    2nd February 2016, 12:18

    I went to an Italian restaurant yesterday and ordered the special.

    After a few minutes the waiter brought my food out but instead of putting it on the table he threw it against the wall.

    “What did you do that for?” I asked, confused. “But sir” the waiter replied “you ordered the Pasta Maldonado!”

    (I’m here all week folks…)

  9. I almost chuckle a bit, when they praise their development drivers. They overdelivered in the simulator, have awesome potential, even with composite guys…

    Then put him in your car.

    I do not follow or claim to know capabilities of Alex Lynn, but just in general. There are so many talents out there, put them in a car, maybe even for entire race. Look at many of olden F1 stories how guys got a seat for just one race and made an impact.

    How does one get in to F1 now? Labour at the factory at simulator and composite shop until all your race honed senses have gone?

    Testing needs to come back. It was ideal place to test out new talent. Stick them in your test car and let em loose, see how good their pace is.

    Or am I missing something? Is simulation now so good, that they have Alex Lynn in a room somewhere, have him run 100 laps, compare to 100 laps done by Bottas and Massa and say.. Aha he is 0.3s off pace, ok we keep them as main drivers.

  10. Honda should have emulated Ferrari, Honda have kept their concept for 2016. I’m sure McLaren is delighted that they can keep their chassis quick as so they can bash Honda for the poor results. I hope Honda is aware of that possibility. Ferrari took a step back, compromised the packaging got the PU running well, and now for 2016 they shall try to achieve what they wanted in 2014, a tight package and a strong PU.

  11. Former F1 star Max Chilton is looking to emulate David Beckham and conquer the USA

    Can’t blame him for being too humble. Wouldn’t it be great if we could say the same about his speed?

  12. Max Chilton – former f1 “star”

  13. Remind me again who was held accountable for the Bianchi tragedy?

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