Final F1 seat for 2016 to go to Haryanto

F1 Fanatic Round-up

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In the round-up: Rio Haryanto is set to be confirmed as Pascal Wehrlein’s team mate at Manor for 2016.

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Comment of the day

Has Sebastian Vettel hit upon in important factor in F1’s declining popularity by pointing out how complicated it has become?

Formula One is far too complicated. Try and explain the 2016 tyre regulation to any casual or someone who isn’t a fan of the sport. With every regulation change the sport has gone through since 2010, F1 has proved nothing other than the fact that it is run by absolute idiots.

There’s a good reason to why simple sports (football, basketball) who have rules that can easily be explained to anyone are so popular and appease to such an large global audience.

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Keith Collantine
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97 comments on “Final F1 seat for 2016 to go to Haryanto”

  1. Good for Haryanto: Manor has already done this with Bianchi and Chilton. They got the money from Indonesia and the talent from Mercedes, so it works out for them. Not the first time it’s happened…

    About that Motorsport Magazine article, it was fascinating to read and just amaizing that everything fell together for Ferrari in the end. A brilliant move by Montezemolo and Co. That’s one side of F1 that’s always interesting to read: I remember reading Peter Warr’s excelent autobiography and the chapter about the negotiations with Senna was fantastic.

    Also, replying to @Kingshark ‘s COTD: motorsport is always hard to explain to people that don’t know anything about it. Driving in racing conditions is something so difficult and so different from normal driving that the general public has a hard time understanding it: it’s not running and kicking a ball, which we can all do, regardless of the outcome. Driving a racing car involves undestanding a lot from the car, the physics of it, the conditions, and then there’s the rules. It’s a huuuge task to learn such a thing while sitting in front of the telly.

    F1 might be just a little bit harder than other disciplines. But I’d apply what you say to all motorsport: it just doesn’t reach the masses as well as other sports.

    1. Good for Haryanto? Maybe. I guess this is about as good as it was going to get for him so just being in F1 is an achievement. Bad for Wehrlein though, Bianchi set the bar for how completely you have to beat your unfancied team-mate to get noticed.

    2. @fer-no65

      Also, replying to Kingshark’s COTD: motorsport is always hard to explain to people that don’t know anything about it. Driving in racing conditions is something so difficult and so different from normal driving that the general public has a hard time understanding it: it’s not running and kicking a ball, which we can all do, regardless of the outcome. Driving a racing car involves undestanding a lot from the car, the physics of it, the conditions, and then there’s the rules. It’s a huuuge task to learn such a thing while sitting in front of the telly.

      I didn’t find Formula 1 that difficult to understand at all when I began watching at the age of 6. The premise of Formula 1 is very simple, it is drivers completing a race distance in a car as quickly as possible while trying to beat each other. The basics of this sport is not much more complicated than football. The problem is when they install an abundance of ridiculously complicated rules.

    3. @fer-no65. Yes, explaining the nuances of any sport can be difficult, I still can’t work out how the scores in cricket test matches can be a draw, but being Australian I have on occasion tried to explain the basics of cricket, which to me is simpler than baseball, to Americans with little success.

      1. petebaldwin (@)
        17th February 2016, 12:18

        But the problem is that cricket is spectacularly simple when compared to F1.

        If F1 ran cricket, can you imagine what the rules would be like?
        – You have to manage your bat as after 20 hard shots, the handle will fall off.
        – If you need to carry out any maintenance work to any of your equipment after drinks on the first day, you lose 100 runs. If you don’t already have 100 runs to lose, you have to run over to the side of the field for 10 seconds whilst the bowlers continue to bowl.
        – Bats now carry out the same basic function as they did previously but now cost £3m each. They will be supplied only by the Australian national team who will offer a differing quality of bats depending on the threat posed by the team they are supplying.
        – Classic stadiums such as Lords, MCG and so on have been replaced with carparks in Syria and North Korea.
        – There is now no boundary line in place around the field – decisions on whether a ball has crossed the line or not will be decided by a panel following the match.
        – In order to increase runs, batters can now press a button on their bat that automatically hits the ball.
        – The classic sound of “leather on willow” has been replaced by an inaudible low thud.
        – The best players in the world are slowly replaced by rich people who buy a spot on the team.

        Does anyone fully understand the tyre rules for next year? Did anyone understand the token system? Could anyone work out the penalty system last year? Does anyone understand why going off the track and not having to slow down isn’t gaining an advantage when previously, they would have lost a load of time?

        1. the difficulty to understand and thrill new f1 watchers is also due to new situations which are the only source of exitement generated by actual rules.

          If you take a situation where the lead twi drivers are laping at around the same time and the second can’t pass. The second switch to medium tyres and keep upbthe pace with the front runner, he has pretty good chances to pass by the next stint when the situation is inverted which will be a good and thrilling situation for most f1 fans but won’t for a non fan as for him the situation is unchanged. Juste to provide an example.

          i think football or basketball are easy to understand because we have always known it and learn the rules progressively but they ain’t that simple. However watching those sport can be enjoyable without understanding all of them because the goal is to outscore your opponent and teams usually do their best for it. While f1 drivers are not pushing to the max at all time and that can be feeled when watching a race which won’t probably hook a newcomer.

        2. Is F1 really that complicated as you guys are making out? It’s just 20-odd drivers driving around racetrack and whoever is quickest wins. Seems pretty simple to me. For a casual fan some of the rules might be confusing but the vast majority of them their interest wouldn’t venture that far as to be interested in engine tokens etc.

        3. Does anyone fully understand the tyre rules for next year?

          The basics are pretty simple, the rest not much more complicated. Yes, they are over complicated in my opinion, and I still don’t see why we need them to run multiple tyre compounds in a race, but they are not as complicated as people make out. The way they worded them, however, was gobbledegook.

          Did anyone understand the token system?

          Yes. To change a part of an engine cost a number of tokens. The manufacturers had a limited number of tokens to use. So, they could change anything they wanted, but only up to that number of tokens. What’s difficult to understand about that?

          1. It’s not the fact that they are complicated that annoy me but the fact you must know the rules to enjoy a f1 race

          2. @jeanrien Except you don’t need to understand all the rules to enjoy a race.

            Drivers all drive around and whoever finishes first wins
            sometimes they will stop for new tyres

            You only need to delve into the rules if you are a fan and interested in more than just race day.

  2. I’m surprised the indonesian oil company has the money to throw away backing an average driver. what with the oil industry suffering.

    1. “Suffering” is a relative term. The mountain of cash the oilindustry is sitting on is bigger than any of the other F1 sponsors.

    2. @sato113 And that’s not considering how much crude oil we export only to be imported back as petrol, etc……

      (Indonesia’s a net importer of petroleum…..)

      1. who cares, however u get it money is money

  3. Well, when one driver is there on mostly merit, it seemed likely that the second seat would be a driver who brings a significant backing. Nothing new. Wish Rossi could’ve found a little more sponsorship, though.

    Really digging Wehrlein’s helmet. The two flags above his name are a nice touch.

    1. petebaldwin (@)
      17th February 2016, 12:19

      @zackofspades – There’s still the 5th or 6th seat at Sauber….

    2. Is it new news that he’ll be racing #94?

  4. Pros: Indonesian finally have a representative in F1.
    Cons: Rio becames a backmarker.

    1. Cons #2: Even then, F1 doesn’t look like coming back to Indonesian TV

      1. We couldn’t move on from 4:3 aspect ratio..xD

    2. @ernietheracefan to be honest, Haryanto doesn’t deserve anything more than being a backmarker. 6 years of GP3 and GP2, very mediocre results to show for it – even in AutoGP he was uninspiring.

      1. @mattds that’s why I’m still keep my though about Rio should doing WEC with Manor LMP2 or goes to Blancpain GT with Lambo instead.

        1. That would be a good fit @ernietheracefan . I certainly agree.

          1. The recent example: Sean Gelael, from hitting pit exit wall at Yas Marina to winning the last two rounds of Asian Le Mans Series.

        1. @gunusugeh I thought we were talking about Haryanto. I have no particular interest in Wehrlein, and he’s a big question mark for me too. But maybe that’s just it: Wehrlein is a question mark (who has obviously gained Mercedes’ trust) while I have no question marks at all about Haryanto: he doesn’t cut it.

    3. Until there is a news from Autosport, I think the seat is still vacant. Even so, that doesn’t guaranree anything!

  5. Yes (@come-on-kubica)
    17th February 2016, 0:37

    Basketball and Football do have confusing rules but nothing like the ridiculous ones in F1.

    1. Specially American football, I watched a game the other day and couldn’t really understand much more than the basics and stopped paying attention after the first half lol.
      I guess this is how a non regular F1 viewer feels when watching a race?

      1. I suspect American football is as popular as it is because of the higher amount of advertising opportunities.

        1. It’s really popular for two main reasons: the action and the strategy. Every play is full of action everywhere, and there’s actually a significant degree more strategy than association football (soccer– does anyone actually call it association football?). I may not be a fan personally (Real Madrid fan here), but I get why people are.

          1. ColdFly F1 (@)
            17th February 2016, 6:35

            action and the strategy

            with the action being in 10sec bursts and outdone by cheerleaders and the animal/clown costume.
            and as much strategy as child playing with a bulldozer!

            It’s still fun though with the whole atmosphere around it when attending a game!

          2. I think you’ll find fans of football will disagree with you on both the action and the strategy parts…

          3. Comparing soccer and American football is like comparing checkers and chess. American football is one of the few team sports where the coaches are more important than the players to the outcome of the game. I have been watching for decades and I still constantly see new situations emerge for the referees to deal with. The complexity of the sport is part of its draw, much like Formula 1.

          4. (soccer– does anyone actually call it association football?)

            No, everyone just calls it football. ;)

          5. Football is the sport you play by kicking a ball with your foot.

            American Football is the sport were you throw and egg around with your hands, hence: Football

        2. It has tons of adds because it’s popular, why it is popular is another question.

          1. It has lots of downtime just like hockey and baseball, thats why its big in US. Football and racing have a hard time squeezing in adds everywhere and therefore struggles. Unsuprisingly the racing leagues with dozens of yellow flags and downtime is the most successfull.

          2. petebaldwin (@)
            17th February 2016, 12:21

            @jcost – Big reason is that it’s only on for a few months a year. People don’t get bored of it.

            Of course, as with everything else, you’d expect F1 to spot something that works and go with the absolute opposite.

        3. It pains me to reply with this.

          My Dad used to say this, ‘Nothing that comes out of the USA and is labelled ‘Sport’ will be simple
          and clear. And that is because virtually every US sport is entirely ruled and dominated by pure
          commercialism. The commercial side dictates virtually every aspect of any sport exposed to
          American TV. They call it ‘The American Way’, and it’s one of the reasons why F1 has always struggled to operate a sustained presence in the USA. It’s also why European style football
          struggles to compete on major-channel American TV.

          And it seems to me that that sort of commercialism, beloved of CVC Capital Partners and their
          F1 dictator Bernard Charles Ecclestone, will eventually be the death of an already deeply
          polluted F1.

  6. Slightly cynical about this, considering Haryanto is being funded by the same struggling industry that funded Maldonado. I’d be surprised if he races for the full season, to be honest. Good luck to him, though.

    1. @jackysteeg As someone said above, struggling is a relative term. They still have truckloads of cash. And the rumored 10 million pounds they allegedly have to pay is barely a third of what PDVSA were supposed to pay for Maldonado. Couple that with the fact that Venezuela’s struggling a lot more than Indonesia in general and you see the difference between the cases

  7. One oil funded driver off the grid, one on the grid. The difference between Maldonado and Haryanto is that the Indonesians are providing about $20-30 million less than PDVSA did.

    1. lets hope he crashed less than Maldonado

  8. Great article by Mark Hughes.

    Alonso and Ferrari just fell out of love with another. A person can only push so hard, and when there is no end result, you cant fault that person’s frustration. On the flip side, would it be fair to draw comparison to Alonso’s stint at Ferrari to early part Schumacher’s time there? Schumacher build a winning team, but Alonso somehow didnt manage that?

    Perhaps, when Schumacher walked into Maranello, he knew the task at hand. The hadnt won a title for 17 years at that point, and it wasnt really a winning machine. It took him, Todt, Byrne and Brawn 4 years to turn the ailing animal into the Prancing Horse we saw from 2000 to 2004.

    However, in Alonso’s case, it was so very different. When he joined Ferrari in 2010, it was a team that was ready to win, and it almost did, but thats as good as it got. It was all downhill from there. Could Alonso have influenced the team better? Perhaps, we will never know what happened behind the scenes.

    All in all, 2010 to 2014 would still rank as a memorable era in the history of Ferrari. The dogged performances of Alonso in 2010 and 2012 in sub par machinery will be remembered fondly when we look back in years to come.

    1. There is no “Alonso” in team.

      1. There is no “Alonso” in team.


    2. Let’s not underestimate the weak leadership of Stefano Domenicali. When Todt stepped back after 2007 it was Stefano’s team. While he was busy cultivating relations with McLaren’s Whitmarsh in FOTA, other teams were becoming the new players in F1. To this day I do not understand why he caved in so easily on the EBD-issue in 2011.

    3. Not sure you can call that falling out of love with eachother… I think it was Ferrari doing everything they could do open doors for alonso’s exit, AKA, being soft fired.

      Any driver wanting veto power of technical appointments in the team is clearly someone with an agenda, and that agenda is NOT winning but having power. History proves this to be true.

      1. If true, the request for veto power over technical recruits only came after frustration set in after 3 years of failing to product a WDC car, and should not really be a surprise to a team that itself thrives on having veto power.

        1. A driver wanting veto over technical staff is almost as bad as fans wanting to control technical regulations.

          Leave it to the people with brains.

          Like i said history proves my statement on Alonso to be true.

          #nomoreWDC (for a reason)

  9. Just a general comment… but I think it is great to see how fully F1 teams have embraced social media. The additional exposure teams are able to provide their sponsors has grown significantly over the last few years. I wonder what effect this is having on the value of being a sponsor in F1. While it may not be a significant part of the equation today, I imagine it will be in the near future.

  10. About Haryanto’s F1 funding. FYI, that oil company actually only funded about one third or half of the total fund. The rest maybe from various company, backing from some rich figure and crowdfunding.
    If I’m not wrong, Haryanto also have signed with some Japan’s marketing agency so maybe He’s also got some sponsorship from there.
    In positive light, Haryanto could give F1 more exposure to Asia’s market particularly in South East Asia region.

    1. I know he hasnt set GP2 alight, but I’d still give him the benefit of the doubt. I’ll always remember watching him at the Formula BMW round at Singapore in 2009, he was the class of the field. He basically walked away with the title that season, it was pure dominance. Ok, one could argue that there wasnt much competition.

      Hey, wouldnt it be nice he turned out like another Kobayashi? KK came to F1 with hardly stellar record in his junior program, but proved to be an instant hit with fans and the paddock.

      Lets see how he stacks up against Wehrlein. Well, he cant be worse than Max Chilton..right?

      1. @jaymenon10 Chilton was disgracefully bad . . . not to put Bianchi down, but with a more capable team mate it would have been interesting to see.

      2. @jaymenon10 Sorry, but I can’t share your hopes for Haryanto. Even though KK didn’t have great results in junior series, to those looking there was clearly great talent there. On the other hand I’ve been watching Haryanto in junior series for many years and can’t see that spark in him for the life of me.

        I’ll wish him good luck anyway, if confirmed. I’ll be happy to admit my mistake, but I just can’t see it

  11. People hate what they don’t understand. And if they really want to get into watching F1, they will make an effort to know the working behind it. One doesn’t need to understand the whole game in the first few months. Also unlike other sports, here the Formula isn’t fixed. It is updated every now & then and hence one has to read up to get an understanding of what and why that change happened.

    It will never be simple as 20 brawny men chasing a leather ball around and trying to put it in the net. BTW Football’s offside ruling is changed every few seasons (in BPL). Even the refs can’t get it right. Same goes for what is a red and what is an yellow. It’s not followed to the letter by most refs.

    The basic premise has been the same all through the years. The first three people crossing the finishing line the earliest are given trophies in the podium :)

  12. Good news, good day.

    1. Which good news?

      Replacing Maldonado in the sport by someone with even less talent doesn’t excite me in the slightest.

      1. @paeschli I’m always willing to give drivers a chance. Some guys don’t excel in lower formulas but bring great performances to F1.

        Some great performers in other series often fail to leave a mark.

        @keithcollantine Any chance you’ve got some info around who’s been a pit pants in lower categories but done well in F1, and vice versa?

  13. I may be biased, seeing as I’m an American, but I feel like Manor is really making a mistake by choosing Haryanto over Rossi. Alex was the 2006 Skip Barber West champion. In 2007, he finished 3rd in Formula BMW America, and the following year, he was the Formula BMW USA champion, even winning the Formula BMW Finale. In 2009, he raced the full season of GP2 Asia, finishing 9th with mostly top 10’s. In 2010, he did a full season in GP3, finishing 4th in the championship. He had 5 podiums, two were wins, and he also had 2 poles. He moved to Formula 3.5 in 2011, finishing third in the championship, with six podiums, two wins, and he was only bested by Vergne and Wickens, while he outraced Daniel Ricciardo. In 2013 he had his first year in GP2. Ever since, he’s raced at Le Mans and Daytona. He’s had 11 podiums, four of them being wins, one of those coming in his debut year. He’s consistently outraced Rio all three of his years in GP2, and last year, he was only bested by none other than the most successful GP2 driver in history. He’s even been driving F1 cars since 2012, and he’s raced in 5 Formula 1 races.

    That’s certainly 5 more than Rio. Rio was 2009 Formula BMW Pacific champion, and thats it. He only started getting consistent points finishes in his fourth year of GP2. So as a result, I see no reason other than on the basis of financial backing, to choose Haryanto over Rossi.

    1. I see no reason other than on the basis of financial backing, to choose Haryanto over Rossi.

      I don’t think there needs to be any other reason from Manor’s perspective. As you say, the last title either driver achieved was in regional Formula BMW. And I say this as an American who would have been very happy if Alex had gotten the nod.

      Based on last year, Rossi is likely the most meritocratic choice of the 3 guys vying for this seat, but it’s not a Vandoorne vs Chilton comparison here, it’s between the men who finished a distant 2nd and 4th (probably would have been 3rd if that last race had not been called off) in GP2.

    2. (…)(Rossi) he’s raced in 5 Formula 1 races. That’s certainly 5 more than Rio(…)

      Actually, that’s infinite times Rossi has raced than Ryo, since the indonesian has never raced any GP :D

      Anyway, for me it’s a mistake for Manor. I would say as a spanish fan I wish to see Mehri in that seat again, this time with a Merc’s engine in the back, and a much improved car than last year… But, yeah, probably Rossi had the edge, he shined in his five races last year. Instead, they have chosen a paydriver with less talent, y’all know what that means…

  14. Great article about the Alonso-Ferrari siutation in 2014. Although, I don’t think Mattiacci was just bluffing (to keep negotiations going) when he asked Alonso to extend his contract until 2018. I think he and Ferrari genuinely wanted Alonso to stay, but only under certain conditions (long term contract, no exit clauses, full commitment). It was this ‘conditions’ part that Alonso didn’t agree with and left, I believe. And I am sure that may have also been one of the reasons why Mattiacci was removed.
    It also feels as if Luca backstabbed Alonso a bit He talked with Vettel in late-2013 (just after the ear-tweaking incident), gave Alonso an exit clause which was ostensibly his choice but actually just allowed Ferrari to push Alonso into a corner.

    1. Don’t know about Ferrari wanting Alonso to stay. If they started assessing their options in 2013, it shows that neither side was happy.

      I find it hard to believe that Ferrari were disappointed with Alonso’s performance, as I couldn’t see any driver on the grid being able to take the championship fight to the last race of the season in the 2010 and 2012 Ferrari challengers . Up until mid 2013, between Alonso and Vettel, Alonso was the better driver.

      Keeping aside his on track performance, off track, Alonso was unhappy since mid 2012. He had a public spat with Pat Fry when Pat said Alonso could have qualified better in a particular race, to which Alonso reverted that the rear of the car hadn’t made any progress since the start of the European season. When tensions began to rise in the Ferrari camp, Fernando had no qualms in pointing the finger at Ferrari’s short comings. This was the cardinal rule broken by a Ferrari driver. You never blame the team, you never say you rather be driving another car, and you never make these feelings public. As much as Ferrari loved Alonso, their ego was hurt, and let’s face it, the only thing bigger than Ferrari’s resources is their ego. Regardless of how good Alonso was, it was time for Ferrari to plan his exit.

      So step in Vettel, a 3 time WDC who was in love with Ferrari and had bagged enough championships already to win another one with the red team. Unlike Alonso, Seb had time on his side, and the patience to handle a loss. I don’t think Vettel is a better driver, but he has a temperament that will suit Ferrari well, and if Ferrari were to rebuild their successful days, he would fight patiently till the day will come.

      What remains to be seen is how long Seb will stay cool without adding another WDC to his tally. It took Alonso 3 seasons to start losing his cool, and what seemed like the Rosiest of Red Marriages in 2010, went sour in 2013. Honestly, if you ask me, if Vettel doesn’t have a WDC by 2018, I could see him leaving Ferrari. Maybe not in the ugly manner Fernando left them, but he will leave nonetheless.

  15. While I much prefer Rossi to be in the seat (as he’s been waiting far too long for his big break) but I did think that signing Haryanto may be a good idea. While he brings backing, I reckon he’ll be like Chilton and show pure consistency throughout the year. I’m just hoping he proves to be quicker than Chilton.

    1. @mattypf1

      I’m just hoping he proves to be quicker than Chilton

      Don’t count on it too much… Chilton needed “only” three seasons in GP2 to accomplish the same as Haryanto in four seasons (wins + fourth place in the final ranking).

      Now feeder series are not the be-all end-all, but going by that it doesn’t inspire much confidence.

      1. Fair point

      2. @mattds @mattypf1 I think whilst Chilton showed consistency, consistency is only good if you are in the right place to take advantage of it.

        Despite being British, Chilton just annoys me by how un-competitive he was. He never seemed to have that racer instinct, and he never showed the speed even mediocre drivers can show.

        1. @captainpie he even proved in Indy Lights last season, being outclassed by Ed Jones (who done very well I must say) and only done a little bit better than Ed in the last couple of races and then paid his way into a full time Ganassi seat yet champion Spencer Pigot (who was absolutely amazing) gets 3 races at best despite being a deserving champion. One reason why I hate money and people who have loads of it

  16. This is largely in response to Vettel’s comments that led to the COTD, but posting here because posting on an prior roundup it will get lost in the shuffle.

    I think Vettel and @kingshark both make some sense (more the latter) because if you wanted to explain the regs to non-fans, it’s tough. All racing has rules, but I feel like watching a WEC race takes zero additional knowledge aside from that there are different classes competing. Just explaining F1’s DRS and tires/tyres is a chore. And most people will either dismiss that as boring or want to know why implement these rules? (now explain the history leading up.. downforce, OWG, f-duct; grooved tyres and tyre war, one set per race, elimination of refuelling, boring race without pits.) Meanwhile one could sit down in front of a WEC race or LeMans, watch, get up, and come back later without a big problem.

    If we were to take Vettel’s complaint seriously, without resorting to making F1 a spec series (which I think many do not want, including many in F1)… What if they had single-make races on the F1 weekend sort of like the Mercedes 190E 2.3-16 race back in 1984. You could have different makes at different races—a spec Merc one weekend, a spec Fiat, a spec Renault, etc. It wouldn’t have to be at every weekend, but it could.

    This could change up the weekend a little too, to bring in more people. For example. Have P1 and the spec race on Friday, P2 and Quali on Saturday. New guys would still get to learn the track, they’d only lose an hour of setup time (P3) and there would be a reason to come to the track each day. Plus you’d get Top Gear-esque bragging rights between the drivers because they’d be in the same cars.

    Someone please make this happen.

    1. The spec driver idea would be a marketing disaster, Merc pay Hamilton a lot of money they do not want him to win a race in a car from a rival brand and have it shown across the world why they are paying him, same applies for all the other top line drivers. Also having the top drivers racing too much over the weekend would take away somewhat from the main event.

    2. They have spec races, they are called GP2 and GP3!

    3. I’m seeing a number of people making this argument – that the alternative to overly complicated rules is a spec series – and it doesn’t make sense to me. For most of its history F1 has been much less of a spec series than it is at present and at the same time it had much less complex rules.

      In fact I’d say that the entire purpose of the incredibly long and detailed rule book controlling every aspect of the modern cars is to try to get the result of a spec series while still having different manufacturers.

      1. @JohnS F1 did at one time have less complex rules while also being less of a spec series, but that was when the science of making fast cars was less advanced. Since at least the 1980s the FIA has been banning inventions that would make the cars too fast. Ground effect, active suspension, traction control, exhaust blown diffusers, you name it. If you relax the rules today, within a year or two the cars will go so fast that it would be irresponsible to go racing with them.

    4. i have never had any trouble explaining f1. You race as fast as possible and try to win. The only thing i had trouble explaining is most of the stewards decisions.

  17. Aren’t car launches starting today? I thought there was one scheduled for the 17th of Feb

    1. Red bull apparently..

    2. It’s just a livery launch @todfod, not sure what time it is though.

    3. @todfod @nemo87 @geemac The Red Bull livery launch is at 5pm UK time (it’s in the calendar) but it’s already been leaked:

      1. Thanks for that @keithcollantine.

        The livery looks…meh.

  18. As I post this I am aware that I’m in a bad mood – I have had my share of time-wasting idiots today and is is not yet 11am.

    It is mostly aimed at people who do not have English as a first language. If an activity involves a ball – whatever the shape or size- it is not a sport, it is a game. Games are for children.

    Please stop comparing motorsport with games.

    1. if an activity involves a ball – whatever the shape or size- it is not a sport, it is a game

      Arguments for that statement, may I ask? Because they could state any sport with an engine it is not a sport, it’s a show. Is chess (grand master level ofc) a sport, for instance?

      F1 rules are overcomplicated to explain. I can remember when they introduced first time the colours in tyres to tell apart the compound by a small dot… Well, that was a disaster, the cameras could not distinguish’em. Or take the Qualy system: try to explain the available tyre sets for each driver, to a casual viewer…

  19. This just proves how useless the super license point system is. Only one of the three rookies for next season has enough points to qualify for a super license. Haryanto has been in GP2 for four years now and what does he have to show for it? One decent season and three seasons where he struggled to even score points and only got a few lucky podiums. Wehrlein is a different story because he has been successful in European F3 before going to DTM and I think the system doesn’t appreciate DTM like it should.

  20. F1 rids itself of Chilton, Maldonado and Stevens only to get stuck with Haryanto. It never gets better.

    1. @hahostolze We’ve gotten better since Ide so……

  21. Luca doesn’t half took some rubbish.

    If anyone thinks Vettel could do more in those Ferrari than Alonso did they aren’t quite right in the head. Ferrari’s problem was Alonso was so good, so good that the car didn’t need to be up to scratch. The 2012 was simply terrible and he nearly won a title with it.

    People have short memories…

    1. People really do have short memories! Alonso did a fantastic job in 2012; and regardless of whether someone thinks Vettel is the better driver of the two, I really don’t think he would have done any better in the F2012 than Alonso did.

  22. petebaldwin (@)
    17th February 2016, 15:20

    Well that’ll be fun for him this year. Sadly, it’s unlikely he’ll be able to prove his worth in a car several laps down…

    I wonder who is paying more and therefore gets the updates first? Mercedes or Indonesia?

  23. I’m really glad Haryanto finally enter F1. I think he deserve it. His achievement at GP2 last year is quite moderate, nor good or bad (if the last race wasn’t cancelled, he might took 3rd rank). I know there are lot of drivers faster than him deserve F1 seat, but this is the reality we face in F1. Not every fastest driver in GP2 get the opportunity to be a F1 driver. Without proper funding, no matter how good they are, the driver are easily dumped if the principal gets better offer. Yes, I know Vandoorne is a lot faster than Haryanto, Rossi (well, not so much.. but he has more experience). But how about Merhi, last year? or Maldonado? were they qualified?…
    I just hope pure pay driver like Gelael never enter F1, before at least he won something. bah!

    1. Sean was winning the last two rounds of Asian Le Mans Series..

      1. in a ‘road car’, not formula ……

    1. perhaps not ….. Then Manor should takes Helio Castroneves

  24. I wish any driver too scared to race open cockpit would just quit or retire and find themselves a job in a series where they feel comfortable. It’s not like open cockpit series would suffer in any way.

    Why do people need to force their beliefs on others?

  25. Hehe, reading LdM interview…. Awesome. Well played.

    But hey such is life many a Ferrari driver was sacked for comments about the car or engine…

    Alonso is an excellent racer on sunday.. But on monday to saturday, toxic attitude just destroys a team.

    There is hardly a better guy in that sense than Vettel, Michael was right in that sense. And he knows a thing or five about winning titles with Ferrari.

    But hey, as Alonso would say… They still have not won a title yet.

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