Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Hockenheimring, 2016

2016 title would mean the most to Hamilton

F1 Fanatic Round-up

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In the round-up: Lewis Hamilton said it would mean more to him to win the championship this year following the setbacks he suffered in the first half of the championship.

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Is there a simpler way to increase the physical challenge for F1 drivers than increasing downforce?

If they wanted to make the cars more physically demanding, just take away the power steering.
Craig Woollard (@Craig-o)

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  • 87 comments on “2016 title would mean the most to Hamilton”

    1. barrichelloberg
      24th August 2016, 0:22

      can we please give him the 2016, 2017 and 2018 championships and continue when an other team is competitive?

      1. 2017 is for red bull to win…

      2. That is like saying the Olympics shouldn’t have a 100 and 200 metres races because Usain Bolt will win it, nor should they have the 200 m butterfly and 200 m individual medley swimming races because Michael Phelps will win it. The fact is those guys set the standard, and that is what every athlete going into those events has known for 4 years, that beating them is what they were supposed to be training to do. No one trains for a silver medal, you train for a gold medal. Every athlete going to the Olympics knew what the winning criteria was for the previous Olympics, and that is what their aim to beat was. I didn’t pay much attention to the Olympics, so maybe every favourite competitor won Gold in their event, but I’d be surprised if this did happen. I had a quick look and it appears there were 9 competitors at this Olympics that had won medals at the previous one, but I don’t know if it was Gold in both cases.
        Hamilton driving a Mercedes car sets the standard everyone has to beat, it’s the responsibility of every driver and team to aim to beat him driving that car. It isn’t Hamilton and Mercedes’ fault that other teams aren’t competitive, it is the fault of the other teams and drivers. Yes, there are things like the token system that hindered teams from catching Mercedes, but that wasn’t Hamilton’s idea.
        Rosberg drives the same car as Hamilton does, and it appears it is his own fault Hamilton is leading the championship now, not him.
        You have to have someone setting the standard to beat, and this year it is Lewis Hamilton driving a Mercedes.

        1. Well said but people just seem to dislike people winning. I wonder if the they understand the word ‘competition’ and its ramifications. Somebody has to win and all the others lose. Someone dominates because they are simply better.

          1. Or because the rules were written such that once dominance had been established, it was essentially impossible for rivals to catch up. (Which is actually the situation we’ve been languishing in for years.)

            1. As far as I can tell next year’s rules are far more likely to encourage a Mercedes car driver to win the championship than this year’s rules do, and yet it appears the gap between Mercedes and the rest will be closer next year than this year.

    2. Is Toto Wolff trying to be as unlikeable as possible? Is he really trying to argue that drivers should just be able to use the runoffs as they want? I mean, why have track limits anyways?

      At least Horner is arguing the right thing. The limits should be enforced the same way for every corner. It’s stupid to have corners where you can go wide “because no time will be gained” (if drivers are going wide, you know it’s a faster line), and then others where the track limits are enforced.

      Also, I have to add that at the end of the article, it is stated that “Grand Prix motorbike racing has no such restrictions”. This is categorically wrong, and they show the same kind of inconsistancy that F1 has. For example, in the Austrian GP around a week ago, the riders had been forbidden from exceding the white line at the last corner (which was modified from the F1 layout because the runoff was too short, making the exit of the corner a lot narrower), but the limits weren’t enforced as strictly (if at all) in the other corners (to the best of my knowledge).

      The long jump comparison is absolutely valid. There’s nothing stopping the jumpers from using the bit of track beyond the line to jump further, besides the rules. If they go too far, their jump will be invalidated. In the same fashion, there’s nothing that stops a driver from driving beyond the white lines. Does that mean they should be allowed to do so?

      1. And also, 2cm in F1 isn’t much, but it’s not 2cm is it? In some cases it is feet. This stuff makes up tenths, which like cms in long jump, makes the difference.

      2. He is still much more likeable than his two drivers.

      3. Well written answer to what Toto proposes @casjo. And as @strontium mentions we are not talking about 2 cm over the track limit but the whole car and then some being over the track limit (about 100 times as much!)

        1. Agreed, but if we were to enforce track limits consistently, it would have to be the same for 2cm as for 2m over. Which I think it should be.

          They’re the best drivers in the world. Stay on the track.

          1. makes perfect sense @fluxsource.

      4. Track limits, by definition, have to have one side which is OK and another side where there are consequences. Even if “track limits” were set to “5 miles outside the circuit boundary” (to take a ridiculous example), there would still need to be a point where 2 cm did, indeed, make all the difference. It would simply be that the rule itself would make a mockery of the concept of a track. There has to be track limits, and these need to be enforced at all parts of the circuits (not just one side of the corner or two where electronic measurement happens to be openly monitored, as now).

        People will always complain if someone gets a penalty – nobody likes their favorites being penalised, or for a battle to turn out to have negative consequences for anyone – but racing without adherence to rules isn’t racing because it lacks the sporting element. If the rules say you need to be within a certain amount (which is necessary, if only to prevent the theoretical concept of racers accidentally mowing over some uninterested person’s turnips mid-race), then those rules must be followed too. Further, if track limits restrictions were removed, there is no longer anything in the rules to stop the winner being whoever gets to the finishing line and doing the required number of laps’ worth of doughnuts and being declared the winner. After all, without track limits, there is no longer a defined track to lap…

        1. Spot on!

          And a better future for F1. Doughnuts at 300km/hr. Bernie can now host races in any parking lot that the host country’s despot deems desirable while charging even larger hosting fees. Thanks, Toto!

      5. What’s a few kilos when a car has to weight 702 kg.
        What’s a few kgs when a car can use 100 kg of fuel in a race?
        What’s a few mm when the width of an F1 can is 1,800mm?
        What’s a few tenths before the lights go out when a race is over an hour long?
        I could go on with this but you get the idea…..

        1. cotd

        2. indeed @petebaldwin, @alianora-la-canta. We need there to be some limits defined in the rules to make it a reasonable sporting contest and not just everyone doing what they like on and around the track (not bad as such, but not a sport). Unless the regulatory body acts when someone goes over/outside those limits they could just as well not be there at all.

        3. @petebaldwin I disagree. Weight and size and time are defined things. A track limit needn’t be. How sterile do you want F1 to be? Why haven’t they put in tennis-like sensors everywhere by now then, ask yourself. I suggest because it reeks of over-policing and a stiffler of racing and of drivers trying harder and reaching to extremes to compete. Ask yourself why they are inconsistent right now from one corner to the next. Because they risk sterilizing F1 completely, I would suggest. And please don’t anybody jump on that overused type of argument the likes of ‘what…so don’t have any limits at all then?’ No, there are shades of grey and most corners look after themselves and drivers have no need to take any license at them, and in this case there should remain some shades of grey when it comes to these slow conservative cars attempting to be hussled around a track while attempting to maintain crucial tire temps. I’m with Toto Wolff on this.

          1. I know and black is white, and night is day. There is no reason to live in reality. There is no white line at the edge of the track. Why do they have to race on the same track at the same time for a race? Why not race what ever track you can go to and have a computer average the times and declare a weekend winner.
            This no rules thing might just work!

            1. You do know that the white lines are not and never have been the track boundary?

              And that they are a recent invention designed to assist TV viewing and make the tracks look nice?

              Kerbs have been part of circuit racing forever on the other hand as owners try to keep drivers from wrecking the outfield attempting to find a bit of time.

              I absolutely think this ‘track policing’ has got silly. If there is a 10th from running off line here and there then it’s the same for all is it not. Why the fuss?

              Probably because Pirelli can’t make durable tyres and want them off the kerbs so we get ‘nice equalised little racing’

              There are far worse things in F1 than the kerbs yet look at the effort expended.

            2. @Drg

              Article 20.2 of the Sporting Regulations states that “Drivers must use the track at all times. For the avoidance of doubt the white lines defining the track edges are considered to be part of the track but the kerbs are not.”

          2. I dunno, a car outside the white line, on all four tires is pretty cut and dry, in fact trying to pretend it’s not bleedingly obvious/exact is like trying to confuse a subject so people don’t actually amount to anything while discussing a matter.

            Track limits are defined by the white lines bordering either side of the road. What is bloody ridiculous is the fact that the FIA cannot follow it’s own rules, yet runs teams out of business and runs up costs coming up with ‘good’ rules, and political correctness.

          3. Fewer corners look after themselves since it was discovered that in the majority of situations, the most efficient method of slowing a car down that needed it was to have a surface grippier than the track the run-off surrounded. Shades of grey in enforcement, in this case, are making things more sterile than necessary, by removing much of the challenge involved in the competition and making it look like the self-styled pinnacle of the sport is full of consistently shoddy drivers (when all they’re doing is using the pre-installed loopholes the way professional athletes are expected to do).

            Limited enforcement, up until now, has been because stewards don’t have 1000 eyes and can’t see everything on the track simultaneously, so in the interests of consistent enforcement have had to compromise. Since the fibre-optic loop got installed in 1999 (until it was removed four years later), a technological solution has existed; the advent of sensor-based enforcement means that it simply isn’t necessary to do selective enforcement any more, and the more challenging, less sterile consistent enforcement mode is now possible. Please can the FIA catch up?

      6. i haven’t read the article but i heard the interviews with the Toto and Horner and the two opposing point of views. Both aare right, me, for the sake of sporting i’m of Horner’s opinion but i think this argument was lost when they decided to lower the kerbs years back in the interest of safety. There will be no going back to higher kerbs. Unless they use gravel or grass outside the track limits, drivers will go over them and they should.
        Once you something for safety you can not take it back.

    3. Re cotd…

      Add in making the cars lighter and significantly reduce aero….

      That should help

    4. As highlighted by that tweet from Tiff Needel, more downforce is the solution the big teams heavily invested in aero development came up with to “improve F1”. It might make for more G-forces in cornering putting more strain on drivers, but the cars will be stuck to the track even more, making mistakes less likely and going flat out all over the place (probably also completely ignoring the track limits while doing so) far too easy.

      By now there is not much sense in fighting those rules though, so let us just hope that more teams come up with solutions that end up with all of them being more or less as fast and fighting for things on track.

      1. It will also make them more reliant on down force for cornering speed, which will result in following closely being more difficult.

        1. as I have said before, formula 1 needs less down force and not more.

          1. Agreed

        2. Yep, I too expect to see that happening even more next year.

          1. @bascb Of course I could be wrong, but I don’t think it is time yet to decide such dire straits for F1 with these reg changes.

            It is not all about aero…far from it. Has everyone missed the fact that much of the added downforce is coming from floor work and rear diffuser work, as in, ground effects? Have the larger tires not made anyone confident a driver could actually follow a car, in it’s dirty air, without destroying the tires and potentially even the entire day’s strategy as per the current way?

            My goodness F1 can never win if even some positive changes that seem to show they are getting it, get shot down months before any of us have even had a chance to see how these changes will translate on the track.

            I envision the possibility that the larger tires will create enough drag that teams will be forced to run less wing if they want to maintain any kind of respectable straight line speeds. Less wing (possibly), more ground effects, sturdy tires…I simply don’t get the negativity towards these things. Surely things cannot, with the changes about to occur, be worse than the F1-lite processions we’re having now? Surely just the fact that the drivers might actually have to break a sweat next year is something to cling to? Making it sound like the cars will be on rails, easy peasy, with corners taken flat, is ridiculous. The tweet is so general and doesn’t even allow that buddy who is taking one extra corner at Spa flat, might actually be being taxed and might actually be doing so with another car right in front of him and one right behind.

            I’m no F1/FIA apologist, but I certainly give them credit for making what I think is some positive changes, and am at least willing to wait a few races into the season next year to see what they’ve done.

            1. Drivers still won’t be able to attack/follow with even new tyres until they get rid of the ‘Thermal Degradation’ in the tyre and make the degradation purely wear related. Until then its all a bit of a farce with drivers only being able to push for a few corners, not a whole race. I hope I am wrong but expect to be proven correct next year. Oh well, fingers crossed anyway, isn’t that the FIA way? :-)

            2. The floor is nice and all, but the larger diffuser is certain to make for a huge wake of unstable air behind cars. It will probably be usefull for a tow on straights with the large tyres, but because the front wing will still be critical to how the DF is formed for the whole car, that will almost certainly lead to issues following close in corners @robbie.

              Personally I see this change they made not as a positive but as another of those ill informed knee jerk things F1 gets into far too often. Had they decided to stick with the current aero, teams would be converging on solutions, getting closer together, and allowing the smaller teams to catch up. But the rich teams, who can afford it, chose to “make the cars look fast” and focus even more on expensive aero solutions and a complete reboot of aero details.

              Yes, the larger tyres will probably help at least introduce more mechanic grip and a lot of drag might motivate to take off wing, but Red Bull showed in the past that if you are fast enough in the corners, you can get away with high drag on the straights on most tracks. Luckily Pirelli is at least trying to make the tyres last, so that is another positive.

              I am not negative, but I do really not expect this to “solve” F1 or even get closer to improving it overall, because the real issue – only a few teams being able to really compete – is only getting worse. I do hope that it will turn out fine, I would love to see better racing and the drivers being excited.

            3. @bascb Fair enough. I’m glad you have hope but it sounds like your mind is already made up. I don’t know that these changes are meant to solve F1 instantly but as I have said it can’t be worse. Sticking with what they have would only mean more of the same bad tires so a bit more convergence of performance would only mean a tighter procession imho. We’ll just have to see, and that’s my main point. If it is as dire as you predict then at least they’ll be on drastically different tires from which to then tweek things and make it better. The current format is terrible. Just being on real tires for a change should do wonders.

            4. I agree with you that the tyres being durable (let’s hope the pessimists saying Pirelli is not able to do them aren’t right) will be a game changer.

              For the rest, I don’t think the current format is as bad as you seem to imply, so I guess I do not feel the “any change will be an improvement” vibe in favour of these changes.

              Almost certainly we will see some changes/shifts next year, some will hail it as the best ever at the start, half of them will then start complaining (together with Brundle and Crofty complainging about cars unable to follow close and no strategic variance with these durable tyres) and overall the bickering will just go on.

            5. @bascb Lol yeah I’m sure the bickering will go on. I’m confident Pirelli can make any tire. It comes down to motivations and mandates by F1, and appropriate testing time for Pirelli. I’m sure they have the physical and scientific ability to make anything they’re asked to make.

              My main issue with the current format is the inability for a car to pass another without either DRS or being on different tires or tires in drastically different states. I look forward to tires being less the story, and more time spent watching cars on the track that are racing each other on a more equal footing in terms of tire compound, and tire states. It needs to be more in the hands of the drivers again, and a move away from the guy gaining the first corner and the lead running away from it due to clean air and thus the lack of need to worry about dirty air ruining front tires and the driver therefore handcuffed and stifled.

    5. Why would this title mean anymore to Lewis? We hear the same crap every year and each championship is becoming an easier cake walk for him.

      1. @giggsy11 A journalist is asking him a question which he then answered. The wording, the nuance, the interpretation and the presentation are up to the journalist and his editor.

        If Lewis didn’t answer him, some would be calling him out for being rude.

        1. Evil Homer (@)
          24th August 2016, 13:36

          Also he wouldn’t mind matching Seb’s total wouldn’t he!!
          Lewis see’s himself as the best driver on the grid (just like they all do) so would hate to see Seb one ahead just as he loves to see Alonso one behind.

      2. @giggsy11 Not entirely sure how you think his season this year has been easier than 2015. To be fair he had a pretty shocking start to the season for Mercedes terms, most of which wasn’t his fault, only really 1 bad start for his own part that cost him.

        Reliability it would seem it holding up ok now and that’s enabling his performance to be shown. It would stand to reason that something that has been harder to get will feel more special than something that wasn’t as hard.

      3. @Giggsy11….

        I don’t think any of Lewis’ title were an easy cake walk as those won by the guy in your avatar picture from 00-04.

        Just saying…..

        Try and understand the context of his comment and not look at it so literally…

        1. You’re joking, right? The last few years have seen dominance the likes of which has never been seen in F1, making even the McLaren Honda years look like the pinnacle of competition.

        2. I believe 2008 meant the most, I don’t know what he’s on about to be honest but then again I’m not him so I don’t know.

          All I can say is if I win Wimbledon, or win a gold medal, or win a table tennis tournament at Slough town hall… it’s the first time I do it that means the most.

      4. probably because he’s had to come from an almost 2 race deficit and has a power unit disadvantage in terms of amount available without penalties @giggsy11 it has certainly been his most difficult title fight yet, 2008 was tough but he didn’t have things like power unit disadvantages

        1. he certainly had a race victory stripped from him in 2008 though under very dodgy circumstances which could’ve cost him the championship

        2. Looking at the first half of the season these last 3 years, so far I don’t really find 2016 to be a more difficult title fight for Hamilton than 2014 or 2015 were. In 2016 Hamilton entered the summer break with a 19 points lead, in 2015 – despite being considered his most dominant season – he only had a 18 points lead entering the summer break, and in 2014 he wasn’t even leading the championship at that point of the season.

          The only reason 2016 seems more disputed is because the fluctuations in driver performance and car reliabilty swung in Rosberg’s favour in the first four races in a row this year, giving him an impressive point lead. But after 12 races these fluctuations have started to average out and it’s clear nothing has changed: Hamilton’s and Rosberg’s respective performance levels are similar to what they have been the previous 2 years.

          1. I think Hamilton is looking to the future – Rosberg has more units of everything – one failure Hamilton has a grid penalty – I think the second half of the season will be hard to win for Lewis :(

      5. @giggsy11 – It’s because as an answer to a journalist’s question, what he said sounds better than “Nah – I have won titles under extreme pressure. This one has been relatively easy but what can you do?”

        1. I do think that this year must feel to him like he has had more of a fight on his hands than last year. And then isn’t the last title alway the best :-)

    6. @giggsy11 You really consider the first half of this season to have been an ‘easier cake walk’ for Lewis Hamilton?

      1. Honestly, when his car hasn’t failed him and Nico hasn’t crashed into him – yeah. I can’t remember him having any pressure from behind all season!

        1. Not to mention a few more crashes, and the likelihood of penalties. Which I think Merc should not plan to take at Spa. He could win it, and get maximum points. Who knows what will happen later on.

        2. That’s like remarking on a car crash survivor, “Apart from his heart stopping three times at hospital and 8 months physiotherapy for his crushed ankles, yeah, he made it without a scratch.”

          Impeccable logic, @petebaldwin. ‘Honestly’…

    7. The track limits discussion bothers me a great deal having watched some clips from late-90’s races the other day. The topic was never brought up back then because if the driver didn’t “obey track limits” then they retired due to being stuck in a gravel trap or tyre wall.

      How disappointing it is to watch the cars racing around the “car park” circuits today. Even the great tracks such as Spa and Monza have now been numbed by the removal of thrilling gravel traps or grass. There was always such a thrill knowing that the slightest mistake would be punished.

      I appreciate that some of them were removed for safety reasons, and I don’t want to see cars digging in and barrel rolling, but I can’t believe there isn’t a solution somewhere in between.

      1. I keep saying it, but Jelly on the outside of corners is the answer. Or maybe double sided tape I am not sure. We can’t have gravel traps as they are dangerous, so I can see why we are where we are at now. White lines are hard to police and are difficult for fans to understand. So put jelly or water out there which will slow them down. Otherwise put something sticky out there instead. Safety is maintained and so are the track limits. Sounds stupid I know, but no less stupid than us talking about track limits.
        But seriously, the run off areas need to be safe, but they also need to penalise driver for going there. Something that ends up on the tyres or slows them down, but won’t kill them may be the right solution. Reduce the grip out wide. They will avoid it then and we can get on with discussing more important things like who is the best driver.

        1. I was watching so endurance racing the other day that was held at Paul Ricard. They had an abrasive paint in certain sections and the drivers who regularly went over the lines in those sections ended up with punctures. That is an easy way to keep them on the straight and narrow! Paint, easy to apply and easy to remove.

        2. Police stingers just outside the white lines 😀😀😀
          Give you just enough time to get back to pits at reduced speed before a complete flat!!

      2. I agree – I really do miss the gravel traps.

        Like you I understand why they’ve been removed but there’s no reason why track limits can’t be enforced. They have already started putting sensors on some corners (ones where an advantage can be gained) – surely it simply a matter of 3 strikes … 4th one you get a drive through.

        It’s used in other formats, the rule applies to everyone equally, where’s the problem?

      3. ColdFly F1 (@)
        24th August 2016, 11:04

        Fully agree @ben-n.
        And I’ll keep on fighting for ‘digital gravel’: as soon as you leave the track the ECU will cut some power (e.g. MGU-K). Same effect as real grass/gravel, whilst a lot safer. They can even paint it like grass/gravel.

        1. @coldfly I couldn’t disagree more. Drivers are already limited from racing in so many ways, particularly with having to conserve everything so much, and with processions. Now you want them policed even further and invite more processions with ‘digital gravel.’ Depressing.

          But I think what you are proposing is not just depressing and anti-racing, it is downright dangerous. As gt-racer pointed out to you the other day, the power cut you propose would be inconsistent from one car to the next, so drivers would be punished inconsistently, but more importantly this would be the equivalent of brake testing the driver behind. I know you conveniently argued that the trailing driver would likely be following suit and also have his power cut, but that’s a huge leap of assumption and unlikely if indeed there were such harsh punishment for line breaching. There’d be a good chance that suddenly a driver would find himself climbing up the back of the car in front.

          1. ColdFly F1 (@)
            24th August 2016, 13:28

            No @Robbie, I want the actual gravel/grass we used to have being replaced by ‘digital gravel’.
            Therefore, it’s no more processional than what we had before. Most of us want the gravel/grass back; good old circuits where offs were penalised.

            And to the objections:
            – actual gravel would ‘be inconsistent from one car to the next’ – who cares?
            – actual gravel would ‘this would be the equivalent of brake testing the driver behind’ (actually NOT because you both slow down)
            It’s not an additional rule/limitation. It is just the 21st century replacement of grass/gravel where we cannot have it anymore (because of MotoGP or other reasons).

            I’m not sure why you are so against such a solution, when it’s exactly the same as actual gravel/grass. I never heard anybody complain about that (except that we do not see it that often nowadays)

            1. @coldfly There certainly were complaints about gravel for being dangerous and for too harshly penalizing a driver for a small error or for being forced off by another car. Hence the removal of gravel in many spots. So you’ve ‘never heard anyone complain’ except to complain about it’s absence, yet you ignore the reasons for it’s absence.

              I envision this digital cutting off of power (which you could never guarantee would be consistent from one car to the next) to simulate gravel, as something that would contribute to F1 being called a farce along with it’s DRS. Suddenly a car slows due to invisible computer interference by the FIA, and that makes for a better product? We’re watching on TV, buddy passes a suddenly slowed car, we all leap out of our seats in excitement, only to find out oh…digital interference…never mind. Why you continue to insist ‘you both slow down’ is beyond me, as is why you think this could so easily be done or even should, such would be the inconsistency of the penalty from digital interference from one car to the next.

              No thank you. I’m for less government interference not more. They won’t be bringing back gravel that I can tell, but they could build kerbs that actually do slow drivers down naturally and therefore entice drivers to stay off them, without invisible means that will make a farce of the show to the average viewer.

            2. COTD Robbie.

              I cannot comprehend this ‘cut the power’ idea.

              My only assumption is it comes from people that have not raced on circuits with 150mph plus and no brake lights.

            3. ColdFly F1 (@)
              24th August 2016, 16:41

              DRG – I have raced; and faster!

              A drop in (turbo) power is less scary than entering the gravel or hitting the grass (ask HAM/ROS post Spain).

              Happy to take you for a spin.

        2. They just need grass. That’s enough.

          1. @john-h And after they’ve smoked that, then what? ;)

    8. Hamilton has every reason to be happy with a WDC if he manages it this year as he has had to come from a fair way behind.

      It will crush Rosberg completely and make life very easy for him next year because there will be no way his team will offer any real assistance to Rosberg leaving Hamilton in a genuine No1 Driver position with Rosberg relegated to No2 driver.

      1. ColdFly F1 (@)
        24th August 2016, 11:47

        I actually think it might be the opposite, @dbradock.
        Based on his performance and consistency over the years it seems that Hamilton is somebody who needs the thrill of fighting harder for a win. He seems to switch off (or more likely ‘lose a bit of sharpness’) when he’s comfortably in the lead.
        I think Hamilton is a better driver as an equal #1 rather than having a #2 teammate.

        This is also why I would love to see an ALO/HAM or VES/HAM line-up. I think those teammates would draw the last drop of talent out of Hamilton.

        My assessment of Schumacher and Vettel would be the exact opposite. They need to be the clear #1 in the team. And the more distance they can create to their teammate, the better they become.

        1. You’ve hit it on the head, @coldfly

        2. I agree. Even though Vettel may not be as extreme as Schumacher when it comes to having his team mate challenging him.

    9. I’m with toto wolff regarding track limits, if all drivers are allowed to go wide then there’s no advantage, whoever dares most, whoever risks everything and goes closest to the grass and gravel will prevail, what’s formula 1 without risk, gambling and daring to go one centimetre from crashing, surely that’s better than going wide because for once in the race your team said you could actually push and then being slapped with a 5 second penalty, no wonder drivers drive at 80%

      1. The wide-open spaces beyond the existing track limits were put there specifically for some safety reason (one that you apparently don’t endorse). If you allow racing on these run-off areas, you’d have to construct another wide-open space beyond that (for safety reasons, of course) and then I guess you’d argue that this new area should also be available to drivers to use without penalty. Where is your plan going to end? If the newly extended run-off areas for two adjacent corners happened to overlap, could you just cut one of the corners completely?

        The logical extension of this thinking is a vast, perfectly plain tarmac area, with a single orange cone in the middle around which all the cars would be circulating. Would you really want to watch that?

        1. Toto got caught in a bad argument, I really hope hes still not commenting on this subject, it’s a rather poor position to try and defend. Not even worth holding on to.

        2. You completely missed my point and got lost in your imagination @johnnyfive, only really do the more modern circuits have huge tarmac run off areas, something which is not very popular amongst anyone, I cant believe you’d rather have sensors to see when cars go wide rather than a strip of grass to discourage drivers from going wide at all

      2. Not having track limits doesn’t increase risk-taking, as drivers will risk-take regardless of whether the boundary is on the white lines with all wheels in, on the lines with three wheels out, 5 metres away from the line or 5 miles away from the line. It just changes the level of difficulty (with the most challenging being the stricter rules) and whether the track is a meaningful item in the race or just a decorative piece.

    10. Toto Wolff’s recent comments about track limits reminds me of the 2003 Austrian Gp weekend where it was decided not to enforce track limits at turn 1 & everyone was all over the runoff which interestingly created some exciting moments with cars drifting through the exit runoff over the kerb/astro-turf through practice.

      There was also the IMSA Weathertech sportscar series race at COTA last year where IMSA opted not to enforce track limits & that actually benefited the racing & I gather its something that IMSA are going to allow again this year.

      1. Intetesting observation. Everybody is commenting on philosophical grounds – and I was doing the same, but if the racing is actually improved, then it should be seriously considered.

      2. I have to admit I found those two races as examples where lack of track limits detracted from the racing, as those going off-track simply looked amateurish and I was constantly having to remind myself that the drivers involved weren’t cheating.

    11. … Lewis reminds me of American teen rock gig. You’re life is so hard and your mum picks you up at 10.

    12. Geez. Track limits again?

      Lewis likes 2016 title most because, he has not won it yet… Meanwhile next years will be even better, unless Mercedes dominate again.

      It seems only thing that can ruin Mercedes run of dominance are track limit penalties…. Hence Toto is on about track limits again…

      1. @jureo Actually TW was not on about track limits again…it is just another article on the subject that has quotes in it from TW from 2 or 3 weeks ago.

    13. Weird, everyone jumping on the other news, the newey is involved plus reading the article plus the official statement from pirrelli stating 3-6 sec faster plus the ruleset being 90% red bull agenda means: red bull champion 2017!

      Max off course :)

      1. Do you mean max outside course limits?

        1. Of course too!

          Really hoping that these vital RB down force improvements means that every corner at every track can be taken flat – there’s nothing more dull in F1 than watching the in-car cam where a driver is forced to lift because of inadequate down force. It breaks the rhythm and flow and racing becomes too dependent on a driver’s car control.

          Of course, there’s still those pesky hairpins and low speed chicanes. The FIA needs to ban them. I’m no track design guru, but it seems to me the ultimate solution for F1 is to convert all tracks to large ovals with banked turns. The combination of more aero and banking will finally provide the sort of racing that F1 fans hunger for. A hunger no other racing series can satisfy, because F1 is the pinnacle of motorsport.

          We’re paying big money to get behind the paywall – we expect big aero to allow the quickest cars to finish faster so we can spend our precious viewing time more productively not watching F1.

    14. As Martin Brundle said at the last GP on Sky, if we are not going to enforce track limits, the white lines on the edge of the track mean nothing. Why don’t we just have a race on the main runway of Heathrow Airport?

      1. While I get the sentiment, it is quite ridiculous though. Drivers, including Brundle himself back in his day, abused the lines at every track I have no doubt. One can reasonably ask why this has become such an issue now, and I think it is because these cars are so slow and so about conservation that drivers are desperate for any tenth (they always are anyway) and so desperate to maintain the tiny temperature window for the tires that they have been taking a little extra license. But realistically how much more license than in the past? GT-Racer linked us to shots from 03 of drivers being allowed to take things to the extreme.

        I think this is one of F1’s smallest problems and it could change with the new cars anyway. It’s all just an addition to the nit picky over-regulation that has become the norm in F1 and I hope it becomes a non-issue next year.

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