ARTA NSX Cconcept, Super GT, Suzuka, 2016

Button open to Super GT move in 2017

F1 Fanatic Round-up

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In the round-up: Jenson Button reveals he could race in Japan’s Super GT series next year.

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Comment of the day

Haribo describes what’s great about this weekend’s race:

Many of the recent circuits introduced into the sport have really struggled to find their own identity, with many containing the classic combination of long straights entering slow chicanes or hairpins, along with fast and twisty sections attempting to recreate the likes of Becketts and turn eight.

The Singapore Grand Prix on the other hand is a nasty and gruelling race hiding underneath a beautiful skyline accompanied by the night sky, it is a beast that does not care for your love but does command your respect, it is the ultimate examination of the drivers’ physical conditioning and mental fortitude. With all this taken into consideration, the Singapore Grand Prix is my personal favourite.

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On this day in F1

Former F1 driver Alessandro Zanardi suffered an appalling crash during a CART IndyCar race at the Lausitzring in Germany 15 years ago today. Zanardi survived the crash despite both his legs begin severed in the impact thanks to the extraordinary efforts of the safety team.

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  • 45 comments on “Button open to Super GT move in 2017”

    1. Entirely agree with the COTD- I can’t say the Singapore GP is my favorite GP but it is one of the few- if not the only “new” F1 race that has not struggled to find its identity.

      1. *and that is what makes it a great event.

      2. if not the only “new” F1 race that has not struggled to find its identity.

        Valencia: Ultimate borefest of all time
        Sochi: The track which dethrones Valencia
        New Jersey: The race which will obviously never come

        Nope. Singapore is not the only one.

        1. Hahaha- yes I agree entirely about Valencia and Sochi.

          Who knows- maybe with this new owner, the NJ event may just happen…

    2. What a disgrace ! Mercedes have a better suspension design, what do they think F1 is ? Some kind of engineering competition ? It should be banned immediately and they should be severely penalised.
      Yours Sincerely.
      Disgusted of East Cheam.

      1. If they don’t stop them now, what will be next? Developing a PU with even more HP?

      2. Long time ago, some F1 technical director suggested active suspension to be introduced, since it can be done cheap now. This would fix all these competitive advantages big teams get.

        Williams for example cannot invest 50M on big chassis dyno and then another 20M per year to develop sexy passive active suspension parts.

        Mercedes and RBR can and did. Same for Ferrari, but as always they are slow to react.

        1. @jureo “This would fix all these competitive advantages big teams get.”

          Active suspension would actually make that worse as the big teams will be able to develop more sophisticated active systems that would be of far greater advantage than any other aspect of the car.

          In 1992/1993 for example the active suspension system was the primary source of Williams dominance as there active system was far more advanced than what anyone else was running. On some circuits there active system was giving them a 1.5+ second a lap advantage over any other team.

          There is also the problem of what happens when the system fails. There were a couple big accidents caused by active suspension failure (Zanardi at Spa in 1993 been the prime example) & a few other near misses (Berger exiting the pits at Estoril that same year).
          Also worth remembering that a lot of the drivers of the time were actually not that keen on it as it dulled the feeling they were getting for what the car was doing as they were getting less feedback coming through the suspension/steering systems. The mechanics also hated working on those cars because of the hydraulic pressure that was been put through the system (2,000 psi+) & the extra danger that brought to working on the cars (Something Ex-Benetton mechanic & Current NBC F1 broadcaster Steve Matchett discusses in his book).

      3. I really love the constant “battle” between teams and with the FIA to find new “tricks” that others then try to either copy or get banned. So much a part of F1.

        And I would think that the whole FRIC idea, as well as this “passive” dampening will in time get onto road cars too, making it a valuable avenue to take.

        1. FRIC or passive damping is far behind the technology used in road cars.

          1. Every current McLaren road car uses it.

            1. I’m sorry but the P1 uses active suspension.

              I don’t believe the P1 is the only car in mclarens stable that comes with that system.

        2. My 2007 rs4 has fric. It’s not a new thing! Just costs me a bloody lot to repair. It runs at 22 bar or 330 psi apparently.

          1. Yeah, but this stuff they are doing now, being passive and all, could potentially become part of regular cars, not just high performance ones.

            F1 still compresses it into a smaller, more failsafe system.

            1. more failsafe system

              Glad you’re wrong there, @bascb ;-) HAM’s car failed more than mine this year.

            2. I guess that really is a positive for fans of a sport where we have more and more gotten used to cars not breaking down @coldfly :-) Shows mercedes still has some work to do there

      4. The Blade Runner (@)
        15th September 2016, 8:47

        Lewis Hamilton was quoted as saying “It’s FRIC-ing great!”

      5. What is frustrating is that they are already saying it’s too late to stop it for 2017 meaning they’ll ban it the following year. That means teams have to waste money trying to develop something that will then subsequently be banned in order to be competitive.

        1. These politics are described in detail in FIA/BE’s bible: Il Principe. @petebaldwin

      6. I just hope Mercedes gets the same flac as RBR did for being innovative. Too many hypocrites around

    3. I think at times, particularly in the beginning of the season, you could see that the Merc was far more stable than any other car on the grid, I remember at that time I said the Mercs looked “lighter”, I’m certain this suspension set up is exactly why the Mercs look so characteristically stable, level, unfazed throughout all the challenging corners of f1. All things considered though, on performance the Merc has become stronger and stronger up until Spa, (a strange weekend) and now after Monza more in character with 2016. I also would like to note that both Ferrari and Red Bull have looked to evolve their suspension set ups in the same way, perhaps not the same philosophy but the same character, perhaps running the cars stiffer from front to back is the way to go. I haven’t seen anything about penalties, which is good, Aldo Costa’s department is clearly doing a fine job yet I can’t think the Mercs are that ahead because of that system alone, Brackley is doing a great job and the others should do as well to catch them (not that you can do anything a team as pounderful as Mercedes… just kidding)

      1. Spa was strange, higher psi weekends seemed to make things tighter at the front. Does that psi increase thwart Mercedes practices. Perhaps that roll control and the heating up the wheel hub trickery doesn’t work that well in those conditions. I’m purist I’m not going suggest any moves towards spicing the races. On the other hand, all that lobbying regarding high tyre pressures… For all we know technically about f1 cars I don’t know nothing in concrete, it’s just ideas, thoughts, suggestions. What I know for certain, stop the lobbying, sometimes fans actually believe in what an f1 teams wants for themselves.

    4. “These people may take a more active role and they want to sort of run the business but that could bring them into conflict with Bernie.”

      ImagIne that, buying a multi billion investment, and then let 85 yearold lead it on a steady decline in to the future…

      I am sure in 10 years he will be even more fit for the job.

      1. Breaking news: 85-year old threatens to quit. Nobody gives a flying duck.

      2. Yeah – why not spend billions on something and then allow a bloke who has openly said “kids watching F1 is unimportant because they don’t buy Rolex watches” run it?

        Liberty know what they are doing and removing Ecclestone immediately would cause them more problems than it would solve. He’ll quit once he’s requested to do something for the good of the sport or the fans anyway…

    5. LovelyLovelyLuffield
      15th September 2016, 7:13

      Button to Dragon Modulo confirmed.

      Also, Alex Zanardi is an absolute utter hero. 50 years old and still got it. Had BMW stayed in WTCC, he and Priaulx would make for a fearsome combo.

      1. Yep, Zanardi is a legend! I was so chuffed for him at London 2012 when he won his first paralympic golds, so glad to see him succeeding considering what he’s been through!

      2. I’m hoping to see Jenson in WRX, but alternatively, you know what would make an excellent Top Gear segment?

        Jenson trying out Super GT one week, World Rallycross the next, London Traithalon, Le Mans 24 Hours, Bathurst…

        Just saying BBC, you have the bake off money don’t you….

    6. The article ”Former F1 champ Fittipaldi has soft spot for Montreal” is from 2014, LOL.

      1. That journo will be surprised to see a sudden page-view spike.

    7. Just love the Singapore GP race week. The build up is great, most of the drivers/teams really seem to enjoy the whole atmosphere. The city is all awake till the wee hours of the morning and it looks fantastic! The circuit isn’t like Monaco where it’s just the aesthetics, it is a tough circuit and being a street circuit, it’s possible to overtake as well. Toughest weekend for the drivers too. So in case you’ve a boring race, blame it on the cars and not on the track.

      This is one weekend where I even look forward to watch the FP sessions due to the sheer buildup! My favorite weekend!

    8. Pfft… Bernie will just walk away if there is conflict???

      Cancer just doesn’t leave a body when treatment arrives.

      1. more like penny royal tea

    9. OMSE have developed a couple of Honda Civics for the Global Rallycross series. Maybe a possibility for Button to have one of those for the World Rallycross?

    10. Thank you for recognising my comment from yesterday, it’s much appreciated!

      1. fully deserved COTD Haribo – well written. Enjoy your favourite GP.

    11. First up. I don’t hate Bernie. He built F1. Some of his decisions are questionable and it is easy to criticise from the outside. However we are lucky enough to not have to make those decisions, just judge them. All leaders whether in politics or whatever make decisions we don’t understand. Usually the reasons for these are not obvious to us. Bernie is the easy target, but most of the recent problems with F1 aren’t Bernie’s fault, they are the fault of the FIA. I don’t like Bernie, but I do respect him.

      However, watch the video of Bernie and Chase Carey on the BBC link above. Bernie looks old. Right eye closed over. He is also obviously having problems with his jaw twitching and at one point brings a pen to his mouth to hide it. Later he has a grimace to hide it. Every time there is a question, he leans in to hear it. I am sure his mind is still sharp, but his body is letting him down and his mind will probably follow soon. After the 3 year contract, I expect him to go. Not by choice, but just because he can’t keep up any more.

      1. Some of his decisions are very easy to criticise from the outside. Decisions like stating kids watching F1 are of no importance. Decisions like keeping most of the money F1 generates for himself rather than distributing more to struggling teams to make the competition exciting. Decisions like charging so much for races that most circuits are struggling to make ends meet. Decisions like ignoring social media because he doesn’t understand it.

        I could go on but I don’t have lost any respect for him – the only people who have benefited from his leadership over the last decade (and more) is Bernie and CVC.

      2. Bernie deserves huge amounts of credit for what he did for F1 in the 70s, 80s and 90s, but he’s done nothing but hold it back for years now. The world has moved on and he hasn’t kept up.

        1. + 1 to all these comments. He should retire gracefully maybe the end of next year (doubtful).

          1. I can guarantee 100% that won’t happen. He’ll leave under a cloud and will then moan in the press about every single aspect of F1 and Liberty Media.

    12. Frankly, I’m tired of hearing the ‘Bernie sucks because he’s old’ argument. Hate him or love him because of his decisions, sure, but saying that he can’t do the job because of his age is ridiculous. If you’re dumb enough to buy into the idea that old people don’t have new ideas, well he’s had TONS of new ideas, and most people don’t like them (myself included). But they’re still innovative. He’s pushed forward to new tracks and put old ones on the chopping block, he’s proposed radical new ideas like that quali format earlier this year, and sprinklers on the tracks, and everyone around him says he’s the shrewdest businessman they know. There’s nothing stodgy and ‘old’ about him except his appearance.

      Now, imagine that you replace the word ‘old’ with ‘black’ or ‘female’. Oh, he’s too black to run the sport, because he won’t represent the majority of fans. Yeah, you could back it up ‘scientifically’ (I should know, I’m a social anthropologist), and prove it’s ‘true’. But people would flip. Whereas, it’s okay to be prejudice towards old people. In the end, so many of you are choosing to judge the man based on age, which is no different than gender or race, instead of only on his actions. Hey, I know, let’s rag on handicapped people next.

      1. That’s fair comment. To extend your point I have found myself backing away from here a few times this season, unwilling to spend the time fighting the over-the-top anti-Nico tidal wave after a few race events, which has now recently been replaced by the anti-Max tidal wave. One sucks and is not worthy of the Mercedes seat (in spite of Mercedes themselves re-signing him) and the other is a hot headed kid, too young for F1, allowed in prematurely. Both are and will be highly intelligent, famous, wealthy, and successful athletes. And to many around here the new regs for 2017 already suck.

        As to BE, I’ll assume a share of the age-ism comes from his lack of understanding of social media, which has been so youth driven it is somewhat understandable, not that he couldn’t have gathered some people around him to get up to speed though, or at least to get F1 up to speed in that regard. I think he just couldn’t see how he could make money from people getting stuff for free on social media.

      2. I think his age might contribute to his short-term perspective and that his extreme longevity at the helm probably correlates well with the term ‘jaded’. But, like Mugabe, my usual conclusion when I have to consider him is that he should go because he’s corrupt and self serving.

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