Honda target combustion gains in 2017

F1 Fanatic Round-up

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In the round-up: Honda believe their energy deployment is working as well as their rivals’ but they need more power from the engine in 2017.

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Comment of the day

RogerA agrees with Jolyon Palmer’s claim that he’s matching his team mate’s performance now.

Looking purely at pace then the two have been very closely matched for some time now with the gap between them in qualifying more often than not is only about one to two tenths which isn’t bad at all.

I think a lot of people have a preconceived idea on Palmer so just don’t want to give him any chance at all. They don’t think he should be in the car and don’t want to give him a chance to prove himself as half decent so ignore everything and anything he does that may make him look better than they want him to be.

It was the same with Maldonado. Many fans decided he was rubbish so like to make excuses for his win and other good races because looking at those good results objectively disproves there belief that he was awful or whatever.

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On this day in F1

Felipe Massa took pole position for the Japanese Grand Prix ten years ago today ahead of team mate Michael Schumacher, whose title rival Fernando Alonso took fifth.

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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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58 comments on “Honda target combustion gains in 2017”

  1. “I have learned to manage my energy, and learned where not to waste my energy – like on rubbish stuff like reading the news about me, or playing computer games, or going partying.”

    Nico Rosberg, there, hitting the nail on the head why he’s actually not that popular with F1 fans. Still, if it works for him…

    1. He can party how much he wants after he takes the title.

      Maybe Hamilton should take a clue.

      1. Why? Are you suggesting Hamiltons repeated mechanical failures are due to excessive partying?

  2. Nice to see Eason being the ringleader of the criticism of Lewis in the press conference – would hate to see him lose his award for bashing of Lewis Hamilton at Every. Available. Opportunity!

    1. I don’t know much about Eason @optimaximal, but what I do know is that there’s more to it than just leading criticism. It’s not about bashing Lewis Hamilton, it’s pointing out the blatant disrespect and disregard he has showed. It’s unprofessional and I personally can’t really blame somebody for being displeased about that

      1. WeatherManNX01
        7th October 2016, 1:11

        @Strontium I have to agree. Hamilton runs on his own schedule when he can – for instance, he doesn’t do track walks. I can certainly see him wishing he were elsewhere during the press conferences, as it’s just not his style. If it weren’t compulsory, he sure wouldn’t be anywhere near the track. He just wants to show up, drive the car, and go home to do his own thing. But that’s just not how things work.

      2. But yet none of those journalist complains when Alonso, Ricciardo, Button et al do the same thing….Why is that?

        1. Do they do the same thing? Is that a fact?

          1. Yes it is a fact

        2. Ah no. No one else has said “I’ve made a point on my Instagram so I don’t really have much more to say about it.”

          And yet you keep defending HAM… Why is that??

  3. With regard to that point about Hamilton in the press conference, I believe it may be a bit of a tedious fuss, but it’s not really over nothing. F1 drivers very often have to take part in these conferences, it’s part of the race weekend. They might not be great, and a lot of drivers have had ways of expressing this, whether sitting there bored, or trying to have a laugh in the process, but I think it’s incredibly disrespectful (especially being paid millions) to sit there and snapchat.

    I wouldn’t go into a meeting at my work and start tweeting. Isn’t this basically the same?

    If he thinks so strongly that the format should be changed surely there are much better ways of showing and going about that.

    1. I agree. It was being rude basically, kind of symptomatic of an ‘i can do what I want’ inflated ego. Kind of funny seeing the press jump on it though. Eason is awful.

      1. Eason is scared his meal ticket is up. He gets to travel the world to provide his dull write ups on F1 which is a very nice job to have ! He knows he’s becoming irrelevant and is simply trying to cause a fuss to get some more clicks and prove he’s still needed. Drop the presser, provide pit lane fan interactions and live stream interviews instead.

        1. haha..yeah ..can’t stand Eason! He loves to whinge, always complaining about something. Him an Benson, cant stand em both!

    2. @strontium what I find disgusting is that the Press Conference had not even started and the guy was already on his phone. And Alonso was the first to answer a question, and he had Lewis alongside him snapchatting or whatever. That’s disrespectful to your collegues. There are 5 other guys there that would love to do something else. I bet Alonso didn’t want to be asked time and time again about the differences between this year and last year when he shouted “GP2 Engine!”, yet he’s answered to everyone in a respectful way.

      Hamilton was rude just because his engine exploded at Sepang. Otherwise he’d be the current championship leader, full of joy and willing to answer to anyone. The guy cannot hide his moods, and when he’s down, when things don’t go his way, he whines, complains and basically acts like a child.

      The Lewis Hamilton from 2008 was more mature. Hard to believe.

      1. You’re too serious @fer-no65. F1 isn’t like any other job so stop trying to make it sound like it is. There’s no disrespect to the other drivers, Sainz even commented a reply on it. Anyone who gets “disrespected”at that seriously needs to grow up. We’re living in a world where people get offended at every little thing, I mean to call it disgusting is just a massive overreaction. If you honestly find a guy playing on a phone and choosing to digitally interact with his fans rather than a bunch of well payed journalists who wouldn’t hesitate to write negative things about him for more clicks disgusting then I honestly don’t know how you cope with all that happens in the world.

        1. Yeah, I’m being a bit too serious, you’re right Ben. I just don’t like that kind of attitude tho. I admire Hamilton as a racer, he’s a gifted driver, utterly brilliant 99% of the time, but sometimes I find him extremely annoying.

          I particularly hate when people use their phones while having a conversation, or taking part of a meeting. That gets up my nose, and it happens too often these days. I also think that they are more appropiate and clever ways to discuss whether the press conference is actually meaningful or how it could be improved.

      2. I agree that it’s disrespectful and unprofessional. If I sat in a meeting playing with my phone, I’d be in trouble, and so should he. The bosses of Merc and F1 should be taking him to task over it.

        That said, I think it’s being taken too far by a media looking for juicy headlines, and Lewis isn’t helping himself either. It’s all been blown out of proportion, just like his “someone or something” comments…

  4. I think that the f1b****** guy is taking this way too seriously. He should lighten up.

  5. It seems very obvious that the old media lot are trying to make a big fuss out of this to prove their relevance. To be honest the reporters should be happy Hamilton is causing a bit of fuss because without that they’d have even less to write about. Maybe a press conference isn’t the right place to play on your phone but I wouldn’t be surprised if Hamilton reached more fans during the interview than most of the reporters write ups of what was said. Not everyone gets on with social media and some will no doubt see this as childish but I’d rather have something like that with a live streaming fan Q&A in and around the pit lane than the dull presser where every driver always acts bored. One of my favourite moments was the vettel-Hamilton interview after Canada. It showed some genuine driver interaction not this dull forced nonsense.

  6. Well, if Kimi did something similar to what Lewis did in the press conference,he would be hailed as a hero by fans and media alike.

    1. OmarRoncal - Go Seb!!! (@)
      7th October 2016, 1:13

      @casjo you are right. And many times His Coolness has been utterly disrespectful too. Kimi doesn’t care. Never cares. But the main difference is that he doesn’t look as an attention seeker, whereas LH, on the other hand…

    2. @casjo despite that, the guy’s never missed a Press Conference and while he wears his usual “I seriously couldn’t be bothered with all this” face, and starts all his answers with “bwoahh!”, he’s not on snapchat while his collegues are talking and professional journalists are asking questions.

      People work hard to be there, show respect. Specially when you are so chatty when things go your way! Man up, it’s not the end of the world.

  7. What Lewis will have to learn is that media reporters are more important than god and if he doesn’t show suitable reverence he can expect more engine failures.

    1. As an aside, I’ve never seen one of these pre-race press conferences, worldwide broadcasters don’t bother broadcasting them, hardly surprising as practice and even qualifying are not considered worthy to replace reruns of ancient sitcoms and police dramas here in Oz.

      1. I have watched them a few times (like in cases where both drivers who hit each other at the previous race sat next to each other), but really they are not fit for showing on TV. Maybe give them to broadcasters to pick out a few good lines once and again to mix into their weekend footage, but not much more.

        1. @bascb,@geemac, Thanks for the info.

      2. @hohum I tend to watch them all, but the driver presser is a tedious watch most weekends. It’s like watching 6 people desperately waiting for the school bell to ring at the end of the day on a Friday. Occasionally though, you get good moments, so I make a point to watch them.

        The team principal/technical director press conference on Fridays is generally better. You get better insight into what is going on politically and you get a few good technical nuggets if the likes of Pat Symonds are there, but it too can be tedious.

  8. Oooooooohhhhh Formula 1 is so exciting, the Red Bull drivers were side by side for 3 corners…! Please give me a break. This whole F1 spectacle has come down to this, all our expectations are gone. Hopefully they can race 4 corners side by side in 2017.

    1. Well, there was quite a bit of build up before they were side by side… I actually found it pretty good to watch, as well as the race in general.

      F1 always had just a couple of moments per race in the past and that was fine. The difference is now, when the drivers are on their own they are not in the limit and hence that part is pretty tedious to watch… I’m hoping that will change next year but it probably won’t. And best not to talk about drs.

    2. @dutchtreat Same feeling. If those 10 seconds can make up for 90 minutes … it’s worrisome at best.

      1. @dutchtreat @caci99 If you think that nothing happened in that race, apart from the 4 corners, maybe it’s you who have the problem. It was a decent race all round, with plenty of action. If you want to have nonstop action during the whole 90 minutes maybe F1 is not a sport for you(is there any such come to think of it?). You cannot please everyone. The majority seems to be pleased with that particular race and that’s enough

  9. Love the Red Bull driver banter. I only hope they stay the same once they start fighting for a championship.

  10. In regards to the Lewis’s conference antics I think both sides are at fault.

    In favor of Lewis,
    I remember after watching this conference and even before this issue escalated, I was like ,”duh! if this is how press conferences keep going, I am least bothered”. The questions asked by the media are plain dull and are the ones which are asked like a 100 times. For eg. look at Will Buxton, he asks generally interesting questions or another journo (forgot his publication) named Abhishek Takle who asks good questions too but most are downright hopeless. Lewis is now a 3 time world champion and Merc allows him to be so Lewis commands a position where he does what he feels like.

    It was a pain for us to watch these conferences so I can understand what all drivers have to go through.

    In favor of the Press,
    No matter how boring or flat it is, using your mobile phone time and time again is pushing the boundaries. Unfortunately, in today’s times where anything and everything is reported in an instant, coming out with different questions is really difficult. In the past, with the absence of social media, press conferences were fresh as not much reporting could be done between the f1 weekends. Every driver is bored of the same questions and we see like for example Nico Rosberg who just doesn’t let you in to his feelings and would answer like a diplomat but what Lewis did was definitely disrespectful.

  11. What a load of tosh. The written media can roll up their dated ways and insert them in a recycling receptacle.

    Social media is the #1 place the younger demographic that F1 craves get all of their news –… Snapchat is great for fan engagement and Lewis knows it.

    The “presser” is no longer relevant and needs a shake up. It’s the same old tired, boring and predictable questions. It’s the perfect example of how “Bernie’s format” of the F1 race weekend is stuck in a rut. Hopefully Liberty are listening.

  12. How is what Lewis did any other than what Kimi has been doing since forever, his answers hardly make any sense and consist for 80% out of a grumph or an oemph. I understand it’s part of the job and we all have to do stuff that we don’t like. Disrespectful would be not showing up,…

    On top of that he’s right, it has been the same for the last decade. I disagree though it should be the fans asking questions, but maybe if the media wasn’t so retarded at times the drivers would enjoy it too.

  13. Great interview with Ricciardo and the piece with Button is a solid read too.

    1. Agree @BasCB.
      There’s actually a lot of interesting stuff for F1 fans in the round-up rather than discussing the etiquette of playing Pocahontas.

  14. Lewis was being disrespectful to the assembled F1 journos, I think that’s clear. It was a touch rude, conventionally speaking. The journos ask the shallow questions, the drivers give the shallow, obvious answers, and the journos go away and make a series of articles out of a couple of sentences each, over the next days, which we read.

    Obviously the journos don’t like their meal ticket being challenged like this. But they take revenge by making articles out of it :)

    And F1 swirls around Lewis Hamilton, as ever since 2007.

  15. Another day another storm in a teacup over Hamilton. The irony of journos berating the only personality in F1 generating their headlines.

  16. After 2 years in the sport, Honda are now going to target combustion gains. An entire season spent on reliability and another on ERS. I don’t understand why people are talking about Honda’s gains this season. Their rate of improvement is ridiculously slow, and their gap to the leaders is still astronomical. I would be surprised if Honda’s power and reliability is any better than Mercedes’ first spec engine introduced at the start of the hybrid era in 2014.

    The more I read about their plans for the future, the more it seems that they are content about just talking about their improvement from a disastrous 2015 campaign. At no point in time do they ever mention their plans to outshine the Mercedes and Ferrari engines. It’s almost like they are content if the gap to the leaders is not too embarrassing. There is no way a team with that mentality an ever give a championship winning engine to Mclaren.

    This partnership has been a write of since day 1. I really feel gutted for Alonso for having to endure this torture at the end of his career.

    1. Your feelings for Alonso cloud your judgement @todfod. Honda’s making progress, and they target even more for next year. But now they are wary of what they say (remember all the jokes following each sentence from the former head of Honda F1 program?).

      Beyond that, Ferrari’s engine is said to be close to Mercedes’ on power output but Ferrari’s car is far from matching the W07. It may well be the same for Honda. Grosjean said he couldn’t overtook Alonso because his car was too quick on straight…

      1. They just qualified P17 and P14 in Japan. That is worse than their result last year. They are still 2 seconds a lap slower than the Mercs.

        If this is what Mclaren calls progress…. then I pity every fan of the team.

  17. On “Snapgate” (or whatever pithy title you chose to give it) I have to say, while I think Hamilton was being unprofessional by fiddling away on his phone for the whole press conference, the reaction of the men from Fleet Street is a bit over the top.

    All of the drivers seem to hate these press conferences, but they all behave in a professional manner and answer the questions they are asked and wait patiently to leave. Lewis should have known what questions were going to be asked, he could have said “as I said on Instagram, what I meant was …”, but simply telling the journalists to paraphrase his posts for the purpose of their columns was unprofessional.

    That said, the journalists responses are over the top. They are probably a reflection of the fact that they feel hard done for having travelled all the way to Japan to be told the answers they wanted were on Instagram all the time.

  18. Funny thing is, the guys now complaining aren’t even usually asking questions at tgese press conferences, they wait for the written media sessions.

  19. Well look at that, journalist are getting upset when they perceive that the people responsible for their meal tickets show little regard for their presence.

    These are the very same journalist who intrude into peoples personal lives and write disparaging articles about them. So now they’re complaining when someone gives them a little taste of their own medicine

    1. It’s not as if Mazher Mahmood gets accredited to cover F1 races. I think you’re unfairly tarring a lot of good people with that brush.

      1. Not to mention having had to travel to the races in the first place to be there, only to see any potential “reward” for their troubles thrown on social media, ready to grab by every honcho who thinks they can write and claim as an “exclusive @keithcollantine, @kng11.

        These are no paperazzi, it is an official press conference with the purpose of having journalists asking questions to the drivers present.
        When one considers that Alonso answered questions that interest him probably as much as they interest Lewsi in a friendly and forthcoming way right next to it (and did so even when the questions were about having a bad car and the umpteenth engine last year) and even Kimi answers the questions given, it was certainly not good behaviour.

        1. Yea yea whatever. It was not a big deal for everyone to be acting like that. The way they all reacted you would’ve thought he spent the entire press conference on his phone and not answer their question.

          So you don’t consider some of the comments from those journalist rude and disrespectful?

          “Am sure he was bored in that presser but Lewis Hamilton comes across as an idiot. Where does he think all that cash in the sport comes from?”

          You don’t find that from Owen Gibson to be disrespectful?

          What Owen fails to understand is, that the money doesn’t come from him or his colleagues turning up asking the same silly questions over and over again.


          And what’s wrong with that? i mean the general consensus on nearly all of these blogs is level criticism at the guy every chance people gets, even if it’s for something mundane. Let the guy live

      2. Oh Keith come off it, you know well that my comment was directed at the journos you featured.

        Eason is probably one the most uppity of them all. A few years back both he and Hembrey indulged in a twitter conversation publicly making fun of Hamilton, when confronted for it, he blocked those who challenged his blatant disrespect. Ben Hunt, really?

        I never said there weren’t some good journalist in the game, but a lot of them should have their credentials revoked.

        1. By ‘intruding into peoples personal lives’ I thought you meant something more serious than a bit of silly gossip, which is all what you’ve described sounds like. Revoking their credentials for something as insignificant as that? I doubt Hamilton would care if he knew, which he probably doesn’t. You don’t need an eight-figure follower count on Twitter to know to ignore pretty much everything that gets written about you.

          At any rate, I’m at the limit of my interest in this story now.

  20. Not relevant to F1 any more, but here’s a nice article about Mark Webber’s first car. I like the bit where he describes its colour . . .—mark-webber-i-got-in-an-argument-and-they-set-fir/

  21. I sort of agree with the CotD that Palmer has been more on the pace of Magnussen recently. And because it is his rookie season it makes sense that he would only start to get into it in the second half of the year, we should probably look at the progress he has made instead of focussing on where he was at the start of the year and on his many mistakes.

    But I am far from convinced that Palmer has shown enough to deserve staying on the grid.

  22. Has anybody thought that the whole snapchat incident may be a way of deflecting attention away from the immediate post race comments last week? While I don’t think Hamilton himself is capable of thinking up that sort of thing himself, i’m sure the Mercedes PR department are well trained in that sort of Mourinho style deflection tactic and now while everyone loses it over Lewis’ phone, Mercedes can quietly get on with their weekend and their own engine investigations.

  23. Not a Hamilton fan at all but…

    The fact that we’re talking about him taking pictures instead of any of the questions asked by the journalists, shows what’s wrong with the current format.

  24. Makes me laugh all the media throwing their toys out of the pram. If they were so bothered about respect maybe they should have shown Hamilton some in Malaysia instead of twisting his words and outright lying in some cases just to sell papers and get website clicks. Got what they deserve as far as I’m concerned.

    And all the commentators on here crying because it’s Hamilton. Where were you all when Kimi was being unprofessional and disrespectful in … well every press conference and interview he is ever in? At least HAM was bringing some fan engagement to F1. Heaven forbid we have any of that! Not to mention if it were RIC on snapchat everyone would be saying what a funny guy he is. Take Monaco, no one was on his back over his disrespectful treatment of RB and he still came away with second place, not a DNF. Talk about double standards lol

    Of course then it all starts coming out. Reporters saying that they don’t even ask the questions they really want to in the press conference because they don’t want everyone else to get the answers at the same time as them. Now even the FIA are thinking of changing it for next year because not the media nor the drivers or the fans really care for the format.

    Bravo Hamilton I say.

  25. Got to say more people in the grandstands on a Thursday in Suzuka than a Sunday race day in Malaysia – says an awful lot. But also putting Singapore and Malaysia two weeks apart is an appalling idea and I live in Singapore. But if you ever get the chance to go Suzuka all I can say is do it – went in 2012 utterly fantastic – a huge pain in the arse to get to but totally worth it circuit and the fans are insane.

  26. There s one thing I fine quite troubling about it all is that HAM’s and SAINZ banter on social media about who’s the cutest was to me more interesting than anything that generally gets out of those sessions and that s the main danger and sign the format and the common journalist-driver-public interaction is broken. It must be difficult for traditional journalism to accept, but in a PC era (see present backlash), you are never going to get interesting content from old school format.

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