James Allison, Ferrari, Spa-Francorchamps, 2015

Allison not returning to Renault

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In the round-up: James Allison will not return to former team Renault following his departure from Ferrari.

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Has Nico Rosberg improved as a driver at all this year, or is the reason he’s leading the championship only down to Hamilton’s misfortune?

I’m not taking anything away from Rosberg, he has driven very well. But I fail to understand the race craft Paddy Lowe alludes to.

Mercedes have had random starts and random engine failures. These alone are responsible for the results we’ve witnessed and the tally on the points table between the main competitors.
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Fernando Alonso won the Japanese Grand Prix on this day ten years ago after championship rival Michael Schumacher’s engine failed:

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  • 44 comments on “Allison not returning to Renault”

    1. Now as I see it, I think I know why Ferrari decided to keep Kimi, among many possible reasons. He is a known quantity. It was expected (I think by everyone) Seb was going to outscore Kimi last year. Maybe not many expected 3 victories from him, maybe not even Marchionne. Now the whole team (I will talk about Seb later) is underperforming: We can remember how Australia and Canada were led by Sebastian but lost because of strategy. We remember how in Barhain, his car was not even able to start the race. And how Kvyat took him out in China.
      By that, I don’t deny that Seb made a horrible mistake last race in Malaysia, and that he was plain dull in Austria. But I would say that, more often than not, the guy gives his all to the race and to his team. I think these quite hard words must be said just inside the team. But of course, this is Ferrari, and politics are a big part of their game. It has always been that way. But they should be honest to themselves and realize that when Ferrari was still limping after a poor 2014, Seb punched above their weight and amassed not only 3 wins, but many podiums as well. He would have more podiums this year if it weren’t for many issues impossible for him to manage, the things I first mentioned.
      But Ferrari are already looking for a scapegoat because they are trailing behind Red Bull.

      1. It’s quite telling that they never said something like Alonso has to earn his contract while he was at Ferrari :)

      2. Kvyat did not take out Vettel in China any more than VErstappen or Rosberg did in Malaysia @omarr-pepper. Apart from that, yeah, the team does seem to be in a bit of a traditional mess. The car is not up to it, Vettel has had quite a few issues this year, and when not the team could be relied on to give at least one of their drivers (it was more often Kimi suffering from being no.2 in the team) a bad strategy, but especially in their best chance of victory they early in the season they made the wrong calls.

        Compared to his last season, when he was on of the best drivers out there, this one certainly is a bit of a letdown. Vettel has seemed to want to push far too much in the first corners in the hope of making up for the car not being up to things.
        And I do get Mr. Wellarrived to being a bit miffed about Vettel trying to build the team around him, just like Schumacher did (and like Alonso tried) but really the bigger mess is coming from the top down, rather than from the bottom up.

        1. @bascb sorry, you are right. It was another race. Sochi I think? The race which made Kvyat lose his seat and go to Toro Rosso.

          1. Yes, @omarr-pepper that race where Kvyat got over enthusiastic (a bit like Vettel has in the races after that) at the first corner and then upped the misery by hitting Vettel again to end his race a few hundreds of meters further again was Sochi.

            Miki, I think that with many teams they don’t need the driver to bring the whole team with him. But for Ferrari, yeah, they are solidly back into the “not working immediately, fire. And replace by an Italian from somewhere inside the team” rithm. I don’t see them getting out of this either unless they start actually building up a quality crew of people who can work on it without being disrupted or blamed every time “next season will be better” doesn’t result in race wins right away.

        2. @bascb
          If a driver wasn’t allowed to build the team around him how on earth they are ever going to win is that Marchionnie and Arrivabene understand after spending years or year in F1. The Heads of ferrari only see 2000 as the year Schumi joined Ferrari and won straight away instead of 1996 and demand wins every year yet they never build what is required to win consistently.

      3. @omarr-pepper

        To be completely honest, Vettel hasn’t been that special this season. I would go as far as saying that Kimi has been the better driver in the second half of the season.

        When you are the #1 driver at Ferrari, you are expected to deliver great results every race weekend, punch above the car’s weight and absolutely destroy the #2 driver. Alonso was never asked to ‘earn’ his place at Ferrari because he never had a problem managing those expectations. This season, Vettel has failed to do any of the above, so it comes as no surprise that he is asked to step up his game.

        1. Alonso had n°1 status and his input drove the engineering in the wrong direction. Fernando could manage the mess better than Kimi, but that isn’t what counts in the end. What counts is the results at the finish line, which meant no WDC’s for Alonso of Vettel in a Ferrari…

      4. @omarr-pepper, reading through the article, it looks more like the team are talking about the need for Vettel to maintain a certain level of performance – presumably against his team mate – over the 2017 season as a condition of their contract extension talks, given that his current contract ends at the end of the 2017 season.

        In that context, Arrivabene’s comments make more sense – given that I suspect that the team is probably already beginning to discuss potential terms for extending his contract, it sounds more like the team are using the press to put a bit of pressure on Vettel to soften some of his terms (such as some drivers, in turn, have not been adverse to using the press to try and ratchet up pressure on a team to accept their terms).

        1. I believe Ricciardo’s contract ends after 2017. If I’m Ferrari I’d take him over Vettel any day tbh.

          Depending on how competative RBR will be and how the RIC-VES dynamic will develop RIC might want to lead the Scuderia and who knows, maybe then a guy like Newey and/or Horner are ready for a new challenge and they do a Schumacher-Brawn-Todt type of move.

          It’s going to take something like that imho for Ferrari to get back to the top because they are not getting done from inside.

    2. Lee McKenzie should be thankful it is not one of those tube hotels. I heard those are tiny.

    3. I will lose alot of respect for Ferrari if they even dare try and blame their drivers. I am not a Vettel fan, just respect him a multiple world champion and kimi as he is also a world champion, but they have no right to try and use their drivers as a scape goat. They are both very qualified for their jobs. The ferrari team only themselves to blame for their lackluster 2016 season after a decent 2015. They are too weak in the aero department and their engine gains have been mediocre compared to mercedes and honda to an extent to say the least.

      Way too much politics in Ferrari and that is why they will not win a WDC or WCC anytime in the near future (I hope I am wrong though)

      1. First of all. Even the most desperate McLaren fan will refrain from referring to their PU improvements as a benchmark. Coming from dead least to the middle of nowhere is EXPECTED for one of the largest car manufactures in the world. Beating Ferrari or Merc, remains to be achieved.

        Second of all, yes, Ferrari blaming their drivers for anything in 2016, even Malaysia, means that nothing has changed. We have the same old Italian team afriad to admit that they arent good enough to run a front running F1 squad and they need real German or ANY other countries leadership values.

      2. It wasn’t Ferrari who wiped itself out several times this season, the culprit was Sebastian Vettel. It’s his fault with the all mistakes he’s making and Ferrari should keep a driver just because he’s a former champion, please.

        1. At the beginning of the season, it was Ferrari reliability and strategy that denied the team better points/wins. No two ways about that. Vettel’s performance at the start of the season was similar to 2015 – he was delivering above the car and team.

          In the recent few races, I’d agree that its been Vettel being aggressive that has cost them. Now, one can argue that Vettel is pushing harder to compensate for the car that has resulted in the recent mistakes, but end of the day, its down to Vettel.

          1. Ferrari is being ridiculous. They kept Massa for way too long and are now holding on to Kimi for no reason. There’s plenty of others on the grid that would do better. Claiming Vettel has yet to earn his spot after hiring Massa and Kimi year in year out is absolute nonsense.

    4. These comparisons between Senna and Lewis need to stop. They have nothing in common.

      1. Didn’t read the article, did you?

    5. Ferrari did this the wrong way round. This year should have been last year and last year should have been this year.

      ¯\_(ツ)_/¯.

    6. Fernando Alonso’s move away from Maranello is starting to look like a masterstroke.

      In my recent CoTD (Thanks @keithcollantine), I predicted that Mclaren will finish ahead for Ferrari next season, and I see no reason to alter that prediction anytime soon.

      They are a team in disarray, sometime I wonder who is running the team. When James Allison went to Ferrari, he was supposed to be their savior, one who would usher Ferrari into the world of contemporary aerodynamics and overall car design…but he achieved absolutely nothing. Probably by no fault of his own.

      Ferrari are in a yearly cycle of “recovering from a poor season”. When will it stop?

      1. @jaymenon10

        “Ferrari are in a yearly cycle of “recovering from a poor season”. When will it stop?”

        Next year :-P

      2. Alonso’s masterstroke was to goto the only other top team who’s year on year performance cycle is actually worse than Ferrari? Genius.

      3. I would love to see Mclaren outperform Ferrari next year, but that’s just wishful thinking. Mclaren are close to 1 to 1.5s behind Ferrari, and Honda is an everlasting disaster that is just incapable of competing in Formula 1. I would be surprised if Mclaren are even the 4th quickest team on the grid, and I would be shocked if they manage a podium next year.

      4. Next year we’ll see. As of now, he just qualified 15th, his Ferrari teammate 3ed and 1.8 seconds ahead.

    7. That’s a smart yet disappointing decision from Sauber. I fail to comprehend how anyone can prefer this status-quo of using last years engines as opposed to a properly developed second tier of machines or 3 car teams.

      1. Miss Bathing Costume
        8th October 2016, 4:17

        TR did very well at the beginning of the year, it’s seriously cost them towards the middle and there’ll be no relief till the end. Still Sauber need an economic plan that allows them to make the grid in the first instance – equivalent performance is probably a ‘nice-to-have’.

        1. That, and when you consider how poor their car has been this year – if they can get the aero right for next year, they can get a/some points in the 1st half, putting them way, way ahead of where they are this year. Even if they slide away hard at the end of it, it would be a big improvement (and probably enough for them to then move to work on 2018 anyway …).

    8. Just on the tweet moaning about Friday practice & wanting Liberty to get rid of it….

      I know that a lot of fans tend to find Friday’s a bit dull but Friday practice isn’t really for the fans, Its for the teams/drivers etc…. It’s there for drivers to get acclimatized to the circuit, Conditions & setup on that weekend, It’s there for teams to test new developments & for people like tyre suppliers to get data on what the tyres are doing that weekend.

      If you find practice dull then rather than insist it should be ditched or do nothing but moan about how dull it all is, Instead maybe just don’t watch it & only tune in for the bits you find more worthwhile watching.

      1. +1 @gt-racer

        Just as quali is the lead-up to the race, I see FP as the lead-up to both quali and the race. Lots of insights to gather, as well as commentary on various titbits that have been circulating the paddock.

      2. They could however seriously drop the entry prices for friday and saturday to lure in more people.

        1. That would be a MUCH bigger way to make money, not immediately but a long term game. Especially for a Friday only ticket, support races and then 2(?) practices to get kids excited to see the cars in person at a lower rate than the crazy cost main show passes.

    9. Well Its ferrari isn’t it after all
      They fail to win races despite them being in Position of winning and hand them on silver platter and then blame drivers. I never had any opinion on Arrivabene he never gave the impression of Team Principal who can run the team and build on it. This Statement of his further proves me why. He was appreciative of Seb through out last year and now when the car isn’t there and falling further and further behind from Merc and got passed by RBR their Lead Technical Officer left the things changed quickly from he was one of us to he should earn his place.
      Merc has Lowe, Rbr has Newey, Mclaren has Peter Prod, Williams has Pat , Renault has Bob Bell, Force India got Andy Green, Toro Rosso has James Key. May i ask who you have and can i expect you to stay in your place in 2017.
      Ive never was any driver fan but this kind of statements especially when the driver who was giving it all and possibly over driving it to compensate your technical team abilities only comes out from horse mouth which died long time ago barring any driver miracle it will never come to life unless the horse head works.

      1. Miki, actually, technically Rob Marshall is the Chief Designer for Red Bull given that Newey has partially stepped back from the direct management of the team.

    10. I’m curious – how is a year-old engine cheaper? Does Ferrari no longer include R&D costs in the price tag for older engines? Or is it just a simple price discrimination strategy?

      1. I think that is probably part of it @phylyp. You don’t get any updates to the engines, so it makes it far easier to just plan out the year on what engines to use where. And I would also guess that the reliability could be a bit better than with an engine that gets constantly developed.

        Building 10 (or even 12) of the same engine makes manufacturing a LOT cheaper too, so it makes sense that these engines will be significantly cheaper.

          1. I thought the point was that they were getting Ferrari’s leftover stock, which means whatever money they get is basically a bonus.

      2. The real reason is that the engines are of no use to the manufacturer, because successive upgrades have rendered them obsolete, relative to the cutting edge. Even if it cost several million dollars to produce, no front running team with the ambition of winning races, will use them.
        So there may be a lot made sitting idle with an assortment of spares.
        It will cost just as much to make an old engine as an upgraded engine.
        The close to scrap value with maybe 95% of the power output of the new spec makes it very good value.

      3. I thought Sauber’s new influx of cash would have helped, but looks like it was only enough to keep them afloat. Disappointing.

    11. I see Sauber using 2016 Ferrari engines next season as a stop-gap measure as they could be a Honda engine customer in 2018. Sauber has been a Ferrari customer almost from their very start in F1. They’re long overdue to find a new supplier.

      1. They used to be a Mercedes customer actually long before they got the Ferrari engines @photogcw!

        1. They were BMW Sauber less than a decade ago, no?

          1. Partially true. The team was semi-funded by Mercedes-Benz at their start but they used 3.5L Ilmor V10’s before they switched to Ferrari.

            1. Yeah, Sauber raced with Mercedes as (engine) partner in sports cars and when they made the step into F1 that connection game with them. Off course Ilmor later became the builder of the first Mercedes branded engines in F1 (and Indycars) and later got integrated directly into Mercedes when the manufacturer entered F1 for real.

              After Mercedes went to McLaren the Sauber team had to find a new partner. They got the deal with Ferrari running a Petronas financed engine from Maranello. Then off course BMW entered, but when they ran away Sauber managed to the deal with Ferrari going again.

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