Ferrari tell Vettel to calm down

F1 Fanatic Round-up

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In the round-up: Ferrari team principal Maurizio Arrivabene urges Sebastian Vettel to “be more calm” in 2017.

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How did that Lewis Hamilton Time magazine cover go down in the USA?

I sent the link of the Time magazine cover and attached article to some of other USA F1 friends of mine and every one of them thought it is a fake. None of us could remember the last time Time put a racing driver on its cover.

Love him or hate him (I’m in neither camp), Hamilton is fast becoming the face of F1 in America and he is at least putting his name out there for discovery to the American sporting public. He’s doing far more to promote F1 in America than well known and best selling brands like Mercedes-Benz, Red Bull or Honda combined.

I sent an e-mail to the public relations department at the Circuit Of The Americas suggesting they make Hamilton, not Mario Andretti, as its ambassador/spokesperson. Let’s see how far that goes.
Charliex (@Photogcw)

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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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89 comments on “Ferrari tell Vettel to calm down”

  1. From those tweets it’s evident people still don’t understand the Williams logic of going with a driver who knows the 2016 car very well and can make accurate comparisons to the 2017 car rather than a young hotshot, who they already have. Sigh.

    1. 2017 is a whole new car though. I can’t see what knowing this year’s car can help when the tyre life, downforce, mechanical grip and balance are all different. You have to throw away the old rule book and start again.

      Having a driver who knows the team, and vice versa, and the systems probably isn’t a bad thing for testing since it saves a little time, but come the race it never seems to make any difference.

      1. Exactly. It’s totally different, so it will be harder to understand weaknesses and strengths without some consistency of feedback, especially considering the new tracks, too. No doubt Bottas and Massa had input and experience with the 2017 design, and that too would be needed.

        1. Yes. I’ve been saying the same thing. Seems many people on here only look at the drivers and forget this sport is 95% engineering, which requires rigorous and carefully designed approaches.

        2. Correct, they need a benchmark to check the development of next years car.
          To put it simply.. if the new car is slower in the hands of Massa then the 2016 version, there’s work to do.
          You need someone who knows the old car and know for sure the times he sets are a the limit.

    2. @selbbin maybe not a young hot shot, but there’s good talent elsewhere that’s being wasted IMO. Massa retired, he didn’t want to do race in F1 anymore (forced or not). He decided enough was enough, but one of the classic teams cannot get a good driver to replace him? seems weird, and sad.

      Either way, and regardless of Williams contractual situation with their sponsors and pay driver, which obliged them to find an experienced guy, something in the step ladder to F1 is clearly failling. Plenty of guys are ready to take a seat in F1, but once a guy retires, a team has no other option but to pull him out of retirement? Mercedes can’t find anything but an experienced driver too? Experience is so needed these days with the lack of testing that you wonder how new drivers get to F1 at all. You either need to embrace yourself to a sick development driver programme like at Red Bull (even they can’t make it work and they have 2 teams!), or you pay for your ride.

      It speaks volumes too that McLaren couldn’t find a way for Stoffel, Red Bull couldn’t find a place for Gasly, they have Sainz locked in within them too (unless Ricciardo or Verstappen moves elsewhere I can’t see Sainz leaving STR for another team, it’s never, ever happened…), Mercedes overlooks Wehrlein, reserve drivers are also overlooked even if the main drivers are unavailable… it’s a sick system this one.

      1. Totally. It’s not that they can’t find talent. But Williams are evidently determined to have a driver in the 2017 car that has experience in their 2016 car. If Bottas goes, and I’m guessing the deal is too good to pass up, Massa becomes their only choice. They said it themselves. Bottas can go if we have Massa. Not, Bottas can go if we find another good driver.

        1. Roth Man (@rdotquestionmark)
          21st December 2016, 8:27

          Yes but having an old, slow yardstick with experience isn’t going to get them points is it? And yes I understand why they need experience with Stroll being such a liability but that makes the situation even worse!!! Absolutely not a chance Williams will get even 5th in the constructors next season. Renault and Mclaren will jump them and F-india will no doubt stay ahead of them…… The reason I’m being negative BTW is because I’m a Williams fan still sulking! I’m more disappointed with Stroll/Massa than I was with the Senna/Maldonado combination of 2012, which was another wasted opportunity for Williams, a decent driver could have won a few races that season.

        2. Exactly, with every team it’s like science: you want a “control group”. That being at least one experienced driver and his team of engineers on that side of the garage. Except for maybe a team in the back like Manor, you never ever want to let both of your drivers go.

          For example: we all know Merc is unbeatable at the moment, for 3 years straight. If next year with Ham and Bot they start to lose races on pure performance, they know it’s not because Nico left, because they have Ham as control. He will push as hard as this year, if not harder, and we all know what he’s capable of. But put Bottas and Wehrlein in the Merc and even if the exact same performance drop happens, the team will never know whether the drivers are worse (not only in performance, but feedback, technical knowledge, etc) or just the car.

          That’s the most important and actually very simple reason why you always want to retain at least one of your drivers.

          For Mercedes there’s another thing happening and that is they’ve got everything to lose, they cannot afford to lose a constructors championship because they started out with a rookie, even with Hamilton taking a lot of wins next year for instance. Like it or not, F1 is still a constructors sport first.

      2. Comment. Of the day.

    3. The problem at Williams is that 18 years old rich kid in the sister car. They need someone experienced to go along young Lance Stroll and they think knowing the car is a plus.

  2. 2 ‘warnings’ in a single year?! I really doubt Vettel will stay at Ferrari beyond 2017 now. The performance of next year’s car and Vettel’s attitude will determine everything.

    1. VET – HAM swap incoming!

      1. I was thinking the same but Hamilton leaving Mercedes would be less likely than Mercedes not renewing his contract on the grounds of his “team attitude.” That said, I expect his attitude will be better next year given that he’ll be the senior driver at the team and the new guy will give him less pressure than Nico did (at least until the new guy gets settled in with the team and the car.)

        1. What “attitude” are you on about?

          1. exactly !

    2. Yes, I find Vettel’s situation at Ferrari getting uncomfortable for all parties. It is rather telling that Marchionne also said that both drivers remain under scrutiny with their future in the team unconfirmed, saying that the driver market in 2017 [I read this part as, will Hamilton be leaving Mercedes?] will help determine what the team does in terms of who stays and who goes. Among the two drivers, he says he is “happy” with Kimi’s 2016 performance.

      But I think that all the top drivers – Ham, Vet, Alo, Kimi, frankly are in this sort of uncomfortable marriage with their various teams. Alonso in my opinion is only at Mclaren due to contractual ties while Hamilton’s Mercedes sojourn took a drastic turn in 2016. Kimi would like to continue racing at Ferrari for some reasons but will the team be willing to take him in 2018?
      So 2017 will be an interesting year in the driver market with contracts of a lot of drivers coming to an end and spaces opening up in different teams. What would make the whole process even more interesting is the already known performance then of the teams under new regulations.

  3. Since 2009
    Vettel has overachieved
    Ferrari has underachieved
    Their energies have produced an infertile ‘hybrid’.

    I don’t think Ferrari needs to publicly reprimand Vettel, it’s just extra pressure for no reason. Just use the extra funding you get to make a decent car

    1. I agree. On the Vettel tabloid stuff, it’s just that, British press can be bias, but above all in this case most, is lost in translation.

    2. Just use the extra funding you get to make a decent car

      That’s a good point: How would Ferrari have faired if they didn’t have that extra funding? The corollary is how would the other teams have faired with an increase in revenue?

  4. Not seeing a happy ending to the Vettel and Ferrari marriage. He must already be close to the Alonso Point*, another mediocre car in 2017 should just about tip him over the edge.

    * – the point at which a racing driver’s lack of faith in a team acts as a sufficiently strong repulsive force that he finds himself uncontrollably attracted to an even worse team.

    1. haha, the Alonso Point – I like it. New Wikipedia page?

    2. Gerulf Dösinger (@)
      21st December 2016, 8:57

      @neilosjames From this very moment in time on the “Alonso-Point” shall be used universally to describe this situation – in and outside the racing world.

      “Why are you so sad lately?” – “I think my relationship is fast approaching the Alonso-Point.”

    3. @neilosjames – loving the term Alonso Point!

    4. Alonso-Point.

      Forever let it be written in history.

      1. Fudge Kobayashi (@)
        21st December 2016, 10:46

        I reached the Alonso-Point with my ex after a few months too. COTD!

        1. You aware that this means your new/future GF MUST be worse than your Ex in order to be a valid Alonso-Point?

          1. I don’t see why not. Ditching a sexy unfaithful GF to a new more down to earth one is common practices.

          2. lol.. good one!

    5. nice one :)

  5. OmarRoncal - Go Seb!!! (@)
    21st December 2016, 0:43

    Di Grassi spot on!!! And what a way to deride Williams as a small team.

    1. @omarr-pepper Yep, it’s a shame really, true.

      Williams can´t help it though. Their seat is coveted, they need an experienced driver with good visibility. Even if Williams were to give their seat to somebody they really wanted to drive for them, as f1 is, the team is very unlikely to challenge for anything as it isn’t a works team.

    2. No disrespect to Lucas, but I don’t think he was ever on Williams’ radar.

      1. @geemac, the other aspect is that, as things stand, he isn’t going to be fighting for a championship in the WEC either – when Porsche moved to pick up some of Audi’s ex-drivers, di Grassi wasn’t on their list. In fact, it does seem to be the case that di Grassi has kind of been shunted off into Formula E – most of Audi’s drivers have either been picked up by other teams in the WEC or have been diverted into Audi’s works DTM team.

  6. If Vettel ends up exiting Ferrari without a championship I do wonder if that will be the wake-up call they need.

    His dream is to win at Ferrari, and he got 3 of them last year. Sure a championship would be his ultimate goal, but he’s a smart guy. If next year becomes yet another year of ‘next year we will be better’ I doubt he will have any inclination to stick around. And with 2 of the best current F1 drivers walking away from them, will any other top driver really want to take their place?

    Ferrari will lose it’s appeal to talent if they don’t get next year right. They’ve been in a holding pattern for too long now.

    1. Substitute Vettel for Alonso in your first sentence. The latter’s departure didn’t exactly transform Ferrari, but nevertheless, genuine championship challenger or no, the Prancing Horse will always hold sway.

    2. Maybe Hamilton will join the team instead of Vettel, to redeem himself after getting beaten by Bottas next year :-)

      Not quite serious, but it might happen.

      1. The Bottas of 2016 was not good enough, before that Bottas was impressive. Let’s hope he gets his mojo back because Lewis is hungry.

        1. @jcost I think you mean he’s #blessed

    3. There are as many top notch drivers as there are potential championship winning teams. There are 5 standout talents in F1 right now – Verstappen, Ricciardo, Hamilton, Alonso and Vettel. There are 3 potential WDC winning teams – Merc, Red Bull and Ferrari. There will always be a top talent that Ferrari can poach.

      Regarding Vettel…..It’s more likely Ferrari will fire Vettel before he decides to exit. Ferrari are not a championship winning team anymore and they need a driver to play the patient game up until they do have a championship winning car. Vettel really doesn’t seem to have that kind of temperament, and in fact his performances this year were not even worthy of a Ferrari #1 driver.

      If Ferrari could fire Alonso and James Allison they wouldn’t even bat an eye lid to get rid of Vettel.

      1. @todfod True! In all fairness though I’ve read that Mattiacci offered a 3 year contract renewal to Alonso but he refused.

      2. OmarRoncal - Go Seb!!! (@)
        21st December 2016, 12:09

        @todfod your comment dismisses any Vettel talent… Oh but it’s you.
        Australia and Canada are two clear examples this year that Vettel would have won races again this year (or at least have a high chance) if Ferrari hadn’t ruined the strategy and if the car had been a better package.

        1. @omarr-pepper

          I think it’s cute how people mention those 2 races as a display of Vettels talent, but completely ignore the fact that he was out qualified and very often matched on raceday by Kimi.
          The same Kimi who was beaten so badly at the hands of Alonso that people were hoping he retires.

          I’m not completely dismissing Vettels talent. If you read my post, I do mention him as the top 5 talents in the sport. I just don’t think he’s special enough to retain if he performs in 2017 the way he did in 2016.

          1. OmarRoncal - Go Seb!!! (@)
            21st December 2016, 14:11

            @todfod well, thanks for saying I’m cute.
            Maybe you can also say the same to @keithcollantine as he mentions the same 2 highlights as “could have been”s.

            Don’t forget Barhain engine blow before Seb could even try something, and Kvyat hitting him twice.
            Well, I have to concede on your grid position fact, as it’s a fact and undeniable.

          2. @omarr-pepper

            Well.. Since we’re going on Keith’s analysis, it’s good to mention that he ranked Vettel at #7 in this year’s driver rankings.

            How badly do you think Ferrari want a #7 driver?

          3. (@omarr-pepper)
            It’s time to start accepting reality Omarr, Vettel’s mediocrity has been exposed.

            2010 – Webber was beating him until his shoulder injury. Newey himself has also said the RB6 was the fastest car he ever made.
            2011-2013 – Newey rocketships, and a teammate who couldn’t adapt to the new tyres and subsequently became rubbish.
            2014 – His first properly competitive teammate, Vettel wrekt.
            2015-2016 – Kimi is old and past his prime, and still having to be given inferior strategies to keep him behind.

            Vettel is an average and very, very lucky driver. I can see why his impressive sounding statistics can be confusing, but the writing is on the wall for his reputation and many people are now leaving him out of their ‘top drivers on the grid’ lists. To be honest I often get the impression that some in the paddock like Eddie Irvine and Ted Kravitz already knew it.

  7. Who exactly is pulling these “masterstrokes” at McLaren? Dennis is ousted by some faceless “board members”, and now after Capito (who’s CV speaks for itself), Sami is being shuffled down, if not out as well.
    And then they hire a lawyer… I can’t imagine his contribution to the performance of the team.

    1. It’s like when Merc hired, Paddy or Ferrari ousted Allison. The teams were actually looking promising but it’s also the opportunity for somebody to not only snatch a top job but also the recognition. Allison’s case is different I know, and we’ve seen what happened to Ferrari from the start of the season when they were almost there to being considerably slower.

    2. Biggsy, possibly Mansour Ojjeh, a man who had been one of Dennis’s longest partners in McLaren (through TAG Group) until they seem to have fallen out a few years ago.

      The claim is that Ojjeh voted against Dennis in a particular board meeting over the Bahrain GP in 2012 – Ojjeh chose to vote for what he personally believed instead of what Dennis believed – which broke with their agreement to always vote together. Dennis, feeling betrayed, then seems to have used Ojjeh’s ill health in 2012 and 2013 as an excuse to try and force him out of the team, causing the infighting that has plagued the team since then.

      On another note, there is a suggestion that Ekrem Sami might have chosen to step down from his position on the board of the McLaren Technology Group due to the death of Peter Stayner, whom he had been very close friends with until he passed away earlier this year due to illness.

  8. Just the other day mr.Marchionnie said they are missing many things yet come up and say we dont need paddy lowe.
    and ofcourse criticize sebastian for being aggressive. Did you ever thought that his outbursts was more down to your pathetic strategy team calls and ever consistent mess ups on race days where he began to question the calls every now and then.

    1. Also its more like Ferrari trying to put pressure on Vettel to sign rather than other way around.

      1. Vettel is a smart men, waiting for the 2017 car before putting his name under a new 3 year contract.

        1. True , may be thats why Marchionnie felt he need to pressure him to get the deal done , considering how their strategy and technical team was he has to look for option if they delivered to their style of 2009-current year.

  9. Ferrari will not have a WDC-winning car in 2017. That, to me, points to a likely complete breakdown in relations between Vettel and the team over the season.
    Lewis Hamilton’s most recent comments will not have endeared him to the Mercedes management, and his demand that Toto doesn’t touch his garage team will almost certainly have resulted in some interesting exchanges behind the scenes at Mercedes.
    Lewis’ contract is up to end of 2018, while Vettel’s contract is up to end of 2017. And Lewis has always wanted to drive for Ferrari, while in Vettel Mercedes would have a German driver again – 2017 will be the first season they haven’t had a German driver since they rejoined F1.
    ERGO: Ferrari to let Vettel join Mercedes end of 2017, in return for Lewis moving in the other direction.

  10. Who is behind the Team Mates cartoon? It’s a brand new website, with no followers on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram to speak of, so how did it end up in the roundup?

    1. Probably the reason being F1F found it funny and wanted to share it.
      Does a site have to followers, be old and established to merit a show in the roundup, I would not think so and I hope not.
      I would certainly hope that not everything about followers and hits, that is can be just about the content.

      1. That wasn’t my point at all. It just seems odd for it to appear out of nowhere. Perhaps Keith is behind it himself or perhaps it’s a personal friend. Either way would be totally fine, of course, I’m just curious.

  11. So for argument’s sake, what would happen if Valteri beats Lewis next year?

    …you’d all lose your minds! And the conspiracy theories would be very interesting too…

    I got a strange feeling that Valteri will surprise a few people by regularly matching Lewis.

    1. Very much agree, especially in qualifying. Think his lack of headlines this past year has made some people forget what he can do when he has something worthwhile to aim for.

      1. Yeah I think we have to be very mindful that a driver is coloured by his car. VB (presumably) is about to be in the best car he has ever had to compete in. I predict we will see a new man next year, because for the most part you need the equipment first and foremost to show your stuff. Let’s also be mindful they have little data on him and LH is ingrained, so VB will be immediately starting off on his hind foot vs LH, but that’s natural and unavoidable. This is a brand new chapter for VB and a huge step up for him, so I’d be throwing out much of what he has done in he past, and let’s just see. He must be ultra stoked.

    2. Roth Man (@rdotquestionmark)
      21st December 2016, 8:50

      I personally think Valteri will be another Heikki…….. but we shall see.

      1. Fudge Kobayashi (@)
        21st December 2016, 11:00

        Completely agree with Roth Man. A Grosjean or Sainz would have been able to pull off a few upsets next year but Bottas’s performances in 2014 were only of note in contrast to Massa. Also he looks rather podgy and isnt driver weight back on the list of priorities next year as the cars are getting heavier? I may be mistaken on the weight thing though.

        1. According to Google, Bottas is 2 kg heavier than Hamilton. It’s unlikely to be a factor, since I doubt Mercedes will have a hard time reaching the minimum weight.

  12. ‘Just a matter of time’… Reminds me of the ‘Schrödinger’s Cat’ paradox… It is ‘true’ until you won the championship…

    1. Ferrari chief technical officer Mattia Binotto believes it is “just a matter of time” until the team builds a car capable of winning championships again.

      Whichever way you look at it, it’s an extraordinary statement to make. A sort of “This year, next year, sometime, never” kind of assertion.
      If that was your boss, how would it make you feel about the year ahead?

    2. Roth Man (@rdotquestionmark)
      21st December 2016, 8:52

      Haha yeah. By the law of averages and shuffling our team around all the time, we must stumble across a fast car at some point.

  13. Of course Ferrari don’t need Lowe. Why on earth would they risk turning into a competitive team? They’ve got standards to maintain!

    1. Question is if Lowe would even consider going to Ferrari to ruin his career.

      1. There is some lost in translation here. If you read the original statement in Italian Marchionne said that Lowe offered himself to Ferrari, they declined and so he turned his attention to Williams.

  14. Ferrari’s problem is the Italians. They can only win if they shed some of those emotional hot heads.

    1. @tychop, so, let me get this straight – much of the aerodynamic development is carried out by German and Swiss wind tunnel workers in Cologne (at the Toyota Motorsport Group facilities – which most of the teams in F1 use these days) and at Sauber’s facilities, whilst there are Austrian engineers from AVL working in Ferrari’s engine division and a large chunk of their senior management staff are English – and it is solely the Italians in the team who must be to blame?

      1. Windtunnel Ferrari:

  15. A lot of “hate” in Massa’s possible return.I wonder if JB was the one returning,would the media react like that???

    1. Roth Man (@rdotquestionmark)
      21st December 2016, 8:53

      I personally would be happy because I like and rate JB. But like Massa his time has been and gone. Time to retire with grace…….

      1. I believe that both could have raced in 2017,without getting in the way of talented drivers.We have,unfortunately,many pay drivers in the grid.

        1. Roth Man (@rdotquestionmark)
          21st December 2016, 11:32

          Yep, it’s very sad but the private teams have to prioritise money over talent. I’d love this budget cap to come in but it won’t be feasible as others have mentioned.

    2. Massa should have retired years ago. Besides, he never was that good really. Button still has plenty left in him and he’s actually a nice guy. So yeah people would respond differently and rightly so.

      1. So,Massa is not a nice guy???And Button has more to give,really?He was awful most season,especially in the last races,when he was in “retirement mode”.If JB was to race in 2017,all those comments about “preventing young drivers race” would never exist.The media(as usual) just treat differently British drivers to non british drivers.

  16. Thanks for the birthday wishes @keithcollantine !

    As a birthday present I hope Bottas will replace Nico and that Kimi will win many many races next year…

  17. Wow!
    Well, it’s just a rumour for now, but it is said that Ron Dennis is setting up a bid to buy Manor. The investors that wanted to takeover McLaren are with him in the manoeuvre. They include an Indonesian businessman who would put Haryanto in one of the cars.

    1. If that’s true, Ricardo Gelael will put his son on that seat not the better driver (Haryanto).

      1. Yay, even better!

    2. If Ron still owns the rights to the Project 4 name, we could see the MP4 designation on two cars!

  18. Since Bottas to Mercedes are accepted as done deal. I really want to know what F1 fans think about Bottas. Will Bottas give more pressure to Lewis than Nico?

    Can you please make a poll @keithcollantine ?

  19. To tell your driver, who, if I’m not mistaken, has won 4 more world championships since 2010 than anyone else on the team, to calm down…PUBLICLY. Haha, yeah ok. Maybe when they drive off Vettel they will pick up Verstappen and tell him not to be so reckless preventing passes.

    Vettel made a few mistakes this year. So did Hamilton and Rossberg on the unusual occasion when they were not at the front of the pack. The solution isn’t to neuter your racehorse, it’s to build a faster car so your aggressive driver is where he can excel.

    IMO Ferrari is in the wrong here, and honestly I think the problem is at the very top of the corporation. Obviously Marchionne has bigger fish to fry that F1 or even Ferrari. It shows.

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