2017 Chinese Grand Prix team radio transcript

2017 Chinese Grand Prix

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Max Verstappen was distinctly unhappy with the lack of help he was getting from blue flags as he tried to lap Romain Grosjean at the end of the Chinese Grand Prix.

2017 Chinese Grand Prix in pictures
With team mate Daniel Ricciardo hunting him down in their battle for third position, Verstappen grew ever more insistent that his team urge race director Charlie Whiting to have blue flags shown for the Haas. The problem for Verstappen, as his engineer pointed out, was that he couldn’t get close enough to trigger the flags which would have told Grosjean to move aside.

The pre-race event notes state the drivers who are about to be lapped will receive “a pre-warning when the faster car is within 3.0s of the car about to be lapped”. Then “when the faster car is within one second of the car about to be lapped blue flags will be shown to the slower car (in addition to blue light panels, blue cockpit lights and a message on the timing monitors) and the driver must allow the following driver to overtake at the first available opportunity.”

Verstappen’s inability to get this close to a car which he was a lap ahead of could be a sign of how difficult cars can find it to overtake in some situations. However that hadn’t stopped Verstappen from passing other cars earlier in the race.

Another driver who was clearly unhappy with his race was Kimi Raikkonen, who repeatedly complained about Ferrari’s decision to postpone his second pit stop. The team believed that leaving him out on the track was his only chance of finishing on the podium ahead of the Red Bull drivers.

Given the time they later lost stuck behind Grosjean, it’s a shame this scenario didn’t get a chance to play out. However Raikkonen was vociferous in demanding the team bring him in for fresh tyres.

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2017 Chinese Grand Prix team radio transcript

Lap* From To Message
PR Max Verstappen I got an error next to my gear. I don’t know what it means.
PR Max Verstappen OK we’ll take a look, Max.
PR Daniel Riccairdo Daniel we will wait for feedback until you are on the grid. Give me fedback when we are on the grid.
PR Sergio Perez I think the track is very close for slicks tyres.
PR Sergio Perez Understood.
PR Sergio Perez I would like to try slicks.
PR Sergio Perez Checo you’ve got to be sure because it gives other people information. Are you sure?
PR Fernando Alonso Fernando be careful in turn 11 some are reporting there might be oil there from their laps to the grid. So correction Fernandio it’s grid position 11 that has oil.
PR Fernando Alonso The car reset itself. It’s on again but it switched on and off by itself.
PR Fernando Alonso Understood.
PR Fernando Alonso Everyone on inters except for Sainz. He is on a new option [super-soft].
FL Lewis Hamilton The important thing that we get through to that transition point, the inter-to-dry-point. We suspect that will be lap six. It will go because lifting a lot of water.
FL Marcus Ericsson So the latest weather forecast is no rain expected. A few drops might be possibe but no rain expected.
FL Sebastian Vettel It has dried up quite a bit compared to previous.
FL Fernando Alonso It is more dry than the laps to the grid so get ready quite soon.
FL Jolyon Palmer I’m going to stay out.
FL Jolyon Palmer If you want to come in, come in.
FL Jolyon Palmer OK, box, box.
FL Jolyon Palmer Box, box
2 Sergio Perez Potential front-right puncture, caution front-right.
2 Max Verstappen Great first lap Max. Stunning first lap mate.
2 Max Verstappen It’s still too early for slicks but keep me updated the guys on slicks.
2 Max Verstappen Will do.
3 Fernando Alonso Yeah I think we come in mate.
3 Fernando Alonso Confirm that. Box this lap.
3 Lance Stroll [Censored by FOM] I got hit. Out of the race.
3 Nico Hulkenberg Are you in the pit lane Nico?
3 Nico Hulkenberg No, but I spun. Not in the pit lane. I’m losing all the temperature now on these. Going so slow. Like ice.
3 Nico Hulkenberg OK, Nico, understood.
5 Fernando Alonso And drinks.
5 Fernando Alonso I don’t need [censored by FOM] drinks! There is just enough concentration to keep the car on the track, you know? Forget all the [censored by FOM] drinks.
5 Max Verstappen That was a Sauber that’s crashed on the start/finish line mate.
5 Max Verstappen Slick tyres?
5 Max Verstappen Giovinazzi, slick tyres, soft compound. What is it Max, we’re thinking of coming in?
5 Max Verstappen Where will I drop back?
5 Max Verstappen It could be a long Safety Car.
5 Felipe Massa Tyres is really tricky now.
7 Lewis Hamilton It’s very hard to keep these temperatures up. The Safety Car has to pick up the pace.
7 Stoffel Vandoorne Stoffel we’ve not seen any damage with the chassis. The rims were damaged on that set but the chassis looks OK.
7 Stoffel Vandoorne Yeah it’s the tyres thaty are worrying me. But it looks like everyone is struggling.
7 Kimi Raikkonen Is it very wet on the main straight?
8 Stoffel Vandoorne OK Stoff some cars are clearly struggling with tyre temperatures. This should get interesting at the restart.
8 Kimi Raikkonen I don’t know what happened with my engine. I have zero torque.
9 Valtteri Bottas OK so we’re going to fight back through this field. Let’s just get our head down.
9 Lewis Hamilton Ricciardo on super-soft, 48 laps remaining, he won’t get to the end on that tyre.
11 Felipe Massa Grip level very low.
11 Max Verstappen OK nice job Max. Push up to Lewis.
12 Fernando Alonso Fernando for reference Sainz is quickest on track.
12 Fernando Alonso I’m quickest on track on the corners.
12 Fernando Alonso And we are P7. Perez behind +4.5.
12 Fernando Alonso Yeah we need more rain now.
13 Lewis Hamilton So Vergne now the car behind. Correction, that’s Verstappen behind!
13 Sergio Perez Last lap you were nine-tenths quicker than Alonso ahead on softs.
14 Esteban Ocon Kvyat is holding me up at the moment.
14 Esteban Ocon Copy that. We’re going to need to pass him, then.
15 Daniel Ricciardo Struggling with understeer for now.
15 Nico Hulkenberg Quite a bit of understeer in the car now, right-handers.
17 Kimi Raikkonen What the hell is happening on exit of 12? I have no power if I don’t push the K1.
17 Kimi Raikkonen Understood, I’ll check.
17 Marcus Ericsson OK Marcus for info Hulkenberg got a ten-second penalty for overtaking you under Safety Car.
18 Stoffel Vandoorne I think we need to do the power cycle again.
18 Stoffel Vandoorne OK Stoffel we have a fuel problem, back off, we’ll box this lap.
19 Max Verstappen Alright Max we’re losing around three tenths in sector two at the moment. Just give up turn seven a little bit for a faster eight-nine-ten combo.
20 Marcus Ericsson OK undestood. Keep pushing at the moment your lap time is good. With the info we have we think we can make it to the end. We’ll keep you up to date.
21 Lewis Hamilton We’re going to go to the end on this tyre, right? It’s quite harsh on this front-left tyre.
21 Lewis Hamilton Copy, we’re flexible.
21 Lewis Hamilton 37 laps remaining. What do you think about going to the end?
21 Lewis Hamilton Currently I think I can do it.
23 Sebastian Vettel Good move. And push now.
23 Romain Grosjean Half a percent rearward on brake balance is our only tool right now.
23 Romain Grosjean They’re really going to box or not? If not we have to do something. My tyres are just going away.
23 Daniil Kvyat Failure, what should I do?
23 Daniil Kvyat OK keep going, we are looking.
23 Daniil Kvyat OK
23 Daniil Kvyat And no upshift.
23 Daniil Kvyat OK. Stop in a safe place. We need to stop the car in a safe place. Hydraulic failure Danny, sorry for that.
25 Kimi Raikkonen Do we really think that the tyres will last to the end of the race? Because it doesn’t feel like it. Like I’m sliding because I’m close to the car. If we have to stop we probably should stop soon.
26 Max Verstappen OK so Sebastian last lap 37.5. It was a struggle for them to pass Daniel. Took them a fairly long time. You are 4kph faster in a straight line as well. So you’re more difficult for them.
26 Fernando Alonso Has Bottas some car damage? Or he’s running his normal pace?
26 Fernando Alonso No damage that we’re aware of. Our pace is a little bit better than we expected.
26 Fernando Alonso How he can be behind us? Unbelievable.
28 Jolyon Palmer Surprised we’re not boxing. I’ve really got a problem in the left-front.
28 Jolyon Palmer Understood Jolyon. Think staying out’s the best bet at the moment. Keep managing that left-front.
28 Lewis Hamilton These tyres are starting to slide around a lot more.
29 Max Verstappen Max do you need to box?
29 Max Verstappen No I can continue but the left-front is not good.
30 Fernando Alonso The people behind us they have softer tyres than we have so we pit when they pit. Don’t hurry too much.
30 Daniel Ricciardo If Max has problems with his tyres just don’t let me fall into Kimi.
30 Daniel Ricciardo Understood.
32 Lewis Hamilton Pace has gone down. Tyres don’t feel great.
33 Romain Grosjean 0.7 quicker than Hulkenberg that lap, good job.
33 Kimi Raikkonen Again the front is [censored by FOM] suffering quite a bit. The left-front is getting very cold and shuddering.
34 Valtteri Bottas Yeah it’s just consistent deg all through the race. Front-left is limited.
34 Valtteri Bottas Copy that.
35 Max Verstappen Nice job. Tyre wear was not the limitation last stint, it was cold front tyres.
35 Fernando Alonso Sorry guys. I lost a bit of time. On braking I didn’t know where to go.
35 Fernando Alonso Yep no problem.
35 Fernando Alonso Driveshaft problem.
35 Fernando Alonso OK Fernando stop the car and switch off completely, please.
36 Lewis Hamilton We should probably pit. Don’t know how far these tyres are willing to go. Can probably make it, maybe not.
36 Lewis Hamilton Copy that. Stand by.
36 Lewis Hamilton OK it’ll be a maximum of two laps. Just want ot get Kimi well and truly out of our window, make sure we don’t have any fuss at the stop. OK box, box, pit window is clear.
38 Daniel Ricciardo OK Daniel so update. Hamilton has now stopped as well. That leaves Raikkonen as the only one-stopper. He will lose a few positions if he stops, so he’s likely going to go to the end. You probably will catch him in about ten laps.
38 Valtteri Bottas Fastest lap of the race, good job.
39 Kimi Raikkonen Why didn’t you stop when I asked you? Then if we know that we’re going to stop two times probably everybody else apart from me.
39 Kimi Raikkonen We think this is the best chance is to go to the end. Copy on your message though.
39 Kimi Raikkonen I have so poor front end [censored by FOM] they’re just going to catch me so easy. I cannot push in the front. So where are we going to finish? I have no front end and it’s 20 laps to go. So…
39 Kimi Raikkonen Understood, Kimi. Our current prediction is P3 if we don’t stop. We think Seb’s going to come through but the others will be behind.
40 Kimi Raikkonen How much faster the guys are behind?
40 Kimi Raikkonen So Vettel did 36.9.
40 Kimi Raikkonen We’re almost three seconds slower and you still think it’s good to stay out? It’s only going to get more worse.
40 Kimi Raikkonen Understood. Verstappen 37.6 and Ricciardo 37.6.
40 Kimi Raikkonen It’s still 18 laps to go and the front is already really bad. Really bad on the left front.
40 Kimi Raikkonen Understood Kimi, understood.
40 Kimi Raikkonen Because somebody else behind even the Red Bulls will pass us if we don’t stop. Come on.
40 Kimi Raikkonen Box this lap, Kimi, box this lap.
41 Lewis Hamilton Vettel picking up the pace now.
42 Lewis Hamilton How’s the gap come down from 12 to 8?
42 Lewis Hamilton There’s two laps of undercut, we were just waiting for Kimi to get out of our window. It’s all good now. Vettel is pushing but you’re doing good lap times.
43 Kevin Magnussen Very, very well done. Come on, you have another job to do.
43 Sebastian Vettel Very good lap, Sebastian, keep your head down.
43 Sebastian Vettel I think he can react.
43 Sebastian Vettel Let’s keep it there.
43 Sebastian Vettel What do we need to average to catch him five laps to go?
43 Sebastian Vettel 0.7 per lap. Let’s keep it there.
46 Max Verstappen They just don’t move out of the way.
46 Max Verstappen Copy Max. You’re going to have to put some energy into the front tyres, try and help keep them alive.
47 Valtteri Bottas So we still have potential for P4 here, Nico, er, Valtteri, so just keep pushing.
47 Felipe Massa Corner two, it’s just terrible.
48 Max Verstappen Update on the blue flags in front of me. Because at the moment it’s ridiculous.
48 Kimi Raikkonen So Red Bulls are coming across blue flags in front. They are suffering with their fronts.
49 Nico Hulkenberg Massa in big trouble, 40.3 last lap in clear air.
49 Max Verstappen Come on, move out of the way.
50 Carlos Sainz Jnr This is good, Carlos, this is good. Oil transfer, please.
50 Kevin Magnussen Perez tyres are dying so he shouldn’t be a threat.
50 Sergio Perez Box this lap, pit confirm. Use everything from the tyre. Our pit window is clear.
51 Max Verstappen Tell Grosjean to move out of the way, please, he just stays in front.
51 Max Verstappen Copy Max we’ll get on it. Six laps to go.
52 Felipe Massa Check if everything is right on the rear-left. The car is completely oversteer to the right-hand-side corners. So just check if everything is OK. The car is pulling to the left, also.
52 Max Verstappen I’m getting understeer because of it.
52 Max Verstappen Yeah I know mate. I think we keep getting told we need to be within a second. It’s basically what’s been agreed. I’ll do my best.
53 Daniel Ricciardo OK Daniel so five laps to go. If you didn’t know already Max is P3 and we are P4.
53 Max Verstappen It’s ridiculous, mate, I’m losing grip.
53 Max Verstappen We’ve done everything we can this end, Max.
54 Max Verstappen Can you please keep telling Charlie this is really ridiculous.
54 Max Verstappen Understood.
56 Felipe Massa I don’t understand why I have blue flags.
56 Felipe Massa You just unlapped yourself from Sainz.
56 Felipe Massa What’s the problem?
56 Felipe Massa No problem, it’s fine.
56 Max Verstappen OK Max. As you’re aware I’m just you are racing. Just keep it clean. Just use your overtake…
56 Max Verstappen Yeah, yeah, don’t talk, please.
VL Lewis Hamilton Get in there, Lewis. That’s a great race mate. Absolute masterclass. Really well managed mate. really good job..
VL Lewis Hamilton Well managed from you too man. Thank you so much for all your efforts, guys. Everyone has really worked hard for this. Got to keep pushing.
VL Sebastian Vettel P2 Sebastian. Well done, solid race. Nice moves out there.
VL Sebastian Vettel Yeah I enjoyed that one. Grazie a tutti. Grande lavoro. That was a bit unlucky. I think we did the right thing but obviously there was the Safety Car straight away. But I think in the mixed conditions it felt like we were the quicker. We were the quicker, man, we were the quicker! But we couldn’t prove that one. Next time we will. Grazie.
VL Sebastian Vettel Bravo Sebastian, bravo bravo bravo
VL Max Verstappen Well done mate, good job.
VL Max Verstappen Thank you very much! Not a bad race, not a bad race.
VL Max Verstappen Nice job, podium at the end mate. Think you did pretty well. Not a lot of front tyre temp at all.
VL Max Verstappen Yeah we missed qualifying so I didn’t really know what to expect from the car. It was a bit difficult. Still quite a good result from 16th.
VL Max Verstappen Yeah it was a cracking first lap, nice job.
VL Max Verstappen Well done Max. Where you came from on the grid, your first stint on the inters was blistering.
VL Valtteri Bottas Good try there, Valtteri, good effort.
VL Valtteri Bottas Really disappointing. I’m so sorry guys for the amateur mistake. I know it doesn’t help but I will make it up in the next races.
VL Valtteri Bottas Copy that, Valtteri.
VL Romain Grosjean Good drive, man. It’s our old friend 11th.
VL Romain Grosjean I’m thinking ‘how much damage have we got?’ and on top of just got [unclear] everywhere. Impossible to overtake Palmer. Lost so much time there. One-and-a-half seconds a lap.
VL Romain Grosjean Yep you didn’t catch any luck but you did a good drive, good passes.
VL Nico Hulkenberg Pretty unlucky with the Virtual Safety Car on lap one. That really screwed us. Could have been a great move.
VL Nico Hulkenberg Yeah. There you go. It didn’t work. Anyway, try again next weekend.
VL Kevin Magnussen Very good job. Eighth position. This is just the beginning. Good job.
VL Kevin Magnussen Good job guys. Really good startegy. Good call to go onto super-soft. Just massive good job guys. Can’t wait until the next one.
VL Kevin Magnussen Yeah give us a bit of rest, eh?
VL Felipe Massa OK tough race mate, really tough.
VL Felipe Massa Yeah it was a terrible race, man. Everything happened so… Try the next one but quite disappointed.
VL Felipe Massa Yep I agree very tough. But we go to Bahrain next, should be OK.
VL Daniel Ricciardo Well done Daniel you drove a great reace there, gave it everything, well done.
VL Daniel Ricciardo Thanks guys.
VL Daniel Ricciardo Don’t worry, stronger weekends to come. A very good race, particularly the second half, very strong.
VL Daniel Ricciardo Yeah. Once I got close it became tricky.
VL Carlos Sainz Jnr Well done mate. We have taken six points in the bag. Not much more we could have done. Fantastic. Well done, mate.
VL Carlos Sainz Jnr Yes. Wow. Great race, guys. Sdometimes it’s worth taking a risk, eh? Haha.
VL Carlos Sainz Jnr Yeah super big-ball call, matre. Well doen moonshine.
VL Carlos Sainz Jnr Incredible also to fight with the Ferraris and the Red Bull at the beginning.

Lap: Refers to lap message was broadcast on. There may be a delay between messages being said and being broadcast. PR = pre-race; FL = formation lap; VL = victory lap.
Message: Repetitive or irrelevant messages omitted. Notes in italics. Highlights in bold. Only messages which were broadcast during the coverage of the race are included.

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Chinese Grand Prix data

    Author information

    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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    17 comments on “2017 Chinese Grand Prix team radio transcript”

    1. Let’s hope VER stops “vetteling”. Maybe the first part he had a point but defending to RIC he lost his pace and the gap with the Haas increased. Moaning will not win cups..

      1. Ben Rowe (@thegianthogweed)
        14th April 2017, 11:10

        I thought there was nothing wrong at all with what Grosjean was doing towards the end of the race. He will have had to cost himself a huge amount of time if he was to slow right down to allow Verstappen through. I’m pleased that a lot of the time, Grosjean didn’t get blue flagged. I sometimes hate those rules. I don’t get why lapped drivers should have to cost themselves so much time as they are still in a race themselves. Verstappen moaned far too much towards the end of this race! As you say, it is like Vettel last year. Vettel seems to have got over it now though and passed it onto Verstappen :D

        1. @thegianthogweed, it also has to be said that, even in free air, the rate at which Verstappen was catching Grosjean was diminishing from lap 42 onwards – he was a fraction faster, but only by a few tenths of a second per lap. Even if Grosjean wasn’t there, I don’t think that Verstappen could have gone that much faster anyway.

      2. Maybe we should give drivers a slack in what they say in the heat of the moment. Same goes for Vettel, Raikkonen and Hamilton in the past. Emotions are high, adrenaline pumping. I may say some things I regret myself in a situation like that.

        1. Fully agree!

      3. What the hell means “vetteling” ?? Do you have more examples to prove it???

    2. Bottas has some damage to repair with his team. Alonso had a good view on it…

      26 Fernando Alonso Has Bottas some car damage? Or he’s running his normal pace?
      26 Fernando Alonso No damage that we’re aware of. Our pace is a little bit better than we expected.
      26 Fernando Alonso How he can be behind us? Unbelievable.

      And he knows it..

      L Valtteri Bottas Good try there, Valtteri, good effort.
      VL Valtteri Bottas Really disappointing. I’m so sorry guys for the amateur mistake. I know it doesn’t help but I will make it up in the next races.
      VL Valtteri Bottas Copy that, Valtteri.

    3. That Kimi’s and his Ferrari’s radio communication is really intereresting. What were the strategists thinking? Surely it wasn’t Kimi’s best performance by any means but that poor strategy didn’t help. Think they threw a podium away there.

      1. @huhhii If they threw it away, they did it by listening to Raikkonen. Their only chance of keeping him ahead of the Red Bulls was keeping him out. He wasn’t fast enough to do it by pitting again.

        1. @keithcollantine Kimi’s pace was going to slow even more if they would have stayed with that rubber until the end. Even Bottas would’ve easily passed him if they’d do one-stopper. With fresher rubber and earlier pit he could’ve beat Red Bulls.

      2. @huhhii Raikkonen was behind Verstappen and Ricciardo the whole race. He was in Ricciardo’s dirty air from lap 10 to 32, without being able to overtake. If Ferrari had copied Red Bull’s pitstop strategy, Kimi had to overtake Ricciardo AND Verstappen to finish on the podium. That’s not realistic.

    4. @keithcollantine Probably easy enough to judge whether the messages are ‘from’ or ‘to’, but the column headings seem to have gone a bit awry…

    5. Keith Crossley
      14th April 2017, 14:01

      Curious that both Verstappen and Vettel demonstrated it is possible to pass equally fast cars; and then Verstappen couldn’t catch to pass a slower Haas.

    6. WRT to VER complaining about Grojean, I like that even Brundle said “well, RIC isn’t having problems staying right behind Max.”

      It’s good Whiting didn’t have Grojean pull over, but I wouldn’t be too hard on Max (or VET or HAM who’ve I heard “whinge” about back markers). Often they are just venting frustration, but it doesn’t impact their driving.

      1. or more bluntly, how many of us have prattled on at any given time on the motorway when some bloke in front of us cuts us off or is going too slow in the passing lane and so on?

      2. digitalrurouni
        14th April 2017, 15:46

        Really? Doesn’t impact their driving? Did you miss that lockup under braking Verstappen did when ‘under pressure’?

    7. Pleased to see Vergne back. Well deserved.

    Comments are closed.