Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Red Bull Ring, 2017

F1 cars are “way too heavy” – Hamilton

F1 Fanatic Round-up

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In the round-up: Lewis Hamilton wants F1 to reverse the steady rise in car weight.

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Is Jolyon Palmer having a tough season because breakdowns are robbing him of valuable mileage? Jordi does the maths (also see this note from me on the final point):

Palmer has a total mileage of 5770.003km this year (without counting qualifying sessions). This is 1835.228km less than Hülkenberg, and the lowest besides Alonso (with 5098.878km).

If we use only FP sessions mileage, Palmer again has the lowest besides Alonso (2566.82km to 2392.418km). Everyone else is above 2995km (with Verstappen being the lowest at 2995.284km). It’s worth noting that FP sessions in Monaco should be worth at least 200km.

Using race mileage, things change a bit. Verstappen has the lowest mileage (surprise!) at 1652.183km. Alonso hits 1822.01km. Palmer is third with 1885.818km.

Fair enough, he’s had some bad luck. And considering his partners in misfortune are Alonso and Verstappen, it would perhaps be unfair to compare him to them. Still, he’s completely off-the-pace compared to Hülkenberg. To the best of my knowledge, there hasn’t been any official session this season where Palmer set a faster time than Hülkenberg (with the exception of mechanical issues, if there were any).
Jordi Casademunt (@Casjo)

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On this day in F1

  • Michael Schumacher won the first F1 race on the revised Hockenheimring today in 2002

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  • 60 comments on “F1 cars are “way too heavy” – Hamilton”

    1. Calum Menzies
      28th July 2017, 0:05

      That’s really sad Porsche are quitting WEC. Kills the 2018 WEC top tier championship does it Not?

      1. Hey, maybe Toyota will finally win Le Mans?

        1. @george No Jackie Chan (and Mr. Cheng) will! :p

      2. It wasn’t the real Porsche anyway. They are still fighting the emission gate, now it’s the Germans that are on their trail, Porsches and Audi’s are getting recalled, it’s the 3.0 litre Cayenne if you’re interested. Lots of money, 17.2B in lawsuits from the US alone, less than a tiny fraction in the UK and other national entities.

        1. It wasn’t the real Porsche anyway.

          What does that mean?

      3. Is WEC that series “everybody” was talking up 2 years ago when F1 was “about to end”? Man, things change quickly.

      4. It’s going to be the end of all combustion engine powered motorsport within 10 years. Can’t believe Liberty dared to invest so heavily into this. No engine manufacturer will make old fashion engines in such small numbers needed just for racing. The diesel is going first. And car manufacturers like Audi, Porsche and Mercedes wants to be in F1 or WEC only if it shows off their latest technology, they don’t want to look foolish by supporting old technology. It would hurt their commercial goals. A researcher has said that the world will switch to electric powered cars faster than anyone could imagine. perhaps within as little as 8 years. Things are happening very rapidly now and it will never be as in the old days again. In fact, electric motors are probably very unsuitable for motorsport as many of the sports attributes will disappear, like the sound levels that always have been associated with speed. It will look like Scalectrix and not many will watch.

        1. Of course, they could perhaps add artificial sound just for the show, but that would be just ridiculous.

    2. Wow, it’s devastating how fast the WEC has unraveled. It was only 2 or 3 years ago that we were in a golden age of endurance racing; in the space of a year LMP1 has collapsed.

      This is crisis time for the ACO. I’ve read the WEC may even lose its status as a world championship if it can’t attract another manufacturer to fill the void.

      Ultimately this is proof if it were needed that motorsport cannot rely on manufacturers.

      1. @jackysteeg

        Ultimately this is proof if it were needed that motorsport cannot rely on manufacturers.

        That may be true but I think the problem is that if it wasn’t for the manufacturer’s I don’t think WEC would have been as interesting, exciting or even as popular as it has been the past few years.

        It’s a delicate balancing act because you need the manufacturer’s to help create a buzz but if you build your top category around them as the ACO tend to do to help showcase Le Mans your in trouble when they leave.

      2. @jackysteeg

        Very true mate. WEC will lose its world championship status if Porsche pull out.

        As we know, manufacturers, including the current iteration of Ferrari, dont go racing out of passion, its all down to business. WEC is not seen as the right vehicle at this point in time. Everybody seems to be flocking to FE because its cheap, and it sorts of gels with the “green” message that the series purveys, basically, you get bang for your buck.

        When FE turns into a full blown arm-race, the manufacturers may think differently.

        Lets hope we’ll get Porsche back into F1. Would it be Red-Bull Porsche Racing or Mclaren-Porsche?

        1. @jaymenon10

          Would it be Red-Bull Porsche Racing or Mclaren-Porsche?

          The problem with McLaren is they now have a road car division which competes against the other sports/super/hypercar manufacturers. Having Porsche branding on your F1 car doesn’t make much sense if you want someone to buy a McLaren instead.

          1. So theoretically..Mclaren-Honda is the only way forward?

            Would Mclaren have the financial backing to develop their own PU come 2021 I wonder.

          2. @george Doesn’t the NSX compete with a McLaren though…IIRC?

            1. @davidnotcoulthard @george Yes the 540C is within £20k roughly of the NSX. But I think that because Porsche only sell luxury sports cars is more of an issue for them supplying another direct competitor that only sells luxury sports cars, vs Honda who make 99.9% of their money from everyday family cars.

            2. @tonyyeb I’m may be clutching at straws here but….Cayenne and Macan? :p

              (though yeah Porsche are known for sports cars – Honda…..much less so)

              Anyone feeling McLaren-TAG coming, with a completely different engine to Red Bull-TAG Heuer? :)

            3. @davidnotcoulthard Yeah still think as Honda’s business isn’t dependant on the NSX it is a different business decision.

              As for McLaren TAG – Only if it is the original TAG (Techniques d’Avant Garde) and not the TAG Heuer watch company…

            4. @tonyyeb I did say I was clutching at straws :)

              That, and my comment was based on TAG-Heuer having already been spun off long ago.

            5. @davidnotcoulthard Ha, yeah you did :)

              Indeed, very true again. Still think/agree that McLaren’s best hope is a re-badged engine, although do most people know that Red Bull have a Renault in there?!

          3. Even Mercedes felt that McLaren was going too much on their turf directly competing with Mercedes sportscars and supercars.

        2. the future is in electric / battery powered cars.

          the manufacturers already in fe are learning and developing faster and more efficient cars which is the point of fe.

          if mercedes etc dont join in then risk being left behind when petrol cars are finally banned in 20 or so years.

      3. @jackysteeg

        Ultimately this is proof if it were needed that motorsport cannot rely on manufacturers.

        I’d rather say this is proof that organizers refuse to learn this. Time and again, ACO and FIA have thought that they could do anything and car manufacturers would stay. They were wrong in the 70s with WSC, they were wrong in the 80s with F1, in the 90s with WSC (although killing Group C was a somewhat coordinated move) and at the end of the 00s with F1 again.

        Ideally you get something going like WSC had in the late 80s and F1 had in the late 90s. Established racing outfits working as a works team for a car manufacturer. This allows the team to have an identity and longlivity, but also allows manufacturers to opt out when needed. Great examples would be Mercedes’ partnership with McLaren before 2010, or Tom Walkinshaw Racing running the Jaguar cars at Le Mans.

        You can’t legislate this I suppose, but organizers can stop bending the rules in favor of big manufacturers (Diesels for Audi at Le Mans, smaller hybrid engines to keep Renault and Mercedes in F1). Hopefully the FIA and ACO manage to bring that 90s kind of synchronicity back to their sports. There’s no reason some of the utterly qualified teams in LMP2 can’t run an LMP1 team, or why a team like Force India couldn’t be key to Aston Martin’s F1 adventure.

        1. @npf1 FYI, Joest ran all Audi LMP1 entries.

      4. Ultimately this is proof if it were needed that motorsport cannot rely on manufacturers./blockquote>

        *bar Ferrari.

        1. To be fair there was a time when Ferrari’s sports car programme was actually their main programme, above even F1.

      5. @jackysteeg To my knowledge as a sporting competition LeMans first ceased to exist when Ford first brought their Ford GT armada, from then on it’s eras after eras of manufacturers “buying” the event for promotional reasons, win and leave Le Mans for the racers who then get betrayed by the ACO, again and again and again.

        1. But manufacturers were the main winners of Le Mans long before Ford.

          1. I think the point is that they massively outspent their rivals to “buy” the championship.

            It’s been no different in F1 though. It started with Williams and their Saudi sponsorship in the eighties which started a huge budget war up to the ridiculous amounts which are spent today.

    3. I’ll say this on the Halo.

      Like most others I don’t like the way it looks, TBH I don’t like the way the various screen’s/canopy’s look either & would prefer F1 to remain totally open cockpit as it current is.

      However as Martin Brundle has said a few times over the past year or so the genie is out the bottle now & you can’t put it back in. We have seen it on all the cars now & it’s viable & ready. If they decide not to run it just because people think its ugly & something tragic happens next year which the Halo would have prevented. What do you tell the family of the driver involved, The media & anyone else that start’s asking why the thing that the sport knew worked that would have prevented that injury/death from happening wasn’t been used?
      Do you think saying it wasn’t been used because people felt it looked ugly is going to be seen as a good excuse? In that situation the FIA, F1 & all those against the halo are going to be ripped to shreds in the media & the FIA/FOM & maybe even the teams are likely going to face legal action for failing to do everything possible to prevent injury/death since they had something that they know works.

      End of the day for me as I say I don’t like the looks of any of these head protection solutions, But i’m not going to stop watching or enjoying F1 or any other category just because of it. And yes if it helps protect a driver from injury or death I will see it as a worthwhile thing to have on the cars despite the looks.

      1. +1 on that. there’s a feeling of inevitability about it. we’ll get used to it. F1 today is the alien cousin of F1 in the 1960s but we still consider it to be the same sport

      2. I agree. I don’t like the halo, I will have to get used to it. However folks, don’t let the halo distract you from the fact that F1 will be fully electric in 20 years…

        I was uneasy with the hybrid PUs but I ended up liking it but I’m afraid electric F1 cars will take me longer to get used to, but we can’t fight the future.

      3. @stefmeister what would I tell that family? That their child knew the risks involved with the sport and chose to get in the car regardless (the same thought/realization every person has whenever they choose to get involved in something inherently dangerous). Formula 1 isn’t necessary, no one forces anyone to get behind the wheel of a race car. No one forces anyone to enroll in the Isle of Man TT, yet thousands flock (and hundreds enter) to that tiny island every year for arguably THE most dangerous motorsport event of the year, knowing full well that it’s pretty much a guarantee one of them will not leave alive. They do it anyways and the families of said riders know full well what’s at stake.

        1. @darth-ecclestone Fair enough, However just because they know there is a risk & dangers when they step into the car isn’t an excuse to not do everything possible to make things as safe as possible.

          The argument that “They know & accept the risks” is the same argument that was used against just about every previous safety device that was brought in from the recent additions like the HANS device & high cockpit sides to older things like run-off & crash barriers & it’s no more a valid argument against the Halo as it was when it was used as a reason not to make tracks safer with proper barriers & run off in the early 70’s when Jackie Stewart was mocked by the media & track owners & regularly told to stop racing if he didn’t like the risk.

          It’s a stupid argument & reason to not do something today just like it was then.

          1. @stefmeister I understand the logic behind the thinking but the sport (as most other dangerous ones) has made leaps and bounds when it comes to safety. It is not the same argument as before because people were dying left and right up to the 70’s, with [serious] injuries being even more commonplace. That’s just not the case anymore. And I’m sorry but if safety is the utmost concern then the cars would be heaver,
            MUCH slower, fully enclosed (cockpit and wheel), and probably driven remotely with no fans in the stands (just on the off chance something flies in the stands) So to everyone touting it’s ‘stupid’ not to do something I turn that argument on it’s head; when will it be “safe enough” then? Because one can always point further down the safety road to something that can be improved upon or changed (as aforementioned). IMO, basically, if your argument is HALO will make the cars safer and safety is priority #1 then HALO is a half measure.

            1. That’s just not the case anymore

              @darth-ecclestone Neither was it in mid-April 1994

    4. Racerdude7730
      28th July 2017, 1:29

      Like I said in other posts I think the Halo is ugly but that’s not my main concern with it. I think in roll over and other types of accidents it will be a danger if a drive can’t remove from a flipped or badly damaged car. I know we don’t have fires anymore but was if you are upside down on fire? You can’t climb out like Alonso in his big crash. Also it scares me if it gets dented in it will be hard to get the driver out and remove. If say James hinchif had this on his Indycar he may have bleed to death before getting him out. He almost does as is. We also don’t have any race testing on it which is bad bc they say it don’t effect your vision but you don’t know that for sure till they race it. Guys say it’s almost impossible to see out your mirrors which isn’t good. I just think for the most part the negatives out weigh the positives. It would have only saved one person in 25 years. Justin Wilson most likely would still have been killed from the angle it came in at.
      They really should do better research bc the screen looks better and to me is way safer bc if stops the little stuff. There is no reason they can’t fix the distortion in the vision bc fighter jets have no issues. I just wish most thought went into it all

      1. Racerdude7730
        28th July 2017, 1:30

        What if*

      2. Racerdude7730
        28th July 2017, 1:33

        hinchcliffe* plz we need an edit!

        1. @racerdude7730 The information that has already been put out since the announcement that they will have halos starting next season, makes your comments outdated. You’re wrong on several counts.

          They’ll actually have more room to get out if the car is flipped. Visibility is not an issue, and remember that if there was a mirror issue that is because the thing was bolted on. Once the halo is integrated there will be no issue with mirrors. Most people disagree that Wilson would still have been killed. And they have done their research…screens stopping small stuff was never the concern and screens are too distorted and can’t be cleaned, as just a few of the negatives. And fighter jet cockpits are as wide as an F1 body is, so no it obviously is not just a matter of doing the fighter jet thing…or they would do it. Jets aren’t running behind dirty cars either so they don’t need to be concerned with debris dirtying them up nor rain, as their speeds negate that concern. They can also deal with condensation inside and air cooling if need be as opposed to the greenhouse effect that a driver would have to deal with inside an F1 car unless they added an air circulation system inside.

          Do you think the scientists working on this issue in F1 are high school kids working on a project?

      3. Did you not read all of the round up? It states it can withstand 15x the weight of an F1 car and actually provides more room to escape, so I would say it’s unlikely to dent or become an issue when the car is rolled over.

        1. How does it provide more room when the car is inverted?
          Or the driver is expected to take his helmet off and undress before slipping through the sides?

    5. Michael Brown (@)
      28th July 2017, 3:37

      Indeed. F1 is trying to outweigh LMP1-H cars… the few that are left.

    6. That ESPN video was the first time I ever read reports of another aeroscreen (assuming it’s RBR’s design?) to have a positive affect of airflow feeding the intake. I have heard this new iteration VET ran negatively affected the air feeding the intake though.

      1. I have also rather gotten the impression that Other teams feared the Aeroscreen might have been introduced primarily with Aero improvements in mind. But it is supposed to have had negative impact on air intake too, this being a large part of why RBR did not bother to further develop it @beejis60

    7. I agree with Hamilton. The key to the new PU rules might be the super expensive MGU-H but if they would do away with the 100kg battery we could slash the car weight significantly.

      1. The battery weighs between 20 and 25kg, per the rules.

    8. Looks like you got the wrong link in there for the Article about Grosjean @keithcollantine.

      For anyone looking for the article (before Keith changes the link above) is http://uk.reuters.com/article/uk-motor-f1-hungary-grosjean-idUKKBN1AC2I3

    9. Levente (@leventebandi)
      28th July 2017, 7:02

      Porsche confirmed zhe exit in favour of FE.
      Let’s not forget, that next year, LMP1 field will be boosted with a healthy number of privateers, and pre 90’s they were one of the backbones of the event. Like Joest, Pescarolo, and so on…

      1. RogerRichards
        28th July 2017, 8:42

        @leventebandi difference is that back when they were the ‘backbone’ they were running privateer manufacturer entry’s with in some cases factory backing.

        the wec/le mans running only with privateer’s running ‘spec’ lmp1/lmp2/lmp3 cars isn’t especially interesting. one of the main reasons the wec and le mans became so much more popular recently is because of the manufacturer’s making the top class interesting again.

        i know from my point of view that if the wec/le mans becomes a manufacturer-less, boring lmp2 spec series i wont be watching next year. the battles of the big manufacturer’s & all of the excitement they brought with the insane performance & all that is what drew me back into sportscars, without all that i see no reason to watch.

    10. I’m just trying to comprehend how the text messages between Grosjean and Toto would have gone. As in, how would you even start it?

      RM: Yo, I’ve recently seen that you said I don’t deserve to be in F1. Go suck a fat one.

    11. Roth Man (@rdotquestionmark)
      28th July 2017, 8:08

      I’ve also done the maths on how good Palmer is. Unfortunately my formulas are too complicated to put on here but I can assure you they’re accurate, it turns out good drivers are fast and bad ones are slow. The conclusion of my advanced formula is ‘Palmer = 💩.’

      Renault, just sign Kubica, everyone wants you to, even Palmer.

    12. Michael Brown (@)
      28th July 2017, 8:27

      Were the F1 cars from 2014-2016 (since they had the same dimensions as the cars with the previous engines) heavier than the 2013 cars with full fuel, even though 2013 used more fuel?

      1. @mbr-9 They certainly were in qualy and the end of the race, at least

    13. Halo: Looking at the drivers’ view, I wonder whether it’ll actually help visibility with sunset glare in Melbourne, Abu Dhabi etc?

    14. With recent developments (Porsche, Mercedes leaving WEC for FE and the recent announcements that France and the U.K. will ban petrol and diesel by 2040) can anyone else see any viable future for Formula One other than to go electric? Don’t get me wrong, I love the old Gas gussling V12s as much as anyone, but we must accept that they are in the past. FE isn’t ready yet, but surely in 10 years time we shall have parity?

      1. With only 53 years of petrol left at current production rates, F1 going electric at some point in the future is a guarantee. My guess is a series merge between F1 and FE when the technology is right.

        1. Petrol production rates will take a massive dive anyway due to transfer to electric vehicles for climate reasons. I imagine there’ll be plenty of petrol for hobbyists in the future, assuming it is allowed and the price isn’t prohibitive. F1 could therefore remain petrol if low manufacturer petrol cars are still allowed and those companies wish to compete. But major manufacturers like Honda, Renault and Mercedes will surely leave in a decade or 2 unless they want to flog some ultra-exclusive supercars. F1’s future will depend on the FIA, and whether it wants to have an archaic (but exciting and true to its roots) competition for privateers and supercar makers, or something modern with appeal to major manufacturers.

    15. The ICE/Electric engine doesn’t have to be an either/or question.
      Rewrite the rules to allow any type of engine with a simple energy equivalence formula to balance things out.
      Take the opportunity to once again make F1 the pinnacle of automotive design, rather than the ‘one size fits all’ spec series it has become.

    16. I fully agree with Lewis. When will this increase of minimum car weight come to an end? At some point, enough is enough even though it doesn’t really affect things like lap times or the quality of racing, for example.

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