Stoffel Vandoorne, McLaren, Albert Park, 2018

Vandoorne not planning to race elsewhere while in F1

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In the round-up: Stoffel Vandoorne says he isn’t considering dovetailing his F1 duties with another series as team mate Fernando Alonso is doing.

What they’re saying

Vandoorne was asked whether he would like to race in another series alongside F1 like Alonso:

Specifically now, I’m not really looking into that. Obviously I talk a lot with Zak [Brown] because we’re all freaks about motorsport and everything that has four wheels on it. I think Bathurst is a very cool race, I had some friends racing there as well. We’ll see what the future holds.

It’s not something I’m specifically looking at. My focus remains 100% Formula One and for me the most important is to succeed in Formula One. This is my number one target. In the future we’ll see what opportunities arise and if it fits with our schedules, why not. But by main focus is Formula One now.

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Comment of the day

Should simpler car controls be on the F1 agenda for 2021?

One change I’d love to see introduced for 2021 is a massive reduction in buttons and driver-operated switches and modes. Cut the number of permitted engine modes and so on, and force them to make the next generation of power units functional with only a few more options than the owner of a high-end road car might have.

Obviously they can’t dumb the wheel down entirely, but any step to get away from the whole ‘driving a very fast computer’ thing would be a positive for me.
Neil (@Neilosjames)

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32 comments on “Vandoorne not planning to race elsewhere while in F1”

  1. pastaman (@)
    31st March 2018, 0:24

    @keithcollantine I am liking the quotes presented at the start of round ups that aren’t behind a link. Something interesting to read right off the bat.

  2. I completely agree with comment of the day. It would be nice to see simple settings, which will hopefully allow them to push more.

    The surface was looking a bit patchwork, so we decided to resurface the whole thing while we had the chance, and we have gone for the best surface we can

    Silverstone was probably the least patchwork bit of tarmac in the UK! I’m curious to know what they mean by ‘the best surface’. Presumably they’re referring to the most durable, but what does that mean for the grip and tyre wear?

    1. It’s says in the article that they expect the grip level to rise and that there will be more grip in the rain and far less bumps, as high downforce cars over time can create a ripple effect in the surface in some areas, this interferes with the big bike racers lines on coner entry, which is the main motivation behind the resurfacing as DORNA had been pushing very hard for it

  3. When you read about Vettel in Motorsport Magazine, follow the link below to the Jim Clark article and watch the 15min. video of the 1965 FrenchGP, no down-force, 1.5L naturally aspirated cars at their zenith and no need for a spending cap. This message brought to you by “Rosetinted” spectacles “see life better”.

    1. @hohum Everything used to be better in the past, even the future.

      1. @flatsix, quite – I mean, I don’t wish to disparage Hohum, but I am sure that if, back in 1965, he came across somebody of a comparable age telling him how wonderful things were in the pre-WW1 era of 1912 (53 years earlier, which is now how far back 1965 is to today), I am pretty sure that Hohum would have dismissed them as being blinded by nostalgia.

        1. I thought he was being tongue in cheek hence the rosetinted spectacle comment.

          1. @robbie, he may have meant the comment to be tongue in cheek, but his behaviour makes the comment seem more of a statement of fact.

            Whenever he talks about the racing of the past, pretty much every single post I’ve seen from him seems to be focussed on what the racing was like in the mid 1960’s, maybe the late 1960’s at a push: even cars from the 1970’s started to “become too similar” for his liking. The comment may have been meant ironically, but his behaviour is such that it comes across as somebody whose life really is frozen in about 1965 and he can only see the world through that fixed perspective.

      2. lol and Porsche races @flatsix engines forever, not.

        1. @hohum I don’t engage in discussion no more, just try to light hearted and funny, and fail at it anyway. Just trying to rile up @flatsix because there’s not that many flatsixes.

          On your comment, I guess what you are trying to say is that you wished f1 was “young” again.

          You get older, you learn a few things but you lose a bit of life, vitality, things become less exciting. Life becomes less new, predictable, and secondly, failure, the circle of life, it’s not all fairy tales.

          These days f1 is too perfect, Carey pointed this out. Honestly, I wouldn’t change progress.

          I think we wouldn’t be able to criticize f1 if the rule-makers had just let it loose, have f1 forge it’s path, a natural evolution. The rule-makers change things that lead to having to make more change and more and more changes to perfect something that’s inherently imperfect.
          In the end, I don’t know how f1 would be like but I would at least know that, f1 would still be f1. What we have now, is something we all question, is “this” f1?

      3. @flatsix,@robbie,@peartree and @ANON (hiding), I am in no way calling for a return to 1960’s technology (or safety standards), however I think there were certain aspects of the racing in that era that have been lost to us. In a field of only 18 cars there was a wealth of difference in the engines, flat 12’s, V12’s athwartship, V8’s, flat 8’s and more all on display, there were no wings on the cars so the drivers relied on suspension geometry and their ability to control the lack of adhesion, there were no planned pit-stops, the cars raced from flag to flag. There were also no palatial Motorhomes or hospitality centers, teams were small so even the principals got their hands dirty, and finally, all the revenue went to the teams and promoters to finance their efforts. A Lance Stroll of the sixties was more likely hire an engineer to build him a (hopefully better) car to race than pay a team for a drive. F1 today is so restricted and refined that a breakthrough design advance is impossible, and fans of middle age or younger have never known F1 without pit stops, without uniformity and without the circus ,but F1 could still be great (and was) without them, that’s why I say watch and learn.

        1. @hohum, @peartree Calm down guys, I just made a funny remark about thinking back about the past, didn’t want to make any statement with it.

          1. @flatsix I know, it is a quite clever remark.

          2. @flatsix,@peartree, and the very knowledgeable but uncontactable ANON, thanks for responding my comment was mostly a reply to ANON who virtually accuses me of being a flat-earther but I linked you and @robbie in FYI, I do have a sense of humour so don’t hold back.

  4. I Don’t think the V8’s delivered more action than the F1’s this year. Both races were relatively sedate IMO.
    Sure, other circuits do provide more action in both series, but I think the NZ Herald was over-generalising there!

    1. I agree. The (V8) Supercars seem to have two kind of races at Albert Park: either a crashfest with a pretty much constant safety car, or a boring procession. I think the track is just not suited for the tintops, especially when comparing the track to the rest of the calendar.

  5. I don’t really agree with the COTD as I don’t find the steering wheels too complicated.
    – There’s one thing that could have an impact on the lap time improvement around Silverstone as well as the resurfaced tarmac, and that is the weather should this year’s qualifying be entirely dry throughout. Yes, last year the track had already wholly dried (or almost at least) by the time the eventual pole lap took place, but the pole time could’ve been even faster than it was had there been no rain at all either during or shortly before the session, so if next time around it’ll be dry throughout then that should have an impact on the lap time as well compared to last season.

    1. +1 The steering wheels look complicated but only because we don’t use them. It’s just another thing to learn, it’s not like every button is used every lap and with things like brake bias it’s there choice to keep adjusting it not a necessity and I’d rather the driver had these options than it done for them (except engine modes).

      As a comparison modern tractors have 10 times the amount of buttons and it’s overwhelming at first but you soon learn which ones to concentrate on.

      1. @jerejj @glynh +2 It’s not how many buttons there are but how drivers operate that. Are driver had been given a set of manual to tune it up themselves or drivers being under nonstop coach by pit crew with heavyweight GPU computer to show them the right input.

        F1 cars can be as technologically sophisticated as they want but there should be a rule to put driver as the main factor.

  6. I don’t really agree with the COTD as I don’t find the steering wheels too complicated.

    I… was that missing a sarcasm tag?

    1. @Anthony No, it wasn’t. I wasn’t even trying to be sarcastic in the first place, LOL.

  7. Interesting news today in Dutch media: Dutch Formula 2 driver Nyck de Vries (racing for Prema) mentioned that he will get a race seat for McLaren F1 in 2019 if he becomes champion in Formula 2. This was promised by Zak Brown and also written on contract.

    1. Are you sure it wasn’t meant to be released tomorrow, considering it’ll be April 1st..

      1. @meko1971 Nope (no April fool). Nyck de Vries mentioned it personally in a Dutch talk show.

        1. I’m sure Norris would disagree

      2. Jason Considering how much money Verstappen has attracted that would be a good idea.

    2. Jason, are you sure about that? I’ve seen a few suggestions that what de Vries said seems to have been mistranslated or misrepresented slightly.

      I’ve seen it suggested what Brown had said to de Vries and Norris ahead of this year’s Formula 2 season was that the most successful driver of the two would then be given the first opportunity to step up into Formula 1. Now, it seems that whilst de Vries hoped that opportunity for a race seat could be as soon as 2019, it seems he didn’t say that the more successful driver would definitely get a race seat in 2019.

      Some have suggested what de Vries was outlining was actually more similar to what Leclerc or Ocon had at the start of their careers, where they had the opportunity to test the car in free practise sessions and were guaranteed a minimum amount of time in an F1 car. Ocon and Leclerc did also get the support of their backers when opportunities arose elsewhere on the grid (at Force India and Sauber respectively), but whilst the end goal is likely to be to get a seat at Mercedes and Ferrari respectively, neither driver was guaranteed a seat there.

      1. @anon. Well, it’s a bit unclear. The Dutch media are really talking about a race seat. But it could also be what you have said (the opportunity to test the car in some free practise sessions).

        1. I’m a bit wary given that, as far as I can tell, it seems to be the journalists reporting on the story who have talked about getting a “race seat”.

          It looks like de Vries’s response came when being asked if beating Norris and becoming the Formula 2 champion would give him a chance to get a place in F1, and de Vries’s response to that was yes (before then talking about how that was written into his contract). It looks like that was interpreted by some journalists to mean that he could be racing in F1 next season, but de Vries himself doesn’t seem to have said that he would actually get a race seat.

          As an aside, when Norris was talking about the build up to the 2018 Formula 2 races, he recently revealed that McLaren have let him use their simulator to gain additional experience, both with the Formula 2 cars and with the circuits he’ll be racing at. Now, there were some who accused Williams of letting Stroll use their simulator when competing in Formula 3 and said that it gave him an unfair advantage – now that it seems that Norris is also doing the same thing, will they be prepared to accuse Norris of gaining an unfair advantage by using McLaren’s simulator?

  8. Don’t really agree with COTD.

    There are a lot of buttons & stuff on the wheel but I don’t really see that as a problem, It’s a part of the sport now & other categories (WEC for instance) have far more scattered around the cockpit.

    It’s also not as if the drivers are constantly playing around with every button or every mode, There’s stuff there that is only there in order to fix a problem (Fail a sensor for example). When you look at the wheel it looks complex, But when your using it it’s probably far less & under normal race conditions there’s probably only a small few things that they actually use.

    It’s like some modern sports cars, You have all these buttons & on some of them you can go into the computer & play around with traction control, ABC, Stability management, Gearbox settings, Suspension firmness & more but under normal driving you don’t need to play around with any of it. It’s there if you want to or for when you need to but 95% or more of the time you don’t need to worry about it.

    1. I Agree with you guys on this @stefmeister, @jerejj and @glynh and disagree with the CotD.

      Sure, there’s quite a lot of buttons etc on the steering wheel – as it is the only place they have buttons.

      All of them have a purpose, and the reason there are many of them is partly because we have the driver do things that the car electronics could do automatically if the rules allowed (but since it is a SPORT we want the driver to do them, not a computer, or a team of engineers sitting in the factory).
      In a supercar/hypercar many of those things are pre programmed in a few “standard” setting choices (see how the likes of Ferrari, McLaren, Aston etc finetune cars to tracks for filming and tests), in F1 the drivers have to make those choices themselves (or be slower by not using them to their full advantage), that is part of the challenge.

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