Start, Spa, 2017

F1 to use longer DRS zone at Spa for Belgian GP

RaceFans Round-up

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In the round-up: Formula 1 will use a longer DRS zone at the exit of Raidillon on the Spa-Francorchamps circuit for the Belgian Grand Prix.

What they say

FIA race director Charlie Whiting revealed some drivers requested a DRS zone which ran through the flat-out Blanchimont corner.

Yes the DRS zone going up to Les Combes will be 100 metres longer. The other DRS zone is on the pit straight which I think doesn’t do an awful lot.

I did have a discussion with a couple of drivers this weekend about where else we could do it at Spa. It’s not really realistic, though some drivers fancied the idea of going through turns 16 and 17 [Blanchimont] with it open. But I’m not sure that’s a good idea.

Quotes: Dieter Rencken

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Comment of the day

Do Macau Grand Prix winners such as Dan Ticktum deserve to receive FIA superlicence points for success in F3’s blue riband event?

Not awarding points for the Macau Grand Prix is absurd. I guess it’s considered as just one event or round rather than a championship. But judging by its toughness and prestige, it should be rewarded some points.

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On this day in F1

  • On this day in 1954 Onofre Marimon was killed a crash during practice for the German Grand Prix on the Nurburgring Nordschleife

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Keith Collantine
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78 comments on “F1 to use longer DRS zone at Spa for Belgian GP”

  1. About this Guardian article: Since when being the cover of the GQ magazine (whatever that is) is a measure for anything?

    If being a 4-time world champion, pole positions record holder, second place on most wins record isn’t enough to qualify for “being serious about ones profession”, why would being in the cover of a magazine be?

    And for analysing his own lap on TV, does anyone think that that “detailed” analysis shows more commitment than actually driving the lap and getting pole and that somehow he wouldn’t know what he was doing on track?

    1. @paulk, (not joined yet ?) I get your point but one only needs to read some of the comments posted on social media sights to know that LH is often criticised for his off track lifestyle.

      1. @hohum, sure, I understand that. My point is what being on the cover of a magazine changes compared to actually getting pole positions and winning races?

      2. I think we should cut the guy some slack. He’s made the most of the opportunities that has come his way, and frankly, if you’re on 40 million quid a year, you can live however the @$/”! you want.

        The only annoying thing I find about Lewis is that I feel everything is a bit staged, the comment from JV last s spot on. Then again, that’s just how I’ve come to see the guy.
        It doesn’t matter one bit though, as long as he’s getting the job done one track, regardless of team orders, veto powers etc. Nobody had an issue when Schumacher and Senna had similar clauses in their contracts now did they?

        1. I also find him disturbingly non-genuine but perhaps that a good thing.

    2. Did you read the article?

    3. Peppermint-Lemon (@)
      31st July 2018, 8:26

      That’s the audience Hamilton wants to be recognised by though, to satisfy his ego and likely to make sure that when his music career takes over from f1 that he has some grumpy teenager to be interested in it

    4. @paulk the reference to GQ magazine is aimed at those who think that those activities detract from his passion for the sport. It isn’t referring to that as an achievement in itself, read the words with more care.

  2. ” drivers fancied the idea of going through turns 16 and 17 [Blanchimont] with it open. But I’m not sure that’s a good idea.”
    me neither, but it’ll be fun watching…

    1. Would be interesting to know which drivers asked for this.

      I can only think of 6 drivers who would be able to benefit from such a change!

      1. @eurobrun You may as well name them.


    1. Don’t care if there is no challenge to it and the poor guy leading has no hope to defend

    2. Thing is, I’d care slightly less if the overtaken driver could actually follow well enough to have a go at overtaking back again on the next lap.
      As it is, he’s off and away by a few corners time.

      Maybe there should be a penalty against using DRS? You use it on the straight to pass, but then you are forced to lose x Horsepower for 5 to 10s allowing the overtaken driver to fight back through the next sequence of corners!

      DRS at Spa spoils two traditional overtaking spots. The run down to Les Combes was always a good place for natural overtaking. And now we have this over the top DRS zone, no fool in their right mind would bother to try overtaking through Eau Rouge, just to give the place back again on the Kemmel Straight.

      1. @eurobrun I’m not sure that would help that much, as generally the delta you need to overtake a car ahead is well over a second, so the moment a car overtakes one, they can pass on the dirty air and immediately go a lot quicker. But even if it does, doesn’t that make a gimmick even more of one? I wouldn’t really want that to be honest, but, to each his own.

        1. @mashiat
          You’re right that it would be fighting gimmick with gimmick. I’d rather no DRS!
          I just think that DRS at the moment is too too much of an advantage. It would be nice if some way the overtaken car could at least fight back some way.
          But I don’t have the answer!

          1. @eurobrun ”I just think that DRS at the moment is too too much of an advantage” – DRS is rather ineffective these days, though. Most of the time an overtaking move isn’t guaranteed to happen (far from it) even with DRS activated.

    3. yawn inducing overtakes

  4. Renault are also ignoring the need to make a decent engine.

    1. True that. But then again… Red Bull is switching to Honda for next season. That’s going to be hilarious.

      1. Might be, but Inget the feeling that at least Honda will try to improve. Renault seems quite content to keep their heads in the sand and ignore reality.

        1. @dbradock

          I seriously doubt a team that has invested a lot of money and effort in it’s own factory team is just sitting there with a self of pride on it’s progress. Just because you don’t constantly hear about their ambitious catching up plans (like Honda always releases), doesn’t mean they aren’t trying. We just don’t know what’s going on behind the scenes.

          They are obviously playing it safe by not making ridiculous statements like Honda does. Honda’s power unit in 2017 was apparently as good as Mercedes’ at the end 2016… Pfft. They make ridiculous statements and then end up with a garbage can attached to the back of the car year after year. So yeah… Honda is trying for sure. Unfortunately for them they just aren’t capable enough.

          1. @Todford – in terms of Honda, they’ve been much “quieter” this year and have been making progress. whether its enough by 2019 remains to be seen but in reality I agree they won’t get near Mercedes/Ferrari.

            BUT… I suspect that they might actually get closer than Renault, although it may well be more of a hand grenade than the Renault PU.

            Renault on the other hand have consistently let out promises during the off season and then started going back on them almost as soon as they’ve released it. I’ve given them the benefit of the doubt since 2015 (2014 was the first year and they were way off so one would expect improvement from there), but since then they’ve made only modest gains (if at all) whilst still remaining far more unreliable than the big two so this year I’m quite happy to say they either don’t care or don’t recognise that there’s a problem with it.

            They’ve admitted that their budget is quite small which showed last year when they ran out of “new” replacement parts (and I suspect is going to happen again) – the one thing they won’t admit is that they’re down on power.

            So no – I do in fact doubt that they have an ambitious catch up plan and given that the PU regs will change for 2021 I’d suggest that they wouldn’t consider it worth the expense/effort as they haven’t yet developed their own Chassis well enough yet for it to make a difference.

            Since returning to F1, their focus has been (quite rightly) their own team. Its not ready yet so there’s no pressing need for them to improve the PU. Its not worth the budget.

            So I’ll retract the “head in sand” (sort of) and replace it with “don’t really care”. the only time we’ll see them truly put an effort in is when their Chassis improved enough to warrant it. At the moment they can afford not to bother. As for pride in their PU, I think 2015,16,17 demonstrated that they’re not all that concerned about that.

      2. But this isn’t about Honda is it? It is about Renault not improving their engine, neither in performance or reliability.

        Also it seems that a lot of people don’t understand that RBR-Renault and RBR-Honda will be substantially different. RBR nowadays is a client while with Honda it will be a partner. From my point of view if you are a client paying for something that has low quality and the improvements don’t come as they promise I would be quite annoyed too.

        Plus there is Horner, because most don’t like the guy, he must be wrong by default.

        Renault even tell us that they ignore the problem.

        Our bosses have stopped reading what Christian Horner is saying about us since 2015

        The thing is, it doesn’t seem like the Honda engine is the biggest hinder of performance currently for STR, so if they actually turn out to be good, or at least better than Renault, it won’t be as hilarious.

        1. @johnmilk

          Plus there is Horner, because most don’t like the guy, he must be wrong by default.

          Renault even tell us that they ignore the problem.

          Renault are under no obligation of listening to what Red Bull has to say. They are just a customer. Do you see Williams and Force India trying to throw their weight around at Mercedes because Ferrari’s stronger power unit is now helping Haas and Sauber jump them? No. They suck it up as most customers to engine suppliers do. But for some reason, Renault feel they are privileged enough to criticise their engine supplier as if he was a partner.

          The thing is, it doesn’t seem like the Honda engine is the biggest hinder of performance currently for STR, so if they actually turn out to be good, or at least better than Renault, it won’t be as hilarious.

          Sure. Maybe you should look at the engine components used table and how stellar the power output of the Honda is on power dependant circuits before commenting.

          The thing is .. that Renault don’t look as unreliable with the McLaren and their own factory team as they do with Red Bull. Instead of lashing out at the engine supplier, maybe Red Bull need to rethink on how they push the limits with their packaging. We all know how Honda performed when engine packaging was pushed to the limit. So yes, we will be getting a few good laughs in 2019 when the Red Bull fails to even make it to the grid on Sundays.

          1. C’mon you can’t believe half the stuff you are saying @todfod, they won’t make to the grid?

            I never said the Honda is more reliable than the Renault, did I? But even so, any Renault customer is closer to the limit than any Ferrari/Mercedes customer. No need to protend they have made huge improvements on this.

            Renault are under no obligation of listening to what Red Bull has to say. They are just a customer. Do you see Williams and Force India trying to throw their weight around at Mercedes because Ferrari’s stronger power unit is now helping Haas and Sauber jump them? No

            These are completely different situations, at least the Ferrari/Merc clients always had something that worked reasonably well, even in 2014. You can’t also compare how they have developed through the years, Renault upgrades have been weak, if you can call them upgrades at times.

            I’m also just a customer for many things, but if they don’t work as advertised I will complain. I hope you do the same, if you don’t I have plenty of stuff that I want to sell you

          2. @johnmilk

            Man.. If you go by Honda’s performance in 2015 and 2017, there’s a very high possibility that Red bulls will run through the allotted components even before the European season gets started. I think a huge reason why people are overlooking Honda’s poor form is because they avoided failures during pre season testing by using a new engine everyday. They’ve also got an awfully compliant and patient Toro Rosso that doesn’t voice any concerns publicly. But… Red bull is a completely different beast. They were trashing Renault a few months after they wrapped up their 4th championship. Do you think an engine supplier that has only achieved one race win in the past 20 years is going to be able to handle that pressure? Do you think partnering up with Red bull will magically improve Honda’s engine building capabilities?

            These are completely different situations, at least the Ferrari/Merc clients always had something that worked reasonably well, even in 2014.

            Not true. Ferrari had a poorer power unit than Renault in 2014. I don’t remember Sauber complaining too much.

            Also, Red bull isn’t sporting any Renault branding on their car. Apparently, Tag-Heuer makes their engines! Why should Renault care about a team that tries its best to remove Renault from any of it’s success. Why should Renault be answerable to anything Red bull has to say? Do you think Mercedes or Ferrari would supply a team an engine and then be ok if they rebranded the engine? And then complained about how they have not been given what was promised.

            I do agree that Renault has fallen short of deliverables. But Honda has fallen even shorter on theirs. So 50% of the engine suppliers have failed to deliver. So why bash Renault constantly?

            If I was Cyril and I had a customer that refused to acknowledge the presence of a Renault engine on his car and then constantly complained about my inefficiency, I wouldn’t give a c₹ap about what he’s said either.

          3. As I said earlier, this is not about Honda, it is about Renault. They’ve been under-performing, not as much as Honda, but still under-performing.

            The engine re-brand, I see you point, but that was a contractual discussion, they still pay Renault for the engines, and for all purposes it is Renault that makes them. While this would be much funnier if RBR complained about Tag-Heur. And no, of course that Ferrari and Mercedes wouldn’t allow a re-brand, well Sauber is powered by Alfa, but that is not the same thing. But this shows weakness on the Renault side, they were the ones allowing that situation.

            If I was Cyril I would give a c₹ap because flaws in a performance part are being pointed at, it would be a good idea to see what is going on instead of ignoring it, after all RBR is the benchmark that Renault always praised and looked up to in order to reduce their shortcomings

            So why bash Renault constantly?

            Why not bash Honda and Renault?

          4. @todfod

            Not true. Ferrari had a poorer power unit than Renault in 2014

            Not true as well, the Ferrari 059/3 was a very sophisticated power unit. However the lack of power and reliability problems experienced during the season were down to two main reasons :
            – The project was started very late and the ridiculous engine token system limited its development curve.
            – Performance was sacrificed in favor of aero which was the main reason behind adopting a water to air intercooler inside the V and a very small turbocharger.
            There were also problems related to the energy deployment that were progressively corrected by software updates. The 2014 Ferrari power unit was made by more or less the same team that made this year PU under Binotto supervision and served as a baseline on which the team built to reach the current levels of performance.
            The performance showed by RBR in Canada and Spa were down to a superior chassis that enabled the team to run a ridiculous low downforce set up that no other team was capable of running.

    2. +1

      Perhaps if they’d listened in 2015 and acknowledged that they were far behind (and even more so in 2015) their PU’s wouldn’t be so poor.

      Cyril keeps making the excuse that they won’t focus on performance improvements until they have “reliability” but they seem to have neither. He’s also conveniently ignoring the fact that even his own team has had reliability issues.

      And still it’s Horners fault ….. got to love Renault’s style.

      What will it be next year – Mclaren’s fault?

      1. I trust RBR and Newey that they know how to maximize an engine/Pu. They proved it with their four year Championship run. They have done the same in the current era, as they have actually won races while sitting third in the Constructors. It seems fairly common knowledge at this point that it is not a car or design issue, or marriage issue if you will, but one of lack of HP and reliability. As Renault’s only race winning team, it seems strange that Renault has not been listening to Horner, as without RBR where would Renault be?

        RBR at this point will be no worse off with a tighter relationship with Honda. They will know how to maximize the Pu and can only hope after doing their due diligence that Honda will keep improving and that they can move forward. Of course given the Honda/Mac thing there is every reason to have questions about this, but from RBR’s standpoint they have nothing to lose, but much they could gain. But we have to try to forget what Honda has done til now, and wait to see a 2019 Newey RBR car married to a 2019 Honda Pu, and then appreciate that it is a constant work in progress on top of that. I will certainly have all kinds of patience for RBR/Honda next year as it will only be the very beginning of the marriage. And it will be a much better marriage than they have had with Renault in recent years.

        1. COTD

        2. “It seems fairly common knowledge at this point that it is not a car or design issue”
          Really? I think it is fairly common knowledge that RBR has more problems than Renault and McLaren because of the aggressive aero design.

          “I will certainly have all kinds of patience for RBR/Honda next year as it will only be the very beginning of the marriage”
          You may have patience but Marco and Horner (and Max of course) sure as hell won’t. Honda better have a very competitive engine and soon or the honeymoon won’t last long.
          I don’t think Marco has the “we don’t expect to be competitive in 2019” attitude. He wants to win yesterday.

          Honda won’t be dealing with a mid tier teams like Torro Rosso or McLaren anymore – the microscope will be back on them big time.

  5. Robert McKay
    31st July 2018, 6:26

    The Les Combes DRS zone was, of course, famously short and ineffective previously…

  6. Not quite sure how to react to the Force India news. I’ve seen a lot of literally furious comments here over the years about how much of a devious criminal Vijay Mallya is. But Dieter Rencken recently painted a far brighter picture of the dedication and vision he brought to the team which has led them to where they are.

    Let’s just all hope that a solution can be found. First Manor fell, Sauber was lucky to find a lifeline thanks to Ferrari, now Force India, with Williams on the ropes. It wouldn’t take much for there to be only 14 cars on the grid…

    1. Perhaps now Vijay can take that long minimum security vacation to India that he so richly deserves.

  7. ColdFly (@)
    31st July 2018, 6:45

    This comment yesterday by @lums would have been my choice for COTD.

    We can do without the HAM vs VET comparisons please for once. So tiring reading the same comments from the same people every time in every post. Its like an addiction for some on here, they cant refrain from spewing their biased opinions everytime HAM/VET is mentioned.

    1. it’s the

    2. Nope. Either your with us or against us. :D

    3. @coldfly You mean that you want to spout your biased drivel and not have anyone call you out on it?

      1. ColdFly (@)
        31st July 2018, 22:20

        Clearly a case of Mistaken Identity, @patrickl.

        You’re mistaking me for somebody who cares what you drivel :P

        1. BlackJackFan
          1st August 2018, 3:18

          ColdFly (interesting moniker…) – I’m with you, and equally tired of these intellectual babies… lol.

          1. ColdFly (@)
            1st August 2018, 9:19

            Thanks BlackJackFan, yeah it’s a pity that a few of these trolling babies deteriorate the comment section of this site.

            It’s fun though to once in a while respond to their comments. Not that I expect that they will see the light, but you can feel the frustration in their follow up; typically shouting louder that they are right and convincing only themselves.

        2. @coldfly Yes that is what I said. You post biased drivel and don’t want to hear an explanation why it’s drivel.

          That’s what makes you such a biased and useless poster.

          1. ColdFly, it seems to be working…

  8. Max don’t apologise. Have the courage of your convictions. Would senna or most old school drivers apologise for something like that? No. It makes you seem human and not a pr robot like many drivers worldwide. Emotion runs high in sport.

    1. @darkstar I agree completely, if only because I know I’ve blown up just as badly over much smaller things…

      1. @darkstar I take your point but this somehow feels more like a team directive than Max actually regretting his wording. Also it is F1 that picks and chooses what radio comms we get to hear, and they didn’t have to let us hear that if they didn’t want to, so it is a bit contrived in that sense. Also, Senna has apologized for things after the fact too, and there’s no shame in that.

        I would be far more concerned if Max was so pc robot sensitive that upon dnf’ing his radio comm was “gosh darn it all am I ever upset…oh well…I’ll yuck it up with the Renault boys after the race.” ;)

  9. Who would I rather be: Renault dropping to just two teams next year, not making much obvious progress on performance or reliability – And McLaren for that matter in the same boat as Renault… Or Red Bull switching to Honda who are on the up it seems?

    1. @tonyyeb

      Or Red Bull switching to Honda who are on the up it seems?

      How are they on the up exactly? I got to admit they are on top of the engine components used, but that’s around it. They have been as close to Renault in 2016 as they are this year, and then dropped backwards again. Just because Red Bull have gambled with Honda doesn’t mean that Honda has gotten any better.

      It would be a miracle if Red Bull are any closer to the Ferrari and Mercs next year than they are this year.

      1. @todfod

        How are they on the up exactly?

        Well STR-Honda have 28 points at pretty much the half way point in the season, whereas McLaren-Honda (with the best chassis in F1 in 2017 lets not forget) had 30 points at the end of the season (or 9 points at this point in the season). So by that measure Honda is on the up – don’t think anyone can argue with that.

        1. @tonyyeb
          Depends on how you want to see it I guess.

          Mclaren with the best chassis on the grid still finished with 30 points or 9th in the WCC with Honda power. In 2018, with Renault power they’re already at 52 points at the midpoint of the season.. And that’s with a rubbish chassis.

          Honda are still the most unreliable power unit on the grid. They are also the poorest in terms of performance. They still power the 8th to 9th quickest constructor on the grid. So I see it as a plateau more than an ‘up’.

          1. @todfod

            Yes, I guess my point is more to say that performance can really only be measured by tangible things available to fans – like PU component use, points gained etc. They have used the most parts but also have gained three times as many points for the team running them at the same point in the season. I know this Adrian Newey quote gets used a lot but I’d rather have a “faster” unreliable engine than a “slow” reliable one. Funnily neither the Honda or the Renault are either of those when compared to the Merc or Ferrari PU.

            Regardless, Red Bull with Honda will be fascinating. So long as they get on top of reliability, I can’t see them losing third place in the Constructors Championship.

          2. Didn’t all Renaults except one get beaten by a Honda last race?

        2. I thin@tonyyeb

          28pts at halfway vs 30 at the end
          I really wish it was that easy to compare and infer that Honda is on the up. However, that needn’t be entirely true. Its as good as saying Renault engine is good because RBR are third in the constructors standings. By your measure Honda is on the up–not arguing with that. Cant.
          For now i think we can all agree that Red Bull Honda is an enigma. Even if you extrapolate the performance of STR Honda to RB Honda, Red Bull will still remain third in the WCC.
          I agree with @todfod–it will be miracle if Red Bull match the standards of Maranello and Brackley.

          1. @webtel

            As I said in my previous reply, as fans we can only go by what is available to us to compare. Things like component use is a categorical fact that the PU components aren’t as reliable as the manufacturer would want them to be. Points is another and yes they are subject to many factors external to a team, mainly how well the opposition perform / their reliability / driver quality etc. Straight line speed is no good because the car could be trimmed out etc.

            But as points are the only thing that matter (they dictate who wins, loses, prize money etc), that’s the one I used in my opinion that Honda are on the up.

      2. @todfod “It would be a miracle if Reb Bull are any closer to the Ferrari and Mercs next year than they are this year.”

        Yes true. F1 is hard and it will just be year one of a brand new marriage. RBR are already sat thinking it would have been a miracle if next year Renault would have helped them get any closer to Ferrari and Merc. It’s not just about what RBR will do with Honda next year, it’s about the future too. RBR sees more potential with Honda. Now we get to see them run with that. It’s going to be fascinating. We all know the stats with Honda since their return to F1 in this format, so it is easy to extrapolate and conclude abject failure for them with RBR, yet RBR have committed to them nonetheless. Can’t wait to see a 2019 Newey RBR car with a 2019 Honda Pu and then let the games begin. I see more potential for the future with RBR/Honda than with the current state of RBR/Renault, and I expect next year will show teething issues as with any new relationship between engine and chassis makers. When they have their first Pu failure, which they and all teams will have, RBR will remember that they had those with Renault too.

  10. ”It’s not really realistic, though some drivers fancied the idea of going through turns 16 and 17 [Blanchimont] with it open. But I’m not sure that’s a good idea.”
    – Well, you had the courage to put an activation zone on the S/F straight of Silverstone, which subsequently meant that you made it an option for the drivers to drive through Abbey with DRS activated, so, therefore, driving through Blanchimont with DRS activated with the current downforce and grip-levels shouldn’t be as big a problem as it was with Abbey since that corner is nowhere near as tight as Abbey.

  11. Ben (@scuderia29)
    31st July 2018, 11:46

    I personally think DRS is the biggest detriment to formula 1, and the proposal to lengthen drs zones, making drs more power etc is very worrying moving forwards, for example when Hamilton sliced through the field in Germany via drs, it wasn’t exciting, nor challenging for him, another complaint would be how in recent years drivers tend not to try and fight front runners in situations like that. But back to DRS I’m so surprised looking forwards to 2021 there’s been no work towards removing this horrible gimmick

    1. Agreed on every level.

      The days of Imola 05 are long dead. Why even bother to defend now, what is the point?

    2. @scuderia29 Why are you making the assumption that there’s been no work towards removing drs? I would suggest that is exactly what they are working on for 2021 with the two cars they have sitting in a wind tunnel. Brawn has never been a fan of drs and he knows it is just an unpopular gadget to mask the BE era addiction to downforce, and with Liberty’s efforts to promote closer racing in the future that will mean drs will not be ‘necessary’ as the cars will be much less harmed in dirty air.

      1. I will believe it when i see it. DRS was supposed to be a temporary solution when it was introduced all those years ago. We had two major rule overhauls since then, and plenty of chances to actually fix the root cause and get rid of DRS.

        I dont see any evidence that the rule changes for 2021 will be any different. For 2019 the DRS will get even more powerful, and in 2021 we will probably have push to pass voting and joker laps to spice things up.

        Also, removing DRS would mean I will no longer have to listen to the Czech commentator say “DRS system” for the millionth time (stands for Drag Reduction System System) prompting a slight twitch from my part every time. His pronunciation of “Louis” Hamilton has a similar effect. Lewis should watch the Czech broadcast if he thinks thet Sky did not portray his awesomeness at Silverstone fully. In fact all people complaining about crofty and co. should watch it.

        1. @vjanik Actually I don’t think they have had plenty of chances to fix the problem at all. BE gave the top teams a lot of power and the teams have only been motivated to help themselves. We are still dealing with BE era cars. Teams have been free to add aero downforce and make as much wake as they can, because they have not been asked to look at the bigger picture of closer racing. Until now. Now that Liberty is able to start weaning the teams off of the BE era cars, we see the teams agreeing to the front wing changes for next year as a relatively small gesture toward closer racing that they know Liberty is mandating for 2021, which is when the cars will truly no longer be BE influenced cars.

          2021 will see the research Brawn and his team have been compiling put into effect, with no drs because cars will be able to race more closely together. Don’t be fooled by the addition or lengthening of drs zones this year and next. They are just temporarily working with what they have which is from the BE era, and trying to improve on the terrible phenomenon right now of these cars unable to follow for long without ruining their front tires, and thus processions. What we see going on now and next year is barely relatable to what is in store for the first Liberty cars in 2021.

          1. As i said, i will believe it when i see it. Talk is cheap. Until you actually have to do something.

            There was a lot of talk about the 2021 engines. Now it looks like we will have the same engines after all. (not a compliant just an observation/reminder).

    3. @scuderia29 I disagree with you on that. I find the long-standing ‘following’ problem to be by far the biggest detriment if any to F1. DRS is relatively ineffective these days and has been like that more or less since the beginning of the hybrid era. Furthermore, Hamilton’s fightback through the field from P14 on the grid to eventually winning the race in Germany was much more down to the significant pace advantage his team’s car has over the cars of all the teams other than Ferrari and Red Bull.

      1. nah, on the old cars he would of be stuck for a lot lot longer. Used to take a long time to get through the field. Remember michael being stuck behind Hill in Suzuka for example. Plenty more examples if you had to think about it.

      2. @jerejj Exactly. This overly simplistic “DRS must go stance” is incredibly tiring. It’s like Trump saying the (illegal) Mexicans must go.

        Nothing less but populist nonsense for a problem which needs a much more complex solution.

        Most of Hamilton’s overtakes in Hockenheim had nothing to do with DRS anyway.

        1. No they were due to the other main problem in F1, the gap in performance between the top 3 teams and the rest of the field.

  12. What the…? Have they not seen any of the previous races at Spa during the DRS era? The zone is already ridiculously overpowered. I suppose they want to have the cars passing each other at the start of the straight so that the overtaker can have a nice and safe gap before the braking zone for Les Combes.

  13. Martijn (@)
    31st July 2018, 12:35

    I guess that’s it for Red Bull then for this season. Very unprofessional from Renault and Horner should take blame as well. I remember being appalled by him critisizing Renault directly after 4 World Titles. Daniel and Max should reconsider their position.

    1. The only time I was surprised at Horner’s comments was, like you, in 2014, and that was because I thought it was fairly commonly understood that Renault had delayed work on the new Pu because they wanted to ensure less distraction from RBR sealing up their 4th Championships in a row in 2013. If it was a sacrifice to do that I thought it was one they were willing to take to ensure the 4th one while it was in their grasp.

      But here were are four years later and still Renault lags, and given that we are past the RBR-Honda confirmation it only makes sense each side feels more ‘comfortable’ slagging the other.

    2. BlackJackFan
      1st August 2018, 3:35

      I’m no fan of Horner, and had no sympathy with the RBR/Renault debacle a few years back, but…
      I can’t help thinking that any company that doesn’t listen to its customers, and ‘proudly’ admits it doesn’t care what a customer even thinks, is not a company I would want to do business with.
      So now, I am rooting for RBR/Honda over any Renault powered team. Whatever happens, it hopefully won’t be as bad as the current situation.
      Just my 2 cents.

  14. Not strictly speaking on topic but remember when F1 cars could do this:

    Gerhard Berger (Ferrari) & @markblundellf1 (Ligier-Renault) battling it out wheel to wheel on the long straights of Hockenheim for 4th. Mark would go on to finish 3rd, his second podium finish of the season. German GP, 25th July 1993. #F1— F1 in the 1990s 🏎 (@1990sF1) July 25, 2018

  15. Considering that the Kemmel Straight DRS zone at Spa has always tended to be too powerful there is no reason at all to make it longer.

    This is one of my biggest criticisms of DRS, There putting it in places that were traditionally already good overtaking spots & as a result having DRS there makes passing too easy (As has been the case on the Kemmel Straight since 2011) yet instead of removing the zone they have doubled down & made it longer which is likely only going to result in passing been even easier than it already was & this isn’t a positive in terms of producing good, exciting & memorable racing.

    1. +1 The excitement of the Kemmel Straight and the like was knowing they were just about long enough to make a pass. Making it easier removes any suspense.

  16. The other DRS zone is on the pit straight which I think doesn’t do an awful lot.

    So why is it there?

  17. Missed read the title, thought it said “F1 no longer to use DRS zone in Belgium”… maybe wishful thinking, oh how we can dream!

  18. Thomas Bennett (@felipemassadobrasil)
    1st August 2018, 9:13

    DRS zone in Blanchimont? Yikes.

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