Brendon Hartley, Toro Rosso, Yas Marina, 2018

Hartley says he has “unfinished business” in F1

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In the round-up: Brendon Hartley, who has lost his F1 drive to Alexander Albon

What they say

Speaking before Albon’s move to Toro Rosso was confirmed, Hartley said he’d demonstrated progress during his first full season of F1:

Obviously I feel like I have unfinished business in Formula 1. I’ve finished the season much stronger than I started.

I had some tough times, a lot of pressure put on. I think I reacted well and I’ve come out the end of the season a much stronger individual, driver, and really happy with my progression through the season.

I haven’t always had opportunities to score points, sometimes outside of my control, definitely some missed opportunities in the beginning. But I’ve been a good team player all year and I know I’ve very much contributed to the performance.

Quotes: Dieter Rencken

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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37 comments on “Hartley says he has “unfinished business” in F1”

  1. Billy Monger is fast in that extraction test!

  2. No, I’d say Mr. Hartley’s business is finished. Lots more deserving drivers.

  3. I like Brendon as person. I want him to do well. But let’s be honest, he didn’t perform this season.

    1. Agreed – I wish him well, and hope he lands on his feet in a series of his choosing.
      He could even regale his compatriots with horror stories of F1’s tyre management!

    2. True. He seems like a good guy and a strong racer in other series, but I don’t think F1 is his cup of tea.

    3. Fortunately Brendon has already earned himself a solid reputation in other motor-sports and I am sure his future career is still very much secured.
      Best wishes to the guy.

  4. Hartley has no business in f1, he had over 20 races and showed he isn’t fast enough. The f1 seasons are so long now that these guys actually get more time to prove themselves. One start that shocks me is verstappen already has been in 80 races. Kubica did 76 . With these extraction tests, the disabled drivers are the fastest for some reason, more determination. Last year kubica got the fastest ever recorded f1 extraction time, after keyboard warriors said he won’t get to F1 because he will fail the 5 second extraction test.

    1. With these extraction tests, the disabled drivers are the fastest for some reason, more determination.

      Determination is one factor (particularly for Kubica). In Billy’s case, there are two other factors:
      – Upper-body strength. Ever see a healthy person in a wheelchair who doesn’t have good upper-body strength? Their need to swap in and out of a wheelchair gives them tremendous strength in lifting themselves up and swinging out.
      – No lower extremities. There’s lesser that they need to swing out to clear the cockpit rim & halo.

      The last point might sound a bit crass on my part, but I don’t intend it that way at all. These people have been dealt a crappy hand, but instead leverage that into an advantage. Awesome stuff. In their place, I’d probably be curled up with an amber-coloured friend.

      1. Your points are not crass at all – when I spoke to Billy on Sunday I asked precisely these questions in similar wording, and he freely spoke about the situation.

        What happened to Billy is a fact of (his) life, and there is every reason to discuss his disabilities openly where relevant in a sporting context provided it’s done sensitively – which you have.

        1. Thank you, Dieter.

        2. Well said @phylyp and @dieterrenken – I think that is one of the things that’s so impressive about Billy, he has accepted what happened, but isn’t letting it stop him in pursuing his dream of driving in the top of the field in motorsport, adapting and still showing his great talent. I hope he finds the budget to do F3 next year.

      2. These people have been dealt a crappy hand

        Bit harsh on Kubica…

        provided it’s done sensitively

        couldn’t help myself

        1. @hollidog – oh, I missed that! I’d originally intended to write “In their shoes, I’d probably be curled up…” before revising it, but I totally missed that connotation you pointed out. 😯

          1. Amd that one would be harsh om Billy. Come on @phylyp, get a grip

          2. get a grip

            @johnmilk – I tried that, but she slapped me with a restraining order.

        2. Oh you evil guy you …. and me for laughing I suppose :)

          1. @phylyp
            Nice post mate, I hope Kubica does well next year, he needs a better car to start with.

            Billy is such an inspiration, what a brave young lad! I hope he keeps racing and does his greatest, not sure he will get to F1 though, hope he proves me wrong.

            Hartley was an impressive come back to F1, I hoped he got another chance but he probably didn’t do enough to stay – he is a World Champion in WEC and can hold his head high, all the best to the Kiwi !!

        3. yeh nah nah nah nah nah (in aussie)

  5. Perhaps Hartley is finished as a F1 driver, but other opportunities within F1 either in management or in an team advisory role might be on the horizon. Perhaps the development driver at Williams is on the cards?

    Wonder what engine was in the McLaren that JJ drove. Was last years car so an old Honda engine or a new Renault?

    1. Wonder what engine was in the McLaren that JJ drove. Was last years car so an old Honda engine or a new Renault?

      I’d think the packaging differences between manufacturers would make it extremely difficult and infeasible (time/effort/cost) to retrofit a Renault into last year’s chassis (the PU is a stressed member of the chassis, so it’s not a drop-in replacement). I’d expect that as part of their now-expired contract, McLaren have a small stockpile of Honda engines+spares.

      I’d go so far as to say that even year-on-year PUs from the same manufacturer would not be a drop-in replacement, although retrofitting might be easier if the fundamental philosophy stayed the same.

      1. The car was an MP-28 I think, the 2013 (ie. Mercedes V8) car @phylyp and Gerrit

      2. Isn’t the engine management system the same between the engines? If it is then that would make it easier to fit another engine into the car than if the engine management system between two manufacturers was different. I suspect that was partly the reason Brawn GP was able to fit the Mercedes engine into their car after Honda had pulled out of F1.

        1. @drycrust – I believe the ECU hardware is common to all cars, and is made by McLaren Technologies. The software that goes onto it is custom to each PU manufacturer, however. I’d still think it is the physical constraints that form the biggest challenge – e.g. the size and shape of the radiators define the sidepods, the packaging of the engine/ES/fuel tanks all govern the coke-bottle shape and engine covers, and the gearbox & casing will have to be adapted to fit to a new engine.

          Swapping engine manufacturers late can be done if heading into a competitive season, but it seems unlikely anyone would want to do it for an old car that is now only used for show/demo purposes (unless the adaptation is done as part of some training).

          @bosyber – thank you, that would probably be the easiest approach to circumvent the difficulties from the Honda-McLaren divorce :-)

          1. The engines are stressed members but, if I recall correctly, maybe even during the V8 era enough of the parameters of the engines were fixed such that you I believe CAN bolt the engine to the chassis with relatively little effort, BUT as you pointed out the ancillaries are another story.

    2. The McLaren was from 2013 – it had the old Merc engine.
      Alonso did a couple of laps and JJ did 28 – obviously it wasn’t a Honda:)

      1. did 28 [laps] – obviously it wasn’t a Honda

        Honda can’t catch a break from fans :-)

        1. @phylyp

          Honda can’t catch a break from fans :-)

          If anything…. I think it takes a break once too often ;)

          1. @todfod – LOL, nicely done :-)

  6. Fudge Kobayashi (@)
    27th November 2018, 9:59

    The helmet swap video was cool, Seb’s tiny head comment made me laugh. Good sportsmanship all round, shame that many fans don’t follow their example.

  7. And So do I, oh wait…
    – A bit weird to see Hamilton and Vettel wearing each other’s helmets.

    1. @jerejj – “until a championship do us part” :-)

  8. he will have to finish the business on the PlayStation

  9. I would have liked to have seen Brendon go around for one more season to get a proper evaluation of his F1 skills. He was dealt a tough hand as Honda were clearly taking so many penalties for RBR and coming from enduro so green it was always going to take some time to settle & gain that much needed confidence. He did alright on the back half of the season. He wasn’t been made to look like a fool such as Palmer was a few years back. F1 teams are chewing up these guys at such a rapid rate as all teams are searching for that next 18yo megastar. Its a bit unfair..

    1. Lewis & Seb are being very smart. The united bromance lovefest they are showing towards each other throughout this season is shutting down the media. “Media Man” would be itching to clone the next Senna v Prost feud.. Well done guys!

  10. Hartley looks a little bit like Macaulay Caulking, doesn’t he?

  11. Interesting comments from Honda. Brendon was not just at Torro Rosso for his driving ability. At least Honda had to decency to say thanks, unlike Torro Rosso.

    –“References to Hartley were curiously absent in Toro Rosso’s official press release announcing the change in driver line-up. On the flip-side, Honda have issued a statement thanking Hartley for his help with developing their engine platform over the season as they look to become the supplier for all four Red Bull cars on next year’s grid.

    “Everyone at Honda enjoyed working with Brendon throughout the year,” said Toyoharu Tanabe, Honda’s technical director.

    “He was very strong on the engineering side, always giving very precise and useful feedback, based on his great experience working with hybrid power units and as a double world champion and Le Mans winner in LMP1. “That feedback accelerated our development in terms of set-up work, which helped us progress over the course of the year.

    “Thank you Brendon, and we wish you all the very best for the future.”

    “On behalf of Honda, I would like to express my thanks to Brendon for all his hard work this year,” added Honda motorsport boss Masashi Yamamoto.

    “It gave everyone at Honda so much power and confidence in what we were doing this year after several difficult seasons. I particularly remember when he qualified sixth at our home race in Suzuka. That meant a lot to Honda. “We will miss him and wish him all the best for the future.”–

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