Start, Interlagos, 2018

Steiner expects big teams will start 2019 further ahead

RaceFans Round-up

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In the round-up: Rules changes for the 2019 F1 season will give the biggest teams the chance to pull further ahead of the midfield, according to Haas’s Guenther Steiner.

What they say

Steiner was asked if there was a risk the likes of Mercedes and Ferrari will be even further ahead in 2019:

Absolutely that risk is always there. But with the gap being this big it should [be], and couldn’t be any different. Because this is good people working at a high level and if they’ve got this more resources they should be doing better than the other ones, otherwise they’re doing something wrong.

So I think in the beginning the gap should be bigger between the big ones and the smaller ones because there’s just so many more resources to get there. And they have more resources, they get their quicker.

Quotes: Dieter Rencken

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Comment of the day

How much sympathy does Valtteri Bottas deserve for losing victory in Baku?

I’m sorry, but losing first place because you hit something you couldn’t see is unfortunate, but not the end of the world. I’d apply the ‘You weren’t meant to win’ philosophy. There are F1 drivers who will never challenge for a podium place in their entire career because the car they use just won’t let them. Be grateful for what you have.

Of course, if you saw the debris and decided to run them over then you’ve only got yourself to blame, so again, accept this as a lesson, ‘you should have known better.’

I would have thought being told to relinquish first place to your team mate simply because it suits team management is far more morale-sapping, especially when they then go on saying how much they value your contribution and how they want you to do well in future races.
Stephen Crowsen (@Drycrust)

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On this day in F1

December 24th

  • Born today in 1949: One-time F1 race starter Warwick Brown

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December 26th

The RaceFans Round-up will return on December 27th.

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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21 comments on “Steiner expects big teams will start 2019 further ahead”

  1. I mean we kind of know what Steiner’s saying right, we’ll still have our top 3 (4 if Renault can get up there, 2 if Honda falter) followed by F1.5. Nothing about the 2019 regulations will change this.

    However, the real question for ’19 is whether cars will be able to follow any closer without losing aero/tyre performance. Even if we can get closer racing within these unwritten categories, F1 could be in a great place and incredibly exciting. If we have another year like the last few ehh, it’s not the end of the world as fans regularly point out. Overtaking and incredibly close/fair racing has never really been a hallmark of every F1 season. It will just mean Brawn will have to look at even more radical approaches to technical changes for the future.

    Still a few more years to see if budget caps actually get implemented, and even more to see if they work to fix what Steiner’s talking about.

    Neither issue has a quick fix, but that they’ve been realised, are being talked about openly, and are working towards improving are all great signs.

    (p.s Merry Christmas everyone! Hope you’re all enjoying a wonderful holiday season.)

    1. It is still going to be F1 and F1.5 …. the interesting part of 2019 will be the shuffle … newbies … the racing for the best of the rest. Who can get the handle on the new set-up. Both driver and team need to get it together very quick.

    2. I expect the gap to be pretty big at the start of the year, much larger than we had this year. It’s possible that one of the big three will get it a lot more right and there conceivably could be a gap at the front like 2014 so we could again be looking at the same sort of farce.

      Yes it will be interesting if cars are able to follow more closely but given the bigger teams suggest it won’t make any difference, I suspect next year could be pretty average.

      1. I don’t expect too much in terms of closer racing, but I do hope there is at least an incremental change for the better. At least they are trying a relatively small thing ahead of the big changes for 2021, but yes of course we have known for decades that any changes are going to be tackled more easily by the more resourced teams.

        But one thing that will bug me is if the front tires still aren’t sturdy enough to handle some movement from a car being in dirty air. That will be ridiculous to me if they haven’t been mandated by Brawn, or if they fail to fulfill a mandate if one is in place, to at least make the front tires incrementally less sensitive to dirty air while there is this tweak in the front wings. I mean, why mandate different front wings if the tires stay the same and hamper the goal the front wings were meant to achieve? The tires need to be at least a little sturdier and have at least a little wider temp operating window, even if they are still very degrady.

  2. The RaceFans Round-up will return on December 27th.

    Ah, the things that terrifies us!

    Merry Christmas to you and yours, Keith, as well as my fellow fanatics!

    1. And you as well. Merry Christmas all!

    2. Merry Christmas all.

    3. No round-up? I will build my own round-up, with blackjack and hookers.

  3. Love how Renault like to feel sorry for themselves.

    I’m sure they did when RBR won 4 years on the trot. They have to come to grips with the fact that in 4 years since the turbo hybrid era (that they pushed for), their PU has been average to very poor.

    It’s unfortunate for them that they were the supplier to a top team as it left them massively exposed in terms of media coverage but by the same token, each year they have been their own worst enemy by initially promising “next year we’ll have a much better PU” only to retract that just before the start of the new season.

    I see again they’re promising next years PU will be really good. I’d love it to be (I a Dan fan) but their track record doesn’t fill me with confidence.

    1. Jonathan Parkin
      24th December 2018, 4:58

      I concede these points however Red Bull didn’t help themselves either.

      Yes they’ve had a fallow period but at least they have still got podiums and race wins unlike McLaren

      But by continually growling about their engine and threatening to pull out simply because they can’t win championships is rather biting the hand that feeds them. But simply they can’t win the championships every year but they seem to think it’s their divine right

      1. Do not forget rbr is a paying customer and not like merc or Fer.
        Paying lots of money for a subpar product and continually fighting high promises that never seems to materialize.

      2. I don’t think red bull had much choice. Before renault bought their own team in f1 it looked more like renault was just going to leave. They did absolutely 0 engine development during the whole year in 2015 despite the engine having lots of issues (high fuel usage, low power) for example. Iirc they used the last tokens on some of the last races of the season. For red bull it looked like they could be running renault 2015 engines for many years to come if renault leaves as merc and ferrari would never sell engines to a competitor who could beat them on track. Renault deserved every bit of criticism from red bull.

  4. @keithcollantine Thanks for accepting my comment as The Comment of the Day. Wishing you and the others at Race Fans a happy Christmas.

    1. Yes, a Merry Christmas to all.

      As to cotd, I strongly disagree. Who says VB isn’t grateful? Isn’t aware of how much better he has had it in his career so far than many others did or will? As if he isn’t aware this wasn’t the end of the world. And as if he chose to drive over the debris.

      While getting a team order may be morale sapping, it is not like there is some scale of degrees of emotional for VB that he should have drawn from that would have prevented him from having a wave of emotion take over him once he was alone. According to him it didn’t last long either. But hey, I guess some people are just robots emotionally. Take everything VB has said as referenced in the main article the other day, describing how he felt, including circumstances from the previous two races that lead up to that race, and slam him to the weeds for being human anyway. Too much.

      1. I agree… and Happy New Years to all Fanatics as well.

        I don’t understand all the immature feelings for BOT etc… If you join a team as a probable No.2 then that’s what you are, and are likely to be asked to move over at times. It has always been like this (except fore that ‘silly season’…), and presumably always will be. If the newer driver dramatically out-performs the ‘No.1’ he gets to keep his positions (maybe… ;-). BOT did not achieve this and therefore must expect the request. Sure he won’t be happy, but he will need to ‘man up’.
        Whether or not RIC is going to Renault as ‘unofficial’ No.2 or not won’t matter, if he out-performs HUL he gets the support he deserves… It just depends on whether Renault can themselves make the championship grade.

  5. Steiner could very well be right. That could indeed be the case next season or at least at the beginning. We shall wait and see.

    Renault’s go at RBR once more, LOL.

    I agree with the COTD in principle although I think that losing a race win due to something out of one’s control is worse than losing it via team orders.

    The look of the Christmas light-fitted W09, though.

  6. I wouldn’t read too much into Steiner’s comments. He’s covering his back because the Haas won’t be able to easily translate this year’s Ferrari aero philosophy to 2019 and they will probably be propping up the grid.

    Look at their performance in 2017 for an example of this.

  7. Mark in Florida
    24th December 2018, 16:50

    I thought Dallara built the chassis from a Haas design drawing? I guess Haas gets Ferraris old designs just like Torro Rosso does from Red Bull. Not…come on stop rehashing that b.s. You need to worry more about Sauber. Sauber is the Ferrari B team since Steiner won’t do what Ferrari wants all the time. Steiner is probably correct the big money teams will pull away in the development wars. They can afford to have a separate group to start on next year’s car early. It’s a consequence of having a lot of money and resources. Small teams will never be able to compete with the big boys it’s not realistic to think otherwise. If F1 was set up like Indy it would be possible but then it wouldn’t be F1 would it? Merry Christmas everyone.

    1. come on stop rehashing that

      I’ve found that people are quite dogmatic on this point, and no amount of conversation is likely to sway their opinion (or convince me of the reverse, beyond these TV viewers seeing apparent similarities between the respective chassis). I’ve decided to stop trying!

      Agree that Steiner doesn’t toe the Ferrari line like a B-team, and that 2018 has clearly shown that it is Sauber who is the B-team. Not quite at the Toro Rosso level, but not too far away either (and way ahead of Renault/McLaren, who each think the other is their B-team).

      And a Merry Christmas to you too! Unlikely to be a White Christmas there, though, I’d think?

      1. Mark in Florida
        25th December 2018, 16:11

        @phylyp No white Christmas here. It was about 50 degrees Fahrenheit this morning and will hit 75 this afternoon. You guys have a great day with your family. Can’t wait for the race season to start up again for all the series.

  8. So I think in the beginning the gap should be bigger between the big ones and the smaller ones because there’s just so many more resources to get there.

    Simply, simply, lovely.

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