Lando Norris, McLaren, Yas Marina

F2 to F1 will be the biggest jump of all – Norris

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In the round-up: Lando Norris says the jump from Formula 2 to Formula 1 is by far the biggest change he’s had to cope with so far.

What they say

Despite having risen quickly through the junior motorsport ranks, Norris said moving into F1 is the biggest step he’s taken yet:

I guess the biggest challenge is everything being new. I think although every season I’ve taken a step up into the next category and I’ve only done one year in everything, there’s a lot more stuff to think of, to overcome. New tracks, new cars.

You’re developing the car and the team a lot more throughout the season than you do in Formula Two, Formula Three. There we have a fixed car, [here] you’re constantly working on areas you’re lacking. And you never stop pushing, even more so than in Formula Two and Formula Three.

But at the same time going up against drivers who haven’t had years of experience, it’s a big change again to what I’m used to [which is] racing drivers who I’ve been racing all my career. Even from karting all the way to Formula 2 now. And going up against drivers who’ve been in it for 10 years, five years more or less, it’s quite different because they know all the tracks a lot more. I haven’t been to all the race circuits.

Quotes: Dieter Rencken

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Michael Schumacher Museum, 2019
Michael Schumacher exhibition, Ferrari Museum, 2019

The Ferrari Museum opened a special ‘Michael 50’ exhibition to mark Michael Schumacher’s 50th birthday yesterday.

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Comment of the day

Is it time to reappraise Schumacher’s Mercedes F1 career?

Comparisons between drivers are always sketchy, but Nico Rosberg came to Mercedes as a slightly unknown quantity, someone who was probably better than Nakajima and about Webber’s level. That Schumacher couldn’t beat him immediately meant to most that his comeback was a failure. I sometimes wonder if we should view Schumacher’s comeback in a different light following recent years.

Hamilton is regarded as one of (if not, the) best of his generation and Rosberg held his own against him for four seasons, culminating in his championship in 2016. Does knowing how good Rosberg really is/was show Schumacher’s 2010-2012 as slightly better than they were interpreted at the time? Personally, I think so.

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On this day in F1

  • Born on this day in 1989: Future IndyCar race-winner Graham Rahal

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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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27 comments on “F2 to F1 will be the biggest jump of all – Norris”

  1. limiting teams use of tyres in practice is all well and good until you go into a race and discover one of the race compounds either doesn’t work or is unsafe in some way. imagine the 2005 usgp without practice. yes we would have got a full starting grid but if the tyres were as unsafe as michelin believed then how many big accidents would there have been?

    i also question how much of the usgp last year been good was down to a lack of running on friday as that circuit has always tended to produce good racing regardless of how much or little practice running they got. and much of what made the race good this time was red bull’s making there way through the field due to grid penalties.

    just yet more artificial meddling that will do nothing but add more silly regulations to an already over-regulated sport.

    1. I couldn’t agree more.

      In addition, as a paying punter, we want to see cars on the track on Fridays and Saturdays. If they take away one of the reasons for practice sessions, a lot of teams will do absolutely minimal running (probably none at all in FP1) to reduce engine wear.

      And we thought Bernie came up with crazy ideas!

    2. @RogerA Red Bull didn’t take grid penalties except for an unscheduled gearbox change for Max, though, which was ‘forced’ rather than a tactical one due to the damage it sustained from the impact on the kerbing in Q2.

      1. Was the kerbing not in Q1? He did not appeared in Q2 as i recall.

    3. We have not had such situation ever in f1 except once (the US gp). It is extremely unlikely it would happen again.

      1. If that had happened with big crashes on the penultimate corner US fans amongst other casual fans would have loved it and the US grand prix would have ran without interuption until now.

  2. Re CoTD

    There was article in Autosport a few years that pretty much talked about the same thing. This is why driver it is very hard to fairly compare drivers, simply because there are so many variables.

    Essentially, the article concluded that Schumacher was just as good, but the point was that the standards in F1 had simply been raised, largely thanks to Michael himself. When he was winning everything in sight, Michael was the benchmark that the next generation of drivers (i.e. Alonso, Button, Kimi etc) aspired to equal, and they did. Over the 3 year break, the F1 grid just moved up a gear.

    1. @jaymenon I don’t think he was quite the same driver he was before his first retirement. I believe Rosberg himself, and several others have mentioned that Schumacher had some his consistency, but his peak performances were still as good as ever. The difference now was that his peak performances didn’t mean he was head and shoulders above everyone on the entire grid, as used to be the case. I think the fact that he didn’t have the Bridgestone tyres with which he basically dominated F1, and the testing ban meant he suffered more than most.

      The current F1 grid is far superior to the ones Schumacher used to race, especially in the 1990s, that is true. I would have loved to see prime Schumacher battling against the likes of Alonso, Vettel and Hamilton in their primes. I know that Schumacher did go up against Alonso, but that was still a fairly young and raw version of him, and he has no doubt improved since. Not to mention Verstappen as well, as Schumacher vs. Max fights would be legendary, as neither give an inch. Schumacher was the best in his era, no doubt about that. It would be interesting to see if that would this be the case in the 2010s

      1. @mashiat, it certainly does seem to be the case that the restrictions on testing were more of a problem for him, as he was more used to testing a car in real life rather than relying on a “driver in the loop” simulator. I believe that, being unused to practising with a simulator, he found it quite difficult to use a simulator instead as he tended to suffer from motion sickness.

        1. Schumi was never a raw speed talent, his speed was built up through hard, hard work. He (and Ferrari) would test 3000 kilometers for a 300Km race.
          So the testing ban brought him down to his “natural” level, among the best in history no doubt, but not a wizard

          1. Strange remark. He was one of the best qualifiers and always found time where others could not.

    2. I’ve maintained for years that as much as I dislike his personality, Rosberg is one of the most under-rated drivers on the grid. He was ridiculously fast over one lap, he could race the team strategy with extraordinary precision, and he could learn from his engineers better than most. He didn’t react to changing situations very well, though, so as soon as the race went off-script, he didn’t fare as well.

      I really believe if he’d had anyone besides Hamilton as a teammate, we’d be talking about Rosberg as at least a 3 time world champion.

      I think Schumacher suffered from two problems when he came back– he couldn’t practice as much as he could at Ferrari, and he didn’t have anything left to prove– somewhat like Hamilton not winning the races after he’d won a championship (until 2018, when I think he decided to prove he could).

      1. That Monaco pole lap in the Mercedes though. Bit of a mic drop moment with hindsight.

        1. @asanator I don’t think it was a mic-drop moment necessarily. The Mercedes was arguably the quickest car on the day, and he beat his teammate by 0.147s, which should be lauded, but certainly not a mic-drop moment. I believe there were far more impressive performances that maybe went under the radar.

    3. I think schumi was just past his peak. He also had a young and hungry team mate who was willing to sacrifice everything for f1 whereas schumi had already had a taste of freedom outside of f1 and its relentless travelling and work focus. I could be wrong but already in 2006 when michael had his last season at ferrari he started to phase out. 2006 was also the first year of the v8 engines. Compared to v10s the v8s had less torque and less power while also being more peaker. This might have been one reason why schumi did not do well. Schumi was known for his ability to drive difficult cars very quickly and precisely and the v8s probably were more forgiving so it allowed other drivers to get closer and surpass schumi. The v10s on grooved tires were pure animals to drive and even the best drivers had doubts after the first tests of the season whether they still had it.

      When it comes to tires the brand of the tire is not the key thing. They key thing is that schumi drove most of his f1 career when the cars had grooved slicks. When schumi left after 2006 the cars still had grooved slicks but when he came back in 2010 the cars had slick tires. And had them for one year. With the limited testing it was probably difficult for schumi to get back in it.

  3. Re “Banning free tyre use on Fridays tabled by F1”
    It seems this idea started with Kimi winning the US Grand Prix, but Kimi was driving a Ferrari, one of the best cars on the grid. While it is easy to think that lack of practice made the race better and less predictable, in fact lack of practice produced an entirely predictable result: The podium places went to the most well funded teams.
    I don’t see why mandating what tyre teams can use in final practice won’t just make it more difficult for the less well funded teams to produce a good result.

    1. I don’t think we rated Austin because Kimi won or who was on the podium. @drycrust
      What I liked about that race was the real racing going on between various drivers, not in part due to many drivers struggling with controlling their car. Once more it seemed like real racing rather than the top teams driving ‘like on rails’.

    2. I think Austin was good because different strategies resulted in 3 cars finishing the race (and it felt like a long race) pretty much on top of each other. the tyre differential or DRS effect was not so great that kimi could be easily passed so it made for a tight finish.

      however, it’s going to be very difficult to engineer these kind of situations happening more frequently – the best solution is that there are more cars racing close to one another, something which was vastly improved this year with the competitiveness of red bull. the big gap to F1.5 (a term I dislike!) is a problem because these cars are so slow that it quickly allows a pit window to open up, thus making strategy easier for the leading car.

      a bigger pool of competitive teams would solve many of the sport’s problems.

  4. Mr. Brawn: Again, you have an idea which will favor the big teams with the resources to simulate the race conditions, and will punish the smaller teams that lack the necessary resources.

    1. Right. Brawn only cares about one thing and that is his wallet. I wish this colossal cheat would have got the boot like Flav.

  5. This Norris kid is going to be a bust in F1. There has been too much talk about him with very little show for it.

    1. Even if he is reasonably good, it is a bit of an open question how the 2019 McLaren will fare, and whether it will be an adequate platform to showcase himself.

  6. MaliceCooper
    4th January 2019, 7:49

    Don’t worry Lando. After a while you’ll get used to the huge step in speed, handling and reliability that comes with driving a McLaren… The disappointment will turn to bitterness. The bitterness to rage. The rage to sad acceptance. Then you will have reached the zen-like state of FerLando!

  7. The suggestion of banning free tyre use in free practice sessions at first mightn’t sound too bad, but in the long-term, I think it wouldn’t really be a wise thing to do as that could become a potential safety issue as RogerA points out above. Yes, the US GP was decently exciting from the quality of racing-POV, not only last season’s race but also in 2015 (when practice running was also limited due to weather conditions), as well as, in Sochi the same season, but not all of the ‘exciting’ races over the years have featured a lack of running in the practice sessions of the event, so it’s more coincidental than anything else.

    That’s an interesting POV by the COTD. In hindsight, I think Schumi should’ve have made that comeback, but instead give that drive to someone who had/has more to give long-term, and the fact, Nico out-scored him in all of the three seasons they were teammates, but yes, I can also agree to an extent with the second paragraph of the COTD.

    Charles Bradley’s tweet, though.

  8. Can we PLEASE stop with all the Alonso non stories? PLEASE?

    Dude quit.

  9. I guess Norris doesn’t realize he’s taking another step in F1.5 before he gets to F1.

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