Romain Grosjean, Haas livery launch, Royal Automobile Club, 2019

Grosjean aims to avoid repeat of last year’s “rough patch”

RaceFans Round-up

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In the round-up: Romain Grosjean says he wants to build on the progress he made in the second half of last season following a “rough patch” at the start of the year.

What they say

Well you never know but definitely I want to keep the momentum from the second part of the season, I don’t want to get back to the rough patch I was going through.

In your life sometimes things are a bit more complicated and then they come back to where you would like them to be. So I’m working on making sure of that here, not going through that rough patch again, so we’ll see. I hope it’s a clear, good season and that’s probably what I need after last year.

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Comment of the day

Kevin Magnussen is right to describe the extent of fuel and tyre saving in F1 as “ridiculous” says @Robbie:

It has been ridiculous and needs to stop. The pinnacle of F1 should not be the pinnacle of tyre monitoring. If they’re going to drive eight seconds a lap slower, they might as well lose the wings altogether and then we won’t have to worry about processional cars handcuffed in dirty air.

Things should improve a little this year, then maybe a little more next year, then big time for 2021. Going in the right direction.

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On this day in F1

  • 25 years ago today Jean Alesi drove Ferrari’s new 412 for the first time

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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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  • 68 comments on “Grosjean aims to avoid repeat of last year’s “rough patch””

    1. “I think probably the lesson that I’ve learned is that actually it’s not as easy as just changing your engine, your drivers and bringing in a title partner. There’s a lot more work that needs to be done in order to make sure that an F1 team is set up in a way that it needs to in order to operate as efficiently and effectively as it needs to.”

      I agree with Claire.

      As much as I like to give Williams and McLaren stick through my snarky comments, I think success in F1 is hard business.

      Some weeks ago, I was reading a review of one of McLaren’s recently launched sports cars, and the reviewers came away very impressed at its handling and performance, on track and on the road. If a company who is that good at making cars struggles in F1, it probably just illustrates the various factors and variables that need to align perfectly for success in F1.

      From a position of failure to work ones way into success will require a tremendous amount of time, money and hard work (and luck, that regulation changes go your way without tying your hands), once success is achieved, retaining it requires probably as much of those. And those hard-won benefits can be frittered away very easily with a few missteps.

      I’d have to salute Williams and McLaren for soldiering own through their failures, and hope for an F1 field that just has front-runners and a tight midfield, with no backmarkers.

      1. @phylyp: No backmarkers? You don’t have to show the blue flags, Charlie – lapping is just another word for overtake. ;-)

          1. @jimmi-cynic
            Nice, if Charlie doesn’t have to bust his butt with blue flags he can get on with Race Control.
            Its a crappy job, but I would do it for the pay :)

      2. @phylyp I feel that testing restrictions play a big role in the difficulty to get it right in F1. With its budget and endless testing allowed McLaren could greatly improve.

        1. @spoutnik – Very true, that’s a good point.

          Personally, I’m a big fan of testing restrictions, because it forces teams to get their theory & design right. I’m a big advocate of that professionally and personally myself, which is probably why I support that restriction.

          1. @phylyp Indeed! I also like that! It’s a bit like a film camera where you have to think before taking a picture and not shooting thousands of numeric pictures. Same thing for film editing on 16mm. I did this and you better think before because when it’s cut, it’s cut!

    2. “Charles Leclerc sat in the Scuderia Ferrari Mission Winnow car “

      Keith, please promise us that in the RF articles, you will refer to it as a “Ferrari”, and not that abomination of a name (outside of verbatim quotes like this, obviously). I’ve just put RPFI behind me, and can’t take another four-part name.

      If they’re going to drive eight seconds a lap slower, they might as well lose the wings altogether and then we won’t have to worry about processional cars handcuffed in dirty air.

      @robbie – very nice point in the CotD!

      1. @phylyp seconded. Or we need to write a plugin to shorten that text.

      2. @phylyp to be fair to @keithcollantine the excerpt is taken from Ferrari website and not redacted, which is the right approach for the recap section.

        1. Hence my comment “outside of verbatim quotes like this, obviously”
          @m-bagattini :-)

    3. Left-foot braking was new to Formula One in 1994, but Schumacher was quick to adapt and telemetry traces from later in his career showed how he used his right foot to maintain 10-15 per cent throttle even while braking with his left foot. This method kept the car stable and allowed the aerodynamics to work more efficiently.

      Interesting, I thought pedal crossover was more a rallying technique, and that race engineers specifically told off F1 drivers who were doing it (IIRC it was because of fuel being burnt that was just being lost to braking).

      1. In rallying the technique is used to tie down the car while keeping the boost built up. So when you go over a crest you can keep the car more stable, keep your foot planted on the floor and not lose any boost when you come down while also not have the nose come up. This can also be used to stabilize the car because when you have both brakes and engine fighting against each others the diffs also lock more which basically makes the car want to understeer more. A traction control and stability control of sorts.

        In f1 trailing the throttle into corners helps managing engine braking. With bigger engines, 3 liter and 3.5 liter engines you need to add some throttle or you may over rotate the car on turn in as your rears start to slip. Especially if you downshift hard and early as you can do in such situation if you brake with your left foot. This is different from blipping the throttle when downshifting to match the rpms. In early 2000s all the way until the hybrids this additional throttle input was done by the computer (and later regulated) and with the blown diffusers this was also very important. With schumacher’s car the aerodynamic effect comes from the more stable platform and from the exhaust blown diffuser as the exhaust are under the car although that probably does help massively in that ar. As ground effects are extremely sensitive to ground height and rake giving little bit of throttle gives you more stable car to drive but also allows the aerodynamics work on the floor more consistently.

        1. @socksolid – thank you for that explanation!

    4. In response to the COTD: Fuel-saving will remain in F1 to some extent at least as long as the rules permit the so-called under-fuelling. Even during the refuelling era, there was fuel saving to some extent occasionally as well most notably with Felipe Massa in Spain in 2009, i.e., even that sixteen-season period wasn’t entirely free of fuel saving 100% of the time. Furthermore, in-race refuelling was detrimental to on-track overtaking.

      ”Left-foot braking was new to Formula One in 1994”
      – I wasn’t aware of that until today. I thought left-foot braking had always been a norm in Motorsport in general, not just for the last quarter-century.

      1. Generally the term left foot braking means the technique where you never brake with the right foot (in a car with automatic or sequental gearbox). But of course braking with your left foot was a part of the technique that was also used in older cars but it was very specific technique. There is a video of walter röhl driving the group b audi and dancing the pedals. The problem with the technique is that you can get into very weird transitions with the feet on the pedals when you need to use the clutch but don’t want to get off the brakes while you are already braking with your left foot. In some cars the steering column is in the way so you can’t left foot brake.

        1. And on the other extreme you have juha kankkunen who much more rarely does any of that complex stuff with the pedals:

      2. @keithcollantine Thank you for the cotd pick.

        @jerejj No question fuel saving is not new…far from it, but as KM points out, and as is the truth, it has never been so extreme, and combined with the extreme tire saving and component saving doesn’t seem to fit in what is supposed to be the pinnacle of racing.

        The weird thing is one should instinctively think that if one has to drive 8 seconds slower just to conserve fuel and tires, it would at least be worth the pit stop for tires, yet due to the fear of losing position and the difficulty of trailing cars and being in dirty air, even that doesn’t happen. At least in some circumstances. As I said, better days ahead. They’re tweaking it.

        1. Btw @keithcollantine I got a kick out of you changing my ‘tires’ to ‘tyres.’ I have known for all my life of your spelling for it on your side of the pond, but as a Canadian somehow just can’t bring myself to spell it that way even though the vast majority on this site do use the y instead of the i. I guess similarly you couldn’t bring yourself to leave the i alone, lol;) Great stuff.

          1. @robbie I wonder if it made him tired?

            1. @aapje Nyuk, nyuk!!!

      3. @jerejj, within the world of F1 and single seaters, the relatively constrained cockpits and the frequent need for the left foot to have to operate the clutch meant that it wasn’t very commonly used until the early 1990s, when semi-automatic transmissions became more commonplace. It was especially uncommon for single seater drivers to use it in the way that Schumacher used it since, as noted in the article and in the book that it references, Schumacher tended to blend the way in which he was applying the throttle and the brakes.

        In some senses, it’s perhaps appropriate for socksolid to bring up figures like Walter Röhrl given that the technique Schumacher was using was perhaps more similar in some ways to how rally drivers might have driven, rather than the way that most single seater drivers of that era would have learned to drive their cars at the time.

        In the case of figures like Walter Röhrl, that was being driven in part by a desire to keep the turbochargers spooled up and therefore minimise turbo lag. Similarly, it is possible that some Group C sportscar drivers in that era might have learned to use a similar technique, as some of the turbocharged engines in use in sportscar racing did suffer from some turbo lag.

        The Mercedes-Benz M119 series engine which was used in the Sauber C11 did have a noticeable amount of turbo lag, especially in the earlier models – I believe Mercedes indicated that it could take up to a second for the turbochargers to get up to full boost. Having driven the Sauber C11 at the start of his career, it is possible that Schumacher might have learned to use left foot braking whilst driving that car as a way of dealing with turbo lag, and he might then have carried that on when he transitioned from sportscar racing to F1.

        1. ANON, @jerejj, I think Schumacher probably developed his left foot braking in go-karts (no clutch), I have been left foot braking since the 1970’s when I was a part time taxi driver (auto-trans) in stop-start city traffic.

        2. Using the brakes to slow down the car while bringing up the boost doesn’t work in rear wheel driven prototype cars because when you brake and press the accelerator at the same time the front tires only get the brakes whereas the rears get brakes and engine torque. Which means your fronts are locking up whereas the rears are pretty much neutral as the engine basically counteracts the brakes. Doing that in group c cars would cause terminal understeer and most likely flatspot your front tires. In four wheel driven cars that technique does work but not in rear wheel drive cars. Also my post was purely about the foot techniques. For actual reasons why to do it I wrote other posts couple of posts above…

    5. Canadian flag flying outside Racing Point HQ; are they Canadian registered now? Should they win a race, will we hear the Canadian anthem after the Mexican one!?

      1. after the Mexican one

        I see what you did there ;)

      2. after the Mexican one

        @travis-daye – cheeky!

        1. On Feb 13 they’ll be presenting their 2019 car here in Toronto at the Canadian International Auto Show.

    6. does anyone else think the ‘Winnow’ slogan that ferrari/malboro keep repeating is absolutely ridiculous. ‘Winnowing’ is a word for separating grains of wheat – it just makes me think of farming. are marketing people that dense that they don’t even google the stupid word they’ve just “made up”?

      still, it could be worse. It reminds me of a new brand of chocolate that cadbury’s were developing. I forget what name they came up with but in russian it means vagina (russia was one of the intended markets).

      1. @frood19 it is ridiculous, the whole Winnow thing. But the point could be another: sneak a Marlboro-like logo and advertise in plain sight a tobacco brand. If that’s the case, they made a brilliant stunt.

        1. @m-bagattini oh of course, that’s what they are doing. the whole barcode thing was pretty much as blatant. but surely they could have found another slogan was NN in the middle of it and it would have subbed as the marlboro logo just as well. why a word about farming??

          the absurdity of a tobacco company sponsoring a sports team in the age of a ban on tobacco advertising is another matter.

        2. Oh I see it now, the MW arrow logo is like an “M” on top of a mirror, very clever.
          Anyways, Ferrari aren’t the only ones to subliminally invoke another brand. McLaren now gives me a hankering for tasty chocolate (Freddos). And I can’t see Haas without thinking of a premium energy drink (Red Bull).

      2. Whenever I see ‘Mission Winnow’ it reads to me like ‘Mission Minnow’.
        And whilst it might get some other people to smoke a certain brand, to me it diminishes the Ferrari brand due to something small and insignificant.

          1. @ahxshades – interestingly, only now did I notice the right-pointing arrow in the first letters of Mission and Winnow.

        1. @coldfly yes, I think I saw Minnow the first time I saw it. however, I think i’m coming to the conclusion that the slogan itself is almost completely unimportant – the purpose is entirely to subliminally/subconsciously get the marlboro logo onto TV screens. the fact that @phylyp and others didn’t initially see it shows that it worked. and surely that is illegal! it’s good to see that some people are investigating it (thanks for the link @ahxshades).

          mass marketing (or mass persuasion) is literally running the world at the moment, so anything to curb its influence is to be welcomed. especially if marketing cigarettes is the aim.

        2. @coldfly, yes, although I think of it as “Wishin’ Minnow” which would work for a new low budget team.

      3. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
        8th February 2019, 12:34

        I don’t get the whole Mission Winnow thing. First, who’s paying for that sponsorship? Obviously Ferrari isn’t doing it for free.

        Second, what’s the purpose of the logo. We know what Santander stood for – we know what Red Bull stands for. This is such a stupid move by Ferrari.

        If Ferrari thinks they can fool everyone with a big sign on their car, I think the FIA should take the car apart. They’ll make tons of money from the rule violations.

      4. @frood19 – I would say that they (Marlboro) know exactly what they are doing and the purpose of that ungainly name is two-fold. First, as @m-bagattini points out (and you acknowledged) it is about keeping the Marlboro logo on the car. Having the M and W works well for that.

        Second, it is my conjecture that this is about Marlboro’s parent company moving into the vape market. The word winnow has more than one definition and one removed from the wheat-based definition is more simply “to get rid of (something undesirable or unwanted).” How this applies is that vaping supposedly gets rid of much of what is unwanted (tar, various chemical compounds from burning tobacco) presumably by all, but keeps what is wanted by the company (the addictive nicotine).

        As nefarious and objectionable as some may find it (myself included) it is a rather sly way of advertising themselves in areas where other competitors have been removed. It is unfortunate that Ferrari chooses to continue to take Marlboro’s money, given what the latter company’s product does to people, but not surprising.

        1. Forgot to mention, the reason I think the vaping connection is relevant is because Marlboro’s parent company Altria invested $12.8 billion in the vape market.

        2. @hobo that’s an interesting idea, but it’s a bit of a stretch in my opinion. these slogans are not crossword puzzles to solve and ‘winnow’ is hardly in common usage. others have pointed out that they saw ‘window’ or ‘minnow’ anyway. the connection between winnowing wheat and reducing the harmful products of tobacco is fleeting at best.

          the vaping thing is interesting (to me anyway) because it is provably less harmful than smoking and indeed has been promoted as a smoking cessation device. but it is still illegal to advertise it, just like tobacco. i have little doubt that the big fag companies will make billions out of vaping and although it’s not as harmful as smoking, it’s still not good for you and it is highly, highly addictive. my friend was a regular smoker, around a packet per day, before he moved on to vaping (good for his lungs), but he now vapes more or less continuously and hence his nicotine dependency is way higher (bad for his brain, especially when his vaping device breaks down or runs out of juice).

          you’re right to say the relationship tarnishes ferrari (and the sport as a whole) by association.

          1. @frood19 – Except the word winnow is not just about wheat. I’m not sure why you are stuck on that specific definition of the word. I never hear the word in that context and when I do hear it it is in the more generic manner which I included above. Reduce unwanted things is exactly what they are trying to sell via vaping vs smoking. And they get the added benefit of having their tobacco brand imagery still on the car. Win-win, for them.

            And advertising is all about subliminal messaging. You think a kid just deciphered the bar code on the Ferraris of the past and wanted to smoke? No. But smokers saw it. My guess is that this is more about appearances. They appear as though they care about customers and want them to be healthier, when all they really want is for them to switch to the other product they sell which is just as addictive.

            Also, there is nothing “provably less harmful” about vaping. Vape devices release toxic metals into the vapor (lead, nickel, chromium, and manganese) as well as other chemicals (acrylonitrile, acrolein, propylene oxide, acrylamide and crotonaldehyde). Tobacco companies long said that their products didn’t harm anyone. So forgive me for not believing that this new fad is any less damaging, especially when long-term studies have not been carried out nor have short-term studies said anything of the sort.

            1. Pretty sure the current consensus is that vapour/ecigs are still harmful, despite the lack of longitudinal data. And who would want to smoke them and wait for the long term research to confirm this?

            2. @hobo yes, i take your point that i’m hung up on the wheat definition. but even in the other usage, it’s hardly a widely used word so I think it’s highly unlikely they’re going for that angle (are there even any marlboro branded vaping devices??).

              the subliminal aspect is a given (I alluded to it in other comments).

              on vaping, of course it’s not harmless but I think the evidence suggests it is less harmful than tobacco. perhaps provably is a strong word, but the scientific consensus supports my assertion. the public health england review was fairly comprehensive and there are numerous smaller studies which show the harms of vaping are much smaller than smoking. the WHO review highlighted a potentially dangerous variability in e-cigarette products (i.e. it’s poorly regulated) but also showed that some products were certainly less harmful than tobacco. as I mentioned in my previous post, there are concerns about the potential for increased nicotine exposure, and this will be addressed in longer term studies.

              you seem to be suggesting that it is only tobacco companies that are saying vaping is less harmful – this is false (see ongoing NIHR funded trials and other non-tobacco funded trials). you make it sound like smokers are jumping out of the frying pan and into the fire, which is not supported by the evidence.

              it is clearly not a fad – as you said, the big players are investing billions into vaping (for good or bad). and there is abundant evidence that it works as a tobacco smoking cessation method – as someone who works in health policy research (and I am necessarily critical and sceptical of most new health tech), this is a big step forward.

            3. @frood19 So you doubt that Marlboro is going after the vape market with this Ferrari branding? Well then this is a huge coincidence, isn’t it?

              “It gives us a truly global platform with which to drive greater resonance of our potentially reduced risk products, including our Vype, Vuse and glo brands. Ultimately, innovation and technology will support us in creating a better tomorrow’ for our consumers worldwide.”

              The only other F1 team currently connected to a tobacco brand is Ferrari, who is sponsored by Marlboro producers Philip Morris International.

              There doesn’t have to be a “Marlboro-branded vaping device” for this to be one of their goals. Marlboro’s parent company invested $12.5 billion (with a “b”) into a particular vape company. You think they are not going to market that? Direct tweet from their twitter feed here.

              PMI wants to stop selling cigarettes as soon as possible. It has invested over $4.7 [billion] to produce and scientifically assess smoke-free alternatives to give smokers who would otherwise continue to smoke a better option.

              I was not suggesting that only the tobacco companies are pro-vaping or saying that it is less harmful. What I am saying is that, especially for those tobacco companies who have moved into the vaping market, that they have a vested interest in selling it as less harmful.

              Further, what I said was that vaping may be less harmful in the smoke aspect. But that because many devices are putting harmful metals into the vapor as part of the heating process, that it may be just as bad but in different ways. Maybe it is better. We don’t know yet. It is one thing to tolerate it as much as smoking is tolerated (which is to say, very little in public spaces). It is a very different (and I think dangerous) thing to talk about it like its a great thing, advocate it as a safe alternative, only to find out in a few years that it isn’t.

              On top of that studies have shown that this has been marketed heavily at children. Get them hooked on the activity with flavors, introduce nicotine, and they are then hooked on vaping and more likely to become tobacco smokers.

    7. @frood19

      > why a word about farming

      Just a guess, but maybe they thought that not many people would have thought about that meaning. Also, they’re an international brand and as a non-native English speaker, I never heard of it before.
      Out of curiosity I just checked the dictionary and it says, as a second meaning, that “winnow”, verb, also means “to blow”.

      1. “winnow”, verb, also means “to blow”

        Ah, the penny drops. The opposite of “to suck” :-)

        1. @phylyp I wonder if you can “blow” a cigarette, in English. We know that “blow” is used for something else that it isn’t actually… blown, but quite the opposite. Or to make a more polite example, an alarm goes off when it starts making its sound.

          1. @m-bagattini – no no, I was making a joke about Ferrari’s mission being that they shouldn’t suck (as in, perform badly) :-), hence the opposite of suck = blow.

            We know that “blow” is used for something else that it isn’t actually… blown, but quite the opposite.

            Keith will be panicking at this being on a family-friendly site ;-)

            1. @phylyp I tried to be as clean as possible but it’s like walking on eggs :D! And now I get it, the “to suck” joke. Man, today I’m sooo slow.

            2. @phylyp but if you say something blows, then that’s bad too. perhaps it’s a bit 90s american, I’m bart simpson says it.

              at least winnowing has a positive outcome, haha.

            3. @frood19 – oh man, so Ferrari are in trouble either way. :-) Not a good time to be a Vettel fan!

              @m-bagattini – no worries, perils of the internet that things get lost in translation.

      2. @m-bagattini I guess that is the reason they used it (unless they were just lazy and never considered it). given that ‘mission’, ‘win’ and ‘now’ are all english words, you feel like they’re not really catering for an international audience!

        i wonder if they could have shoe-horned a marlboro logo into ‘Forza Ferrari’ but perhaps that’s asking too much.

        1. @frood19, The thought “Winnow” could be meant to be equated with “win” and “now” and not the processing of harvested crops sounds logical.
          I do wonder if “Mission Winnow” is somehow meant to be equated with Microsoft Windows (“windows” vs “winnow”), but I have no idea why Philip Morris would want people to think they’re somehow related to a desktop computer booting up.
          I’m sorry, but when you say “Mission Winnow” quickly it sounds more or less like “Mission Winnow”. If it is meant to sound like “Marlboro” then, I’m sorry, they didn’t do a good job.

          1. I think you’ve missed the point of advertising.

          2. Yeah it is an odd one but I think that if I were a Ferrari person trying to explain it I would say that to winnow is to separate the wheat from the chaff, or to blow away that which is unnecessary, and in that case for them as a team their mission is to get to the heart of their problems, get rid of the waste, and produce a winner. Odd but kind of cool and inventive, and certainly has raised a lot of discussion and attention, and personally I’m not all that bent out of shape if this is more of their Philip Morris subliminal sponsorship type stuff.

    8. That ‘mission winnow’ thing is truly terrible. It confuses me that someone that’s paid for marketing and advertising presumably came up with such a dreadful moniker. ‘Scuderia Ferrari Mission Winnow car’. Mission Win Now? Mission Window, Minnow? Miniwiniwow? Some sort of aliteration of Marlboro? It doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue well, nor does it really make a lot of sense. Really irritates me.

      1. Well 90 per cent of the comments are discussing that topic. Looks to me like it’s a win from a marketing perspectice ain’t it?

        1. I get the concept of no publicity being bad publicity but if people are universally deriding it, questioning it or outright mocking it, as a marketing tool I don’t think that’s a positive response.

    9. The left foot braking technique as an explanation for why Senna thought the Bennetton was using traction control doesn’t make sense to me.

      Braking occurs going into a corner, traction control is used coming out of a corner. If Senna was noting strange noises or abnormal acceleration when following Schumacher that made him believe TC was being used, it wouldn’t be in the braking zone but the acceleration zone.
      I don’t know whether they were cheating or not, but I don’t see how this puts the matter to bed.

      1. @jonw I’m with you. I don’t buy it either. For several reasons. Firstly, if that is all that was going on was some left foot braking, I would have thought they would just say so at the time. Seems to me all they did was, in their own defence, claim innocence rather than state that it was left-foot braking. They also admitted still having on board the TC software that had been made illegal, but claimed it was up to FIA to prove they were actually using it. The joke became that FIA went to Silicon Valley to find the best computer person they could to help them police for cheating, only to be told ‘too late, he already works for Benetton.’

        I would think that experts like Senna et al would have been able to pick up on left foot braking if that was what was happening. From what I recall one of the big clues became shots of the Benetton’s brakes glowing while exiting corners. I find it quite strange that after all this time this weak suggestion is being made about left foot braking, when at the same time there were several other illegalities going on with the team, namely the fuel valve debacle, and the illegally low ride height issue. Since they seemed to have several illegalities going on at once I would suggest MS was not just left foot braking. And if that was all it was, and it always resulted in glowing brakes while exiting corners, would that not have become a trademark of his once he got to Ferrari too? Perhaps even a technique that others would have taken on?

        Nope…not buying it either. Not whatsoever.

        1. Absolutely agree.

    10. Re: Schumacher & left foot braking: I knew from some magazine article a while ago that schumacher’s driving style was almost always partial throttle under braking, and that was one of keys to his speed (which directly affected chassis attitude/aero stability). So this theory of it sounding like traction control sounds totally plausible. Over the years driving in video games and in FSAE I used this technique, though you can’t use it in every braking scenario and sometimes it can actually hurt you. For example, focusing on maintaining throttle on slow, tight corners when it might be faster to do a full lift for better turn in and ramp up throttle to get a better corner exit.

      Just more reason why the man is legendary.

      1. @rpiian this is a good point. of course, using throttle and brake at the same time is something very familiar to most rally drivers. F1 drivers do it at high speeds even in order to maintain stability (ricciardo did it in 2014 at monza when he passed vettel with that amazing dummy – rather than lift off, so he could dip back into the slipstream and then pass on the inside, he rode the brake for a bit which allowed him to keep the throttle pinned and without affecting the stability of the car).

        However, the bit about aerodynamic stability in the article sounds like nonsense to me:

        Left-foot braking was new to Formula One in 1994, but Schumacher was quick to adapt and telemetry traces from later in his career showed how he used his right foot to maintain 10-15 per cent throttle even while braking with his left foot. This method kept the car stable and allowed the aerodynamics to work more efficiently.

        that implies the car is pitching forward massively under braking and that keeping a bit of throttle in would alleviate that. (a) the braking zones are really short, (b) F1 cars don’t pitch that much and (c) a small amount of drive from the rear tyres would not contend with the massive front loading under braking. I have read that schumacher used the brakes on the exit of corners, but that’s something else all together.

        1. @frood19, IIRC the purpose was to keep the rear wing working with the exhaust gas, at least that’s what I read at the time.

    11. IN relation to COTD, As I said yesterday….

      Fuel, Tyre & general car management has been a part of F1 since the very beginning & will continue to be part of F1 going forward regardless of what regulations are in place.

      It’s also not even as big an issue today compared to the past where there was a very realistic possibility you could run out of fuel at the end of a race if you didn’t save a lot of fuel & in a lot of races cars regularly did run dry either in the closing stages or on the slow down lap. And that doesn’t factor in the higher risk of mechanical failure if you pushed a car too hard in the past.

      That said I could do without the tyres been artificially created to degrade at a faster rate forcing extreme levels of tyre management but the general idea that tyre/fuel/car management is ‘Not F1’ I disagree with.

      1. @stefmeister I don’t disagree in general, and have always stated it, that some conservation of fuel and tires and cars has always been part of the game…of all racing series not just F1. However, it is the ridiculous extremes we (as in one of the very drivers, namely KM in this example) are talking about, all at once. You cite the past, and I can’t recall a lot of dnf’s due to running out of fuel, but I also can’t recall them running 8 seconds a lap slower than they could have. Another thing to keep in mind…if this was so ‘normal’ for F1, then we wouldn’t be seeing the movement for change ala the extra fuel they’ll be getting and the sturdier tires. Hopefully we’ve seen the worst of the need for extreme conservation of so many things at once, and can start this season to see a return to more normal and reasonable levels of conservation. If we are to call F1 the pinnacle of RACING, that is. Let’s put more of the racing back in the drivers hands rather than they be passengers monitoring everything as the engineers tell them what they have to do. Another glaring difference to the past, no? At least back then the driver had to feel out the situation and conserve accordingly.

        1. @robbie, I agree with you entirely but still recall Jack Brabham pushing his car over the line for a points (3rd ?) finish. If, as in the past, we had no fuel flow limiter we might again see drivers running out of fuel after a hard fight to gain position.

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