Start, Indianapolis, 2006

McLaren’s Brown wants third US F1 race at Indianapolis

RaceFans Round-up

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In the round-up: McLaren Racing CEO Zak Brown wants Indianapolis Motor Speedway to join Austin and Miami as a third American round of the world championship.

In brief

Martins on top in F3 test

Formula Renault Eurocup champion Victor Martins ended this week’s Formula 3 test with the quickest time. The MP Motorsport driver set a 1’31.636 around the Circuit de Catalunya, where the championship will begin next month. Alexander Smolyar with second for ART, a tenth of a second behind Martins.

Another Formula E team commits to ‘Gen3’

The 333 team has confirmed it will continue to compete in Formula E when its third generation, ‘Gen3’ car is introduced in 2023. Mahindra, DS, Nissan and Porsche have previously confirmed their commitment to the new formula, while BMW and Audi are to leave the series prior to its introduction.

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Comment of the day

Consider your words marked, @GeeMac

I think a few people are in for a shock later this year as I fully believe Mercedes will extend Bottas’ contract for 2022. They keep on emphasising how important the team dynamic is to them and how much they value people focussing on the team and brand above all else, particularly their own result. The Rosberg/Hamilton era scars are still raw.

Bottas is quick enough and is a solid team man, he fits the bill perfectly. Russell is probably quicker, but he is also more selfish, in more of a hurry and is probably more willing to put himself in a position where improving his result is prioritised over improving the team result. His confidence/arrogance (depending on how you take him) is getting clearer by the day with each interview he gives and was plain for all to see last Sunday.

Mark my words – Russell won’t be in a Williams next season, but he won’t be in the W13 either.
@GeeMac

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On this day in F1

Michael Schumacher, Fernando Alonso. Imola, 2006
Schumacher kept Alonso behind to win at Imola today in 2006 – the positions were reversed 12 months earlier
  • 15 years ago today Michael Schumacher resisted pressure from Fernando Alonso to win the San Marino Grand Prix

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  • 56 comments on “McLaren’s Brown wants third US F1 race at Indianapolis”

    1. Yes (@come-on-kubica)
      23rd April 2021, 0:31

      We don’t need more races in USA. I’m fed up of this american focus for no gain.

      COTD – Interesting theory but if perez outscored bottas it’s curtains for him. In fact, Bottas has been appalling for a half a season now so we will wait and see.

      1. yes, BUT, i WOULD be totally onboard with F1 entering the Indy 500. And no, i don’t buy that you can’t run F1 cars on an Oval. Of course you can.

        1. Why would F1 cars be run as part of Indy 500? There’s such a disparity in performance, even Mazepin would lap the Indy field!

          1. So what? Plenty of Multi-class racing events. It would be freaking epic, that’s why. Also, the Indy 500 used to count towards the WDC, so it wouldn’t even upset traditionalists too much

            1. someone or something
              23rd April 2021, 13:05

              @mrboerns

              Also, the Indy 500 used to count towards the WDC, so it wouldn’t even upset traditionalists too much

              Of course it would. The Indy 500 and F1 were like oil and water, they just would not mix. With just three exceptions (Ascari in 1952, Fangio and Troy Ruttman in 1958), drivers who took part in the Indy 500 and drivers who took part in any other race of the F1 World Championship were in complementary distribution – they were either in the former or the latter group, never in both. There was probably more overlap between tractor racing and either of these series …
              Bottom line: It was just an oddity, a sort of running gag that kept being repeated for a full decade in the hopes that someone would eventually laugh. But no one did.

            2. It was included, but only really for symbolic reasons – those in the Indy 500 never seriously though of competing for the WDC, and similarly few in F1 entered the Indy 500 as the costs and difficulty of producing a completely different car meant it wasn’t worth bothering.

    2. Saw that CotD, wouldn’t surprise me. Ocon, Vandoorne, Wehrlein, the list of Mercedes young guns chucked in an underperforming team to just get thrown out is embarassing. What’s one more?

      Makes Red Bull look generous.

      1. @skipgamer wasn’t Vandoorne part of McLaren’s junior programme, not Mercedes?

      2. @skipgamer Anon already replied, but Vandoorne came to F1 with Mclaren, so he doesn’t belong in the mix.

      3. It’s not just a race in the US but also a race that occurs in daytime in the western hemisphere and late afternoon to late evening in Europe. Also encourages more American/Canadian firms to be involved as sponsors of teams and advertising on TV coverage.

        F-1 TV Audience “”We did it safely and brought excitement and new races to our fans around the world. The audience figures for 2020 show the strength and resilience of our sport, with average audience figures in 2020 at 87.4 million””

        Reply moderated
    3. There’s something right about Team 333 signing up to Gen 3 for 2023!

    4. Chris Horton
      23rd April 2021, 1:09

      We do not need or want 3 races in the USA. Thanks.

      Reply moderated
      1. Who are you referring to?

        1. someone or something
          23rd April 2021, 12:45

          Pretty much the vast majority of F1 fans, I’d wager.

      2. Who’s we?

        I definetly want more races in the US. Would people be whining if someone announced yet another European race? This is a world championship, not an european league.

        Reply moderated
      3. I’m fine with there being 2 because the US is quite a big country, but 3 seems a little greedy. If it comes at the expense of better races in other countries.

        Istanbul Park and Sepang need to be on the calendar.

    5. I hope there are 2 races in USA but also that F1 can rotate it around multiple tracks (Indianapolis, Texas, Miami, others). USA as a country has a lot of interest in racing and it is just unfortunate that F1 isn’t part of it.

      But please make the Indy race an oval race. We got an absolute cracker in Bahrain when we went on the almost oval short circuit. Why not have a full oval in Indy! Infact, lets go a step further and allow all teams a special extra engine just for this race and let them go bananas!! (Provided of course the safety of drivers and spectators is guaranteed).

      1. I’m afraid ovals won’t work in F1.

        1. Why not? F1 ran on Monza’s banked ovals in the 70s. Sakhir GP circuit was an almost oval.

          Don’t use the ‘F1 DNA’ card please. By that logic, F1 should never leave Europe. That view is an anachronism in today’s time. The F1 DNA is meant to evolve with time and hence going to different geographies, changing regulations, and trying out different types of circuits is part of this evolution.

          1. F1 ran on Monza’s banked ovals in the 70s.

            ??
            That was well before that, and the oval was only part of the 10k combined circuit.

          2. sumedh, no, they did not use the banked course in the 1970s – for a start, no form of motorsport used the banked course after 1969.

            F1 only used the banked course in 1955, 1956, 1960 and 1961, but even in the 1950s and 1960s, the banked course was considered far too dangerous for use in F1. The 1960 race saw a mass boycott of the race, with the majority of the teams refusing to enter the race on safety grounds – a point rammed home by von Trips’s accident in 1961, where he and 15 spectators were killed in that crash.

            The wider banked circuit itself was sometimes used for sportscar races, but another fatal accident in 1968 during the 1000km World Sportscar Championship race eventually put paid to that (the 1969 race inserted additional chicanes to reduce speeds through the banked corners, but the banked turns were still considered too dangerous and dropped after that).

            1. a point rammed home by von Trips’s accident in 1961

              This is bolony, von Trips crashed on the approach to Parabolica, a section of track completely uninfluenced by wehter or not you run the Oval

          3. Magnus Rubensson (@)
            23rd April 2021, 9:17

            The Monza banking was never used for any F1 Grands Prix in the 1970s.
            As others have pointed out, the last time was 1961.

            Even without the oval Monza produced some very fast races (e.g. 1967-71).
            From 1971 onwards, the race distance was shortened from 68 laps to 55 laps.
            Chicanes were then added for the 1972 race to bring the speeds down a bit.

            If I may post a link – here is a good article about the history of the Monza oval:
            https://www.circuitsofthepast.com/monza-oval/

      2. Why not have a full oval in Indy!

        And make Friday quali a drag race, and Saturday Qualifying Sprint a dirt race between the F1 haulage trucks.
        All that is missing is a Wrestlemania fight between Russell and Bottas officiated by Matia.

        1. someone or something
          23rd April 2021, 10:06

          @coldfly

          All that is missing is a Wrestlemania fight between Russell and Bottas officiated by Matia.

          Make that a proper boxing match, the prize being the second seat at Mercedes, and I’d watch the hell out of it.

      3. A person somewhere
        23rd April 2021, 8:04

        I think they’d need more than an extra engine allocated, they’d probably need a different engine design, probably braking systems too, and maybe gear ratios – not to mention aero changes. With braking only for pit stops the hybrid would only be getting power from the MGU-H which I imagine wouldn’t work out too well, they’re not designed to run like that.

        It’s why the “what’s faster, an F1 car or an indycar?” question comes down to the track. Anything except an oval, it’s the F1 car, no contest. On an oval? If you want more than a few laps then the indycar because it’s actually designed to do ovals!

        Reply moderated
        1. Why would they need any of these?

          If you use a lower RPM on same engine, it will last the weekend.

          I suppose an oval race will be easy on brakes so the current F1 brakes should be more than sufficient.

          Gear ratios can be changed in an F1 car (admittedly a limited number of times, but can be).

          Without braking, there will be no KERS, true. But that is not a problem. There have been several cases of drivers continuing to race without KERS (if I remember correctly, Ricciardo even won the 2018 Monaco GP without KERS).

          I would argue that F1 car might be faster on an oval too. Especially as all designers will remove all the ‘sticky uppy bits’ across the wings to reduce downforce.

          And what’s more, we may get a race without DRS for once.

      4. @sumedh Only two permanent tracks (COTA, IMS) hold the necessary FIA grade 1, so these two could rotate, no other.

    6. Re COTD, lando to Mercedes, Russell to McLaren.

    7. “On this day in F1”.

      Brilliant reminder of the conflict of being a fan of both Schumacher and Renault(Benetton). Ultimately, I backed Schumacher for the title and got it wrong. Strangely, I’ve been wrong every year since.

      1. It’s nice to see those images again, indeed great battles both in 2005 and 2006 at imola, 2005 was one of the few tracks ferrari was competitive at and 2006 was generally competitive all year, a very hard track to overtake on back then without drs, were it not for that I’m sure both norris and leclerc would’ve got a podium this time around.

    8. The problem with keeping “the dynamic” safe is that Mercedes fully put all the cards in Lewis Hamilton’s hands. Hamilton is a few years from retiring at best, and less than a year from retiring at worst. What? You’re gonna win championships with Bottas instead? At some point Mercedes is going to have to start putting in the hot new young driver alongside Lewis, because he’ll need a year or two to get on Max’s level of championship contending.

      It would be very unwise to not put George in that car next year over Bottas. Why? Because he makes a few mistakes every now and again? Show me a young driver that doesn’t, I’ll wait. Bottas is not going to lead that team to championships after Lewis is gone. And you can find a middle of the road 2nd driver to drive for that team any day of the week and twice on sunday’s. You don’t need to keep him around for that purpose, either.

      1. It would be very unwise to not put George in that car next year over Bottas.

        With a few more races half as bad as last week, I wouldn’t even wait until next year. @aiii
        There might be some silverware lost if they’re not on top of it this season.

      2. Hakk the Rack
        23rd April 2021, 8:23

        Agree. Putting Bottas as number 1 would be same as putting Fisichella as number 1 in Renault in 2007. They need to do a 2006 Ferrari move, when they brought Massa next to Michael, who was leaving F1 back then.

      3. @aiii Agreed, and I disagreed with cotd for similar and more reasons when it was originally posted the other day.

      4. @aiii Russell has proved he don’t need any lead time and can jump straight into the car and be winning, and of course Verstappen the same, so there’s no real need to have a transitional year for either.

    9. Comment of the day is only right as far as the mercs win both championships. If they lose either im sure they will be looking to replace Bottas. At the end of the day they exist to win not to build Team cohesion and good interteam relationships . Although both do aid the reason why they exist. Those are only niceties to have.

    10. So le Clerq would leave Ferrari for 3 times the money.

      1. 2024 is a long time. If the 2022-2023 are a dog, he might want to jump ship.
        But it’s nice to have a team build around you.

    11. I wish IMS would’ve been the resort instead of Miami this whole time.

      The Haas team member, RIP, but the passing must’ve happened elsewhere than in Imola as it probably would’ve otherwise become evident during the weekend.

      An interesting COTD, but where could he go if neither Williams nor Mercedes? Not like next season has lots of vacant drives in other teams.

    12. Anyone saying they would like a new race at X location is meaningless unless they also say which race they would drop from the calendar. I would prefer Indy over Russia, but not at the expense of Spa or Brazil.

    13. we dont need miami bring back watkins

      1. @armando No grade 1, so it’d need to get upgraded first, not that upgrading a track from G2 to G1 is impossible.

        1. why not maybe for 3 years they need change little bit

    14. A third race in the USA sounds a lot when we rarely have more than one race in any given country, but the USA shouldn’t be compared to a country like the UK it should be compared to a group of countries (states) like the EU.

      EU
      Population: 440 million.
      2021 Races: 9 (Italy-Emilia-Romagna, Portugal, Spain, France, Austria, Hungary, Belgium, Holland, Italy-Monza) Not counting the UK or Monaco.

      USA
      Population: 330 million
      2021 Races: 1

      I don’t particularly get the point of going to an oval to not race on the oval. If I was going to add a third race in the USA it would be on the West Coast – California or Vegas.

      1. someone or something
        23rd April 2021, 10:15

        @thelem

        the USA shouldn’t be compared to a country like the UK it should be compared to a group of countries (states) like the EU.

        By that logic, we need a ton of races in China and India.
        I don’t really see the point of staging more and more races in a country where the reception is lukewarm at best.

        I don’t particularly get the point of going to an oval to not race on the oval.

        I don’t get the point of racing on ovals, ever, and I’m glad F1 has stayed clear of such abominations.

        1. By that logic, we need a ton of races in China and India.

          There were rumours of holding two races in China (I can’t see any in 2021, presumably due to covid).

          It’s ultimately about money. Bernie’s strategy was to go to the countries that would pay him the biggest backhanders. Liberty are after the countries with rich fan bases, both in number of fans and in disposable income. How does the value of the sports TV rights market in India compare to the USA?

          I don’t really see the point of staging more and more races in a country where the reception is lukewarm at best.

          In the hope of making it warmer.

      2. When is the Bangladesh GP?

    15. 3 in one single country is not cool.

      1. someone or something
        23rd April 2021, 12:43

        @john-h
        Except occasionally in Italy, maybe. I didn’t hear too many complaints last season, which might have something to do with the fact that F1 was welcomed with open arms, and on gorgeous racetracks with plenty of history on top of that.

        1. There might not have been a lot of complaints last season, but when the alternative was the potential cancellation of the entire season that would have had major impacts on the entire sport, that is perhaps not surprising.

          There is a difference between something intended as a temporary measure under abnormal circumstances and a long term strategy by the organisers of the series that is focussing on a major shift in the way that the sport presents itself and carries out its commercial operations.

          1. someone or something
            24th April 2021, 12:24

            That’s why I said ‘occasionally’. I was not suggesting in earnest that 3 races should be run in Italy regardless of the circumstances. But that it comes rather naturally and to the displeasure of absolutely no one. Now contrast that to the efforts required to even run a second race in the US, and you have all the context you need for my comment to make sense.

    16. As an Aussie in Western Australia, I hate the Timezone for US, Canada, Mexico and Brazil but I usually get up, or stay up, to watch them.

      Please don’t give me an extra two US races.

    17. A third race in the USA sounds a lot when we rarely have more than one race in any given country, but the USA shouldn’t be compared to a country like the UK it should be compared to a group of countries (states) like the EU.

      EU
      Population: 440 million.
      2021 Races: 9 (Italy-Emilia-Romagna, Portugal, Spain, France, Austria, Hungary, Belgium, Holland, Italy-Monza) Not counting the UK or Monaco.

      USA
      Population: 330 million
      2021 Races: 1

      I don’t particularly get the point of going to an oval to not race on the oval. If I was going to add a third race in the USA it would be on the West Coast – California or Vegas.

      But the USA doesn’t have the same fanbase as Europe so you can’t really compare. But a race on the west coast would be more beter place then Miami.

      1. Surely that’s the point? There are 330 million potential fans in the USA.

        How many fans would you lose by dropping the French GP? How many might you gain by adding Miami or somewhere else in the USA.

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