Fernando Alonso, Alpine, Jeddah Corniche Circuit, 2022

Alonso down one engine after Jeddah retirement

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In the round-up: Fernando Alonso will not be able to re-use the engine which suffered a failure in Saudi Arabia, leading to his retirement.

In brief

Alonso ‘lost first engine’ after Jeddah retirement – Rossi

Alpine CEO Laurent Rossi says that Fernando Alonso has lost his first engine of the season after his retirement from the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix.

Alonso was forced to retire midway through the race after a ‘cool the car’ warning message suddenly appeared on his steering wheel. Rossi says that a water pump problem has led to Alonso’s ICE being no longer usable.

“The problem is that this part (water pump) is integrated into the engine, the water pump degraded and fell into the workings of the engine,” Rossi told French publication AutoHebdo.

“If we wanted to repair the engine, we would have had to break the seal and so we have lost that engine. Even if its physical integrity wouldn’t be affected, it’s one less engine for us.”

Women employed by F1 earned 19.1% less on average than men in 2020-21

Formula One Management’s latest gender pay gap report revealed that the commercial rights holder paid its employees who are women an average of 19.1% less than men in financial year 2020-21.

In its latest gender pay report, which all large British-based companies are required by law to provide, Formula 1 disclosed that its workforce on April 5th 2021 was made up of 68% men and 32% women, an increase of 4.13% representation of women since 2019.

On average, women employee’s mean hourly pay was 19.1% lower than men’s. However, this is a shorter gap than April 2020, where the mean pay gap between women and men was 24%.

In their report, FOM said that the organisation “will remain focused on this important issue, and we are confident in the actions we are taking to improve female representation in our business and look forward to reporting further progress in the coming years.

“We are committed to making further progress across all these important areas and are fully committed to ensuring Formula 1 continues to attract and retain the best talent regardless from a wide range of backgrounds and experiences.”

Ferrari ‘no longer disadvantaged’ by power unit – Binotto

Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto says that the team are no longer disadvantaged by their power unit compared to their rivals.

Ferrari suffered their worst season for 40 years in 2020 after they had to redesign their power unit after reaching an agreement with the FIA over legality concerns. The team won the opening race of the season in Bahrain and lead the constructors’ championship after two rounds.

“As we often said last year, we got a disadvantage that we tried to catch up,” said Binotto. “If we look at the data today, we are certainly more in line on the first two races on the analysis we’ve done so far.

“It seems that between manufacturers, between power units of different manufacturers, the difference is very little. [campaigning as if we are really reaching some of the convergence.] So while it was a disadvantage for us last year, it’s not anymore.”

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Comment of the day

Should F1 increase its maximum cap of 24 races a season? Reader Robert believes it is best to leave fans wanting just a little bit more…

I once thought that more would always be better, that a race every week all year round would be perfect. But I have started to believe the perfect amount is when you feel that it’s just short of perfect. That feeling of wanting a bit more is what keeps the interest up, what builds the anticipation and drives you to spend your valuable time on it. As humans we always want more, but when we get it we just want something else instead.

I find myself not wanting much more now, so what we currently have is probably really close to pushing it too far already.

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to D_Omin!

On this day in motorsport

  • 40 years ago today Niki Lauda scored his first win after returning from retirement at Long Beach, for McLaren

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Will Wood
Will has been a RaceFans contributor since 2012 during which time he has covered F1 test sessions, launch events and interviewed drivers. He mainly...

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30 comments on “Alonso down one engine after Jeddah retirement”

  1. “The problem is that this part (water pump) is integrated into the engine, the water pump degraded and fell into the workings of the engine,”

    I laughed so hard!
    I have an idea DTS. Replace the cast of drivers that refuse to act on DTS by female actors, that way you’ll get a lot more female representation.
    On pay gap, looks like FOM knows that you always have to leave a gap. Alonso has taught us all about gaps, Unfortunately since then the only gap he has is behind his seat.

    1. As engineer this is not too smart solution to have a build-in waterpump on a sealed engine i would design it on the same spot but on the outside of the engine so you can replace it. A waterpump has so many moving parts which 1 fails the complete pump fails.

      1. If you were designing an engine for a car or a truck – absolutely, @macleod.
        But this is a racing engine – and one built for a series where all parts are very strictly controlled. The water pump was designed, tested and engineered not to fail and be as small and light as possible.
        If they were failing regularly, it was a bad design choice. If failures are extremely rare, it’s justified.

  2. Neil (@neilosjames)
    4th April 2022, 2:33

    The Shocking Truth about Women in Drive to Survive (Females in Motorsport)

    Shocking? Why?

    There are no female F1 drivers, no female team principals, and I don’t believe any of the prominent, microphone-facing FOM or FIA roles are held by women either. None of the female engineers or strategists get shoved in front of microphones with any regularity, and women are in an overwhelming minority in every single ‘racing-related’ sector of the F1 workforce. The only part of the F1 in which numbers of men and women are even close to representative of the general population is in the support staff, and no one chases support staff around with a microphone.

    Like it, dislike or be indifferent to it, but when I hear a female voice on any F1 programme it’s almost certainly either a presenter or someone one of the presenters knows (Ted Kravitz wanders round saying hello to all the people he knows on his Notebook, for example) saying a few words to said presenter.

    I know DTS isn’t really F1, but it inhabits the same paddock. Drivers’ family members aside, it has to work with the same cast as real F1 broadcasts, and it has to face up to the reality that if you pick 100 random paddock inhabitants with sufficient recognition, authority and standing to be interesting to a viewer, probably 95 of them are going to be men. Including the most interesting 30 or so, before we bump into Claire Williams… and she isn’t there any more.

    I might call that ‘a little bit disappointing’, perhaps, or ‘sadly indicative of how far certain STEM industries need to progress to be truly representative’, but… I really can’t think of a sensible train of thought (and let’s just pretend comparing ‘speaking time’ with ‘running time’ makes sense in a show that isn’t non-stop dialogue) that transports me to a station at which I believe that having hardly any female voices on a show about F1 is ‘shocking’.

    /essay about one word in a headline

    1. It certainly highlights that there’s a problem but it sure isn’t Netflix’s fault. Hopefully with time there will be more female representatives to interview for these sorts of shows.

    2. Maybe the ‘shocking’ part is that in a male dominated sport (all drives, team managers, and FIA/FOM people we see) that this number isn’t 100%.

      DTS did well by splitting the on screen commentators evenly between both genders (although not in screen time*).

      * I guess women are more efficient in their words, or they did not want to spend the same time on screen when being paid 19% less.

  3. That’s a pretty big issue for Alpine if a PU con be wrecked so easily. For their sake I hope its a one off or they could be in real trouble unless they’re allowed to make a design change for “reliability” reasons.

    1. RocketTankski
      4th April 2022, 6:44

      “2 GP engine! 2 GP ! arrgh!”

      1. @RocketTankski – This was funny the first time. Let it go.

      2. Hahah nice!

    2. They are allowed to make designchanges for ‘reliability’reasons but this is a major redesign on a motor.

  4. As I was growing up Ferrari, Mclaren and Williams were the powerhouses of F1. 2006 it was great to see a new team on the podium. Little did I knew (and probably most of the people) how an energy drink company not only would be the team to beat but start dominating this sport. Same happened with Benetton but I was too young to witness that but after 2010 and mainly because of 2011 I started hating them (Seb as well). Now they are just one shy of Lotus’ record of drivers champions. When Mercedes started to dominate it seemed that Red Bull was dropping back a little but after last year they really want to be here and be the black sheep among the others (manufacturers). They bring young talents and now they are building their own engines (well almost). I think no one would have believed back in 2005 this story line to be happen.
    They really gave themselves the wings and are now one of the most succesfull teams out there (and they really deserve it) but I still can’t get it through my head that a can company would be the n.1 team in F1.

    1. As someone who has seen F1 for decades there are always newcomers challanging the powerhouses but Ferrari is allways there (they can have a bad year but recover fast) it’s something what F1 makes great.

      1. @macleod
        I’d remove the word ‘fast’ from your statement though ;-)

    2. Remarkable that at the moment RB is more of a true f1 team than mercedes which is just a sponsor and co-owner.

  5. RocketTankski
    4th April 2022, 7:17

    “2 GP engine! 2 GP ! arrgh!”

    1. Nice one!

  6. It puzzles me that with the budget cap there’s still a limit to components, shouldn’t that in itself prevent wild development runs as teams won’t be able to afford to replace engines every race?

    And even if a limit is kept, why is it still 3 despite ever increasing calendar sizes? It’s kind of silly that it’s clear not a single driver on the grid can manage a full season with 3 engines and there’s no action on this.

    1. Do manufacturer backed teams pay the same for engines as customer teams do, @sjaakfoo?

      Why still 3? Why not?
      I don’t like it either, but in practical terms, there’s no more reason to change it than there is to keep it.
      They wanted reliable engines – that was part of the basis for these engine regs – so just allowing them to start using more without penalty defeats that.
      Even worse, without the reliability concerns, they’ll redevelop the engines to turn that excess reliability into more performance – again undermining the intention of these technical regs.
      If it was about performance, they wouldn’t demand that everyone build the same thing.

      F1’s relationship with engine manufacturers has changed a lot in the last few decades. It is not about building the best racing engine anymore – it’s all about marketing space now.
      The thought of losing engine manufacturers scares F1 so much they are actively rewriting the rules to retain them. Even making concessions for prospective newcomers.

    2. RandomMallard
      4th April 2022, 15:46

      @sjaakfoo The budget cap doesn’t cover engine development. Otherwise the manufacturer teams would have to split their money between that and aero, while the customer teams would only have to buy those engines then spend the rest on aero.

      I too would rather see a slightly higher cap. 4 would probably do nicely, but 5 could also work for a whole season. Especially now customer engine prices are capped by the regs as well I think (I want to say $15 million a year), I think we should be allowing a little bit more freedom with the engines.

      1. I don’t really understand why they do it that way. I think a better rule would be:

        An engine manufacturer can spend any amount they like on development, but then they have to “sell” the engine to any team that wants it (including their own team) at the same cost. They can pick the price.

  7. Does the gender pay gap in FOM reflect the different positions each person occupies?
    Of course not. They never do in the media.
    If there are two men payed $100000 each, and one woman payed $150000 – they still approach it as women being worse off, because men take more of the money.

    Regardless, it’s okay if some women aren’t paid the same as some men. A lot of men aren’t paid the same as some men either. Equally, a lot of men aren’t paid as much as some women. Individual circumstances, and all.
    Add to that that executive pay is often individually negotiated…. Demand more if you you think you are worth it, ladies.
    If the money is that important to you, of course… That seems to be the way everything is valued these days.

    And that thing about women getting less airtime in DTS. So what? Who is counting this? And why?
    Find something more important to do. Seriously.

    1. Surely the point is that the world is made up of 50/50 split between the sexes, give or take. Is there a reason why half the jobs in Formula One can’t be women? No, there isn’t. Going off the pay report, men disproportionately occupy the higher paying roles. Why? Opportunity? Education? Prejudice?

      Highlighting disparity is a good thing – it keeps the conversation going and will help the world move to more equality over time.

      1. I would imagine men are in the higher paying roles because they got there first. A lot of these disparities will slowly disappear over time as more females enter the sport.

        1. johnandtonic
          5th April 2022, 13:50

          I would describe FOM as a media company which owns the commercial rights to a sport (F1). Until 5 years ago it comprised on 1 man (Berne) and his dog. As a media company F1 experience should not be a base requirement for employees, and yet 68% of the work force are men and 73% of the top positions a men. Surely a relatively new company with gender equality as key value would have done better. But lets face it, when FOM was first formed it appointed 3 old white men to be its public face.

    2. If there are two men payed $100000 each, and one woman payed $150000 – they still approach it as women being worse off, because men take more of the money.

      No, they don’t, unless of course that woman works much more hours than the men.

      Gender pay gaps are calculated based on the mean hourly rates. Assuming the above 3 work 40 hours per week, 52 weeks per year, £100k is an average of about £48/hour, and £150k is about £72/hour. This would make the pay gap -50% in this scenario, meaning that the women in the sample make 50% more on average than the men. It doesn’t matter how many people, because it’s the average (mean) hourly rate which counts.

      1. I refer back to my opening question, @drmouse.

        Does the gender pay gap in FOM reflect the different positions each person occupies?

        If the women are in lower-paid, less senior or lower responsibility roles, they are, of course, going to be payed less.
        That’s not an equality issue, that’s just basic common sense.

  8. COTD says it perfectly. I agree entirely. Like many others have said, 20 is the best number of races.

    It is quite telling that in the recent global fan survey, the options for ‘how many races should there be?’ were 1-4, 5-12 or 13+.

  9. The disparity between male and female representation in Drive To Survive is quite an eye opener.

    There are more men than women in F1 clearly, and literally every single F1 driver and team owner is male, so as it stands at the moment – there will always been more male presence on screen than female, it’s unavoidable – DTS don’t have much to work with in that regard. But to get little over 2.5% airtime for women – that’s pretty bad.

    Given that DTS is acting as a portal to bring in new fans, you’d expect it to have broader screen representation. The worse thing is (as a viewer) I’d not even noticed it because I’m just used to seeing typically white males on screen talking about motorsport. I don’t necessarily believe in so called “positive discrimination” (it’s still discrimination, right?), but I do believe strongly in broad representation and although almost every face in F1 is a white bloke, that’s no excuse for for not putting effort into better representation for talking head pieces which don’t involve the F1 crew and aren’t limited to the paddock. There are very good motorsport journalists out there who happen to be female, this site benefits from the work of @hazelsouthwell for example.

    Fingers crossed that in future seasons we see more diversity in F1 (Hamilton and Vettel seem to be the public face of promoting diversity) which will naturally lead to better on-screen representation, and in the mean-time – hopefully side projects such as DTS can actively be more inclusive.

    I’m sure there’ll be plenty of comments which consider the article and perhaps even my comments to be “the PC brigade” – but they don’t get the point that exclusivity doesn’t encourage engagement from those excluded, and we all lose out because of it.

  10. Losing an engine this early effectively guarantees a grid penalty at some point for exceeding ICE allocation.

    How was the early hybrid era performance a crash or an accident?

    How much women speak in a series is such triviality, so I’m surprised someone bothered to calculate in minute detail, but good job, whoever did that.

    COTD has a valid point.

Comments are closed.