Vettel: “This is the hardest year to catch up” due to cost cap

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In the round-up: Sebastian Vettel says the F1 order at the start of the year is unlikely to change under current constraints.

In brief

Cost cap making it harder for teams to rise up order

Aston Martin driver Sebastian Vettel thinks the competitive order in Formula 1 is unlikely to change much before the end of this season due to the impact of the cost cap on the development race.

“It’s the same old game,” he said. “Nothing has changed. It’s been like this for as long as I can remember. So I have never seen a team starting last in the beginning of the season and all of a sudden being in the front at the end of the season. You don’t catch up. And probably this is the hardest year to catch up because you can’t spend money. It is what it is.”

Mini sets the post-season pace as F3 test starts at Jerez

While Formula 1 and Formula 2 do not finish their 2022 seasons until late November, Formula 3 already has and is spending this week at Spanish track Jerez to do three days of post-season testing.

Gabriele Mini, protege of former FIA president Jean Todt’s son Nicolas, set the pace on the opening day with the Hitech GP team.

The Italian set his fastest lap in the morning session, heading Art Grand Prix’s Kaylen Frederick and Campos Racing’s Pepe Marti. Frederick came to the fore in the afternoon session, but could not match the earlier pace, while several teams switched focus to doing longer runs. The test action was stopped several times by incidents, one of which Mini caused after he topped the times.

Alonso adds F3 racer Marti to his driver management stable

Formula 3 racer Pepe Marti has joined A14 Management, the driver management company owned by Fernando Alonso.

Launched only six months ago, the firm already supports the careers of drivers in Formula 2, Formula Regional, Formula 4 and karting, and 17-year-old Mart is the fifth signing.

He came third in Spanish F4 last year, stepped up to Formula Regional Asia and came second, then made an even bigger step to race in F3 where he came 26th in the standings in his rookie season. He already had links to Alonso through the F1 world champion’s Kimoa clothing brand.

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Comment of the day

The FIA’s announcement of the 2023 F1 calendar, which has expanded to 24 grands prix as anticipated, prompted many questions about how serious the talk of emissions and cost-saving were by the FIA and F1. The races in North America are under particular scrutiny for not being grouped together, but would that have been the best solution for the paddock?

It isn’t really clear how much can be saved by ‘bundling’ the North American races. Yes, it looks and sounds like a good idea to put some of Montreal, Miami, Texas and Las Vegas in a group, but is there really any saving?

The distances between them are great enough that they will still be fly-in events. Just too far to go by road in the time available. Typically 3,000km+ between them. Shortest hop, Miami to Austin, 2,100km. Mexico and Brazil are flights regardless.

Just think of the cultural exchange opportunities having the team personnel spending weeks on end in the heartland of the USA, going hotel to hotel…
NS Biker

Happy birthday!

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On this day in motorsport

Lewis Hamilton flew to pole position by over four-tenths of a second today in 2012 in Singapore

Author information

Ida Wood
Often found in junior single-seater paddocks around Europe doing journalism and television commentary, or dabbling in teaching photography back in the UK. Currently based...

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12 comments on “Vettel: “This is the hardest year to catch up” due to cost cap”

  1. There is never a hardest year for excuses.

  2. But flying 3,000km is better than flying 13,000 for a round trip.

  3. I am not sure why is RaceFans lately referring the french F2 and F3 team as “Art”. It is “ART”.

    Re flights and emissions, the problem is not the spread of the American/Asian races, but the fact that, even if you put them together in the calendar, people still travel from the venue back to London the Monday after, and then back to America/Asia the week after. You do not only have to put them together in the calendar, but make them back-to-back. And I am not sure teams and journalists would accept triple back-to-back out of Europe. Probably the best solution is conventional back-to-back, i.e.:

    – Flight to Canada from Europe.
    – Next week race in, say, Miami: flight from Montréal to Miami.
    – Flight to Europe again from Miami.

    1. @diezcilindros – typing Art is just lazyness of us as holding shift while typing is a lot of work to type ART.

  4. Mclaren in 2009 is a pre-cap example.

    Regarding COTD, the shortest distance both via air & road is between Austin & Mexico City.
    However, I agree that grouping all North American mightn’t necessarily be for the better, but rather over climatic conditions than travel distances between locations, especially Montreal’s.
    The only thing wrong with NA event schedulings is essentially not grouping LV with COTA & Mexico City despite being at the tail-end like them.

    1. For me it’s strange why Miami is a standalone event. Is there any reason for it not to be double header with Montreal in June?

  5. Comment of the day is BS: Even a short air-hop is better than two transatlantic flights, and a lot of equipment can travel 3000 miles by truck in about 60 hours. The 1300 miles between Austin and Miami or Vegas is little more than the distance of Zandfoort to Monza… Montreal and Mexico are quite a distance, true, but at least the M-A-V or V-A-M are doable.
    But maybe there are other reasons to keep their dates apart (get the same attending public on two or more events). At least be honest then, and say so.

  6. Pastor Maldonado. LOL

  7. Mini’s never gonna get picked up by Mercedes or Audi – he’ll have to change his name!

  8. some racing fan
    23rd September 2022, 8:11

    I had responded to the COTD with the point being that you could pair all the Americas races (except for Miami) the easiest in autumn- provided F1 goes to Montreal in September 2 weeks after Monza, and Singapore and Japan are moved to April. From late September onwards Montreal is too cold for an F1 race- F1 used to hold the Canadian GP in late September before 1982- and the first race in Montreal in 1978- the one Gilles won was held on 8 October- and it was 5C (41F) on race day.

    The only thing about Miami is that it is much harder to hold that race in autumn because of the NFL regular season, which takes place from September to January, and the University of Miami college American football team also plays at Hard Rock Stadium, usually on Saturdays when the Dolphins aren’t playing there. The Dolphins play there at a minimum of 8 times a year (16 games in one season, 8 at home and 8 away, and up to 11 times if they have a successful season), and F1 could possibly have a race in Miami in November, if they coordinated with the NFL and the NCAA- which is already a lot of work for all 3 parties.

    1. some racing fan
      23rd September 2022, 8:20

      Also, the absolute stupidest thing of many stupid things about this calendar is the one week gap between Vegas and Abu Dhabi. There are 11 time zones that seperate Vegas from Abu Dhabi- and Emirates does an A380 flight directly between Los Angeles (270 mi/432 km from Vegas) and Dubai (85 mi/139 km from Abu Dhabi) that, depending on the conditions can take 15 to 16 1/2 hours.

      It’s the same with Baku and Miami- a flight between Baku and Miami via Istanbul can take up to 15 1/2 hours, depending on the conditions (around 3 hours from Baku to Istanbul, and 12 to 12 1/2 hours from Istanbul to Miami, plus the layover).

  9. Of course, Seb, for you it is pretty hard to catch up. Nigh impossible

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