In the round-up: Alexander Albon was encouraged by his car’s performance in Jeddah despite failing to finish.
“A lot of positives” despite retirement for Albon
Albon said he had “a lot of positives to take from” the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix despite retiring when he encountered brake problems.
“It’s the best the car’s felt since my time driving at Williams so that’s very positive,” he said. “More just frustrating because we had a lot of potential in the car this weekend and we couldn’t use it.”
The FW45 felt “good all weekend”, said Albon. “It’s just in qualifying we didn’t quite get it right. But in the race, we were fine, we were back to where we normally are. We’ve been quick all weekend.”
Qualifying crucial for title hopes – Vesti
Vesti left Saudi Arabia fourth in the championship, five points behind leader Ralph Boschung, after winning the feature race. He placed fifth and seventh in the first two qualifying sessions of the season.
“For me the biggest decider is probably the quali,” said the Prema driver following his victory yesterday. “You cannot, in this championship, miss out on a good qualifying. If you are out of the top 10 it’s so difficult to score good points that weekend.
“So from my side it’s just focusing on consistent quali, top five, if we can have that every single weekend that would be amazing. It puts the best possibility to score points in the races and obviously in F2, anything can happen. I think that was shown today as well, from P6 on the grid you can win.”
Hamilton “still super-close” with Cullen
Lewis Hamilton says he’s still on good terms with his former physiotherapist Angela Cullen. The pair parted ways after seven years following the Bahrain Grand Prix.
“Me and Ange are good,” said the seven-times champion. “She’s going through a different phase of her life. We’re still super-close. We’ve been texting every day, she’s massively supportive and I’m massively supportive of her. So grateful to have had her with me on this journey, she’s one of my closest friends and she continues to be.”
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Motor racing links of interest:
Monotonous Sunday for the Scuderia (Ferrari)
Vasseur: 'Overall, we can’t be satisfied with today’s result. We did not have the pace we were expecting from our car, especially on the hard tyre. There was also a big gap in our performance level between qualifying and the race.'
Steiner: 'First point this season. We had the speed but didn’t luck into it as some people were in a better position after the safety car, but the drivers fought hard, and we got a point.'
Zhou: 'Track position always makes the difference on street circuits like this one, and, unfortunately, I got stuck in a DRS train once the Safety Car came out. My race was compromised from that moment onwards, and there wasn’t much more we could do.'
Shovlin: 'The car is hard work to get into the right window and it’s not as easy for the drivers as it needs to be, but we’ve certainly found a better balance than in Bahrain and it has been a lot kinder on its tyres'
Hauger: Salvaging sprint race point a positive after qualifying misfortune (F2)
'It’s hard to say (where we would have qualified), obviously not everyone, but a few guys were improving. I’m pretty sure we would have at least been up in the top 10, which could have changed a lot for today. '
Report of $20 billion Saudi bid to buy F1 was ‘speculation’: Sports minister (The Athletic)
'What I know is what I read in the news, honestly. I think it’s just purely speculation, I don’t think there was any serious talk about that'.
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Notable posts from Twitter, Instagram and more:
As for our performance, it’s clear we have a mountain to climb. But we are all incredibly motivated, we will certainly have more tough races to come but as long as we improve each races and going in the right direction, I’m certain we will be successful.
— Jean-Eric Vergne (@JeanEricVergne) March 19, 2023
Someone’s racing licence should be put in the shredder after this embarrassing act of driving 🤨 #IMSA pic.twitter.com/pLBsxjS2Tn
— Ed Spencer (@EdSpencer99) March 18, 2023
Unnecessary grid penalty for Alonso there. No advantage… let’s just race #F1
— Jack Harvey (@jack_harvey93) March 19, 2023
That safety car is preposterous.
— Paul-Henri Cahier (@F1Photo) March 19, 2023
It's absolutely ridiculous that that's caused a safety car. Stroll was parked out of the way and not in the direction of traffic. Just use a VSC.#SaudiArabianGP #F1
— Edward Hardy (@EdwardHardy_) March 19, 2023
As someone that watched every mi of every race for 15+yrs. DRS just kills any excitement for me now. There’s no skill in overtakes 99% of the time anymore. Trying to watch the race, but keep picking up my phone. Just not holding my attention. #F1
— James Parrish (@JamesCParrish) March 19, 2023
FOX announces that @KurtBusch
and @HaasF1Team principal Guenther Steiner will be in the FOX booth next weekend at COTA. #nascar
— Chris Knight (@Knighter01) March 19, 2023
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- Find more official F1 accounts to follow in the F1 Twitter Directory
Comment of the day
The FIA’s handling of Alonso’s penalty left a lot to be desired:
It’s a pretty ridiculous decision to overturn the penalty. Why not just leave the rule as nothing can touch the car for the duration of the penalty. This just muddies it up even further. Can they fit the wheel gun before the penalty is up? How would that be any different?
Happy birthday to Girts, West Pearson, Adub Smallblock and Harsh Barsaiyan!
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9 comments on “Albon had ‘best car since I joined Williams’ before retirement”
20th March 2023, 2:33
When I’m super close to someone, I fire them too. But seriously, I wish journalists would stop asking about this absolute non-issue. I want to interview them and ask why they changed dentists after ten years.
The only issue anyone should be talking about is getting the Mickey Mouse SCs/VSCs under control. Even a yellow flag there would’ve been excessive let alone any type of SC. And this is not the first or tenth time they’ve had a V/SC that was this week. They started getting more cautious after Bianchi, but then around 2019 they decided almost anything needed some sort of safety car. It’s absolutely nauseating.
20th March 2023, 6:43
Questionable SCs were a thing in 2020 & ’21, not before & after anymore, as no such instances happened last season, so only a one-off case.
A yellow flag wouldn’t have been excessive, though.
20th March 2023, 20:12
It was mentioned in commentary the GPS data for the car was somehow wrong making it look like it was on the track.
20th March 2023, 6:41
A lot of positives, yes, but I don’t get why he continued on track with a brake failure rather than pitting for the ‘inevitable’ retirement on the first available opportunity.
Risking trackside stoppage & something further going wrong by pointlessly circling, even slowly, is unworthy & rather irresponsible.
Did he honestly think the brake failure would magically fix itself or go away by driving slowly?
Not the first time he’s arbitrarily decided to do something he shouldn’t have on track, following his blue flag ignorance in the last Monaco GP, even though which blue flags to obey & when isn’t up to drivers.
I don’t get his logic in these situations.
Re Edward Hardy’s tweet: The same point as in another article, i.e., race control shouldn’t mess up with track positions, given the available technology.
James Parrish: Not the case on most circuits & even yesterday, only with Max’s comeback drive through the field.
The penalty overturning possibly opens up a can of worms & sets a precedent for the future
20th March 2023, 7:40
I’d suggest it was more about the team buying time to try a bunch of failure modes before retiring, just to see if it fixed it.
20th March 2023, 11:56
@S Good point, I hadn’t thought about this possibility.
20th March 2023, 11:59
As in any statement FIA makes there is a reason behind it. It might be a stupid reason but there always is. Like now they didn’t have straight footage of Strolls car where it was. They thought it was in the middle of the road so they put out safety car.
21st March 2023, 1:59
VSC along with local marshal flags would’ve sorted out any collision risk until they knew what the situation was, better that they’re equipped/prepared to actually find out though (instant access to onboards / any camera).
21st March 2023, 13:53
If the retrieval Tractor hadn’t been parked so close to Stroll, he would have been able to get his car even further off the circuit negating the bad GPS signal that caused all the kerfuffle. So maybe the Race director needs to have words with all of the “Track Exit Marshalls” to make damned sure there’s enough space or cars that can still move under their own power to get full off the track – with no doubts for poor GPS.
Comments are closed.