Featured Threads Archive
So as we move onto Austin, Texas, Rosberg would appear to be pretty much in control, and, unless Hamilton gets his starts sorted out, or Rosberg DNF for four races in a row, I don't see much changing.
Last year the weather at Austin dominated the race, to say that it was a wet race would be a massive understatement. The rain was so torrential that Q3 was cancelled and Qualifying was on race day. So do we hope for a dry weekend or a really wet one ?
The circuit is 3.427 miles long (5.515km), it's another Tilke designed circuit, one of a few which runs counter clockwise. From the start to the first corner the drivers climb to the highest point on the circuit, making the initial dash to the first corner and the inevitable jockeying for position that much more challenging than the usual start of race chaos. Last year if you remember saw Hamilton and Rosberg fighting for position at the corner with Hamilton winning. Bad feeling between them escalated, and it hasn't really got any better...
As the 1976 season drew to a close, the F1 teams were packing away their kit from the US GP at Watkins Glen and getting ready to return home. James Hunt had won the race and carried a 3 point cushion going into the final round which for the first time would take place in Japan in 2 weeks time.
The teams had all agreed that they would not test in Japan however, at the last minute, McLaren saw an opportunity, packed their gear up and managed to get it on an early flight which would enable them (despite the Gentleman's agreement) to get a couple of days testing at the Mount Fuji circuit prior to the other teams getting there.
So the story goes that the Ferrari mechanics got wind of what McLaren were up to and tried to get their own kit on the same flight. Unfortunately, there was only one phone in the pits at Watkins Glen and when Maranello called to try and confirm the arrangements, it just so happened that the person who answered the phone handed it to a McLaren Mechanic. The...
Just when you thought you knew what would happen next, Nico Rosberg decides to challenge that thought and win with style the Singapore Grand Prix, taking the championship lead in the process. Bernie Ecclestone should be rubbing his hands and laughing out loud, he'll go with a bang. If you have under a rock, you must know that Liberty Media corporation has purchase a controlling stake of Formula One (trademark) from CVC and already there have been sparks between Ecclestone and the new chairman Chase Carey, vice-president of 21st Century Fox (let's remember Fox News is one of its assets) who in turn is owned by no other that Rupert Murdoch. When you hear his name you usually see the word 'unethical' being thrown as well. This is true on both sides of the pond as he is a major holder of News International, well known by our British friends. So let us recap by saying F1 has changes owners and somehow we ended up with a more devious villain than Ecclestone himself who has already...
Some people hate street circuits and some people love street circuits. I happen to be one of the people that love them. The extra skill required to navigate the walled and narrow circuit, along with the driver having to work for every pass, really appeals to me. Therefore believe it or not Singapore is always one of my favorite stops on the calendar. Bahrain and Abu Dhabi may have attempted to steel its thunder where the night race element is concerned but to me Singapore is the ideal setting for a race under the lights with the hustle and bustle of the city going on around it. The venue has given us some memorable moments and talking points over the years and I don't think this year will be much different. One of the things I love about Singapore is it tends to shake the field up and gives the driver a lot more input into whats happening.
From past races you'd probably have to say that Sebastian Vettel, Lewis Hamilton and Fernando Alonso (lets forget 2008) are the best around...
Corsa Rossa. Generations of red machines. There have been Alfa Romeos, and Lancias, and Maseratis, and even Dallaras carrying the most famous of all liveries. The flame of Italian motorsport is, as it has been for more than half a century, brought back home to Monza in the possession of Scuderia Ferrari. None there doubt what the statistics suggest, that it is the greatest team in the history of Formula One.
These are not glory days for Ferrari. 2016 will be remembered as the year of censored team radio messages; frustration has been the key word for them this year. They thought they came in to this season close to Mercedes, but they're yet to snaffle a win - they should have won in Australia and they could have won in Canada, but it hasn't occurred. In fact, Monza probably represents their last chance to get near the silver machines, before the more technical circuits later on favour Red Bull's rapidly improving chassis.
The win will surely go to Mercedes, barring blunder...
People have different opinions about most of the F1 circuits but if there is something everybody agrees on is that SPA-Francorchamps circuit is great, for many their favourite.
How could it not, you've got the Ardennes forest, the very high speed, the ups and downs and iconic turns like La Source, Eau Rouge and Raidillon, Stavelot, Bus Stop. Could it be the motorsport heritage? For as long as cars have gone racing, Spa is associated with velocity. Of course at the turn of the 20th century they used the original circuit of 86km (or was it 118km?).
Even after it was shorten to 15km and then 7km, it kept its pedigree, its spirit. As the race comes closer, the anxiety continues to build in F1 fans; a 4-week summer break may be deserved for the drivers and teams but creates a void that cannot be filled with race reruns or silly season discussion. And it's mind-boggling that they have kept it as is but they've added more and more races (currently we are at 21) making each result of...
Since we've now passed the mid-point of the season and are entering the summer break, it seems like a good time to have a mid-season driver ranking thread, and these sorts of threads always seem to be popular so why not?
I'll kick things off with my own list, and I will include statistics on each driver's team mate battles to try and explain/justify my rankings (which are based partially on intuition and partially on said stats). Qualifying stats completely exclude events where a driver was prevented from setting a representative time due to mechanical failure, e.g. China and Russia qualifyings are not counted at all in the Mercedes battle. Race stats exclude any race where either driver suffered a mechanical DNF.
For the back markers I will be using the modified points system that I have posted before, since the current system doesn't allow any meaningful comparison between them...
Decent race, not a classic but not dull either. Nice controversial penalty for Nico that will keep us busy for a few days no doubt. I enjoyed it, lots of racing between the Renaults and Haas and again with the Mclarens as well.
A 6 from me I think.
31 World Drivers Champions have tasted the nectar of the winner's champagne at a race that crowned them but some are mentioned as near deities in our pantheon while some only continue to receive the plaudits of their dyed-in-the-wool acolytes.
Others, I have an inkling, are footnotes in the sport's travelogue and it's these latter two types that really intrigue me.
You may like to be the first to note why I've indicated 31 Champions but my interest is this, which Champion or Champions do you consider NOT to be Great and why?
Here are my thoughts:
Jenson Button (lovely boy, and my favourite of the last 10 years). Innovative car, teammate without the skills to exploit it.
Mike Hawthorn. Benefited from the largesse of others in his championship season, retired before defending his title.
Keke Rosberg. Unreliability of competition, rivals' misfortune.
Jacques Villeneuve. Dominant car, personality.
So onward to Germany, which is a pleasant surprise to me as I didn't think we were going to get a German Grand Prix for a while. Between dwindling fan attendance, dwindling TV audiences, a lack of funds for circuits and a certain Mr Ecclestone having various legal issues, it looked like Germany would be out in the wilderness for a while. But its not and we've come to race through the trees and forests of the legendary Hockenheimring........only we're not because they cut all the trees and forest section out back in 2002 (boo!). Hockenheim is currently a bit like the Worlds Strongest Man competition in that its all about the grunt. Its also as flat as a female Russian gymnast with the least elevation of any circuit on the calendar. What does all of this mean for the race? Well it will mean that Red Bull and Mclaren will take a step back from where they were in Hungary whilst Force India and Williams will take a step forward. It should suit the Mercedes team down to the ground...
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