Grand Prix 2012 Australian Grand Prix Practice, Qualifying & Race Discussion

Gentleman, start your engines

Despite it feeling only a few weeks since the season ending Brazilian Grand Prix last November the Australian Grand Prix is coming very quickly into view to start of a season which hopefully promises to be a lot closer than the 2011 season where Sebastian Vettel ran away with the Championship and had it virtually won by mid season.

Looking at testing and it is virtually impossible to see who is in the best shape going into the season opener apart from that Mclaren and Red Bull are the two teams in the best shape which really isn't surprising but the big surprise is the continual lack of pace from Ferrari despite a radical new car (the issues I commented on on a previous thread).

As for the midfield it is anyone's guess as all the midfield have all been up and down the testing rankings throughout the winter and it'll only be qualifying where we see a true reflection of where the grid is in terms of reliability. Without a doubt Lotus have had the most work to do after they had to make a major chassis change involving suspension mounts which meant abandoning one of the test sessions but that doesn't seem to have had a major effect on the team and with Kimi Raikkonen at the wheel it is hoped that they can challenge Mercedes after a fairly disappointing 2011 after a strong start.

Once again HRT are the joke of the entire grid as they once again go into the first race of the season without having so much as turned the wheel before after crash test problems earlier this year and it will be a miracle if they actually qualify as they failed to do so in Melbourne in 2011, but they could be joined by Marussia who have also had problems with their new car and have had to test with a modified 2011 car recently and they will also be struggling to even qualify for Melbourne which isn't good news for the team unless they can pull a rabbit out of the hat with the new car.

This seasons cars (apart from Mclaren) are characterised by the distinctive stepped nose due to new regulations about front wing height and this is how the vast majority of teams have interpreted this rule and it seems that only Mclaren are running a 'smooth' nose and it remains to be seen whether this was a correct decision and one that can mean they can challenge for the title after an average 2011 (unless you're Button of course)

For the British viewers 2012 is going to be a completely different viewing experience as Formula One is going to be broadcast on satellite television for the first time. When it was announced that Sky would be broadcasting F1 with BBC showing only half of the races (live) it was met with uproar from all quarters but as more details have been announced, many fans (me included) are rather looking forward to the full F1 package that is being provided this season with the F1 channel being launched in a matter of days!

For Galahads brilliant circuit write up, see here http://cliptheapex.com/pages/melbourne-grand-prix-circuit-albert-park/
 

no-FIAt-please

Champion Elect
Premium Contributor
I can't wait for my first live race of the season, only 43 days to go...:disappointed:

Anyone know how long after the races the BBC highlights will become available?
 

Abnash24

Points Scorer
unrelated but i just realised how easy it is to fix these cars stepped noses, anyway im off to send these to Ferrari
sdfgg.png
 
Interesting season ahead

Ferrari have had to change their exhaust layout with the position of the exits shifting quite a bit, so have Red Bull, although it looked as if they planned it this way and always expected to send a chassis with lots of alternative configurations at the last moment.

Hmmmn

Ferrari admit they are now 'not where they want to be'

RedBull have had some obviously unforseen problem (gearbox they say) also restricting their runs in the last day with a new configuration to 23 laps only.

I wonder if the major changes forced upon both teams were by being too ambitious with making up for the loss of the EBD?

I am not convinced RBR planned all along to bring the 'new' chassis, and I think it was a backup and something went wrong with their plans, I am probably wrong but if not this could mean McLaren are the ones to hit the road running with all their upgrades implemented and tested according to plan
 
J

johnnoble1990

Guest
Can't wait..................Think I might put a couple of quid on Hammy for the first race. I can't help but feel this will be his year.* Form is temporary and class is forever, as they say. And that works both ways Mr Vettel. ;)

*I know I said that last year. ;)
 

Bill Boddy

Professional layabout
Contributor
Interesting season ahead....

Well we all hope so.

RedBull have had some obviously unforseen problem (gearbox they say) also restricting their runs in the last day with a new configuration to 23 laps only.

I wonder if the major changes forced upon both teams were by being too ambitious with making up for the loss of the EBD?

Since the engine mapping restrictions (which may be even stricter this season) RBR have had one of their major cards trumped. Replacing this is the key to their season.

I am not convinced RBR planned all along to bring the 'new' chassis, and I think it was a backup and something went wrong with their plans, I am probably wrong but if not this could mean McLaren are the ones to hit the road running with all their upgrades implemented and tested according to plan

Whatever else happens RBR have to go to Melbourne with a largely untested set of upgrades. Newey has produced some brilliant cars in the past, but during the early stages they have usually suffered from reliability problems, start it fast sort out the reliability later.
 

RasputinLives

Leave me alone I'm on Smoko
Contributor
Surely with the Red Bull's likely to fall apart, The Mclaren's despretely needing a nose job and Ferrari regretting their whole design that Grosjean at odds of 66/1 has to be worth at least a pound bet of anyone money hasn't he? I know I've been bagging out Lotus through out the whole of testing but he continues to top the timing and they continue to look in good shape on the short and long runs. Lets not forget they started last season challeging the leaders as well but this time last year the front runners look untouchable.
 

Abnash24

Points Scorer
The Mclaren's despretely needing a nose job
Does it really? It seems to be working fine for them and this may or may not back up my argument but Marussia and HRT have the same as well, and Marussia uses McLarens Wind Tuneel
 

Kewee

Race Winner
Australia's a complete unknown but you can bet on it being a very different front two rows. Red Bull might just find themselves back on the third row. :D
 

Kewee

Race Winner
Interesting season ahead

Ferrari have had to change their exhaust layout with the position of the exits shifting quite a bit, so have Red Bull, although it looked as if they planned it this way and always expected to send a chassis with lots of alternative configurations at the last moment.

Hmmmn

Ferrari admit they are now 'not where they want to be'

RedBull have had some obviously unforseen problem (gearbox they say) also restricting their runs in the last day with a new configuration to 23 laps only.

I wonder if the major changes forced upon both teams were by being too ambitious with making up for the loss of the EBD?

I am not convinced RBR planned all along to bring the 'new' chassis, and I think it was a backup and something went wrong with their plans, I am probably wrong but if not this could mean McLaren are the ones to hit the road running with all their upgrades implemented and tested according to plan

My understanding is that Ferrari dropped their exhaust layout when they realized it needed further development. Their intention is to complete that work and reintroduce it reasonably early in the European season, though they haven't committed to an exact date.
 
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