Grand Prix 2013 Singapore Grand Prix Practice, Qualifying & Race Discussion

So break out your long haul baggage boys we're back on the fly aways and we're off to Singapore.

A lot has been said about Singapore but one thing that can't be argued about is how jaw droppingly spectacular Formula One's premium night race is at on the Marina Bay Street Circuit. We all know that the idea of the night race was a concept Bernie pushed for European viewing figures but wow how amazing does it look? The lit up city of Singapore is the perfect background and its success is shown in the fact that both Abu Dhabi and Bahrain are trying to move in on the turf. I've always loved Singapore For me it is the showpiece of the fly aways, the Asian Monaco.
I know some people will agree with a cynical grunt about it being the Asian Monaco as its viewed as a dull track with very few overtaking spots and while it is true that overtakes can only be done with a great amount of skill for me Singapore is a drivers circuit and we've had our fair share of action if we look back.

The place certainly has character and history for a race that's only been running in its modern format since 2008. The very first race in 2008 was of course THAT race with THAT Piquet crash. Something that has meant the corner in question shall always been known as Piquet corner if only unofficially. But lets not forget we had some other memorable moments at that race. Who can forget the site of the (slightly tubby) Ferrari pit crew rushing down the pitlane after Massa pulled away with the fuel hose still attached leaving his championship on tatters. Alonso is still listed as the official winner of that race but very few of us agree he was. The majority of people will refer to that race as Nico Rosberg's first win which I completely disagree with. Rosberg got just as much an advantage from the Piquet crash as Alonso. If it was deemed cheating the result should have been declared from the running order the lap previous to the Piquet crash which would have made Massa the first official winner - it would also have given him half points and the 2008 world title. 2009 was all about Lewis Hamilton although most people will remember it for Rosberg's top notch performance spoiled by crossing the pitlane exit line and getting a penalty. 2010 was Alonso vs Vettel with Fernando sitting just in front of Seb for the whole 60 laps after a tasty defence off the start line. We also saw a still much debated coming together between Webber and Hamilton off a safety car re-start. 2011 was the season of Vettel dominance and Singapore was not much different and I'm still not sure whether Button was really pushing him that day or he was just taking it easy. 2011 had more to discuss with yet another Hamilton/Massa coming together. Which brings us to last year which had all the right elements for a classic with Hamilton on pole, Maldonado second and Vettel in third but when Maldo got a poor start and Lewis's gearbox went on lap 23 no one could really live with Vettel who is a master round here at the best of times. 2012 did see one first though. Michael Schumacher crashed in to the back of Jean-Eric Vergne and actually got out of the car an apologised to JEV because the accident was his fault! No wonder he chose to retire.

So race number 6 is about to come up with some slight changes to the track lay out as the Singapore Sling at turn 10 has been reconfigured so drivers have to negotiate a flowing left hander and whilst, after the last two races, expectations are low but I have a feeling Singapore is going to throw us up and event. It is true that Sebastian Vettel is king of Singapore but Alonso has always been hot round here and on occasions Hamilton has looked unbeatable but has had some very bad luck. Other than China this is probably Rosbergs best track and Button has always ran well here so we do have the right ingredients for a close fight and some wheel to wheel racing which probably bring down the already high odds of a safety car. Someone who has never had a good day at Singapore is Kimi and if you throw in the fact Grosjean has always been average here (he replicated the Piquet crash in practice in 2009 much to the embarrassment of his team) and I wouldn't expect a good weekend for the team from Enstone. Di Resta got his best result ever round here but with Force India falling away I can't see him repeating it. Williams have always been good round here but this year they'll need a miracle. Toro Rosso might be worth a bet for a result though with the car looking good, Ricciardo on a high and Vergne being a bit of a street circuit demon. Although the best bet is Hulkenberg in the top 5 as he is flying at the moment.

So love it or hate it no one can argue that Singapore isn't unique and I'm sure as always with this place we'll have something to argue with each other about for weeks afterwards.
 

Blog Zbod

Podium Finisher
Thank you for that, Fenderman. If the story proves to have legs, provided I am the first to remark to it, I'll start a thread in Technical.
 

Blog Zbod

Podium Finisher
If you watch this and listen carefully whenever a Renault-engined car comes past, when you can pick that one car's exhaust note out of the crowd, you'll hear that same sound coming from Caterhams and Williams as well.

 

Bill Boddy

Professional layabout
Contributor
All that I can hear is a couple of National Anthems, prize presentations and accompanying malarkey. There's a much better one on the RBR thread where the only odd engine sound is that coming out of the number one car.
 

Blog Zbod

Podium Finisher
"This different engine noise has been there all year in the Red Bull. It's true it's maybe more obvious in Singapore because it is a street circuit and people can watch in the corners but if you go to winter test, already in Barcelona, we were in corners following the test session and the Red Bull was a different sound."
-- Fernando Alonso
 

Blog Zbod

Podium Finisher
Marca.com, quoting an unnamed Scuderia Ferrari spokesman regarding the RB9's phantom traction control:

"La gente habla mucho sin saber exactamente lo que se ve y se oye en una grabación o un vídeo."

People are talking smack without knowing what they're seeing or hearing.


Whiting: Vettel’s car complies with the regulations, there are no irregularities

"...Formula 1 race director Charlie Whiting has told Sport Bild: “[FIA technical delegate] Jo Bauer has found no irregularities. Everything is under our control, and Vettel’s car complies with the regulations.” "
 

Blog Zbod

Podium Finisher
The FIA's ineptitude again has created a grey area, ripe for exploitation. If you define traction control as any device capable of preventing the driven wheels spinning under power, then wings are de facto traction control and should be banned. Or maybe this is another exception under that silly "it's not their primary purpose" rubric.

My suspicion is that this system works by boosting the Coandă-created downforce by that TR-permissible 50 ms in advance of boosting the power, so the increase in downforce comes in advance of the increase in torque. So instead of the tyres being dependent on a rise in road speed for the additional grip, the additional grip comes first, before it is required. The driver trades an instant's lack of throttle response for an extra measure of downforce. Like turbo lag, you learn just put your foot down that instant sooner and trust that the grip will be there.

But I doubt Whiting will be reversed this time, because the FIA are fully aware what Red Bull are up to. Niki Lauda was quoted saying that the FIA were aware what RBR were doing when they were developing this system, and retooled it (at least once) to circumvent the FIA's reservations, which presumably is what they're running now.. So this isn't likely to turn out like the flexy front wing or the hinged tea tray. The FIA already know and approve.


Which raises the question, how can exhaust overrun through an EBD constitute a moveable aerodynamic device and this not? Or maybe that's just evidence that my downforce-before-torque theory is off the mark.
 
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Mephistopheles

Banned
Contributor
Okay so now the teams presumably know what is going on it is to late in the season to do anything about it in regards to their own cars and it will be totally irrelevant for next year with the new power plants and the ERS, game over as far as this subject is concerned.....

Check and Mate as they say in Russia, Red Bull/Newey have/has played another blinder....

Oh god I wish that smug git Horner would just **** off somewhere and never come back....
 
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