Grand Prix 2019 Australian Grand Prix Practice, Qualifying & Race Discussion

There's still another test session before the F1 season kicks off in Melbourne on 17th March but lets get the hype going as we enter the 69th season of the Formula One World Championship. It will be the usual early start for UK viewers if you able to watch live with Sky starting their broadcast (or narrow cast if the declining number of viewers is true) at ten past five in the morning. Yes, there is a five o'clock in the morning now.

The 2019 season is long. We are starting earlier in March than normal and the last race is on 1st December at Yas Marina. In amongst all this the 1,000 GP will be held in China on April 14th. There had been suggestions of trying to run the race in the UK to bookend race 1 and race 1,000 at Silverstone but anyone who can recall the Easter GP of 2000 will realise what a very silly idea this would be. I went to a WEC race at Silverstone in April a few years ago and it snowed. Enough said.

So can we hope for a close, exciting and entertaining season with a close battle for race wins and the championship? I have no idea. Testing has suggested Ferrari are the team to beat but then it has suggested this for a few years and the Scuderia has failed to deliver. I suspect the Mercedes will be up to speed come Australia when then take the bag of cement out of the cockpit. Valterri Bottas is talking tough in the season build up, I have a feeling he will roll over and the team will take it in terms to tickle his tummy as each race goes by before they part ways at the end of 2019.

Charles le Clerc should give Sebastian Vettel a run for his money at the red team, it will be fascinating to see how the team dynamic develops and if the young pretender can rattle the four times world champion in the way Daniel Ricciardo did at Red Bull. Talking of Red Bull, it is a new era as they move to Honda power. Testing has shown the engine to be finally getting some reliability and Helmut Marko claims they are behind Ferrari but ahead of Mercedes. This may well be wishful thinking on Helmut's part but I do hope the Red Bull can mix it up the front.

Behind the top three teams Renault and the newly branded Alfa Romeo team look like being at the head of division two with Toro Rosso not too far behind. McLaren, Racing Point and Haas will be hoping to get closer to these two as the season develops whist poor old Williams will simply be grateful to met the 107% rule if current form continues.

So what of Melbourne itself? It took over as the home of the Australian GP from Adelaide in 1996 and has produced, in equal measure, some of the most exciting and boring F1 races I have seen. I hope 2019 proves to be the latter, if not I will have to look to Formula E to continue to compensate for the dirth of excitement in F1.

So stats fans, which drivers (according to Wikipedia) have the most wins at the Australian GP? Well there are two with four wins, Michael Schumacher (well durr) and Lex Davidson. Who he you ask? Well, as much as Formula One would like to think it holds the intellectual property on the term Grand Prix lots of other races have been given this title and Lex won races back in the 50's and 60's.

These races were run to different rules, Davdison's win in the the '54 race being to F2 spec, the '61 race was Formula Libre and looking at the list of entrants it's quite an eye opener. You had Cooper F1 and F2 cars racing against road cars like the Austin 8 and Zephyr. Can you imagine the bleating from today' s drivers if they came up behind a Fiesta or a Mondeo half way through a lap at Melbourne. It's bad enough for the poor little loves when they have to lap a back marker who's only marginally slower than they are.

Back to the Grand Prix pre-85. There is a stunning list of winners including Jim Clark, Graham Hill, Alan Jones and, inevitably, Jack Brabham and Bruce McLaren. These were the days when F1 drivers had to race in various series to make ends meet and were often contracted by the teams to run in F2 and F3 races as well as F1.

Here's another for you stats fans, the Australian GP has been won by two father and son combos (I wasn't sure how else to put this so please forgive my rather clumsy description). Graham and Damon Hill should be easy to work out but Alan Jones' father Stan won the race in 1959 in a Maserati.

Before I leave you to get excited about the upcoming season, one last pointless fact for you to take a guess at. Only one driver won the Australian Grand Prix at the full World Championship event and in the Formula Pacific era, who he?

Welcome to F1 2019.
 

F1Brits_90

Champion Elect
wow that's brilliant. groundskeeper is a intresting job, all the tricks to keep the pitch looking pristine 9 months in yr, English isnt know for its great climate. yep that how most football fans end at the specific clubs, because as a child you dont get say in the matter, as family member takes you, who was probally taken when they were a child & cycle continues :D
 
Sorry to be thick here Publius Cornelius Scipio but is that PU issue something that they would only pick up amongst other traffic, or is it something they should have realised anyway? In testing they don't run close to other cars as such do they, so that could have hidden the issue perhaps?

You're not being thick, it's just very hard to speculate. From my personal experience all teams run tests (now I assume simulations) of the race conditions for each event, in essence they make many runs using various cooling set ups, until they find the solution that allows them higher top speed (ie less openings for cooling) and enough cooling. By the looks of it Ferrari got that wrong. I don't know to what extrent it is possible to simulate such temperaturs with computers, my personal experience was running all day up and down an empty airfield with different openings for the radiators, I assume that things have move on a bit from them. Last night I was watching a video were they showed how closed the bodywork of that Ferrari was compared to the Mercedes
 
Last edited:

Angel

Race Winner
Contributor
You're not being thick, it's just very hard to speculate. From my personal experience all teams run tests (now I assume simulations) of the race conditions for each event, in essence they make many runs using various cooling set ups, until they find the solution that allows them higher top speed (ie less openings for cooling) and enough cooling. By the looks of it Ferrari got that wrong. I don't know to what extrent it is possible to simulate such temperaturs with computers, my personal experience was running all day up and down an empty airfield with different openings for the radiators, I assume that things have move on a bit from them. Last night I was watching a video were they showed how closed the bodywork of that Ferrari was compared to the Mercedes

In other words they have to make significant modifications or else write off their season based on what happened in the first race? Thanks for explaining this to me, I appreciate it a lot :) That is why I've always thought you are a very nice man :friends:
 
Last edited:

Ruslan

Podium Finisher
Bring back Monty? seriously they need to find a leader and stick to him/her, changing their bosses every other year doesn't look like a winning strategy
Well, I don't know if Arrivabenne was any good, but I gather that part of the reason he was replaced was that Binotto was extremely unhappy with him (was going to quit?).

Trying to sort out the musical chairs (this gets complex):

CEO of Ferrari:
Montezemolo: 1991 - 10 September 2014
Marchionne: 2014 - 25 July 2018
Camilleri: July 2018 to present

Director:
Todt: 1994-2007
Domenicali: 2008 - until April 2014
Mattiacci: April-November 2014
Arrivabenne: November 2014-Janary 2019
Binnoto: Since 7 January 2019 (been with Ferrari since 1995)

Chief Technical Officer:
Ross Brawn: 1996-2006
Aldo Costa: 2007-2011
gap
James Allison: 2014? - 27 July 2016
Mattia Binnoto: 27 July 2016 - 7 January 2019
Laurent Mekies: 2019-

Chief Designer
Rory Byrne: 1996-2004
Aldo Costa: 2004-2006
Tombazis: 2006-2011
Pat Fry: 2011-2013 (chassis technical director....there was no chief designer)
James Allison: July 2013 - 2014
Simone Resta: 2015-2018
Is there one?: 2019
 
In other words they have to make significant modifications or else write off their season based on what happened in the first race? Thanks for explaining this to me, I appreciate it a lot :) That is why I've always thought you are a very nice man :friends:

let's hope not, but it doesn't look as if their car is as good as we were led to believe that it was after Barcelona. I hope that they can be competitive for the rest of the season otherwise it's going to be dull.

I think that their main problem is the front end of the car, if that is as extreme as some are suggesting then they will struggle every time the conditions are not 100% suitable for their car.

With respect of the cooling issue I guess that it might just be a mistake when they decided how to set up the car for Melbourne. I have seen some who were mentioning that all Ferrari powered cars were relatively slow on the main straight last Sunday.

Please also consider that my technical knowledge is rather limited so I might get something wrong here. To me Vettel's Ferrari didn't look as if it had a lot of understeer as some were saying but rather that it was sloding a lot, maybe turn in wasn't great
 
Last edited:

F1Brits_90

Champion Elect
Screenshot_20190323-125956.jpg
 

Il_leone

Champion Elect
Spaghetti culture of Ferrari has always been their problem .. the most successful period was Todt-Brawn-Schumacher-Byrne-Stepney because they all knew who was in charge and who to go to sort things out

Fighting within at Ferrari just mentally drains the driver - it happened with Prost then Alonso so Vettel has been there a while and must be feeling the same things especially last year the team did not go out to back him. That was a perfect example of no leadership and rather people trying to keep their noses under the table.

Arrivabene- I think he was suppose to be out the year before but somehow he stayed on for a year but he kept ducking answering questions whenever it was on TV
 
Top Bottom