Is this season 2004 in disguise?

ATL11

Podium Finisher
Okay I know it's only 2 races in!

Just the way that Seb 'Managed the gap to Button' in Malaysia, I'm a little worried that RBR have more in the tank, so in a way were just playing with the rest of the F1 field.

So unless we see Ferrari or McLaren make significant steps, or RBR racing forced to pull a trailer, I can see this season being like 2004, if you remember those dull years:

Host of rule changes to improve the sport, engine lifespan, rear wing change, aero changes, no launch control, no automatic gearbox & qualifying changes
World Champion started where he left off
Other teams trying to catch up, but far far away
World Champion's No. #2 driver knows his place

Okay I know we could say this about other F1 years, it's just the way Schuey dominated the season from the off in 04, I fear Seb will do the same.

Just it made the season look something like this:

18 races - 15 won by Ferrari
13 won by Schumacher
Schuey won 10 of the first 11 races
World Champion by race 13, it would have been earlier if it wasn't for Jenson in his BAR picking up consistent scraps.
From late April I was washing my Car or in the Garden by 5 past 1.

I do hope it changes & we may see it for China, but I do have a feeling that the cat in this picture is Adrian Newey....
 

teabagyokel

#dejavu
Valued Member
Years One Driver has Won First Two Races:

1953 - Ascari
1954 - Fangio
1957 - Fangio
1969 - Stewart
1973 - Fittipaldi
1976 - Lauda
1979 - Laffite
1982 - Prost
1991 - Senna
1992 - Mansell
1994 - M. Schumacher
1996 - D. Hill
1998 - Hakkinen
2000 - M. Schumacher
2001 - M. Schumacher
2004 - M. Schumacher
2009 - Button

Other teams trying to catch up, but far far away

In qualifying, McLaren were one tenth of a second down. At the same circuit in 2004, Mark Webber (2nd, Jaguar) was six-tenths down in qualifying, and JPM (4th, Williams) was almost a second behind.

World Champion's No. #2 driver knows his place

I don't think he does! I think the events at Silverstone show that if Mark gets a chance, he will do something!
 

snowy

Champion Elect
It has everything to do with tyre conservation, if you can get out in front it is so much easier to conserve your tyres during the three phases. Lewis's race in Malaysia was so compromised by the highly opportunist and forceful Quick Nick. Had Lewis been in clean air or been able to pressure Sebastian everything in that race could have been quite different.

Lewis damaged the set of option tyres for his second stint during qualifying, severely compromising his race. This too is clear indication of the tyre conservation issue and its importance.

Lewis and Jenson's qualifying pace was far closer to Red Bull indicating that both teams have made compromises in the way they use the tyres over a weekend. With RBR choosing to improve their race set up and McLaren choosing to improve their qualifying.

With McLaren's pace being so good bodes well for the season, they just need to find the sweetspot. If we look at the strength and race laps turned by Ferrari on Sunday we can see that they have an incredibly strong car in race trim. They have compromised their qualifying far more than any other top team but unfortunately the race circumstances just haven't worked in their favour.

I don't believe it is a case of the Red Bull having a clear car advantage right now. Sebastian and the team do appear to be using their heads and optimising all the phases of the tyres and a race weekend.
 

teabagyokel

#dejavu
Valued Member
With McLaren's pace being so good bodes well for the season, they just need to find the sweetspot. If we look at the strength and race laps turned by Ferrari on Sunday we can see that they have an incredibly strong car in race trim. They have compromised their qualifying far more than any other top team but unfortunately the race circumstances just haven't worked in their favour.
... because they're qualifying too far back!
 

snowy

Champion Elect
... because they're qualifying too far back!

With tyre degradation, KERS and DRS there is supposed to be more opportunities, changes of position and overtaking, that sort of thing.
 
J

johnnoble1990

Guest
I think the whole of Formula 1 is now designed in such a way that Ferrari-esque dominance is improbable. I would've though Mclaren and Ferrari would push Red Bull a little more in the future. This said, Vettel has been very impressive in the first 2 races.

Nope the 2004 races are terrible boring compared with 2011 ones

This is a good point. The problem with 2004 was individual races were boring and the title race was boring. In 2009, the title race wasn't great but we did have some interesting races and stories. Then last season was the best title race of my life but it had a mixture of borefests made up by some thrillers. Even if Red Bull run away with the title, which i doubt, he individual races so far have been great.
 

teabagyokel

#dejavu
Valued Member
With tyre degradation, KERS and DRS there is supposed to be more opportunities, changes of position and overtaking, that sort of thing.

Almost 76% of all World Championship races have been from the first 3 on the grid; 82% from the first 4 on the grid. OK, there'll be more changes of position, but historically there is only an 18% chance of winning if you start below 4th!
 

teabagyokel

#dejavu
Valued Member
The last dry race to be won from outside the top 4 was the 2009 Italian GP, where the front three on the grid were light on fuel.
 
J

johnnoble1990

Guest
I think people need to remember that winning back to back races happened 4 times, with 4 different drivers last season and that was the tightest season for years. These things happen. They don't necessarily mean the season is over. In fact, it is this uncertainty that means it isn't over.
 

MCLS

Anti F1 fan
Valued Member
The middle stint, in my opinion, showed to us why it won't be like 2004, we saw Hamilton closing on Vettel with Alonso closing on Hamilton. It's a shame we never saw the three of them slug it out. Fighting for 1st place was the only thing missing from the race
 
J

johnnoble1990

Guest
Yeah. Clearly there was something wrong with Hamilton's tyres or car for him to lose so much time on his team mate. Another strategy cock up cost Mclaren that race.
 

MCLS

Anti F1 fan
Valued Member
What I didn't get is why they pitted Hamilton that early, his tyres were in good shape and he was catching Vettel. Undercutting wasn't going to work because he was still not close enough
 

snowy

Champion Elect
It was the race strategy of the simpleminded.
Lewis
12 1:51.199 Pit
13 2:04.252
14 1:45.676
15 1:44.079
16 1:45.445
17 1:44.102
18 1:43.388
19 1:43.304
20 1:43.299
21 1:42.919
22 1:42.966
23 1:43.009
24 1:45.618 Pit

Vettel
13 1:50.561 Pit
14 2:05.241
15 1:45.211
16 1:45.360
17 1:44.026
18 1:43.993
19 1:43.450
20 1:43.393
21 1:43.520
22 1:43.500
23 1:43.447
24 1:43.435
25 1:45.734 Pit
 
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