Nick Heidfeld

Galahad

Not a Moderator
Valued Member
Hope isn't going to pay the bills, nor will it last for very long if Senna keeps losing positions to Lotus drivers in races.

As for Heidfeld, he was one of the most dominant F3000 champions in history - back when that was a difficult series to win - and his Mercedes support was fully earned, just as Lewis Hamilton's and Paul di Resta's was. I prefer to listen to the opinions of those who worked with Nick at Jordan, Williams and BMW rather than those who can, apparently, only remember the last 6 months.

I'm sure Nick will get the BMW DTM drive, because Theissen owes him that at the least.
 

Road of Bones

MTC Mole
Premium Contributor
Agree Galahad - I remember Nick's F3000 championship well (in the West McLaren colours), and thought he was a shoo-in for Mika's seat in 2002.

But then Ron was seduced by Kimi's icy blue eyes, and Nick's career went into toilet-mode. He's a bit like the floater that wouldn't flush...(no, I don't think I'll continue with that analogy! :embarrassed:)
 

teabagyokel

#dejavu
Valued Member
Nick has never been a qualifier. That stood out to me when I was compiling QWC, he always has done better in the races. As I say, its a question of methodology, but he has always done his best work on a Sunday.

How many team-mates has Heidfeld ever been beaten by? A couple, granted. Kobayashi in the last 6 races of 2010, Kubica in 2008 (and only in 2008, mind) and Frentzen in 2003. Technically, I suppose Timo Glock in 2004 counts, but thats a different story.

He has beaten (in the same car) two World Champions [Villeneuve/Raikkonen], one nearly World Champion [Massa] and one extremely highly regarded driver [Kubica]. And Mark Webber.

That's not perfect, but its not bad. Not everyone can be a top driver, and I think Heidfeld was top of the second division, and underrated for a long time.
 

EvilWhippet

Podium Finisher
Bruno put the car out of the points.

Heidfeld would have been much further ahead if it weren't for youger drivers mistaking him for a deformable barrier. Still more than any other Renault driver, mind.

I'm sure Renault will be given plenty of money by the FIA when they take into account their emotional boost. They're currently 5th in the title chase are they not? But the extra emotional boost bonus puts them 4th.

Don't know how the comparison to top teams dropping drivers came into this, totally abstract in comparison. Particularly with my point being they shouldn't have dropped anybody...

I've been ready to drop this one long ago, but if you wanna keep up go ahead.
 

Il_leone

Champion Elect
I do wonder if Dani Bahar/ Proton are pressing a few buttons and telling Eric the team aint getting more money until next season and all development funding is not going to increase etc or you need to put Senna in the car to bring back memories of Lotus

Is it a strange decision when giving the fact the last time Renault dropped a driver mid season they ended up zooming towards the back of the grid

As for Nick Heidfeld he's never been a good qualifier ..he's more a steady racer who will come through the field and pick up points but not quite as impressive as Button

As teayokel confirms Heidfeld's Cv is actually impressive given the teammates he has beaten..

Cast your minds to why he did not get the Mclaren drive despite heavily backed by Mercedes from German F3 and F3000. When it came down to replacing Mika...Ron had an issue with the QUIET NICK persona and that he is a sponsors nightmare.

Frentzen beating him in 2003 almost finished his F1 career when you consider HH was at the end of his career and spent the last few seasons getting sacked and fighting to secure drives

Mario Thiessen said Heidfeld was a world class driver by 2007 but then he also said having Kubica alongside him from late 2006 made him find 0.5 second per lap.

You get the impression because of his persona he does not appear ambitious or hungry or sits on his laurels a bit because he can get drives based on his nationality ( Mercedes, BMW etc)
 

Il_leone

Champion Elect
I think Renault were maybe expecting too much of Heidfeld thinking if he is as good as Kubica based on their BMW days then he should be battling to get the car onto podiums not getting 7th, 8th etc

His quali has let him down a few times where he should be battling to get near top 10 not 15th,/ 16th etc
 

Slyboogy

World Champion
Contributor
As impressive as Heidfeld's record may be against the top drivers, we need to look at it realistically.

Raikkonen was in his rookie year and only did 20 odd open wheel races before he jumped into F1, and even then just finished 3 points behind Heidfeld. Again in 2002, Massa was a rookie himself and known as "wild" even then finished 3 points behind Heidfeld.

He then got beat comfortably by a driver who was in decline, got beat by Timo Glock the following year.

Went on to beat Webber and Villeneuve (surprised on how he got a drive). Bet Kubica who was in his rookie year, and got comfortably beat in the following year even though BMW went developing in his favour. Next year beats Kubica by 2 points but you could argue again the development went with his way, and Kubica was ruled out of at least a 2nd place in Australia.

He is only 34 and is not consistently getting a race seat, it must be saying something.

Is he good enough to be on the grid? Yes

But then would you have a driver that's on a decline and has limited years in the sport, or would you rather choose a youngster that can reward you later on in a season or two?

Should he have gotten the drop by Renault by mid-season? Nope, but that's a different matter.

Main point is, I don't think teams would be rushing to hire Heidfeld as the reasons above.
 

Il_leone

Champion Elect
As impressive as Heidfeld's record may be against the top drivers, we need to look at it realistically.

Raikkonen was in his rookie year and only did 20 odd open wheel races before he jumped into F1, and even then just finished 3 points behind Heidfeld. Again in 2002, Massa was a rookie himself and known as "wild" even then finished 3 points behind Heidfeld.

He then got beat comfortably by a driver who was in decline, got beat by Timo Glock the following year.

Went on to beat Webber and Villeneuve (surprised on how he got a drive). Bet Kubica who was in his rookie year, and got comfortably beat in the following year even though BMW went developing in his favour. Next year beats Kubica by 2 points but you could argue again the development went with his way, and Kubica was ruled out of at least a 2nd place in Australia.

He is only 34 and is not consistently getting a race seat, it must be saying something.

Is he good enough to be on the grid? Yes

But then would you have a driver that's on a decline and has limited years in the sport, or would you rather choose a youngster that can reward you later on in a season or two?

Should he have gotten the drop by Renault by mid-season? Nope, but that's a different matter.

Main point is, I don't think teams would be rushing to hire Heidfeld as the reasons above.
Lets be honest he's had enough chances over talented drivers like Pantano, Paffett, Davison who have not been given a fair crack in F1..people want to compare him to Button seeing they both started in 2000..difference is Button made his opportunities count ..Heidfeld did not... I think either 2008 BMW was a better car than Mario anticipated in which Heidfeld underperformed OR Kubica drove absolutely out of his skin to make it look better than it really was.

2009 Yes Heidfeld beat Kubica by 2pts thanks to the opening race where Kubica went all out for a win and crashed with Vettel...but really if you ask people about the two drivers

Kubica ; Unlucky in Aus but brilliant in Brazil in underpowered BMW

Heidfeld ; Who ? I don;t remember him featuring too often except for nearly hitting Webber twice in the pitlane

Yes the furore around Raikkonen being granted an F1 licence with no F3 or F3000 experience I remember it. Heidfelds career was on a slide because he thought by being associated with Mercedes he was going to get the Mclaren drive and was really rescued by Mario Thiessen who kept insisting Williams give him a run after they

i) Had Button ruled out by the CRB
ii) Had Davison ruled out by Nick Fry insisting he was more important as Honda tester >:(
iii) Coulthard decided to go to Red Bull
iv) Villeneuve and Hakkinen decided against returning after seeing Williams really wanted Button..although JV then jumped to Sauber before they were bought by BMW
V) Fisichella decided to listen to Flavio and return to Renault and was made to be Alonso's lapdog
vi) Pizzonia was Williams preferred choice
 

Il_leone

Champion Elect
As impressive as Heidfeld's record may be against the top drivers, we need to look at it realistically.

Raikkonen was in his rookie year and only did 20 odd open wheel races before he jumped into F1, and even then just finished 3 points behind Heidfeld. Again in 2002, Massa was a rookie himself and known as "wild" even then finished 3 points behind Heidfeld.

He then got beat comfortably by a driver who was in decline, got beat by Timo Glock the following year.

Went on to beat Webber and Villeneuve (surprised on how he got a drive). Bet Kubica who was in his rookie year, and got comfortably beat in the following year even though BMW went developing in his favour. Next year beats Kubica by 2 points but you could argue again the development went with his way, and Kubica was ruled out of at least a 2nd place in Australia.

He is only 34 and is not consistently getting a race seat, it must be saying something.

Is he good enough to be on the grid? Yes

But then would you have a driver that's on a decline and has limited years in the sport, or would you rather choose a youngster that can reward you later on in a season or two?

Should he have gotten the drop by Renault by mid-season? Nope, but that's a different matter.

Main point is, I don't think teams would be rushing to hire Heidfeld as the reasons above.

There are too many up and coming drivers ready to replace old guards lke Rubens, Heidfeld and Webber
 
I'm sure Renault will be given plenty of money by the FIA when they take into account their emotional boost. They're currently 5th in the title chase are they not? But the extra emotional boost bonus puts them 4th.
I suppose that's a direct dig at my "hope" and "emotional and mental boost" comment, eh? :)

I took three factors into account when I said that:

1. Mercedes aren't going to lose 4th to Renault or anyone else no matter what Renault or anyone else does, Heidfeld or no Heidfeld!

2. Renault aren't going to lose 5th. That means the FOM money is set becasue the teams get prize moneis based on their WCC placing in the standings, not by the points they score.

[I'm not sure if you were aware of such trivial things, Evil, but the FIA don't pay out any money. FOM do...so, try again! ;)]

3. Yes, Senna's 7th on the Spa grid was a boost on all possible levels that Heidfeld wasn't providing.

It's been months since a Renault had been that far up the grid and it brought out the smiles in the Renault garage.

It's just the boost the team needed after being mired in mediocrity.

Go ahead, ridicule me. It won't change a thing.
 

EvilWhippet

Podium Finisher
Il Leone
You bring up the difference in points, saying it's significant, in years where Heidfeld was beaten by is teammate. Then when it comes to years when he beat his teammate (09) you say it isn't significant and being noticed is more important. Once again you've gone back on your words to suit your opinion.

Ray, I'm beginning to think we don't agree on Heidfeld.
 

Galahad

Not a Moderator
Valued Member
Pantano, Paffett, Davidson?! Don't make me laugh. Nick was team mate to Pantano, and Giorgio's never been near an F1 car since.

It doesn't bother me that people don't like Heidfeld, but his results speak for themselves. Sadly, we are increasingly returning to the days when half the grid are chosen on the size of their wallet rather than the size of their talent.
 

Il_leone

Champion Elect
Pantano, Paffett, Davidson?! Don't make me laugh. Nick was team mate to Pantano, and Giorgio's never been near an F1 car since.

It doesn't bother me that people don't like Heidfeld, but his results speak for themselves. Sadly, we are increasingly returning to the days when half the grid are chosen on the size of their wallet rather than the size of their talent.
Pantano was the king of karts who Alonso dubbed Invincible and Rosberg had a poster of him
Panano was winning everything at junior formula and interested a lot of F1 teams Williams, Renault ,
Mclaren..unfortunately he was managed by Flavio who wanted 25% of his earnings.

The only kart title PAntano lost was to JEnson Button in 1997 the European championship

Then his personal manager was bankrupt by 9/11 on his investments.... Pantano was about to secure a drive with Jaguar for 2004 but lost out when Red Bull had $10m with Christian Klein

Only option left for F1 was Jordan who were cash strapped and needed money in the team ..and Heidfeld did not bring and poor Pantano had to get his family to pay $1m a race to basically make up for a lack of sponsors HEidfeld did not bring and they ended up remortgaging. Pantano quit before the end of the season due to the stress it had bought on his family

So it is unfair to criticise Giorgio if Eddie is asking him to bring money to the team when Heidfeld was not
he 's won everything in junior formula he's the only Gp2 champion not to do F1
after they became champ
he's a perfect example of a talent that deserves more and fair crack in F1 and was denied because of money issues so
 

Il_leone

Champion Elect
Il Leone
You bring up the difference in points, saying it's significant, in years where Heidfeld was beaten by is teammate. Then when it comes to years when he beat his teammate (09) you say it isn't significant and being noticed is more important. Once again you've gone back on your words to suit your opinion.

Ray, I'm beginning to think we don't agree on Heidfeld.
In most cases points matters especially if its going to decide if you are WOrld champion or not because utimately that is what it boils down to no matter what stats or rules you make up unless its the stupid drop your worst races scores

But in Nick Heidfeld's case it is not just me but the F1 paddock ignoring the fact he beat Kubica in 2009

let me put it to you was there anything memorable about Heidfeld in 2009 then? Even he was bemused why he was not getting many offers when BMW were pulling out that tells you something

Was there anything that made peope think he should have deserved another chance compared to Kubica?
His podium in Malaysia was down to sheer fluke by staying out and the flag happened to come out to stop the race and on count back he was 2nd

His best results come in changeable conditions and you got a series of steady races but you rarely do get a "wow " race where he was the driver of the day.

Lets remember Nick Heidfeld has been doing F1 for 10 seasons not some rookie so teams are looking for reasons to take him on over the potential long term younger drivers had
 

EvilWhippet

Podium Finisher
All of what you're saying is opinion. Writing off fantastic results because of what? You don't have the attention span to notice anything that's not on fire? Heidfeld can do fire to you know!

It didn't make you say Wow? Oh well...he outpointed one of the most highly regarded drivers in the sport. Wow! Not many people could do that...

It's very easy to write off somebody's best results by just saying "Changeable conditions...fluke..." but then that's almost every win in Jenson Button's career.

Heidfeld's f1 career may well be over. A shame, but it is what it is.
 
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