Will Stevens

Who is this guy? asked Fernando Alonso. Well Fernando log on to Clip The Apex, click the link to the drivers section and I'll put you in the picture.

Will Stevens was born in Essex and was karting from a young age with some success in the Asia-Pacific Championship. He then went on the usual path of racing Eurocup and Formula Renault and whilst his results wer fairly good he was not setting the world alight. He then jumped up to WSR 3.5 in 2012 with the Carlin team and hardly set the series alight with his first year. However a move to the Straka Racing team in 2013 saw a sudden dramatic change. Stevens suddenly blossomed and whilst he did not secure any race wins all season he mixed it up with the front 3 of Magnusen, Vandorne and Felix Da Costa on a regular basis and secured 4th in the championship. His form of 2013 secured him a place in the Caterham F1 Academy and the job as test driver for the F1 team in 2014.

Stevens won the opening race of the WSR 3.5 2014 race and things seemed to be going well however, as often happens in WSR, the team and Stevens form suddenly slipped backwards. There is often a false dawn for drivers in the WSR as they tend to jump into a car that has been set up well by another driver and find themselves getting results. The problem is they haven't learnt to set the car up well themselves and as everyone else evolves around them they struggle and slip backwards. Its happened to the likes of Rossi and Sorensen and it happened to Will Stevens. To Stevens credit he managed to drag it back and won the second to last race of the season in WSR but overall his 2014 season was not a patch on his 2013.

Stevens obviously has backing although I'm not 100% sure where it comes from. His name was certainly branded around with Marussia and Caterham as someone who could bring it some cash for a Friday P1 slot (although they never quite came off) and he finally got to splash his cash to get that drive in Abu Dhabi. To Stevens credit he kept it on the road and kept within a respectable distance of his experience team mate. Despite Alonso's little moan, and lets face it Alonso moans at most drivers, he didn't really get in anyones way either. Its hardly a pedigree for a new world class driver but credit where credits due to someone who was thrown into deep water and didn't drown. Whether this is a one off or whether he has got himself on board in order to secure a drive for next season we will have to see. Will Stevens was one of the names in the 'Next British F1 Driver' thread I did a while back but it was low down the list and not one I ever expected to be writing an F1 Driver article about. Its fair to say he is more Max Chilton than Lewis Hamilton but Stevens is a nice bloke so I just don't have the heart to slam him too much. I'll give him the compliment that I can think of far worse drivers to get a chance in F1.

So did you notice him? Think we'll see him again or is this just one of those threads which will sink to the bottom of the page faster than the Titanic?
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If he does get back into F1 again, it's going to be a while, I think. I was impressed by his improvement over the race weekend at Abu Dhabi. I do wish he'd had one more race in the season, just to see if that improvement was all we were going to see, or to see if he had more in him. Unfortunately, unless he does something spectacular elsewhere, I think that might have been his one and only chance.
Am I right in thinking that at the time Alonso was gesticulating about Stevens's car not moving out of his way they were racing for pisition? In which case, if I were driving in possibly my only F1 race I'd have been fighting tooth and nail to keep him behind.
Hence why I said Alonso moans about most drivers.

Not to be cynical but the "claiming the new boy is getting in the way in order to apply pressure for him to fight less" is a tactic used far too much by the top end drivers in F1 now days. Ask KMag and he'll tell you all about it. Not that its just Fernando that does this by the way.

So yes Will Stevens can proudly tell his grandkids he fought for position with Fernando Alonso and did so well that Alonso had to complain on the radio about it.
Actually I was under the impression Alonso was complaining about his lack of power when the Caterham started getting away from him on the main straight when they were alongside, and the Ferari pit misunderstood him.

A bit like when Hamilton a few years ago said on the radio "I've been overtaken by a Williams!".
Oh right. Incidentally although it might be slightly off-topic here and has already been discussed elsewhere it's becoming increasingly difficult not to take radio communications with a large pinch of salt.

If there's one thing we learned after Mona it's the extent to which not just radio messages but selected scenes from staff on the pit-wall are edited and packaged, to give an angle. Like that scene of Toto Wolf smiling broadly immediately after Rosberg missed the chicane. A scene which was actually filmed much earlier.

Anyway like I said it's a bit off-topic on here...

EDIT ...which to think of it isn't really that much off-topic seeing as though we don't know when that message from Alonso was uttered , which bit of on-track action it referred to or even whether it was shown on the coverage.
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I'd bet a pretty penny it was said whilst he was trying to overtake Stevens though. Unless by 'new boy' Ferrari meant Vettel.

Considering the evidence I stand by my theory on the radio call I said earlier.
It seemed to me that Alonso was complaining to the team about the lack of straight line speed. You might well be inclined to think that a Ferrari with DRS would be faster than a Caterham on a straight.
I will give my take on the posts above after I get my sobriery back - whenever that may be - but that'll be on the Alonso thread, as this all getting a tad off-topic on here?...
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