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Friday, 31 July 2009

Schumacher Applies for Driving Licence

Just had a thought as Schumacher applies for a renewal of his F1 Superlicence.

I could just picture him staring at an application form as we all have at some time in our lives. We get to the section which asks for a statement of qualifications and experience. Often the box has a comment similar to 'Please continue on a separate sheet if insufficient space'.

Then Schumacher gets out his old typewriter and hammers away patiently, trying not to sound unrealistic or to be exaggerating. Get the picture?

Wednesday, 29 July 2009

Will Schumacher Ever Return to F1?


Yes he will! The seat will be filled.

The question - 'How would he do against Hamilton and Vettel and a rejuvanated Button?' - many thought would never be answered.

Subject to the result of an intensive fitness training programme and the prognosis on the neck and back injuries he sustained in a bike accident in February, Schumacher will be battling it out in Valencia.

He will have no opportunity to familiarise himself with the F1 Ferrari until Friday practice owing to the current testing ban.

This return comes at a time when Ferrari are closing the gap and have made it back to the podium again at last in recent races.

Schumacher's return will add another ingredient to the field who have been taking points off each other following initial Brawn dominance this season and should make for a tighter closing seven races.

BMW to Quit F1


One of the most vociferous critics of cost capping in F1, BMW, have announce that this season will be their last.

Company spokesman Norbert Reithofer cited 'strategic realignment' as the reason and indicated that the company will continue to be actively involved in other motorsport series.

Maybe BMW will move to the LM series where they entered and won the Le Mans 24 hours in 1999. The team was directed by Gerhard Berger and the winning car driven by Winkelhock, Dalmas and Martini.

Massa Recovering

Excellent news is coming from several quarters, the Hungary hospital and from visitors, to the effect that Felipe Massa's eye injury may be less serious that first feared.

In addition to this he has been speaking in three languages to visitors - a good sign that his faculties are intact. All would unite in wishing his recovery may continue in this positive way...

Monday, 27 July 2009

A Model for Safer F1 Cars?

While many are looking for ways of making F1 cars safer, perhaps inspiration can be drawn from historic cars such as this 1950s F1 Vanwall.

The screen could be made from bullet resistant polycarbonate.

Drivers would remain visible to spectators but be in a safer environment.

With the low seating position of modern F1 cars a screen of similar size would be level with the top of the driver's head and give good protection from frontal impact while allowing full accessibility in the event of an accident. This is clearly preferable to a 'jet pod' full enclosure proposed by others.

Hamilton's Hopes | World Champion 2009?

Now that McLaren have developed a winning car, if Lewis Hamilton continues his Hungary form and closes out the season by winning the next 7 races he could be world champion with 89 points!

Far-fetched? If Button carries on as he is with two points per race he will end up with 84 points only. Last year Hamilton won with 98 points.

So Brawn are in for a busy three weeks of development leading up to Valencia. Button's impression is that the recent modifications have made the car less balanced.

Sunday, 26 July 2009

Motorsport Safety Concerns

The last week has highlighted the need for additional reviews of motorsport safety.

First Henry Surtees and now Felipe Massa have been victims of being hit by stray components. Currently Massa's condition is described as stable.

The incident with Alonso's car could also have resulted in a wheel striking another driver or spectator.

The FIA will investigate and report on what can be implemented in future regulation.

We have come a long way since cars regularly vaulted unbarriered banking at Brooklands or Monza. However, despite progress from straw bales to Armco, from grass run-offs to gravel traps, from cloth caps to full face helmets and HANS devices, further reflective analysis will no doubt lead to improved safety.

Hungry Hammy

Lewis Hamilton dominated proceedings in Hungary today to take a well deserved victory after waiting patiently since China last year.

McLaren have taken time to adapt to the new rules. With Raikkonen's Ferrari also on the podium it looks as if the old guard are on their way back...

Wednesday, 22 July 2009

Audi F1

In case you found the Auto Union picture enticing - here's a link to an Audi F1 in the mind of another muse...

Audi to Enter F1?


Following the encouragement for new teams to enter F1 - Audi is a conspicuous omission.

It would be excellent to see the other silver arrows last seen with Auto Union on an F1 grid.

After all they already have rear engined F1 experience!

Here's a picture to get the mind racing...

Tuesday, 21 July 2009

GP Hungary


This weekend all eyes will be on Button and Barrichello and BrawnGP.

Will Button be able to strengthen his attack on the title with another win? Will Barrichello fight back after the misunderstandings in Germany?

Either way Red Bull and a resurgent Massa will have some say in the proceedings...

Monday, 20 July 2009

Surtees

Henry Surtees was killed at Brands Hatch yesterday after being hit in the head by a wheel bouncing from a competitor's car and then hitting the barriers.

John Surtees, 7 times motor cycle world champion and F1 champion with Ferrari, was poised to see his son progress further in motorsport who was competing in F2 at the age of 18.

Our thoughts and sympathy are with John Surtees and his family at this time.

MG Live


Last weekend Silverstone hosted MG Live.

There were some good reminders of past glory years when MG not only entered Le Mans but broke the land speed record in a car piloted by Phil Hill and Stirling Moss. I was especially taken by this two seater...

Monday, 13 July 2009

Webber Wins in Germany

Congratulations to Mark Webber for his first F1 win!

Annoyed and disappointed as Rubens Barrichello was after the race, Webber's race pace was unattainable for the Brawn team. Despite a stop-go penalty, Webber won with relative ease.

Brawn had a fuel rig problem which finally relegated Barrichello to 6th but as Ross Brawn pointed out the lap times of the Red Bull cars were beyond his team's reach in the race.

Sunday, 12 July 2009

Webber Axes Pole

Mark Webber took a fine pole position in variable conditions for today's German GP at the Nurburgring.

In a first for the Aussie, he snatched it from Barrichello and Button followed up by Seb Vettel.

Friday, 10 July 2009

Goodwood


As always the Festival of Speed was an uberfest of car mania. Officially it was a celebration of Audi's achievements in motorsport this year. There were some nice Audis - the short wheelbase Quattro and the Auto Union classics. However I was especially taken by this Zagato Alfa. Can you see the influence this had over Aston Martin's noses?

Thursday, 2 July 2009

Goodwood | Festival of Speed | 2009

If you have any interest at all in motorsports, historic racing cars, or motor racing in any category then Goodwood is the place to be this weekend.

Wednesday, 1 July 2009

F1 News | Peace has Broken Out!

Have you noticed how things have gone quiet? No FIA or FOTA wrangles. We will see when we get to the Nurburgring...