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Sunday, 26 September 2010

Singapore Results | Hamilton Second DNF

F1 News from Singapore:-

Well it did not quite finish line astern...

Webber drove a hard race to come home third instead of Hamilton.  Hamilton tangled with Webber and had a nul points, just as at Monza.

Button held station from the grid in fourth and Rosberg slotted in fifth, filling the spot vacated by Webber.

Barrichello held his 6th place gridspot.  Michael Schumacher languished in 13th.

Massa blasted from last to tenth.

The standings now are Webber 202 - Alonso 191 - Hamilton 182 - Vettel 181 - Button - 177.
Alonso is the man on form and now has four wins, equalling Webber.  The next three are difficult to separate.  Had Hamilton avoided Massa at Monza and Webber here today he would likely be leading the championship by a few points.  As it is he is still within striking distance but relying on Alonso and Webber to miss a beat sometime in the next four races.

F1 Top Five at Singapore

Ferrari's Fernando Alonso edged out Sebastian Vettel for the starting order in today's Singapore GP.

They were followed by Hamilton-Button-Webber in that order.

There are 125 points available for the winner of the remaining five races.

The current order in the drivers championship is Webber-Hamilton-Alonso-Button-Vettel.

The F1 points system gives 25 points to the winner then 18-15-12-10-8-6-4-2-1.

If they finish in grid order today, the standings will be Webber 197 - Hamilton 197 - Alonso 191 - Vettel -181 - Button 177.

This is unlikely of course but a review of  the points system is a good indicator of current form and its effects.

Based on the last race, the two McLaren's will out-drag the front row with Button leading Hamilton after the first bend.  Hamilton will be slightly nervous after his accident with Massa at Monza on lap one.  However Massa starts at the back of the grid in Singapore after gearbox problems so is well out of the way.

Picture credit: www.Ferrari.com

Wednesday, 22 September 2010

Schumacher Neck

According to a report in mdr.de, Schumacher has been out on his bike again at the Sachsenring.

See newsldn.com.

Monday, 13 September 2010

Alo Alo Alo

Or 'Ole ole ole' as they must be saying in Spain this morning.

Fernando Alonso put in a fine performance to take victory in his first Italian Grand Prix for Ferrari at Monza 2010.

After Jenson Button beat him to the first corner, Alonso had to focus hard to regain the lead he took with his pole position.

Webber has regained his championship lead with his sixth place after Hamilton was overly aggressive in trying to pass Massa on lap one and damaged his car, retiring ignominiously into the gravel trap with his front right wheel flapping like a sail.

Alonso now takes his place behind Hamilton and Webber with 166 points to Hamilton's 182 and Webber's 187.  Button is now one point behind Alonso with Vettel two points behind Button.

This is one of the closest title fights in F1 history.

Saturday, 11 September 2010

Hamilton Wings It

Lewis Hamilton regretted his decision to run a low downforce rear wing.  He described the car after qualifying only fifth as  'sliding everywhere'.  He said he had no idea how things would go tomorrow.

Meanwhile Jenson Button took his first front row of the season alongside Alonso on pole.

Massa came in third and Webber fourth.

Button's larger wing enabled him to brake later and corner at higher speeds.

This more than offset the greater drag on the straights.

Alonso was delighted with his pole in front of the tifosi.

Friday, 10 September 2010

Monza Practice

In free practice today, Red Bull surprised yet again with their pace.

In first practice Button set the fastest time but in second practice, Sebastian Vettel was quickest from the two Ferraris of Alonso and Massa.  Hamilton, Button and Webber completed the top five times.

Many people were expecting Monza to be a circuit where the Red Bull strengths would not show through and that the out and out speed of the McLaren would dominate.

Tomorrow will tell of course but so far, at least in Vettel's hands, Adrian Newey and team seem to have produced an optimum set up for this low downforce circuit.

Hamilton favoured a smaller rear wing than Button.  Button's larger wing can run in low drag with the F-Duct while giving greater downforce where needed.

Wednesday, 8 September 2010

Order a Ferrari | Team Orders | F1 News

Ferrari are well known for their waiting lists on new orders.  Team orders are seemingly something different.

In the World Motorsport Council hearing today, Ferrari have escaped further punishment for instructing Felipe Massa to listen to the comment at the German Grand Prix that Fernando Alonso was 'faster than you'.

Massa's engineer, Rob Smedley,  gave the above thinly coded message, prompting Ferrari to be fined for a breach of the rules banning team orders.

Many expected points to be deducted from the drivers and the team and possibly a further fine imposed.

However this has not been the case.  The 100,000 dollars already imposed will be the limit.

From a racing viewpoint, this decision keeps Alonso in the title race.

Monza this weekend is pivotal for Ferrari, not only as their home race but to act as a benchmark for the rest of the season.

The FIA have stated that the team orders rule will shortly be further clarified.

Sunday, 5 September 2010

Goodwood 2010

September 16-19 will bring the excellent Revival meeting back to Goodwood.

If ever you doubted the joys of attending the event - take a look at the video below...
What a day out we had!




F1 Aerodynamics

If you are interested in F1 aerodynamics,  this link is a good one to look at.

The article is very well written and illustrated and a good example of Craig Scarborough's work.  I only came across it today after researching general F1 aero issues but is very good technical journalism.

Red Bull Wing Flex

We have now had collisions between, Vettel and Webber in Turkey, Webber and Kovalainen in Valencia and Vettel and Button at Spa.  Each involves Red Bull F1 cars of course.  Is that relevant?

The latest accident has caused many to write that a flexing, twisting wing caused or contributed to the accident at Spa, Belgium.

It is true that video footage shows the wing writhing like a surf board on a wave immediately prior to Vettel losing control.

The question is was this the cause of the accident?

Here are the events:-

Vettel's wing flexed as he tried to pull out of Button's slipstream.  

Vettel lost control as his wing twisted right then left.

Vettel hit Button's radiator, putting him out of the race.

A relatively small, soft front wing behind a large rear wing is going to create aerodynamic instability.  This is unavoidable.

What next then?:  When the new and revised (again) tests have been carried out at Spa, discuss and create rules with the specific object of facilitating safe and simple overtaking.  The debate over what caused the Spa accident will inevitably remain inconclusive.  All three accidents referred to above involved braking,  changes of direction and overtaking moves at very close quarters.

The rules should not be so obtuse that the entire field is unhappy about their interpretation.  Aerodynamics should not take the ascendancy of basic racing.

Saturday, 4 September 2010

Vettel Takes Out Button

I have just watched this bbc video

Not Jake Humphrey and Martin Brundle driving to Spa (also very entertaining however) but the one of the Vettel - Button collision at Spa.

For some strange reason it reminded me of the Senna/Prost collisions and the Hill/Schumacher one.

It all looked so incredibly deliberate.  Vettel brakes, changes direction and then appears to steer his car, aiming it straight and Button's radiator thereby putting him out of the race and possibly the championship.  Watch it again and imagine he meant it, just to adjust your critical eye.  Good effort wasn't it?  Now imagine this was the last race of the season and Vettel was leading the championship in front of Button.

Should this be treated like the Nelson Piquet move that gave Alonso the win?  It it a case of weird team orders to allow Webber to hold position in the championship?  Was Vettel paid to help Hamilton retake the championship lead and inhibit Button's chances of retaining the title.  Of course not, this is rubbish of course - but maybe it illustrates the difficulty stewards face when adjudging 'sporting scandals'.  The circumstances often look identical to all intents and pruposes. What they are judging is intent and motive not just the events themselves.

Did the Pakistani bowlers intend to cross the line and create a no ball?  Did Piquet intend to orchestrate Alonso's win.  Did Schumacher really mean to nobble Hill's car?

The actual circumstances of each incident are radically different and yet, viewed on a monitor vaguely similar.

Who would want to be a sports judge, steward or referee?