May 06, 2024

Do You Want The Applause Now Or Will It Wait?

So we're going to be left with one tyre supplier? And it's going to be put out to a contract so the FIA can get the best deal (ie will you make them exactly like we want them so they look slick but feel like racing on the current 16 groove tyres?). That'll be a fun decision. Both tyre companies have PR spoken and it amounts to "Bridgestone welcomes the healthy competition of working with other tyre manufacturers," and from Michelin: "The competition and comparison between rival manufacturers has always been the best solution for developing good tyres and to ensure technological advances."

So they think that being forced to make faster and faster tyres is a good idea. Pity everyone else in the world thinks that nice grippy tyres and consistency over all the teams is better for racing.

Of course everyone wil be up in arms if Bridgestone get the contract (apart from possibly the Tifosi) and Michelin will be okay as long as it doesn't rain. But hold on a minute...

...there are more than two tyre companies in the world, as Minardi proved during testing a few winters ago. May we respectfully point out another option to the FIA. I'm sure they'd be more than happy to have the contract - they're already fitting out the International F3000 cars and the FIA Thoroughbred Grand Prix Series for ex Fun 1 cars.

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May 05, 2024

Enzo Trained Luca Well

Modern day Fun 1 watchers will be horrified with the idea that Mr Mosley went to Ferrari to discuss the new ideas he had before going to the full meeting at Monaco. We'll soon hear all about The Red Team wrote the new regs!

Students of Fun 1 History will of course, realise that Mr Mosely is just doing what Ballastere never fully realised in the F1CA FOCA wars of the 70s and 80s. If you thought the pin pricks this year were bad you really need to find out why only Tyrell and Ferrari drove at Imola 1982 and everyone else stayed at home to watch Villeneuve and Pironi.

In those days there were the Manufacturers (eg Renault) and the Independents (Williams et al). And they fought tooth and nail over everything. Skirts on cars, Fuel Cocktails, water cooled brakes, suction fans. But one team never declared sides, and decided on issue as it saw fit. One week they supported at F1CA idea, the next their full weight was behind FOCA.

This team was the balance of power, and by ensuing it was neither with one side or the other, it could influence everything to their best effect. Because without them on board, a breakway championship would fail.

That Enzo Ferrari was a good poker player...

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May 01, 2024

10 Years After

Autosport front cover, 5 May 1994 Today is the tenth anniversary of Ayrton Senna's death at Imola. So what has happened in Formula 1? Are the cars safer, slower, is the driving cleaner? Yes, No and definitely not - Michael's outrageous punting off of JPM at Imola is graphic evidence of how low F1 driver standards have sunk in the past decade.

Continue reading "10 Years After"
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April 28, 2024

David and the Dominos

He's the first piece. The one that Roy Castle and Norris McWhirter would push over to start the entire chain that is the the 2005 Driver Market.

Once David 'The Chin' Coulthard decides where to drive next year, we can really start to speculate where everyone will end up. Watching him moveto Jaguar would mean that Webber is definilty going (probably to Renault, maybe Williams). A move to Toyota to meet up another ex-McLaren driver in Panis would effectivly steal the one seat that appears available to Schumie Lite. There might even be a suprising return to Williams if you want really long odds. Or you cold all start praying that his manager decides he needs a new right hand man in the ITV commentary box and we can say gooooooooooooo-odbye to James "Mega" Allen.

Letís make the best of the situation, Before I finally go insane. Please donít say weíll never find a way, And tell me all my loveís in vain. It's my year.

There is, of course, one big stunt in the middle of the domino layout that might screw everything up. It's called Mrs Schumacher. If her husband decides that 17 wins from 17 is a good point to retire (and he's only a chocolate Button away from that) then there'll be one almighty sprint to the Red motor home.And Keke Rosberg might be pushing his young Finnish charger faster than a speeding Mercedes.

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April 27, 2024

That's What We Want...

juanpablobeaker.jpgMr Frank and Mr Patrick are more than happy with Monty's little coming together on lap one of Imola. In their words: "Ten out of ten for trying, and I'm glad he got away with it, but it's not fair to say that it was all Michael. You take a risk when you go round the outside.Ē Strangely, Mr Frank and Mr Patrick haven't metioned Schumie Lite's stellar performance at Imola.

You have to bear in mind Monty's not happy with the car, the speed (or lack thereof) and everything else that's not going Williams way. So he's really having to manhandle it around the track and take whatever he's given from the boffins. Perhaps the whole thing is just a bit too experimental for his tastes?

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April 26, 2024

Eyes Down For Max's Full House

It's a simple game. The FIA, through Max Mosley, wants to ensure four rules are in place for Formula 1. Now most normal people would ask if these four things can be done. Of course, Fun-1 isn't normal, and something simple like "asking" is frowned upon. Just ask Paul Stoddart.

So the FIA let everyone know they are going to apply twenty rule changes (or whatever the number is, even that's up for interpretation),and we'll talk about it at Monaco. Now all the team owners have to gamble on what the real four rules are and twist them to suit their team and disadvantage any other red team. Get the gamble wrong and you'llbe wasting effort on a rule change that's scheduled for the drop. Of course if you can get another team to waste effort on that rule,you can focus on one that's definitly staying.

There are many definitions of fun in Fun-1.

So what do we have coming out the starting gate? Here's just some of the fun choices to think about.

Single Tyre Supplier: Obvious simple to implement, so could be a bluff. But it will stop lap times tumbling, and give a degree of speed reduction through harder compounds. So it could be a double bluff. Don't focus too much on this one. But hold on...

No Tyre Changes (Except for accidents) during a race: Now this tallies nicely into a single tyre supplier running a hard compund. But then you could easily drop the single tyre supplier rule and keep this one here. So will you put some effort into tweaking this rule?

Testing will be limited by miles completed. This is going to get a massive fight from the top teams as they decide on the number of miles needed to perfect their car on the track outside the factory doors, while making sure the other teams don't have sufficient time to sort out their cars. It's great this one, the top teams will be in a frenzy working out permutations, while the little teams (where test drives are little more than a run down to the corner shop) will be wanting to talk about other, more pressing issues for them. Which will drive them into a frenzy.

See how everyone starts getting at everyone else? And where are the FIA (and the FOA)? Calmly waiting to walk in and say "how about we stop all this debate and keep just these four..."

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San Marino Grand Prix

It was a bit boring really. M. Schumacher won, Button Second. 22 Ran.

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April 22, 2024

Tilke Rebuilds Nurburgring?

F1 Magazine, F1 Racing, is always a good way to catch the latest PR spin - and occasionnaly turning up a few gems. This month sees a whole load of sensible people choosing their favourite corners, and then handing this scalectrix kit to Master Dragster Racing Course Designer Herman Tilke. With 17 'complexs of corners' including the Corkscrew, the Parabolica, Eau Rouge and that one in Japan where Ayrton punted Alain off the road, he came up with a pretty nice circuit. And this quote about the 'perfect' circuit that's in his head:

"If I could build that," he smiles wistfully, "it would be even longer, with even more corners..."

Dare we say 14.16 miles long? With 173 corners? Herman my man, I've the perfect name for this 'ultimate' racing track.

The Nordschleife.

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