Wednesday, September 21, 2016

CONCLUSIONS FROM THE SINGAPORE GP

Well that not much of a race for me. I switched off halfway as there was no point watching Lewis having to manage his brakes all the way and can't attack.

This article reproduced from Planet F1. Original article can be found here.

One has to feel for Nico Rosberg. He may have taken the lead in the Championship, but his great performances are never extolled like Lewis Hamilton’s. At the same time, his failings are prodded, poked, studied, and arguably held against him.

There was no failing at Singapore in 2016, though. From his outstanding pole lap – more than half a second clear of his nearest challenger – to his perfect race, this was a performance worthy of nothing but praise.

Toto Wolff claimed, however, that some perspective was required as Hamilton’s woes in FP2 had set back his race preparations.

Would Rosberg have received the same sympathy had such bad luck befallen him? Let’s be clear that there is no suggestion of conspiracy against Rosberg, but the answer is “no”. And Rosberg knows that there is only one way to change that, and that is to defend his Championship lead and claim his first title.

The Singapore slinger

Who would you give this title to? Daniel Ricciardo or Max Verstappen? Both made good cases for themselves at Marina Bay.

Ricciardo’s charge after the last round of pit stops was wonderful to watch – one might even feel a bit of nostalgia and wished to have heard Murray Walker squawking in delight as the Red Bull chased down Rosberg’s Silver Arrow.

Alas for the Aussie, the Red Bull lacked the wings to catch the Mercedes. Ricciardo must wait then to exorcise the ghosts of Monaco and claim a first win of 2016.

In qualifying Martin Brundle suggested that Ricciardo was in the form of his life. With many pundits suggesting that Red Bull could be the team to beat when the new regulations are introduced in 2017, Ricciardo shouldn’t have to wait long before converting his sensational form into victories.

That said, if Rosberg and Ricciardo are the men in form; it is Verstappen who remains F1’s great entertainer. In his memorable battle with Daniil Kvyat, Verstappen seemed to find pieces of track that other drivers wouldn’t see, let alone use; and place his car in spaces that seemed too small for a F1 car.

The last cut is the deepest

Hamilton has his Mercedes team to thank for salvaging a podium after he locked up and Kimi Raikkonen had swept past his W07 to claim third.

By undercutting the Finn in the last round of stops, Hamilton was able to get back past the Ferrari to limit the damage and claim third after enduring a scrappy weekend. The extra points will, of course, prove crucial as the season enters the run-in.

For Raikkonen and Ferrari, Mercedes’ smart strategic play represents not only a disappointing Singapore race, but was something of a microcosm of a disappointing season for the Scuderia.

Fans might remember Sebastian Vettel’s remarkable podium in Abu Dhabi four years ago, when he charged through the field after starting at the back of the grid.

Although there was no top-three finish in Singapore, the four-time Champion showed patience and excellent race craft to make his way up to a commendable fifth after a mechanical problem blighted his qualifying and forced him to start last.

This fine recovery drive, however, is scant consolation to man who won here a year ago and who instead of fighting for the title finds himself 120 points behind Rosberg with a maximum of 150 points left on the table in 2016.

A word for Alonso, Kvyat and K Mag

McLaren’s improved form is not yet a revival, but the men from Woking are getting closer to the type of performance expected from a team of McLaren’s status.

While Kvyat would have taken little joy from being overtaken by Verstappen – the teenager who took his seat at Red Bull – he will be happy to have claimed ninth and his first points in five races.

Kevin Magnussen, meanwhile, took the flag in tenth to earn his and Renault’s first points since the Russian Grand Prix on May 1.

Good results they are, neither Kvyat not Magnussen are assured seats in 2017. Every point helps, though more so for Magnussen than Kvyat, with the Russian widely tipped to be out of the formula come November 27.

Marshal madness

Seeing a marshall scurrying to safety mere metres from a pack of almost two dozen ferocious F1 cars brings back terrifying memories of the 1977 South African Grand Prix.

In that fateful race, Shadow driver Tom Pryce was killed when his car struck a marshal while travelling at 270kph.

With this in mind, we expect better from Singapore and from F1.

Richard F Rose

If you enjoyed this posting, please do share it with your network so more people can enjoy it as well. Also, check out my Formula 1 inspired designs at my online shops:

1. Hamilton Tees (fixed designs) is my online shop where you can get my Lewis Hamilton inspired designs printed on many different types of t-shirts and hoodies.
Link - http://shop.spreadshirt.com/hamiltontees/

2. Lewis Hamilton T-Shirt (design your own) is a designer shop where you can get the same designs on many more products - not just t-shirts but trousers, baby bibs, mugs, phone cases, whatever is available. You can adjust the size and location of the designs, add text and customize it exactly as you see fit.
Link - http://lewishamiltontshirt.spreadshirt.com/

3. Lewis Hamilton Collection (fixed designs) is my fixed design shop on Redbubble where most of the phone cases are and many other products.
Link - http://www.redbubble.com/people/akhnsx/collections/504049-lewis-hamilton-collection

Support Lewis this season by owning this collection. Thank you for your support. May Lewis win his fourth world title in 2016. We win and lose together. Go Lewis!

Here is a sample.


Thursday, September 15, 2016

SINGAPORE GP 2016 PREVIEW

The Singapore Grand Prix is a motor race on the calendar of the FIA Formula One World Championship. The event takes place in Singapore on the Marina Bay Street Circuit and was the inaugural F1 night race and the first street circuit in Asia. Spaniard Fernando Alonso won the first edition of the grand prix, driving for the Renault F1 team. The Singapore Grand Prix will remain on the F1 calendar through at least 2017, after race organizers signed a contract extension with Formula One Management on the eve of the 2012 event.

Singapore’s street race under night lights has been a dazzling addition to the calendar though the track is more a test of endurance than skill. It boasts 23 turns which are almost all slow and the majority of them are right-angled. Like Baku, Sochi and – of course – Monaco, this is more a tour bus route than a track.

That isn’t to say it can’t catch drivers out. The combination of frequent bumps and braking zones, unforgiving walls and energy-sapping humidity make this one of the toughest races on the calendar along with Malaysia. And for the first time this year drivers will have to contend with both those races within two weeks of each other.

The longest race in the F1 calendar at almost two hours, one of the hardest on brakes, with a 100% record of a safety car, a long slow pit stop and a choice of the softest tyres which cannot do the 308km marathon in one stop, the Singapore Grand Prix is always a strategy challenge.

TRACK CHARACTERISTICS

Track Length : 5.073 kilometres.
Race Distance : 61 laps (309.316 kilometres).
Corners : 23 corners in total.
Aerodynamic Setup : High downforce.
Top Speed : 305km/h (with Drag Reduction System active on rear wing) – 290km/h without.
Full Throttle : 45.5% of the lap time (low).
Time Spent Braking : 21% of lap.
Number Of Brake Zones : 16.
Brake Wear : Very high. Toughest race of season for brakes as no cooling opportunities.
Total Time Needed For Pit stop : 29 seconds (very high).
Lap Record : 1:48.574 - S Vettel (2013).

WEATHER FORECAST

Weather conditions throughout the Singapore Grand Prix week will be predominately dictated by the presence of the SouthWest monsoon, according to UBIMET, official meteorological service provider to the FIA. For the majority of the week the mornings will begin mostly dry and sunny with cloud building rapidly to thundery showers between late morning and early afternoon.

As is common in the tropics, these showers may be heavy at times accompanied with the hazard of strong rain and gusty winds. The highest temperatures will range from 30 to 34 degrees. Evenings and nights will remain mostly dry with temperatures not below 25 degrees. As the race, practice and qualifying sessions take place after sunset, the chance of dry weather conditions is high. However, thundery showers cannot be excluded completely.

DRS

The night race featured just one zone in 2011 and 2012, but moved to two from 2013; the first area is situated on the long stretch from Turns 5 to 7, known as Raffles Boulevard, with the second on the start-finish straight.

Separate detection points control the two zones – the first just after Turn 4 and the second before Turn 22.


TYRES

For the only true night race of the calendar, held on the stunning streets of Singapore, Pirelli's P Zero Purple ultrasoft tyres make a return for the first race since Austria, alongside the supersoft and soft. The three softest tyres in the P Zero range have been selected to cater for the unique demands of the Marina Bay street circuit: a long lap, fluctuating track temperatures, and a physically demanding race for both drivers and cars. With the barriers so close to the side of the track, no mistakes go unpunished during this two-hour marathon held in humid conditions.

Singapore has the highest number of corners of any circuit all year (23) but is the second-slowest lap after Monaco: placing demands on tyres in terms of cornering, braking and traction. The surface is typically bumpy, also with street furniture such as painted lines and manholes. Being run at night, track temperatures don't evolve in the usual way seen at a daytime race.

Ambient temperatures still remain high though, meaning drivers have to manage degradation. A long race and high safety car probability open up many different tyre strategy opportunities. Low downforce means all the mechanical grip comes from tyres: the left-rear works hardest. Pit stop time is long due to a lower speed limit and long pit lane: a key strategic consideration. Ferrari has gone for the most aggressive tyre choice, with a maximum allocation of ultrasoft. Following some minor changes to the circuit in 2015, there are no big alterations this year.


Yellow soft: the hardest set available this weekend, capable of long stints at Marina Bay.
Red supersoft: a versatile compound, which proved to be a key element of last year's race.
Purple ultrasoft: designed to offer a considerable pace advantage: will be used in qualifying.

SAFETY CAR

Because the track is lined with walls, making it difficult for marshals to clear debris, the chance of a Safety Car at Singapore is 100% ! There has been at least one Safety Car at every Singapore GP so far with an average of 6 laps spent under Safety Car.

CONCLUSION

Mercedes has had it pretty much its own way this season, apart from a blip in Spain, where the drivers hit each other on the opening lap. This weekend’s Singapore Grand Prix offers a chance for their rivals to take a win, with Red Bull and Ferrari looking to exploit any weakness in the Mercedes weekend.

Red Bull’s car should be ideally suited to the 5km Marina Bay circuit, while Ferrari won the race last year with Sebastian Vettel and benefits from an updated engine from the last race in Monza. Vettel is also a Singapore specialist with four wins and three poles. Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo finished second last season at the F1 Night race and after his stunning performance in Monaco with pole and what should have been a race win, but for a botched strategy and pit stop, he starts as many people’s favourite for the event. But the execution will have to be perfect.

If you enjoyed this posting, please do share it with your network so more people can enjoy it as well. Also, check out my Formula 1 inspired designs at my online shops:

1. Hamilton Tees (fixed designs) is my online shop where you can get my Lewis Hamilton inspired designs printed on many different types of t-shirts and hoodies.
Link - http://shop.spreadshirt.com/hamiltontees/

2. Lewis Hamilton T-Shirt (design your own) is a designer shop where you can get the same designs on many more products - not just t-shirts but trousers, baby bibs, mugs, phone cases, whatever is available. You can adjust the size and location of the designs, add text and customize it exactly as you see fit.
Link - http://lewishamiltontshirt.spreadshirt.com/

3. Lewis Hamilton Collection (fixed designs) is my fixed design shop on Redbubble where most of the phone cases are and many other products.
Link - http://www.redbubble.com/people/akhnsx/collections/504049-lewis-hamilton-collection

Support Lewis this season by owning this collection. Thank you for your support. May Lewis win his fourth world title in 2016. We win and lose together. Go Lewis!

Here is a sample.


Tuesday, September 6, 2016

CONCLUSIONS FROM THE ITALIAN GP 2016

Enjoyed the Italian GP? I didn't. A bad start from Lewis handed the race to Rosberg. "Pure class"? I disagree but I still will post this article just so that we can see at the end of the season how deluded Rosberg was. Of course he has a chance at the title but on pure pace and skills, Lewis wins hands down. Only luck can win it for Rosberg.

This article was written by Michelle Foster of PlanetF1. The original article can be found here.

Pure class from Nico Rosberg at a grand prix that proved that speed doesn’t guarantee good racing.

Rosberg’s got something
It was a classy win for Nico Rosberg as he raced unchallenged to his maiden Italian Grand Prix win.

Detractors will say it was an easy one, made uncomplicated by Lewis Hamilton’s start misfortunes, but Rosberg still did had to do the work.

He still had to lay down the fast laps, build a lead over the Ferraris – and over Hamilton by more than a second per lap in the opening stage – and he had to maintain his pace in the latter stages to keep his team-mate at bay and quash any hope that Hamilton may have had that he would be able to close up.

Sunday’s triumph not only saw Rosberg slash Hamilton’s lead to just two points, it also bolstered his belief that maybe he has a genuine chance at this year’s World title.

It was a 21st victory for Rosberg, moving him ahead of Mika Hakkinen and up to 14th on the all-time list. It was his 50th Formula 1 podium and his seventh win of this championship, beating his tally of six from 2015.

Even the best get it wrong
First to sixth in the space of a few metres, Lewis Hamilton initially told Mercedes that he had made a mistake off the line, only for Mercedes to inform him at the post-race debrief that it was not a driver error.

Rather, the team told him, it was yet another issue with the clutch, a problem that has caught out both drivers several times this season.

Mercedes have dominated Formula 1 for the past two-and-a-half years as they have managed to get everything right; the engine, the chassis, the drivers. Everything but the clutch that is.

“They’ll be working very hard,” Hamilton said of the issue. “It’s not a quick fix, something you can change for the next race. We have made improvements, so we have seen more consistent, better starts, but we are still caught out by the random variation that we have from one weekend to the other.”

Speed does not guarantee epic racing
Monza is Formula 1’s fastest grand prix. On Sunday, Rosberg covered the 306.72 kilometres in one hour, 17 minutes, and 28.089 seconds.

Fernando Alonso clocked the day’s fastest lap time of 1:25.340 with an average speed of 244.373kph.

And yet it was rather boring.

Rosberg went unchallenged at the front, Lewis Hamilton and the Ferraris changed positions through pitstop strategies, which also played a huge role in the rest of the top ten.

Were it not for Daniel Ricciardo’s pass on Valtteri Bottas, where he came from a long way behind with his “DRS open, and head tucked” to pass the Williams at the first chicane, there would be very little overtaking action of consequence to speak of.

It is a concern that many have for next year’s new regulations. Formula 1 may be taking steps to make the cars five seconds per lap faster, but that just means the snooze fest will be over faster.

A glimmer of hope for Ferrari
Sebastian Vettel gave Ferrari and their tifosi something to celebrate on Sunday as he joined the Mercedes drivers on the podium at the Scuderia’s home grand prix.

It was a good result for Ferrari, who have fallen behind Red Bull Racing in recent weeks, and was made even more so by Kimi Raikkonen fourth on the day.

But, if you look a bit closer, Sunday’s result was rather concerning.

Vettel and Raikkonen were dropped by Rosberg in the opening stint despite being on supersoft tyres to the German’s softs.

Even when the Mercedes driver switched to the medium tyres, and they were running supersofts and softs, they were unable to close the gap. Nor were they able to keep Hamilton, who had the same tyre strategy as his team-mate, behind them.

Second best on the day, but a very distant second.

Formula 1 is getting younger and younger
36-year-old Jenson Button is stepping aside for 24-year-old Stoffel Vandoorne while 35-year-old Felipe Massa is also out, reportedly making way for 18-year-old Lance Stroll.

While not many will argue that Vandoorne, who came through Renault Formula 3.5 and GP2, has done the hard yards to secure his place on the grid, Stroll is yet another example of Formula 1 teams being willing to gamble on young talent.

Should the Canadian sign as Massa’s replacement, he will be the latest teenager on the grid.

But like the other two, Esteban Ocon and Max Verstappen, Stroll has begun to make a name for himself in the European F3 Championship, which he is currently leading.

Elder statesmen out, barely old enough to shave in.

Michelle Foster

If you enjoyed this posting, please do share it with your network so more people can enjoy it as well. Also, check out my Formula 1 inspired designs at my online shops:

1. Hamilton Tees (fixed designs) is my online shop where you can get my Lewis Hamilton inspired designs printed on many different types of t-shirts and hoodies.
Link - http://shop.spreadshirt.com/hamiltontees/

2. Lewis Hamilton T-Shirt (design your own) is a designer shop where you can get the same designs on many more products - not just t-shirts but trousers, baby bibs, mugs, phone cases, whatever is available. You can adjust the size and location of the designs, add text and customize it exactly as you see fit.
Link - http://lewishamiltontshirt.spreadshirt.com/

3. Lewis Hamilton Collection (fixed designs) is my fixed design shop on Redbubble where most of the phone cases are and many other products.
Link - http://www.redbubble.com/people/akhnsx/collections/504049-lewis-hamilton-collection

Support Lewis this season by owning this collection. Thank you for your support. May Lewis win his fourth world title in 2016. We win and lose together. Go Lewis!

Here is a sample.


Friday, September 2, 2016

ITALIAN GP 2016 PREVIEW

Formula 1 heads to the 'Temple of Speed' at Monza this weekend for an Italian Grand Prix where fast laps and low downforce will be key talking points.

The Autodromo Nazionale Monza is one of the most iconic racetracks on the Formula 1 calendar. It was built in 1922 and has staged more world championship grands prix than any other circuit in the world. Only once, in 1980, has the circuit not been on the F1 calendar.

Up until the early ’60s, racing took place on a fearsome six-mile oval. But the death of Wolfgang von Trips and 15 spectators in the 1961 Italian Grand Prix resulted in future races taking place on a shorter road course, with the last true ‘slipstreaming’ battle taking place in 1971, after which chicanes were installed to slow the cars.

The track is still the fastest in Formula 1, with today’s cars exceeding 200mph (322km/h) on four occasions around the lap. The average speed is in excess of 150mph (241km/h), so the teams use one-off low-downforce aerodynamic packages to maximise straight-line speed. However, braking stability is important: there are a total of six braking events around the lap and on two occasions the cars slow from 200mph (322km/h) to 50mph (80km/h) in just two seconds. Further it needs a good mechanical configuration of suspension to work well over the kerbs, while also needing strong power and a reliable hybrid system because it is full throttle for 69 percent of the lap.

TRACK CHARACTERISTICS

Track Length : 5.793 kilometres.
Race distance : 53 laps (306.72 kilometres).
Corners : 11 corners in total.
Average Speed : 247km/h.
Aerodynamic Setup : Low downforce.
Top speed : 360km/h (with Drag Reduction System active on rear wing).
Full Throttle : 74% of the lap (high).
Time Spent Braking : 11% of lap.
Number Of Brake Zones : 6.
Brake Wear : High.
Total Time Needed For Pit Stop (at 80km/h) : 25 seconds (ave/high).
Lap record : 1:21.046 Rubens Barrichello, Ferrari, 2004.

Last five winners in Italy:
2015: Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes)
2014: Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes)
2013: Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull)
2012: Lewis Hamilton (McLaren)
2011: Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull)

WEATHER FORECAST

Following the unusually high temperatures seen at Spa another weekend of warm temperatures are forecast at Monza. However the prospects of any rain on Sunday are receding.

The first practice session on Friday will be run under sunny skies in temperatures of around 25C. This will rise towards 30C in time for the second session later that day and there is a risk of thunderstorms developing later on.

Saturday’s weather will be more settled and cloudier, but with temperatures still reaching as high as 28C. The Italian Grand Prix is set to be run in similar warm and dry conditions. At present there is a chance of a small amount of rain later in the day, but at present it is not expected to affect the race.

TYRES

Pirelli has chosen the medium, soft and (for the first time) supersoft tyres at Monza: the fourth consecutive race where this selection is being used.

While average speeds are high, cornering speeds are reasonably low, minimising tyre wear. This means that some teams could aim for a one-stop strategy. Heavy longitudinal forces act on tyres, especially under braking and traction in the two chicanes. The drivers tend to hit the famous kerbs at Monza hard, which further tests the tyre structure. Parabolica and Curva Grande are particularly challenging, as they are long corners putting plenty of energy through the tyres. Low downforce means braking and acceleration is tricky: drivers must try to avoid wheelspin.

White medium: a mandatory set that will be important for the race if using a one-stop strategy.
Yellow soft: again a mandatory set, could come into play for a two-stop strategy in particular.
Red supersoft: mandatory in qualifying; most of the top 10 are very likely to start on this tyre.

DRS

There are two DRS zones; the first is on the start-finish straight and the second on the approach to Turn Eight, the Ascari chicane. But overtaking remains difficult because the impact of DRS is less at Monza than at other racetracks, due to the small rear wings being used by the cars. In fact, statistically, pole position is more important at Monza than it is at Monaco.


SAFETY CAR

The chance of a safety car at Monza is statistically very low at 43% and 0.4 Safety Cars per race. There was however a Safety car three years in a row recently from 2007- 9.

CONCLUSION

With Lewis Hamilton’s power unit stock replenished and both Mercedes drivers having taken six wins each, the run in for the 2016 drivers title effectively begins here, with a nine point advantage for Hamilton.

Hamilton has has taken both victories for Mercedes at this venue in the V6 era, with Nico Rosberg so far unable to challenge the Briton. This race was a turning point in the championship in 2015 as Hamilton took a lights to flag victory while Rosberg retired from third with engine failure, his title hopes going up in smoke along with his engine.

If you enjoyed this posting, please do share it with your network so more people can enjoy it as well. Also, check out my Formula 1 inspired designs at my online shops:

1. Hamilton Tees (fixed designs) is my online shop where you can get my Lewis Hamilton inspired designs printed on many different types of t-shirts and hoodies.
Link - http://shop.spreadshirt.com/hamiltontees/

2. Lewis Hamilton T-Shirt (design your own) is a designer shop where you can get the same designs on many more products - not just t-shirts but trousers, baby bibs, mugs, phone cases, whatever is available. You can adjust the size and location of the designs, add text and customize it exactly as you see fit.
Link - http://lewishamiltontshirt.spreadshirt.com/

3. Lewis Hamilton Collection (fixed designs) is my fixed design shop on Redbubble where most of the phone cases are and many other products.
Link - http://www.redbubble.com/people/akhnsx/collections/504049-lewis-hamilton-collection

Support Lewis this season by owning this collection. Thank you for your support. May Lewis win his fourth world title in 2016. We win and lose together. Go Lewis!

Here is a sample.


Wednesday, August 24, 2016

BELGIAN GP 2016 PREVIEW

This weekend F1 roars back into life after the summer break at the Spa Francorchamps circuit in Belgium one of the heritage jewels in the F1 calendar. With 19 corners on a 7km lap, Spa is the longest track on the calendar and one of the toughest on engines, with two sustained periods of flat out full throttle each lap; from La Source hairpin to Les Combes chicane which is around 25 seconds and then later in the lap the run through Blanchimont to Bus Stop chicane.

The first national race of Belgium was held in 1925 at the Spa region's race course, an area of the country that had been associated with motor sport since the very early years of racing. To accommodate Grand Prix motor racing, the Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps race course was built in 1921 but it was only used for motorcycle racing until 1924. After the 1923 success of the new 24 hours of Le Mans in France, the Spa 24 Hours, a similar 24-hour endurance race, was run at the Spa track. Since inception, Spa-Francorchamps has been known for its unpredictable weather. At one stage in its history it had rained at the Belgian Grand Prix for twenty years in a row.

Frequently drivers confront a part of the course that is clear and bright while another stretch is rainy and slippery. The Belgian Grand Prix was designated the European Grand Prix six times between 1925 and 1973, when this title was an honorary designation given each year to one grand prix race in Europe. It is one of the most popular races on the Formula One calendar, due to the scenic and historical Spa-Francorchamps circuit being a favorite of drivers and fans.

Spa Francorchamps has many claims to fame; popularity among drivers, a superb collection of high speed corners, unpredictable weather. But the factor which will probably stand out this weekend is that it is the highest engine power factor circuit on the F1 calendar. The track is 70% full throttle and the run from La Source hairpin to the braking point for Les Combes features 23.5 seconds of constant full throttle. And in this first season of the hybrid turbo power units, that will have a significant bearing on the result.

TRACK CHARACTERISTICS

Track Length : 7.004 kilometres.
Race Distance : 44 laps (308.052 kilometres).
Corners : 19 corners in total.
Average speed : 238km/h. Circuit based on public roads.
Aerodynamic Setup : Medium to Low downforce.
Top speed : 322km/h (with Drag Reduction System active on rear wing) – 312km/h without.
Full Throttle : 70% of the lap (high).
Time Spent Braking : 14% of lap.
Number Of Brake Zones : 9.
Brake Wear : Low.
Total Time Needed For Pit Stop : 21 seconds.
Lap record: Sebastian Vettel - 1:47.263 (Red Bull, 2009).

Last six winners at Spa:

2015: Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes); 2014: Daniel Ricciardo (Red Bull); 2013: Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull); 2012: Jenson Button (McLaren); 2011: Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull); 2010: Lewis Hamilton (McLaren).

WEATHER FORECAST

According to UBIMET, the official meteorological service provider to the FIA, there will be fine and sunny conditions across the week at Spa-Francorchamps, albeit with the risk of a shower on Sunday afternoon. Fine, sunny and stable weather conditions are expected through the week as an extensive high-pressure system covers Belgium.

However, the influence of an approaching Atlantic low will see the risk of rainfall increase toward the latter half of the weekend. Despite this, conditions remain exceptionally good for August, a month where Spa averages fifteen days of rainfall. From Wednesday to Friday mostly fine conditions are forecast with daily maximum temperatures of 29 to 31 degrees. Moderate winds from a generally southerly direction.

On Saturday, partly cloudy conditions are forecast with a maximum of 30 degrees. Winds light and variable with dry conditions likely to remain for the qualifying races. Sunday will also see dry and partly cloudy conditions at first with a 30-40% chance of a shower in the afternoon. With a wind shift to the southwest, temperatures will slightly lower with a maximum temperature of 28 degrees. No doubt most fans will be hoping that UBIMET is wrong and that the chance of rain increases to 70-80%.

DRS

Like in previous years, there will be two DRS zones. The detection point for the first zone will be 240m before Turn 2, with the activation point 310m after Turn 4. The second detection point will be 160m before Turn 18, with the activation point 30m after Turn 19.


TYRES

The P Zero medium, soft and supersoft tyres have been nominated for the longest lap of the year at 7.004 kilometres, which places high-energy loads through the tyres. Spa-Francorchamps in fact provides a real multi-faceted challenge for the tyres, and by extension for the teams and drivers as well. The historic circuit at the foothills of the Ardennes is renowned for its changeable weather, meaning that there is a true microclimate to provide a constant additional parameter for the strategists to consider.

White medium: a mandatory set that must be available for the race, low working range.
Yellow soft: again a mandatory set, should feature in the race but not ideal for long stints.
Red supersoft: will be used for qualifying with a focus on performance rather than durability.


  • Loads through the tyres are among the biggest of the year due to the long and fast corners.
  • Elevation changes also create vertical forces for tyres through compressions like Eau Rouge.
  • Rain is quite likely, but it frequently rains just on one part of the circuit and not on another.
  • Set-up is a compromise between low drag for straights and downforce for corners: not easy.
  • There are plenty of overtaking opportunities, which mean that strategy options are quite open.
  • There are no significant changes to the Spa-Francorchamps circuit and infrastructure this year.
  • F1 returns with yet another back-to-back: after Spa it's straight to Pirelli's home race at Monza.

SAFETY CAR

The chance of a safety car at Spa is statistically high at 80% and 1.4 per race. Rain is one reason, but also accidents tend to be high speed and so there can be quite a lot of debris.

CONCLUSIONS

It will be a test of character for Nico Rosberg in his battle for victory with Lewis Hamilton; a test of performance for Red Bull, who should be very fast here, especially in the middle sector and a test of resilience for Ferrari, which dispensed with its technical director before the break and now needs to regroup and finish the season strongly. This is Round 13 of 21 so there is still a long way to go and plenty to fight for as Ferrari fell behind Red Bull in the Constructors’ championship before the break.

If any Mercedes powered car starts on the front row this weekend, the manufacturer will move ahead of Ford and into third on the all-time table of front row starts for F1 engine suppliers. The two companies are currently tied on 301 each, while Renault (388) and Ferrari (472) head the list.

Hamilton led every lap of the German Grand Prix last time out in Hockenheim, and in the process he surpassed Alain Prost’s 2,684 total of F1 laps led to slot into third on the all-time table with 2,732. Ayrton Senna (2,987) and Michael Schumacher (5,111) remain in front of the world champion, but it is possible he could pass the Brazilian if he leads 255 more laps before the end of the season.

If you enjoyed this posting, please do share it with your network so more people can enjoy it as well. Also, check out my Formula 1 inspired designs at my online shops:

1. Hamilton Tees (fixed designs) is my online shop where you can get my Lewis Hamilton inspired designs printed on many different types of t-shirts and hoodies.
Link - http://shop.spreadshirt.com/hamiltontees/

2. Lewis Hamilton T-Shirt (design your own) is a designer shop where you can get the same designs on many more products - not just t-shirts but trousers, baby bibs, mugs, phone cases, whatever is available. You can adjust the size and location of the designs, add text and customize it exactly as you see fit.
Link - http://lewishamiltontshirt.spreadshirt.com/

3. Lewis Hamilton Collection (fixed designs) is my fixed design shop on Redbubble where most of the phone cases are and many other products.
Link - http://www.redbubble.com/people/akhnsx/collections/504049-lewis-hamilton-collection

Support Lewis this season by owning this collection. Thank you for your support. May Lewis win his fourth world title in 2016. We win and lose together. Go Lewis!

Here is a sample.


Thursday, July 28, 2016

CONCLUSIONS FROM THE HUNGARIAN GP

Lewis Hamilton had the measure of Nico Rosberg when it mattered most and F1’s regulations need some serious rethinking…

Lewis Hamilton ‘owned it’
Lewis Hamilton put in a measured drive with an engine that may be his last before penalties come, as he claimed a record-breaking fifth Hungarian GP victory.

Although Hamilton was told to “pick up the pace” and at one stage found himself just 0.4s ahead of Nico Rosberg as they navigated the traffic of Esteban Gutierrez, there was never the impression that Rosberg would – or could – attack.

Conspiracy theorists will be questioning whether team orders were at play or whether Hamilton was trying to back Rosberg up into the chasers.

However, the one thing is certain, the World Champion “owned it”, and now also owns the lead in the Drivers’ standings for the first time this season.

Best of the rest heats up
Sebastian Vettel hunted down Daniel Ricciardo in the closing stages of the Hungarian GP while Kimi Raikkonen had a fantastic battle – at least for the spectators’ perspective – with Max Verstappen.

After 70 laps Ricciardo beat Vettel by 0.674s and Verstappen was 0.385s ahead of Raikkonen.

Vettel put it down to the nature of the track, saying “it was clear that if you are ahead you can be fairly aggressive.”

What is really clear, though, is that aside from Raikkonen’s fastest lap time of the grand prix, the other three were lapping within three-tenths of each other.

The Red Bull and Ferrari drivers are now locked into a four-way fight for best of the rest, Ricciardo leading by one point ahead of Raikkonen with Vettel a further four of the pace and Verstappen, who only joined Red Bull after round four, 15 points behind his team-mate.

The title race may be a Mercedes-only tussle, but P3 at least is heating up.

Radio rules are dangerous
Ahead of the Hungarian GP weekend, the FIA issued clarification on the extensive restrictions on radio communications. What they failed to do in that directive was use any common sense.

Sergio Perez crashed in Austria as Force India were not allowed to inform him of a pending brake failure.

One race later Nico Rosberg was penalised for receiving information on how to avoid a repeat of his gearbox problem, a problem that could have resulted in his retirement but would not have caused a crash. PF1’s gets it, we don’t agree, but we do understand.

Moving onto Hungary, Jenson Button reports that the “pedal is stuck to the floor.” He was told by the McLaren pit wall: “Do not shift, we have lost hydraulic pressure.”

The Brit was able to continue only to be slapped with a drive-through penalty.

His response: “The brake pedal going to the floor isn’t classed as a safety issue? Interesting.”

We’d call it daft.

F1 rules must be enforced
The irony in Formula 1 is that even when there are rules that make sense, they are not always enforced.

This past weekend Nico Rosberg slowed marginally for double waved yellows, the same flags that an FIA report claimed Jules Bianchi had not slowed sufficiently for resulting in the catastrophic brain injuries from which he would never recover.

Rosberg claimed pole position with that lap, with Lewis Hamilton and others calling for clarification of the regulations.

There was more controversy in qualifying as 11 drivers fell short of the 107% limit, yet all were permitted to continue with the weekend.

And lastly there was Max Verstappen’s driving during the 70-lap grand prix when he came under pressure from Kimi Raikkonen.

It was clear that Verstappen moved more than once and yet he was not penalised.

“For me, he moved once to the right, I decided to go left and the other car moved left,” explained Raikkonen, who caught his front wing on Verstappen’s car as the teenager made his second move.

That, though, was not Verstappen’s only transgression as the duo almost touched laps later as he moved to block Raikkonen.

Why have rules if you aren’t going to enforce them?

Michelle Foster

Reproduced from PlanetF1.

If you enjoyed this posting, please do share it with your network so more people can enjoy it as well. Also, check out my Formula 1 inspired designs at my online shops:

1. Hamilton Tees (fixed designs) is my online shop where you can get my Lewis Hamilton inspired designs printed on many different types of t-shirts and hoodies.
Link - http://shop.spreadshirt.com/hamiltontees/

2. Lewis Hamilton T-Shirt (design your own) is a designer shop where you can get the same designs on many more products - not just t-shirts but trousers, baby bibs, mugs, phone cases, whatever is available. You can adjust the size and location of the designs, add text and customize it exactly as you see fit.
Link - http://lewishamiltontshirt.spreadshirt.com/

3. Lewis Hamilton Collection (fixed designs) is my fixed design shop on Redbubble where most of the phone cases are and many other products.
Link - http://www.redbubble.com/people/akhnsx/collections/504049-lewis-hamilton-collection

Support Lewis this season by owning this collection. Thank you for your support. May Lewis win his fourth world title in 2016. We win and lose together. Go Lewis!

Here is a sample.


Friday, July 22, 2016

HUNGARIAN GP 2016 PREVIEW

The Hungarian Grand Prix (Hungarian: Magyar Nagydíj) is a motor race held annually in Hungary. Since 1986, the race has been a round of the FIA Formula One World Championship. The first Hungarian Grand Prix was held on June 21, 1936 over a 3.1-mile (5.0 km) track laid out in Népliget, a park in Budapest. The Mercedes-Benz, Auto Union, and the Alfa Romeo-equipped Ferrari teams all sent three cars and the event drew a very large crowd. However, politics and the ensuing war meant the end of Grand Prix motor racing in the country for fifty years.

The Hungaroring circuit is 19 km from the centre of Budapest, alongside the M3 motorway at the border of the village, Mogyoród. The track is in a natural valley, surrounded by 50 hectares of rolling hillside. With this exceptional natural advantage, almost 80 percent of the racetrack is visible from any point. This is the reason why it is called "The Shallow Plate", it is because the spectators are watching races sitting by the side of an imaginary plate.Hungary is a much maligned circuit, due to its tight low speed nature and the difficulty of overtaking, but it has produced a surprising number of exciting races.

As well as being tough on tyres, the Hungaroring is very physically demanding on the drivers. They have often compared it to Singapore (renowned as the most physically demanding track of the year) due to the high number of corners, significant ambient temperatures, and comparatively little airflow though the car.

The Hungaroring is a circuit that is quite well balanced in terms of traction, braking and lateral energy demands. All the forces acting on the car are roughly equal in their extent, meaning that a neutral set-up is needed. The teams tend to run maximum downforce to generate the most aerodynamic grip.

Track Characteristics

Track length : 4.381km kilometres.
Race distance : 70 laps (306.630 kilometres).
Corners : 14 corners in total. Average speed of 190 km/h is the lowest of any permanent track on F1 calendar.
Aerodynamic setup : High downforce.
Top speed : 305 km/h (with Drag Reduction System active on rear wing) – 295km/h without.
Full throttle : 55% of the lap (low).
Time spent braking : 14% of lap.
Number of brake zones : 11.
Brake wear : High.
Total time needed for pit stop : 16 seconds.
Fuel effect (cost in lap time per 10kg of fuel carried) : 0.35 seconds (high).
Lap Record : 1:19.071 - M Schumacher (2004)

Weather Forecast

It's going to be hot throughout the weekend in Budapest, with temperatures between 28 and 31 degrees. F1 weather service Ubimet predicts a dry Friday and Saturday, though it says there are "big uncertainties" about Sunday's weather with risks of showers come race day.

First practice should take place in warm but cloudy conditions. However the second session, which starts at 2pm local time, is under threat from a series of showers which could turn thundery and are expected after noon. After that the conditions will settle down and the heat crank up under cloudless morning skies. Air temperatures are expected to exceed 30C on both days.

Last year’s sizzling weekend saw track temperatures hit 55C in qualifying and second practice. A significant factor this year will be how well the new track surface copes with the baking heat.

Tyres

Following the flat-out straights and fast corners of Silverstone is the tight and twisty Hungaroring: two circuits that could not be any more different. The medium, soft and supersoft tyres have been nominated for Hungary: statistically the most popular combination of the year so far, which was last used in Baku. The Hungaroring has been described as being like an oversized go-kart track, and adding to the challenge of the first circuit ever to stage a grand prix behind the Iron Curtain exactly 30 years ago are weather conditions that can range from extremely hot (a common occurrence) to rain (which was the case two years ago, as well as 2011).

There's only one real straight on the Hungaroring, which means tyres are constantly working. It's a well-balanced track, with traction, braking and lateral energy demands roughly equal. High temperatures make thermal degradation a factor. The emphasis is on mechanical grip, as a low average speed means there is little downforce.

Drivers describe the Hungaroring as one of the year's most physically demanding circuits. Hungary starts another back-to-back weekend, with the teams then going straight to Germany.

The Three Nominated Compounds:

White medium: a mandatory set that must be available for the race, low working range.
Yellow soft: another mandatory set whose versatility will make it a popular race tyre.
Red supersoft: used for qualifying but it's not yet clear how much they will figure in the race.


DRS

There will be two DRS zones sharing a detection point 5m before Turn 14. The activation points are 130m after the apex of Turn 14 and 6m after the apex of Turn 1.

The guardrail to the left of the run-off area at Turn 3 has been re-aligned to better protect the recovery vehicle and to allow space for a car that has been recovered. Also, speed bumps 50mm high have been installed two metres from the track edge in the run-off area at Turns 6/7, while new debris fencing has been installed close to the guardrail on the left between Turns 11 and 12 and around the outside of Turn 14.


Safety Car

Safety cars are surprisingly rare at the Hungaroring. One possible explanation is that there are few gravel traps for cars to get stranded in, with tarmac preferred through most corners. The chances of a safety car are only 10% and there have been only two in the last seven years.

Conclusion

The Silver Arrows have won an incredible 41 Grands Prix in the two and a half seasons since the introduction of the hybrid turbo engines, but Hungary has caused them much pain in the last two years, due to reliability and other issues. This is the only venue where Mercedes hasn’t won in two attempts during the V6 hybrid power era. Despite this, Lewis Hamilton is tied with Michael Schumacher as the most successful driver in the Hungarian Grand Prix, each having won it four times.

Instead, Red Bull (2014) and Ferrari (2015) have taken at the Hungaroring victory and there is a strong chance that Red Bull will be the team to beat this weekend, based on the performance of its chassis lately and the improvements in the Renault power unit which is now within 15hp of the Mercedes.

Nico Rosberg has never stood on the podium at this track. He arrives in Hungary looking to shore up a championship lead which has rapidly shrunk from 43 points to just one. Mercedes’ power unit may not offer as great an advantage at this track as at other circuits but their raft of detailed aerodynamic updates at Silverstone and the healthy advantage they enjoyed in qualifying shows the W07 wants for little in terms of downforce.

If you enjoyed this posting, please do share it with your network so more people can enjoy it as well. Also, check out my Formula 1 inspired designs at my online shops:

1. Hamilton Tees (fixed designs) is my online shop where you can get my Lewis Hamilton inspired designs printed on many different types of t-shirts and hoodies.
Link - http://shop.spreadshirt.com/hamiltontees/

2. Lewis Hamilton T-Shirt (design your own) is a designer shop where you can get the same designs on many more products - not just t-shirts but trousers, baby bibs, mugs, phone cases, whatever is available. You can adjust the size and location of the designs, add text and customize it exactly as you see fit.
Link - http://lewishamiltontshirt.spreadshirt.com/

3. Lewis Hamilton Collection (fixed designs) is my fixed design shop on Redbubble where most of the phone cases are and many other products.
Link - http://www.redbubble.com/people/akhnsx/collections/504049-lewis-hamilton-collection

Support Lewis this season by owning this collection. Thank you for your support. May Lewis win his fourth world title in 2016. We win and lose together. Go Lewis!

Here is a sample.


Wednesday, July 13, 2016

SPECIAL SILVERSTONE

Yes, yes I know the British GP is done and dusted. And I apologise as I should have gotten this piece posted BEFORE the race. But all is not lost, our regular guest contributor and man of wonder, Joshua Mason, has adjusted this piece to suit the time. Kind of "Back To The Future"...ish. Anyway, Lewis won! Yay! And we're still excited about that, right? Not only that, we're headed to one of Lewis' strongest tracks - Hungary. Yay! So, here he is, Joshua Mason with his excellent piece on that oldie but goodie and race-tastic circuit - Silverstone.

Last week saw our boy Lewis give a dominant display, leading from start to finish and increasing the pressure on Rosberg. The Silverstone track was, in typical British fashion, very wet, but the fans were still in good voice. The Northamptonshire track is the home of British Motorsport and by virtue, motorsport itself so what is the story behind the hallowed tarmac?

Lewis Hamilton equalled Nigel Mansell’s 4 British Grand Prix record, and with years ahead of him is likely to pass him with ease, especially if the GP stays at the track that he has always enjoyed driving. In fact most drivers love the Silverstone circuit, and this was on show last weekend. Hamilton finished 1st after starting pole, whilst Nico Rosberg had to deal with the little terrier that is Max Verstappen. The teenager chased Rosberg the whole day, and executed an excellent overtake on the famed turns. Though finally finishing second, Rosberg was penalised for a radio communication issue and Hamilton is now just 1 point away from him. The rain inevitably played its part but Hamilton said it is part and parcel of a British Grand Prix he loves "I am so grateful," said Hamilton. "We've got the best fans here, thank you so much. The good English weather came out. It was so tricky in those conditions. But that's what I love about this race - something always happens".

Silverstone is situated near the villages of Towcester and Silverstone and started life as an RAF base. The runways, as they so often do, provided some fun driving for local enthusiasts. In 1947 Maurice Geoghan and some other locals took part in a make shift race on the abandoned airfield and at some point Maurice hit a sheep who had wondered on to the track. He totalled his car, but the race became notorious as the Mutton Grand Prix thereafter. It did not take long for some brainboxes to see the potential, and it was bought and converted officially in 1948. It hosted its first Grand Prix of the Drivers’ Championship era in 1950 and started a legacy that has been unsurpassed.

Silverstone has shared a few of the Grand Prix’s with Aintree and Brands Hatch, but it has been the mainstay for the BGP. In 1990-91 it saw an overhaul of planning and the track was converted from the lightning fast early track, where drivers would take corners in fourth or fifth gear, to a more technical track. The first race on the new Silverstone was a win for Nigel Mansell in front of his home crowd, and the iconic image of him giving a lift to Ayrton Senna back to the paddock when the latter’s car ran out of fuel took place there too. Here is how the track has changed over the years:



Silverstone is known for its unpredictable weather, (well Britain is really) and it is these wet conditions that cause so much of the drama. Lewis seems to cope better than most. There is an abundance of overtaking opportunities at Silverstone with wide corners easily big enough for two cars at speeds of 170mph. Maggots-Beckett-Chapel is a rollercoaster of a right to left and even gives Eau Rouge a run for its money in my opinion.

Silverstone has a unique place in the calendar. Because most teams are based in the UK, it feels like a homecoming for the whole circus. 120,000 people are ready come rain or shine full of energy to welcome them home, and for now Lewis Hamilton sits at the top of the table. Silverstone really is in a class of its own but like Lewis my focus is on Hungary and the race for the Championship.

If you enjoyed this posting, please do share it with your network so more people can enjoy it as well. Also, check out my Formula 1 inspired designs at my online shops:

1. Hamilton Tees (fixed designs) is my online shop where you can get my Lewis Hamilton inspired designs printed on many different types of t-shirts and hoodies.

2. Lewis Hamilton T-Shirt (design your own) is a designer shop where you can get the same designs on many more products - not just t-shirts but trousers, baby bibs, mugs, phone cases, whatever is available. You can adjust the size and location of the designs, add text and customize it exactly as you see fit.

3. Lewis Hamilton Collection (fixed designs) is my fixed design shop on Redbubble where most of the phone cases are and many other products.

Support Lewis this season by owning this collection. Thank you for your support. May Lewis win his fourth world title in 2016. We win and lose together. Go Lewis!

Here is a sample.


Saturday, July 9, 2016

IF FORMULA 1 CARS HAD CAR KEYS...

Every car I've driven has a key. Even if the manufacturer says it is "keyless entry and go" or something like that. What about an F1 car? When a Formula 1 driver goes racing, they will take several items with them to their car, including a helmet and water bottle. But one thing they never carry on them is a car key.

Formula 1 is famous for being one of the most technologically advanced motorsports in the world. The cars are so incredibly complex nowadays, that they can’t simply be started cold with the turn of a key.

But what if it was possible for current Formula 1 cars to use a car key to start them up? Since each driver has their own personal design for their racing helmet, perhaps the same would be applied to each driver’s starter key. Inspired by these thoughts, Car Keys dreamt up some custom car key designs which some of the current F1 drivers could use for their race cars.

They even have a bent key for Maldonado. To see all the designs, go HERE.

If you enjoyed this posting, please do share it with your network so more people can enjoy it as well. Also, check out my Formula 1 inspired designs at my online shops:

1. Hamilton Tees (fixed designs) is my online shop where you can get my Lewis Hamilton inspired designs printed on many different types of t-shirts and hoodies.

2. Lewis Hamilton T-Shirt (design your own) is a designer shop where you can get the same designs on many more products - not just t-shirts but trousers, baby bibs, mugs, phone cases, whatever is available. You can adjust the size and location of the designs, add text and customize it exactly as you see fit.

3. Lewis Hamilton Collection (fixed designs) is my fixed design shop on Redbubble where most of the phone cases are and many other products.

Support Lewis this season by owning this collection. Thank you for your support. May Lewis win his fourth world title in 2016. We win and lose together. Go Lewis!

Here is a sample.


Friday, July 8, 2016

BRITISH GP 2016 PREVIEW

The British Grand Prix is a race in the calendar of the FIA Formula One World Championship. It is currently held at the Silverstone Circuit near the village of Silverstone in Northamptonshire in England. The British and Italian Grands Prix are the oldest continuously staged Formula One World Championship Grands Prix. It was designated the European Grand Prix five times between 1950 and 1977, when this title was an honorary designation given each year to one Grand Prix race in Europe. All British Grands Prix dating back to 1926 have been held in England; where the British motor racing industry is primarily located.

Silverstone is one of the oldest races on the calendar and started life as an airfield. The end of Second World War left Britain with no major race track. An ex-farmer, James Wilson Brown, was employed by the RAC and given just two months to turn the site from a wartime airfield and farm into a race track for the first RAC International Grand Prix.

On the 2nd October 1948, an estimated 100,000 people flocked to see Luigi Villoresi drive from the back of the grid to beat a field of 22 others in his Maserati with a top speed of 72.2mph. Silverstone racing history had begun. From the 50 races held here at the circuit, Alain Prost holds the record for most wins at the circuit in 1983, 1985, 1989, 1990 and 1993. Nigel Mansell is only just behind Alain with 4 wins in 1986, 1987, 1991 and 1992.

Silverstone has the fastest corner combinations on the F1 calendar and is loved by the drivers, but it can be a real headache for the engineers and strategists, as it shows up aerodynamic instabilities and it can be very difficult to get a good reading on the tyres, especially as there is usually some rain during the practice sessions.

TRACK CHARACTERISTICS 

Track length : 5.891km kilometres.
Race distance : 52 laps (306.198 kilometres).
Corners : 18 corners in total. A high speed circuit based on an old WWII airfield. Lots of high-speed corners, aerodynamically challenging, very easy on brakes.
Aerodynamic setup : Med/High downforce.
Top speed : 311km/h (with Drag Reduction System active on rear wing) – 301km/h without.
Full throttle : 66% of the lap (medium).
Fuel consumption : High.
Time spent braking : 9% of lap (very low). 9 braking zones.
Brake wear : Low.
Total time needed for pit stop : 25 seconds.

WEATHER FORECAST

The first noteworthy rain is expected to arrive from the south-west in the early hours of Friday morning and potentially last until around the start of the first practice session. There should be no further rain on Friday, giving the teams a chance to do some more productive work during the second practice session. The sun may even break through later in the day.

Saturday’s conditions look set to be the most challenging so far as a more significant shower will arrive from the same direction and potentially affect both final practice and qualifying. However warm air from the south should keep temperatures reasonably warm and help dry the track out.

On Sunday the temperatures will again push towards 20C but at present it is expected to stay dry for the race.

TYRES

Silverstone comes straight off the back of Austria but the two events could not be more different: after selecting the softest tyres in the P Zero range for Austria, the hardest tyres in the line-up have been chosen for Silverstone (with only the soft being nominated for both, which is present at every race this season). It's only the second time this year that the hardest tyres have been selected - after Spain - and this is due to the high-energy, high-speed demands of the British circuit, which features fast straights and rapid changes of direction.

Orange hard: not seen so often this year but likely to be used at some point in Silverstone.
White medium: will be a popular race tyre and is one of the mandatory sets, along with hard.
Yellow soft: seen at every GP year, the softest tyre available in Silverstone is the most popular choice among the teams in terms of quantities chosen.

DRS

There are two DRS zones, the detection point of the first is 25m before T3 (Village), with the activation point 30m after T5. The second detection point is at T10 (Maggotts) with the activation point 55m after T14 (Chapel).



PIT STOPS

Because the new pit lane at Silverstone is quite long, a stop is relatively slow by F1 standards at 25 seconds total pit lane time. This encourages teams to do less, rather than more stops.

SAFETY CAR

Silverstone is a fast, open circuit with lots of run off areas. So for marshals it’s relatively safe to recover a broken car. The chances of a safety car are therefore quite low – 57%, with 0.6 safety cars per race.

BRITISH GP FAST FACTS

► The British Grand Prix is one of two ever-present races on the Formula One World Championship calendar. The other race featuring every year since 1950 is the Italian Grand Prix.
► Three venues have hosted the British Grand Prix during the World Championship era. Silverstone shared the early races with Aintree, which held races in 1955, ’57, ’59 and 1961-2. Aintree was replaced by Brands Hatch, which held the British Grand Prix in even years between 1964-1986. Silverstone has hosted all of the other races.
► 2014 marks the 48th running of the Formula One World Championship British Grand Prix at Silverstone. The circuit, however, is celebrating it’s 50th race, having hosted pre-World Championship grands prix in 1948 and 1949. Both of those races were won by Maserati, courtesy of drivers Luigi Villoresi and Baron Emmanuel ‘Toulo’ de Graffenried respectively. Giuseppe ‘Nino’ Farina won the inaugural world championship race in 1950. Before Silverstone, a British Grand Prix was held at the Brooklands circuit in 1926 and 1927.
► Silverstone is situated in an area known as ‘Motorsport Valley’. Eight of the 11 F1 teams are clustered within 125km of the track. In order of distance they are McLaren (125km), Williams (65km), Caterham (59km), Lotus (40km), Red Bull  (33km), Marussia (24km) and Mercedes (13km), with Force India based a few hundred metres from the front gates of the circuit. Additionally, Mercedes High Performance Powertrains’ manufacturing facility is based 33km from the circuit and Toro Rosso’s wind tunnel is located 23km away.
► Jim Clark (1962, ’63, ’64, ’65, ’67) and Alain Prost (1983, ’85, ’89, ’90, ’93) share top billing at the British Grand Prix with five victories each. One behind them is this weekend’s driver steward Nigel Mansell who won in 1986, ’87, ’91 and ’92. Mansell did, however claim five victories on home soil, winning the 1985 European Grand Prix at Brands Hatch a year before winning the British Grand Prix at the same circuit. Mansell is one of only two drivers to have won differently titled grands prix at the same circuit (Nelson Piquet won the 1980 Italian and 1981 San Marino Grands Prix at Imola.)

CONCLUSION

The current Silverstone layout is a huge challenge for teams and drivers, with the fastest corner combination of any F1 circuit. It is a strange one for the hybrid systems as the track is the lightest of the season on braking, but with 70% of the lap at full throttle, it’s hugely demanding on hybrid Energy Recovery, which harvests braking energy. So you have the demand on the energy but not enough opportunities to harvest the energy in braking. A very efficient system is essential to be competitive.

The internal war within Mercedes will still be raging into the British Grand Prix weekend, possibly with ramifications for the battle at the front. If the two drivers find themselves anywhere close together in the dying moments on Sunday, there will be a lot of gritted teeth on the pit wall.

Legend Murray Walker says:

“I suspect that deep down in his heart he may realise that Hamilton is actually a bit better than he is, in my opinion. There’s very little in it, very little, but when push comes to shove, put Hamilton in the same car as Rosberg and I think he will win.”

I agree with Murray. Rosberg knows that and is under pressure all the time. Just what is needed for the Hammer to smash him into oblivion.

If you enjoyed this posting, please do share it with your network so more people can enjoy it as well. Also, check out my Formula 1 inspired designs at my online shops:

1. Hamilton Tees (fixed designs) is my online shop where you can get my Lewis Hamilton inspired designs printed on many different types of t-shirts and hoodies.
Link - http://shop.spreadshirt.com/hamiltontees/

2. Lewis Hamilton T-Shirt (design your own) is a designer shop where you can get the same designs on many more products - not just t-shirts but trousers, baby bibs, mugs, phone cases, whatever is available. You can adjust the size and location of the designs, add text and customize it exactly as you see fit.
Link - http://lewishamiltontshirt.spreadshirt.com/

3. Lewis Hamilton Collection (fixed designs) is my fixed design shop on Redbubble where most of the phone cases are and many other products.
Link - http://www.redbubble.com/people/akhnsx/collections/504049-lewis-hamilton-collection

Support Lewis this season by owning this collection. Thank you for your support. May Lewis win his fourth world title in 2016. We win and lose together. Go Lewis!

Here is a sample.