Sunday, April 25, 2010


A home for Lewis and Jensen. After all the ups and downs with Bernie and Donnington, Silverstone is back as the official venue of the British GP. And it will do so for the next ten years with an option to renew for another 7 years, provided Silverstone can afford Bernie's demands.

I like Silverstone. Not just because of its rich racing history (it did kick off the current world championship in 1950) but the circuit layout although looks simple, is quite enjoyable to drive. It's fast, flowing and has a 4 apex chicane, kinda like Suzuka.

Well, now that Silverstone is safe and will host this year's race, it has been freshened up with a new layout. According to Damon Hill, president of BRDC (British Racing Drivers Club) which owns Silverstone:
‘We think we have produced a racetrack of the future,’. It looks like it has the potential to be a real corker.’

Saturday, April 24, 2010


Keith of F1Fanatic has as usual come up with an excellent analysis of the current team and drivers pecking order in F1 for this season so far. It seems the indications during winter testing has some accuracy to it although everybody says that we cannot take any times from testing seriously.

From winter testing, everybody knows or have guessed that the top 4 teams would be Red Bull, McLaren, Ferrari and Mercedes - not necessarily in that order. And they were right, so winter times does have some bearing, it's an indicator. And we have been proven right. So heading to Spain, we have the top 4 teams - Red Bull, McLaren, Ferrari and Mercedes - hot on each other's heels with massive development waiting to make an impact.

So here are the links to Keith's analysis:

The pecking order as the teams ready their Barcelona performance upgrades
Jenson Button form guide
Lewis Hamilton form guide

On the side, it's worth mentioning that although it seems that Button has out qualified and outraced Lewis so far, he has been doing it on making the right calls. But Lewis has been far superior when it comes to pace and overtaking. Lewis has done 32 overtaking maneuvers so far compared to Jensen's 7.

So I would say that on a one-on-one basis on a free track and nobody around, Lewis beat the crap out of Jensen, hands down.

Sunday, April 18, 2010


What a race! Again it has been proven that rain does make a good show even better. And what a confusion at the start as the rain started during the warm up lap. I was and still am confused who started on what tyres and the consequence of that.

Finally a McLaren 1-2. They deserved it after all the speed they displayed during practice and qualifying, even though Q3 sucked for them. The win was exceptional because of the 2 different strategies employed by Button and Lewis. Lewis as usual displayed his skill and determination by carving up the field from P6. He chased and overtook everybody on his way to P2.

I especially enjoyed his tussle with Schumacher. Schumacher displayed some skill in defending and re-overtaking his position from Lewis but finally it shows how tired he was and how low was his killer instinct when Lewis re-took the position and flew away. Also, worth mentioning was the fact that the Mercedes was no match for the McLaren, a fact demonstrated again when Lewis took Rosberg for P2. But then again, is it the car or the driver because even Petrov took Schumacher. And he's a rookie driving a Renault.

Red Bull was a disappointment again even though the car was reliable, it somehow didn't have the setup for rain I suspect. Vettel and Webber both got taken by Alonso at the start but we have to remember Alonso jumped the start (and paid for it with a drive through, although a black flag was warranted if you ask me). Then they were overtaken by the McLarens and even Petrov (one of them at least).

The win by Button just shows that sometimes a correct call would be better than banzai driving. Lewis is again undisputed as one of the best and thrilling drivers out there but Button made the right call again and took care of his tyres better. This was demonstrated by the fact that Button made 2 pitstops compared to Lewis' 4 and towards the end, Lewis was losing almost 2 seconds a lap to Button as his tyres were just gone.

But then again Lewis did catch up to Button in the final few laps partly due to Button slipping around and almost going off the track. It also demonstrates Lewis' killer instinct and skill.

Rosberg also showed his potential. If he was in the McLaren he would be very difficult to beat. I hope he continues his upward climb and beats Schumacher at every race until the end of the season.

The only worry about this race was the incident between Lewis and Vettel in the pitlane. It started when entering the pitlane where they were both still racing going into the pits. And after what looked like an unsafe release by McLaren, Lewis managed to get alongside Vettel, almost lost the car and they were both still at it fighting out of the pits. Crazy and exciting to watch but I can't imagine what the stewards are gonna do about it as they have announced an investigation after the race.

Knowing the stewards and almost everybody's hatred for Lewis, I have a bad feeling that either the stewards are gonna ruin this race by giving a post race penalty or a grid penalty at the next race. Whatever it is, one thing is sure, there will be a penalty.

Update : Well I guess pigs do fly then. It seems that the incident involving Vettel and Lewis in the pitlane has been adjudged as a racing incident and the stewards have given them both reprimands and no penalties. NO PENALTIES. Yes, you read right. What has happened to our beloved race-ruining stewards, we'll never know.

Saturday, April 17, 2010


To put things in perspective just requires one word - disappointment. It was a disappointment watching McLaren during today's qualifying because as strong as the Red Bulls are, McLaren has so much promise leading both FP1 and FP2 plus topping Q1 and Q2.

What happened in Q3? Lewis should have taken pole but was pushed back to 6th. I could understand if it was P2 but P6?

"It was quite easy to be up the front. The car started bottoming a lot more in Q3 but I don't know whether that's had anything to do with the balance of the car, but I just had no more time in the car. The car was sliding a lot more.

"In Q1 and Q2 the car was even better and I really don't understand what was wrong with the car in Q3 but I wasn't able to get any more time out of it.

"That was me on the limit so I don't know where the time is. We have to go and analyse it and try and find it, but I'm sure tomorrow will be a good race."

McLaren need to seriously up their game if they are to stay in the game and beat the other 3 teams. Look at how strong Rosberg is. Luckily we don't have to worry about Schumacher, he doesn't seem interested to be aggresive enough to win races. It shows on his lap video. His lap was too clean, he wasn't using the track to the maximum or attacking the corners enough.

These Red Bull boys are a tricky lot. The more I look at how they've been handling race weekends, the more I'm inclined to believe that their strategy is to sandbag, deceive the rest into thinking that they are not that fast during free practice and even during Q1 and Q2 of qualifying. Then when it matters in Q3, they "unleash the Kraken!".

Red Bull have had 4 pole positions 4 races in a row. That must mean something. It means their car is bloody fast and bloody good at balance, whether it be low fuel or high fuel and does not matter which track it is running on. I would not discount the Red Bull to become this year's champion.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Hamilton loving driving 2010 McLaren

Lewis Hamilton has said that he is enjoying driving this year and enjoying the car. I agree. look at both his inspired driving at Melbourne and Sepang. Normally I would be devastated when he does not get a good qualifying position but nowadays I just stay cool when it happens.

I'm cool because I know the race will be exciting as Lewis will be carving his way through the field and overtaking like mad. And he did it at both races. His driving was incredible, inspiring and full of action. That is the kind of action that I want to see as an F1 fan. But sadly, most races these days are just a procession. A reverse grid would spice things up but not practical to implement.

Anyway, lets hope the rest of the season is just as exciting and that Lewis gets a chance to start from pole and blazes his way tom the win more often.


India will be hosting a round of the F1 world championship in 2011 (postponed from 2010 as they had to host some Commonwealth games). That should be an exciting race as it will be in a country of 1.3 billion people who are starting to support F1 and the fact that there is an Indian team and an Indian driver in the mix would stir up interest.

What's more important though is the track itself. Would it provide an interesting race and would it be exciting to drive? Well, here is the proposed layout of the new track. It looks simple enough with some interesting elevations but don't expect much as it is another Tilke creation. Hopefully we can download the track to our simulator and give it a go soon.

So what do you think?

Wednesday, April 7, 2010


We have seen during the last 2 race weekends how a top team like McLaren and Ferrari can make mistakes in qualifying and therefore put their drivers in a difficult position. Lewis Hamilton started the race in Melbourne 11th and 20th in Malaysia.

After the last 2 races, it is quite obvious that the thing to do during qualifying is to do banker laps everytime a qualifying session starts. Which means that no matter what the radar or technology says, just go out and set the best time possible as soon as possible.

Martin Whitmarsh had this to say about their recent qualifying form :
"We have learned lessons. The primary one is that in Q1 we are not racing Ferrari or the other big boys, we just need to get through to Q2 and cover the slow cars in those changeable conditions."
Exactly. That is why a banker lap needs to be done as soon as the session turns green. This is especially important when it is raining or when the weather is not so good. I hope McLaren learns this lesson well and applies it to China as the Chinese GP has a habit of going wet.


The 2010 Malaysian F1 GP is over and what a race. For once, the race at Sepang was exciting and it happened without rain. It was supposed to rain, Friday practice was wet and so was qualifying. In fact, qualifying was so bad that Alonso, Massa and Lewis were relegated to 19th, 20th and 21st. But I knew that Lewis being behind would be good for the race because he'll be carving his way up the field like in Melbourne the week before.

I especially enjoyed the start where Lewis jumped as much as 7 cars in the first lap alone, I think it was at the first turn alone. And he kept on overtaking cars, on the inside and outside of turns until he was at one point 2nd, up 18 from 20th. His tyres lasted more than 30 laps before he changed to the soft options.

Button on the other hand pitted early, probably another one of his gamble which didn't really pay off. In fact, this race showed that Button is not really world champion material but last year he was helped by the car. He had Massa behind him and allowed Massa to pass him without much fuss. In fact, watching him "holding back" Massa was like watching a Sunday driver wasting time.

Button does not have the aggressive killer instinct that Lewis does. Forget about asking Button to overtake, he can't even hold back somebody. Although he managed to hold back Alonso, Alonso almost overtook him in the end if not for an engine failure. And Alonso was going round with a problematic gearbox.

Lewis made some incredible overtaking maneuvers like the one on Petrov and defended his lead after that with 4 weavings on the front straight. Although the stewards gave him a warning for weaving or dangerous driving, I think it was only racing. By the way, somebody should tell the stewards that motorsports is dangerous.

All in all, a great race which didn't need rain. Although after this we'll never know when we'll need rain. But I am considering reversing grids after this. It seems that the race is really spiced up when that happens. What do you think?