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Thread: 2018 F1 news

  1. #661
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ferrarichamp View Post
    Greig is it 20 years already? now that a long time
    20 years since what?? NOT since we won a championship.....since that it's ONLY BEEN TEN.....
    ...the new SF90 in the MATTE RED, to me it looks amazing. Let's hope it's gonna be as FAST as it looks.


  2. #662
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    Quote Originally Posted by Silent Bob View Post
    I think if Greig leaves the forum.. we are all looking for another place to post.

  3. #663
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    Quote Originally Posted by Silent Bob View Post
    I think if Greig leaves the forum.. we are all looking for another place to post.
    Great and positive sentiments. For me, if Greig decided to hand over the reigns to some enthusiastic new owner for the site then I'd give them a go. Kinda like when various great SF team members have left the team in the past.
    We will all stop posting here some day

  4. #664
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    Quote Originally Posted by Silent Bob View Post
    I think if Greig leaves the forum.. we are all looking for another place to post.
    #KeepFightingMichael | #CiaoJules

  5. #665
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    Quote Originally Posted by jgonzalesm6 View Post
    Look, I hope the guy stays with whatever help he can bring and he proves me wrong.....until then.
    until then you can reserve your negative opinion..
    #KeepFightingMichael | #CiaoJules

  6. #666
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    FERRARI has signed the FIA’s safety director, Laurent Mekies, to bolster its technical team.

    In what could be viewed by rival teams as a controversial appointment, Mekies will join the Maranello outfit in September after nearly four years at F1’s governing body.

    Sky F1’s David Croft tweeted: “Interesting signing by Ferrari.”

    Ferrari’s move for Mekies, a former engineer at Toro Rosso, comes just six months after Renault angered rivals by signing the FIA’s then-technical director Marcin Budkowski. He starts work at Enstone next month.

    Mekies will continue in his role overseeing the FIA’s safety program until June, but “will immediately cease all Formula 1 duties and will no longer be involved in any Formula 1 matter, stepping down from his role as deputy F1 race director with immediate effect”.

    The Frenchman will then start work at Ferrari on September 20 and report in to technical director Mattia Binotto, although the team has not specified what role Mekies will take on.

    Rival teams criticised Budkowski’s move to Renault when it was confirmed last October after it emerged the technical chief would have to serve just three months’ gardening leave prior to joining the Enstone team.

    Team bosses were angered that Budkowski’s role at the FIA meant he had seen details of their 2018 cars, with Red Bull’s Christian Horner describing the short period of gardening leave as “entirely inappropriate”.

    Mekies will return to frontline F1 involvement for the first time since leaving Toro Rosso, where he was chief engineer. The Frenchman has also worked for Arrows and Minardi.

    After joining the FIA in late 2014 to oversee their safety work across motorsport, he was chosen to succeed the long-serving Herbie Blash as second in command to F1 race director Charlie Whiting.
    #KeepFightingMichael | #CiaoJules

  7. #667
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    Quote Originally Posted by FerrariF60 View Post
    20 years since what?? NOT since we won a championship.....since that it's ONLY BEEN TEN.....
    yeah that's only been 10, hopefully this will be the year we get our next one

  8. #668
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ferrarichamp View Post
    yeah that's only been 10, hopefully this will be the year we get our next one
    but judging by the pattern we have in recent years......2009 nowhere, 2010 fighting for championship, 2011 bad, 2012 fighting for championship, 2013 bad, 2014 nowhere, 2015 good car, 2016 nowhere, 2017 fighting for championship, this will not be our year

  9. #669
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    Quote Originally Posted by zike View Post
    but judging by the pattern we have in recent years......2009 nowhere, 2010 fighting for championship, 2011 bad, 2012 fighting for championship, 2013 bad, 2014 nowhere, 2015 good car, 2016 nowhere, 2017 fighting for championship, this will not be our year
    Finally, some scientific, well reasoned logic. It's the year number that determines our success or failure, and here I thought it was to do with our team members, our development work and technology

  10. #670
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    Quote Originally Posted by enjaybel3 View Post
    Finally, some scientific, well reasoned logic. It's the year number that determines our success or failure, and here I thought it was to do with our team members, our development work and technology.
    you dont see the pattern?

    of course all patterns can be broken, we shell see

  11. #671
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    Quote Originally Posted by enjaybel3 View Post
    Finally, some scientific, well reasoned logic. It's the year number that determines our success or failure, and here I thought it was to do with our team members, our development work and technology
    What about the stars? When Aquarius is in the house of Pisces who's visiting Leo, we do awesome.

  12. #672
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  13. #673
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    Every year I try to pick the same spots around the Circuit de Catalunya at Barcelona to watch the pre-season tests. It's a great track to walk around and watch at close quarters because you can see a whole range of corners and areas where cars show their strengths and weaknesses.

    Fast corners, slow corners, changes of direction, braking and traction - they can all be judged by your eyes and ears and, pretty much every year, my list matches up with the lap times because there's nowhere to hide.



    F1 2018 might depend on Bottas
    Last year Ferrari looked like it was a real match for Mercedes in pre-season testing, and when we got to Melbourne that proved to be the case. This year, however, the Brackley squad seems to have taken another good step forward.

    Visually the car is a logical update on 2017's championship winner, but it's obviously had all the right changes to make it much more user-friendly. Watching Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas out on track, they are able to metronomically hit the same line lap after lap with remarkable consistency. And speed.

    Mercedes has been very smart about not showing its hand with the faster tyres, but make no mistake, a quick look at the race runs shows very clearly that the W09 is a step ahead of the pack. I reckon the gap is about 0.4 seconds at the moment. Unless Mercedes has some dramatic chassis imbalance when the softer tyres get bolted on - highly unlikely - it is unquestionably on top.

    Watching at the very fast Turn 9 right-hander, Bottas carried an unbelievable amount of speed through the apex on the medium tyres, with fuel on board. In contrast, when watching either the Ferrari or the Red Bull on the long run, the drivers just didn't have the grip to carry the same speed through.

    The change of direction with the front end seemed to be a good step forward from last year. When you watch either Mercedes driver between Turns 2 and 3 or further around the lap in the final sector, they are able to change direction incredibly sharply when they have a sequence of corners. This allows them to just open up the line to the second part of a sequence and carry more apex speed than anyone else.

    This is particularly worrying for the opposition as the opportunities they had last year were on slower, twistier circuits. Clearly that area of weakness has been focused on and dealt with.

    From a power-unit standpoint, the driveability seems extraordinary. Not once do you hear of the drivers struggling for traction, despite trying to put an estimated 1000bhp onto the ground. Mercedes continues to be the gold standard in reliability terms, with an incredible 201 laps on the final day of testing to just drive the point home.

    For the sake of Formula 1 and the show, I really hope that Bottas can take the fight to Hamilton this year.



    Ferrari is closer to Red Bull
    The headlines from the last week of testing show that Ferrari and Red Bull shared the quickest times across the four days. But come qualifying in Melbourne, I think the entire paddock will be pretty shocked if anything other than a Mercedes is on pole position.

    Watching the Ferrari out on track, it's clearly a fast car. Last year in pre-season testing, it looked like an easier car to drive than the Mercedes, but this time around, every time the drivers try to lean on it a bit more and extract some more speed, it just doesn't seem to be there.

    At Turn 4, for example, Kimi Raikkonen would charge in and try to get the nose to bite, but it just doesn't dig in and pivot in the same way the Mercedes does. The rotation that they need mid-corner to get the car to turn while carrying the apex speed they want isn't there in the medium and slow-speed corners. Watching at Turns 11 and 12 showed the stark difference between the lazier Ferrari and the sharper Mercedes in changes of direction.

    Red Bull and Ferrari are very evenly matched but both need a big step forward with updates to catch Mercedes
    Red Bull looks like it has carried on its progression from the end of 2017, when the chassis was working brilliantly. It's hard to fault the RB14 in the slow and medium-speed corners, and the braking stability into T1 and T10 looked excellent.

    But in the faster corners the Mercedes still looks like it's got a bit of an advantage. When I looked at T9 on the race runs, I noticed Daniel Ricciardo had a much bigger lift than Bottas and, every time he would have a go at just a bit more apex speed, he would just run out of road.

    Red Bull's main weakness could still be in the power department. Renault seems to have made good progress on the reliability front, with some good testing mileage being banked by Red Bull and the works Enstone team. I hope that this means the power can be turned up a bit more in qualifying, but insiders still reckon Renault is going to be about 40bhp down on the Mercedes.

    On the whole, I would say that Red Bull and Ferrari are very evenly matched. They even did race runs at similar times of the day, which helped us see that they were close. Both need a big step forward with updates to catch Mercedes.



    Where will the other Renault teams slot in?
    McLaren has been the biggest talking point of the pre-season tests. All through the winter, Formula 1 fans around the world were praying that the switch to Renault power would allow Fernando Alonso and the team to be fighting at the sharp end once again.

    McLaren had a catalogue of reliability woes and, when the car was running, the team chose a strategy of testing with softer tyres than anyone else for most of the time, which made it hard to draw any conclusions about the MCL33's true pace.

    On the last couple of days we saw some long runs from Stoffel Vandoorne and some decent medium and short runs from Alonso, which confirmed that, on pace, McLaren certainly has the potential to be the fourth-best team.

    Is that enough for the Woking squad? That's a question that a lot of people in the paddock are asking. At the end of the day, it now has the same power unit as the Red Bull and has spent the past few years claiming it had the best chassis on the grid. The world should probably cut McLaren some slack for the first four flyaways, until it starts to gel properly with Renault. But from the Spanish Grand Prix (round five, in May) onwards, McLaren really needs to be matching Red Bull.

    McLaren looks like it has the potential to be fourth best. Is it a Red Bull-beater? I wouldn't put money on it yet
    At the moment, unless the team sorts out the reliability gremlins that have hurt it over the past two weeks, it isn't going to be racking up the points or getting the crucial running it needs on a race weekend to get the car set up right. What's been worrying for the team is that it's not just had the same issue again and again, but instead a whole variety of problems. There are clearly some installation issues, which are different from what the works Renault and Red Bull teams have - burned bodywork and holes cut into the engine cover were clear giveaways that all isn't well.

    Out on track, the car does look balanced and confidence-inspiring. Alonso certainly wasn't shy of throwing it around straight out of the box, and the car seemed to respond well. The front end tucked into the apex of the medium-speed corners such as Turn 7 very well and, while it didn't look as comfortable over the kerbs as the Mercedes (which was frankly like a limousine on a bed of air), it still looks like it has the potential to be fourth best.

    Is it a Red Bull-beater? I wouldn't put money on it yet.



    The works Renault team looks like a proper factory squad for the first time in years. It has two hotshots in the cockpit, solid funding and good people on board. The car looks balanced out on track and, apart from a gearbox glitch on the final day, generally has very good reliability.

    It's been a very impressive turnaround in the past 18 months - who can forget the woeful qualifying in Baku 2016 when the yellow cars were on the back row of the grid?

    Renault looks like it's at the sharp end of the battle for fourth with McLaren, and about half a second behind Ferrari and Red Bull. That's a good starting point for a team that's rebuilding, and I'm really interested to see how it progresses in this fight with its orange customer.



    Are there surprises in the midfield?
    For the past two years, Force India and Williams have locked out the 'best-of-the-rest' territory behind the top three teams. This could be a tricky ask for the two Mercedes customers this year, as Renault, McLaren and Haas all seem to be more competitive than in 2017.

    When watching trackside, the Williams looked unpredictable on corner entry, which is just confidence-sapping for the drivers. Sergey Sirotkin did look like he had a bit more consistency on the final afternoon before handing over to Lance Stroll, but the team has had a big design change and it looks like it needs a bit more time to understand how to get the most from the FW41.

    The Force India also looked very tricky to drive, but the team is counting on a big update for Melbourne so we're probably better off reserving judgement.

    On the penultimate day of testing, Kevin Magnussen produced a lap on supersoft tyres that made the entire paddock sit up and take note. When you applied the tyre offsets, the Haas suddenly seemed like the fourth-fastest car out there, which had the other midfield teams scrambling for the long-run sheets to gauge where the team really is.

    Out on track, the Haas did look like a very good and balanced car, so it could well throw a curveball to Renault and McLaren.

    Toro Rosso's Honda reliability has been the other big surprise. The team completed the third-highest number of laps, and out on track the front end of the STR13, particularly at medium and slow speeds, looked like it was working very well. I'm really interested to see where Toro Rosso is in the pecking order when engines are turned up for qualifying!

  14. #674
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    Quote Originally Posted by Silent Bob View Post
    Every year I try to pick the same spots around the Circuit de Catalunya at Barcelona to watch the pre-season tests. It's a great track to walk around and watch at close quarters because you can see a whole range of corners and areas where cars show their strengths and weaknesses.

    Fast corners, slow corners, changes of direction, braking and traction - they can all be judged by your eyes and ears and, pretty much every year, my list matches up with the lap times because there's nowhere to hide.



    F1 2018 might depend on Bottas
    Last year Ferrari looked like it was a real match for Mercedes in pre-season testing, and when we got to Melbourne that proved to be the case. This year, however, the Brackley squad seems to have taken another good step forward.

    Visually the car is a logical update on 2017's championship winner, but it's obviously had all the right changes to make it much more user-friendly. Watching Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas out on track, they are able to metronomically hit the same line lap after lap with remarkable consistency. And speed.

    Mercedes has been very smart about not showing its hand with the faster tyres, but make no mistake, a quick look at the race runs shows very clearly that the W09 is a step ahead of the pack. I reckon the gap is about 0.4 seconds at the moment. Unless Mercedes has some dramatic chassis imbalance when the softer tyres get bolted on - highly unlikely - it is unquestionably on top.

    Watching at the very fast Turn 9 right-hander, Bottas carried an unbelievable amount of speed through the apex on the medium tyres, with fuel on board. In contrast, when watching either the Ferrari or the Red Bull on the long run, the drivers just didn't have the grip to carry the same speed through.

    The change of direction with the front end seemed to be a good step forward from last year. When you watch either Mercedes driver between Turns 2 and 3 or further around the lap in the final sector, they are able to change direction incredibly sharply when they have a sequence of corners. This allows them to just open up the line to the second part of a sequence and carry more apex speed than anyone else.

    This is particularly worrying for the opposition as the opportunities they had last year were on slower, twistier circuits. Clearly that area of weakness has been focused on and dealt with.

    From a power-unit standpoint, the driveability seems extraordinary. Not once do you hear of the drivers struggling for traction, despite trying to put an estimated 1000bhp onto the ground. Mercedes continues to be the gold standard in reliability terms, with an incredible 201 laps on the final day of testing to just drive the point home.

    For the sake of Formula 1 and the show, I really hope that Bottas can take the fight to Hamilton this year.



    Ferrari is closer to Red Bull
    The headlines from the last week of testing show that Ferrari and Red Bull shared the quickest times across the four days. But come qualifying in Melbourne, I think the entire paddock will be pretty shocked if anything other than a Mercedes is on pole position.

    Watching the Ferrari out on track, it's clearly a fast car. Last year in pre-season testing, it looked like an easier car to drive than the Mercedes, but this time around, every time the drivers try to lean on it a bit more and extract some more speed, it just doesn't seem to be there.

    At Turn 4, for example, Kimi Raikkonen would charge in and try to get the nose to bite, but it just doesn't dig in and pivot in the same way the Mercedes does. The rotation that they need mid-corner to get the car to turn while carrying the apex speed they want isn't there in the medium and slow-speed corners. Watching at Turns 11 and 12 showed the stark difference between the lazier Ferrari and the sharper Mercedes in changes of direction.

    Red Bull and Ferrari are very evenly matched but both need a big step forward with updates to catch Mercedes
    Red Bull looks like it has carried on its progression from the end of 2017, when the chassis was working brilliantly. It's hard to fault the RB14 in the slow and medium-speed corners, and the braking stability into T1 and T10 looked excellent.

    But in the faster corners the Mercedes still looks like it's got a bit of an advantage. When I looked at T9 on the race runs, I noticed Daniel Ricciardo had a much bigger lift than Bottas and, every time he would have a go at just a bit more apex speed, he would just run out of road.

    Red Bull's main weakness could still be in the power department. Renault seems to have made good progress on the reliability front, with some good testing mileage being banked by Red Bull and the works Enstone team. I hope that this means the power can be turned up a bit more in qualifying, but insiders still reckon Renault is going to be about 40bhp down on the Mercedes.

    On the whole, I would say that Red Bull and Ferrari are very evenly matched. They even did race runs at similar times of the day, which helped us see that they were close. Both need a big step forward with updates to catch Mercedes.



    Where will the other Renault teams slot in?
    McLaren has been the biggest talking point of the pre-season tests. All through the winter, Formula 1 fans around the world were praying that the switch to Renault power would allow Fernando Alonso and the team to be fighting at the sharp end once again.

    McLaren had a catalogue of reliability woes and, when the car was running, the team chose a strategy of testing with softer tyres than anyone else for most of the time, which made it hard to draw any conclusions about the MCL33's true pace.

    On the last couple of days we saw some long runs from Stoffel Vandoorne and some decent medium and short runs from Alonso, which confirmed that, on pace, McLaren certainly has the potential to be the fourth-best team.

    Is that enough for the Woking squad? That's a question that a lot of people in the paddock are asking. At the end of the day, it now has the same power unit as the Red Bull and has spent the past few years claiming it had the best chassis on the grid. The world should probably cut McLaren some slack for the first four flyaways, until it starts to gel properly with Renault. But from the Spanish Grand Prix (round five, in May) onwards, McLaren really needs to be matching Red Bull.

    McLaren looks like it has the potential to be fourth best. Is it a Red Bull-beater? I wouldn't put money on it yet
    At the moment, unless the team sorts out the reliability gremlins that have hurt it over the past two weeks, it isn't going to be racking up the points or getting the crucial running it needs on a race weekend to get the car set up right. What's been worrying for the team is that it's not just had the same issue again and again, but instead a whole variety of problems. There are clearly some installation issues, which are different from what the works Renault and Red Bull teams have - burned bodywork and holes cut into the engine cover were clear giveaways that all isn't well.

    Out on track, the car does look balanced and confidence-inspiring. Alonso certainly wasn't shy of throwing it around straight out of the box, and the car seemed to respond well. The front end tucked into the apex of the medium-speed corners such as Turn 7 very well and, while it didn't look as comfortable over the kerbs as the Mercedes (which was frankly like a limousine on a bed of air), it still looks like it has the potential to be fourth best.

    Is it a Red Bull-beater? I wouldn't put money on it yet.



    The works Renault team looks like a proper factory squad for the first time in years. It has two hotshots in the cockpit, solid funding and good people on board. The car looks balanced out on track and, apart from a gearbox glitch on the final day, generally has very good reliability.

    It's been a very impressive turnaround in the past 18 months - who can forget the woeful qualifying in Baku 2016 when the yellow cars were on the back row of the grid?

    Renault looks like it's at the sharp end of the battle for fourth with McLaren, and about half a second behind Ferrari and Red Bull. That's a good starting point for a team that's rebuilding, and I'm really interested to see how it progresses in this fight with its orange customer.



    Are there surprises in the midfield?
    For the past two years, Force India and Williams have locked out the 'best-of-the-rest' territory behind the top three teams. This could be a tricky ask for the two Mercedes customers this year, as Renault, McLaren and Haas all seem to be more competitive than in 2017.

    When watching trackside, the Williams looked unpredictable on corner entry, which is just confidence-sapping for the drivers. Sergey Sirotkin did look like he had a bit more consistency on the final afternoon before handing over to Lance Stroll, but the team has had a big design change and it looks like it needs a bit more time to understand how to get the most from the FW41.

    The Force India also looked very tricky to drive, but the team is counting on a big update for Melbourne so we're probably better off reserving judgement.

    On the penultimate day of testing, Kevin Magnussen produced a lap on supersoft tyres that made the entire paddock sit up and take note. When you applied the tyre offsets, the Haas suddenly seemed like the fourth-fastest car out there, which had the other midfield teams scrambling for the long-run sheets to gauge where the team really is.

    Out on track, the Haas did look like a very good and balanced car, so it could well throw a curveball to Renault and McLaren.

    Toro Rosso's Honda reliability has been the other big surprise. The team completed the third-highest number of laps, and out on track the front end of the STR13, particularly at medium and slow speeds, looked like it was working very well. I'm really interested to see where Toro Rosso is in the pecking order when engines are turned up for qualifying!
    Pretty much what most of the experts are saying and realistically predicting,looks like mercs are taking the championships easy this year. sucks lol If this is accurate than maybe Zike was right all along
    hockenheim 2018 / China 2018 : Never forget how quick Ferrari can lose it all, be humble.
    Positivity doesn't win you championships, whining about people being negative makes you blind!
    lol ignore the bitter old cows ;-)

  15. #675
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    So in other words we re doomed in Australia.....no pole position for us and worse yet, red fools may be better and faster than US.....:(
    ...the new SF90 in the MATTE RED, to me it looks amazing. Let's hope it's gonna be as FAST as it looks.


  16. #676
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    Quote Originally Posted by mwk360 View Post
    Pretty much what most of the experts are saying and realistically predicting,looks like mercs are taking the championships easy this year. sucks lol If this is accurate than maybe Zike was right all along
    Quote Originally Posted by FerrariF60 View Post
    So in other words we re doomed in Australia.....no pole position for us and worse yet, red fools may be better and faster than US.....:(
    We learn it in 7 days!

  17. #677
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    Quote Originally Posted by mwk360 View Post
    Pretty much what most of the experts are saying and realistically predicting,looks like mercs are taking the championships easy this year. sucks lol If this is accurate than maybe Zike was right all along
    I would love to be wrong but I say as I see it, and statistically there is more chance for experts in the paddock to be right about us being much slower than Merc than the sandbaging dreams and illusion of 90% of this forum

  18. #678
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    Quote Originally Posted by zike View Post
    I would love to be wrong but I say as I see it, and statistically there is more chance for experts in the paddock to be right about us being much slower than Merc than the sandbaging dreams and illusion of 90% of this forum
    I would expect that Zike and i do not know why you are so Negative.in-life always be Positive and that will driive you.

  19. #679
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    Quote Originally Posted by ramesh View Post
    I would expect that Zike and i do not know why you are so Negative.in-life always be Positive and that will driive you.
    i agree, i would love to be wrong, and we win it all
    Last edited by zike; 16th March 2018 at 07:46.

  20. #680
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    Quote Originally Posted by Silent Bob View Post
    Every year I try to pick the same spots around the Circuit de Catalunya at Barcelona to watch the pre-season tests. It's a great track to walk around and watch at close quarters because you can see a whole range of corners and areas where cars show their strengths and weaknesses.

    Fast corners, slow corners, changes of direction, braking and traction - they can all be judged by your eyes and ears and, pretty much every year, my list matches up with the lap times because there's nowhere to hide.



    F1 2018 might depend on Bottas
    Last year Ferrari looked like it was a real match for Mercedes in pre-season testing, and when we got to Melbourne that proved to be the case. This year, however, the Brackley squad seems to have taken another good step forward.

    Visually the car is a logical update on 2017's championship winner, but it's obviously had all the right changes to make it much more user-friendly. Watching Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas out on track, they are able to metronomically hit the same line lap after lap with remarkable consistency. And speed.

    Mercedes has been very smart about not showing its hand with the faster tyres, but make no mistake, a quick look at the race runs shows very clearly that the W09 is a step ahead of the pack. I reckon the gap is about 0.4 seconds at the moment. Unless Mercedes has some dramatic chassis imbalance when the softer tyres get bolted on - highly unlikely - it is unquestionably on top.

    Watching at the very fast Turn 9 right-hander, Bottas carried an unbelievable amount of speed through the apex on the medium tyres, with fuel on board. In contrast, when watching either the Ferrari or the Red Bull on the long run, the drivers just didn't have the grip to carry the same speed through.

    The change of direction with the front end seemed to be a good step forward from last year. When you watch either Mercedes driver between Turns 2 and 3 or further around the lap in the final sector, they are able to change direction incredibly sharply when they have a sequence of corners. This allows them to just open up the line to the second part of a sequence and carry more apex speed than anyone else.

    This is particularly worrying for the opposition as the opportunities they had last year were on slower, twistier circuits. Clearly that area of weakness has been focused on and dealt with.

    From a power-unit standpoint, the driveability seems extraordinary. Not once do you hear of the drivers struggling for traction, despite trying to put an estimated 1000bhp onto the ground. Mercedes continues to be the gold standard in reliability terms, with an incredible 201 laps on the final day of testing to just drive the point home.

    For the sake of Formula 1 and the show, I really hope that Bottas can take the fight to Hamilton this year.



    Ferrari is closer to Red Bull
    The headlines from the last week of testing show that Ferrari and Red Bull shared the quickest times across the four days. But come qualifying in Melbourne, I think the entire paddock will be pretty shocked if anything other than a Mercedes is on pole position.

    Watching the Ferrari out on track, it's clearly a fast car. Last year in pre-season testing, it looked like an easier car to drive than the Mercedes, but this time around, every time the drivers try to lean on it a bit more and extract some more speed, it just doesn't seem to be there.

    At Turn 4, for example, Kimi Raikkonen would charge in and try to get the nose to bite, but it just doesn't dig in and pivot in the same way the Mercedes does. The rotation that they need mid-corner to get the car to turn while carrying the apex speed they want isn't there in the medium and slow-speed corners. Watching at Turns 11 and 12 showed the stark difference between the lazier Ferrari and the sharper Mercedes in changes of direction.

    Red Bull and Ferrari are very evenly matched but both need a big step forward with updates to catch Mercedes
    Red Bull looks like it has carried on its progression from the end of 2017, when the chassis was working brilliantly. It's hard to fault the RB14 in the slow and medium-speed corners, and the braking stability into T1 and T10 looked excellent.

    But in the faster corners the Mercedes still looks like it's got a bit of an advantage. When I looked at T9 on the race runs, I noticed Daniel Ricciardo had a much bigger lift than Bottas and, every time he would have a go at just a bit more apex speed, he would just run out of road.

    Red Bull's main weakness could still be in the power department. Renault seems to have made good progress on the reliability front, with some good testing mileage being banked by Red Bull and the works Enstone team. I hope that this means the power can be turned up a bit more in qualifying, but insiders still reckon Renault is going to be about 40bhp down on the Mercedes.

    On the whole, I would say that Red Bull and Ferrari are very evenly matched. They even did race runs at similar times of the day, which helped us see that they were close. Both need a big step forward with updates to catch Mercedes.



    Where will the other Renault teams slot in?
    McLaren has been the biggest talking point of the pre-season tests. All through the winter, Formula 1 fans around the world were praying that the switch to Renault power would allow Fernando Alonso and the team to be fighting at the sharp end once again.

    McLaren had a catalogue of reliability woes and, when the car was running, the team chose a strategy of testing with softer tyres than anyone else for most of the time, which made it hard to draw any conclusions about the MCL33's true pace.

    On the last couple of days we saw some long runs from Stoffel Vandoorne and some decent medium and short runs from Alonso, which confirmed that, on pace, McLaren certainly has the potential to be the fourth-best team.

    Is that enough for the Woking squad? That's a question that a lot of people in the paddock are asking. At the end of the day, it now has the same power unit as the Red Bull and has spent the past few years claiming it had the best chassis on the grid. The world should probably cut McLaren some slack for the first four flyaways, until it starts to gel properly with Renault. But from the Spanish Grand Prix (round five, in May) onwards, McLaren really needs to be matching Red Bull.

    McLaren looks like it has the potential to be fourth best. Is it a Red Bull-beater? I wouldn't put money on it yet
    At the moment, unless the team sorts out the reliability gremlins that have hurt it over the past two weeks, it isn't going to be racking up the points or getting the crucial running it needs on a race weekend to get the car set up right. What's been worrying for the team is that it's not just had the same issue again and again, but instead a whole variety of problems. There are clearly some installation issues, which are different from what the works Renault and Red Bull teams have - burned bodywork and holes cut into the engine cover were clear giveaways that all isn't well.

    Out on track, the car does look balanced and confidence-inspiring. Alonso certainly wasn't shy of throwing it around straight out of the box, and the car seemed to respond well. The front end tucked into the apex of the medium-speed corners such as Turn 7 very well and, while it didn't look as comfortable over the kerbs as the Mercedes (which was frankly like a limousine on a bed of air), it still looks like it has the potential to be fourth best.

    Is it a Red Bull-beater? I wouldn't put money on it yet.



    The works Renault team looks like a proper factory squad for the first time in years. It has two hotshots in the cockpit, solid funding and good people on board. The car looks balanced out on track and, apart from a gearbox glitch on the final day, generally has very good reliability.

    It's been a very impressive turnaround in the past 18 months - who can forget the woeful qualifying in Baku 2016 when the yellow cars were on the back row of the grid?

    Renault looks like it's at the sharp end of the battle for fourth with McLaren, and about half a second behind Ferrari and Red Bull. That's a good starting point for a team that's rebuilding, and I'm really interested to see how it progresses in this fight with its orange customer.



    Are there surprises in the midfield?
    For the past two years, Force India and Williams have locked out the 'best-of-the-rest' territory behind the top three teams. This could be a tricky ask for the two Mercedes customers this year, as Renault, McLaren and Haas all seem to be more competitive than in 2017.

    When watching trackside, the Williams looked unpredictable on corner entry, which is just confidence-sapping for the drivers. Sergey Sirotkin did look like he had a bit more consistency on the final afternoon before handing over to Lance Stroll, but the team has had a big design change and it looks like it needs a bit more time to understand how to get the most from the FW41.

    The Force India also looked very tricky to drive, but the team is counting on a big update for Melbourne so we're probably better off reserving judgement.

    On the penultimate day of testing, Kevin Magnussen produced a lap on supersoft tyres that made the entire paddock sit up and take note. When you applied the tyre offsets, the Haas suddenly seemed like the fourth-fastest car out there, which had the other midfield teams scrambling for the long-run sheets to gauge where the team really is.

    Out on track, the Haas did look like a very good and balanced car, so it could well throw a curveball to Renault and McLaren.

    Toro Rosso's Honda reliability has been the other big surprise. The team completed the third-highest number of laps, and out on track the front end of the STR13, particularly at medium and slow speeds, looked like it was working very well. I'm really interested to see where Toro Rosso is in the pecking order when engines are turned up for qualifying!
    THANK YOU SOO MUCH!! Really appreciate it, very greateful! I LOVE this FORUM!

  21. #681
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
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    Quote Originally Posted by mwk360 View Post
    Pretty much what most of the experts are saying and realistically predicting,looks like mercs are taking the championships easy this year. sucks lol If this is accurate than maybe Zike was right all along
    I agree that seems to be the situation after tests, but we don't know if the car is really slow/flawed, maybe it just needs a little setup or tweak to dial it in, or maybe in hot weather things change and start to work well together.
    That's what all the testing and aero racks are for, to get data and understand the car, let's wait and see what happens.
    I'm not jumping in joy but I will remain optimistic for now.

  22. #682
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    right that's it, i'm putting 1k on Merc winning wcc again this year

  23. #683
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ferrarichamp View Post
    right that's it, i'm putting 1k on Merc winning wcc again this year
    You are a smart investor

  24. #684
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    So the season didn't even started and we are already lost...
    Let's for a change wait a little bit before making any conclusions...

  25. #685
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    Quote Originally Posted by jgonzalesm6 View Post
    I agree. "tons" or "vast" amount of info in the safety dept. Was'nt Mekies the one that spearheaded the Halo????? That dreaded thong looking contraption that so many of us dislike or hate???? That's great!!!! Wonderful!!!!

    He's no Budkowski in which tons of technical (aero, suspension, PU, etc) info. passed through his hands which he will pass that info to Renault.
    From 20 September will arrive in Maranello and will answer directly to the technical director Mattia Binotto: Laurent, as a security specialist (he personally handled all the Halo files) is considered a great expert on homologation of the frames, an area around which interesting research fields have been reopened ...
    FERRARI FOR EVER !!!!!!!

  26. #686
    Join Date
    May 2014
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    Posts
    3,318
    Ferrari WCC for sure this season. F1 "Liberty" can't afford to let Merc win again. I believe Lewis will be happy with a few wins and a few more poles to add to his record. WCC is no big deal to him IMO.
    Max was driving a F1 car on a ski slope in the snow with chains on the tires! Kitzbuhel . Ferrari needs him !

  27. #687
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    May 2011
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    Experts what a joke they are almost willing ferrari to fail europe is in freeze mode and australia is frying in autumn there opinions are biased and negetive not one positive aspect has been mentioned about the ferrari unbelievable as we say down under fair go mate.

  28. #688
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    Quote Originally Posted by Silent Bob View Post
    Every year I try to pick the same spots around the Circuit de Catalunya at Barcelona to watch the pre-season tests. It's a great track to walk around and watch at close quarters because you can see a whole range of corners and areas where cars show their strengths and weaknesses.

    Fast corners, slow corners, changes of direction, braking and traction - they can all be judged by your eyes and ears and, pretty much every year, my list matches up with the lap times because there's nowhere to hide.



    F1 2018 might depend on Bottas
    Last year Ferrari looked like it was a real match for Mercedes in pre-season testing, and when we got to Melbourne that proved to be the case. This year, however, the Brackley squad seems to have taken another good step forward.

    Visually the car is a logical update on 2017's championship winner, but it's obviously had all the right changes to make it much more user-friendly. Watching Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas out on track, they are able to metronomically hit the same line lap after lap with remarkable consistency. And speed.

    Mercedes has been very smart about not showing its hand with the faster tyres, but make no mistake, a quick look at the race runs shows very clearly that the W09 is a step ahead of the pack. I reckon the gap is about 0.4 seconds at the moment. Unless Mercedes has some dramatic chassis imbalance when the softer tyres get bolted on - highly unlikely - it is unquestionably on top.

    Watching at the very fast Turn 9 right-hander, Bottas carried an unbelievable amount of speed through the apex on the medium tyres, with fuel on board. In contrast, when watching either the Ferrari or the Red Bull on the long run, the drivers just didn't have the grip to carry the same speed through.

    The change of direction with the front end seemed to be a good step forward from last year. When you watch either Mercedes driver between Turns 2 and 3 or further around the lap in the final sector, they are able to change direction incredibly sharply when they have a sequence of corners. This allows them to just open up the line to the second part of a sequence and carry more apex speed than anyone else.

    This is particularly worrying for the opposition as the opportunities they had last year were on slower, twistier circuits. Clearly that area of weakness has been focused on and dealt with.

    From a power-unit standpoint, the driveability seems extraordinary. Not once do you hear of the drivers struggling for traction, despite trying to put an estimated 1000bhp onto the ground. Mercedes continues to be the gold standard in reliability terms, with an incredible 201 laps on the final day of testing to just drive the point home.

    For the sake of Formula 1 and the show, I really hope that Bottas can take the fight to Hamilton this year.



    Ferrari is closer to Red Bull
    The headlines from the last week of testing show that Ferrari and Red Bull shared the quickest times across the four days. But come qualifying in Melbourne, I think the entire paddock will be pretty shocked if anything other than a Mercedes is on pole position.

    Watching the Ferrari out on track, it's clearly a fast car. Last year in pre-season testing, it looked like an easier car to drive than the Mercedes, but this time around, every time the drivers try to lean on it a bit more and extract some more speed, it just doesn't seem to be there.

    At Turn 4, for example, Kimi Raikkonen would charge in and try to get the nose to bite, but it just doesn't dig in and pivot in the same way the Mercedes does. The rotation that they need mid-corner to get the car to turn while carrying the apex speed they want isn't there in the medium and slow-speed corners. Watching at Turns 11 and 12 showed the stark difference between the lazier Ferrari and the sharper Mercedes in changes of direction.

    Red Bull and Ferrari are very evenly matched but both need a big step forward with updates to catch Mercedes
    Red Bull looks like it has carried on its progression from the end of 2017, when the chassis was working brilliantly. It's hard to fault the RB14 in the slow and medium-speed corners, and the braking stability into T1 and T10 looked excellent.

    But in the faster corners the Mercedes still looks like it's got a bit of an advantage. When I looked at T9 on the race runs, I noticed Daniel Ricciardo had a much bigger lift than Bottas and, every time he would have a go at just a bit more apex speed, he would just run out of road.

    Red Bull's main weakness could still be in the power department. Renault seems to have made good progress on the reliability front, with some good testing mileage being banked by Red Bull and the works Enstone team. I hope that this means the power can be turned up a bit more in qualifying, but insiders still reckon Renault is going to be about 40bhp down on the Mercedes.

    On the whole, I would say that Red Bull and Ferrari are very evenly matched. They even did race runs at similar times of the day, which helped us see that they were close. Both need a big step forward with updates to catch Mercedes.



    Where will the other Renault teams slot in?
    McLaren has been the biggest talking point of the pre-season tests. All through the winter, Formula 1 fans around the world were praying that the switch to Renault power would allow Fernando Alonso and the team to be fighting at the sharp end once again.

    McLaren had a catalogue of reliability woes and, when the car was running, the team chose a strategy of testing with softer tyres than anyone else for most of the time, which made it hard to draw any conclusions about the MCL33's true pace.

    On the last couple of days we saw some long runs from Stoffel Vandoorne and some decent medium and short runs from Alonso, which confirmed that, on pace, McLaren certainly has the potential to be the fourth-best team.

    Is that enough for the Woking squad? That's a question that a lot of people in the paddock are asking. At the end of the day, it now has the same power unit as the Red Bull and has spent the past few years claiming it had the best chassis on the grid. The world should probably cut McLaren some slack for the first four flyaways, until it starts to gel properly with Renault. But from the Spanish Grand Prix (round five, in May) onwards, McLaren really needs to be matching Red Bull.

    McLaren looks like it has the potential to be fourth best. Is it a Red Bull-beater? I wouldn't put money on it yet
    At the moment, unless the team sorts out the reliability gremlins that have hurt it over the past two weeks, it isn't going to be racking up the points or getting the crucial running it needs on a race weekend to get the car set up right. What's been worrying for the team is that it's not just had the same issue again and again, but instead a whole variety of problems. There are clearly some installation issues, which are different from what the works Renault and Red Bull teams have - burned bodywork and holes cut into the engine cover were clear giveaways that all isn't well.

    Out on track, the car does look balanced and confidence-inspiring. Alonso certainly wasn't shy of throwing it around straight out of the box, and the car seemed to respond well. The front end tucked into the apex of the medium-speed corners such as Turn 7 very well and, while it didn't look as comfortable over the kerbs as the Mercedes (which was frankly like a limousine on a bed of air), it still looks like it has the potential to be fourth best.

    Is it a Red Bull-beater? I wouldn't put money on it yet.



    The works Renault team looks like a proper factory squad for the first time in years. It has two hotshots in the cockpit, solid funding and good people on board. The car looks balanced out on track and, apart from a gearbox glitch on the final day, generally has very good reliability.

    It's been a very impressive turnaround in the past 18 months - who can forget the woeful qualifying in Baku 2016 when the yellow cars were on the back row of the grid?

    Renault looks like it's at the sharp end of the battle for fourth with McLaren, and about half a second behind Ferrari and Red Bull. That's a good starting point for a team that's rebuilding, and I'm really interested to see how it progresses in this fight with its orange customer.



    Are there surprises in the midfield?
    For the past two years, Force India and Williams have locked out the 'best-of-the-rest' territory behind the top three teams. This could be a tricky ask for the two Mercedes customers this year, as Renault, McLaren and Haas all seem to be more competitive than in 2017.

    When watching trackside, the Williams looked unpredictable on corner entry, which is just confidence-sapping for the drivers. Sergey Sirotkin did look like he had a bit more consistency on the final afternoon before handing over to Lance Stroll, but the team has had a big design change and it looks like it needs a bit more time to understand how to get the most from the FW41.

    The Force India also looked very tricky to drive, but the team is counting on a big update for Melbourne so we're probably better off reserving judgement.

    On the penultimate day of testing, Kevin Magnussen produced a lap on supersoft tyres that made the entire paddock sit up and take note. When you applied the tyre offsets, the Haas suddenly seemed like the fourth-fastest car out there, which had the other midfield teams scrambling for the long-run sheets to gauge where the team really is.

    Out on track, the Haas did look like a very good and balanced car, so it could well throw a curveball to Renault and McLaren.

    Toro Rosso's Honda reliability has been the other big surprise. The team completed the third-highest number of laps, and out on track the front end of the STR13, particularly at medium and slow speeds, looked like it was working very well. I'm really interested to see where Toro Rosso is in the pecking order when engines are turned up for qualifying!
    Are you Karun chandok ?

  29. #689
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    Ontario
    Posts
    1,388
    Quote Originally Posted by jpalmito View Post
    Are you Karun chandok ?
    Crap you've blown my cover. I was trying to keep a low profile so please don't spread it around.

  30. #690
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    Location
    France
    Posts
    190
    The same article word by word is on f1reddit, how could you say you are trying to keep a low profile?

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