Tag Archives: Korean GP

Lewis Hamilton: “We should be fighting with the World Champions at the front…”

Lewis Hamilton says that both he and Fernando Alonso are too good to be fighting over fifth place at the end of a Grand Prix.

Hamilton just held off his former McLaren team mate in Korea, but was unable to do anything about Nico Hulkenberg up ahead.

“It’s strange, you know,” he said. “Me and Fernando in fifth and sixth at the end, and having our own little race, we are of a higher calibre than that, we should be further ahead, and fighting with the World Champions at the front, and with Sebastian. I guess that just shows where the sport is today.”

Hamilton was clear frustrated with the way his race unfolded.

“It wasn’t that exciting for me. Going backwards and defending for a position is not so much fun, and when I was behind Grosjean at the start, that was it, there was no way to get past him. Those guys up ahead of us just had too much traction today, that’s really where I was losing out to everyone.

“The car was feeling pretty good, I was quick. If I was in the lead for example, I think I would have been able to stay there, apart from the graining phase that I went through. We were just not that quick on the straight, and things just didn’t go our way today.”

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2014 Monaco-New Jersey trip “almost impossible,” says Ferrari

Ferrari sporting director Massimo Rivola said today that the 2014 calendar will cause problems for the teams.

Like many F1 insiders Rivola, who still expects the final tally to drop from 22 to 20 races, believes that the unprecedented triple header of Monaco, New Jersey and Canada is a logistical nightmare. It’s the first time that a flyaway has ever been scheduled back-to-back with a European evemt.

“To be honest I’m still hoping we come back to the 20 races as per the current sporting regulation,” said Rivola. “We will see. At the moment the calendar is not the best calendar possible in terms of logistics. Even the first race in Australia, alone, is not ideal. From the logistics side I would prefer to stop and do a race in a back-to-back coming back from Australia. For sure there are some good commercial reasons behind this that I am not aware of but we will see. When the calendar is 100 per cent fixed we will manage it.”

Regarding the Monaco-New Jersey trip he said: “I can say that even for a top team it’s something almost impossible, to be honest, to be done. But as I said, we will see the real calendar and then we figure it out.”

Meanwhile Sauber team manager Beat Zehnder said: “Technically, it will be very difficult to have a back-to-back from Monaco to Jersey, because normally the freight will leave for Canada, let’s say, on the Saturday before the race. And so that’s why, if you’re only able to send your freight on a Monday or a Tuesday, it compromises your weekend quite a bit.”

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Christian Horner: “You’d be fairly stupid to introduce traction control…”

Christian Horner has refuted suggestions that Sebastian Vettel’s performance in Singapore was aided by a form of traction control.

Inevitably since the German’s dominant win paddock gossip has suggested that Red Bull has found an advantage, with former team boss Giancarlo Minardi recently adding to the debate after observing the cars on the Asian street track. In Korea today Lewis Hamilton dropped a less than subtle hint about his thoughts on the subject, while a clearly frustrated Vettel opted to joke about it being a feature on his car.

“The electronic controls on the car are so tightly governed,” said Horner. “It’s an controlled box that we have, the settings in both of the cars were absolutely identical, they fully comply with the FIA rules. The FIA should be able to verify that. It’s a standard unit which all of the teams are using. Any suggestion of traction control is either purely mischievous on behalf of the others, or wishful thinking.

“I think the problem is Sebastian’s performance was so dominant in Singapore it inevitably raised questions of how is that possible? Other teams will be looking inwardly, and the easiest conclusion to come too is they must be cheating. As I say these things are so tightly controlled that it’s impossible. The facts are he drove an incredible race in Singapore, he had incredible pace, he maximised the most out of the car, and was a driver on absolute peak form. Is it a distraction? No. Will we lose any sleep over it? Absolutely not.”

Horner denied that Renault has made a breakthrough with engine mapping that has aided RBR.

“Again that’s very restricted on what you can do with torque maps and torque curves. It’s something that all of the engine manufacturers are doing within the parameters allowed. I think that this engines are so optimised, they are so far into their life cycle, that all the engine manufacturers are pretty close. I don’t think one particularly has an advantage over the other.

“You can argue the same about a Ferrari start. Bottom line is that they get it all together and get everything right at that point, and you don’t hear any accusations of traction control. And I don’t believe it is.”

He added: “You’d be fairly stupid to introduce traction control onto a car that was governed by a single ECU that is through a tender of the FIA that is scrupulously checked by the FIA. I can’t imagine any team in the pitlane would entertain it.”

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