F1 Fanatic round-up: 9/6/2010

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The Canadian Grand Prix preview is coming your way later today. In the meantime here’s today’s round-up:


Force India rebuff Lotus over technical director (Reuters)

Vijay Mallya: “Mark [Smith] will stay with us until April 2011 and we will, in due course, announce a structure that will take us to the next level of performance. I’m very comfortable with where we are as a team and where we are going.”

Mallya?s odd views (Joe Saward)

“This makes no sense at all. Smith has been named as the technical director of Lotus Racing and is expected to join the Norfolk team after the statutory six months of ‘gardening leave’.”

Todt: Tyre choice down to FIA, FOM (Autosport)

“[The FIA] will soon launch a tender [for the tyre contract], with the commercial promoter of the championship, Bernie Ecclestone. FOTA may suggest that it decides, but the strong man is not he who speaks the loudest.”

Comment of the day

Tim has some interesting observations on Vitantonio Liuzzi’s decision to switch chassis for this weekend’s race:

There was, of course, the infamous account of Nigel Mansell?s time alongside Alain Prost at Ferrari. Prost thought that Mansell?s chassis was better and convinced the team to secretly switch them over, chassis plates and all. Mansell claims he only found out when he drove the car, felt it was somehow different and confronted his mechanics.

Of course this has all happened before ?ǣ the reason it has become such a big deal now is because Michael Schumacher did it first and Mercedes used the damaged chassis to explain away some of his performance issues in the first few races.

F1 chassis are stronger than they have ever been, but they still suffer damage as well as normal wear and tear. Carbon fibre is not particularly easy to repair either ?ǣ you can?t simply weld or bolt a new bit on as you could do with an alloy chassis.

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to Stevo!

On this day in F1

Lewis Hamilton won the first pole position of his F1 career at Montreal on this day three years ago.

He traded fastest times with team mate Fernando Alonso in qualifying for the Canadian Grand Prix.

Alonso was poised to beat Hamilton with his last effort having gone quickest through the first two sectors. But a mistake in the final sector left Hamilton on pole position and Alonso second.

The following day Hamilton converted the pole position into his first F1 victory.

Read more: Canadian Grand Prix 2007 qualifying ?ǣ Hamilton?s first pole position

Author information

Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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  • 21 comments on “F1 Fanatic round-up: 9/6/2010”

    1. As an employeer it’s just astonishing that another employeer claims someone that want to leave for another competitor should stay on for a very long time.
      Once I find out a employee no longer wants employment with us we arrange for a release. Depending on circumstances and feelings said employee might be released immediately (even if I might be forced to pay said employee for a short period of time) or they might be allowed to stay on for as long as they requested or contractual agreement might hold said employee in place for a bit longer IF circumstances so warrant it.
      In this case with Smith and FI to me it just makes very little sense at all to keep him on at all. If there is a contract I might for spit keep him on but in a position where he is of no importance if possible just to delay his release and entry into the new team. Which would probably mean until Sep or so which means he wouldn’t with the gardening leave rule wouldn’t be able to assist at the new team until March this way he wouldn’t be able to do any work at all on the new car until it’s time to go race for 2011. But would have to be very careful on his access and what type of work said person is doing so he wouldn’t be able to cause any problems on current car but especially on next years car and not gain any knowledge on next years car.

      1. I thought along the same lines as you did. The only case where it would make sense for Smith to do his current job (until the end of this season) would be if both sides agreed on it, but that would mean FI risks giving a lot of knowledge.
        But it would be a little bit similar as with James Key going to Sauber, there was no real gardening leave at all.

        It is possible, that Smith has a contract enabling him to finish no earlier than April 2011 (a year after taking over from Key?) and might even enjoy helping the team onward. Or he will stay that long and just fade to the background during the next months as FI leaves him in the team only in name.

    2. Interesting comment from Todt, although highly unwelcome.

      The teams have been trying to agree a tyre deal for months. If he thought it was taking too long, why wait until now, then put it out to tender, which only delays the decision?

      The FIA and FOM, if they are the “decision makers” Todt says they are, should have been sorting this out some time ago, such as… oh, I don’t know….

      When Bridgestone first announced they were leaving, for example.

      1. If he wants to put out a Tender, he should have done that at the start of the year.

        But i think actually at the moment Bernie is responsible for getting the tyres to the teams (he pays for them, or in this case agreed with Bridgestone to supply for free). And Bernie brought Avon to the table, spicing up and speeding up discussions and bringing Michelin to make an offer and Pirelli to get into that as well.
        All the time the FOTA and surely Bernie as well were discussing the possibility of staying with Bridgestone.

        The FIA should have no say into what tyre supplier gets the go (they do not have to race and work with them, and its not their money).
        Todts only influence should be in defining a control tyre or opening up to competition and development and technical/safety specifications.
        I think this is just a political statement to show he has Influence and maybe has something to do with the contracts being negotiated now.

        1. They did put it out to tender a while ago and got zero response, because they were asking the tyre supplier to pay them. I think this is just a bit of face saving and legal formality, since the FIA are in charge of the rules. I suspect the tender conditions will be 100% in line with Pirelli’s offer so that they can just accept at their previously agreed price where as no other supplier can…. I even doubt if anyone else would even bother submitting a price.

    3. Happy Birthday too Stevo!
      Oh Oh OH NO! ….. I forgot to tell Keith it’s my birthday!… *sad face*

      On another note! Tim makes a good point!

      1. Happy Birthday to both Stevo and Mike then.

        I’d like to announce I’ve been appointed the Interim Technical Director at Lotus.

        But I can’t.

      2. Happy birthday to you too then Mike!

      3. Happy birthday to you Mike and Stevo!

      4. Sush Meerkat
        9th June 2010, 9:58

        Happy birthday Mike and Stevo!.

      5. Ned Flanders
        9th June 2010, 11:24

        Happy birthday Mike!

        1. You know, I had a bad day… This actually makes me feel better…. thanks guys

    4. Is the Canadian GP preview on the ITV site by your hand again Keith?

    5. Edward Marshall
      9th June 2010, 9:49

      Tender = bad idea!

    6. Excited for this weekend!

    7. Its called Gardening leave. He may still be contracted to FI but may not work for them all that time.

    8. Happy Birthday!

    9. Here’s a post I know many of you have been waiting for for a long time: The F1 Fanatic Forum is back!

    10. “Parts of Canadian track resurfaced”


      Anyone remember Brundle’s comment about “pikeys”? :D

    11. Why has Horner not said it was wrong before?


      Maybe we might see the team coming apart with Horner supporting Webber and the Marko/Mateschitz camp rallying for Vettel the next time something happens?

      1. I strongly doubt it. Horner knows which side his bread is buttered.

    Comments are closed.