Jenson Button, McLaren's 50th anniversary, 2013

Button won’t ‘do a Prost’ and start own team

F1 Fanatic Round-up

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Jenson Button, McLaren's 50th anniversary, 2013In the round-up: Jenson Button says he has no interest in setting up his own F1 team in the future.


Your daily digest of F1 news, views, features and more.

Jenson Button not tempted by idea of running his own Formula One team (The Guardian)

“My hero, Alain Prost, started a team in the late nineties and it didn’t work out for him. I remember speaking to him about what it was like and he said it was the most stressful time of his life ?ǣ even more so than racing with Ayrton Senna.”

Da Costa: pressure on to earn STR seat (Autosport)

“Now we know the chance is officially there and it’s all relying on my [Formula Renault 3.5] results.”

Ricciardo not a No.2 driver – Horner (ESPN)

“Both drivers will get the same opportunity and the same equipment, but inevitably there will be a natural pecking order determined by the driver who is in front on track.”

What’s it like to be Vettel’s team mate? (BBC)

Sebastien Bourdais: “[Vettel’s] main strength is he is naturally gifted and has awesome car control and that allows him to drive a car on the limit with oversteer (when the front of the car has more grip than the rear) all the time – and that tends to be the quickest way in Formula One.”

1988 Italian Grand Prix report (MotorSport)

“Having wafted past the Williams, the turquoise March suddenly found it tucked in behind, and next time round Schlesser was giving Gugelmin a hard time under braking for the first chicane, sitting it out with him, wheel to wheel! It seemed a pointless exercise as Schlesser was a lap behind the March and there was nothing to gain.”

Murray Walker looks back at 50 years of McLaren (McLaren via YouTube)


Comment of the day

Kimi Raikkonen to Ferrari next year? Don’t count on it says @Bullmello:

I would love to see Raikkonen at Ferrari next season, but don?t believe it will happen. Ferrari like Massa and have proved that for years now by keeping him for this long even if the F1 media disapproves.

There are big changes for F1 next season, keeping Massa alongside Alonso will be a constant in a season of change. They know what they have in Massa. Luca di Montezemolo has stated he would like to see Massa with Ferrari in 2014 even though he included his wish for better results.

Rehiring Raikkonen at Ferrari might make sense for scoring more points in the short term, but especially for someone like di Montezemolo, it would have to be choked down like yesterday?s wine. Not likely.

From the forum

Happy birthday!

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On this day in F1

Jack Brabham became drivers’ champion for the third time on this day in 1966. He retired with an oil leak seven laps into the Italian Grand Prix, but when closest title rival John Surtees’ Cooper suffered a fuel leak, Brabham was confirmed as champion.

Ferrari scored a one-two finish at home, Ludovico Scarfiotti leading Mike Parkes to the line.

Image ?? McLaren/Hoch Zwei

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  • 96 comments on “Button won’t ‘do a Prost’ and start own team”

    1. [Oversteer] tends to be the quickest way in Formula One.

      That’s interesting, I remember reading that due to the aerodynamics of an F1 car a car set up towards understeer is faster than a car that oversteers.

      1. I know that Schumacher also preferred an oversteering car as he could attack the corners aggressively.

        1. Michael Brown (@)
          4th September 2013, 22:42

          Actually Schumacher set up his car for understeer so he could use the throttle to steer the car.

          1. Whilst true that Schumacher preferred cars with a slight inclination towards under-steer, this was because it was the fastest set up for entering corners. Using the throttle to steer a car is easier if the car is set up for over-steer. What Schumacher was so good at was maximising entry speed with slight under-steer through to the apex of the corner where the balance transferred to neutral-steer and then use the throttle to induce slight over-steer to maximise corner exit speed.

      2. I can only tell you what I learnt from my videogame experience, and with understeer you need to slow down more to take the corner, whilst with oversteer you can tackle the corner at higher speeds and as long as you don’t spin on exit and don’t lift the throttle in order to do so, you go faster.

        1. Oversteer and countersteer is the fastest.

      3. I think the common consensus is understeer is easier to drive and kinder on the cars/tyres (if you run out of talent at speed, you just slow down), whereas oversteer is ‘theoretically’ faster because the car is more on the limit, more pointy, it changes direction easier and a driver can make sure the car is ‘where he wants’, providing he can handle it.

        1. I always thought that Vettel was so successful on the Pirellis because he set the car up with less oversteer than for example Schumacher or Hamilton… I guess I was wrong.

        2. Understeer will wipe out your front tyres in short order….but is safer (and slower)

          Pointy and having the reactions of a Ninja is the quickest way and that is NOT from a videogame,,,,

        3. That’s a very simplistic understanding of understeer surely. While oversteer helps you reduce the radius of the corner it also scrubs off speed. An understeering RWD car on the other hand allows you to apply more throttle to CANCEL out the understeer.

          Further, in fast corners, for a reason I don’t remember, the aerodynamics benefit from a car that understeer (downforce by definition creates a more understeery car anyway).

          Opposite lock might seem faster, but it really just scrubs off a lot of speed. With understeer you can turn in earlier, let the car understeer towards the apex, and then you can smother the throttle at the exit seeing as the rear will stick and balance out your sliding front.

          1. See, I think this is where the line is a bit blurred in F1.

            Yes, oversteer scrubs off speed, but if you can carry an extra 1-2kph into the corner, scrubbing only that as you turn in with oversteer, maintaining mid-corner and corner exit speeds, you gain time. The trick is to not scrub off excessive amounts of speed at this stage. Also, as you get the car pointing in the correct direction earlier, you can apply the throttle earlier. This is offset by a reduction in traction if the car’s oversteer hasn’t been completely corrected for at this time, which is why the oversteer is more beneficial earlier than in the mid to late corner.

            At least, his is how I understand why you get people like Schumacher, Senna and Hamilton being “above average”.

      4. Having a car set up to be oversteer biased enables you to use the throttle to aid in steering. It makes the car more difficult to drive, but if you are skilled enough, you can fine tune the slip angle of the rear end. Meaning you can have your front end pointing toward the corner exit earlier.

        A good example in road cars is front drive vs rear drive. Fwd cars require the driver to brake, steer, and then accelerate, with minimal overlap. If you brake too late, you understeer and miss your apex. Accelerate too early and you run wide on corner exit too early, requiring you to lift off the throttle, and losing valuable corner exit speed.

        Rwd cars will have more of a tendency to oversteer, so you can get on the throttle earlier, and if you can control your slip angle, preventing the rear end from sliding out too far, which washes off speed, you can exit the corner much faster.

        Obviously this is a very basic explanation. You can fine tune your car to oversteer on corner entry, enabling you to brake much later and still hit the apex. Mid and rear engined cars tend to do this naturally.

        With full control over suspension set up, you can get a fwd to oversteer, just as with poor set up, worn suspension, or excessive weight, a Rwd car will understeer. This all assumes a capable driver is at the wheel of course.

        I’ve even fine tuned the behavior of my fwd ae82 twin cam thrash about car. It understeers badly, being old and fwd, and having standard suspension, I couldn’t do anything with that, so I simply set my tyre pressures to 30psi front, 38psi rear, and the decreased contact patch of the rear tyres gave it a nice bit of corner entry oversteer. And yes, that made it much more fun :D …oh and faster yeah.

      5. Yeh apparently with the way the blown diffusers have worked recently the quicker cars have been setup to naturally understeer and get the most out of the rear grip in traction zones. You can see in Vettel’s driving style that he induces understeer in some corners and then floors it at an unconventional part of the corner knowing that the rear will grip, apparently Webber’s always struggled with that aspect of their car setup but Adrian says it’s the fastest way which is why they’ve developed in that direction.

        Lewis also has said some things this year about having a rear orientated car for the first time in F1 as he apparently prefers understeer (he’s just handy with the rear dancing), it seems though at the same time he’s been learning about how to drive cars with that kind of balance and at the same time has been much more appreciative of Vettel’s driving style as last year he said a lot about him missing apexes etc whereas now I believe he has a better understanding of exactly why Seb’s putting the car where he has and seems much more impressed by it.

    2. “Both drivers will get the same opportunity and the same equipment, but inevitably there will be a natural pecking order determined by the driver who is in front on track.” ~ Horner.

      Enough with this hypocrisy! RBR have been practicing it for the past 3-4 years, and now it seems they’ll continue to do so in the next few as well. :(

      P.S. I really can’t find a reason to congratulate poor Ricciardo for his move to RBR…

      1. I think Ricciardo knows what he’s doing, if he didn’t feel it would be the best move for him then he wouldn’t have done it.

        1. What other choice would he have? Either take one of the most sought after seats in F1, knowing that you’re almost certainly playing second fiddle to Vettel, or walk away from a Red Bull seat and the Red Bull Driver programme and into a highly competitive driver market, probably without any major sponsorship?

          I agree that he knows what he’s doing, he knows he’s going to be Seb’s understudy for a few years before Vettel leaves to join Ferrari or some other big team. He’s probably delighted to be well paid, pick up a fair few podiums, a few wins, bide his time an if he’s good enough when Vettel leaves (and Red Bull are still a force in F1 by then) he can be the main man. Felix da Costa might have different ideas by then however…

          1. Absolutely, can you blame him, Webber earned 10million euro this year while Ricciardio only earned 400,000 even if he only gets paid half what Webber did, thats still a 1200% increase in Salary, not to shabby really is it? And like you said, he’s going into one of the best seats in F1 at a young age, having been through the Young Drivers Program, he’s in good contention when Vettel moves on

            1. Wow. I’d never think of an F1 driver as being underpaid, but Daniel Ricciardo makes in a year what Gareth Bale will make in 10 days at Real Madrid! Crazy.

      2. @commendatore – Actually, what CH said is exactly what happened at Red Bull. MW and SV were on equal footing since 2009, MW had more experience and had been with RBR since 2007 when he beat DC. SV was only 21 and in his 2nd full season. Still, SV usually finished ahead in the pecking order, and has since grown while MW has either stagnated or declined (though he is still a fine F1 driver). Naturally, a racing team like RBR then backs the driver who is more likely to deliver results.

        1. I personally think it’s unlikely that DR would match SV, but if he does, then good for him, and he’d fight for wins or the title (depending on RBR’s competitiveness). If he doesn’t, then he’d at least get his chance when SV inevitably moves on, as @colossal-squid suggested.

      3. I’ve been quite cynical of Red Bull’s claims of driver equality for the past couple of years, but this time I actually believe Horner. Daniel is just as much Red Bull’s baby as Vettel is. They are both Red Bull’s discoveries (although Mario Theissen may dispute that claim) and have both come through the same program to reach where they are today. I can’t see why Vettel would get any unconditional favouritism. If Vettel does receive preferential treatment then it will be because he’s the stronger driver, but I’m sure the same rule applies to Dan if he emerges as the stronger driver next year (a long shot, sure, but you never know).

        So let’s give Red Bull a chance on this one. Give ’em until a few races into 2014 before we start beating up on them again.

        Personally, if I were in Marko’s position I’d be pushing to make Ricciardo the top dog. If his program managed to produce two different world champions on the bounce, then nobody would ever doubt him again…

        1. @jackysteeg

          If Vettel does receive preferential treatment then it will be because he’s the stronger driver (…)

          He’s a triple world champion, with 4th title on the horizon. Of course he’s the stronger driver and he will receive preferential treatment because of that. The new car will be developed primarily for him and his driving style. Riccardo will start the season on the back foot, so I doubt he’ll have the chance to “emerge”.

          1. @maroonjack – of course he stars the season on the back foot. All drivers joining a new team do! Why would they design the car to suit the needs of the new inexperienced driver who has only just joined ahead of the 3 (4..) time world champion?

            1. @petebaldwin
              Er… that’s what I said. Your point in repeating that was… what exactly?

              Because my point, if it wasn’t clear, was that Riccardo will be a number two driver from the get go. I was responding to a guy who believes they will be given equal opportunity and that Marko should even “push to make Ricciardo the top dog”. But they won’t be given equal opportunity, because that would be a disadvantage to Seb, and it wouldn’t be smart to disadvantage Vettel at this point.

      4. Poor old Ricciardo having to drive for the best F1-team of the last 4 seasons.. It’s his own choise really.

        It has nothing to do with being seccond fidle to Vettel either. If it was Kimi and he would lose to Vettel, people would say that Vettel was getting preferential treatment. If he was losing, people would say Vettel wasn’t really that good and he got a better treatment than Webber. The same applies now, Vettel wil off course be the teamleader, but can you really blame Red Bull? Do you expect Massa to be teamleader at Ferrari?

        It doesn’t mean that they won’t get equal chances, because Ricciardo is just as much a youngster of Red Bull as Vettel is so all the conspiracists who think that’s the reason Vettel is getting a preferential treatment over Webber, now haven’t got that excuse anymore.

      5. good point @commendatore

        I don’t know why the Red Bull fans who are always complaining & criticizing (even more than Massa ) Fernando’s n°1 status at Ferrari which was earned on the track since the first corner in his first ever GP with the Scuderia are now delighted for this statement made by CH and accepting that Seb will get preferential treatment (which i’m not against it BTW ) over his team mate because he is better than him
        Please the next time Ferrari will break Massa’s gearbox the only people that i don’t want to see talking about preferential treatment & sportsmanship are Red Bull fans (don’t take this as an insult or a repression to the freedom of expression every body is free to express his opinion & i’m no one to give moral lessons this is just a request !!!!)

        1. Red Bull have never asked a driver to move over for another just for the gain of one driver. They have asked both there drivers to stay put, for the sake of the team or the championship. Both of them ignored it and both of them have publicly said as much.

          There’s a huge difference between that and Massa having to move over from a winning position halfway through the season or Massa having to give up a good qualifying just because Fernando would get the clean side of the grid.

          The only thing Red Bull have done is give a wing to Vettel, wich Webber disliked. Vettel didn’t have any blame in losing his own front wing. Webber went on to win that race as Vettel had bad luck in the race with a puncture, so it didn’t mean Webber was dissallowed from winning. The only reason he was upset about, was because he could be.

          1. Red Bull have never asked a driver to move over for another just for the gain of one driver. They have asked both there drivers to stay put, for the sake of the team or the championship. Both of them ignored it and both of them have publicly said as much.

            Did you not watch last season in Brazil?

            1. Didn’t you watch the start of that same race??! Webber completely squeezed Vettel (he was totally entitled to in a normal situation, but not when his teammate is battle for championship in the last race) which led to him losing places and getting entangled with Senna.

              Secondly, He was indeed instructed to play rear gunner and this shows no favoritism: one driver could win championship for the team and the other couldn’t. It’s obvious that a team order should have been used.

              At any rate Webber was blatantly uncooperative, if not sabotaging and as both Horner and Seb said it was the main motive for Seb’s retaliation in Malaysia.

              This is totally different to Germany 2010, when a recovered Massa was on course to win the first GP after his horrific crash last year. It was mid-season and was no comparison to Brazil 2012. Massa never recovered from that pschological blow (the same way Barichello ever suffered from debacle of Austian GP).

            2. You don’t see me dragging in Brasil 2012 for Alonso do you? It is only natural that a driver of a team should help his team win championships, as Webber could not win the championship and could help his team. Anyhow, he actually made matters worse than that he helped.

              You would actually let Webber drive ahead of Vettel, risking losing the championship? You’d make a fool out of yourself. It’s not the same as not having equal chances.

          2. Exactly right RamboII.

          3. @RamboII

            I dont really think there was much difference between Massa asked to move over and Webber/Vettel asked to stay behind.. both were team orders as simple as that… and Silverstone 2010 was favoritism towards Vettel whatever way you look at it…

            Horner’s comment about equality I actually believe him… I expect Vettel to have an advantage over Dan in 2014 and he will get the preferential treatment when he establishes his superiority(which is quite natural) and I expect Dan to present more of a challenge to Vettel in 2015 when he is more experienced at the sharp end of the grid.. (provided RB remain competitive in the V6 turbo era)…

            1. Red Bull clearly said that whichever driver was leading the championship had preferential treatment. Yes, it just happened to be Seb.

              I may be wrong, but when the car was struggling in early 2012, Mark Webber was ahead of Vettel in points for a few races and got to try some new bits whilst Seb was stuck with a setup he didn’t get on with.

            2. No it is not. It’s not like the RBR-drivers haven’t tangled before. With a WDC at stake, they shouldn’t be fighting each other off the track. They didn’t want to help any of there drivers win the world championship, as they would otherwise have instructed Webber to let Vettel go, wich they didn’t in Malaysia.

              To compare, when do you think Alonso will be asked to stay behind Massa? Massa has been asked several times to not attack Alonso or even let him go, without the team scoring any extra points, pure for the benefit of Alonso.

      6. Spare pity of us Australians who have to live with more years of the media telling us that the Aussies car has been sabotaged. That said indicate where Webber has not had equal treatment at Red Bull. From what I can see Mark has been given a top car and not a Citroen. His race craft is pretty good. Problem is he seems to get confused when the lights go out. Now I have not being paying attention but can anyone say if Ricardo can get off the line like a normal driver. Or do Australians have a gimp left foot. Being partnered with the best current driver in the best current team will do Ricardo wonders as he will learn more than he would from any other team. Lets face it, he will be in a better place to stop Vettel domination than any other driver. But in takes time. We will have to wait until 2015 to find out.

      7. I don’t think that is too far from the truth. They do have a umber one driver that has more support but I don’t think they care who the driver is. Vettel is their champion and he’ll certainly get more attention from the team but if Ricciardo starts outperforming Vettel despite being number two (it can happen), Vettel’s status can change quick. After all Red Bull as a business care the most for their brand image, not the well being of their drivers. For a good image they need a star driver for their cars and if Ric turns out to be better than Vettel he’ll become a star overnight and more popular than Vettel at that.

        1. Didn’t you watch the start of that same race??! Webber completely squeezed Vettel (he was totally entitled to in a normal situation, but not when his teammate is battle for championship in the last race).

          Secondly, He was indeed instructed to play rear gunner and this shows no favoritism: one driver could win championship for the team and the other couldn’t. It’s obvious that a team order should be used.

          Anyway Webber was blatantly uncooperative, if not sabotaging and as both Horner and Seb said it was the main motive for Seb’s retaliation in Malaysia.

          This is totally different to Germany 2010, when a recovered Massa was on course to win the first GP after his horrific crash last year. It was mid-season and was no comparison to Brazil 2012. Massa never recovered from that pschological blow (the same way Barichello ever suffered from debacle of Austian GP).

          1. I have no idea why this comment was posted here as it was meant at @ramboii about brazil 2012.

            My apologies!

            1. It’s OK. I totally agree with your comment and I think they’ll try to avoid similar “incidents” occurring next year. Hence they chose Ric.

        2. Finally somebody who understands that Red Bull is a business owned by a billionaire and Vettel is a pawn (ok maybe a knight) in his game. Drivers don’t rule a team the same way footballers don’t run the club and actors don’t direct the film, no matter how big of star they are!

      8. If Red Bull had taken Raikkonen instead of Riccardo, then people would be praising Horner’s comments as a model of integrity. As it stands, Red Bull took Ricciardo instead of Raikkonen, and Horner is being condemned for thinly-veiled hypocrisy.

        I don’t think that’s particularly fair on Ricciardo.

      9. don’t think so – Malaysia they told Vettel to stay behind Webber – they could have easily pitted Webber one lap later if they wanted to give the win to Vettel. The only 2 instances of unfair treatment early in a season are Turkey and Silverstone 2010 – Vettel was favored in both but I can’t remember if it happened again in a similar fashion.

        imo, RB handles it just like McLaren or Mercedes – early in the season both have an equal opportunity and when it comes to the end the driver in front will have an advantage. Just like CH said.
        So I’d assume RIC will play #2 in 2014 because he’ll need time to find his way and Vettel will pull away. 2015 could be completely different though.

        1. imo, RB handles it just like McLaren or Mercedes – early in the season both have an equal opportunity

          You must have been asleep on the first races of this year, or … on another planet

          1. not sure what you mean – the link confirms pretty much what I said – Webber wasn’t asked to give up the place but they gave the order to hold position.

      10. I have no doubt that Red Bull has a #1 policy but, IMHO, Vettel earned it. He’s not #1 driver at Red Bull because he’s nicer or cooler than Webber. Red Bull picked Seb because he’s faster than Web.

        The problem for RIC is, he’ll get in there with this long running and successful policy so team doesn’t hae much of an incentive to change it. 2014 is still hard to predict and if they fail to win, they’ll be more open to different approaches.

      11. Sorry but you have you the wrong word. They are not hypocrites for saying that.

        However you could say they were liars, there are a few instances where Mark seems to have been given lesser treatment and on occasion parts, however it is marginal.

      12. Everybody in F1 talks like this. I’ve seen Ross Brawn, in between ordering Rosberg to move over for Hamilton, insisting there there is total driver equality at Mercedes. For some reason that sort of thing does not draw a storm of criticism over “hypocrisy”.

    3. Daniel (@collettdumbletonhall)
      4th September 2013, 1:50

      That was unusually normal tweet from Hamilton. I really try to like him but his twitter feed is just awful, full of arrogance and it all feels so contrived rather than spontaneous as Twitter is supposed to be for most people.

      1. I agree, those comments from Sutil about Lewis being immature don’t seem so far fetched do they?

        1. I don’t really understand why they can’t just meet up , sort the issue and get on with it .

        2. When it comes to Sutil’s comments I really think it’s a pot-kettle situation.

      2. I didn’t realize there was an apparent set of rules for twitter use…

        1. Daniel (@collettdumbletonhall)
          4th September 2013, 18:55

          Don’t be facetious. What I mean is that Twitter is usually so interesting because everything is spontaneous but with him it just seems like all he goes on about is how great he is, that’s it. A hashtag on his twitter last week when talking about himself was “#Bestthateverdidit”

      3. Maybe his spontaneity is revolting by our own standards . But , hey it’s his life . If you feel tatoos and rap are disgusting , then don’t look at the feed . As simple as that . But that does not make me hard to like him on track .
        To each their own
        Alonso – samurai
        Hamilton-Rap music tatoos
        Raikonnen-snowmobile racing ?
        Vettel – he doesn’t thing you’d care a damn what he does in his free time ( a different approach )

        1. Daniel (@collettdumbletonhall)
          4th September 2013, 18:56

          I don’t care about his tattoos, I didn’t even know he had any nor do I mention them.

      4. Agreed, I like the guy as a racer but his tweets about god are really annoying.

        1. Did I read a completely different tweet? The guy said “he is doing simulator work preparing for the weekend race” .. I am astonished to see some people got offended with that … unbelievable…

          1. Me too.

            As ive always said, people need a reason, they will find a reason.

          2. @puneethbv eum… some of his other tweets not this one… He tweeted one time at the chappel god is so great i am so blessed blabla stuff like that…

            1. @deurmat I think you have read it wrong, most have said we are blessed not specifically him. And he has constantly said in interviews in the past he feels very lucky to have what he does and do what he does.

            2. @georgetuk

              Good morning!!! Best view to wake up to. #godslight #rise&shine #bestday #godisthegreatest

              His twitter discription his this in it:

              God comes 1st…

              It’s ok if u r naive and believe in god but keep it to yourself, especially when you are a famous person.

            3. @georgetuk @puneethvb

              Chillin with @professorgreen who’s come to watch his first F1 race. #blessed #privilaged #badassmotha

              Here he hashtags that he is “blessed”, “privilaged”… Why would “god” bless him and leave the people die in for example Syria…

            4. @deurmat Glad you have the spare time on your hands. But i still read that he feels blessed and privileged not that he is actually blessed directly by his God.

            5. Yea eum, so I am a Hamilton fan. And to find these “tweets” I just opened twitter and they were on his front page, so that took me about 30 seconds. If you were a Hamilton fan and followed him like I do you would have seen the tweets and I wouldn’t have to go look them up for you. I like the Hamilton the racer, not Hamilton the preacher, but I deal with it.

          3. Daniel (@collettdumbletonhall)
            4th September 2013, 18:58

            It’s not that tweet that is annoying. It’s constant bragging, arrogance and false modesty that get on my nerves. Trying to appear like a really deep person which is so contrived. He may be complex and deep but he’s actively trying to appear that way which is odd.
            For the record, that tweet is fine, good.

        2. I think they’re pretty LOL-worthy but good for him for being all god-loving in public. It’s a pretty rare thing amongst the (non-brazillian) drivers.

          It’s really easy to unfollow people that bother you.

      5. @collettdumbletonhall reading this particular tweet, I don’t get your point. Like the “hip hop adage” says: “haters gonna hate” :)

        1. Daniel (@collettdumbletonhall)
          4th September 2013, 19:03

          No, this tweet is fine, I said it was “an unusually normal tweet” by his standards. Usually he’s incredibly annoying on twitter because for him it’s just an opportunity to brag about his life the whole time in a really staged way.
          Also, I am not a hater as I thought I made clear, I want to like him but he is just so annoying.

      6. Maybe there has been a couple of mis-steps but largely I find it interesting and pretty cool stuff he does. That said if you don’t like his kind of stuff then you won’t like it, and in which case no need to follow.

    4. Here is one for the the alternative history buffs.

      At the end of 2007 Alonso, having burned his bridges at McLaren, was looking for a new drive. His first choice was Ferrari, but they did not have an opening at the time, so he looked around at several other teams for a one year deal while he waited. (As it turned out it was two years before he was able to move to Ferrari, but nobody knew that at the time) Among the teams he discussed terms with was Red Bull. They were naturally interested in gaining the services of a two time champion, but they wanted to sign Alonso to a long term deal and he wanted a one year gig. And the rest, as they say, is history.

      But it’s interesting to speculate about what might have been if Alonso had signed a four or five year deal with Red Bull at the start of the 2008 season. How many titles would Alonso have today? Would Vettel have ever made it to Red Bull? When? Would the result have been a repeat of Hamilton and Alonso at McLaren? If not to Red Bull what team would Vettel be with today?

      The other point of this little story is, while in 2013 everybody and his dog “knows for a fact” that Adrian Newey is The Greatest Genius In The Whole History Of F1, this “fact” was very, very far from obvious in 2007-08.

      1. @jonsan Well he had the chance, apparently. Could by a five-times champion already…

      2. The other point of this little story is, while in 2013 everybody and his dog “knows for a fact” that Adrian Newey is The Greatest Genius In The Whole History Of F1, this “fact” was very, very far from obvious in 2007-08.

        It’s funny when you look back at your past decisions and you realize that a single word or signature would have taken you to whole different route with much better returns…

        Now it’s obvious that Alonso picked the wrong car but one year ago most of us thought Hamilton has made a mistake. Maybe Ferrari will dominate 2014 onwards… maybe

        1. Now it’s obvious that Alonso picked the wrong car

          Only if you focus on this season. 2010, Alonso was leading the championship all the way to the final race. Without Ferrari’s tactical error, he’d have been the 2010 champion.

        2. Newey or not – every driver wants to win with Ferrari. If he had gone to Red Bull, perhaps that chance would never have come. Whatever, he NEEDS to win at Ferrari and soon.

      3. You only have to look at Newey’s track record relative to other teams between 2000 and 2008 to see that his name probably wasn’t a big draw back then.

        1. Exactly, the 2005 McLaren was the only truly competitive car he produced from ’00 to ’09. Come to think of it, McLaren’s form improved significantly the year after Newey left the team, with Alonso himself at the wheel.

          There was little to suggest back in 07-08 that RedBull would become the force they have been over the last few seasons. Perhaps not that they are so competitive but how much McLaren and Ferrari have fallen back in comparison.

      4. The other side to that is had Alonso gotten his way pre-season in 2007, McLaren would not promoted Hamilton to the race seat. With a team mate who would, more than likely not have been as much of a challenge to him, and given that he was in good form in 2007, he could have won the championship then and in 2008.

        The decision to hold out for Ferrari was probably the most sensible thing for him to do mind you…in 2007-2008 pretty much every driver on the grid would have torn your arm off for a chance to get into a seat at Ferrari or McLaren. No one could have predicted how much the rule changes in 2009 would have flipped the grid around and how strong Red Bull would become in this new era.

      5. Here’s what I think would’ve happened, Alonso and Webber in RBR for 2008 in a very uncompetitive year but they would’ve stayed for 2009, meanwhile Vettel gets yet another year at Toro Rosso.
        Alonso challenging for the title in that year but ultimately loosing to the superior Brawn.

        In 2010 Weber gets sacked and Vettel comes in, Alonso again gets a very competitive teammate again and creates a self destructing environment in RBR, the team wins the WCC but Hamilton wins another title.
        In 2011 with a vacant seat at Ferrari Alonso moves and Vettel dominates and wins his first title, Buemi or Weber get the other seat.
        So there you go, maybe Alonso would have 5 titles maybe not but it’s always fun to speculate isn’t it?

    5. I actually miss former drivers trying their hand as team owners… I would love to see a Schumacher GP, or a Button F1 something along those lines

    6. Running a team seemed to work out nicely for Jackie Stewart!

      1. Well the Stewart and Prost teams were started for fundamentally different reasons. Stewart was Ford’s way back into F1 as a works outfit. They leveraged Stewart’s name and legacy to help fund the team and get it going. Once he got it going and it was reasonably successful Ford took the reigns (as Jaguar, which it owned at the time), Stewart apparently made a fair few quid out of the deal and Ford set about undoing all of his good work!

        Prost on the other hand was an exercise in national pride. The aim was to resurrect Ligier and create a “French national team” (French chassis, engine, sponsors, drivers, team boss etc) to challenge the world. (see this quite good article on it: I remember watching a recent-ish interview with Prost in which he said that attaching his name to the team was forced on him by the French money men and he regrets the decision. He said if he was starting the project again today he would have called it something like “Equipe France”. I can’t find the link, but it should be somewhere on YouTube.

      2. not sure they would fully agree. Was very stressful for him and his son(and im sure rest of family esp when Paul was ill).

        99 was great for them but 98 was not, 97 was ok because of monaco and it being their ‘first year’. They were under massive pressure to perform. Despite them being light years ahead of any of the current new teams, in a time when getting up to speed should be harder as there was less restrictive rules.

        1. Don’t get me wrong, the Stewart’s worked very hard on the team and they thoroughly deserved their success. However, they did have massive backing form Ford which made them a de facto works outfit from the get go. Any comparison with the teams which joined F1 in 2010 is unfair by comparison.

      3. It worked for Bruce McLaren…

        1. +1
          It also worked for a fella named enzo ;)

      4. But he had his son Paul – already a successful team owner in F3 to start the process, and it is also significant that when Paul got cancer and stepped down, the Stewart/Jaguar team took a downward path from which it never really recovered unlike Paul, who thankfully did.

        I am not surprised that Prost failed as a team owner – his divisive style very much reminds me of Alonso, but what DOES surprise me is that he is somewhat Button’s hero, although the driving styles are very similar.

    7. “Ricciardo not a No.2 driver – Horner”

      Give it a rest Christian. You aren’t fooling anyone!

    8. Well Antonio, it’s good to know you want to land the seat through good results. Don’t relax man, go for it.

    9. I feel pretty bad for old SeaBass. I feel like he never really got a proper opportunity to develop as an F1 driver. If you look at his record in ChampCar and in sportscar racing, it’s clear to see he’s a very decent driver who should have been able to carry at least some of his success over to F1. Of course, it wasn’t very fortuitous ending up as teammate to arguably the best driver of the generation, which was always going to put him somewhat in the shadows. And being a sensitive soul I think it would naturally have got to him that Toro Rosso was so firmly behind their new protégé instead of giving him the kind of nurturing support that he needs.

      I know even with the best will in the world, he was never likely to be a world champion, but I do feel like he should have been able to give a better account of himself. It’ll always seem like a bit of a wasted opportunity to me.

      1. Just a burning question that I haven’t found answers to:

        Is Bourdais the only driver to actually wear spectacles in the F1 car? My recent memories are rather foggy as TBH, I really didn’t pay much attention to him.

        1. As far as I can remember, yes. Jacques Villeneuve was the only other driver I could think of who wore glasses in the paddock, but he used contacts for the race.

        2. MSC used contact lenses at least in his 2nd career.

      2. I get the impression he was impressed by how Vettel managed to get on with the car (be B-spec from mid season).

        I certainly agree with this part:

        “In the race, he was always very aggressive, even with his team-mate.

        “But if you see an opportunity and you know you can make it stick, you’ve got to go for it, that’s why you’re getting paid. You have to try and finish as high as you can.

        “If it turns out to be a disaster, and big carnage, that’s different, but as long as you can make it work, it’s worth the risk. So I’m not surprised that he always goes for it. He’s wants to win. That’s what makes him a champion.”

        (bold from me)

    10. “but inevitably there will be a natural pecking order determined by the driver who is in front on track.”

      Of course unless Vettel is the one behind, in which case, he’ll completly disregard team orders and do what he wants.

      1. A “natural pecking order” would not be one imposed by team orders. Arguably, by rebelling against his team’s instructions in Malaysia Vettel allowed the “natural pecking order” to be realised, or at least something closer to it than we might otherwise have seen had he played the lapdog.

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