Nico Rosberg, Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Spa-Francorchamps, 2014

Mercedes don’t want title decided by reliability

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Nico Rosberg, Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Spa-Francorchamps, 2014In the round-up: Mercedes say they don’t want the drivers’ championship to be decided by reliability problems.


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Reliability must not decide title – Mercedes boss (BBC)

“We don’t want to have the spin that the championship was decided because one car let the driver down.”

Lewis Hamilton: I dreamed of victory in the Singapore Grand Prix (The Guardian)

Nico Rosberg: “From a team perspective unreliability is our weakness and we need to get to the bottom of it and try and improve on that.”

Nico Rosberg Q&A: I’m in agony after retirement (F1)

“I fumed in the cockpit, so I am already on the way to recovery now. I left most of the anger in the helmet!”

Long stint pays off for Massa (Sky)

“So just how did Felipe Massa make a set of tyres last 38 laps in the Singapore GP? ‘I was driving like a grandmother,’ joked the Brazilian after finishing a fighting fifth on Sunday night.”

Battery glitch hindered Ricciardo (Autosport)

“Probably before half-distance, we had an issue with the battery which would not discharge. It required quite a lot of management to try to help him out and the problem was intermittent.”

McLaren lose £155million whisky deal to F1 boss Bernie Ecclestone (Mirror)

Jenson Button: “I would not rather have to think about the only way I have a career next year is with a three car team. I like F1 the way it is.”

Marcus Ericsson Q&A (Crash)

“I think cost cutting would have been good for Formula One. I think that would have made the field more even and I think also for the fans it would be more exciting to see more teams evenly matched, even though the racing I think this year has been great in Formula One in general.”

Nico Rosberg: video message DNF Singapore 2014 (Nico Rosberg via YouTube)


Comment of the day

Does Jean-Eric Vergne’s run to sixth yesterday show he deserves to keep his place in F1?

Vergne did really well today. Those moves at the end and then the charge away from them to get a five-second gap was very impressive.

I’d love to see him get a seat – he was very competitive against Ricciardo last year.

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On this day in F1

The 1974 championship took another dramatic turn 40 years ago today as Emerson Fittipaldi took the lead in the points standings by winning the Canadian Grand Prix at Mosport Park.

Niki Lauda was leading with a dozen laps to go when he hit debris and crashed, ending his championship chances. But Ferrari team mate Clay Regazzoni took second and was still in the hunt, while Jody Scheckter retained an outside shot despite failing to score in the penultimate race.

Image © Daimler/Hoch Zwei

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Keith Collantine
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  • 45 comments on “Mercedes don’t want title decided by reliability”

    1. @McLarenF1 on Twitter: @McLaren_Soul We haven’t lost Johnnie Walker. Johnnie Walker remains an important & valued sponsor of ours.

      1. I noticed the Johnnie Walker logos remained on the car. They could do without losing another sponsor after the departures of Hugo Boss (to Mercedes), Lucozade and Vodafone in the last year.

        1. @deej92 Hugo Boss is very different from Puma, however, both make sport apparel, my question is: will they keep Puma?

          Puma seems very happy with Lewis caps.

      2. To another part of that Mirror link: did I read that vote right at the end of the article? Who wrote this?

        Who will win the F1 drivers’ championship this season?

        Lewis Hamilton
        Sebastian Vettel
        Daniel Ricciardo

        1. I saw that and (charitably) assumed it was an auto-generated poll they (maybe?) do after every race with the podium finishers as options.

          But red-top F1 coverage tends to be dreadful, so maybe they don’t deserve the benefit of the doubt…

        2. @hunocsi Exactly what I was going to comment.

          It is the mirror so it cannot be trusted anyway, but this is evidence to that.

      3. Is McLaren’s lack of pace starting to bit? That’s a lot of sponsors to lose..

    2. I don’t understand Manish Pandey’s tweet. Or at least the first part. The points system isn’t really what caused that situation, it’s just how the other driver has finished (or hasn’t) when they haven’t won the race. Don’t forget, Hamilton is still a retirement down. Granted both times Rosberg DNF’d Hamilton has won rather than 2nd like Rosberg (apart from Australia). Had the system reverted back to the previous scoring system then Hamilton would be behind at this point.

      The second part is potentially true. If they drivers remain close on points then the chances are the winner of the final race would like win with or without double points, or if they are far enough apart in the points then finishing second wont matter. I think DP will only affect the result if there’s a retirement or issue for one of the cars, otherwise it wont be an issue. Part of me hopes there is an issue, just so that it will definitely get dropped, but a bigger part wants it to have absolutely no effect. The idea solution is no effect and dropped but we’ll see.

      Also, if Ricciardo had that issue, how much time did it lose him? If it was losing him time, does that make finishing close to Vettel actually another impressive result?

      1. Good. I said before the season starts, that if the title is decided purely due to the double points rule, it will be a tainted win in my eyes.

        I just hope that who ever the winner is, they are the winner regardless (with or without) of the double points rule.

      2. Like you said, Lewis having an extra DNF justifies the 3 points difference. If Lewis had won at Spa, all things equal, he would be leading by 28. However, by winning at Spa he would have 8 wins vs. 4…

      3. That circumstance of imbalance between points and wins is not new in F1. In 2005, Raikkonen and Alonso had both 7 wins. Yet Alonso finished 21 points, more than two wins ahead of Raikkonen. And that’s because when Raikkonen won, Alonso was somewhere alongside him in the podium. But when Alonso won, Raikkonen had a smoking car or types failing left and right.
        IMO, it doesn’t have anything to do with the points system. It could happen in the previous 4 years as well. The double points is a completely different subject.

        1. @dimitris-1395 Indeed, I was wondering why it was included simple because of this. It leads me to believe it was only included because of the DP’s part of it.

      4. I think Manish is a little confused. There’s a big difference between benefitting from a dnf to win than benefiting from a dnf to manage 5th. It’s not the points system that does this, actually if anything this points system is an improvement.

    3. Felipe says all we need to know, with these tyres you get results by driving like a Grandmother ! Maybe the same Granny as a couple of years ago Mark Webber was alleged to have said could win races with these tyres.

      1. “driving like a grandmother”, actually what we have seen yesterday was Hamilton driving like a shark, putting together 20 qualy laps and getting 1.5 s/lap from vettel with super softs at the end of their life. As Toto Wolff said, “we saw the difference between star drivers and a superstar driver”

        1. Strange, I only saw difference between team with a great engine and, therefore, a huge potential regarding pace, and another great team with terrible engine.
          Toto may say whatever he wants. There is no need to hear nonsense from the team chiefs about their drivers.

          1. The point is still valid.

        2. Hamilton was driving on supersofts which are wel over a second a lap faster already. Also he was making a stop extra so he could extract the potential from the tyres in fewer laps and thus go faster per lap.

      2. Massa is just bitter. The tyres are almost perfect this year. There has been a good variety. Some races there are lots of stops with big variation in strategy with some drivers on the very edge, and in other races, strategy has taken a back seat to the action. There is many things to complain about in F1, but it isn’t tyres this year.

        1. He’s not bitter. He was joking, jeez, you don’t even need to read the article to know that, it’s in Keith’s highlight.

        2. I like the variety too. Complete contrast here with Monza. It seemed like the tyres were a bit showbiz, every battle was new tyres v worn ones – but that seems to be what’s needed to make an eventful race on the Singapore track.

          The real problem’s the aero that makes the cars so difficult to follow closely, and also covers the whole track with little twiddly carbon fibre parts when a wing falls off…

    4. Like Keith, I’d love to know what was behind that odd display in the Williams pit. Massa’s stop looked to be well executed, but that slap on the head to the right-rear wheel guy didn’t appear to be for a job well done.

      1. My impression is that he may have left the spare wheel gun in the path of Massa which may be a safety issue and potentially warranting a drive through.

        1. Also like to know this! The burning question after the race… what did that pit crew do to deserve a slap?

        2. Someone (Buxton?) asked and they said that it was friendly rivalry between team mates. The pit crew compete against each other by some measure or something.

          1. It did not appear ‘friendly’ though, and the guy who was hit did not appear very ‘amused’ either. (but of course we cannot see face expressions).

            1. @schooner @dc @coldfly Ted Kravitz said after the race that Williams had told him that there is rivalry amongst the wheel gun guys (wheelgunners?) and that whoever is slowest at the stop gets some friendly ribbing from the others and that is what happened. Whether that’s true or not, who knows.

            2. @iamjamm, thanks
              The weird part though in this instance is that the right-rear guy was the 2nd fastest and faster than left-rear – where the ‘slapper’ seemed to come from.
              Sequence was: left-front; right-rear, left-rear, wait, right-front.

      2. Maybe he’s leaving? Going to McLaren to replace the blue guy?

      3. According to the comments on the video it was because he did not hold the gun up high when finished. It is hard to see in the video because there is obstruction, but it does seem to make sense, he does hold it up but not as high as the opposite gunner. Taking into account the car bodywork in between it would be hard to see

    5. Reliability must not decide title – Mercedes boss (BBC)

      “We don’t want to have the spin that the championship was decided because one car let the driver down.”

      Too late!!!!!

      1. What’s even more bizarre, Toto wants to convince us that it’s now about “even”.

        By my count they have about 2 qualifying drop outs and one start failure to go and then it will be even.

        Not counting the DNF that Rosberg caused with his “racing incident” making a point.

    6. Anyone else notice they have changed the engine noise on the FOMA intro?

      1. i did notice that too!

      2. It’s been like that for a few races now, I think it changed at Spa.

    7. I was bit worried about Lewis now as checking his past history he had worse races with all things concerned at the finale of season
      Since 2007 he has finished
      2007 – 7th
      2008 – 5th
      2009 – DNF
      2010 – 2nd
      2011 – DNF
      2012 – DNF
      2013 – 9th
      He never won a race so far in last race and only been on podium once. Even if he went on to win the next 4 of 5 GP’s and retire or had a Worse race at Yas for what ever reason he need to be with in 31 Points gap to Nico assuming Nico finishes P2 in every race and wins the Yas GP.
      Not that its important but its a point we must not want to see as it clearly makes title decides on reliability

      1. Formula Indonesia (@)
        22nd September 2014, 9:31

        2007 – deserved podium finish
        2008 – quite fair
        2009 – a win or podium
        2010 – deserved
        2011 – 5th or 6th
        2012 – if no safety car then he will be 3rd, in fact Hulkenberg was faster than him, so 2nd
        2013 – bad move around Bottas but penalty was too harsh, probably 6th or 7th
        its not a perfect answer of Lewis last races but we will see, because Nico had inconsistent results in the last races of his seasons (well because he driving mid car too before Mercedes) talking about title decider, Massa had a spectacular end in 2008 last race yet he lost the title and probably will never be a f1 champion.

        1. @f1indofans You clearly watched a different 2012 Brazilian GP than the one I watched.

          1. Formula Indonesia (@)
            22nd September 2014, 10:14

            @tino852 no, Hamilton pit twice in changing conditions (Dry-Inter-dry) within while Button and Hulkenberg not, and they lead by 45 seconds (and even reach 50 seconds at Lap 23, and then safety car neutralises the advantage, and then Hamilton took the lead, Hulkenberg went to overtake unfortunately the backmarkers blocked their way and spoiled Hamilton race. he’s doing a great job but without that safety car, he would be behind Button and Hulkenberg. i watched this and I remembered at Lap 19 Hulkenberg passed Button and I dont see Hamilton until the safety car.

    8. I’d say in terms of performance, Mercedes are right on top. As for reliability, right towards the bottom.

      1. Torro Rosso maybe? Considering you are not counting Caterham or Sauber.

      2. As for reliability, right towards the bottom

        quite a bit of an exaggeration there @stigsemperfi, Lotus are firmly in that spot, with Sauber on their heels and STR not too far behind being challenged by Caterham as well for that. And lets not forget Red Bull is only better in reliability for one of their cars, although Ricciardo had issues with his battery during the race too.

    9. While I understand Nico’s pain. I don’t think he should be that much disappointed. Lewis has been 25+ points behind and Nico is only 3. If he wins the next race then he is back in the lead. The only difference now is that he is under more pressure. How he reacts will be interesting. The only other time he was behind in point was going into Monaco. I am fairly confident that he will put up a good fight. He is a good driver. I do however think LH will prevail in the end, barring any DNFs.

      1. I do however think LH will prevail in the end, barring any DNFs.

        So you explained his agony yourself. Rosberg really needed those points to have a realistic chance at winning the WDC.

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