Alfa Romeo expected penalty for Stroll’s “not very nice” move on Bottas

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In the round-up: Alfa Romeo expected Lance Stroll would be penalised for running Valtteri Bottas wide in the Australian Grand Prix

In brief

Alfa Romeo expected Stroll would be penalised for running Bottas wide

Alfa Romeo expected that Lance Stroll would receive a time penalty after Valtteri Bottas appeared to be pushed off track while attempting to pass the Aston Martin late in the Australian Grand Prix.

The pair were fighting over ninth place after the Virtual Safety Car for Max Verstappen’s retirement, when Stroll defended from the Alfa Romeo who was attempting to pass around the outside of turn three, running onto the grass and losing a place to Pierre Gasly. The stewards noted the incident but did not investigate it.

Alfa Romeo’s head of trackside engineering, Xevi Pujolar, said the team felt the move was worth of a time penalty.

“We were expecting him to get a penalty, because it was not very nice what Stroll did,” Pujolar said. “But the decision was no penalty. It was not a frustration for us, but we believe that he was pushed out.”

Mazepin’s £87.8m Sardinian villa seized

Italian authorities have seized a property in the island of Sardinia owned by former Formula 1 driver Nikita Mazepin and his father Dmitry as part of sanctions imposed by the European Union against Russia resulting from the country’s military invasion of Ukraine.

Reuters reported that the villa, worth an estimated $114.45 million, was seized by Italian police earlier this week.

Mazepin was contracted to race with Haas this season after contesting his rookie season in F1 with the team last year. After the Russian military invasion of Ukraine, Haas cut ties with Mazepin and his father’s company, Uralkali, who were title sponsors of the team.

Palou confident Penske will be caught as year progresses

Reigning IndyCar champion Alex Palou says he believes Penske’s rivals will catch up to the team as the rest of the season unfolds.

Penske drivers occupy three of the top four places in the championship after three rounds, with Scott McLaughlin and Josef Newgarden winning the opening three races.

After finishing third at Long Beach, Palou says Penske will be challenged by rivals Ganassi and Andretti as the season progresses.

“They did an amazing job at the start of the year,” said Palou. “The same way we started really good the past year, they started really good this year I think with the three cars they have.

“That’s going to change soon. I don’t know if next race or if two, three races, but that’s going to change, and we’re still there. Everybody is talking that they’ve won three races, but I think we are only 15 points away of them. We are always there. We are trying the best. We got already two podiums this season, so yeah, I’m feeling confident.”

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Comment of the day

The Australian Grand Prix may not have produced a fight at the front as the opening two races of the season did, but @Sbewers saw plenty to enjoy over the 58 laps around Albert Park…

I very much enjoyed that race. Great to see Melbourne back on the calendar and a track where you don’t necessarily need a lot of overtaking to have an interesting grand prix.

We need to move away from measuring how good a race is purely on overtaking metrics. The art of defence is equally thrilling and being difficult (but not impossible) to overtake is what gives us those top-drawer moves like Checo on Lewis at the fast chicane. I’ll take moves like that over 100 DRS passes any day.
@Sbewers

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to Amy, Ben Thomas and Kyle Puttifer!

On this day in motorsport

  • 40 years ago today the FIA disqualified Brazilian Grand Prix winner Nelson Piquet and second-placed Keke Rosberg from the race, ruling the Brabham and Williams drivers cars’ had run underweight, and handing victory to Renault’s Alain Prost

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  • 24 comments on “Alfa Romeo expected penalty for Stroll’s “not very nice” move on Bottas”

    1. Great cotd.

    2. COTD – couldn’t have said it better myself. I thought the overall overtaking difficulty was just about right in Melbourne. I can only assume criticism of the race is influenced by domination at the front.

    3. They’re really not going to try a race without DRS are they? All talk of ability to follow more closely seems gone. Can we assume it isn’t working?

      1. @darryn It’s working very well I’d say. It was evident in Melbourne just how much closer these cars were able to follow each other.

      2. All talk of ability to follow more closely seems gone. Can we assume it isn’t working?

        I’m surprised you say/ask this. The following closely is working exceptionally well.
        It’s just amazing this year how cars can stay close behind another car in the curvy bits.
        Of course if a car ahead is faster then it will still drive away and create a gap.

      3. @darryn Perhaps Red Bull Ring & Interlagos Sprints. These would be good choices.

        1. RandomMallard
          12th April 2022, 19:39

          @jerejj Absolutely agree with the idea of holding Sprints without DRS. If we’ve gotta have them, why not add another change in them as well?

    4. Agree with COTD.

      I think somewhere over the past 15-ish years F1 (And a lot of fans/media) got a bit too focused on overtaking alone & that somehow became the metric used to judge a race or even a circuits quality.

      Yes overtaking is important but I’ve seen races that featured a lot of overtaking that weren’t especially exciting & were quickly forgotten (Istanbul 2011 for example) just as I’ve seen races that featured little overtaking but were exciting to watch and were memorable & still talked about today (Imola 2005/06 for instance).

      For me overtaking should be difficult, Not impossible but not easy. I don’t need to see tons of it to enjoy a race providing that we see some good battles that produce the possibility of overtaking with some good attempts. That is what gets me really into a race and what helps keep me hooked.

      Overtaking is good in the moment & when its a brilliant and exciting overtake (Or a great move that came after an exciting laps long battle feturing a few failed attempts) it stays in the memory. But if there’s too much of it because it’s too easy then it starts to blend together & tends to be quickly forgotten.

      1. I really like that we are finally some proper cars dancing around and fighting for position. Together with the tech, I’ve always appreciated how close drivers dare to be to each other, how car positioning is key in order to move your opponent slightly offline, to have the advantage at the next exit and eventually get a pass.
        This year feels like the first one in a long time, we finally have that for consecutive laps, cars lurking on the tail of the one ahead. The huge added bonus is that if cars are closely matched, the one overtaken can now stay close and fight back which we didn’t have in previous generation as they suffocated in dirty air.

        @stefmeister I agree that if the overtake is too straightforward, it loses some taste. If it becomes a Truli train for a whole race, it’s not interesting either. But it feels like the cars have the right properties this year to offer nice battles.

      2. I think somewhere over the past 15-ish years F1 (And a lot of fans/media) got a bit too focused on overtaking alone & that somehow became the metric used to judge a race or even a circuits quality.

        Completely agreed. I’ve discussed overtaking and DRS with my wife, who has only become seriously interested in F1 since we got together, and she can’t get the thrill of watching 2 cars following each other for a dozen or more laps. Seeing the chances, the late braking, waiting for someone to make a mistake, wincing as they go into a corner almost side-by-side, wondering if anyone will try overtaking in an unorthodox place. These things are amazing to watch, but have all but disappeared in the DRS era. The only places you see people trying to overtake are the DRS zones, and the majority of these end up being highway passes…

    5. Neil (@neilosjames)
      12th April 2022, 7:07

      Agree (mostly) with CoTD.

      Overtaking itself is not what makes F1 exciting, it’s ‘possibility of overtaking’. As long as there’s a belief in my head that an on-track battle could progress from follow-the-leader to an actual race with some wheel-to-wheel stuff, I don’t care if the overtake itself happens or not. If I believe it could, that’s enough.

      1. For me it’s also seeing how good the leading driver can be lap after lap, cause you know any slight slip up can result in the chaser taking advantage. If they then remain ahead you take your hat off to the leading driver for being faultless. The real cat and mouse game. I think the new regs seem to have brought this element back a bit but the DRS is still too strong in that sometimes you just force someone to defend a slightly compromised line and you breeze past them on the straight.

    6. Why is a villa in Euro territory, reported on in USD, reported as GBP here?

      There is nothing wrong with GBP, but if this site wants to grow beyond a ‘.co.uk’ publication, then it should become a bit more international rather than just picking a different domain name.

      Even the BBC is not using GBP in all their stories!

      1. @jff USD is only in the US, so not any more international than other currencies.
        Still, USD seems to be the preferred one, especially within F1 (for example, budget cap), even though teams are in GBP & Euro countries.

        1. USD is generally seen as the primary point of reference @jerejj. All over the world.
          It’s also accepted in many other countries outside of the US.

          1. This is sadly true. A bit like most countries speak English, it’s the most commonly agreed form in an international setting.

        2. though teams are in GBP & Euro countries.

          Plus USD & CHF

      2. It was reported also in dollars if you read the actual post below the headline. And if you look at the referenced Reuters article it gives you the conversion to euro. These are all currencies widely used for commerce, finance, and trade.

        1. You clearly missed the point I’m making; please read the second paragraph.

    7. So did I initially, but ultimately, that defensive move wasn’t overly aggressive, so I was okay without a penalty.

      A big task, but fixing a fast unreliable car is easier than making a slow reliable one faster.
      However, since RBR is behind Ferrari on raw pace, clawing back the 46-point deficit without issues for Leclerc won’t be easy, even less so if unreliability keeps on costing achievable points.

      Leclerc & Albon are the only ones who really stood out in this race.

      I agree with COTD in that a race shouldn’t get measured purely based on overtaking metrics as defending equally belongs to racing.

      1. As things are red bull is more likely to fight mercedes than ferrari, reliability hurts them so much that if they don’t fix it their additional speed might not be sufficient for 2nd.

    8. $115m for a house is a lot. Obviously they’re rich, but that’s a lot even for the super wealthy.

    9. Bottas may end up in the 2nd Ferrari seat if things continue to go on like this. Solid performance by Bottas until now. His Chinese teammate also is sending some good signals, as he did not involve any stupid accidents, and pace-wise also very good for a rookie.

    10. Stroll was having a rough day and trying very hard to not get passed. At times being unfair in his defense.

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