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Carry-over ‘B-car’ gives optimism for 2021 – Horner - GPfans
Christian Horner has revealed next year’s Red Bull has so much carry-over design from this season the team has decided to designate it a ‘B-car’.
Christian Horner has revealed next years Red Bull has so much carry-over design from this season the team has decided to designate it a B-car. Formula 1 cars typically undergo a full re-design between seasons, but greater restrictions on development, coupled with a focus on major new rules for 2022, have reduced the amount of time teams are spending on its new machines. Article continues under video As a result, significant parts of the existing car will not be touched for next season, leading team principal Horner to reveal: We called the new car 16B as opposed to 17 because theres so much of it that is carry-over. Its not a start from scratch again. A large percentage of the car, probably about 60 per cent of it, is carry-over. Gearbox, chassis, elements like suspension, so a large element of the car is fixed, its mainly aerodynamic that can be altered. Mercedes switched off development on its existing car earlier this year to focus its efforts specifically on next year and also on conceptual ideas for the 2022 machine, which will follow a significant change in regulations. As Horner explained, aerodynamics is the area in which teams can make the biggest steps for 2021, but the Red Bull boss is not concerned that its rivals might have made a step forward by stopping development on its current car. Our philosophy has been that whatever you learn this year you carry on into next year anyway, he added. Where we start in a couple of months time is going to be pretty much where we finish here with development upgrades on it. Weve seen they [Mercedes] have been bringing in some components to the car. Of course, we expect them to be very strong next year but if we can build on this momentum hopefully we can give them a harder time.
Hamilton "still the benchmark" despite Russell's "bright future" - Wolff - GPfans
Mercedes motorsport boss Toto Wolff has dismissed renewed claims from critics that Lewis Hamilton's success is only driven by the fact he has been in the best car for many years.
Mercedes motorsport boss Toto Wolff has dismissed renewed claims from critics that Lewis Hamilton's success is only driven by the fact he has been in the best car for many years. George Russell's exceptional debut weekend for the team standing in for Covid-hit Hamilton has naturally sparked debate as to how a 22-year-old can come within 0.026 seconds of snatching pole and be on the cusp of a maiden race victory but for heartbreaking issues that unfolded in the second half of the Sakhir GP. Article continues under video That has resulted in talk of Russell now joining the team alongside Hamilton from 2022, although many observers are hoping for a change of tack on the line-up for next year, even though Valtteri Bottas is contracted. Wolff, though, is adamant that Hamilton deserves all the credit he has so far received in amassing his seven titles and numerous records. "I think Lewis Hamilton wins so much and so many titles because he is the best driver in the best car at the moment," explained Wolff. "We are very humble about it because it is not a given that we give him the best car and that is why we have a positive influence when the car works well to be a part of his success, and we have a negative influence when our car doesn't work. "So it is never won alone, it is never the driver that makes all the difference and it is never the car that makes all the difference. It is the combination of the two. "Lewis is still the benchmark, he is the best race driver out there. He has proven that with his multiple records and we must not be carried away at this stage by a phenomenal drive from a new kid who has a bright future in Formula 1." Wolff has stated that on the back of Russell's performance the team "need to see what the future holds". He added: To be honest, I haven't made up my mind what that means for us."
It won't look good if Russell beats me "fair and square" - Bottas - GPfans
Mercedes driver Valtteri Bottas has conceded it would “not look good” for his career if Lewis Hamilton’s replacement George Russell beats him in Bahrain this weekend.
Mercedes driver Valtteri Bottas has conceded it would not look good for his career if Lewis Hamiltons replacement George Russell beats him in Bahrain this weekend. Bottas has failed to match up to Hamilton this season, winning just two races compared to his team-mates 11, but this weekend he will be marked against Russell after the seven-time champion was sidelined following a positive Covid-19 test. Article continues under video The Finn, who has been with Mercedes four years, has signed a one-year deal to race for the team again in 2021. Russell, who is highly rated but has raced 36 times for Williams without scoring a point, is eyeing up the drive for 2022. Asked what it would do for his career if Russell was able to out-perform him this weekend, he responded: Quite a punchy question. I havent really thought about it. Its difficult to know what to expect from George in terms of performance. He knows the team well, but also it is a different car to the one he has tested, lots of new things. I havent thought about it in that sense. If I have to give some kind of answer, then Id say if he beats me, sure it wouldnt look so good on me if I have a normal race and he beats me fair and square. But I am not a person who thinks on that side of things. Russell has been helped up the motorsport ladder by Mercedes young driver programme and is the first from that pool to get to race for the world champion team in F1. This weekends race, and potentially the following one a week later in Abu Dhabi if Hamilton cannot return in time to compete, could be seen as a mini showdown for a future Mercedes seat. But neither Bottas, nor Russell, were drawn into such an idea, insisting that getting the upper hand in one or two races is nothing that Mercedes will focus on when it comes to selecting its driver line-up. Bottas added: I know you like to speculate things and create drama and showdowns, but I doubt George is thinking that way and at least I dont. From my side, as a racing driver you always want to be ahead of your team-mate, whether its Lewis Hamilton or George Russell or anyone else it doesnt matter. I have a job to do for the last races of the season, I have my own motivations, which is trying to win the remaining races, which is obviously for me the only goal, and end the season on a positive way. Russell added: One race doesnt define a drivers capability or the decision making for something that is over 12 months away. From my side, thats not even in the back of my mind. I am going out there to enjoy it and learn as much as I can. In terms of the future, that will be judged over the course of the season and whats happened in the past, not just on one or maybe two races.
“Visor melted” in Grosjean’s fiery crash, reveals FIA doctor Roberts - GPfans
Romain Grosjean was lucky to avoid more major burns after his helmet visor melted during his fiery Bahrain Grand Prix crash, FIA doctor Ian Roberts has revealed.
Romain Grosjean was lucky to avoid more major burns after his helmet visor melted during his fiery Bahrain Grand Prix crash, FIA doctor Ian Roberts has revealed. Roberts stepped into the flames to help Haas driver Grosjean escape over the barrier after he and medical car driver Alan van der Merwe had quickly joined marshals on the scene. Article continues under video Roberts revealed the first thing he had told the French driver was to sit down and he explained: He was very shaky and his visor was completely opaque and melted. I had to get his helmet off just to check everything else was okay. He had some pain on his foot and hands so from that point we knew it was safe enough to move him into the [medical] car, a bit more protection, get some gel on his burns then get him into the ambulance and off to the medical centre. Grosjean was engulfed in a fireball after his car split in two on impact during the crash but the French driver managed to escape from the flames with minor burns. Such scenes are extremely rare in F1, due to major safety design factors around fuel tanks, and Roberts revealed that despite the heavy impact, the first concern for the medical crew was to check for the effects of the fire. From that sort of thing its going to be flame, smoke inhalation, airway issues, but nothing went up into his helmet, weve had a look at his helmet as well, said Roberts, whose face was singed in the rescue. As we arrived [it was a] very odd scene, where youve got half a car pointing in the wrong direction and just across the barrier a mass of heat. Then looking to the right at that point I could see Romain trying to get up. We needed some way of getting to him, weve got the marshal there with the extinguisher, that was just enough to push the flame away as Romain got high enough to then reach over and pull him over the barrier. Looking at him clinically we were quite happy with him from a life-threatening injury point of view, then it was just trying to make him comfortable from the injuries we could see.
Hamilton in a class of his own in Bahrain GP FP1, spearheads Mercedes one-two - GPfans
Newly crowned seven-time champion Lewis Hamilton underlined there will be no let up this season as he finished quickest in first practice for the Bahrain Grand Prix.
Newly crowned seven-time champion Lewis Hamilton underlined there will be no let up this season as he finished quickest in first practice for the Bahrain Grand Prix. On occasion in the past, after winning a title with races to spare, Hamilton has eased off the gas in 'dead rubber' grands prix. Article continues under video But around Bahain's International Circuit, Hamilton was in a class of his own as the Mercedes driver finished almost half-a-second clear of team-mate Valtteri Bottas. Hamilton and Bottas completed more laps than any other drivers - clocking 40 and 41 respectively - with the Briton's best a one minute 29.033secs, with the Finn 0.449s adrift. In comparison, the quickest time in first practice for the Bahrain GP in April last year was 1:30.354s posted by Ferrari's Charles Leclerc. As for the rest of the field, the gap between Bottas and Racing Point's Sergio Perez at the head of it was equally as yawning, with the Mexican a full half-a-second off the pace, followed closely by McLaren's Carlos Sainz. Naturally, with FP1 run in late mid-afternoon daylight, the conditions are often viewed as not being representative of what transpires for qualifying and the race which both begin in twilight and fades into evening. There was also the added element of Pirelli running the final rule over its specification of tyres for next season, with all drivers putting in a handful of laps at various stages. But even at this early stage, it is hard to believe the race will not be another duel between Hamilton and Bottas for front-row and race honours. It is the fight for third in the constructors' championship that is instead garnering most interest, with Racing Point a handful of points ahead of McLaren, with Renault and now Ferrari also in the fray. In terms of Perez's and Sainz's team-mates, Lance Stroll and Lando Norris were ninth and 18th respectively, with the latter 2.359s adrift of Hamilton. AlphaTauri's Pierre Gasly finished fifth on the timesheet ahead of Red Bull duo Max Verstappen and Alex Albon, both 1.2s down and separated by just eight-thousandths of a second. Renault pair Esteban Ocon and Daniel Ricciardo then sandwiched Stroll in eighth and 10th respectively, with the latter 1.475s adrift. As for Ferrari, Leclerc and Sebastian Vettel, fresh from his first podium for a year after finishing third in the last race in Turkey, were 11th and 12th respectively, both around 1.5s behind Hamilton. Robert Kubica, replacing Kimi Raikkonen in FP1 for Alfa Romeo, was a respectable 13th, a tenth of a second down on Vettel. Williams duo Nicholas Latifi and Roy Nissany, in for George Russell, brought up the rear, with the latter 3.768s down, and a third of a second behind the Canadian.
A "chilled" Hamilton views future contract talks as "organic" - GPfans
Lewis Hamilton has revealed to now being "more chilled" over his future contract talks in the wake of him securing his latest Formula 1 world title.
Lewis Hamilton has revealed to now being "more chilled" over his future contract talks in the wake of him securing his latest Formula 1 world title. Due to the time constraints of a heavily revised and condensed Formula 1 calendar, Hamilton and Mercedes motorsport boss Toto Wolff opted to put negotiations to one side until after the latest titles had been secured. Article continues under video Mercedes wrapped up its seventh consecutive constructors' crown at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix at Imola, while Hamilton clinched his record-equalling seventh drivers' championship with his stunning victory at the last race in Turkey. Heading into this weekend's Bahrain GP that sparks a season-ending triple-header in the Middle East, the hope is Hamilton and Wolff have now finally started talks on a deal that will tie the 35-year-old to the team for another three years. For Hamilton, the pressure has at least been eased now he has banked his latest title. He said: "I've always thought through the year that Ive got a job to do. "Ive got a contract in place, I dont feel like I should add pressure. It has to be organic and not something thats forced. So, I thought lets put it to I bet on myself. "Naturally there are days when you think What happens if you start making mistakes? What happens if you get worse all of a sudden, you dont put in these great performances? Does your value decrease? Does your bargaining power decrease? Does your reputation go off a cliff? "I know there are scenarios in life where youre like Lets sign up real quick, so you guarantee your future, and for me, Ive bet on myself. I do the work. I know myself better than anyone and I know what I can do, and I know how to do it. Better than ever." Reiterating the fact winning the title was the priority, he added: "I wanted to put it aside and wait until the job was done. "Weve got three weeks in the Middle East, so now its a bit more chilled but I still have three races ahead of me that I want to win. Its not done but we will get it done, Im sure." Before you go... Steiner - Departing Haas drivers need to 'show they care' Albon heading "in the right direction" with "more predictable" Red Bull
Hamilton - "I've walked this sport alone" - GPfans
Lewis Hamilton is hopeful that becoming a seven-time Formula 1 champion has sent out a powerful message that dreams can be realised no matter your background.
Lewis Hamilton is hopeful that becoming a seven-time Formula 1 champion has sent out a powerful message that dreams can be realised no matter your background. While Hamilton has delivered many compelling statements against racism this year, he arguably delivered his most persuasive of all on track in Istanbul with a Turkish Grand Prix victory that underlined his newly-crowned status in equalling Michael Schumacher's record. Article continues under video Hamilton is living proof that colour, class or creed are no barriers to success if you are willing to work hard to achieve, cementing his status as a role model for others to follow and plough their own furrows in whatever field. "Its obviously no secret that Ive really walked this sport alone - the only black person here, or the only person of colour here and it's a really interesting point," remarked Hamilton. "The fact is that as Im bi-racial, whilst its the term of the black driver here, Im bi-racial. I think this colourism, people should perhaps read about. "When I was younger, I didnt have anybody in the sport that looked like me, so it was easy to think its not possible to get there because nobody of your colour has ever been there. "You dont see any black people on tv that are in Formula 1, so hopefully this sends a message to the kids that are watching. "Hopefully, theyve seen that performance and hopefully they can see that it doesnt matter where you come from, whatever your background, its so important to you to dream big." Hamilton believes if he can plough a lone furrow and emerge creditably, then others can follow in his footsteps and do the same, "If you are looking at places, industries and you dont see someone of the same background as you, or the same ethnicity as you, or with the same religion, create your own path," added the 35-year-old. "Thats what we did, thats what Ive been able to do, and its been so tough. Tough doesnt even describe how hard its been. "I hope that sends that message. Thats the most important message for kids: to dream as big as possible and not give up." Before you go... Brawn sees no end" to Hamilton success Steiner not "completely mad" as slicks gamble a risk too far
"Ice rink" Istanbul Park "terrifying" - Hamilton - GPfans
Lewis Hamilton has described the newly-laid Istanbul Park circuit as "terrifying" following practice for the Turkish Grand Prix.
Lewis Hamilton has described the newly-laid Istanbul Park circuit as "terrifying" following practice for the Turkish Grand Prix. Hamilton has been left baffled by the decision of the circuit's owners to lavish money on a new surface for Formula 1's one-off return to the track after a nine-year absence, effectively creating "an ice rink", according to the six-time F1 champion. Article continues under video With the asphalt just 10 days old and with natural oils seeping through, the situation was compounded by the track being washed before the start of practice, and in conjunction with low temperatures, it meant the drivers were unable to get heat into their tyres. Reflecting on his session in which he finished fourth quickest in his Mercedes, just over half-a-second behind Red Bull's Max Verstappen, Hamilton said: "It was a little bit of a disaster, to be honest. "This track is such a fantastic circuit and I really don't fully understand when they spend millions to re-do a surface of a track. "I know it's been sitting around for a long time, maybe they could have just cleaned it instead of wasting all their money. "Now the track is worse than Portimão [for the recent Portuguese GP] with its new surface, so for us, the tyres aren't working, and you can see it's like an ice rink out there. "So you don't quite get the enjoyment of the lap as you would get at Istanbul, and I don't see that changing." Asked for the feeling of an F1 driver being in a car in such conditions, considering that for a driver in a road car such a situation is terrifying, Hamilton replied: "It's the same thing. It's terrifying the whole way round. "There are wet patches all over, so you're on slicks accelerating, and it goes so fast, and it's because you're way below the temperature window for these tyres because they're so hard and they work in a certain window. "For some reason, this surface is so smooth. Older circuits are much more open between the stones, so it works the tyre more. "Here it's super-closed, flat and shiny, and I guess there's oil seeping from the Tarmac. It's s**t with a capital S!" Before you go... Pirelli admit to Istanbul tyre selection error
Ricciardo fighting for F1 title if he drove for Mercedes - Brawn - GPfans
Ross Brawn is in no doubt Daniel Ricciardo would be fighting for the Formula 1 title alongside Lewis Hamilton this season if he was driving for Mercedes.
Ross Brawn is in no doubt Daniel Ricciardo would be fighting for the Formula 1 title alongside Lewis Hamilton this season if he was driving for Mercedes. Ricciardo has emerged as one of this season's star performers that has culminated in the Australian securing two podium finishes in his last three races for the first time since 2017. Article continues under video Further credit must be awarded to Ricciardo given he is giving his all for Renault despite deciding before the season had started to part ways with the team at the end of the campaign and sign for McLaren. In the wake of his third place in the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix at Imola, Ricciardo earned plaudits from F1's managing director motorsports Brawn, who feels he would be giving six-time F1 champion Hamilton a hard time if in the W11. "Daniel Ricciardo is a brilliant driver, and one of the very best in Formula 1," wrote Brawn in his regular post-race column. "His drive to another podium was very impressive. If he had a Mercedes, theres absolutely no doubt in my mind he would be taking race wins and pole positions and challenging for the world championship. "Hes doing a fantastic job right now and Renault will be sad to lose him, even if Fernando Alonso is the man wholl be stepping in. "I hope McLaren can give Daniel a car he deserves next season. Hes a great member of the F1 fraternity." Hamilton's latest victory, his ninth of the season and 93rd of his F1 career, helped Mercedes secure its seventh consecutive constructors' championship and break the record previously held by Ferrari from 1999-2004 when Brawn was technical director with the Scuderia. Laying claim to a small degree of credit as Mercedes was born from the takeover of Brawn GP at the end of 2009, Brawn added: "Mercedes are going through a stunning period since 2014 and on Sunday, they took away a record which I was personally involved in during my time at Ferrari. When you achieve those things, you know that one day it may be broken. "The fact it has been broken by a group of people I know well, worked closely with and count as friends makes it more special. The core of the organisation is still the group that came through the Brawn GP phoenix. "They deserve everything they have achieved. Congratulations to Toto for being such a great leader, their drivers for delivering and Mercedes for having the vision. "Their challenge now is to maintain that consistency with the financial, sporting and technical changes that will be implemented over the next couple of years. These are not small changes and undoubtedly they have the potential to change the competitive landscape." Before you go... Hamilton and F1 community console Russell after Imola error Kvyat dismisses "external pressure" as Tsunoda rumours ramp up
Wolff concedes “nothing is secure” but hopes Hamilton does not quit F1 - GPfans
Mercedes boss Toto Wolff was unable to confirm whether Lewis Hamilton will stay in Formula 1 next season but is hopeful he will continue.
Mercedes boss Toto Wolff was unable to confirm whether Lewis Hamilton will stay in Formula 1 next season but is hopeful he will continue. After winning his 93rd race at Imola, Hamilton then caused a stir when he said afterwards there is no guarantee he will continue racing as he can understand wanting to pull back a little bit and he has a lot that excites him outside the sport. Article continues under video Wolff and Hamilton are yet to sign new contracts but the team principal has confirmed he plans to move into a less hands-on role and a change in the pairs symbiotic partnership could be key to the reigning champions decision. Wolff said: I completely relate to his feeling, that you question yourself, that you think about all the other things that matter. When you switch on the news in the morning and off in the evening its all about the struggles that we all face. We are here in our little happy place and we try to bring some entertainment into households. But then youre thinking in the more difficult reality the next day and all of that is something that affects us in that respect. I think nothing is ever secure. Like Niki Lauda in the 1970s, you could wake up on a Friday or Saturday morning at the track and say Im just not having fun anymore and I think that can happen to anybody. In 2016, after winning the world title, Nico Rosberg made a shock decision to retire, leading Wolff to declare that it is important where our heart is and mindset is for next year". Even though he has had his drive at Williams confirmed, it is likely George Russell would likely be the man to replace Hamilton if he did make a shock decision to retire. Wolff conceded it would create chaos in terms of driver decisions for 2021. He added: If he were to decide to step out of Formula One, which I dont think is going to happen and I hope is not going to happen, I think we are going to have a pretty frantic driver market out there. There will be a moment when the drivers championship is decided to sit down [to discuss the future] - and we have a few months before the first race happens in Australia. Before you go... Russell disbelief at worst mistake in his motorsport career Wolff confirms he has Mercedes team principal successor in mind
Bottas retirement made Hamilton's record bid "straightforward" - Mercedes - GPfans
Mercedes chief race engineer Andrew Shovlin has revealed Valtteri Bottas' early retirement allowed Lewis Hamilton a "straightforward" run to equalling one of Formula 1's all-time landmarks
Mercedes chief race engineer Andrew Shovlin has revealed Valtteri Bottas' early retirement allowed Lewis Hamilton a "straightforward" run to equalling one of Formula 1's all-time landmarks Hamilton took the lead in Sunday's Eifel Grand Prix from team-mate Bottas when the Finn locked up and flat-spotted his soft tyres on lap 13. Article continues under video With the car suffering from vibrations, it necessitated an earlier-than-planned stop and an alternative strategy, only for his race to end five laps later with a power unit problem. With Bottas out of the equation, it meant Hamilton only had to keep an eye on Red Bull's Max Verstappen en route to securing his 91st grand prix victory and matching the feat of Michael Schumacher. In that first stint it certainly wasnt shaping up to be a straightforward race for Lewis because Max [Verstappen] wasnt that far behind," said Shovlin. "At the time Valtteri had the problem we werent close to triggering pit stops. But certainly once Valtteri had that lock up and was forced into the early stop you saw that Lewis was in control of the race and all the decisions for us were made by the VSC, by the safety car." Shovlin also confirmed that prior to the late safety car period caused by Lando Norris' retirement, Mercedes had been considering pitting Hamilton for fresh rubber. As this would have dropped Hamilton behind Verstappen, the decision was made to allow Red Bull to blink first and then make the call. He added: It was a lot of thinking about that final stint, whether you go to the end or would the tyres go to the end, do we want to break it up and two-stop the race. "But because Lewis had built that gap to Max, we werent going to pull that trigger. We would just wait for them to make the call and then we would have shadowed them. So actually it was a very straightforward race in that regard. We had the pace to build the gaps and Lewis was able to build them when we needed them and that was why it was a relatively straightforward race. Before you go... Red Bull interested in Perez and Hulkenberg for 2021 Racing Point developments a "direct result" of Hülkenberg's feedback
Hamilton and Bottas 'living like hermits' to avoid Covid contact - Wolff - GPfans
Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff has claimed Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas have been living "like hermits" this season to avoid exposure to Covid-19.
Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff has claimed Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas have been living "like hermits" this season to avoid exposure to Covid-19. Mercedes has been hit this weekend with positive tests for two team members, while four others in contact with the duo have also been forced to self-isolate even though they have so far tested negative. Article continues under video It has resulted in six personnel being flown out from the UK to bolster the team ahead of this weekend's Eifel Grand Prix at the Nürburgring. It has led to question marks being raised as to the level of protection surrounding title contenders Hamilton and Bottas and the potential ramifications of a positive test for either. Wolff has confirmed the duo to be "the most restricted of the whole group, of the whole team". He added: "Certainly not a great situation because you almost need to live like a hermit. Thats what were doing. "They are at home, they are not going out for dinners, they are not meeting any other people." Explaining the additional steps being taken to minimise contact between the team and the drivers, Wolff said: "Within the team we do debriefs via Zoom or Microsoft Teams. "Theyre not sitting in the room with the engineers, they are sitting in their own rooms. We are avoiding as much as possible any personal contact with them. We try to do this. "Stepping into the car, driving the car, keeping the distance whilst we belt them in and then drive. "That is really critical for the championship if you miss a race or two. So unfortunately for them, they need to live a life that is a bit secluded. But we think the decisions weve taken are good and protected." Before you go... Vettel disappointed for Schumacher after "boring" Eifel Friday Two-day Eifel GP "a practice run for Imola"