INDIANAPOLIS, June 21, 2005 – Let’s pass blame around for this debacle at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in what was intended to be the sixth annual US Grand Prix here. It turned out to be a six-car show with only Michael Schumacher’s intimidation of teammate Rubens Barrichello while exiting the pits from his second stop to excite any one of the remaining fans at the Brickyard. It’s estimated the Speedway had 130,000 on the grounds before 1PM EST but they began filing out shortly after the “start." This “race” was a yawner after all 14 Michelin-shod drivers retired before the official start, completing only their formation lap. All, including polesitter Jarno Trulli went immediately to their garages. Michelin vs Bridgestone Start the blame game with Michelin, who did not fully study the changes to the road-oval circuit after resurfacing and subsequent diamond grooving between the 2004 Brickyard 400 and the Indianapolis 500. In pre-May tire tests, Firestone engineers … [Read more...] about The blame game – 2005 United States GP at Indianapolis
Letter to suppliers about leaving
The 2019 world champion is out of contract for next season having penned a one-year deal with M-Sport Ford for the 2023 campaign, after leaving Hyundai with a year remaining on his contract. Tanak has endured a difficult return to the Ford squad that offered him his first full-time WRC season in 2012. The Estonian claimed victory in Sweden and finished second in Croatia, although those results are his only visits to the podium to date this year. Tanak says he wishes to continue competing in the WRC next year while M-Sport is hoping to secure his services for 2024. However, M-Sport bosses have admitted it won’t be a straightforward decision to keep Tanak. The British team’s future at rallying’s highest level next year has been questioned, although boss Malcolm Wilson says the squad has no intention to stop competing in Rally1 in 2024. Tanak revealed in Greece he’s had discussions with all WRC teams but admitted it is “difficult' to know how his future will pan out. … [Read more...] about Tanak in talks but WRC 2024 future yet to be decided
This week 40 years ago, an Italian fashion label signed a deal which began one of the most successful, influential and colourful sponsorship programmes in Formula 1 history. Benetton’s entry into F1 with Tyrrell was successful from the outset, but the brand aspired to do more than just put its stickers on an F1 car. Within three years it had a team of its own and was winning races as a constructor, and in time it enjoyed championship-winning success with one of F1’s all-time great drivers. The idea a brand that was ‘just a T-shirt manufacturer’ could succeed in F1 was greeted with scepticism with some on their arrival. But Benetton soon disproved the doubters and inspired other brands to do the same – notably the soft drink producer which goes into the 2023 season as defending champions. 1983: Tyrrell Plucky underdogs Tyrrell had Denim logos on their cars when Michele Alboreto won the 1982 season finale at Las Vegas. But Luciano Benetton refused to share space on their car with … [Read more...] about Benetton, 40 years on: How a fashion label conquered Formula 1
Red Bull chief technical officer Newey, who joined the recently crowned 2023 constructors’ champion in 2006, turned down approaches from Ferrari on three occasions. Never working for the Scuderia leaves him with some regrets “emotionally”, as does not having the chance to design cars for F1 champions Alonso and Mercedes rival Hamilton. Speaking on F1’s own Beyond The Grid podcast, Newey opened up on the times Ferrari courted his services. He said: “[Ferrari approached] in my IndyCar days, which probably doesn’t count, then ’93 and famously in 2014. The ’93 one was very tempting. “I went down, Jean Todt [team boss] had just started. I remember him talking about should he hire Michael [Schumacher] or not. Do you think that was a good idea?” Newlywed Newey declined the offer based on the breakdown of his previous marriage, having split his time between England and working for March in the United States. Adrian Newey, Red Bull Racing Photo by: Red Bull … [Read more...] about Newey: Not working with Ferrari, Hamilton and Alonso are ’emotional regrets’
The iconic figure-of-eight track has always been punishing on its rubber, but things could well be a bit more extreme this time around. Race day is expected to be another scorcher, and complaints that George Russell mentioned on Friday about a "strange" sliding have been caused by a track surface that has had a 15% drop in macro roughness (so effective grip) compared to 12 months ago. As Ferrari's Charles Leclerc said: "Especially with the very warm temperatures this year, the overheating is really, really bad. So, I expect that it [the race] will be all about the tyre management and the strategy." A two-stopper looks nailed on then, but it comes with not all teams having the luxury of what appears to be the ideal tyre allocation to get them through without much drama. F1 tyre supplier Pirelli thinks the best approach to the race is to start on the soft, run through until laps 12-18, and then split the rest of the grand prix up into two hard stints. But that is … [Read more...] about Are Red Bull and Ferrari on back foot for potential Japanese GP tyre wrecker?
The FIA’s report into Jules Bianchi’s crash during the Japanese Grand Prix, which left him with serious brain injuries, claims it occurred because the Marussia driver “did not slow sufficiently” as he was instructed to by double yellow flags which were being shown at the time. “If drivers adhere to the requirements of double yellow flags,” the report noted, “then neither competitors nor officials should be put in immediate or physical danger”. Bianchi’s car struck a crane which was recovering the stranded vehicle of Adrian Sutil , who had crashed at the same corner on the previous lap. But although the report backed the decision of race director Charlie Whiting not to deploy the Safety Car while Sutil’s car was being recovered, a summary released following today’s World Motor Sport Council meeting listed six recommendations for improvements to F1 safety in the wake of the accident. They included changes to the use of double waved yellow flags. The report also revealed a … [Read more...] about FIA plans changes after Bianchi crash but report says his speed was to blame