Champagne and medals from 2009 ?
It looks like we may be in for more than just different cars next season. Few weeks ago Bernie Ecclestone floated an idea to scrap the championship points and give the top 3 drivers medals instead. The one with most golds would take the title. This would be rather radical change. Perhaps because of the radical nature of this idea I thought there is no way this could go ahead anytime soon.
To my surprise (if Bernie and the news reports can be trusted) it seems this idea found quickly the support among the teams and may be implemented for 2009 season already. The system would be simple. Gold, silver and brozne for top three, nothing for the rest. The other positions would however determine the championship rankings.
Vodafone goes viral with this FindLiveGuy advertsing campaign.
Hopefuly I will have time to prepare some proper video edit of my 2008 Macau GP experience. But before that happens, here are approximately 4 minutes of sounds and sights from garages and Lisboa corner.
More from Macau – Action photos from Macau GP photos – check this post.
It will take me a while before I manage to go through all my Macau GP photos. But as Macau Grand Prix is all about action I made some quick selection of some action photos from 2008 racing weekend in Macau.
Run run run before the cars return to Lisboa bend
2009 style front wing on BMW Sauber car
(Updated, more pictures added including Honda 2009 wing)
The winter testing for 2009 Formula One season begins in Barcelona today. The are is some added excitement about the testing this winter as all the teams will have to come up with brand new cars for next season, very different from the 2008 Formula 1 machinery. So far all we have had were speculations, more speculations, and few photos of Williams wings. Today BMW Sauber put their new wings to test (and public display) – large, wide and low front wing, small, narrow and high rear wing. That “Credit Suisse” painted part of the front wing seems to the movable one. All the winglets, horns and mini fins are gone. They still however run the car with grooved tyres, but those will not be used in Formula 1 from 2009 season.
Canadian GP organizers ended talks with Bernie Ecclestone
As it is often case in Formula 1 the money and greed prevailed, the sport and fans are the loosers. Following the news coming out of Montreal on Sunday the chances that the Canadian GP may reappear on 2009 F1 calendar when its final version is released in December are now close to zero. Finding themselves far away from meeting demands from Bernie Ecclestone the organizers of the Canadian GP ended the talks aimed at keeping the Formula 1 race in Montreal.
Québec province’s Minister of Economic Development, Raymond Bachand:
Here are the race results of the WTTC, Motorcycle Grand Prix and GT Cup races from Macau:
Windsor Arch Macau GT Cup race result:
1. Darryl O’YOUNG – HKG – Porsche 997 GT3 Cup – 31:01.710
2. Danny WATTS – GBR – Porsche 997 GT3 Cup – 31:03.830
3. Keita SAWA – JPN – Lamborghini Gallardo GT3 – 31:10.891
4. Cesar CAMPANICO – POR – Ferrari F360 Challenge – 31:12.353
5. Samson CHAN Kai Yiu – HKG – Porsche 997 GT3 Cup M -31:19.035
6. Nicholas THOMAS – NZL – Porsche 996 GT3 Cup – 31:25.428
7. Eddie YAU Junior – HKG – Lamborghini Gallardo GT3 – 31:26.462
8. Richard MEINS – GBR – Ferrari F360 Challenge – 31:30.183
9. Tunku HAMMAM – MAS – Porsche 911 GT3 Cup S – 31:31.060
10. Francis TJIA – NED – Ferrari F360 Challenge – 31:31.713
2008 Macau Formula 3 race - incident after incident
I just returned from Macau. What a weekend it was ! If someone likes the good old motor racing then Macau GP is definitelly the place to be. Zero glamour and lots of action ! Stay tuned for my Macau GP reviews, photos and videos.
For now the 2008 Windsor Arch Macau GP Formula 3 race result:
1. Keisuke KUNIMOTO – JPN – Tom’s – 41:01.864
2. Edoardo MORTARA – ITA – Signature Plus – 41:03.574
3. Brendon HARTLEY – NZL – Carlin Motorsport – 41:05.870
4. Mika MAKI – FIN – Signature Plus – 41:10.306
5. Renger van der ZANDE – NED – Prema Powerteam – 41:12.140
6. Laurens VANTHOOR – BEL – RC Motorsport – 41:14.839
7. Oliver TURVEY – GBR – Carlin Motorsport – 41:14.998
8. Walter GRUBMULLER – AUT – Hitech Racing – 41:16.559
Future not clear for Chinese Grand Prix
This may be bad news for Bernie Ecclestone and good news for promoters of the other Formula 1 races. Organizers of Chinese GP are evaluating the feasibility of hosting the race ahead of expiry of their contract. Shanghai Grand Prix was first time hosted in 2004 and the organizers have two more races to go before the original contract runs out in 2010.
One would think that money does not matter in country like China. But things change … There is a chance that the Chinese GP may be dropped.
Edoardo Mortara looks like the man to beat this weekened in Macau. He was the quickest driver also in the 3rd session in Macau. He ended the final practice 0.117 ahead of Carlo van Dam.
There were several incidents in the final practice. Jaime Alguersuari crashed at the San Francisco Bend badly damaging his car. Another front runner, Carlo van Dam, had his off at the Lisboa but managed to stop the car before hitting the barriers.
Friday qualifying saw a change on the top – Carlo van Dam clocked the fastest time ahead of Sam Bird, Keisuke Kunimoto and the fastest driver in previous three sessions Edoardo Mortara. It was exciting session with Sam Bird on pole and improving in the first sector of his next lap when Kei Cozzolino hit the barriers at the Fishermen’s Bend. The session was red flagged with less than 4 minutes remaining. Only the cars with garages towards the exit of the pitlane had enough time to make one more run after the restart. It looked like Sam Bird may hold on to his pole but then Carlo van Dam grabbed the pole with only seconds remaining. Macau Formula 3 continues tomorrow with Qualifying Race.
You can listen to replay of radio commentary of two Friday’s sessions here (tri-lingual Portuguese, Cantonese and English):
Macau Formula 3 Friday Practice Radio
Macau Formula 3 Friday Qualifying Radio
Edoardo Mortara fastest in Macau on Thursday
The 55th Macau GP begun on Thursday with the first practice and qualifying sessions. The fastest times in both Formula 3 session went to Italian driver Edoardo Mortara (Signature Plus), the runner up in 2008 Formula 2 Euroseries championship. Carlo van Dam, Roberto Streit and Roger van der Zande were all near the top in both sessions.
Macau is the track where it impossible not to crash and there were of these on Thursday. In the first practice Mika Maki crashed heavily at Fishermen’s Bend, Kazuya Oshima and Walter Grubmuller went off at Maternity Bend.
We expect some big changes in the look of the Formula 1 cars in 2009 but as the season progresses the cars change even without new rules. Let’s have a look how the 2008 F1 cars looked in Melbourne and compare them with their look in Brazil:
Ferrari – Melbourne
Ferrari - Brazil