Where the support and jokes end and abuse and racism begin ?

The racism and improper behaviour of fans in Formula 1 is back in the news. Bernie Ecclestone believes that the events earlier this year during Barcelona test were more joke than racist abuse. Jaime Martin, F1 editor of Spanish newspaper Marca accepts they may have been racist “but if Lewis was bald, the insults would have related to his baldness.” Ecclestone also considers the booing aimed at Hamilton in Brazil last weekend or back in Valencia during European GP as normal expressions of allegiance by home fans:

“In Spain people supported Fernando Alonso and in Brazil they supported Felipe Massa. People are entitled to support who they want to support. When was (Hamilton) insulted? Do you remember the Ferrari guys that wore the red wigs? People are expressing themselves.”

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Some thoughts on latest FIA decisions – Calendar, engines, stewards

The World Motor Sport Council met in Paris yesterday and came up with three significant decisions.

1) The 2009 Calendar

I made a post on the latest version of the calendar yesterday (click here). FIA hasn’t commented much on the new calendar. They simply took advantage of the French GP dropping out, moved China to April, kept the summer break and shortened the season by 2 weeks. No mention at all about the Canadian GP. Now I am not sure if this is a good sign or not. The talks between Montreal officials and Bernie Ecclestone took place about 2 weeks ago, there was some sort deadline for some decisions to be made set for the Friday before Brazilian GP. We haven’t heard anything from Canada neither we had from Bernie. All we get is the 3rd version of 2009 calendar. So does it mean this version is finally the final one and we can forget about any North American Formula One race next year or are the talks still going on behind the scenes making further changes to calendar possible ? I would like to start making some plans for Formula 1 travels for next year and knowing which final calendar is really final would be very helpful …

2) Three race engines

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Yet another version of 2009 F1 calendar, China moves to April, Canada still missing

Canadian Grand Prix still missing from the 2009 calendar

Canadian Grand Prix still missing from the 2009 calendar

Another version of 2009 Formula 1 calendar was agreed on today at the World Motorsport Council meeting in Paris. Some changes were expected following last month’s cancellation of the 2009 French GP. The season was shortened by 2 weeks with final race now moved to November 1 instead of previously planned November 15. The biggest chnage is Chinese GP moving to a new slot – Shanghai race will now be the 3rd race of the season after Australia and Malaysia.

I was probably not alone hoping that following the talks between Montreal officials and Bernie Ecclestone we may see the Canadian GP back. Well, that hasn’t happened yet. The revised again calendar still features only 17 races, none of them in North America ….

2009 Formula 1 Calendar – Revised on November 5, 2008

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Renault confirm Fernando Alonso and Nelson Piquet for 2009 season

Fernando Alonso and Nelson Piquet, team mates for one more year

Fernando Alonso and Nelson Piquet, team mates for one more year

ING Renault F1 team made their 2009 drivers line up announcement today. As widely expected Fernando Alonso will stay on after agreeing 2 year extension to his deal with the Enstone team. In Alonso’s case it was more about the driver wanting to stay than the team wanting to retain him. But with all the other potentially competitive seats occupied and Renault steadily progressing towards the front of the grid there was very little doubt about Alonso staying on.

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2008 Formula 1 Season – Road to Championship Title

It feels like ages ago when I went to Melbourne back in March to watch the season opening race. Those days we still had 11 teams and shark fin engine cover was a Red Bull only specialty. So let’s refresh the memory and have a look back at the way the title race evolved in 2008:

Round one – Australia

Lewis Hamilton, winner Australia

Lewis Hamilton, winner Australia

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2008 Brazilian F1 GP – Wolf’s Race Review – This was the grand finale !

Bittersweet victory for Felipe Massa

Bittersweet victory for Felipe Massa

I though that we we had in Brazil in 2007 was as good as it gets when it comes to title deciding season ending Formula 1 races. I was wrong :-) .

Both Hamilton and Massa could have had wrapped the title before the Brazilian Grand Prix. But the reliability problems, driver mistakes, safety cars, rain soaked races and some controversial decisions of stewards created the foundations for potentially interesting final race.

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Lewis Hamilton 2008 World Championship die cast presentation

It took less than 2 days since Lewis Hamilton clinched his first Formula 1 Championship and the first collectable memorabilia has been announced. Available from OnPole is 1:18 scale diecast model Vodafone McLaren Mercedes 2008 Lewis Hamilton World Championship special edition.

For diecast collectors and especially Lewis Hamilton fans this may be something not to be missed out on. If all goes well this Minichamps replica should be available in mid-December.

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2008 Formula 1 Season – Season without driver changes

2008 Formula 1 Drivers

2008 Formula 1 Drivers

The 2008 season is over. Here is the first of the series of posts looking back at the past 7 Formula 1 action filled months.

The 2008 season started with 11 teams and 22 drivers on the grid. Unfortunately Super Aguri team folded after only four races and Takuma Sato and Anthony Davidson found themselves out of job. These two were however the only driver job casualties of the entire season. We did not have a single driver change in 2008 season, no driver missed even one race. All the teams raced all the races with the same drivers.

It may look quite normal in the normal life that people keep their jobs for a year but it definitely is not a common occurence in Formula 1 racing. I checked the records all the way back to 1995. (I did not venture further back to the era of pre-qualifying and 30 – 40 plus drivers per season.) There was not a single season from 1995 to 2007 without some drivers loosing their jobs or at least missing a race. All we had were few “close calls” in recent years:

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2008 Prediction Game Round 18 Results and more

Well, the 2008 Formula 1 title was decided in the last corner and the same can be said about our little prediction game :-) . At the end it was the 25 points bonus for correct pre-season prediction of the 2008 F1 drivers champion that made the difference. Read on to find out the results of the final round as well as the winners of the MUMM bottles:

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2008 Brazilian F1 GP – Win for Massa, title for Hamilton

First title for McLaren since Mika Hakkinen

First title for McLaren since Mika Hakkinen

We can positively say that the title race went down to the wire. Lewis Hamilton had his title in control for most of the race. But then the rain came in the final laps and 2 laps from the end he dropped behing Sebastian Vettel to 6th place. While the cameras focused on Hamilton vs Vettel fight for 5th place the fourth placed Glock slowed down (loosing 22 sec on the last lap) and Hamiton took the 5t place back in the last corner. Massa’s camp did not notice that and went on celebrating, Hamilton’s camp realized that and went on celebrating too … It was bizzare but nail biting finish to the 2008 season, the title was decided on the last corner of the final race of the season :-) .

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2008 Brazilian F1 GP – Live Blog – Race Day

And here comes the season finale. Welcome to the Live Blog coverage of the title deciding Brazilian GP. Join the debate below !

This Live Blog has now ended, you can replay it inside this post.

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Brazilian F1 GP – Helmet Special – Sebastian Vettel

Sebastian Vettel is another driver who decided to race with a bit different helmet this weekend. Piquet celebrates his home race, Barrichello his racing hero, Vettel his last race for his current team Scuderia Toro Rosso. His Brazilian GP helmet sports the farewell message “Grazie mille Toro Rosso!” accompanied with Italian tricolore and photos of his one and half year Toro Rosso career. Here are few images:

Click on the thumbnails to enlarge photos.

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2014 Teams and Drivers

Red Bull
Sebastian VETTEL
Daniel RICCIARDO
Ferrari
Fernando ALONSO
Kimi RAIKKONEN
McLaren
Jenson BUTTON
Kevin MAGNUSSEN
Lotus
Romain GROSJEAN
Pastor MALDONADO
Mercedes
Nico ROSBERG
Lewis HAMILTON
Sauber
Adrian SUTIL
Esteban GUTIEREZ
Force India
Nico HULKENBERG
Sergio PEREZ
Williams
Felipe MASSA
Valtteri BOTTAS
Toro Rosso
Daniil KVYAT
Jean Eric VERGNE
Caterham
Marcus ERICSSON
Kamui KOBAYASHI
Marussia
Jules BIANCHI
Max CHILTON

2014 F1 Calendar

14-16 March - Australia
28-30 March - Malaysia
4-6 April - Bahrain
18-20 April - China
9-11 May - Spain
22-25 May - Monaco
6-8 June - Canada
20-22 June - Austria
4-6 July - Great Britain
18-20 July - Germany
25-27 July - Hungary
22-24 August - Belgium
5-7 September - Italy
19-21 September - Singapore
3-5 October - Japan
10-12 October - Russia
31 October-2 November - USA
7-9 November - Brazil
21-23 November - Abu Dhabi

Archives

2010 Mercedes GP F1 Merchandise
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