Lewis Hamilton disqualified from Australian GP
Lewis Hamilton has been disqualified from the Australian Grand Prix and excluded from the results. Jarno Trulli’s 25 sec penalty has been rescinded and so Trulli keeps the 3rd place he achieved on track.
Both drivers were summoned to meet the stewards in Malaysia this morning following new evidence regarding their behaviour behind the safety car. The new evidence suggested that Hamilton might have mislead the Australian GP stewards. After hearing out both drivers again the stewards decided the way they decided.
A statement issued by the stewards:
Jenson Button, Brawn GP
Before moving on to Malaysian GP here is quick look back at the 2009 Australian GP. I watched the race live in Melbourne and although thanks to the nice people from Kangaroo TV I had the pleasure to use their handy little device there was so much happening and so fast that I may have to watch the race again on TV to see what was actually going on. So instead of reviewing the race that I enjoyed but could not really follow to the detail here is my brief review of the teams:
Here is selection of my photos from Sunday in Melbourne. There aren’t too many for 3 reasons – 1) I was watching the race, 2) The light was really bad for getting the pictures right, 3) My lense died half way through the race and I had to switch to manual mode (not easy in those conditions). But there still are few interesting shots that I am quite happy with:
Jenson Button - Winner of 2009 Australian GP
Back from track, actually back at the airport. What an exciting race it was. The Brawn fairy tale continued on Sunday… Jenson Button scored the second win of his career after leading from start to finish. Rubens Barrichello completed Brawn GP 1-2 finish after Kubica/Vettel crash promoted him from 4th to 2nd with 3 laps to go. Jarno Trulli was the 3rd man on the podium but was later penalized for overtaking Hamilton when safety car was out and dropped back to 12th place. Sebastian Vettel was penalized with 10 places grid penalty for Sepang race and his team USD50,000 for instructing him to stay on track despite running on three wheels only.
And so Lewis Hamilton took the 3rd place on a day when even a single point would be considered success for McLaren. The only team other than brawn with both cars in points is … Toro Rosso. And Sebastien Buemi resume will say that he finished on points on his F1 debut … None of the Ferraris finished the race.
2009 Australian GP Result:
Here is a selection of my photos from Saturday in Melbourne. All the pictures are taken between turns 1, 2, 3. There is also a photo of the double seater Minardi F1 car that was on the track before the free practice, driven by Zsolt Baumgartner. Click on the thumbnails to enlarge the images.
It is back of the grid for Toyota after exclusion from qualifying
Both Toyota cars were excluded from qualifying after failing post-qualifying technical inspections by the FIA. It was found that Toyota’s rear wing elements were in breach of the rules:
Jenson Button's Virgin branded Brawn GP car going for pole position
What a day for Brawn GP. First they get their new sponsor – Richard Branson’s Virgin – and then they lock the front row for tomorrow’s Australian GP all for themselves.
Jenson Button will start from the pole position for the first time since 2006 Australian GP, Rubens Barrichello will line up next to him on P2. Perhaps surprisingly P3 went to Sebastian Vettel in Red Bull, P4 to Robert Kubica in BWM Sauber. Nico Rosberg, fastest in all three practice sessions will start from P5. Perhaps a bit disappointed are Toyota drivers with Glock P6 and Trulli P8, especially Trulli who was regarded as dark horse for pole position following impressive showing in practice sessions. Ferrari’s made it to Q3 but only managed P7 (Massa) and P9 (Raikkonen). Mark Webber completes the top 10.
I was lucky enough to get myself into the Paddock Club on Friday. Although my overall impression from the whole experience is rather mixed (I may write another post on that one day) the time spent in the pitlane was definitelly worth the effort to get the pass sorted out . I was quite surprised how rather freely we were allowed to roam around the pitlane and how close it was possible to get to the cars and to some drivers. But no diffusers were on display… Here are the pictures, click on the thumbnails to enlarge the photos:
Nico Rosberg, fastest man on track today
Interesting day today. It started for me with a walk through the pitlane (pictures later today) and continued with quite exciting practice sessions. During the first practice most of the cars were all over the place, only Brawn and Williams looked nice and steady. The most shaky (at least from where i was standing) were Renaults. The handling of cars however improved during the second session. The talking points of the day however will be:
- the diffusers, as the cars who use the controversial diffuser design were the fastest ones
- the degradation of the super soft tyres
- the pace of McLaren and perhaps also of Ferrari
I am about to move in the Albert Park direction for Friday practice, before doing so, here is quick summary of the F1 news from Thursday:
The diffuser issue – Following the protest from Ferrari, Renault and Red Bull (and the thrown out one from BMW Sauber) the stewards investigated the controversial diffusers used by Toyota, Williams and Brawn GP. Late on Thusrday night he FIA stewards rejected the protest and Brawn GP, Williams and Toyota have been given the go-ahead to take part in the Australian Grand Prix. It may not be the end of the story with appeals expected but for now everybody can focus on racing in Melbourne.
Jenson Button’s new 2009 helmet – Jenson Button will be racing with new helmet. The union jack colours will be replaced with yellow design – see all 2009 drivers helmets here.
Virgin to sponsor Brawn GP – Reports by Times online and Autosport suggest that Sir Richard Branson is enroute to Melbourne to finalize a major sponsorship deal with Ross Brawn’s team. Earlier yesterday Brawn GP announced partnership with Henri Lloyd – a British clothing manufacturer – as Official Supplier of Clothing and Footwear Technology.
FIA revised the final 2009 entry list returning the numbers 20 and 21 to Force India and assigning 22 and 23 to Brawn GP. There will be no car number 18 and 19 on the grid this year.
Lewis Hamilton joined GPDA.
FOTA confirmed that Briatore, Howett and Dennis represented the position of the entire FOTA when they met with Ecclestone last week.
And Fernando Alonso added his voice to the opposition against the winner takes points system.
And now it is time to go to the track.
Enjoying the sea view before the action begins tomorrow
I just arrived in Melbourne after an overnight flight. And here is the first photo . Looks like I am staying in the same hotel as BBC Sport crew and the Renault engine part of Red Bull delegation.
It is quite windy at the moment and the skies are definitelly more grey than blue. Quite a difference compared to almost 40 degrees temperatures last year.
Here is 8 minutes video preview of 2009 F1 season and 2009 Australian GP. This was a very quick edit as I needed to get it all together before leaving for Australia. Included is the awesome animated footage from Red Bull that you might have already seen – the older with Sebastien Vettel explaining the new rules as well as the very recent one showing us how the F1 car comes to life. The animations are great, they explain the changes in F1 ahead of 2009 season quite well and so they made it to this video edit . Then of course the virtual lap of Albert Park circuit in Melbourne, few shots of Toyota, McLaren and Red Bull, one engine blow up, sound of Mercedes F1 V8 engine and introduction of all 2009 F1 cars and drivers.