Pastor Maldonado, Williams, Abu Dhabi, 2011

Maldonado and Senna criticise penalties

F1 Fanatic round-up

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In the round-up: Bruno Senna and Pastor Maldonado hit out at blue flag penalties.


Top F1 links from the past 24 hours:

Drivers slam ‘inconsistent’ penalties (Autosport)

Bruno Senna: “I think it was a lack of consistency, because we see people doing much, much worse. If you think about it, I probably held Jenson [Button] for one corner, which was turn seven, and people held other guys up for a whole sector and didn’t get a blue flag.”

My season is like a bad round of golf, says Hamilton (Reuters)

“For me it’s irrelevant if [Jenson Button] has finished ahead of me because we want to win the championship.”

Sebastian Vettel reviews his 2011 season (F1)

“It is funny to get comments after a successful race: you hear descriptions like ‘easy’, ‘walk in the park’ and so on – and it was definitely nothing of the sort at any race of the season. Every victory was hard fought and contrary to what people might think, it was closer, much closer than it looked from the outside.”

Ecclestone denies Turkey is on standby for 2012 (ESPN)

“Ecclestone said in Abu Dhabi at the weekend that he believes there will be ‘no problem’ with next year’s Bahrain Grand Prix, adding that ‘it’s on the calendar and we are going to be there.'”

U.S. Grand Prix in Austin: Time to connect the dots (AutoWeek)

“The bottom line is that the deal needs to be done by the first week of December, when there is the final, no-turning-back meeting to set the 2012 F1 schedule. Could the Austin race be moved to 2013? It’s possible, but not without penalties, and who would pay them?”

Ask Donald – Nov. 7 (Indianapolis 500)

“With Nigel Mansell already confirmed as joining Mario Andretti at Newman/Haas and Nelson Piquet expected to return with John Menard (which he did), [Emerson Fittipaldi] was fantasizing that there could be at least five World Champions at Indianapolis in 1993. There would only be four. The next step was to get [Ayrton] Senna on an oval, which never happened, and it wasn’t before he was re-signed with McLaren for another year of F1.”

Pic signs for Marussia… and others stories (Joe Saward)

“It is yet to be officially confirmed but I am reliably assured that Charles Pic has signed to drive for Marussia Racing [currently Virgin] in 2012, with an option to stay with the team in 2013.”

Stefano Coletti via Twitter

“Going to sleep. Testing F1 tomorrow with Toro Rosso. First time in an F1 car, so excited!”

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Comment of the day

Could someone who retires on the first lap deserve to win Driver of the Weekend? Dan_the_McLaren_fan thinks so:

It might look odd, but I voted Sebastian Vettel.

It was clear from the first FP session that it was going to be a race for McLaren, and that it will be difficult for red Bull to win it. But his pole lap was just superb, I would never have believed that Vettel would do it. It’s a shame he retired on the first lap, because I think we could have witnessed a great duel between him and Hamilton.

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On this day in F1

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Keith Collantine
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  • 42 comments on “Maldonado and Senna criticise penalties”

    1. Is that Turkey or Bahrain, Keith?

      1. The story is about Turkey possibly being a replacement should Bahrain not feature due to continued problems. The link is broken though, needs to have:

        removed from it.

      2. Fixed the link.

    2. I have to feel for Pastor. Especially in that second incident, I mean, where do you expect him to go?

      He got well out of his way after the corner and I think it was very unfair to penalize him, as for the other incidents, I can’t remember them.

      1. ***? He decided to overtake the Torro Rosso, completely ruining a fight at the front of the pack. Why couldn’t he have let both drivers through first?

        This is becoming a trend with Maldonado. He gets a penalty and then cries like a little girl. He needs to grow up and play by the rules, because his conduct is not consistent with F1 standards.

        1. I’ll talk about Maldonado’s second penalty since I haven’t seen the other blue flag incidents that resulted in punishment.
          I think stewards were too harsh on Maldonado and Alguersuari in this case. Racing happens all the way through the pack and at the moment front runners were about to lap them Maldonado and Alguersuari were fighting for position and if Alguersuari who was behind him wasn’t going to let front runners lap him Maldonado would lose position to him.
          Also, he was actually pulling away from them on the straight and he really had to get completely off the track and got a lot of dirt on his tyres so he could be lapped.
          Sometimes, marshals are really over-zealous with showing blue flags and lapped drivers must lose a lot of valuable lap time to move out to somebody who is maybe even a few seconds behind.

          The attitude of front runners towards drivers from the back is sometimes really annoying. The great example was also seen in this race when Hamilton got furious with Barrichello for having a nerve to unlap himself. If he managed to do that he was obviously running faster then him and had every right to get back to the leading lap.

          1. Sometimes, marshals are really over-zealous with showing blue flags and lapped drivers must lose a lot of valuable lap time to move out to somebody who is maybe even a few seconds behind.

            Backmakers get the blue flag, and the blue light on the steering wheel, if the gap is under 1.5 sec. So, not a few seconds.

            It would have been enough if Algelsuari and Maldonado lift off for 1 sec on the sraigth. Yes, they lose some time, but both of them losing it, all of the backmarkers losing it.

            And for the Hamilton vs. Barichello case. Of course BAR has every right to unlap himself, but it worths nothing, if he knows that he is only faster at the end of the straight. So what was the purpose of that “attack”? Get ahead, just so he can let hamilton by agiain in 3 corners?

            1. In Rubens case I’d once again. Can and should are two very different things.

    3. “It is yet to be officially confirmed but I am reliably assured that Charles Pic has signed to drive for Marussia Racing [currently Virgin] in 2012, with an option to stay with the team in 2013.”

      The same way you were reliably informed that Toro Rosso would become known as Team UAE, Joe?

      1. He is not the only one to report it.

        Again, I have to ask: Why are you so focused on Joe Saward? If you don’t like him, don’t comment about him.

        Of course, I understand that you feel the need to monopolize the comment section of this site, so perhaps you simply can not help it.

        One final thought about Joe: Many in the paddock respect his work and trust his reporting, but no one in the paddock (I have checked) has heard of Prisoner Monkeys.

        Does Joe always get it right? Nope, but no journalist does. He gets it right more often than not, and more often than you, even with the volumes worth of comments that you make.

        1. no one in the paddock (I have checked) has heard of Prisoner Monkeys

          Of course not. Do you think “Prisoner Monkeys” is my real name?

          1. I noticed on James Allen’s blog that you tried to claim Saward was the source of the Charles Pic rumours, but in reality it had been reported in the French press before Saward posted the story on his blog (as you undoubtedly knew).

            Again, if you think you know more about the goings on in F1 than Joe Saward, start your own blog, rather than continuing to monopolize the comment section of this site.

            Many, and I do mean many, readers of this site agree with me. I am speaking for the silent majority.

        2. Any self respecting journalist should be able to take criticism from the world, including @prisoner-monkeys We are right to criticise, Saward comes out with some complete rubbish.

          1. I understand PM has many fans on this site, for reasons that no rational person could understand, but he is not the authority on all things F1 and Saward.

            I noticed on James Allen’s blog that PM tried to claim Saward was the source of the Charles Pic rumours, but in reality it had been reported in the French press before Saward posted the story on his blog (as PM undoubtedly knew).

      2. Just like Jarno Trulli is the 3rd tallest driver, Prisoner Monkeys?

        1. Furthermore, just because it hasn’t come true yet, doesn’t mean it won’t. I’ve found over the last few years he is right more often than he is wrong.

          But hey, when all you do is comment on someone else’s website, clamouring for attention and infamy on the back of someone else’s work, its easier to be as arrogant as you.

    4. Great, ..I just posted a forum topic about the Blue Flags in particular. I think leading cars may be expecting too much when it comes to lapping other cars… But i do question if Maldonado had indeed passed three blue flags without complying to deserve the penalty…

      1. I’m wondering with the availability of Kers and DRS do we really need blue flags.

        1. It’s not that simple, Rocky. If a lapped driver is on the racing line on a circuit like Monaco or Abu Dhabi, KERS and DRS won’t do much to help the leading driver overtake.

          1. Indeed PM, we saw how the Renaults and STR cars, but also the Williams were running away from the chasers at times during the race (Rubens even unlapping from Hamilton).

      2. Good job, will check it out. I hope this will lead to some discussion about blue flags. Losing 4s every time is quite a lot. For those that are already on the back foot because you are a two or more seconds per lap slower than the front end of the grid it is a lot, but I suppose it is worse the closer your pace is to the fastest, ie. when you are “out of position”.

        I do think however, that if you are, and you are stuck behind a slower car (otherwise you wouldn’t be lapped but just driving almost a lap behind the leader) it might also offer a good opportunity to get past – but that’s tricky to do in such a way you don’t hinder a fight at the sharp end.

    5. Someone has registered the domain name and currently shows a placeholder webpage. A quick check of WhoIs shows that the registrar was EPAG Domainservices GmbH, and it was registered on October 27. From the looks of things, EPAG is a brand protection service – they register domain names and hold onto them on behalf of their clients to prevent someone from beating their client to the name. For example, back in August a brand protection service called MarkMonitor registered twenty domain names under the title “skyfall” and “jamesbond” (ie “”). In November, Skyfall was announced as the title of the twenty-third Bond film. It’s possible that EPAG have done something similar here, registering a whole host of domain names under the “qnbwilliams” banner, possibly foreshadowing an annoucement that Williams and the Qatar National Bank are joining forces.

      Of course, this could simply be someone jumping the gun, trying to get free web traffic in anticiaption of an annoucement – is the only registered domain name that I can find (for instance, there is no or Secondly, Williams have an existing contract with AT&T for title sponsorship. I do not know when this contract ends. Thirdly, despite the contract between AT&T and Williams, the Williams website is just; the title sponsor is not included. And finally, while both Williams and Raikkonen have confirmed that they have been in negotiations, Raikkonen himself said nothing has been signed yet.

      1. Nice spot. A similar thing happened back in 2009 with Brawn GP: Though clearly that didn’t turn out to be quite right, so maybe we shouldn’t read too much into it

        1. @ned-flanders

          Personally, I don’t think this is legit. Williams’ current domain name does not include their title sponsor (though “” redirects to, and only one “qnbwilliams” domain has been registered. I suspect it is someone who is taking a gamble on a team name and will try and sell it on to the team if and when the deal is finalised. The other alternative is that someone is trying to get free web traffic, but the page is just a placeholder – it doesn’t redirect to anywhere, Williams or otherwise.

          1. Sounds like some kind of cybersquating to me. They could have done it with James Bond as well.

          2. In case you didn’t know, trying to make some cash off of a website with another brand’s name is illegal; so that may not be the case unless someone is oblivious to the US law. It is however possible that the domain could be used in a similar manner (if there isn’t a UK law preventing profit from cybersquatting).


      2. This may be just a coincidence or someone attempting to guess the team’s name, but for the thinking you’re a genious @prisoner-monkeys!

    6. Happy Birthday Loki and Tom Watson.

      1. yeah, Happy Birthday to you guys!

        1. Happy birthday indeed @loki and @tom-watson.

          It seems to me there haven’t been many birthdays over the last weeks, or did I just miss them?

    7. Not good, that inside look behind the scenes of what is happening around the AustinGP deal. Lets hope the parties see reason and can agree on something in time to make the race happen.

      1. And Ecclestone must be glad that at least he has a good chance with the New Jersey grand prix so that there will be a GP in the US in 2013 despite Austin having become a risk.

    8. I haven’t watched the incidents that brought the stewards to penalise Maldonado, Senna and Alguersuari so I cannot judge the decisions but it seems unlikely that many drivers suddenly forgot how to let the faster cars pass or deliberately hindered them. So it sounds likely that the stewards were simply inconsistent. Anyway, these stories have become boring, I think we should get rid of the blue flags completely.

      1. I think we should get rid of the blue flags completely

        That would be a very VERY wrong decision.

      2. @Girts

        I think we should get rid of the blue flags completely.

        I largely agree. We did a poll on this last year and most people wanted to see the blue flag rules relaxed or scrapped altogether:

      3. Not sure we should get rid of them altogether @girts, but I fully endorse all but taking them away and show them only for instances where a driver is clearly not giving way and getting in the way of a battle at the front too much as discussed in Keiths article last year.

    9. For me it’s irrelevant if [Jenson Button] has finished ahead of me because we want to win the championship.

      I don’t believe you Lewis. Nobody wants to be beaten, stop saying you don’t care because it’s untrue.

      1. Normally when a driver says that (like MSC did after India), I’d say the same you are saying @fixy. Sure, the WDC is what you wanted to aim for, but that was out of reach, so the next best thing then is your teammate, saying otherwise is simply not true.

        But Hamilton has already written off this year as due to his own personal issues he couldn’t overcome, and thinks that without those mistakes, he would be well clear of Button, so it’s nothing to do with Button, apart from the difference that he did get things together.

        Does that make sense?

        I agree, it still means beaten by his team mate, one way or the other, but it also seems like a good way to get over it, I suppose. Blame off-track personal things, and with those out of the way you will be WDC next year, car permitting.

      2. Lewis just beat Alonso on the weekend, I think he will be very happy with that.

    10. Autosport: Massa believes track changes in Abu Dhabi needed – was I the only one who thought he was going to call the curbs in the chicanes out?

      He’s saying the hairpin should be wider though; might well be right about that.

      And Horner wants Webber’s place back from Button’s DRS use in the 2nd zone.

      1. eh, make that third, Webber never had sight of 2nd.

    11. D’Ambrosio has largely been a safe pair of hands. Pic is good, a bit of a lacklustre start to the season but certainty not enough to warrant a seat over D’Ambrosio…assumimg the Belgian will need to make way.

      I don’t get Saward’s, or anyone elses, angle on this. Some major French sponsorship can be the only thing.

    Comments are closed.