Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull, Valencia, 2012

Overheating caused Vettel and Grosjean retirements

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Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull, Valencia, 2012In the round-up: Sebastian Vettel and Romain Grosjean’s alternator failures during the Euoprean Grand Prix were caused by overheating.


Top F1 links from the past 24 hours:

Renault: European GP Alternator Failures (ScarbsF1)

“In an F1 car the alternators function is constantly monitored, the power output and the unit?s temperature are visible via telemetry by the team in the pits. In the case of the Valencia failures, the teams already knew before the Safety Car the units were overheating and would fail.”

Glock: I?ll be fighting fit for Silverstone (F1)

“I still feel a little weak in the legs, but otherwise I am okay. It was obviously very disappointing that I was forced to miss the race in Valencia, but that is the way it goes sometimes. You cannot just ignore the symptoms I was experiencing.”

Boullier urges caution as F1 costs deadline looms (Autosport)

“We made some decisions already in the past which cost us money now; and may cost us more money in the future. So we need to make sure that we go the right way and don’t rush.”

Attention on Ecclestone after German banker jailed (The Guardian)

“Prosecutor Christoph Rodler yesterday rejected Ecclestone?s defence. ‘Ecclestone was not a victim of blackmail, but a fellow participant in bribery,’ he told the court in his closing statements.”

London GP a distant dream despite hype (Reuters)

“The idea, at this stage no more than a bit of fun to create some headlines and buzz ahead of the country’s annual race in the rural heart of England, won the support of Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone.”

Boris Johnson ‘broadly positive’ over London Grand Prix plan

“Mr Johnson said he was ‘broadly positive’ about the plan as long as air quality and noise issues were addressed.”

Sir Stirling Moss hopes London Grand Prix will finally be possible (The Guardian)

“I think it would be tremendous for London and for our sport and it would bring an enormous amount of money in. When you get a whole lot coming in where expense doesn’t really matter, it’s an enormous filler.”

Comment of the day

Should we have grid guys as well as grid girls? Or is the whole thing a bit dodgy? Chris Goldsmith offers a view:

The only thing with using ??grid boys? for female drivers, is that it makes an implicit sexual connection between the driver and the person holding their grid number.

While I do agree it?s fairly archaic to have grid girls, isn?t the problem more that there are people being employed solely for the sexual gratification of people around them, rather than some kind of gender inequality?

If you replace women with men for female drivers, what you?re doing, in effect, is confirming that they are there specifically because the driver is supposed to be physically attracted with them.

Of course, we know that the purpose really is to add a little bit of eye candy for the (historically predominantly male) viewers. That people are being employed as eye candy at all is something which should be addressed, and gender equality in this case only reinforces the negative connotations of why these people are there in the first place.
Chris Goldsmith

From the forum

Happy birthday!

No F1 Fanatic birthdays today.

If you want a birthday shout-out tell us when yours is by emailling me, using Twitter or adding to the list here.

On this day in F1

Michael Schumacher scored a comfortable victory in the French Grand Prix 15 years ago today, winning from pole position and setting fastest lap. Fellow German Heinz-Harald Frentzen was second.

Their team mates were third and fourth, Eddie Irvine holding Jacques Villeneuve back, the Williams driver spinning at the final corner in his attempts to pass the Ferrari.

Famously, the elder Schumacher even had the presence of mind to allow brother Ralf Schumacher to unlap himself in the closing stages. The Jordan driver went on to take sixth place from David Coulthard on the final lap.

Here’s the start of the race:

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  • 140 comments on “Overheating caused Vettel and Grosjean retirements”

    1. Ignoring the fact that the whole thing is likely to be nonsense, I’d love to know what Boris is talking about when saying that air quality should be addressed. Does he think 24 F1 cars would be more polluting than an entire days worth of normal London traffic.

      1. What he means is that F1 cars should pay the congestion charge.

        1. Haha, so what would that cost them?

          1. Well KERS means they could probably pass as hybrids, so nothing!

            1. See, that implies they are environmentally friendly though…


              If anyone asks, British law says they are.

      2. Another strange comment from that article:

        London Assembly Green Party member Darren Johnson said: “Bernie Ecclestone’s proposal is a terrible idea at a time when we want to make our streets safer and more pedestrian and cycle friendly.

        To me this reads: I am from the green party and I don’t like Formula 1 racing.

        1. I assume they think an F1 street race happens with the normal traffic.

          1. As if Bernie would ever allow such close access without paying!

        2. @adrianmorse That’s one of the funniest political statements I’ve heard as an opposition statement for a Grand Prix.

          1. Maybe he is worried about people getting hurt in the crowd @chalky :-)

            1. That’s not what he said though.

        3. @adrianmorse, Darren Johnson’s comment continued:

          “Formula One should stick to the dedicated race tracks and leave our streets for ordinary Londoners to enjoy. I hope the Mayor joins me in opposing this idea, which is completely unsuitable for London.”

          So he’s not against F1, he just wants F1 to keep to dedicated circuits, such as Silverstone, rather than turning London into a temporary GP circuit.

      3. @matt90 Yet, bit silly that really. I guess he’s got to be seen to at least look at it before the green police get on his back.

      4. themagicofspeed (@)
        30th June 2012, 0:00

        In fact, a single transatlantic flight emits more carbon than 10 F1 cars emit in one season. And i suspect that all the London cabs and buses arent exactly squeaky clean carbon free when it comes to emissions, certainly because of the purity of the fuel compared to forecourt fuel (it is the same, but highly octonated and purified) and temperature at which the mixture is ignited in the combustion chambers inside F1 engines (up to 8,000C) means a lot of the otherwise harmful gasses are burnt away and really there is only broken down HCOs coming out, and nitrogen, which is produced in the chemical reaction of petrol combustion in large quantities and is totally harmless. It works much the same way as a cat converter does on a road car.

        (Im a mechanic by day so i spout useless knowledge, sorry)

    2. I love the COTD. Perhaps we could have a mix of grid girls and grid guys, but they could all be dressed and styled totally androgenously, so no spectators could tell which is which.

      Im thinking loose-fitting pantsuits, bowl-cuts, platform boots, and mustaches/muttenchops that would be wispy enough to be almost imperceptible. Clearly this is the most politically correct option for the future of formula 1 race promotion…

      1. “…most politically correct option…” /facepalm

        I hope I’m gone, when this happens!

      2. For a one off, that would be pretty funny and nicely ridiculous.

      3. We’re talking about Borat or Freddie Mercury?

        1. mankinis for everyone!

      4. I would replace the grid girls with the reserve drivers, at least it gives them something to do ;)

        1. Thanks for my first laugh of the day. But I guess, if it happens, we will see a lot of Williams in TV (I think Susie Wolff is quite pretty).

      5. I didn’t know the race would be going through Soho!

      6. Well,why not make the grid boys wear a bra? For equality reasons, that is :-)

    3. That is a fantastic Comment of the Day. Personally, I think that if it’s necessary to have model-grade attractive people to serve as eye candy at a grand prix, the numbers should be split equally between the sexes and alternated up and down the grid. However, what I’d prefer to that is what someone else (can’t remember who now) on this site suggested the last time this subject came up: why not have some local kids do it? How exciting would that be for them? I’m sure that will never happen, however; the element of sex(ism) in F1 seems to be something a lot of people are not willing to part with. It’s tradition!

      1. I disagree with you on mixing up the sexes.

        But the kids idea is perfect. Mixed up with some charity promo or global peace would be great awareness campaign, the only problem I see is to get them to stay at same spot for too long :D

        Instead of trying to force our ideas (that a frankly outdated), lets focus on what is important – kids. Get them awareness and education and they will make smart choices.

        1. I disagree with you on mixing up the sexes.


        2. @aka_robyn
          Why not give each driver a grid girl and a grid guy. Solves the grid girls are “sexist” problem. Although it doesn’t solve the “using people as sex symbols” problems. Although that problem has never bothered me. I’m much more interested in looking at the cars.

          Although I do remember reading an excellent opinion by @damonsmedley on the matter in the round up from 2 days ago.

        3. Maybe we could have the top 24 kart racers from each country getting to act as grid people in F1.

      2. You can’t have kid’s wandering around an F1 grid just before a race, obviously, that’s a dangerous. That being said, in NASCAR, drivers have thier wifes and kids with them before races.

        1. How is that more dangerous for kids than for anyone else? I’m honestly curious!

          1. That’s a much better idea. Sometimes they have school children in a choir singing the national anthem before sporting events, and doing something similar (only having children hold the driver’s number) would be a little bit more fun.

            The only problem with “getting rid of” grid girls is that the girls themselves would feel as though their job has been taken away from them and a major platform for aspiring models goes with it. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t feel grid girls add anything to F1, and I probably wouldn’t even notice for a few races if they suddenly weren’t there, but these women actually quite like the opportunity. I don’t think we should forget this. International exposure could help a potential employer spot the person they want to model a certain brand or whatever.

            1. Just like FIFA has kids walking out with the team. There could be a couple of young-un’s holding the number cards for each driver!

            2. @damonsmedley
              That was my first thought too, personally I’m not fussed either way, but we’re talking about people’s jobs. Oh, and I suppose annoying feminists is another plus…

            3. Not sure that F1’s priority is as a career platform for aspiring models… wouldn’t it be more important to see F1 as a sport that encourages all people to take part and enjoy it?
              Get rid of grid girls and no we don’t want grid boys instead or as well as.
              That’s akin to saying get rid of sexism towards women by increasing derogatory comments towards men… not the idea at all!

              I prefer the idea that women engineers, mechanics, managers and drivers are the most prominent face of women in F1 and that’s not the case if we continue to see grid girls.
              I’d go with the idea of local young people (teenagers for safety) holding the grid number board as a gesture that F1 cares about the local community.

          2. Drop Valencia!
            29th June 2012, 5:29

            Can’t speak for matty #2 but I don’t take my son into “dangerous” situations that i happily put myself into… That said I think the grid is very very safe when stationary…

      3. Are you planning on discriminating against the obese and the handicapped, shame on you sir, you are a cad and a bounder!

        1. That’s “ma’am,” thanks! Being called a cad and a bounder would be a first for me, I must say. ;-)

          Not discriminating against the obese or the handicapped, though. In my opinion, there’s nothing to prevent people in either category from being grid, er, people. ;-)

        2. No, I would rather look at girls, the same way I like milk chocolate and not black!

          Maan, you inserted a disturbing pictures into my mind of all the cases you mentioned :(

      4. Kids involved in racing would be fantastic!

        1. Karting…or the “doesn’t resemble the real cars” called Racing Games (Well, mostly).

      5. @aka_robyn,

        I’m sure that will never happen, however; the element of sex(ism) in F1 seems to be something a lot of people are not willing to part with. It’s tradition!

        It’s not just F1; go to any motorsports event and there are bound to be girls dressed up by sponsors in tight and revealing clothes. Having said that, F1 could take the lead in changing this tradition by replacing the grid girls. Kids are a good idea, but why not get any fans to do the job, be they portly middle-aged men, children or attractive looking women? That would give DC and Brundle someone to talk to during their grid walks, in case the drivers are too pre-occupied to talk.

        1. There’s something to that idea @adrianmorse, teams could have a competition for fans with winners who’d be grid person and VIP during the weekend; would be a great way to involve fans more. And if some of those fans want to be model as @damonsmedly reminded us the grid-girls often are, they can still be noticed that way.

        2. No, replace the grid girls with journalists! Maybe someday Prisoner Monkeys will appear on TV!

      6. That is exactly what I would like to see @aka_robyn, having local kids who often help out on track or aspiring racers or just local folklore to give the race promotors a bit more scope to show where the race is taking place and what great people help in making it possible.

      7. I love your idea; either local kids or local fans would be amazing, frankly. Like you, I’m a lady F1 fan, and agree with the COTD as well. Can’t tell you the number of times I’ve heard (always male) F1 fans insist that grid girls, and the inherent sexism in their entire role, are “tradition!” I’d love to see F1, for a change, pushing some more progressive ideas.

      8. Great idea…anyway we can get attention for that idea? It would be like the kids that run out at football matches.

      9. I actually think that having kids do it is a totally fantastic idea. Like, maybe have it as a prize for science fair winners from each of the schools in the area, or something like that actually tied to academic achievement. That would be some superb PR for F1.

        I was also thinking it would be cool for the race promoters to have a raffle a week before the race, and randomly select general admission ticket holders to be gridpersons.

        Overall, I just think it would be awesome if the FIA or FOM put pressure on race promoters to do something clever (and preferably charitable) in selecting gridpersons. That said, I would be lying if I said that I had a problem with the grid girls as they are…

    4. Thier’s nothing wrong with grid girls. Relax people.

      1. There’s something I can agree with.

      2. That’s why they’re there

    5. “That people are being employed as eye candy at all is something which should be addressed”
      I’m sure there are plenty of women working in that area who would disagree.

      1. Precisely. It’s not like they’re being forced into doing it. Mostly the girls are signed up to an agency and the sponsors/teams/whoever will source them out from agencies. They’re usually covered in sponsorship from the team/event sponsor and with the audience perceived to be mostly male, a company will feel they’re more likely to generate awareness of their product if the logo is plastered all over a pretty woman than a bloke or a child because men are more likely to look at a pretty woman.

        I’ve seen male grid models on occasion in other series and if whoever is hiring them feel a male model would be more appropriate, then they’ll hire a male model. No need to force equality into something that doesn’t need it – hiring people because they have to rather than because they want to is far more insulting if you ask me.

        1. You summed that up far better than I could @dan-thorn

    6. i’ll be extremely disappointed if they get rid of the grid girls because:
      1. i appreciate the feminine form, and in so many nationalities too!
      2. the girls don’t seem to mind
      3. venus and david aren’t politically correct either

      here i thought it was just america that held a nonsensical and hypocritical view of the evil that is the human body, while selling sex and sexiness at every opportunity – an australian olympic swimmer is now getting grief for posting a picture of herself….in a swimsuit.

      in the words of dr. farnsworth:
      “i don’t want to live in this world any more.”
      *blasts off in a rocket ship*

      1. @F1yankee, absolutely right, anyone here want to volunteer to tell the grid girls that thanks to his/her efforts their services will no longer be required.

      2. The “political correctness” here isn’t about the girls showing too much skin or being sexy or whatever, it is the fact that they are there to serve as eye-candy for heterosexual men.

        I suppose the most “political correct” (whatever that means) thing to do, apart from removing the concept altogheter, is to estimate how big part of the audience consists of heterosexual women and homosexual men, and to supply sexy grid blokes accordingly.

        The best solution in my opinion is, as I mentioned before, is replacing the models with local kids and fans who actually appreciate being there, instead of girls appreciating a paycheck for smiling and waving.

        1. there’s already a sexy grid bloke, you’ve seen him i’m sure – short, black pants, white shirt, white hair, glasses, answers to the title “supremo”…

          1. @F1Yankee, yes, I’ve seen him, certainly seems popular with the girls. What’s he got that I don’t I wonder.

            1. Huge amounts of cash.

        2. I’ve been watching F1 for so long, the whole “grid girl” thing is pretty ingrained with me. I’ve honestly never thought about them one way or another in terms of being appropriate or not, nor would I lose any sleep over it if they were to go away. Actually, your idea of having local kids, boys and girls, taking up that role is a good one. Hard to imagine anyone complaining, except for Bernie!

      3. here i thought it was just america that held a nonsensical and hypocritical view of the evil that is the human body

        @f1yankee It isn’t about that. It’s about the message it sends to women and girls who are fans of the sport, or who might be inclined to become fans of the sport — or, heaven forbid, who want to get involved in the sport: “Well, see, F1 is kind of a guy thing… But hey, if you’d like to serve as part of the scenery, maybe we can talk!”

        1. @aka_robyn i’ll respect your opinion, but i’ll disagree. the only people thinking like that are so closed-minded it doesn’t matter what you say or do, nothing gets through. any girl/woman i’ve met that’s my age (37) or younger does what they want, and succeeds or fails on their own merit. i’ve even worked with a petite girl when i was a telecom lineman, a job with physical demands clearly favoring men.

    7. I’m a hetreosexual woman (straight in simpleton speak.) Although I think it is a bit sexist having good looking girls parading about simply as eye candy for the blokes (which are the biggest audience for f1) I’ve become used to it and I do think pretty girls are the best people to be cheering on drivers, rather than those that are less attractive…

      I laugh at the fact that hot girls are able to take advantage of the wealthy organisers so fair play to them. Girl Power! If I started seeing chirstiano ronaldo parading about for a female f1 driver, although I think he’s really hot, I’d find it quite awkward. (unless he had a 20 minute spot to show off ALL his goods lol) but I’m not selfish I don’t think we should start seeing men instead of grid girls (which will always be the best sex to clap on the podium) Girls just lack something u blokes lack – the ability to find the same sex the most pretty!

      Although u guys can still please me more than a woman there’s way too many ugly geezers and we don’t wanna chance seeing them on tv haha

      1. well i think its sexist to have grid girls and no grid guys

    8. I’m not a fan of grid girls either. Very 20th Century. The post race “corridor” they form is particularly cringeworthy.

      Perhaps F1 could make a switch to grid animals? Then the organisers of each GP could use an animal typical of their country… kangaroos in Australia, elephants in India, moose in Canada, and so on…

      …Or they could just scrap the whole stupid system. After all, us true fans know the car numbers, we don’t need any man, woman or animal to hold a sign telling us!

      1. I like the idea of “grid animals” – I think I prefer the idea of a wombat for Australia though!

        And continuing on the theme – what about a pigeon or seagull for Britain, an Eagle (Roman) for Italy? Dog for Korea anyone….? And how about Godzilla for Japan, bald eagle for the USA (or rattlesnake for Austin)…..

        Oh and apparently the national bird of Singapore is the crow. Which is almost as bad as my suggestion of pigeon for Britain…

        1. Somehow my brain came to the image of a wombat in a F1 get up, piloting one of the cars.

          I like it!

        2. Surely a black, constantly prancing horse would be more fit in Italy?

          1. And of course for India a Tiger.

            1. At least the grid would be less crowded then @hohum!

              The bird thing might be a bit of bird ***p though

      2. @nedflanders, They hold signs !?

      3. LMAO at Grid Animals..

        Oh wait… on a serious note, it isn’t all that bad an idea. As long as the Kangaroo doesn’t go around punching drivers in the face

        1. TheMacarenaLaren
          29th June 2012, 16:21

          That could have been great in the 1970’s

          and it’s go go go!!!! james hunt and bouncy the kangaroo engage in 15 rounds of boxing to decide the heavy weight championship of the worlldddd!!!!! oh what a superb straight right paw from bouncy to start things off and that’s sure to have shaken james out of his morning hang over, i was right! hunt comes back with a beautiful uppercut slipping right through the marsupials defense!…

      4. Maybe fans should replace the girls. Run a contest before the race and winners get the chance to be there.

      5. Yay! Let’s have dragons for CHina… :P

      6. Yeah, and we can get rid of all this 20th century track racing and go for an online playstation match! Cost control- check. Greenness – check. Safety – check. Excitement … check again ;-)

    9. While I do like the COTD, there’s one thing we’re forgetting here: the “grid guys” or what would be eye candy for the ladies are already there – the drivers themselves!

      1. If there was a female driver then, wouldn’t we require a grid guy to balance it out then?

        The grid girl thing, appears to be archaic and pointless, however, I’d point to the structure it creates for the people watching.

        1. Sure, I wouldn’t mind that. But there’s no female driver right now. Let’s cross that bridge when we get there.

      2. Except they’re short, skinny and wearing overalls. Besides, the grid isn’t exactly made up of 24 Johnny Depps.

        1. Short and skinny? Have you seen Webber or Grosjean? Those guys are tall.

          Johnny Depps they are not, but you’d have to say most of them are good looking. There’s something for everyone – and you’ll see that in people’s tweets. ;)

        2. TheMacarenaLaren
          29th June 2012, 16:26

          skinny? they have necks probably as thick as your thigh lol.

    10. Thanks to Keith and Scarbs for the background on the alternator failures.

      There is also a connection in that story to Boulliers comment on resource restriction.
      Restricting obvious areas of development merely drives development into more obscure and exotic ( expensive) areas, current restrictions on development leave aerodynamics as the only area where gains can be made, the result is hundreds of millions of dollars being spent to try to make a 1 tenth of 1 % gain, and worse, none of this research has any practical application outside of F1.

      1. Yes, yes.

        This new engine thing is going to blow out of proportion, lucky for us, some good tech might come out of it.

        1. Yes, and just read Jaguar are introducing a 2L. turbo engine across the range. Higher outputs and greater efficiency from smaller engines is the future, F1 engine development will have relevance to roadcar manufacturers until it is frozen.

      2. @hohum Exactly. The teams have a budget for the season regardless of the rules. If the only areas they can develop are the obscure things then they’re going to spend the whole budget on those things because if they don’t someone else will and out develop them.

        On another note, I also found it interesting in Scarb’s article that Renault claim the alternator in Vettel’s car was already overheating before the safety car and the slow laps behind it actually cooled it due to the reduced load. Red Bull might have been unhappy with the safety car deployment but if what Renault’s saying is true then the safety car just delayed the inevitable.

      3. leave aerodynamics as the only area where gains can be made

        That’s not true at all.

        For examples, The massive amount of work that goes into Suspension layouts and gearboxes.

        Aero is just a lot easier to see.

        1. @mike, I disagree, the gearboxes are limited to 7 speeds, and suspension design has pretty much been optimised ( Ferraris failed efforts excepted) and will remain near one-design as long as the track,wheelbase, wheels and tyres are fixed by the rules.

          1. I think you are vastly underestimating the scope of development in F1. Every year we see new developments on the Suspension. And yes, Red bull have lead the way, so naturally others have followed. But that doesn’t mean the rules are too restrictive, it just means Red Bull have found the best way of doing it.

            In Aero, with the high noses, Red Bull leads the way in that as well, Does that mean Aero concerning the nose is too restrictive as well?

            1. Drop Valencia!
              29th June 2012, 5:39

              But Mike, it is aero benefits in the suspension design, the suspension of the ’92 Williams was far superiour in handling, the only developments worth noting are minor, damper development and the mass damper… the suspension developments you are lauding by Red Bull are aero developments!

            2. Thank you @ dropvalencia, the gearbox developments Mike mentions are also all about “compactness” so as to fit into an aerodynamic rear end. I hadn’t thought it necessary to spell these things out, in fact if I had my point might have been buried in a long and rambling post, a bit like this one.

    11. Didn’t we actually have grid guys in Valencia at least for its first GP?

      1. HewisLamilton
        29th June 2012, 14:53

        Yes, but only one grid guy for Piquet Jr. :)

    12. Sometimes my girlfriend will watch the start of a race with me and will always sit there pointing out which grid girl is the most attractive, and she says she has no problem with them in that position. They’ve chosen to take part to use their looks as a promotional tool, a) because it’s self promotion and b) because they’re being paid to.
      I think if you ask the grid-girls they wouldn’t have a problem with it at all, I’m sure they’re lavishing in the attention, both from the grid and from the tv audience.
      Plus, my girlfriend is a very intelligent and educated young woman, definitely no air-head and she even pointed out some of the grid-girl’s costumes aren’t even that revealing: Obviously at places like Abu-Dhabi and Bahrain but also even races like Melbourne among others were their attire is more sophisticated than a micro cut of spandex!

      1. P.s she also stated “grid-guys” would look a little weird, but I think it’s because she’s more interested in the attractive drivers – her favourite being Webber! Thought I’d share another female perspective :)

      2. I doubt anybody feels sorry for the girls per se, the issue here is the message it’s sending out to viewers and the sexist idea of having them there in the first place.

        1. Great Idea, bring back eunuchs.

          1. Eh…what?

      3. Yeah, it’s great that those woman are making money being eye can… .Wait… isn’t that the moral problem in the first place?

        1. That’s true, but my guess is the moral objection is only a view shared by a portion of the viewers. I have friends who have done promo work for the Gold Coast Indy (granted, much more scantily-clad than girls in Formula One), and the most support they received was from other woman at the event and passers-by who said they were “braver” than they were and the issues of them being treated as “sexual objects” would come from drunk, rowdy hoodlums who couldn’t handle their XXXX (a horrible Australian beer for anyone wondering..).
          So from where I see it and from what I gather, the only moral objection seems to come from those who view it from afar, not from within the industry who see satisfaction most of the girls get from doing it. In the end its more promotion now anyway. The girls usually wear a brand or a logo, so I think it’s more a case of advertisement rather than women being subjectified. Look at advertising on tv and billboards and the Internet etc etc etc. The issue with grid girls in F1 is minuscule compared with issues of sexual connotations and subjectivity in other forms of sport and mainstream advertising.

        2. How is that a moral problem? I genuinely don’t understand why paying someone for looking pretty is any worse than paying someone for being smart or having some athleticism.

    13. We can’t get rid of the grid girls in Hungary. :)

      1. Or in Spain

    14. Good COTD @mazdachris It strikes me being as incredibly outdated and totally unnecessary. It adds nothing to the sport and no one would miss that element if it disappeared. Of course, it’s tradition, but for such a forward-thinking sport you would think this sort of thing would be history by now. At least the F1 grid girls are respectfully dressed, which can’t be said for all categories of motorsport.

      Regarding the Scarbs article, pertaining to some overheating issue is pretty much what I expected. It just made sense. Interesting article though, I learned something new! While it is right that quality tests are conducted, I don’t expect overheating will be a major issue for the next few races.

      Makes me wonder though, Vettel got out of the car and he was fuming. Did the team not tell him about the problem while it was ongoing? I know he would be seriously annoyed regardless but at least he would have had a few laps in the car to come to terms with it…

      1. What I find odd is that they say the life of the alternator was prolonged during the SC period and when they got up to speed again it quickly worsened. I can understand that, when not going at full speed, the alternator would not need to work as hard during a SC period as it normally would but during a SC period there’s also a lot less cooling air. We’ve seen failures in the past because of insufficient cooling during SC periods or shortly after (lengthy) pitstops. I assumed the SC period would have caused the overheating rather than prolonged the life of the alternator.

        1. @f1fannl Probably correct regarding the insufficient heating for the alternator, I was trying to think what it could be myself.

          The irony of the Safety Car!

        2. If I understood it right @f1fannl and @andrewtanner, what creates the heat is both the engine+exhausts and the friction inside the alternator itself. So when the cars run at a slower speed, with lower revs, less heat is generated in the alternator itself and from the engine/exhausts.

          1. When kinetic energy (rotation) is converted to electric energy some thermal energy is a by-product as it is when electric energy is converted to kinetic energy your electric motor gets warm or hot if loaded up.

    15. Best thing to so with the “grid girl” position is to auction each spot to a fan. I’d be happy to stand there with a grid sign and have the money go to a charity in the country where the race is held. I would give my right arm to have my kids holding grid signs – better an wasting the dosh on paddock passes or something else that goes into Bernies pocket. I’d also auction the job of pressing the race start lights. Sure, it wouldnt be cheap for the auction winner but what an experience!

      1. That is a very good idea, but impossible to achive. Most of the rich peaople are not atractive enough for TV :D

    16. Its funny how the debate on the moral dilemma around grid girls is formed here. Many a guy talking about how its not right, views from women, that they don’t mind seeing a nice body and good on these girls to have the courage to get there. Interesting thoughts on grid guys as well.
      When one thinks about it this shows how the F1 crowd in general (or maybe just the drop in the ocean of F1 fans discussing on F1Fanatic?) are pretty open minded a group.

      For me the best solution would be to have a look not at how this is a problem, but how to better use the opportunities to make F1 better by not just putting some nice looking girls there, but make more of the whole grid thing.
      Either getting fans in with a competition (I bet that would be a HUGE success with fans if they could be there), or using it to better promote the culture of the place we are actually visiting, or reward the people who put in their effort to keep the track clean and operating, making it more worthwhile for the promoters and adding more variation would be lovely.

      1. Extremely well put, sir. That’s pretty much exactly how I feel. Even if you dont feel like it’s a problem, you have to admit that the whole grid person concept has potential to be so much more awesome than it is.

    17. Interesting that the safety car appeared to actually helped to cool Vettel’s alternator; I was one of the people who immediately assumed it was a problem which was a consequence of the safety car (and Vergne’s ridiculous manoeuvre). Still, I am firmly of the opinion that it was Renault that cost Red Bull an emphatic win which could prove to be very costly for Vettel’s title hopes.

      1. @vettel1 But you could say, it was Renault that won them the title last year, with the low fuel consumtion. (They started lighter, as less fuel is needed to the race distance, gained advantage in the first 1-2 stints, remember taht with 10-20 laps to go Button was usually gaining on Vettel, but could rarely catch up, as the advantage was too big by that time.)
        The other thing is these are the same powerplants as last year, so it was the teams own fault not to make it last.

        1. @bag0 – the alternator is new for this season, and it was a brand new engine for the race (so Red Bull can hardly be blamed). I agree with you in the respect that these things happen – nothing will ever have bulletproof reliability – but it was a fault as a result of poor design on Renault’s part which proved costly to both Vettel & Grosjean in loosing them a possible 25 & 15/18 points respectively.

          1. Sorry, you are right, those were new spec and brand new.

    18. Helmut Marko at home is still saying its “everyone against Red Bull” in the paddock (in German – he was at a gig in Graz), poor guy. Bad loser probably summs it up nicely

      1. @BasCB He’s probably over-doing it with that statement but I imagine that they’re alienating themselves by not aligning RBR and STR with the RRA.

        1. that is very likely Andrew.

    19. Wow, COTD!

      I do appreciate that some people enjoy seeing the grid girls, and I am under no illusion as to the reason for their appeal. I’m a man, and the blood in my veins is as red as any. I enjoy looking at girls as much as the next man, and I’m certainly no crusader for political correctness.

      There really are two issues. The first, and most obvious, is that it is sexist and objectifies women. When I watch motorsports with my wife, who is just as big a motorsports fan as I am, she finds it pretty enraging the way that women are portrayed by the sport. Especially when Martin Brundle occasionally condescends to talk to them on the grid, in a rather shameful attempt to make them look stupid and expose the fact they don’t know anything about F1. This doesn’t bother me – I’m sure there are plenty of people (caterers, manual workers, medical staff, etc) who go to races as employees without any interest in motorsports whatsoever. There is no reason why these workers need any interest or knowledge of motorsports to do the job they’re employed to do. The difference is that these others are all employed for practical reasons, while the models on the grid and around the paddock are there for purely aesthetic reasons. It’s a sad reflection on F1 that a significant proportion of women employed in the motorsports industry are employed simply to stand there and look good. It’s not even as if they’re there in a cheap attempt to grab attention towards some promotion or other.

      By contrast, the majority of female F1 fans aren’t watching F1 solely because they fancy the drivers (most I’ve spoken to would struggle to pick out a genuinely attractive driver from the grid) but rather because they enjoy the excitement of watching incredible machines being driven by some of the best drivers in the world. In short, the same reason why men tune in to watch. Which is really the heart of the problem, and the reason why F1 should ditch the whole concept in favour of something more modern, or more inclusive for fans. F1 doesn’t need to degrade itself by relying on a display of sexy people to draw in the crowds; it’s not why people watch, and the sport would be no poorer without it. In fact, it would be an opportunity to demonstrate how forward thinking the sport is. Fans or children would be great. Or as someone suggested on the original thread, men and women in the traditional dress of the host country. Or, y’know, just a fun plastic sign, or an inflatable, arm-flailing tube-man, or a big flag attached to the top of the car. Just anything which gets away from this ridiculous idea that motorsport must rely on a certain level of sexual imagery in order to be popular.

    20. That people are being employed as eye candy at all is something which should be addressed

      Frankly speaking, I don’t see a problem here. Come on, we don’t find ourselves in a monastery. There are whole industries that employ people only because they are good looking and it doesn’t mean that these people have low value or that they are dumb. I know adult movie stars that are highly intelligent people. And here we are talking solely about people standing, looking good and smiling. OK, I would be happy to see some grid boys as well but there is nothing wrong with the concept as such.

      1. It’s interesting that a lot of people have said things along those lines. I don’t think I suggested anywhere that I thought these people were thick. Martin Brundle might get a kick out of trying to make them look thick, but I wouldn’t assume anything either way. I don’t particularly like the idea of using these idealised images of people, because I think they’re potentially slightly harmful, and I don’t think that everything needs to be sexualised.

        We’ve become so used to seeing sexual imagery in pretty much every aspect of our lives that we just accept it. All I’m doing is questioning whether it is necessary, and whether it is positive.

        1. @mazdachris No, of course, you didn’t suggest that, all I wanted to point out was that being a grid girl does not make one a worse (or a better) person. And it’s their own choice to stand there as eye candy instead of trying to follow in Danica Patrick’s footsteps just like Alonso’s choice is to race quick cars even though he is a good looking man that could have become a model as well. What I want to say is that I’ve never perceived the grid girl stuff as a message ‘men race cars, women look sexy and that’s how it always will be’, that would be ridiculous.

          Talking about the sexualisation, I think it’s always been there, now it’s simply taken a different shape than in the past. I was born in the USSR where there was ‘no sex’ (that is, nobody talked about it openly) and I clearly prefer the current trends over the hypocrisy that was then.

          By the way, here is another example of F1’s sexualisation, grid girls don’t need to feel lonely :)

    21. Right, I can’t pretend to have read every comment about grid girls here. But it’s one of the alternative suggestions that I’d like to write about.
      Grid Guys.
      As an openly homosexual man (gay, queer, poof – whatever you like), grid guys would be just as offensive to me. It’s the objectivisation of a human being that gets me down; the expectation that some kind of titilation or desire response can be elicited by the display of an attractive body in a totally irrelevant situation. Sexual response has got nothing to do with racing. Racing has got nothing to do with sexual stimulation.
      Don’t try and create a response from irrelevant stimuli.
      Grid Candy (male or female) is as relevant to a grid of racing cars as a display of beautiful food would be to a football match.
      And anyway, how many Grid Guys would you include with the Girls – 50%? One in ten?

    22. I don’t agree with CoTD. Nobody forces these girls to attend a race, they choose to.
      It’s true their function is pretty much useless, but even then they aren’t naked, although their dresses are short. I don’t see what the problem is.

      1. +1 move on, next topic.

    23. You can tell it’s that dull period after one race and between another when we’re talking about grid girls in such detail.

      The sport is generally watched by men, generally run by men (not through lack of access by women, by choice I’d say) and is competed by men in every race (although of course that is likely to change in the next 10 years). The women that do watch arent really that bothered by the grid girls. When I’ve watched F1 with other women they’ve never really passed comment on the grid girls, other than “she looks cold” or “she’s pretty”. None have been that bothered that there are just girls.

      Secondly, women are less bothered by what they watch on TV than men. i.e.:
      Men would rather see grid girls, but not “grid guys”
      Women generally wouldnt mind either grid girls or “grid guys”, some in fact would rather just grid girls (and not because they’re that way inclined either!).

      I think the one thing you can liken this discussion to is Vegas. Unless you’re going to see the Chipendales, if you were going to see a show of vulgar, wealth, sleeaze and so on, you’d expect to see show girls.

      Anyway, I find it hard to imagine that the grid girls will go away any time soon, and I’m not complaining! Also, dont the ladies have the drivers to marvel over? Perhaps that’s why the grid girls are there for the blokes! =P

      1. @jamesf1, I think you make several questionable assumptions in your comment.

        First of all, the sport is generally watched by men. – If I remember right surveys showed it actually has a significant female following.

        Second, you say women do not run the sport by choice – Something I find hugely unlikely, given that most of our current society is structured like this, but not by choice, at least not from the women involved.

        To me its more about a missed opportunity to do something more with the presentation at the beginning of the race and what image and values F1 as a sport wants to show and how this can help get a wider audience and better returns from fans.

        1. Mountain and mole hills. If woman really felt strongly about this, there would be a louder opposition. If anything, this is empowering woman. Allowing them to be seen on the grid in what is largely a male dominated sport, which yes, I believe is down to choice rather than opportunity. Engineering is generally more appealing to males. It’s not a chauvanistic assumption, just a clear statment. There is a siginificant female presence outside of engineering, such as PR, media, management and catering. They’ve obviously a passsion and a following for the sport.

          I didnt suggest that the female following was small, but it’s quite clear that it is smaller in comparisson to the number of men which watch the sport.

    24. Re: alternators, Rob White is widely reported as saying that [temporary] fixes might include “changing a few settings on acceleration maps so the running is less severe.” I don’t see how this could affect electrical power consumption (all the electronics and electro-mechanical devices would carry out the same functions), so this must be mechanical (perhaps “severity” leads to vibration) but again it’s difficult to correlate this with overheating.

      Does anyone have any insight into why “acceleration maps” — with the obvious potential for negative effects on overall performance — could assist alternator cooling?

      1. @paul-a As Scarbs wrote, the alternators sit under the exhaust system, and on the lower part of the engine, the temporary solution might lower the risk of overheating, by reducing the temperature of the engine and exhaust.

        1. Thanks for replying. I had thought about that, but to make any meaningful change to local temperatures, surely the loss of power would be significant? [They could also open up the airflow to the radiators, but again the loss of aero performance would also be felt.] My best guess is that the “acceleration maps” might allow a power limit (adjust mixture and/or ignition advance?) at low speed where the local airflow around the heatshields would be at its worst, and (again a guess) the driver cannot use full power as full aero downforce is not yet created by the rear wing. But this raises another question: aren’t the ECUs “fixed” by the rules?

          I just hope they can find a solution (manufacturing batch), as otherwise we’re going to have Lotus, Williams, Caterham and Redbull drivers “nursing” EGTs and not performing 100%.

    25. This is the first technical error of Renault Sport F1 in 2012 :

    26. There’s a nice little promotional video by Santander on YouTube about the London GP. I found it very entertaining, at least :D

      1. If we get past the chaos and congestion it would cause, I would love this to happen. However, one thing scares me about this circuit – Admiralty Arch! It’s tight enough for people passing through it normally at 30mph, let alone an F1 driver threading a needle at 180mph!

      2. Thanks for the video.
        @jamesf1, I guess the teams would have to calibrate their simulators down to every inch of the track.

    27. So, an F1 alternator is less than two inches in diameter and two and three quarter inches long (5cm x 7cm)? You’re going to have to show me a picture of one with a ruler for me to believe that because I’m not buying it.

    28. The idea what having grid girls is ok because “no one forces the women to do it” is rather odd.
      I don’t object to them because they are grid girls, but for how it portrays women in the sport… as nothing but window dressing, with nothing to contribute. How is that encouraging women who want to get into motorsport as engineers, designers, mechanics,drivers etc?

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