Ecclestone hails “incredible” Watkins

F1 Fanatic round-up

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In the round-up: Bernie Ecclestone pays tribute to Sid Watkins’s safety work in Formula One.


Top F1 links from the past 24 hours:

Bernie Ecclestone on Professor Sid Watkins (F1)

“What Sid Watkins did in the way of safety in Formula One was incredible. He gave his whole life to that cause, to make sure that it could be as safe as it possibly could be. We all owe him a debt of gratitude for his caring and commitment.”

Lewis Hamilton’s future at McLaren could be decided within days (The Guardian)

“The Guardian understands that McLaren’s original offer to the driver represented a little more than two thirds of his current deal, which is thought to be ??15m a year. They have since come up with an incremental tweak, worth about an extra million. But that still leaves the Woking-based team well short of the ??60m that Mercedes are prepared to offer him between 2013-15.”

Pirelli test car hit by alternator issue (Autosport)

“The Renault R30 was running with a 2010-specification alternator, which the engine manufacturer described as ‘similar’ to the one used in the first part of this season.”

F1 Preview: German Specialists Show Off Austin’s Racetrack (YouTube)

Comment of the day

Antonio Nartea (@tony031r) on Sauber’s chances of getting a win before the end of this year:

I wouldn?t be surprised if Sauber win a race this year but I doubt it?s gonna be in Singapore.

Perez would have to put in a superhuman effort to do so and slingshot past the McLarens who are gonna be mighty fast here, Ferrari who always performed well and Red Bull who are sort of on their turf, on the twisty, technical street circuit.

And I say Perez because Kobayashi has a dreadful history on this particular track and I don?t think he?ll improve that much this year. I?d rate Perez for a classification somewhere in the middle of the point scoring pack and Kobayashi someplace at the end of it. But that?s it.
Antonio Nartea (@tony031r)

From the forum

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On this day in F1

With the 2002 drives’ championship having been decided four races earlier, Michael Schumacher left team mate Rubens Barrichello to take an untroubled win at Monza ten years ago today.

The Williams drivers led a BMW-powered one-two in the early stages until Ralf Schumacher dropped out with engine failure. Juan Pablo Montoya was overwhelmed by the Ferraris and he too retired.

At the finishing line Ferrari’s closest rival, Eddie Irvine’s Jaguar, was over 52 seconds in arrears.

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  • 49 comments on “Ecclestone hails “incredible” Watkins”

    1. on most subjects, i find the majority of bernie’s quotes to be quite ‘bland’ – this one, however, is not so.

    2. shame i can’t read more than 50 autosport articles a month now. :(

    3. davidnotcoulthard
      15th September 2012, 1:15

      Another year, another Tilkedrome…

      But then, Austin looks pretty good to me, as a replacement of what is perhaps the best Tilkedrome right now: Turkey.

      It would’ve been good if we can have the 2 best Tilkedromes in one season, but Turkey’s been dropped…ah well.

    4. I wonder, if Hamilton does proceed to join Mercedes-Benz, will it mean a better chance of Mercedes remaining in Formula One? If the move actually seals the deal with the Stuttgart bigwigs, he would be doing the whole of Formula One a massive favor.

      1. Yes, which is why Bernie is pushing Lewis in that direction.

      2. if Hamilton does proceed to join Mercedes-Benz, will it mean a better chance of Mercedes remaining in Formula One?

        It’s believed that Mercedes is offering a three-deal, from 2013 to 2015. There is no way Hamilton would commit to that if he felt that there was a chance Mercedes would withdraw before then.

        Mercedes signing Hamilton would be a statement of their intentions to stay, rather than being presented as a case for them to stay.

    5. Eddie might have been 52 seconds behind, but think of it as a Force India or perhaps a Torro Rosso getting a podium today! Even more to the point of what a great drive Eddie had that day, the crowd were chanting ‘Eddie, Eddie, Eddie’ He even thought about announcing his retirement then but didn’t. He came close to returning to Jordan the next year but in the end it was his last season. If he has one regret, it’s probably not announcing his retirement on that day on a high, despite a Ferrari one-two, the crowd were chanting Eddie!

      1. Ervine was an underrated driver and never really got the respect he deserved probably because it looked to the outside world like he wasn’t driven enough or didn’t take things seriously enough because of his personality.

        He also got the podium at Monaco in that Jaguar which was a massive achievement and thrashed team mates Herbert and De la Rosa.

      2. davidnotcoulthard
        15th September 2012, 15:14

        “What’s so special about getting a RBR on a podium?”

        1. Irvine did nearly beat Hakkinen in give or take equal equipment in 1999. He was also on par with Schumacher that season before Schumi had his accident at Silverstone (both men had 32 points, Mika had 40). Irvine was a genuinely good driver.

    6. Most of us would be able to get by with GBP. 10 million per year ($15+m.) and still be able to put a bit aside for the future so what is Lewis thinking ?
      Well, he is probably thinking that the extra 10 mil. pounds Mercedes is offering might come in handy one day, also he is probably wondering how he would feel about foregoing that to stay at McLaren if McLaren were off the pace and screwing up pit-stops and strategy like they have been recently.
      There is no disloyalty in refusing a paycut or for that matter in accepting a better offer.” A bird in the hand is worth 2 in the bush” so take the money and run Lewis.

      1. The more money you have the greater your needs become.

      2. I’m no Lewis fan, but I actually understand his thinking. When you have wealth of that kind, it’s not a question of what you need, since no rational person needs to earn 20 million pounds per annum instead of 10 million. Having observed a lot of wealthy people up close in my profession (as a lawyer) I can tell you that it’s all about status and sense of self worth, not net worth. I have no doubt that in Hamilton’s mind, it’s a case of “Why should I earn half what Alonso earns, I am not half the driver he is. I am the best and my salary should reflect that”.

        1. “Why should I earn half what Alonso earns, I am not half the driver he is. I am the best and my salary should reflect that”

          More to the point, why should I earn two-thirds of what Button earns?

          1. Because his speed is offset by his demeanour. Sure, he’s fast, but Hamilton has proven to be a liability in the past – Tweeting his telemetry read-out, getting distracted by his personal problems and refusing to acknowledge them, lying to the stewards and half a dozen other incidents of bizarre behaviour which demonstrate that despite his obvious natural talent, Lewis Hamilton is really rather immature at times.

            1. McLaren was itself as much to blame in the lying to stewards situation, as a team member lead him on, so that isn’t a good example. I also thought he made it very clear that personal problems were the issue last year, and openly acknowledged that. And those reasons are not enough to justify being paid 2/3 the amount of a driver who he is beating in the standings for the 2nd year out of three.

            2. Lying to do stewards yes lol. Guess what? He was caught red handed, penalised, and had to apologise for it in public.

              Now what about Fernando “I didn’t know” Alonso ? He was one of protagonists in the race fixing scandal “crashgate” , yet he got away scot free. He still earns the most among F1 drivers. I hope this gives you a perspective about the parallels between work ethic and contract value regarding F1 drivers.

              In light of all said, judge Lewis by his on track prowess not by pointless blabber.

      3. I don’t like Lewis, even though I haven’t met him, to me he is seems artificial, nonetheless i don’t think that the money is what separates him from signing again with Mclaren or signing to what is widely perceived only deep pockets, Mercedes. I think he has understood that he is the most coveted asset in F1 and simply he is not being treated as he deserves the team seems to focused in Button, apart from his team everyone trusts on his skill and so does he, Ross Brawn alone should be enough to lure Hamilton to Mercedes, everyone entrusts Brawn as well, even the great Schumacher is not enough to keep Hamilton out, actually he may be the reason why he’ll retire just like in the past. Mercedes is throwing their last hand, i surely didnt expect that, but if that is their idea, i do trust in them because as we have seen in 2012 a great trio surpasses each individual, and with the best driver the best director and the best team, i’m sure they’ll deliver the best car for the future.

        1. Most coveted asset in f1 in think not..lewis problem that at the moment is that f1 is spoiled with 5 or 6 very strong top class drivers so the demand for him isn’t as high as it normally would be. Not that any team wouldn’t snap him up, its just that its a teams market these days and not a drivers market. Secondly mercedese is more than just deep pockets, it would be a mistake to write them of based on past and present form. With the changes and new personal employed, coupled by the fact they they are a works team i reckon they may be a force to be reckoned with (not to mention they do have deeper pockets than McLaren ;) )

    7. Hamilton to Merc would possibly mean all world champions (if Schu retires) having their own teams in effect as all being number 1 drivers. Who can help build the best team Schumacher style?

    8. I doubt Hamilton’s decision will have much to do with the money per se. I’m trying to imagine myself in his position. Would I be happy to take a pay cut from McLaren, even if it still meant I’d be wealthy beyond what most people can imagine? No. I think I’d find it pretty insulting. Ron Dennis might as well just come right out and say “You need us more than we need you.”

      I think I’m going to stay skeptical about this until the day an announcement is made one way or the other, because it’s still hard for me to imagine Hamilton not wanting to be in the fastest car above all else. If he does go to Mercedes, though, I just can’t see greed being part of the decision.

      1. If he does go to Mercedes, though, I just can’t see greed being part of the decision.

        Well, you never know until you yourself are faced with the situation. Who knows what Hamilton wants. My understanding is that he has been unhappy about trophies and various contractual obligations. However, if I was Hamilton I’d go Mercedes. Try something different, try something new. Take a chance. What’s there to be afraid of! If Mercedes have that kind of money to throw around for the driver, then surely in the near future they will have money to throw for a new engineer if the current one(s) don’t work.

    9. Austin seems like Barcelona, but with a reduce straight line

    10. I wouldn’t be surprised if Sauber win a race this year but I doubt it’s gonna be in Singapore.

      If not Singapore, where then?

      Personally, I think their best chances would be in India and South Korea. Both are circuits that really allow the teams to set their cars up to play to their strengths.

    11. RIP Prof Sid Watkins a great man with incredible legacy to F1

    12. I know it’s cool to bag all things associated with Tilke, but I for one am very excited about COTA. I think it looks like a great track, and can’t wait for the Grand Prix in November. Turn 1 at the start will be interesting!

      1. It’s looking really good. I was concerned the “arena” section after the back straight might be a bit mickey-mouse, like the dreaded chicane at Indianapolis, but it looks a bit more open than that.

        Great pass down the straight in the video, by the way – he sends the armco truck to the right, then goes left…

        1. Yeah, I don’t know about that arena section either. I still have my doubts, but I guess we have to wait and see what it will be like in the race.

    13. I doubt very much the situation between Lewis & McLaren is just about the dollar amount: there seems to be a lot of disagreement on principle… especially if there’s any truth to the rumor that they were offering him less than Jenson gets. In a season where he’s thrashed JB in qualifying (not to mention the fact that most people will agree that Lewis would at least be much closer to Alonso on points were it not down to operational errors by team McLaren) I’m not surprised he hasn’t re-signed just yet… if that is indeed the actual case. There have been a lot of comments labeling him as greedy & all manner of other things, but this is the man’s livelihood after all. How many of you would take a pay cut? Or refuse to explore a potentially lucrative & otherwise beneficial job opportunity? I’m saving full judgement until the ink dries on the contract & more details emerge.

    14. Austin looks as dull as dishwater, another Tilke masterpiece …yawn .

      1. Only the crowds can save them, that Texan fella promised a full house that has to save the weekend. I agree the track is another track that tries to blend anything just to end up like everything.

      2. Funny, I didn’t think it looked dull at all, except for the surroundings. Lots of sweeping turns and elevation changes- looks great to me!

    15. @KeithCollantine I’ve just noticed some interesting points stats from the last two races, which are as follows: BUT and HAM (25, 1 win), RAI (25, 1 podium), MAS 22, VET and PER (18, 1 podium), ALO (15, 1 podium), MSC 14, HUL 12, WEB 8, ROS 6, DIR 5, VER 4, KOB and RIC 2, SEN 1. No one has scored more than 25 points, and 16 of the 18 points scorers scored in these two races.

    16. Also it’s 11 years since Alex Zanardi’s massive accident – would be good to put into perspective just how big his Paralympic achievements are.

    17. Anyone else wonder if the 60million Merc want to pay Hamilton might be better spent trying to move themselves up the grid? Since Mercedes bought into Brawn, the team has been a bit “meh” in its performances with a single win at China, and its not like they consistantly are on the podium.

      Im not so sure this is a good move for either parties, Lewis could end up in a car far worse then McLaren would give him (2009 excluded) and struggle to win another title before he’s 30. Mercedes might have to endure a Hamilton thats spitting his dummy out and tweeting stuff about the car when things dont go well.

      Thinking about it, do McLaren even want Lewis to stay? Is that why the offer is so low. Excellent driver he might be, but he comes with a lot of emotional baggage and at times, is a real headache for them. I am a Hamilton fan, but I find myself being more then a little fed up with him sometimes.

        1. The 2 year contract negotiations I read before from Bild and make sense but the no1 status is beyond ridiculous and comes from some publication I never heard of.

          Schumacher or Rosberg is going to accept no2 status to Hamilton who has struggled to get the edge on his own McLaren team mate this last 2 years!!

    18. If Mclaren are offering Ham 2thirds Button then He can only but walk or face the massa conumdrom, to be in a team and consistently lead yet get a worse contract is a sign that the team are thinking elsewhere.
      Hamilton should go to Mercedes, Mclaren dont want him an Ross Brawn would love Him in the team………….
      …..I happened to think do you think Hams tweets of tele was He`s way of saying `Get stuffed`to His old team?

      1. vodafone wernt slashing the buget when button signed the contract.

        1. and they have to pay for there own engines now thers about 20 mil aswell

    19. I am sorry to spoil the silly season for you guys but this will be the driver lineups next year…
      Red Bull – Vettel, Webber
      McLaren – Button, Hamilton (anything that starts with “Eddie Jordan believes…” is wrong)
      Ferrari – Alonso, Perez (Montezemelo likes making his smokescreens)
      Mercedes – Rosberg, Schumacher (why sack a man that wants to race and is driving brilliantly)
      Lotus – Raikkonen, Grosjean
      Williams – Bottas, Senna (surely Williams has realized that Maldonado is COSTING them money)
      Sauber – Kobayashi, Kovalainen (gotta be a possibility)
      Force India – Di Resta, Hulkenburg (with no seats higher up the grid neither of these future stars need to move)
      Toro Rosso – Vergne, Valseechi (Ricciardo hasn’t cut the mustard for me)
      Caterham – Petrov, Razia
      Marussia – Glock, Pic
      HRT – De La Rosa, Maldonado (they need the cash)

      1. Williams to chose Senna over Moneydonado? Be serious dude… Pastor brings more cash and points (which later convert into cash) than Senna and he gave the team their first win since 2004 for God’s sake. It would be most stupid from them to do so.
        And then – Maldonado in a HRT? Why? Caterham wouldn’t need his sponsorship?

        1. Yeah, I suppose I was just being hopeful on Maldonado, but I think the rest looks about spot on.

    20. i would love to see a non championship round anually somwere the sid wtkins tribute race

      1. sorry for the spelling blame stella

      2. A non-championship round would be very unlikely. But a karting race with all the current grid competing would be very interesting. All drivers with the same equipment – a true test of who’s the fastest.

        1. they used to have them non championship rounds that is

    21. Agree with the COTD. Kobayashi had a moment last year over ‘that’ chicane. I’m not one to usually complain but I’m a little disappointed in Hamilton putting so much apparent emphasis on his salary. If we weren’t due new engines in a couple of years then I would be even more disappointed with him but if he’s aligning himself with a manufacturer of engines for the right reasons then that’s much more admirable.

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