2018 Formula 1


I’ve been following F1 quite closely since the late 70s due to AJ’s involvement with Williams and subsequent increased coverage in Oz. As a consequence I’ve held a soft spot for Williams. I was lucky enough to meet Sir Frank both pre and post accident. I could have even been considered a Fanboi over the years.
It saddens me deeply to see the fall from leader of the pack thru best of the rest to also ran. I see nothing that suggests that they are heading in any direction other than out the back door. This makes me want to weep.

On a brighter note, it was a very good race to watch. I suspect, however, that the season will produce more processions than excitement.


I was only referring to the Paddy Lowe, and the general “oooh, now they’ll be fine” media mood - hence the tongue in cheek


Very mature response from Max given he was playing to his “home” audience. This pleases me…


Apologies for missing that bit! Been very busy at work and so have been scan reading the thread.


Here’s an excellent (IMHO) summary by Dieter Rencken of Liberty’s proposals for F1


He really does write very well, Dieter. A succinct nailing of the head right here:

"A big(ger) issue is the performance gap between, say, Ferrari and engine customer Sauber: Both have the same power; yet one wins, the other places last.

The reason is simple: Under the current regulations, Ferrari spends what is required to win, and if in the process the team discards ten front wing designs at a cost of £100 000 each in pursuit of the perfect wing, so be it, whereas budget teams need to get it right first time."


It puzzles me somewhat that the big teams continue to ignore F1’s gradual decline in popularity and relevance for the sake of their own short-term interests. I think Liberty need to front this out and go ahead - if the big 2 or 3 go, well it generates huge publicity for the sport - publicity that emphasises Liberty’s attempt to make the sport more relevant and inclusive, which can hardly be a bad thing; plus opens up the field to new participants.


Over the last 40 years, scare stories about “break-away” series’ have always worried me. I am now of the mind that it may actually improve the sport. I care less now if Ferrari leave. F1 will still exist. In a different form maybe, but it will continue.

The imbalance cannot continue. If you want great racing, there needs to be more cars competing at the front.
Call their bluff. There are good teams further down the grid who will take up the cudgels.


I can’t blame the big teams for their short term interest - they have a constituency of one; their shareholders. Equally, the smaller teams are no better, just poorer: hence all of them having taken Bernie’s bonuses & bungs along the way, despite the obvious divide and rule consequences.

While there are very good philosophical and practical reasons the sport needs to attract auto giants, Liberty’s framing of the rules should (IMHO) consult but not heed the teams.

I am surely naive but I suspect that once you remove the teams from the decision making, most issues - costs / revenues / governance - can fix themselves (regulations = employ Frank to sort it, natch)

The x factor of course is engines (manufacturers). Can’t go racing without them. That’ll be the real battleground for the big teams.


Back when I was first interested in F1 it was a real niche sport. It wasn’t on tv at all, apart from the British GP if there was a front running British driver and maybe Monaco some years.
I don’t recall a year when there were a lot of teams up front, usually only two and often only one obviously faster than everybody else. A non obvious race winner was usually down to the much, less reliable cars when we worked to a budget almost 1000x smaller than now. Most years there is one car a fair bit quicker than the others, sometimes massively so, it was ever thus.
Is F1 in decline or is it just re-balancing? When I started with Hesketh in 1976 we were 18 people and the race team went to the airport in 2 cars, there were 8 of us. When I joined Williams at the end of 1978 we were 23 people. There was zero job security.
What Bernie did was to build up the show into a sport with a tv audience second only to the Olympics and World Cup footie. There was job security and whilst I had expected to get a proper job once I had bigger commitments it ended up being an enjoyable job for life.
Personally I am a big fan of Bernie. Certainly once the venture capitalists bought it they raped it, and Bernie did his bosses bidding. I think everybody thinks it went too far, I certainly do.
I hope Liberty Media improve it. Ross will study things in great detail but it may well take a long time.
I thought Bahrain was a nail biting race, but I am studying the timing data and see a lot of things which aren’t mentioned on tv so maybe it is more boring for others.
Anyway the number of UK fans of F1 grew from around 200,000 to 7 million under Bernie’s stewardship, it may well be dwindling now but for me that is because it isn’t on BBC any more :slight_smile:
I have no interest whatever in television of the 3 practice sessions and the over-analysis of what is going on is unenlightening IMO.
A good tv coverage of the qually and race with a good commentator and somebody knowledgeable studying the timing to give a heads up would be much better for me. I find Channel 4 coverage better than Sky overall.


Great stuff. It’s indeed easy for those of us on the outside to miss how very much has changed.

Personally the whole shebang could be rebooted to any extent necessary, if we lose a couple of engine makers, so what? Others will step-in. I’m not even sure that engine tech needs to appear relevant to road cars - we have Formula E for that, and any notional commonality with road engines is nonsense anyway.

Perhaps F1’s future might even lie in being the last bastion of the dinosaur-burning ICE…? :wink:


I have always argued that associating F1 with road cars is technically false anyway, though it may hep motor manufactures marketing. Nobody justifies football by pointing out the development of better clothing fabrics developed there, or improver footwear stitching, it is a sport plain and simple and I have always seen F1 the same way.
There is pretty well no desirable parameter common to both road and racing cars.


The whole technology trickle down to road cars is bollocks! (Ok, some stuff, but from the norm). It’s always annoyed me that people perpetuate the myth.


KERS? Has my Toyota Auris Hybrid salesman been fibbing?


My Alfa 156 had a sodding great big spoiler on the boot, that was deffo F1 inspired. Probably.

Or ripped off from a 1970 Plymouth Superbird…



I think you’ll find it’s nothing like the F1 system. Salesmen fibbing? Did their lips move?


Hmmm, his lips did indeed move so you have a point.

But there is a screen that shows what is going on. If I break, the batteries are charged. If I decelerate the batteries are charged. If I get within a second of the car in front and put my foot down…

OK, another point well made.


Toyota had hybrid before F1


There seems to be a reasoned argument that a tyre war should be introduced. Michelin has said that they would get involved IF they could supply (Le Mans stylee) low profile tyres.

If you consider a “road relevant” piece of tech which the casual viewer can relate to, it has some presence. If your road car needs better handling or better fuel economy, one of the options would be larger alloy wheels and lower profile/rated tyres.

I know there is considerable resistance from the teams due to accumulated data. But surely this is an opportunity to “shake things up”. Obviously, a strong hand is needed (step up Liberty), but the public would be able to relate to the fuel saving benefits easier than an h-MUK or Mhyr or kHTA or any other bollocks.

The benefits ?
Everybody gets set back to “ground zero” as far as aero from the tyre influence is concerned.
Combined with the changes to Aero that Brawn wants to implement it could cause a shake up.
Pirelli and Michelin pay the costs for this war. The teams can do deals. Yes, there will be bias but it’s how well you can make a deal. As we have seen previously.
Tyres relate directly to downforce. If Brawn can get through reductions aero, life gets tricky for all teams.
Yes, the big teams will conquer any difficulties faster but it will take time. So regs need to be fluid.
There’s obviously other issues I have missed (I have had a couple of bottles of wine), but this MUST be an avenue worth pursuing.


Wow, Oz, it’s not often I compltely disagree with you. Are you sure it wasn’t the cooking sherry you were at?

IMHO, the FIA doesn’t want more suppliers as it increases competition which inevitably increases grip = higher cornering speeds (which they’re trying hard to reduce)

It would cost teams more (2 wouldn’t care but the rest would), and probably reduces Libertys income too.

I don’t persoanlly have happy memories of the last ‘war’, nor am I a fan of the current cheese tyres, spitting their bloody marbles all over the shop and buggering everything off the racing line (not that Ricciardo cares, of course.)

Rock hard control Avon’s, please. I’d be prepared to accept a soft and a hard compound, just. Anything but four twatting variety’s of soft compounds


Quite the race this afternoon. An afternoon for grown ups, both on the pit wall and in the cockpit.

Good decision making from Red Bull made to look genius-like cos of the insanity of nobody else taking the plunge, it was hardly a unique / untried situation, I don’t understand for the life of me why more teams didn’t go for it

Great drive from Ricciardo, much much less so his team mate. Back to school