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PSk's views on the Melboring GP ...

Discussion in 'F1' started by PSk, Mar 7, 2004.

  1. PSk

    PSk F1 World Champ

    Nov 20, 2002
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    Pete
    ... well as some of you will know I went to the Saturday practice sessions and the Sunday race day. I took a couple of rolls of photos ... but they are being developed as I write this, and thus will scan them asap.

    Saturday:

    There was a lot of F1 track time on Saturday with a free practice followed by 2 flying lap sessions.

    It was very obvious that the Ferraris had the upper hand, as very easily they set the pace with way less laps than the other teams. He is how I felt the teams faired:

    Williams - Not as good as their pre-season testing times suggested. The cars looked very untidy under hard braking into turn 1.
    McLaren - Hopelessly off pace, and the cars were fragile. The drivers did not appear to want to run their cars at all, and every time they were checked by scrutineering, the team pushed the cars all the way along the pit lane back to their garage. EVERY other team, just fired up and drove along.
    BAR - Fantastic, they were flying and have made major improvements, if they can keep this up through out the season they will REPLACE McLaren as one of the top 4. Also Sato was good (again), and the Honda engine just screamed.
    Renault - Very sweet sounding motor, and good pace but not Ferrari type pace. Trulli again proved that he is wasting a good car ... and got blown away by Alonso.
    Sauber - Useless!, and cars sounded like crap!
    Jaguar - Webber put on a great show and held good race pace, and definitely the fastest Cosworth engined cars. Cosworth engines did not sound like they were working anywhere hard enough all weekend, and thus I suspect that they are holding all their teams back.
    Toyota - Pathetic, cars were so far off the pace that it was embarrassing to watch.
    Jordan - Weak as usual.
    Minardi - Actually battled with the Jordans in the race (I think) and thus I think we might have atleast one reasonable driver in the making.

    We did a half walking lap of the track to watch some corner action and MS through turn 7 was just amazing ... visibly faster than the others. He actually went through sideways and left black lines on the track ... awesome! :D

    Race:

    I did not watch a race, I watched Ferrari absolutely embarrass the rest of the grid. It was a joke, and the F2004 is a beauty, another great car like the F2002 ... well done Ferrari.

    Montoya was again hopeless with a pathetic attempt at starting the race and first corner. Typical South American lack of control of the brain cell. He did charge up the field and pass quite a few ... but he has not learnt how to be a F1 driver YET! He and Da Matta are making it hard for drivers to come from the American race series (CART or IRL) to F1, as they are not demonstrating any skill at all. Thus if I was a team manager I would now rate CART and IRL as equivalent to European Formula Ford, and thus would not consider the drivers until they did F3 and then F3000.

    Williams, off pace, and not able to make an impression on the Ferraris at all. Left to battle with Trulli in a Renault, while a real driver (Alonso) demonstrated how good the 04 Renault is ... but not good enough to theaten Ferrari.

    McLaren race pace was well off, but we think that was because they were going to 1 stop. This ofcourse is a strategy a team uses when they KNOW their race pace is hopeless. In the end Kimi proved what we all thought and that is the Mercedes engine is STILL a time bomb. McLaren need to do some serious work to be taken seriously this year.

    Jaguar, pleased to see Webber maintain pace with the Williams ... but the Cosworth engine let him down. The official word is gearbox, but the engine went off right in front of us, so I claim BS ;). Klien was impressive for the first race ... not MS impressive but good none the less.

    In the end only 2 Cosworth engines finished the race ... and they appear to be way down on power and ALSO fragile. Amazing how a company that dominated F1 a few years ago, cannot make a competitive v10 engine.

    In conclusion, unless Williams and Renault make huge steps forward (and we get much hotter races to suit the Michelins) this season is already over ... and we are endanger of the rule makers panicing :(

    I will post some photos asap.

    Pete
     
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  3. Boxer12

    Boxer12 Formula 3

    Jun 1, 2003
    1,672
    Interesting observations. Look forward to the pics. There is a suggestion (by MS) that the F2004 is a very delicately balanced aero package, so it will be interesting to see how she does in the wind and the rain on a tight circuit. I wouldn't right off the rest of the field just yet.
     
  4. PSk

    PSk F1 World Champ

    Nov 20, 2002
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    Pete
    Yes the other big teams know how to play the game. My father who is a huge McLaren fan was very down ;) ... poor chap, and as they appear to have very weak engines a difficult thing to continue the season with.

    I think Williams will be Ferraris only challenge, as while the Renault and BARs were good, I think Williams know how to develop and race better through out the season.

    Pete
     
  5. PSk

    PSk F1 World Champ

    Nov 20, 2002
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    Pete
    Did you guys also notice that Ferrari raced with the little wings behind their airbox inlets ...

    Pete
     
  6. beast

    beast F1 Veteran

    May 31, 2003
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    Rob Guess

    i did notice them i figured that we would have only saw them in action at Monaco... Oh well that is the radical Aero changes that they talked about!! :D
     
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  8. Mitch Alsup

    Mitch Alsup F1 Veteran

    Nov 4, 2003
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  9. PSk

    PSk F1 World Champ

    Nov 20, 2002
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    Pete
    Yes I agree that the F2002 was an awesome car and the F2003 was only a small step forward (if forward at all?). The F2004 seems to be another giant leap forward and it is just a rocket, even RB is fast in it.

    If qualifying was the old format we definitely would have seen a low 1m23s lap!!!!

    2 things to consider/ponder about:

    1. Why are the Ferraris so fast?, has Bridgestone found something?, or are Ferrari somehow cheating?, or like you say they have found something in testing that is very clever?, OR are the other teams WASTING their time with the twin keel nose, etc.? Have Ferrari proved that it does not work in simulation by some method that the others haven't thought of, and this is why they are steering clear of it ... ie, has Sauber told Ferrari something they learnt about it?

    Williams and McLaren, the main competitors, both now have fancy twin keel noses and they are both not quite firing on all performance levels ... is this supposedly brilliant concept a white elephant?. Note how the Saubers do not utilise this design idea any more, and they were one of the very first.

    2. How come Alonso was so fast off the line?. They are not supposed to have any launch control anymore. Has Renault found another way around the rules like they did when they tapped into the start line light sequence? ... sneaky buggers.

    Pete
     
  10. Ashman

    Ashman Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Steve Matchett on Speed Channel here in the US said that Renault has devised a system where they estimate the amount of clutch release that will provide optimum grip on takeoff, set it at that level and then wait for the lights to go out. Not technically launch control because it doesn't actively do anything, it is just a last minute pre-setting.

    Clever,

    John
     
  11. nwocorp

    nwocorp Formula Junior

    Nov 1, 2003
    493
    australia
    im pretty sure ch10 said that the ferrari is rumured to be 100kg under weight where the other top teams are around 70 that extra 30kg of ballest manourverbility would no doubt have a huge impact
    - then again i was watching tv for 3 days straight so i could of imagined it
     
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  13. tatcat

    tatcat F1 Veteran
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    the most horrifying thing is the one engine rule. it's like staring down a gunbarrel all weekend. it seems this is the x factor that hangs over the proceedings. when you think of all the tiny o rings and spinny things that could fly off. i don't know how they can sleep. it's gonna be a long season.
     
  14. ross

    ross Three Time F1 World Champ
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    i had similar impressions of the weekend.
    seems to me frank williams has a problem. he has the second best car out there and a good reliable engine, but 2 drivers that don't want to be there and won't be there next year. this makes for a difficult dynamic within the team and will not result in success. (frank shud have dumped monotya as soon as he signed macca and taken villeneuve for 'free' imho).

    macca is no where. that engine will not allow them to make any headway till europe.

    renault is great, as long as its in the hands of alonso (a star that ferrari shud sign asap).

    sauber will get their act together soon, and probably do well.

    the rest looked lost and only there to make up the numbers....

    ferrari may not have as good a season as 2002, but it certainly looks like a strong start. and i don't think its due to any mystery. its a combo of bridgestone making headway, a dreamteam working on the car over the last 9mths, and the god-like driving skills and dedication of ms. unfortunately nobody else has that combo, and the season will reflect this.
     
  15. beast

    beast F1 Veteran

    May 31, 2003
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    If any of the rule changes were created to try and limit Ferrari, The one engine rule was not it.

    A couple of things to think about here. Ferrari's V-10 engine has been the most reliable the past 2 seasons. Ferrari did not have a single engine melt down durring a race in 2002 and 2003. In fact the last engine they had a failure in a race was Rubens motor at the USGP in 2001 and it took close to 10 laps before it locked up.

    Martineli has found how to thread the fine line between power and reliability a few years ago. The other engine builders knew of the upconning rule change and look at how many melt downs they had last season. I am sure that most of the teams had the fuel and ignition curves set on the conservative side until they can get into the motors from this race and tear them down to have a better look at them. We may see a few teams bumping up there engine performance at the next race and a few others (Cosworth) perhaps taking a step back.

    In some future races it would not suprise myself to see a team run light, qualify high up then go up to the FIA and say hey we are seeing water in our oil and we need to change the motor, and slap a high revving, high HP unit into the car and start 10 places back.

    JUST MHO.

    Rob
     
  16. Brian C. Stradale

    Brian C. Stradale F1 Rookie
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    Mar 17, 2002
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    If those drivers are angry, I'd think they'd be driving the bejeezus out of the cars in order make themselves look good and Williams look bad as they seem to be close to the front just when the car gives up the ghost.

    It will be interesting to see how the season plays out for Williams.


    And I'd think JPM is probably having regular phone calls to find out what's wrong with Mclaren's cars... and trying to encourage development for next season! It'll be funny when JPM is doing some testing to help out Mclaren in the middle of his final season with Williams. ;)
     
  17. tifosi12

    tifosi12 Four Time F1 World Champ
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    Is it just me or didn't Massa learn a darn thing in his year as Ferrari test driver?

    The guy had a spin and two offs. Compare that to super talent Alonso.

    I hope Ferrari picks up Alonso once MS goes into retirement. Forget Massa. And forget Fisico.
     
  18. tifosi12

    tifosi12 Four Time F1 World Champ
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    WAITING FOR PETE's PICTURES....

    ...warm up that scanner lamp already
     
  19. Mitch Alsup

    Mitch Alsup F1 Veteran

    Nov 4, 2003
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    The 2003GA was also light, but the wheelbase and the shape fo the car under the driver prevented Ferrari from moving the ballast weights far enough forward at several tracks. It appears that this has been fixed.

    Due to advancements in strength of materials and constructions techniques, and decent F1 team can construct an F1 car that is 10% lighter than the rules allow. They make up for the weigth by using Tungsten slabs. These can be moved around to optimize handling to a particular track.
     
  20. mikeman

    mikeman Rookie

    Dec 6, 2003
    10
    Nice to get a straight forward discussion without the hyperboyle of some other sites. Thanks, Pete, for the insight and first hand reporting not available to us. Waiting for the pics.
    Mike
     
  21. tifosi69

    tifosi69 Formula 3

    Dec 23, 2003
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    12, I agree wholeheartedly. I believe Alonso WILL be the next MS, not the automotron Raikonnen or the pansy Juan Taco.
     
  22. tifosi12

    tifosi12 Four Time F1 World Champ
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    Raikkonen will play the plot of the villain. Basically Hakkinen II.

    Taco is too old anyway. His role is to provide noise.
    :)
     
  23. PSk

    PSk F1 World Champ

    Nov 20, 2002
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    Coming ... gee I hope some come out :). Yesterday in the drama from getting off a 12 hour train ride from Melbourne to Sydney, going home for a quick shower, etc. and then straight to work ... I managed to forget my wallet, thus the photos are developed and sitting waiting for me to pick them up today.

    Pete
     
  24. ctkellett

    ctkellett Karting

    Jan 2, 2004
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    Montoya was again hopeless with a pathetic attempt at starting the race and first corner. Typical South American lack of control of the brain cell. He did charge up the field and pass quite a few ... but he has not learnt how to be a F1 driver YET!


    Easy now PSk, I hope this is a joke. I can think of a few South American drivers that are the definition of " control of the brain cell. Senna anybody?
     
  25. PSk

    PSk F1 World Champ

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    Ofcourse it is a joke, not everybody born in a particular country suffers from their country-mens weaknesses ;) ... otherwise I would have married a sheep :D

    But I can think of a few incidents where I did wonder where Senna's brain was ... but I think they were premeditated bad sportmanship, not a red heat of the moment errors.

    Pete
    ps: I do stand me comments about Montoya ... useless and McLaren will drop him not long after they get him, me thinks, unless Ron can tame the beast.
     
  26. ryalex

    ryalex Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Hey, he's got a great fantasy movie bad guy name...

    Gandalf voice: "And we must venture to the dark reaches of Sepang, were the dark lord Raikkonen sits in his cockpit of blood and terror..."
     
  27. PSk

    PSk F1 World Champ

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    :D

    Pete
     
  28. jmillard308

    jmillard308 F1 Veteran
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    Just one problem with that theory - they would go to the back of the grid. They only get bumped 10 places if they change an engine before final qualifying.

    John
     

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