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Featured Brazilian GP Debrief: Rosberg Reigns Amidst Inter-Team Turmoil

Discussion in 'Formula 1' started by Ben Stevens, Nov 11, 2014.

  1. Ben Stevens

    Ben Stevens

    rosbergwin.jpg Heading into the championship finale, Nico Rosberg put together a dominant weekend to keep Lewis Hamilton firmly in his sights.

    After five consecutive race wins for his teammate, Nico Rosberg was in desperate need of a great performance in Brazil, and boy did he deliver.

    It was only fitting that in a race where Mercedes locked-up the record for most points ever in a season, Rosberg turned in arguably the most dominant performance in a Mercedes AMG car all year. Topping the timesheets across every session of the weekend -- practice, qualifying and the race -- Rosberg not only reiterated just how far ahead of the other teams Mercedes are, he also provided a timely reminder that he personally has what it takes to bring the fight to Lewis Hamilton.

    With that said, Mercedes weren't the only ones grabbing headlines in Interlagos, so read on for a round-up of all the big talking points to come from the 2014 Brazilian Grand Prix.

    Hamilton spins, Rosberg wins to keep title hopes in sight

    For a man who has had little go his way in recent times, Interlagos provided a significant boost for Nico Rosberg.

    Besides his chart-topping pace throughout the weekend, it was his teammate who made a costly error for once. On lap 28 Hamilton lost control of his car trying to push a set of used mediums to the absolute limit, taking to the run-off of turn 4 -- a mistake that cost the Brit 7.9 seconds, and a very good chance to undercut Rosberg in his next pit-stop. With the pressure off, Rosberg was able to settle into race management mode and dictate the race, which he did superbly.

    It really is a testament to just how 'on it' Hamilton is right now that he could lose nearly eight seconds to Rosberg, and still catch all the way up, as he nearly took the lead coming out of the pits on lap 52. Having said that, those lost seconds didn't necessarily constitute a lost win for the Brit. Rosberg didn't get a chance to really respond before Hamilton's spin led to him backing off, and the Pirellis clearly didn't have the life for the sustained pushing Hamilton needed. Furthermore, assuming the lost time would have brought Hamilton onto Rosberg's tail easier, the former would have had to deal with the increased tyre-wear resulting from sitting in Rosberg's turbulent air for even longer -- a problem exacerbated by the winding nature of the Autodromo Carlos Pace.

    So in my book Rosberg deserves full credit for this race victory. Did Hamilton have a great shot at the win? Certainly, but as we saw in the latter stages where they were within one second of each other, Rosberg was up to the task of matching Hamilton's times. He made no mistakes, pushed when he needed to and adequately took care of his tyres. Hamilton was always up against it to secure the pass, and for once, he just couldn't find a solution.

    massa1.jpg Massa Podium Highlights a Stellar Year for Williams

    Another race, another podium for Williams -- a fascinating case-study in the current financial landscape of Formula 1.

    For all intents and purposes, Williams is a 'big team' in name only. Despite its storied history, it has never been a financial heavyweight on the same level as teams like Red Bull and Ferrari -- by F1 standards its budget of ~£105 million is quite middling, and yet despite this colossal disadvantage, what they have achieved this year has been nothing short of remarkable.

    With one race to go in the 2014 season, Williams have a pole position and seven podiums to their name – that’s more of the former than Red Bull, and more of the latter than Ferrari and McLaren combined. In the constructor’s championship, they sit third on 254 points, 44 clear of Ferrari. Compare this to 2013, the team finished ninth in the constructor's championship, with a best result of eighth at the penultimate race in Austin – one of two points-scoring finishes all year.

    Extrapolating F1Times' calculations from October to the present date, their budget has wrought them £413,386 per point, the cheapest of anyone save the record-breaking Mercedes AMG. In contrast McLaren -- another Mercedes customer whose budget is almost double Williams', has had to pay £1.18 million for each of theirs.

    Full credit for this achievement has to go to Sir Frank Williams, Deputy-Principal Claire Williams, Technical Director Pat Symonds and the whole team back at the factory in Grove. It goes to show that spending exorbitantly is not a necessity to succeed in F1, and it gives us an idea of what everyone should reasonably expect for every team on the grid – the issue is to make sure that the reward matches the commitment, because right now, it requires an inordinate amount of risk.

    Williams has built a highly sustainable business outside F1, but even they would feel the difference between third and say, sixth (a realistic possibility if teams like Ferrari, McLaren, Lotus and Force India improve), if that was where they ended up in 2015 -- teams with less favourable contracts (Lotus, Force India) even more so, and yet they are spending at a similar rate. Finding a way to share revenues so teams can attempt to compete, but don’t have to fear bankruptcy if they fail to do so should be the goal of F1’s power brokers, the problem is, will they find a solution before it’s too late?

    _L4R1302.jpg Conflicting agendas stymie progress in inter-team talks

    Forget the Osbournes, when it comes to dysfunction, the F1 family takes the cake.

    You get the sense the F1 team principals wouldn't be able to agree on what pizzas to order, let alone how to solve the sport's woes. Whether it’s the engine freeze, cost caps, revenue distribution or even the smaller teams’ very existence, each party seems to have a different take on the matter, and possesses an indifference to any viewpoint that does not fit theirs.

    Sauber team principal Monisha Kaltenborn alleged on Monday that teams like hers were the target of an attempt by F1’s kingpins to oust them from the sport, something she attributed to their proposed solutions to the smaller teams’ financial problems, such as running year-old chassis or engines.

    As Jordan Adcock detailed over the weekend, it’s evident that F1 has reached a crisis point, and Kaltenborn's remarks certainly back that up. Clearly there has been a breakdown of trust between the teams, and they can’t be counted on to fix this themselves. Bernie Ecclestone should take it upon himself to set up independent arbitration, or allow the FIA to step in. To continue as we are now would be to slowly watch the life drain from the sport, because as it stands, a mere five teams starting on the 2015 grid is a very real possibility.

    Does Rosberg have a chance in Abu Dhabi? Can Williams take their success into next year? How do we solve these inter-team squabbles? Sound off below.
    • Like Like x 5
  2. Connor Caple

    Connor Caple
    Slowest Racer in Town...

    I still watch F1, but I've taken to recording it on the TiVo and fast-forwarding through the boring bits, which is most of it.

    I'm not sure I'll feel inclined to do any more than that next year.

    F1 is a non-event. They no longer race, they just catch up and push-to-pass with DRS. It's the most boring non-racing on the planet. They used to be at the cutting edge of automotive technology, now it's just one stupid regulation after another and sanitised racetracks to create a total yawnfest.

    I'm looking for a new, and actually exciting, Open Wheel series to watch but I doubt I'll find it.

    Thank goodness for the WTCC/BTCC and other tin-top racers who still know how to win in a real race... :thumbsup:
    • Agree Agree x 4
    • Like Like x 1
  3. I am going to have to disagree with you Connor. I'd say Nascar has that title all sewn up. Champcar too. But I love watching them also. I also love sim racing all of the disciplines too.

    F1 is the cutting edge. It is going through a rough patch right now, but it will spring back. It always does.

    F1 is the best racing on the planet in my opinion. It always has been and always will be. But alot could be done to make it better. But as usual, the health and safety brigade as well as the share holders are ruining the specatacle. It will bounce back.
    • Agree Agree x 2
  4. What I got from Brazil:
    1. Rosberg has the speed when he applies himself. I expect him to be really strong next season; and it was about time he stopped driving like a little b***h after Sochi and Austin.
    2. It could've been Mercedes's fault or Hamilton's fault but he cracked psychologically.
    3. The time couldn't be clearer that F1 needs Ecclestone to go
    4. Piquet is really f***ed up in the head. I guess like father like son.
  5. Milos

    Had things gone my way, who knows..

    well for Nico to win the title, Lewis needs to finish at least 3rd (considering Nico wins), as the gap is 17 points. At a track layout like Abu Dhabi, I don't think anyone will be able to match Merc, meaning they should get another 1-2 finish

    So only a miracle (failure) could let Nico win the title.
  6. Chris

    Ted Kravitz Appreciation Society Staff Premium

    Respectfully, I don't agree with you.
    2014 has seen some of the best racing in a long long time.
    It's become the popular thing to do in recent years, to say how "boring" the racing in F1 is. It's simply not true. Some of the races this year have been "all-time" great: Bahrain, Canada and Hungary just to name a few.
    We've had the title decided at the final race of the season in 2 of the last four seasons, and it's about to become 3 of the last 5.
    And finally we've seen the emergence and changing of the guard in F1 with drivers like Daniel Ricciardo, Valtteri Bottas, Kevin Magnussen and Dani Kvyat. F1 is in very safe hands with drivers of this calibre.

    As for next year, there's plenty to look forward to, including highly intriguing driver lineups (HAM/ROS - VET/RAI - ALO/???) and I'm very intrigued to see how Max Verstappen goes in his first season, he's a serious talent. And an overall more competitive grid, and not to mention the re-entry and rekindled legendary partnership between Mclaren and Honda.

    Whilst I don't agree with DRS, you can't say that F1 isn't at the cutting edge of technology anymore. Only the WEC and the FIA Formula E are in the ballpark, and even then, they're not even close to F1. The simple fact is that the regulations have to be incredibly strict, otherwise the cars would outgrow every single track and it would become too dangerous in a time period of as little as 3 years, such is the development rate of Formula One.

    Unfortunately this year the politics of the sport have somewhat overshadowed the unbelievably great season we are having, which is a shame. Hopefully they can resolve the monetary discrepancies between teams and the FOM, before not too long, because all this childish bickering is spoiling a season of epic proportions.
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2014
    • Agree Agree x 3
  7. Connor Caple

    Connor Caple
    Slowest Racer in Town...

    Everyone has an opinion - that was mine. Telling me what I "can't say" is not viable. I can say anything I like, it's an opinion. :D

    I'm not saying it's boring because 'it's the popular thing', but thanks for trying to denigrate my experience. I'm saying it's boring because, after about 50 years of watching F1, I am BORED.

    There was not 'some of the best racing ' this year, at all. I have no idea what you have been watching on TV but I can only assume that your basis for comparison is only the last 5 years or so?

    F1 is no longer at the cutting edge of technology - they have become over-regulated and overly sanitised, as I already stated. They cut the engine sizes, they slow the tracks down, they make overtaking difficult so have to add in artificial overtaking measures like DRS, they cut the engine power, they bring in 'eco measures' for fuel usage - I want to see them RACE for goodness sake, not mess about trying to make their cars fuel efficient. If I wanted fuel efficient I'd get Kia to start an F1 team - that's how exciting it is now. :rolleyes:

    I started watching F1 in the 1960s when our family had the first television in our street and all the neighbours and friends used to come round to watch sporting events.. I saw the excitement, the battles on track, the deaths and the push for safety features through the 70s and 80s. I watched some fairly interesting battles in the 90s, then it all stared to go downhill around the millenium.

    It's my opinion based on my experience, yours differs. That's nice. :barefoot:
    • Agree Agree x 1
  8. What did Piquet do?
  9. Yes, I am intrigued too. What has he done lately?
  10. Chris

    Ted Kravitz Appreciation Society Staff Premium

    His podium interview at the GP was pretty cringe-worthy.
    He basically just told Lewis how jealous he was of him because of Nicole. Lol
    • Haha Haha x 1
    • Agree Agree x 1
  11. David O'Reilly

    David O'Reilly
    A bad quali means I can go forwards in the race.

    I have a lot of respect for Rosberg.
    A 7 time WDC M Schumacher came to join him and he saw him off.
    The "fastest driver in F1" came to join him and he has out qualified him and sits within 17 points of him after 18 races.
    How many drivers could have withstood the pressure that Rosberg has withstood?
    At the same time he is intelligent, frank and does not have an ego the size of Kansas.
    He gives great speeches on podium and interviews exceptionally well.

    Whats he got to do to stop commentators being surprised when he outpaces Lewis?
    I have become a fan of this guy.
    • Agree Agree x 5
  12. Montreal and Budapest spring to mind, Bahrain was a cracker to.
    • Agree Agree x 3
  13. Oh you mean Nelson Piquet. Its just that you said "like father like son" and that got me confused.

    Yes he was a bit excited on the podium. But I never thought his son was overly like his father.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  14. I hope some people don't take this wrong, but he would have to be British.:whistling:
    I believe I'm not the only one who has noticed that 'some' media people are a bit biased in favour of British drivers or teams.
  15. mystaaRS

    If you get a Quali Place, you can get a Race Pace

    I do notice that at times, but wouldn't RTL be the same towards Vettel and Rosberg for example, or any channel with drivers from the same country? Of course ;)
  16. David O'Reilly

    David O'Reilly
    A bad quali means I can go forwards in the race.

    Yes I think you are right.
    Many of them do have that bias towards the "brilliant Hamilton" vs the "methodical hard working Rosberg"
    Its as if there is a script for the way the end of the season should be playing out and to his credit Rosberg hasn't read it.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  17. Chris

    Ted Kravitz Appreciation Society Staff Premium

    Ohh, I see how this works now...
    • Beer Beer x 1
  18. Chris

    Ted Kravitz Appreciation Society Staff Premium

    I didn't say that, @f.1. Said it :p
    • Agree Agree x 1
  19. Just so you know, the engines are cutting edge in technology, the future is all about fuel efficiency, so F1 becoming more fuel efficient because that is relevant not screaming V10's anymore, the engine power is around the same as last year if not a little more in Mercedes engines and next year they are being developed further so that point is very much wrong, the world has moved on and that is the future
    • Agree Agree x 1
  20. Chris

    Ted Kravitz Appreciation Society Staff Premium


    The V10's and V8's of yesteryear are by comparison: Dinosaurs.
    The push by the WEC for more efficient engines and better energy recovery systems had put F1 behind in terms of "cutting edge technology". These new power units are unbelievably complex, and are easily the most "cutting edge" racing engines on the planet right now.
    • Agree Agree x 2