The F1 thread

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Raid
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Re: The F1 thread

Post by Raid » Mon Nov 06, 2023 9:54 am

Actually I've been watching quite intently; Snowy and I tend to jump on a Discord chat and watch the races together so I've just been talking about it less on the forum. Yes, it's been a dire year if you're invested in the person coming first, but the race for second has been really compelling. I quite quickly switched off of caring about who won the race as it was clear even from the first race of the year that it was going to be another championship for Max; not only has his car been ridiculously dominant (the Red Bull may as well be in a different category - I'd call it F0 but I think Nintendo would take offense), but I think I could count on one hand the number of mistakes he's made all year. He's a deserving champion even if I detest the little sod.

There've been some fantastic fights throughout the rest of the pack. I think this is the strongest field of drivers I've seen in the sport in the 16 years I've been watching - there are only two duds in Sargeant and Stroll (and even he had a fine race this weekend just gone). A resurgent McLaren, Piastri having a really strong debut season, some brilliance from Albon and Williams, wily-old Fernando Alonso showing all of his years of experience, Lawson jumping into an Alpha Tauri halfway through the year and immediately performing, Sainz's genius defending in Singapore... there's been a ton totalk about this year.

And it's been nice to have someone to watch it with too. Ian and I are building a collection of in-jokes that I'm not going to try to explain here, but this is the first year in ages I've actually been able to watch alongside someone else and it makes it so much more interesting.
Last edited by Raid on Mon Nov 06, 2023 10:21 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: The F1 thread

Post by arqueturus » Mon Nov 06, 2023 10:20 am

My other half is a big fan of F1 and a huge Hamilton fan so it's not been the most pleasant year so far but it's certainly been interesting other than dominance of the Red Bull. We were in Japan earlier this year and had tickets for Suzuka which I enjoyed, it's the first one we've ever managed to get to. Those cars really do go around corners fast.

I'd agree that there's a lot going on too, lots of up and coming younger drivers and the realisation that experience counts for much too. It'll be interesting to see how well Max performs if he has some real competition because I have a suspicion that's he's massively brittle.

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Re: The F1 thread

Post by Raid » Mon Nov 06, 2023 10:29 am

Brittle? Maybe, but the guy is undoubtedly talented based on how he performed prior to this year. It's always tricky trying to detach a driver's performance from his car, Perez is the only real yardstick we have and he's had a shockingly poor season, but then that's normally the case for the second Red Bull and you have to assume that's partially down to something internal we're not privy to. I'm guessing there's an obligation for Perez to defer to Verstappen in all instances where it makes sense to do so, and I guess that has an impact on the driver's psychology if they know they'll not be allowed to win.

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Re: The F1 thread

Post by arqueturus » Mon Nov 06, 2023 11:05 am

To clarify, I think Verstappen is a brilliant talent but whenever things start going pear shaped he seems to unravel a fair bit. There's no doubt the Red Bull car is leagues ahead of the others but I do think that that shouldn't overshadow just how good Verstappen is, even if he's a petulant child too. As much as I find Hamilton a bit dull he's shown plenty of class this year which is to be commended imo - i'd be really interested to see how Max would handle that if the roles were reversed.

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Re: The F1 thread

Post by Raid » Mon Nov 06, 2023 11:20 am

Honestly I think you could say the same about Hamilton. I'm a big fan of Lewis, have been since 2007, but the way he comes across on the radio makes him sound a bit petulant when things aren't going his way. How often have we heard him complaining about his tyre strategy these last few years? But there aren't many drivers I trust more to do the job when it matters.

A lot of it comes down to adrenaline I think - Lewis is a class-act with his helmet off (sometimes with it on too), but he and every other F1 driver sound like they're moaning on the radio because that's how concern sounds when you're desperately trying to manage tyres and fuel and temperatures at 200mph while defending from someone behind you and things aren't looking to get any easier.

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Re: The F1 thread

Post by Raid » Mon Nov 06, 2023 2:39 pm

This just popped up in my Youtube recommendations. Keanu Reeves is doing a documentary on Brawn GP:


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Re: The F1 thread

Post by Wrathbone » Thu Feb 01, 2024 10:54 am

https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/formula1/68163799

Looks like it's for real this time. :o
Sources have told BBC Sport that all Mercedes team members have been called to a team briefing with boss Toto Wolff and technical director James Allison at 14:00 GMT on Thursday. This is likely to be to announce Hamilton is leaving.
He must have either a compelling reason to leave or some reliable inside knowledge of Ferrari's future potential, because otherwise it makes little sense to me.

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Re: The F1 thread

Post by eny » Thu Feb 01, 2024 11:01 am

He's a winner, he deserves to be in a team that wins, Mercedes haven't delivered. I want to see him with 8 WC's.
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Re: The F1 thread

Post by Drarok » Thu Feb 01, 2024 11:17 am

eny wrote:
Thu Feb 01, 2024 11:01 am
He's a winner, he deserves to be in a team that wins, Mercedes haven't delivered. I want to see him with 8 WC's.
And Ferrari have been looking really hot latel… no, wait!

People said the same of the Mercedes move, but this seems different somehow. I'm very sceptical, obvs.
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Re: The F1 thread

Post by Raid » Thu Feb 01, 2024 1:05 pm

Honestly if this goes through, it'll feel more like "I want to race for Ferrari before I retire" than "I want to move to a team where I can win". Still, the guy made probably the best career move in the history of the sport ten years ago, so who knows? The only thing that'll convince me this is a bad decision is if Alonso also somehow moves to Ferrari next year.

I think the biggest question really is what happens to his seat? I would have thought Norris would be the main candidate, but he literally just re-signed for McLaren last week. Hamilton had a contract with Mercedes for 2025 anyway, so if Ferrari are buying him out, then I suppose Merc could use that money to buy out someone else. Piastri is similarly contracted for 2026, but he'd probably be the cheaper buy-out. Do we think Alonso would be a candidate?
Last edited by Raid on Thu Feb 01, 2024 1:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: The F1 thread

Post by Wrathbone » Thu Feb 01, 2024 1:28 pm

If memory serves, there are significant engine changes coming in 2026, and although strictly speaking teams aren't allowed to start work on the 2026 car until 2025, I can absolutely imagine Ferrari having something quietly in the works that they've shown to Hamilton. It was Mercedes' engine plans that convinced him to leave McLaren, so maybe it's a similar deal here.

It's the culture difference that I find tricky to reconcile - i.e. Ferrari are very rigid in their methods, management structure and internal rules, which is something I can't see gelling well with Hamilton. If he's convinced of one course of action and the team insist on another course, it's going to take someone like Toto Wolff to mediate that, and I'm not sure Ferrari have a Toto.
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Re: The F1 thread

Post by Raid » Thu Feb 01, 2024 1:36 pm

Yeah, that's possible which is why I didn't immediately think it a bad move, but Ferrari haven't produced a class-leading power unit in over a decade - even when they seemed to have an advantage everyone expected it was because they were cheating, as that advantage disappeared immediately after that undisclosed settlement. Mercedes still had the best power unit prior to the switch to the Turbo Hybrids, and I think they'd invested heavily into the facilities to produce it - I've never seen anything to suggest Ferrari have done likewise.
Wrathbone wrote:
Thu Feb 01, 2024 1:28 pm
It's the culture difference that I find tricky to reconcile - i.e. Ferrari are very rigid in their methods, management structure and internal rules, which is something I can't see gelling well with Hamilton. If he's convinced of one course of action and the team insist on another course, it's going to take someone like Toto Wolff to mediate that, and I'm not sure Ferrari have a Toto.
Ferrari internal politics seem to be the absolute bane of their existence, and it's usually what's blamed when they have a bad year - see the stories from 2023, 2022, 2021, 2020, 2019.... It's astonishing they're still held in the same regard considering they're dropped the ball so often they've just started leaving it on the floor to save time. Their strategy team are absolutely atrocious - when Snowy and I were watching the races together last year over Discord, it became a running joke that they'd been replaced with a Magic 8 Ball or a malfunctioning espresso machine that someone was attempting to feed the tyre deg stats into.

Ferrari are, at the moment, a very rich team, and that's more from the stranglehold they have over the commercial rights than actual merit. They are not a very good team.

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Re: The F1 thread

Post by Wrathbone » Thu Feb 01, 2024 2:02 pm

At the very least, he needs to bring Bono with him. Whenever I hear Leclerc's or Sainz's race engineers, it's like they've got through to an automated AI support line.

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Re: The F1 thread

Post by Raid » Thu Feb 01, 2024 9:01 pm

It's official then.

https://www.racefans.net/2024/02/01/off ... n-ferrari/

A multi-year deal, apparently.

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Re: The F1 thread

Post by Snowy » Thu Feb 01, 2024 10:07 pm

Well I'll take Hamilton - all Ferrari needs to do now is build a car for him. I do wonder how it will work with Leclerc though, he needs a killer season this year I reckon to keep his top placing.
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