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Pirelli reveals teams' tyre choices for British GP

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Formula 1 tyre supplier Pirelli has revealed the choices made by teams for next weekend’s British Grand Prix.

Pirelli has nominated the C1, C2 and C3 compounds for the grand prix at the high-energy Silverstone circuit, the three hardest compounds from its range.

As usual Pirelli mandates one of each compound for every driver, after which they are permitted free choice for the remaining 10 sets from their allocation of 13.

The front-running teams have all made similar choices, with Ferrari and Red Bull opting for nine sets of Softs, three sets of Mediums, and just one set of Hards.

Both Mercedes drivers will have eight sets of Softs, four Mediums and one allocation of Hards.

Renault has adopted the most aggressive approach, choosing 10 sets of Softs, which leaves Daniel Ricciardo with a sole batch of Mediums.

Williams has been the most conservative; both of its drivers will have seven sets of Softs available, with George Russell in receipt of five sets of Mediums.

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Mercedes' undefeated streak in the 2019 Formula 1 season came to an end at the Austrian Grand Prix, as the seemingly flawless W10 finally revealed that it has a weakness. Jake Boxall-Legge and Edd Straw join Glenn Freeman to explain what went wrong for Mercedes in Austria, and they also explore if Ferrari's recent upturn in form can be attributed to its aero upgrades or another part of the package

MIKA: Considering Mercedes had to "Lift and Coast" way before breaking zones and STILL get P3 and P5 (Watching on boards) shows how dominant they really are. If they don't get on top of this issue, they will struggle in Singapore and perhaps Mexico.

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F1: Kubica's Driver of the Day award was "technical error"

F1: Kubica's Driver of the Day award was "technical error"

The Formula 1 organisation has admitted that it got it wrong by announcing Robert Kubica as Driver of the Day in Austria.
To the surprise of fans worldwide, even in his native Poland, the Williams driver’s name came up on the screen at the end of the race.

That decision aroused some curiosity because the afternoon was dominated by the sensational battle between Red Bull driver Max Verstappen and Ferrari star Charles Leclerc.

In contrast Kubica finished three laps down in 20th and last place, logging the worst finish achieved by any driver during the 2019 season, and indeed the worst of his own entire career – beating the 18th place he has achieved six times, including the four races prior to Austria.

However, after two days of fact checking and what it calls “verification” F1 announced the change of winner on its own website this afternoon, with race winner Verstappen getting the nod instead.

The story noted: “It was a performance that will live long in the memory, so it’s perhaps unsurprising that fans voted Max Verstappen the overwhelming Driver of the Day for his superb victory in Austria.

“On Sunday, a technical error resulted in Williams’ Robert Kubica being declared the winner after he was incorrectly allocated a number of votes.

“However, following verification, we can reveal that Verstappen scooped 74% of the public vote, with long-time leader Charles Leclerc receiving 11% and Carlos Sainz 7% for his brilliant run from P19 on the grid to P8.”

When contacted by Motorsport.com for an explanation of the mistake, an F1 spokesman said: “We won’t say more than what we’ve said so far.”

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Haas sponsor ordered to drop logo, reveal team payments

Haas sponsor ordered to drop logo, reveal team payments

Haas Formula 1 title sponsor Rich Energy cannot use its stag logo in the United Kingdom after July 18, a court order has confirmed.
As part of the judgement, the energy drink company's boss William Storey has to disclose full details of the company’s sponsorship arrangements with Haas.

The court order is the latest step following the recent judgement in favour of ATB Sales Limited in its action against Rich Energy Limited, Storey, and logo designer Staxoweb Limited. ATB had successfully claimed that Rich’s logo infringed the copyright of its Whyte Bikes logo.

The court order was made last Thursday by judge Melissa Clarke, but full details were only disclosed when it was released yesterday by the Intellectual Property Enterprise Court.

The defendants had requested permission to appeal the original decision at the Court of Appeal, but this has been refused. However, they still have the option of asking the Court of Appeal itself for permission to appeal, but this has to be done by July 18. They had asked for a three-month stay, but were granted only three weeks.

By August 1 the defendants have to “deliver up or cause to be delivered up to the Claimant’s premises [...] or destroy or cause to be destroyed; or alter so as no longer to be infringing or cause such alteration; all Infringing Copies, and any articles specifically designed or adapted for making Infringing Copies, in their possession or control in the UK.”

The defendants have the pay ATB’s costs of £35,416 by July 13th, while damages for copyright infringement will be assessed at a later hearing.

The court order noted: “The Claimant is entitled, at its election, to an inquiry as to damages or an account of the profits accruing to the Defendants as a result of their infringement of the Claimant’s copyright in C’s Device.”

Romain Grosjean, Haas F1 Team VF-19

In relation to that Storey has to provide information that will provide some clarity about Rich Energy’s financial situation, including its relationship with Haas. He has to disclose the following by August 1st:

“The First and Second Defendant’s total UK and global sales to date of cans of ‘Rich Energy’ drink bearing D1’s Device, and the total sums received from such sales;

“The First Defendant’s total UK and global sales to date of any other products bearing D1’s Device, and the total sums received from such sales;

“An estimate of the costs incurred in making such sales, and an explanation of how that estimate was reached;

“Figures showing: Any sums of money invested in or made available to the First Defendant, including for the avoidance of doubt sums invested in or made available to the First Defendant in connection with its sponsorship of the Haas F1 Team;

“Any sums of money invested by third parties in any other company or entity controlled by the Second Defendant in connection with and/or pursuant to the First Defendant’s sponsorship of the Haas F1 Team;

“Full details of any sums of money paid or payable to the Haas F1 Team pursuant to the First Defendant’s sponsorship of the Haas F1 Team, indicating in each case whether such sums were paid or payable by the First Defendant or by any other entity;

“An estimate of the proportion of the £50,000 paid to the Third Defendant to produce, inter alia [among other things], a logo for the First Defendant which is attributable to the work of designing of a logo as part of that commission, and an explanation of how that estimate was reached.”

It remains to be seen whether the July 18 deadline gives Rich Energy a window in which to use the stag logo at the upcoming British GP. The team has not used it, at Rich’s request, since the Canadian GP.

When contacted by Motorsport.com, a Haas F1 spokesman said the team had no comment to make on the latest developments.

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Norris knew Hamilton had more to lose in Austria start battle

Norris knew Hamilton had more to lose in Austria start battle

Lando Norris says he knew he could take more risks than Lewis Hamilton when he went around the outside of the world champion at the first corner of the Austrian Grand Prix.
After lining up fifth on the grid, Norris moved up one place at the start after Max Verstappen nearly stalled, and then he muscled his way up to third when he went around the outside of Hamilton's Mercedes at the opening corner.

"The first lap was the best bit, I think!" said Norris, who eventually went on to finish sixth. "We've been good on starts as a team, I've just done a couple of mistakes in the past couple of races but in Paul Ricard I did a decent job, not quite good enough, but this weekend I got a good start.

"I got around Turn 1 thinking 'do I run off, do I not', but yeah I had faith in Lewis that he wouldn't do anything silly. The situation he's in I can take more risk than he can. So had a go around the outside of him heading into turn 1, which still wasn't easy."

Norris slipped back behind Hamilton and Kimi Raikkonen later in the lap, but was able to then repass the Finn before bringing home more important points for his McLaren team.

"It was a shame I couldn't stay ahead of Lewis, because he was quick on the straights, which was a bit frustrating. But apart from that we did a better job on the opening lap which was nice.

"After that it was more controlling the race, getting past the Alfa, because we know and we're confident that we had good pace, just managing the tyres and trying to make it to the end.

"I know there's more time, more result to come from me than in the first few corners. It's about getting to the end, learning about how to manage the battery and manage the tyres and so on.

"There's more of a gain doing that than trying to get one position in Turn 1 and risking doing something stupid. I think I dropped further back than what I wanted to, but I took the safe option for a good reason. If I want to push, and I need to, I can go forward."

Norris also believed that battling eventual race winner Verstappen later in the race, as the Dutchman began to recover his lost places, was important for helping his team understand its strengths and weaknesses.

"Max struggled to get past me initially, but obviously he went on to win so you can see the pace in the car that they had was a big advantage," he said. "But it still wasn't easy for him to get past on the opening laps.

"It was nice to race them, you can see where they're gaining, and where they're maybe not far away in terms of our pace compared to theirs.

"It was a brief spell competing against guys who are quicker than us, but that's where we want to be eventually, so if we keep working hard we'll see if one day we'll be fighting them off."

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Honda admit engine was 'on the edge' during Verstappen's Austria victory

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Max Verstappen’s victory in Austria was significant enough on its own as it ended Mercedes’ perfect run in 2019 – but it ended an even longer wait for Honda.

The Japanese manufacturer is the only new entrant since the current power unit regulations were introduced, returning to Formula 1 in 2015. Melbourne 2019 saw the first podium since that return, and at the Red Bull Ring, a Honda-powered car won for the first time since 2006, with F1 Technical Director Toyoharu Tanabe sent up to the podium to collect the constructors’ trophy.

“I’m very happy to see Max’s strong race,” he said after the race. “Just after the race start I was a bit surprised and then got nervous. After that his pace was good, very good. In the middle of the race I started to believe we could go to a higher position. Then, finally, Max finished the race in first place, and it was a fantastic day.

“I was surprised when I was told to go [to the podium],” he added. “I had no idea what I should do and that’s why I got to the podium later than other people. Normally you need to stay before the National Anthem – I thought I should be there for that but I was a bit late. But I joined after that. This was my first time – I was worried about what to do and no one told me!”

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The Honda victory came in a race where Mercedes were forced to run their power unit conservatively due to overheating concerns, and Tanabe was not expecting Honda to show such a high level of performance.

“We were on the edge on terms of cooling,” he said. “Of course, the high temperatures forced us to save the power unit. We tried to extract as much power as we could.

“I did not [expect to be competitive] like this, be so strong. From the previous races we could see a very strong Mercedes but sometimes we could compete with Ferrari. Differently, we showed the strongest performance against them, so I’m a bit surprised.”

There were tearful celebrations on Sunday night in Austria – but with Mercedes having won the first eight races of the season, Tanabe is already turning his attentions to closing the gap further to the championship leaders.

“Of course this result encourages the members of our development team, but from the beginning of the season we could really see a big gap to Mercedes and Ferrari. In Austria it was okay; we were strong, but for the next race, I cannot guarantee we’ll be a strong as [Sunday], that we’ll have the same competitiveness compared with the others.

“It means we need to keep pushing very hard, to get the confidence that we are strong and that when we’ll make no mistakes we will win. We want to have that level and need to keep pushing."

 

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Verstappen fan beats odds of 100,000 to 1 as he correctly predicts Austrian GP result

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A Max Verstappen fan has won a dream VIP trip to see his hero race at the United States Grand Prix after successfully predicting various outcomes at last weekend’s Austrian Grand Prix – including Verstappen winning the race.

Bart Altenburg, 22, from Utrecht in the Netherlands, scooped the prize as he beat odds of 100,000 to 1 to become the first person to record a perfect score of 10 out of 10 in the free-to-enter F1 Play prediction game.

Among the in-race outcomes Bart correctly predicted were: the podium finishers in the correct order (itself a 46 to 1 shot), that all 20 cars would finish the race (a bold choice given it had only happened eight times previously in history), the winning margin and the fastest lap setter.

As a result, he and a friend will be flown to Austin at the beginning of November where he will enjoy a dream weekend of F1 racing with VIP Paddock Club Passes that will provide Prime Viewing, Paddock Tours and Pit Lane access as well as fine dining throughout the weekend.

“I'm so happy to hear that I'm the first ever winner of the F1 play game!” said Bart. “The Austrian GP was one of the best and also the most exciting F1 races I think I ever watched!

“Max Verstappen winning like that was amazing, I must admit my hands were shaking and I might have had a little tear in the corner of my eye when he passed Charles Leclerc.

“I sort of feel like I’m Charlie and I found a golden ticket.”

The only thing left for Bart to do now is to get a passport – something he doesn’t currently have having never left his homeland.

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BINOTTO: LECLERC IS ALREADY PREPARED FOR THE NEXT ONE

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Although Ferrari are still aggrieved after the Austrian Grand Prix, believing they were robbed of victory at Red Bull Ring, but their young driver Charles Leclerc is already looking ahead to the next race according to the team boss  Mattia Binotto.

Much has been written about the Max Verstappen versus Leclerc battle for the lead in Spielberg on Sunday, there was an investigation and in the end the Red Bull driver won despite the argy-bargy for the lead.

In the wake of a nail-biting race Binotto said, “We still believe that this is a wrong decision – that’s our own opinion. We believe that Charles leaves the entire space, he had no fault, a collision has happened and he has been pushed and forced off the track.”

“Having said that, we respectfully the decision of the stewards. They are the judge, we need to respect that. And more than that, as a Ferrari fan – and I am an ultimate Ferrari fan – I think it’s time for F1 to turn page and look ahead.

“We are not supporting the decision but somehow we understand the fact we need to move forward and overall that’s good for the sport and good for F1. So bravo to Verstappen, the victory of him, he did a fantastic race today, as Charles as well. Charles drove very well, but there will be new opportunities.

“I think there is no difficulty to encourage him, I think he’s already prepared for the next one. [This] gives him even more of a boost to somehow get his first victory in F1.

“Certainly, he’s sorry for the [result] – I think after the quali of yesterday it was somehow very optimistic and after the first laps of the race he was controlling the race and saw himself in a good position.

“But that’s what’s good in the sport – the chequered flag is only at the end of the race, and everything may happen. So I think he’s simply looking ahead at the next races as a new challenge and he’s very hungry, so I’m pretty sure sooner or later it will be his time,” added Binotto.

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HAMILTON HEADS HOME AS FAVOURITE BUT UNDER PRESSURE

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All roads lead to Silverstone in July as Great Britain hosts the tenth round of the 2019 Formula 1 season.

British star Lewis Hamilton is odds-on favourite in the Formula 1 betting to win the race for the fifth time in six years despite a disappointing showing at the Austrian Grand Prix.

Hamilton finished fifth in Austria, but still holds a healthy 31 point advantage over Mercedes teammate Valtteri Bottas at the top of the Drivers’ Championship.

Read on as we look at the key talking points heading into the British Grand Prix:

Hamilton aiming to bounce back on home soil

The five-time world champion hadn’t finished out of the first two in the first eight races this season, but he couldn’t maintain that run in Austria.

A damaged front wing cost Hamilton his chance of victory and losing out on fourth place to Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel late in the race will only have added to his frustration.

Hamilton had won the previous four races and his recent record at Silverstone suggests he will undoubtedly be the man to beat on July 14.

The 34-year-old finished second behind Vettel in the 2018 renewal, but he is strongly fancied to exact his revenge this time around.

Verstappen could emerge as main title rival

Max Verstappen’s victory in Austria left him 71 points behind Hamilton in the title race, but he will believe he can close the gap over the next few months.

Verstappen produced a stunning drive to beat Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc and give Red Bull their first win since Daniel Ricciardo claimed the Mexican Grand Prix in 2018.

The 21-year-old has made a solid start to the 2019 campaign, but his performance in Austria suggests he could yet become a factor in this season’s title battle.

He has finished no worse than fifth in the last three British Grand Prix and it would be no surprise to see him on the podium this year.

Fragile Vettel still struggling to deliver

Vettel heads to Britain fourth in the standings, 74 points behind Hamilton after another average showing at the Austrian Grand Prix.

He was outpaced by his teammate in Austria and he looks a shadow of the driver who won four successive titles between 2010 and 2013.

The German admitted that he was disillusioned with the sport after a controversial penalty denied him victory in Canada and handed Hamilton first place.

Leclerc’s second place finish in Austria left him just 18 points behind Vettel and it will be interesting to see which driver Ferrari favours over the coming weeks.

Prediction

Hamilton was certainly below his best in Austria, but the British Grand Prix usually brings out the best in him and he looks banker material at odds of 1.83 to win his seventh race of the season.

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AUSTRIAN GRAND PRIX ON ESPN SETS VIEWERSHIP RECORD

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The live telecast of the Formula 1 myWorld Austrian Grand Prix on ESPN2 on Sunday, June 30, earned the largest U.S. television viewership for the event since it returned to the F1 schedule in 1997.

With an average of 640,000 viewers, the audience was up 48 percent over ESPN2’s telecast last year (431,000 average) and up 94 percent from the telecast on CNBC in 2017 (330,000 viewers). In ESPN’s second season since returning to live F1 race coverage, it was the seventh time this year in nine F1 races that viewership has grown year-over-year, and the second-largest year-over-year growth for a race this season.

Through nine races, F1 is averaging 684,000 viewers per race on ESPN networks, an increase of 21 percent over last year (567,000) and up 18 percent over NBC networks in 2017 (579,000).

The Austrian Grand Prix telecast started at 9:05 a.m. and the audience peaked at 776,000 viewers between 10:30-10:45 a.m. as Max Verstappen headed toward his first win of the season after a late-race battle for the lead with Charles Leclerc.

F1 fans also tuned in for ESPN2’s live telecast of qualifying on Saturday – the average of 342,000 viewers was up 33 percent over the audience for qualifying in 2018.

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Mercedes 'too optimistic' with radiator size amid cooling woes

Mercedes F1 in action in Austria

Mercedes’ overheating problems in Austria were caused by the manufacturer being “a bit optimistic” with the size of its radiators inside the W10.

Mercedes suffered from overheating problems throughout the Austrian Grand Prix weekend, prompting the team to open up bodywork on its W10.

Its plight was accentuated by exceptionally hot ambient temperatures, contributing to Valtteri Bottas taking third and Lewis Hamilton only fifth.

“Fundamentally the car doesn’t have big enough radiators and that’s something that we were a bit optimistic with how much we could get out of the cooling system,” said trackside engineering director Andrew Shovlin.

“It’s underdelivered to what we hoped we could achieve, and it’s meant that we are carrying this issue where in the very hot races we will be struggling to keep everything cool enough.

"You can increase the amount of cooling you get out of the car by opening up the bodywork exits and in Austria it was 35 degrees, that actually put us at the upper end of what we could achieve just by opening the car up. So, we were on limit.

“When you get to that point you are really limited in your options. You can start to use lift and coast, which is where the drivers get towards the end of the straight and they back off the throttle.

“They then brake a bit later and you have a period where the car is just coasting into the corner, the engine is not doing work and you can lose a fair bit of temperature like that.

"But, as you saw in the race, we were having to ask our drivers to increase that to around 400 metres per lap and that is why they were so compromised on performance.

“You can also turn the engine down a bit, then it will generate less heat, but you’ve got less power and you are slower on the straights.”

Shovlin confirmed that Mercedes is working on alleviating the problem for future grands prix.

“So, it was definitely a significant limitation in Austria,” he said.

“We are working on systems, we were working on them before Austria, to try and improve this problem and we should be in a better position.

“But, it all really goes down to the fundamental design of the car, where in the push for very, very tight packaging, we have ended up being undercooled overall.”

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Red Bull doesn't understand why it was so quick in Austria

Red Bull doesn't understand why it was so quick in Austria

Red Bull has admitted it does not fully understand why its car was so fast at the Austrian Grand Prix.
Max Verstappen delivered his and his team's first victory of the season at the Red Bull Ring, after a brilliant charge through the field as the Dutchman fought back from an anti-stall moment at the start.

That recovery was helped with some impressive pace at the power-sensitive track, but the relative performance against both Ferrari and Mercedes has left Red Bull team boss Christian Horner slightly unsure of how to explain it.

"In the second half of the race, we were really on fire," explained Horner. "The car was incredibly quick. The reality is that we don't fully understand why.

"Obviously the updates we have been bringing to the car over the last couple of races have started to come together and work very well, but this race was won the hard way. We had to go and pass three of the four main opposition and Max did just that."

Red Bull's updates in Austria included a new front wing, which Verstappen himself reckoned had helped improve the feel and grip of the car.

Its win has justified Red Bull's switch from Renault to Honda this year, and moves the team closer the target of five victories that its motorsport advisor Helmut Marko said he was looking at for the 2019 campaign.

Although that five-win ambition looks difficult on the back of Mercedes' strong start to the campaign, Marko is standing by his call.

"You were in the press conference in Tokyo where I promised five wins," he told the media. "Some people declared me crazy or whatsoever, but I still believe we can achieve that."

Horner is more cautious, however, and says that he just wants to see steady progress over the campaign rather than defining a specific target.

"We take things one race at a time," he said. "We have achieved a race win with Honda, which is a great moment for them. I think they have had one win in the previous 27 years, so we will now try to build on that.

"We will keep getting performance to the car and keep pushing, but the first target is very much achieved."

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Binotto "ashamed" F1 didn't back changing 2019 tyres

Binotto "ashamed" F1 didn't back changing 2019 tyres

Ferrari team boss Mattia Binotto feels "really ashamed" that Formula 1 rivals opted not to support bring back Pirelli's 2018 tyres to have more races like the Austrian Grand Prix.
Binotto's driver Charles Leclerc missed out on his first win in F1 and the team's first grand prix victory of the season at the Red Bull Ring after being passed by Max Verstappen late on.

It brought an end to the perfect start of the Mercedes team, which had won all eight races to that point but was hamstrung in Austria by overheating problems.

At the start of the weekend Binotto had been part of a push to get Pirelli to drop its thinner-tread 2019 tyres and go back to last year's specification because too many teams, including Ferrari, were unable to get them to work and Mercedes was dominating.

After the race, Binotto said: "Today has been a good battle. Normally you have good battles when you do not have a car that's overperforming, so this weekend has been great in the respect.

"I think we missed a great opportunity on the tyres decision. I think we should have done something.

"Sometimes we are discussing a lot and we are not acting, so I still feel really ashamed that we didn't change the specification of the tyres for the rest of the season.

"That could have been a great opportunity to close the field."

Leclerc qualified on pole in Austria with Mercedes' world championship leader Lewis Hamilton second-fastest and Verstappen third on the grid.

On-track during the race, Verstappen caught and passed Sebastian Vettel's Ferrari, the Mercedes of Valtteri Bottas and finally Leclerc.

The mixed-up formbook was likely a combination of the Red Bull Ring's short layout and the high ambient temperatures that gave each team cooling concerns.

Red Bull team boss Christian Horner, whose outfit supported a change to 2018 Pirellis later this season, did not believe that the Austrian GP proved the bid to change tyres was wrong.

"I think there are still issues," he said. "I think what we have is something unique to here. You have to look over a span of races, but there was a vote on that and it is clear where we are at."

However, McLaren F1 team principal Andreas Seidl said the situation simply needed to be accepted.

Answering a question about whether F1 had too many penalties – as the race ended with Verstappen's win in doubt because of an investigation into his pass on Leclerc – Seidl said: "It is a bit like the tyre discussions.

"The rules we have in place are the result of team bosses and drivers asking for these rules, so this is why I think we have to accept we have these rules now."

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Silverstone concerned by F1's London race hopes

Silverstone concerned by F1's London race hopes

The escalating prospect of a Formula 1 race in London has prompted fresh concern for Silverstone amid its negotiation of a new British Grand Prix deal.
A grand prix in the English capital has been explored extensively by F1 owner Liberty Media and London mayor Sadiq Khan has previously stated it “should be possible to organise”.

This has always been touted as an additional event to the British GP and originally slated by F1 sporting director Ross Brawn as a prospect “not slap-bang in the centre of London, but Greater London”.

Silverstone is preparing to host the final race of its current deal after activating a release clause in its contract with F1 to avoid paying unsustainable hosting fees.

It has been negotiating a fresh contract but has become concerned by the emergence of an event in London’s docklands as the favoured option for a separate race in the country.

The same area of London will host the final race of 2019/20 season of the ABB FIA Formula E series, which will return to the city at the ExCeL exhibition centre.

Motorsport.com understands Silverstone was only recently been made aware of the extent of the progress of an F1 race in east London.

Though such a grand prix would be unlikely for some time its emergence would present a threat to Silverstone, which is based just two hours north of the city.

Silverstone’s fear is that the proximity of the events if both were on the calendar, and the narrow range of dates available to run them during the British summer, would hurt attendance and make hosting the British GP financially unsustainable.

While talk of an F1 race in London has been ongoing for some time, Silverstone managing director Stuart Pringle told the BBC that F1 has admitted its desire to him “for the first time”.

He added: “That's a material change because it's different to previous arrangements and Britain is not a very big island and it's a commercial concern.”

Pringle said that Silverstone was “nearly obliterated” by the terms of committing to a new 17-year F1 deal back in 2009.

In recent years the British Racing Drivers’ Club-owned venue has expanded its portfolio to try to create a business model that is not dependent on the British GP.

That has included nailing down events like MotoGP and a festival based around a new deal to host Britain’s World Rallycross round, plus non-racing components like the Silverstone Experience and a brand new hotel.

Negotiations between F1 and Silverstone continue ahead of the 2019 British GP, which will be held on July 14.

Last week, five-time world champion and winner of five British GPs Lewis Hamilton said a London race would be “awesome” and that it “wouldn’t be bad to have two races in the UK”.

However, he stressed the significance of not losing Silverstone.

“The UK is really amongst the foundation of what this sport is, and if you start taking away the legendary races, and it’s all just new ones, you lose all the history and all the culture,” said Hamilton.

“I truly believe that they’ve got to keep F1 in the UK, and particularly Silverstone.

“It’s such an awesome track, such an awesome place. It’s one of the biggest turnouts of the whole season. You can’t turn your back on that.”

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How Honda went from F1's biggest joke to winning again

After years of struggle and embarrassment, Honda is finally a winner again in Formula 1, doing so at Red Bull's home race in Austria with Max Verstappen.
It's been a long journey for the Japanese manufacturer since its disastrous first test back with McLaren in 2014, and the forgettable years that followed.

Edd Straw and Ben Anderson - who have both followed Honda's tortured path back to F1 glory closely - join Glenn Freeman to explain the key turning points that ultimately paved the way for it to take its first victory since the 2006 Hungarian Grand Prix with Jenson Button.

They also look back at McLaren's role in Honda's fortunes, after it ended their relationship in 2017 to switch to customer Renault power

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Racing Point hopes to look in "different direction" with updates

Racing Point hopes to look in "different direction" with updates

Racing Point Formula 1 team technical director Andy Green remains hopeful that a major update package due before the summer break will help the team start looking in a "different direction".

In a race of no attrition in Austria, Sergio Perez finished 11th, not far behind the Alfas of Kimi Raikkonen and Antonio Giovinazzi, while Lance Stroll was 14th, having lost some time due to an issue with the FIA fuel-flow meter.

The team has now made the points just once in the last five races, when Stroll finished ninth in Canada, and lies seventh in the championship.

Green concedes that there is work to be done.

"In the end we weren't quick enough, as simple as that," he told Motorsport.com. "We underperformed in qualifying, so we were in the wrong part of the grid, and once you're there, it's so difficult to do anything.

"We'll pick ourselves up, and go to the next one. We know that there are improvements coming. You can see in the last few performances, we're definitely making inroads."

As previously reported, the team has a major update coming before the summer break that represents a change of aero philosophy.

"There are a few little aero bits at Silverstone, and we'll keep them coming," said Green.

"It's a case of starting to look in a different direction. So there's a small update at Silverstone, and the bigger ones are later, Germany/Hungary time. Silverstone is a small step towards that."

While Racing Point team beat midfield rivals Renault, Toro Rosso and Haas in Austria, team boss Otmar Szafnauer admitted that 11th was a poor reward.

"It was very frustrating," he told Motorsport.com. "Especially when we were just a couple of seconds off Raikkonen and Giovinazzi, and we matched their race pace.

"It's just a matter of them getting us due to qualifying. We had good starts and were able to catch them, but when the race pace is the same, you can't overtake.

"It is a positive that we can race with the Renaults now, although Alfa Romeo beat us, it was very, very close. So just a little bit of improvement on our part, and we'll get it."

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Alonso, Vandoorne deserve "a lot of credit" for McLaren form

Alonso, Vandoorne deserve "a lot of credit" for McLaren form

Fernando Alonso and Stoffel Vandoorne deserve a "lot of credit" for helping McLaren develop a much better Formula 1 car this year, says its new team boss Andreas Seidl.

Although both drivers endured frustrations with McLaren's lack of competitiveness over recent years, Seidl thinks that the job they did in steering the team down the right development path has been hugely important.

But even Seidl said that he could never have expected McLaren to have made as swift progress as it has, with the Woking-based outfit tightening its grip as the 'best of the rest' outfit behind the top three teams.

"I think no one expected it inside the team, after finishing the [2018] season as the ninth fastest car to make such a step," said Seidl, when asked by Motorsport.com if he had been expecting such a step forward.

"It simply shows that a lot of the changes that were triggered last year are paying off. The team did a good job in bringing this year's car on track.

"They understood a lot after the input of the drivers from last year, and we should pay a lot of credit to Fernando and Stoffel, pointing out what the weaknesses were and what direction we needed to develop the car. That all pays off now."

Despite McLaren's 20 points advantage over Renault in the constructors' championship, though, Seidl is well aware that the situation can change quickly – so his team cannot relax.

"The target is for us this year to still keep going with the development of the car," he explained. "Of course now we want to make sure that we keep this [fourth] position for a while, but still we have seen it can change quickly again. It is still a tight battle.

"The gaps we have today are nothing over a race distance, so it is important to not get too excited about it, keep our head down and keep focusing on the weaknesses we still have on the car."

But although cautious about the remainder of the campaign, Seidl thinks the pace of the McLaren means for this first time it is worthy of its strong standing in the constructors' championship.

"In the last two races we also had the fourth fastest car, so we deserve to be in fourth place in the constructors' championship," he said.

"But up to the Paul Ricard race we have to be honest: we didn't have the fourth fastest car. It was somewhere between the fifth and seventh fastest car and in the end we were in P4 because we had better reliability, better pit stops, better strategy, or better understanding of the tyres."

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  • 2 weeks later...

If Bottas didn't have bad luck he wouldn't have any at all.  My god this man gets robbed so often.

Wth is up with Vettel?  He's driving like a 2nd seat.

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3 hours ago, skalls said:

If Bottas didn't have bad luck he wouldn't have any at all.  My god this man gets robbed so often.

Wth is up with Vettel?  He's driving like a 2nd seat.

I think the Canada penalty messed with his head, and it doesn't take much to mess with his head. He needs to work on his mental game...

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SCHUMACHER: SEBASTIAN RISKS LOSING NUMBER ONE STATUS AT FERRARI

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Sebastian Vettel is at risk of being usurped by his young Ferrari teammate Charles Leclerc and losing his number one status in the team warns former grand prix winner Ralf Schumacher.

After standing on the Silverstone podium, Leclerc said it had been “the race I enjoyed the most in my Formula 1 career“.

At the same time, it may have been one of 32-year-old quadruple world champion Vettel’s least enjoyable.

The German’s first duty in parc ferme, for instance, was to apologise to Max Verstappen for hitting him from behind.

Earlier, Leclerc and Red Bull’s Verstappen had engaged in a thrilling on-track battle.

“Two young drivers are duelling but one of the older ones cannot manage it,” Schumacher told Sky Deutschland and added that he believed the pressure on Vettel is now mounting, amid speculation he could either leave Ferrari voluntarily, be ousted, or quit the sport altogether.

“Sebastian has to be careful not to lose his number one status. He almost has. Charles is not making it easy for him,” explained Schumacher.

Silverstone winner Lewis Hamilton, though, defended Vettel amid his obvious slump to DPA, “He is one of the greats of this sport and will come back stronger, I’m sure of it,. That’s what great athletes do, and he’s one of them.”

Publicly, Ferrari team boss Mattia Binotto is also backing Vettel, but he also vowed to sit down with the struggling driver, “Sebastian made a mistake, which he knows well. I’m sorry for him and we will talk,” he said.

“But Sebastian is a total professional who can assess himself very well, even his mistakes. What we have to do is give him a car that he can use to his full potential, with a setup that is more to his liking. For his side, it is clear that it is most important not to make such mistakes,” Binotto added.

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WOLFF: AFTER SILVERSTONE BOTTAS A STEP CLOSER TO NEW DEAL

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At Silverstone, Valtteri Bottas took a “good step” towards a new deal to stay at Mercedes in 2020 claims his team boss Toto Wolff, even though other drivers are being linked with the plum seat alongside Lewis Hamilton.

Wolff told German television RTL that both Hamilton, the actual race winner, and Saturday’s pole sitter Bottas “deserved the victory” at the British GP.

Asked if Bottas has done enough to secure a new contract, Wolff answered: “He took a good step in that direction.

“That was his best performance so far since the beginning of the season,” he added. “He does not give up and he has what it takes to go up against Lewis in qualifying on an equal footing.”

Wolff is even happy with the way Hamilton and Bottas fought wheel-to-wheel on Sunday.

He told RTL pundit Nico Rosberg: “You trained us well from 2014 to 2016!

“Your rivalry was at a different level. Today was fair, exciting racing,” Wolff replied Rosberg, Hamilton’s former teammate.

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ANTHONY HAMILTON: IF ALONSO RETURNED IT WOULD BE FANTASTIC.

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The father of five times Formula 1 World Champion Lewis Hamilton has urged Fernando Alonso to return to Formula 1, claiming that the sport needs characters like the legendary Spaniard in the top flight.

In 2007, Hamilton made his debut for McLaren, with two-time world champion Alonso as his teammate. The pair clashed badly and Alonso left the team after that season.

But now, Hamilton’s former manager and father Anthony Hamilton thinks Alonso should return from his current ‘retirement’.

“Personally, Fernando retired too soon, although I understand why he left,” he told the Spanish broadcaster Movistar. “If he returned it would be fantastic. We need someone like him in this sport again.”

However, notwithstanding Alonso’s undoubted talent and potential interest in a comeback, a return looks unlikely. The almost 38-year-old has said he would only return with a top team.

But he has burned bridges at Ferrari, Hamilton is at Mercedes, and Dr Helmut Marko says Honda is refusing to work with the mercurial Spaniard again.

Even a return to McLaren has been ruled out, despite the fact that some insiders believed the British team had left an ‘open door’ for him.

“It is not necessary to say that,” a team spokesman is quoted as telling AS newspaper, when asked if that ‘open door’ had always been a myth.

It seems that while Zak Brown is a big supporter of Alonso’s, new boss Andreas Seidl is much more keen to look to the future, “We had to accept Fernando’s decision (to leave) and Zak decided to sign Lando and Carlos.”

Even more testing for Alonso is being ruled out by Seidl, “If Lando and Carlos are the future of this team, it makes sense that they are the ones who do the testing, which is quite limited in F1.”

It is even rumoured that McLaren made the announcement about Lando Norris and Carlos Sainz staying in 2020 so early in order to fully close the door to the Alonso era.

“We announced them so soon for next year as it demonstrates the confidence we have in them. We are happy with their speed, their spirit, their ethic and their positivity. Because of how they work with the team, they are our future and that is all I can say,” Seidl insists.

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HAMILTON: VETTEL WILL COME BACK STRONGER IN THE NEXT RACE

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Formula 1 World Championship leader Lewis Hamilton is backing Ferrari rival Sebastian Vettel to shrug off a run of poor form and mistakes after another nightmare weekend in Britain.

While Mercedes driver Hamilton took his record sixth British Grand Prix on Sunday, Vettel rear-ended Red Bull’s Max Verstappen, was handed a 10-second penalty for causing a collision and finished 16th.

The German, a four-times world champion, has been beaten in the last three races by 21-year-old team mate Charles Leclerc and is 100 points behind Hamilton in the overall standings after 10 rounds.

The speculation about the German’s future at Ferrari, the team he joined from Red Bull in 2015, and even his possible retirement from Formula One refuses to die down despite Vettel’s assurances he is committed and staying.

“I loved competing against Ferrari last year. I wish that the battle today was with the Ferraris, it’s different when you’re racing within a team,” said Hamilton after a one-two finish with teammate Valtteri Bottas at Silverstone.

“I much prefer it when you’re racing against Red Bull and Ferrari but currently that’s how it is. I absolutely believe he will rebound.

“He’s had a difficult race today but he’s a four times world champion. He will recover, he will redeem himself if he feels he needs to, and he will come back stronger in the next race. That’s what great athletes do.”

The next race is Vettel’s home German Grand Prix at Hockenheim.

Vettel and Hamilton, now heading for his sixth title, developed something of a “bromance” in 2017 and 2018 when they were the top two and fighting for the world crown.

The two champions made much of their mutual respect, defending each other in public and emphasising how much they enjoyed the rivalry.

Vettel has been a shadow of his old self this year, with Leclerc drafted in to replace 2007 champion Kimi Raikkonen as the face of the future for the sport’s oldest and most successful team.

The 21-year-old Monegasque now looks like the face of the present, taking on a leading role with more poles, more podiums and more fastest laps than the 32-year-old German and only three points behind.

Leclerc has racked up four podiums in a row, while Vettel has not featured in the top three for the past three races.

Where Vettel hit Verstappen, the Monegasque lit up the race with lap after lap of precision wheel-to-wheel battles with the Dutchman, also 21.

Vettel’s last win was in Belgium in August 2018, an anniversary fast approaching, but on current form Leclerc has looked the more likely to take Ferrari’s first victory of the season.

The German could have won in Canada after starting on pole and finishing first but made a mistake that triggered a penalty, with Hamilton winning instead. Since then, Vettel has not qualified in the top five.

“I’m sure he’s as frustrated as we are,” said Red Bull boss Christian Horner of the accident with Verstappen.

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