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Discussion in 'Motorsport' started by TenEightyOne, Feb 7, 2019.
The final driver numbers for the 2019 Formula 1 season have been confirmed (source):
Racing Point is a terrible name.
Yes, although some dark side of me would enjoy the (unlikely) irony of them failing to score all season
Ferrari's isn't much better: Scuderia Ferrari Mission Winnow.
Oh, I just noticed that. They're still operating in the Borough of Marle are they?
It's silly season!
Daniel Ricciardo has an exit clause in his contract which stipulates that if either Mercedes or Ferrari come knocking on his door he can trigger a Renault exit clause. A sorta sortie, if you will. Si tu veux. That might be about to happen - Vettel is increasingly "wishing to spend time the family" and will exit Ferrari at the end of 2019. Ricciardo is, according to Top Secret Ferrari Documents, going to replace him.
You heard it here first, and possibly last.
Alonso has announced he will not drive for McLaren again (some confusion about if that just means Indy or if he's up for having a future F1 drive). He'll remain as their brand ambassador.
How long do we think Gasly has left at Red Bull?
Depends on if they can find a palatable replacement. Kvyat? Move Albon up?
Kyvat would be the most tragic thing imaginable.
Fire the torpedo!
Red Bull is too proud to admit their mistake in letting Kvyat go in the first place.
Alvin should not get the call up because, like Gasly and Kvyat, he will probably struggle joining a top team in just his second year in F1. Unless Red Bull literally shapes their entire teams around them like they did with Vettel and Verstappen
Sainz and Norris to stay with McLaren for 2020
The motorsport press have announced Gasly's absolutely-definite replacement. It's Kvyat. Or Hulkenberg. Or Albon, or Norris (!?), or absolutely nobody. They're all definite facts that you can take to the bank.
Personally I think that if Gasly underperforms (relatively to Verstappen's proof-of-pace) then the Marko-nator will start crunching contracts. If Gasly pulls it out of the bag at long last then AMRBR would be mad to risk a change.
In my opinion Kvyat was never good enough for a Red Bull promotion in the first place and other more deserving Toro Rosso drivers before him like Buemi and Alguersuari didn't get the chance; Kvyat was outclassed by Jean-Eric Vergne when they were Toro Rosso team mates and I was surprised that Kvyat got that call. Those other drivers didn't get the promotion just because there wasn't any space at the time but that's the way it goes.
I don't see what merit he has to become the next Red Bull driver apart from simply being the current senior Toro Rosso driver. In fact, Sebastian Buemi is actually contracted to Red Bull as the reserve driver so he might get that call after all.
It's a damning reflection of Red Bull's practice if, for the second time, they demote a driver they promoted too quickly.
McLaren are reporting that they won't stand in the way of Alonso's return to F1 next year. There could be a seat at Red Bull, apparently. Another SS story, of course.
Alonso should stay away. It's done.
What's done? He's clearly still a competent driver in an LMP1 car. McLaren is getting much better much quicker than before. I think he will wait for the 2020 regulations to show up and see what that does. Might come back in 2021 or 2022
Lmao he's still the strongest and most complete driver in the world. Why should he stay away if he gets an offer to drive a good car? He knows his worth and he's well aware that he isn't getting younger. He knows that he shouldn't be spending his time at the top in cars that can't win. Why not do what he's doing and go win everything he competes in. Barring the 12H Sebring, which he didn't even start, he's won every major prototype event in one year, and played a major role in all of those victories. All that's really left for him in high downforce machinery to accomplish is the Indy 500. If we see him succeed in Dakar and other off road and oval series, I would say he'll approach GOAT territory alongside the likes of Andretti.
I don't know, will Hamilton be "done" in three years? I compare the two because I really think Alonso is innately that good. Normally I'd agree that drivers shouldn't come back (imo MSC demonstrated why), but I'd love to see Alonso finally get a good seat for his definite-actual-really-this-time swansong.
Alonso did too much negative internal politicking for any of the big teams to want to take him. I don't think he wants to go to Red Bull and become number two driver in terms of both structure and pace to Verstappen. And that was always his problem. Schumacher and Hamilton were/are great at creating positive internal environments which is why they have continued success. Yes, they both had blips (The Rosberg years for Hamilton was a long blip), but it was something Alonso just couldn't get out of.
Unfortunately having outright race pace is not enough. No one can do outright race pace like Alonso did, and his race starts were fantastic, which made up for him being a relatively poor qualifier. But yes the main thing is that he thought only of himself and not of F1 as a team sport, which is why he either made poor transfer decisions or didn't have the right friends.
Vettel and Hamilton are very similar. Both are great at building teams and rapports, Hamilton is able to crank it up more during the race when he has to, but Vettel's race starts are generally better and particularly when he was at Red Bull he was great at getting himself out of DRS range and creating a buffer. However Vettel succumbs easier to pressure within the race when things go wrong, whereas Hamilton is more easily distracted by outside influences, such as when Button walked all over him when they were teammates at McLaren.
Schumacher was the king of team-building, great at playing mind games with rivals, had Alonso levels of speed, but as we all know was not above cheating to get what he wanted.
Verstappen is full of youthful energy, but thinks only in the moment rather than the long game which is why he tends to only follow the rules when it's convenient for him, and despite being around for four years still hasn't learnt all the lessons he should have, when at this stage Vettel and Hamilton had already won a championship each.
Law of diminishing returns.
What Alonso wants, needs, deserves even, is a top drive in a top team. I don't see why he should settle for any less if he did want to return to Formula One. The problem is that not only are there no vacancies in the top three teams (Mercedes, Red Bull and Ferrari) and they are unlikely to drop Hamilton, Vettel/Leclerc and Verstappen but also that even if there was, none of those teams would touch him because of his aforementioned need to be an undisputed #1 and also because at his age, none of those three would give him a 3-5 season guarantee as undisputed #1.
The only teams he could get that status at would be Racing Point, Haas or maybe Renault. Possibly Alfa if Räikkönen left. But that wouldn't be worth it; it wouldn't be good for Alonso nor the sport to see him trundling around in a a crap car halfway down the field like the last 2-3 seasons of his career was.
Although he has something to offer, he doesn't have anything to prove. He should be delighted at his reputation and being able to pick his shots in almost any motorsport series he wants.
This one is slightly more credible than the usual silly season stuff: Steiner is slightly annoyed about Silverstone and is going to fire Grosjean. Ocon rumoured to be up for an imminent Haas drive, management-depending.
Get rid of them both and promote Fittipaldi too
I don't think either of them are that bad. They just don't suit the team and vice versa. Of course, that's the main battle as a driver... but I suspect two new drivers would find themselves in the same position, maybe just crashing into each other a little less
Grosjean hasn't had enough random, sporadic insane drives recently to counteract his non-stop crashing. If he makes top five in Hockenheim that should keep him going for the rest of the season.
Or at least through the summer break
It's time for Haas to step up. They played it cool and calm the past few years, even going so far as to refusing to have a title sponsor on the car because they were unproven and just getting the hang of F1.
They have, at times, had the car. They seem to have the people. What they need is new blood drivers, and hopefully a legitimate strong sponsor.
Neither Grosjean nor Magnussen are going to set the world on fire. It's time to find some young talent, even if one of them has to bring big bucks with them. I just feel like they've been "playing it safe" for too long. I'd like to see a large US investment and maybe a young American driver (if a suitable one exists) just to get some US involvement beyond the name on the car.
Can Ocon go to Haas without totally breaking away from Mercedes?