With a three week break until the Spanish Grand Prix, I thought it would be a good time to resurrect the News Round-up posts, as well as write some series posts about things I’ve yet to discuss on the site. Earlier today I posted about the background to Honda, their past and how they got back into Formula One. Over the next two weeks I’ll post about Renault, Force India, BMW et al. For now though, here’s the latest from the world of fast cars and controversial rules.
Drivers Call For Safety Car Rule Changes
Joining the debate over the safety car lottery rule are the drivers, headed up by Mark Webber, the GPDA director. It was announced today that FIA Rce Director Charlie Whiting will hold talks with the drivers at the Spanish race at the end of the month. The issue came to the fore after the Australian Grand Prix where some drivers lost out due to the lottery now involved when an incident requires the safety car to be deployed to slow the pack. Essentially, the FIA have instigated a rule that states the pitlane will not be immediately open in attempts to prevent drivers from speeding back to get a free pit stop. The point of the safety car is to slow the pack, not give incentive to them to drive faster. However, it does now mean that some drivers lose out unnecessarily, Heikki Kovalainen being the biggest name so far to have a possible podium taken away from him.
It potentially makes it look a bit amateurish – and you get drive-through penalties when you run out of fuel. Heikki drove a good race in Melbourne and got nailed for it.
In terms of the drivers, all of us would like to find a system where we can revert a lot closer back to how it was (before the change in 2004), but Charlie is a bit nervous about the fact that when there’s a safety car, 70 percent of the time we need to get back to the pits as quickly as possible.
As long as the safety car’s out, we just have to make sure our speed past the accident is adhered to. We can’t drive any faster than we normally do around that shunt, so that’s fine – there should be enough safety in place for that area. We just need to be careful about where the shunt and yellow flags are. After that, the track is safe enough for us to be flat out so it’s fine. Mark Webber.
BlogF1 Has A New Look, Almost
By now you may have noticed the site here looks a little different. You may have also noticed it’s a bit broken in places. The new look is pretty late, but when everything is worked out I’ll discuss the changes in a little more detail in a separate post.
Mosley Just Can’t Keep Away From The News
Max Mosley has said that should he win his battle with the News Of The World, he will donate the monies to the FIA Foundation. Unfortunately though, things haven’t got off to a good start for the embattled president as today a judge upheld the request to remove the video and photos from the NOTW website. The decision was made because the information is now out in the public domain, and keeping the video down will do little to quell the story.
I have, with some reluctance, come to the conclusion that although this material is intrusive and demeaning, and despite the fact that there is no legitimate public interest in its further publication, the granting of an order against this respondent at the present juncture would merely be a futile gesture. The dam has effectively burst. Mr Justice Eady.
It was also announced today that the FIA Senate has approved the extraordinary general meeting and scheduled it for June 3rd. It will be held and the FIA’s Paris headquarters and interestingly, today was the first time the word ‘vote’ was used. It was disclosed through an FIA statement that the Senate will hold a vote of confidence to determine Mosley’s future in the organisation.
The FIA can confirm that the members of the Senate have unanimously approved the proposal of the President of the FIA, that further to the recent press coverage relating to his private life, an Extraordinary General Assembly should be convened.
The meeting will be held on June 3, 2008, in Paris. The General Assembly will include a vote of confidence by secret ballot. FIA Statement.
And just one more quote on Mosley’s extra-curricular activities. This time from former Formula One driver Juan Pablo Montoya.
It is a laughing matter! You know, when I first heard about it, it was shocking. But then he decided to play it like nothing has happened and it’s just so hilarious.
I do have an opinion on it, but I am not going to say it, and I am glad I am not there. Juan Pablo Montoya.
Keep looking out for great new posts coming up on BlogF1 in the next couple of weeks, and of course, a fix to the little bugs in the new look.