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...the 2021 F1 Chat Thread


coldel
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A longer term view (havent watched the DC clip but Andrew Benson's analysis is worth a read): https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/formula1/59643988

 

I suggest that there has to be much more separation between the FIA officials (e.g. the Stewards) and the F1 officials (e.g. Race Director), with a clear separation of responsibility (e.g. Safety Car - Regulations vs Operation).

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Been an F1 fan since I was able to watch it, was lucky enough to work with a few teams a while ago too. Ive got no problem with either of the big decisions from Abu Dhabi, same for Saudi as well. 

F1 a few years ago was in danger of disappearing up its own arse - there was little or no competition at the front, half the races were processions and what should have been the most exciting sport in the world was sending me to sleep every time it was on. 
Youve now got the whole world talking for most of the last 2 weeks, some proper passion and of course 2 races that have made the most exciting finish to a season I remember. 

When the margins are so small ( a lap more SC and Lewis would be champion, a lap less and it would have been Max anyway) and Merc couldnt have known how long the Safety car would last anyway why not let them race for the title? 
What would you prefer to watch, a soulless procession or a bit of actual racing action? 

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That is different to the issue at hand though, that the governing body of the sport decides it can just change the rules because at that moment it seemed the more 'exciting' way to do it. There has been tonnes of great racing this season, lets not forget that, it didn't need one lap at the end to make a dull season exciting. What happened was that they engineered an ending that wasn't sportsmanlike and ultimately decided the drivers title around a table of blokes in suits rather than on a track, to make it 'exciting'. 

 

If that's the case, then this needs to become WWE wrestling or something similar.  Put on the show first, worry about the basic principles of sport second. They have talked about reversing the grid, and all sorts of more extreme things, then lets implement that.  

 

I think what may have happened, and lets hope it didn't, was that they realised that Hamilton was going to win it AGAIN whilst the race finished under a safety car. They probably felt that would not send the right message (despite the fact Hamilton drove a better race weekend overall) and decided that the safety car MUST come in before the end of the race. They realised that to make that happen the only solution was to invent a halfway house rule change. 

Edited by coldel
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Someone close to me (with hindsight!) says that Mercedes missed a trick. As soon as the Safety Car went in, and with Perez out, they should have told Bottas to "Stop immediately, on-track, wherever you are". Yellow would come out, then safety car and race would be over.

 

I bet they did think of it but decided it would get them the result but be a PR disaster. A much more honourable team than RB.

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Yes there was certainly the option for Bottas to hit a wall or have an unknown problem and the car stop in the middle of the track. I think it seems the rumours doing the rounds are that Perez was running light so to be better able to hold Hamilton up. 

 

In actual fact the victim here isn't merc or Hamilton, its all the participants, due to a race control that put entertainment over sportsmanship. I think we all get that so many big sports are just commercial vehicles nowadays, but the sporting ethos has to remain at the heart of it. Race control deciding during a race that they can interpret one of their rules in whatever way they want to make it exciting is just fundamentally so wrong, on so many levels. 

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I also think it grates more becuase that "entertainment" value was only considered for the championship finish, it wasn't extended further down pack to the likes of Sainz (and beyond). It wasn't a decisive move by Race Control, it' was a half-arsed, knee-jerk reaction that they're now having to defend retrospectively - and without a leg to stand on, they've had to resport to "because we say so", which is even more unsatisfactory for all sides.

 

2 hours ago, coldel said:

Race control deciding during a race that they can interpret one of their rules in whatever way they want despite previously defining that exact rule themselves in a completely contradictory manner in order to defend their decision at the time to make it exciting is just fundamentally so wrong, on so many levels. 

FTFY.

 

But that pretty much sums up the whole season; objectively it's been the most entertaining season in years (or decades), but no one's ever going to defend Max's win-at-all-costs approach (or Red Bull's contest everything because we can, or Mercedes counter-contest everything because they started it) as sportsmanship!

Edited by ilogikal1
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Don't annoy the missus! https://twitter.com/susie_wolff/status/1471400042527346689?s=21

 

To be fair, she presents the issue fairly eloquently. Inventing rules on the fly is not in the spirit of the sport, or any sport. 

 

And this statement looks like the FIA are about to throw Masi under the bus https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/formula1/59675264

 

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On 14/12/2021 at 17:20, coldel said:

That is different to the issue at hand though, that the governing body of the sport decides it can just change the rules because at that moment it seemed the more 'exciting' way to do it. 

If that's the case, then this needs to become WWE wrestling or something similar.  Put on the show first, worry about the basic principles of sport second. They have talked about reversing the grid, and all sorts of more extreme things, then lets implement that.  

 


There is a slight element of interpretation to rule 48.12 in as much as the way it is written it only applies if the "LAPPED CARS MAY OVERTAKE" message has been sent; if they were only looking for "exciting" then they would have let the lapped cars between Sainz and Max pass too. I dont accept it as a change, I see it as interpretation, the same way the rules were interpreted after the first clash at Saudi. 

When so much of the rulebook is about interpretation (who is to blame for a crash, for instance) I dont think its the massive issues its been made out to be, particularly when if Latiffi hasd crashed a lap earlier all of this would have happened anyway ......... and while some are bound to disagree if they yanks hadnt taken over F1 when they did I think it would be dead in the water anyway, a bit "controversy" doesnt really make it into the petrol based version of WWE overnight :lol:

 

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Rule 48.12 does clearly state 'any cars that have been lapped..." and the stewards rejection of the Merc protest accepted that rule 48.12 had only been partially applied. What they said was rule 48.13 if interpreted a certain way could in theory give Masi the power to bring in the safety car pretty much at his own discretion, which is what he did. What he couldn't do was only instruct some cars and not others to unlap as that contravenes 48.12. 

 

What is more disturbing is that Masi clearly did that for the excitement value, but ignored plenty of safety issues. There were marshalls still on the circuit at the time stood behind armcos and not behind the actual safety barriers when the race was under a green flag on the wihtdrawal of the safety car for example. 

 

I think the bottom line is, what an utter farce, and what a disappointing way to end a really good season. Masi made a pigs ear of it, FIA initially defended him but quickly realised it was indefensible. It was a mistake, and it changed the outcome of the drivers championship. Whether Lewis or Max deserved to win is irrelevant, what's significant is that the rules were changed mid race (rules which Masi himself clarified at the Eifel 2020 grand prix specifically saying that ALL lapped cars had to be waved by) by someone who in reality, doesn't have the power to do that. 

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2 hours ago, coldel said:

Merc appeal withdrawn. Presumably based on the FIA holding their hands up and all but admitting they made a bad call and are going to address it. 

 

The statement released by Merc is very telling, the FIA must have admitted behind closed doors that they (Masi) made a mess of it.

 

I hope the steward/race control decisions get better next year because otherwise they'll lose more fans.

 

PD: As much as I wanted Lewis to win, I feel sorry for Max to have won in this way as the crappy decision does tarnish his win.

Edited by Sim
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9 hours ago, Sim said:

PD: As much as I wanted Lewis to win, I feel sorry for Max to have won in this way as the crappy decision does tarnish his win.

Och, wee Lewis got a nice badge from her Maj, nice day oot for his mum.  Poor wee Max gets some Lewis fanboy hate forever :lol:

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Funny thing is Lewis has taken it pretty well and been dignified during it all even in the immediate aftermath when you know boot on the other foot Max would have been screaming spitting blood wanting to punch people and generally throwing every toy out the pram. 

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7 hours ago, coldel said:

Max would have been screaming spitting blood wanting to punch people and generally throwing every toy out the pram. 

Have we really seen that in his character? Marko YES!  But with Max, still relatively young, he is surprisingly laid-back and saves his aggression for the track - no quarters given but does not resort to the out and out 'no-quarters given style' of what Michael Schumacher resorted to on track on occasions.

 

Max is not as dignified as Lewis in defeat but then Lewis has so much experience and knows racing is not just not how well you perform on track. For me, Max has brought an excitement back into F1 and has tamed his car to put on a show that is what top-level racing should be about, not relying on engine power alone to get the results. Rather like Alonso in his heyday.   

 

See, even Lewis agrees:

 

Edited by Ebized
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2 hours ago, Ebized said:

Have we really seen that in his character? Marko YES!  But with Max, still relatively young, he is surprisingly laid-back and saves his aggression for the track - no quarters given but does not resort to the out and out 'no-quarters given style' of what Michael Schumacher resorted to on track on occasions.

 

Max is not as dignified as Lewis in defeat but then Lewis has so much experience and knows racing is not just not how well you perform on track. For me, Max has brought an excitement back into F1 and has tamed his car to put on a show that is what top-level racing should be about, not relying on engine power alone to get the results. Rather like Alonso in his heyday.   

 

See, even Lewis agrees:

 

 

Max threatened to headbutt the next reporter who asked him about whatever the hot topic was at the time, in a press conference. 

 

I did feel a little sorry for Max 'winning' his first championship in this way but having just read his interview on the BBC (https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/formula1/59691827), i've changed my mind. Total lack of empathy, and Hamilton's first title was not anywhere near the same.

 

Verstappen pointed out that Hamilton himself had won a title in similar circumstances, when he deprived Ferrari's Felipe Massa on the last corner of the last lap of the last grand prix in 2008.

"I don't feel sorry [for him] but I can understand that it can be very painful but at the end of the day he also won a championship like that," the Dutchman said.

Edited by marzman
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17 hours ago, Ebized said:

Have we really seen that in his character? Marko YES!  But with Max, still relatively young, he is surprisingly laid-back and saves his aggression for the track - no quarters given but does not resort to the out and out 'no-quarters given style' of what Michael Schumacher resorted to on track on occasions.

 

Max is not as dignified as Lewis in defeat but then Lewis has so much experience and knows racing is not just not how well you perform on track. For me, Max has brought an excitement back into F1 and has tamed his car to put on a show that is what top-level racing should be about, not relying on engine power alone to get the results. Rather like Alonso in his heyday.   

 

 

 

Have to disagree with you on this one mate. Like Schumacher he has on a number of occasions crossed the line but in a different way. His 'divebombing' which is in effect a Max pass or both cars come together is unacceptable. So many occasions this season you can see him out of control of the car, understeering as he goes in too fast forcing the other car to take evasive action to avoid a collision.  

 

He is relatively young, but he has something like 150 grand prix under his belt, professional media training, and everything else that comes with being an elite sportsman. He isn't a kid who is still finding his feet any more. 

 

OK, F1 has to be more exciting I agree, but that needs to come from making the cars more competitive. Red Bull have a lot of resource to compete with Mercedes but have for quite a few seasons ballsed it up whether its engine choice or what not. Mercedes when they joined F1 did not have instant success they had to work at it, RB just havent done as good a job. Given that they have not done as well as they should have, its up to the FIA to even up the field. Not to the point that Williams can next season compete with Mercedes, but that the spend levels of the top teams comes down. There are plenty of elements of the race weekend that can be changed to make it more entertaining. The answer is not a rogue driver who will at some point soon T bone another car with a divebomb that the other driver cant get out the way of and we have something more significant to talk about. 

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Absolutely nothing wrong with how he overtakes in a corner, it's legal and hasn't been told it's not above board. It's not the fastest way round a corner and therefore should be easy to defend by using the cut back. Lewis left the door wide open and Max went for it, as Masi said it's called a motor race. 

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I have to agree with Col. He's demonstrated on a number of occasions the same win-at-any-cost mentality as Schumacher (and Prost before him), the difference being that there's more run off areas for other people to avoid him now. This season alone he's run people off track (more than once), parked on top of his rival and all of that AFTER he landed himself in hospital. All avoidable accidents. I'm not saying he was solely to blame in any of those instances (well... Monza) but he could have avoided all of them if he was more willing to lose the odd battle.

 

And let's not forget, it wasn't that long ago that he was regularly referred to as "Mad Max" quite unilaterally up and down the pitlane.

 

 

It's one thing to claim that he has made the racing more entertaining, and I understand why people think that, but I would much prefer to see more of the Lewis and Chico battle - they demonstrated what good, hard, clean racing should look like. More of THAT racing is exciting. More of Max making a late lunge up the inside to run whoever he's "battling" off track is barely less tedious to me than the Monaco GP.

What I will say in Max's defense, as with Prost and Schumacher before him, when he's not running people off the road, he's a good (if not fair) racer, which has made the championship infinitely more entertaining just by competing.

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21 hours ago, davey_83 said:

Absolutely nothing wrong with how he overtakes in a corner, it's legal and hasn't been told it's not above board. It's not the fastest way round a corner and therefore should be easy to defend by using the cut back. Lewis left the door wide open and Max went for it, as Masi said it's called a motor race. 

 

So why did Lewis get penalised for Silverstone?

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22 hours ago, davey_83 said:

Absolutely nothing wrong with how he overtakes in a corner, it's legal and hasn't been told it's not above board. It's not the fastest way round a corner and therefore should be easy to defend by using the cut back. Lewis left the door wide open and Max went for it, as Masi said it's called a motor race. 


The one in the last race was borderline. But those sort of things happen. It’s the other (at least 5 times this season) where he has dangerously gone into a corner and only the car in front giving up the place avoids a collision. He is out of control of the car heading into a corner with an opponent in front of him, that is unacceptable. 
 

And Masi did say that, but not about the overtake. 
 

Max has been penalised enough in his career, more so than most, because of his dangerous driving. If it’s in the rules then you wonder why the penalties keep coming … most on the grid know he is more dangerous than most anyone who says otherwise is completely blinkered. 

Edited by coldel
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