The upcoming British Grand Prix is one that will be filling Lance Stroll and Sebastian Vettel with hope, as the Aston Martin F1 Team are set to “substantially upgrade” the AMR22 this weekend at Silverstone.
The famous team in racing green are installing their second large upgrade package of the season, at their home race.
Many other teams are also set to introduce significant upgrades at Silverstone, as the season edges towards the halfway point.
It’s been a challenging start to the year for Aston Martin; the British side currently sit 8th in the Constructors’ standings, however, they are already falling well behind the majority of the midfield.
Aston Martin after nine rounds have just 16 points, whereas the likes of Alfa Romeo in 6th already have 51.
The British team’s closest target in the standings is currently AlphaTauri, with the Italian outfit on 27 points in 7th place.
Both Stroll and Vettel will also be looking over their shoulder, with the Haas F1 Team just a sole point behind them in 9th.
The Canadian and German driver have at times found the going tough in 2022, with the AMR22 appearing to be one of the worst cars on the grid.
Nevertheless, Stroll scored a single point at the recent Canadian Grand Prix; Vettel also managed to score points most recently in Azerbaijan.
The team will be hoping that their new upgrades will result in more consistent points finishes, with the end of season prize fund being arguably more important than ever before this season.
The ongoing cost of living crisis has seen teams put under huge financial pressure, meaning that finishing as high up in the standings as possible is absolutely vital.
Aston Martin team principal Mike Krack, is hopeful that this weekend’s upgrades will see his team rise through the ranks, as he highlighted the importance of where the team need to get to.
“We bring steps all the time, but major ones are a bit differently [controlled],” began Krack whilst talking to The Race.
“For Silverstone, we will have another substantial update.
“But I think most of the teams will, so it’s also a matter of how much and how effective it will be. But we’re quite confident we made a good step.
“And the next step will also be good. So the target has to be to really get in front of this midfield so you can start from the points [top ten].
“I mean, you have to look at how tight the midfield is. You don’t need a big step to make a lot of positions,” Krack pointed out.
“This was a little bit different in the past. You had really your positions and there was a big difference between cars…
“We have to get at the front of this group, and then it is easier to fight for points because we cannot end a year where we started it,” concluded the Aston Martin boss.
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After a string of reliability issues, Ferrari have found themselves in “nothing to lose” territory, but potentially at threat of losing second in the Constructors’ Standing.
After going strong in the start of the season, it looked like 2022 would finally be the year that Ferrari reclaimed the Constructors’ crown for the first-time since 2008, and that Charles Leclerc would become a World Champion.
However, after two engine failures in the last four races, both Ferrari and Leclerc have seen their title chances go up in smoke.
A mix of reliability and strategic errors, has seen both Max Verstappen and Red Bull Racing build a sizeable gap in both championships.
It leaves Ferrari in the difficult position of having to decide whether to defend 2nd from the Mercedes F1 Team, or throw everything at it to claw back Red Bull.
2016 World Champion Nico Rosberg firmly believes that Ferrari need to be looking forward rather than backwards.
“It’s kind of nothing to lose anymore,” the German said.
“So just go for it and then see what can be maximised. Of course they need to get on top of their reliability issues but the pressure is kind of off a little bit now.
“I mean, they were huge favourites after the first couple of races but now they’re so far behind. So you have nothing to lose. Go for it. Big push and let’s see what they can do.”
It was initially Red Bull who had the reliability problems at the start of the season, however, despite Sergio Pérez’ retirement in Canada, this pendulum has most certainly swung.
Whilst appearing on Any Driven Monday, Rosberg was asked which team he would rather be driving for currently.
“Definitely Red Bull,” the ex-Mercedes driver said.
“Maybe it’s not actually such an easy question, but feeling wise I do say Red Bull because recently it’s been the Ferrari not the Red Bull [that is breaking down], they’ve kind of got on top of their things,” said Rosberg.
Whilst on the show, the 37-year-old was negative towards Carlos Sainz.
Rosberg doesn’t see championship winning potential in the Spaniard, who has struggled on a number of occasions this season.
It’s left Leclerc at the disposal of both Red Bull drivers at times, with both Verstappen and Pérez performing strongly.
Sainz will need to improve should Ferrari win the Constructors’, with the Spanish driver still yet to win a race in Formula 1.
Rosberg outlined where Sainz needs to improve, with Leclerc “outdriving him” at every GP in 2022.
“Sainz has got it in him to be a good, decent driver within Ferrari,” Rosberg continued.
“But at the moment he has not got it in him to be a World Champion.
“Because on performance, [Charles] Leclerc has been outdriving him every single race this year.
“So there he still needs to find quite a bit of progress to be on level terms with Leclerc, he is still somewhat away from there.
“That comes as quite a surprise after last year but of course the car is completely different so maybe it takes him more time to get on top of things,” concluded the German.
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AlphaTauri team principal Franz Tost is not inclined to show a lot of sympathy for drivers who are complaining about the “porpoising” and bouncing issues due to the new technical regulations.
Ground effect aerodynamics have been reintroduced this season in a bid to help drivers follow more closely and, ultimately, improve the racing spectacle.
The new aero concept means that the chassis design is radically different compared with before, and the cars are also running a lot lower to the ground – the added load on the suspension means that it has to be stiffer to deal with it.
This stiffness caused bouncing in and of itself and, couple that with turbulence from the chassis, it makes for a very uncomfortable experience.
Sir Lewis Hamilton struggled to get out of his car after the Azerbaijan Grand Prix, and multiple drivers have been outspoken about the long-term health effects the abrasion with the track surface can have.
The FIA therefore introduced a technical directive at the Canadian Grand Prix designed to eradicate the issue and make for a safer experience for the drivers.
They have implemented a metric for how much force the cars are being subjected to and they will use the data collected in Montreal to set a limit for oscillating movement.
Any team that exceeds this will be asked to raise the ride height of their car, but Tost is unsure why there is such a big surprise in the discomfort the drivers are going through, given the anticipation that the new machines would be less comfortable than the previous ones.
“When this new regulation was created, it was clear from the very beginning onwards that these cars will not be easy to drive,” he said.
“Why? Because this floor, with a Venturi principle, makes it necessary that the cars are set up quite stiff; that the cars are quite close to the surface, and that the front and rear ride-height is quite low.
“At least, you will gain a lot of performance if the car’s setup as low as possible, and as hard as possible.
“In addition to this, you have the 18-inch tyres, therefore it is clear that there is less damping coming from the tyres, and that the cars are not any more so comfortable to drive as it was in the past. Now, the drivers complain about it.
“On one hand, I can understand – it’s not so easy for them. On the other hand, this is a Formula 1 car.
“I remember back when the wing cars were out there, there was a driver coming to me on Sunday evening and said ‘tomorrow I have to go to the dentist because I lose my fillings because the cars are so hard to drive.’ It’s nothing new.”
The Austrian indicated that anyone struggling physically with the new cars should adjust their training to better prepare themselves for the bumps.
“Now, there are two things. First of all, the drivers must do more training for the neck muscles and for the gluteus maximus, then this helps, for sure,” added Tost.
Wolff fires accusation at rival teams as he addresses ‘political manoeuvring’ https://t.co/QRC7tVvOkP— Formula1News.co.uk (@Formula1newsUK) June 28, 2022
“The FIA is coming now with this new Technical Directive, which, of course, will help to find out how big are the forces.
“And then, when they create these metrics, then maybe we can find a way to reduce the bouncing, and the forces which are coming to the drivers.
“How much this can be controlled, I don’t know yet. We, from Scuderia AlphaTauri will support the FIA.
“We will give them the data and then we will see what will be the result.
“But this is a Formula 1 car, this is not a Rolls Royce, and drivers should be aware of this.
“And if the cars are too stiff, or it’s too difficult for them, maybe they should stay at home, in the living room, sit in the chair, and then they can do the races on TV or wherever. I don’t know.”
Former F1 driver and 13-time race winner David Coulthard has also previously told any drivers moaning about their hardships in the cockpit to “get on with it,” indicating that there would be plenty of up-and-coming racers ready to replace them if they do not want to race.
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Both F1 and the FIA issued statements rebuking Piquet’s comments, while Hamilton said it was “time for action” to change “archaic mindsets” within the sport.
Piquet is yet to issue any public ...Keep reading
Three-time world champion Nelson Piquet could find himself banned from the Formula 1 paddock unless he issues a public apology to Sir Lewis Hamilton.
Several months ago, Piquet was analysing a collision between Hamilton and Red Bull’s Max Verstappen when he appeared to use a racial slur while talking about the seven-time champion.
Those comments have now resurfaced, and several members of the Formula 1 community, including the majority of the teams and F1 itself, have expressed their support for Hamilton, who called for tangible action to be taken against those who express discriminatory behaviour.
“It’s more than language. These archaic mindsets need to change and have no place in our sport,” he tweeted.
“I’ve been surrounded by these attitudes and targeted my whole life. There has been plenty of time to learn. Time has come for action.”
Since then, George Russell, Charles Leclerc, Daniel Ricciardo, Esteban Ocon, Mick Schumacher and Zhou Guanyu have shown their support for the 37-year-old.
“Huge respect to LH. He has done more for the sport than any driver in history, not just on track but off it,” tweeted Russell.
“The fact that he and so many others are STILL having to deal with this behaviour is unacceptable. We all need to stand together against discrimination of any kind.”
“Knowing Lewis since I arrived in Formula 1, he has always been kind and respectful to me and everyone that he meets,” Leclerc added on his Instagram story.
“Those values should be the standard towards anybody around the world.
“The comments made towards Lewis should not be tolerated, and we should continue to push for a more diverse and inclusive sport.
“We need to remove discriminatory behaviour and racist language in any form from not just our sport but from our society as well.”
“Discrimination and racism has no place in the sport or our society,” stated Ricciardo.
“Those who still choose to spread hate and use those words are no friends of mine.
“I want to acknowledge Lewis and all of the work he has done both on and off the track to not only spread messages of equality but combat hate.
“I’ve never dealt with any racially motivated actions, but he has for his entire life. Yet each time his response to the hate is motivated by maturity, positivity and educating the world on how we should act.
“I stand with him and will do whatever I can to follow and support.”
Schumacher shared a picture of Hamilton that was posted by the Mercedes account, captioning it “We stand with you Lewis Hamilton.”
Understand that Nelson Piquet’s access to the #F1 paddock could be revoked if he doesn’t issue a public apology to Lewis Hamilton.— Philip Duncan (@PhilDuncanF1) June 28, 2022
Alpine driver Ocon would then also show his support for the 103-time race winner.
“All racist or discriminatory language has absolutely no part in out sport and our society. Enough is enough,” he said.
“I’ve worked and spent time with Lewis over the years and know the kind of person he is.
“Always genuine and respectful with everyone around him. He has done so much for F1, on and off track, and we are proud to have him at the forefront of our fight for further diversity and inclusion in motorsport.
“I stand with Lewis and his continued efforts to make the sport we love a better place for all.”
“I join Lewis and the motorsport community in standing against any form of racism, discrimination and prejudice,” said Zhou.
F1 journalist Philip Duncan now reports that Piquet could have his permanent paddock access denied should he fail to offer a full apology to Hamilton.
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With McLaren having already admitted that it is on course to break the current ...Keep reading
Haas team principal Guenther Steiner has indicated that Formula 1 could learn a thing or two from the American spending model amid the ongoing conversation as to whether drivers’ salaries should be capped.
In the NFL, for example, the total spend on player salaries and bonuses for each team was set at $238.2 million in 2020, and this is for a squad stacked with immense talent.
Sir Lewis Hamilton earns $40 million with Mercedes, while Max Verstappen’s new contract with Red Bull, which begins in 2024, is expected to see him earn $50 million a year.
In general, the drivers have disagreed that there should be a limit on how much they are paid, but Steiner warns that team bosses will no longer be willing to fork out on expensive drivers if their salaries continue to rise.
“I think there’s not a lot more to be added here,” he said ahead of the Canadian Grand Prix weekend.
“I think where we can learn lessons from is American big league sports. There is a lot going on there and we just need to see how it is done there and learn from it.
“We don’t have to copy it but there is a lot being done and just looking at it for mid to long-term, how this can be resolved.
“So, this lack of parity between the team budget and the drivers’ budget is not so big anymore but obviously you will have always the problem that who is going to invest in a race car driver if he cannot make the money back. It’s very difficult to sort.”
In the English Rugby Premiership, teams are allowed to spend £5 million a year on players, but this does not extend to all senior personnel at the club – the Italian believes it would have to in the pinnacle of motorsport.
“By the way, one more point,” added Steiner.
“We shouldn’t [only] be including the top earners in the team, I think in order to make it sustainable, everyone should be covered by the cost cap and it’s [not] only the drivers but it’s also the team principals and the senior management.”June 26, 2022
To elaborate on the drivers that disagree with the idea, Max Verstappen described the proposed cap as “completely wrong.”
“I think no one really knows where it is going to go but from my side, it’s completely wrong,” he said.
“I think at the moment, F1 is becoming more and more popular and everyone is making more and more money, including the teams and FOM [Formula One Management].
“Everyone is benefitting, so why should the drivers, with their IP rights and everything, be capped?
“We actually bring the show and put our lives at risk, because we do, eventually. So for me, it’s completely wrong.”
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Masi did get it wrong with title-deciding Abu Dhabi GP restart, Horner admits | 2021 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix
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Ricciardo shared the story from his Instagram account on Monday night, accompanied with a happy face emoji. His exact involvement in the project currently remains unclear.
The initial report claims the ...Keep reading
Some outfits, like Ferrari and McLaren, have already admitted in public that they are on course to break the cap this season because costs have jumped so much – so are in desperate need of a compromise deal being put in place to ...Keep reading
Now operating with a “much more collaborative” relationship with F1’s owners, the circuit’s managing director Stuart Pringle is now “prepared to join hands and walk down the aisle for a ...Keep reading