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Sports Formula 1 Season 2019 |OT| Sons of Liberty (Media)

Makariel

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It is time, testing for the 2019 Formula 1 season is about to kick off.

What is Formula 1?
It has been described as the world's biggest Maths competition by Hannah Fry, and involves a colourful international circus of glamour and horsepower on their annual tour around the globe. The US company Liberty Media has taken over the reigns in the recent years, which also made the sport a little more accessible to newcomers.

The Teams:

Team (Country) - Power Unit
Drivers


Alfa Romeo Racing (???) - Ferrari
Kimi Räikkönen (FIN)
Antonio Giovinazzi (ITA)

Scuderia Ferrari Mission Winnow (ITA) - Ferrari
Sebastian Vettel (GER)
Charles Leclerc (MCO)

Rich Energy Haas F1 Team (USA) - Ferrari
Romain Grosjean (FRA)
Kevin Magnussen (DEN)

McLaren F1 Team (GBR) - Renault
Lando Norris (GBR)
Carlos Sainz Jr. (ESP)

Mercedes AMG Petronas Motorsport (GER) - Mercedes
Lewis Hamilton (GBR)
Valtteri Bottas (FIN)

SportPesa Racing Point F1 Team (???) - Mercedes
Sergio Perez (MEX)
Lance Stroll (CAN)

Aston Martin Red Bull Racing (AUT) - Honda
Pierre Gasly (FRA)
Max Verstappen (NED)

Renault F1 Team (FRA) - Renault
Daniel Ricciardo (AUS)
Nico Hülkenberg (GER)

Red Bull Toro Rosso Honda (ITA) - Honda
Alexander Albon (THA)
Daniil Kvyat (RUS)

ROKIT Williams Racing (GBR) - Mercedes
George Russel (GBR)
Robert Kubica (POL)


The Cars:



The Race Calendar:

2019 PRE-SEASON TESTING
Date Venue
Test 1: Feb 18 to 21 - Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, Spain
Test 2: Feb 26 to Mar 1 - Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, Spain

THE 2019 RACE CALENDAR
Date - Grand Prix - Venue
Mar 17 - Australia - Melbourne
Mar 31 - Bahrain - Sakhir
Apr 14 - China - Shanghai
Apr 28 - Azerbaijan - Baku
May 12 - Spain - Barcelona
May 26 - Monaco - Monaco
Jun 9 - Canada - Montreal
Jun 23 - France - Le Castellet
Jun 30 - Austria - Spielberg
Jul 14 - Great Britain - Silverstone
Jul 28 - Germany - Hockenheim
Aug 4 - Hungary - Budapest
Sep 1 - Belgium - Spa
Sep 8 - Italy - Monza
Sep 22 - Singapore - Singapore
Sep 29 - Russia - Sochi
Oct 13 - Japan - Suzuka
Oct 27 - Mexico - Mexico City
Nov 3 - USA - Austin
Nov 17 - Brazil - Sao Paulo
Dec 1 - Abu Dhabi - Yas Island
 
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Makariel

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The driver line-ups for the first week of testing are out:


Williams has confirmed they will be missing the first day of testing.
 

TheGreatLeon

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Thank you, Will Smith 😭

I’m really excited for this season. Seems like things might finally be getting more competitive at all levels.
 

Makariel

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I'm really curious how well Alfa Romeo will be doing. Sauber had plenty of experience but was lacking the budget, now with newfound funds and the Ferrari powertrain that might be quite an interesting combination. Has Alfa found this season's double diffuser?

The Ferrari looks very... simple... so far, I am sure the car will magically have more bits and pieces sticking on it as the testing week progresses.
 

Makariel

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Do you guys think Honda has finally sorted itself out? Can Red Bull be a threat with Honda power?
I think RBR must have seen something they like in the data they got from their sister team, otherwise they would not have risked making the jump. I'm a bit concerned looking at the RB15 though. Last year they said they will give Honda some time, will be building the car around what they can make. But the RB15 doesn't look like there's all that much space for the engine, it seems even tighter packed than Merc and Ferrari. I'm really curious to see what will happen at testing tomorrow!
 

TheGreatLeon

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Any of you get/got F1 TV before?

Thinking of dropping cable and just just getting that instead.

I really only watch sports these days.
 

Fox Mulder

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I was happy with ESPN's commercial free coverage, but was mostly waiting for F1 TV to get the kinks worked out and for an app to come to more than pc and mobile. It needs a xb1/PS4 or Apple TV app.

It's half off right now with the F1TV50 promo code.
 

Yagami_Sama

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Williams, Haas and Alfa Romeu, have some weird livery. At least for me are very weird.

I really hope that McLaren improved. The last season were a disaster. Apart from this. I am really curious to see how things will be on Ferrari, mainly if Leclerc "did not respect" Vettel and start winning races and having better results than Vettel. And the same goes to Verstappen.
 

Makariel

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I don't fully understand how f1 TV works in the UK, can I watch the races live on there or does sky still have the monopoly for all live races?

Regarding the livery, my guess is that alfa romeo still has a test livery and that the actual race cars look a bit different. I also think both the Williams and racing point look like a tube of toothpaste this year. Haas on the other hand managed to mess up the probably coolest colour combinations available, black and gold, by keeping the Haas name silver and seemingly photoshoping a peak logo onto the wing at the last minute.

edit: as expected:



The Alfa Romeo looks more in line with the previous years' livery (which I quite like).
 
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Monsterkillah

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Sebastian Vettel fastest in the morning

It is Ferrari-Red Bull-Mercedes at the top of the timesheets, as there’s been no hanging about from the Maranello team or Sebastian Vettel on what is essentially their full shakedown day with the new SF90. The German driver was fastest in the morning session of the first day of pre-season testing, which took place at the Circuit de Catalunya in ideal conditions.

Sebastian Vettel’s best lap time was 1:18.425, almost two seconds clear of the field. That lap from Seb means that Formula 1 2019 has already surpassed the quickest lap of day one of 2018 testing, which was a 1:20.179 by Daniel Ricciardo in the Red Bull, meaning that Seb’s time was already over a second quicker. And the four-time Formula One world champion was on course to complete 50 laps for the morning session, as the Ferrari SF90 has been impressing on the timesheet and in the flesh in these early stages of F1 2019.

Three hours down, here’s a full rundown of lap times and lap counts:

1) Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari, 1:18.425, 46 laps

2) Max Verstappen, Red Bull, 1:20.174, 35 laps

3) Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes, 1:20.285, 41 laps

4) Sergio Perez, Racing Point, 1:20.652, 12 laps

5) Kimi Raikkonen, Alfa Romeo, 1:20.945, 24 laps

6) Carlos Sainz, McLaren, 1:21.230, 34 laps

7) Romain Grosjean, Haas, 1:21.500, 12 laps

8) Nico Hulkenberg, Renault, 1:21.633, 41 laps

9) Daniil Kvyat, Toro Rosso, 1:22.985, 12 laps
 
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Yagami_Sama

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Things don't look good for Williams. And the same goes to McLaren, behind Alfa Romeo, and one second behind Mercedes. And so far Honda Engines did not blow, right ?
 

Fox Mulder

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Williams needs testing time the most for their shitbox and they have a new driver lineup. Missing out looks bad. Even running last year's car at testing would be real seat time for their drivers at least.
 

Makariel

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First day:

1 Vettel (Ferrari), 1m18.161s (169 laps)
2 Sainz (McLaren), 1m18.558s (119)
3 Grosjean (Haas), 1m19.159s (65)
4 Verstappen (Red Bull), 1m19.426s (128)
5 Raikkonen (Alfa Romeo), 1m19.462s (114)
6 Kvyat (Toro Rosso), 1m19.464s (77)
7 Perez (Racing Point), 1m19.944s (30)
8 Bottas (Mercedes), 1m20.127s (69)
9 Hamilton (Mercedes, 1m20.135s (81)
10 Hulkenberg (Renault), 1m20.980s (65)
11 Ricciardo (Renault), 1m20.983s (44)

The Honda engines worked, the Alfa Romeo looks promising, the McLaren is able to drive around corners, Williams might not show up until Wednesday. I would assume that Mercedes and Renault have more to show and are just sandbagging.

New cars in action:


Except the Williams, of course :p
 
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TheGreatLeon

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McLaren with that 1:18....

impressive.

I think we're going to be in for some good racing this season. CAN. NOT. WAIT.
 

TheGreatLeon

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I just purchased the F1 TV Access package and it literally won't let me play anything in the app. It just tells me I need to upgrade to "premium" which is lnot even an option (Access or Pro). :messenger_face_steam::messenger_grinning_squinting:

I should definitely have access to the archives but it says I need to upgrade to watch that, too. I'm curious what this app thinks I paid for exactly? Does it think this was a handout?

My god, what a sad first impression.
 
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Makariel

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That's pretty bad. Can you get a refund? I have tried to find out what the f1 TV actually offers in the UK (since the service seems to differ a lot from region to region), but it seems impossible to get any sensible information on their website, they just want you to subscribe to get a cat in a bag.
 

Makariel

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Second day of testing. Still no sign of Williams.

Leclerc the first driver to clock in over 100 laps today...
Leclerc 102
Gasly 84
Norris 81
Albon 76
Hamilton 74
Giovinazzi 62
Stroll 51
Magnussen 40
Ricciardo 28
Bottas 27
Hulkenberg 23

...and so far comfortably the fastest time, being the only driver faster than 1:19. Mercedes still sandbagging, Ricciardo in the Renault managed to loose parts of his rear wing.

Gasly crashed the RB with one hour to go!

Also, Williams is intending to finally join the party tomorrow:
https://www.autosport.com/f1/news/141625/delayed-williams-to-arrive-at-track-in-early-hours
 
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Scopa

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I’m still disappointed that Ricciardo went to Renault. I want to see him competitive. Hopefully I will be surprised.
 

Makariel

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Day 3 of testing. The Wiliams has finally arrived, looks like Russel is getting his seat fitted. McLaren did some changes overnight, still not out on track today.

I’m still disappointed that Ricciardo went to Renault. I want to see him competitive. Hopefully I will be surprised.
I'm really curious if McLaren is getting their shit together and is faster than the Renault this year. If* the Honda works fine Ricciardo will be even worse off.

* there are rumours floating around that RBR has noticed some unusual vibration and can't run the engine at 100% right now.
 

Yagami_Sama

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Honda, vibrations and the saving engine power, was the standard in the past. And even if this is true, I think that Redbull will try to hide any engine related problem, in order to avoid creating a bad environment like it was with McLaren.

But, if on the first race, both Redbull performs pretty bad and or DNF due to the engines issues, will be very bad for them.
 

Mohonky

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Do you guys think Honda has finally sorted itself out? Can Red Bull be a threat with Honda power?
Well lets see......the team that did all their work on a test bench over the off season and totally forgot to take into consideration that in the back of the car would be subject to vibration and shock then consequently had to scramble to fix it pre-season when they were supplying McLaren??

Honestly, this is what, their 4 or 5th year as an engine supplier now? I doubt they'll be any better than Renault to be honest and some of that will be RBR's fault because as always they demand their supplier provide power and reliability while simultaneously telling them they have to fit it into a package they is contrary to such an engine design with a car with impossibly slim hips.

It's all on them now anyway, RBR have burnt their Renault bridges and Ferrari nor Merc would ever be interested in dealing with RBR so they better hope that Honda can do something......
 

hariseldon

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Last year was the first season I didn't watch most of the races live. F1 has lost me somewhat, due to the stale racing. It needs fixing, and that is mostly going to require aero changes to simplify the wings and moving away from the god-awful Pirelli rubber. Consider that in the past (let's say late 80s and early 90s) cars could follow each other for a long time without chewing through the tyres, even tyres not intended to last the whole race. The simple wings both looked wonderful and didn't create the god-awful racing we see today.
The second thing that needs fixing is the constant management of the cars. This is a product of hybrid engines I suspect (I know ICE took some management but not on the same level), and if it's necessary to lose a manufacturer or two to get internal combustion engines then so be it. There are companies out there that can make a good racing V8 and bring some sound back (I'd like V12 but that's not going to happen). The sport needs a massive overhaul because right now it lacks an identity.
 

Makariel

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Last year was the first season I didn't watch most of the races live. F1 has lost me somewhat, due to the stale racing.
I don't think 2018 was stale compared to 2014-2017, last year was the best in a while. It's easy to forget just how many dull races the 1980ies and 90ies had. I still remember the 1988 season, where the only question really was which McLaren wins, Senna or Prost.

Consider that in the past (let's say late 80s and early 90s) cars could follow each other for a long time without chewing through the tyres, even tyres not intended to last the whole race.
That was Ecclestones bright idea to have mandatory pit stops and at least 2 different tyre compounds per race. Pirelli could easily make tyres that last the whole race.

The second thing that needs fixing is the constant management of the cars. This is a product of hybrid engines I suspect (I know ICE took some management but not on the same level), and if it's necessary to lose a manufacturer or two to get internal combustion engines then so be it.
If you lose two manufacturers you might as well keep watching Indycar. I am against mandating ICE, I'm for opening up the series and allow whatever works best/creates the fastest car.
 

TheGreatLeon

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Yeah, last year was the best in a while and hopefully the changes brought in this year will improve it more as well.

I just wonder what the future of the series is as carmakers move away from combustion and toward electric....

I’ll miss the engine noise. 😢
 

Fox Mulder

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The future is electric, it just is. That can still make for great racing and engineering. F1 hasn't even said enough about how this era of cars are the fastest ever with smaller engines that must last like 7 races.

Last year was the best of this era with Ferrari showing up, even if the title was over by Mexico. Mercedes just might win every title from 2014 to the new 2021 regulations though.
 
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Looking forward to the new Season. Actually the most excited I have been for a long time ! Especially the first races are always nice when you are not only focused on the two top contenders.
I am genuinely hoping for some surprises in 2019.

it is quite funny that I love Formula 1 so much nowadays considering I thought it was boring 5 years~ ago and now it is my most anticipated sport
 

TheGreatLeon

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The future is electric, it just is. That can still make for great racing and engineering. F1 hasn't even said enough about how this era of cars are the fastest ever with smaller engines that must last like 7 races.

Last year was the best of this era with Ferrari showing up, even if the title was over by Mexico. Mercedes just might win every title from 2014 to the new 2021 regulations though.
The last couple of years Mercedes has been both luckier than Ferrari and smarter.

For the first half of the season last year, I thought the Ferrari was the superior car but in the back half of the season, the Mercedes seemed to be clearly faster.

I won't be surprised if the Ferrari is faster this season but Mercedes won atleast 2 or 3 races last season purely by having the superior in-race strategy.
 

hariseldon

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I don't think 2018 was stale compared to 2014-2017, last year was the best in a while. It's easy to forget just how many dull races the 1980ies and 90ies had. I still remember the 1988 season, where the only question really was which McLaren wins, Senna or Prost.

That was Ecclestones bright idea to have mandatory pit stops and at least 2 different tyre compounds per race. Pirelli could easily make tyres that last the whole race.

If you lose two manufacturers you might as well keep watching Indycar. I am against mandating ICE, I'm for opening up the series and allow whatever works best/creates the fastest car.
Tbh it was a culmination of the sport just not being much of a sport for a few years. You seem to be assuming that my issue is with single-team dominance but that's simply not the case. My issue is that nobody battles on track anymore. From what I did see of last season that's not changed. Overtakes on tyre strategy, overtakes with DRS (that it exists is surely proof that there's a problem) but very little in the way of 10 lap battles. I want to see drivers going at it, fighting hard.

Re the tyres, Pirelli may well be able to make a tyre that lasts the whole race but it seems to me that their issues go further than that. For starters, their tyres seem to be very bad at handling following another car, they degrade too easily from that, and yet surely we want to incentivise that kind of driving, not punish it. The problem is that Pirelli tyres are not destroyed by wear rate but by temperature, they simply don't cope well with a wide range of temperatures, and resolving that flaw would go a decent way to improving the racing. As it is, I don't think Pirelli are capable.

Indycar actually has some excellent racing. They have started to go down the F1 route having moved away from the standardised body kits they previously ran, which has hurt the racing a bit, but it's still better than F1 on comparable tracks (oval racing is a whole different thing - 200mph chess and honestly really exciting if you take the time to get into it). It helps that America has some wonderful tracks which wouldn't be allowed in F1, such as the utterly wonderful Long Beach, Road America, Mid-Ohio and Laguna Seca. F1 has such sterile tracks with huge run-off areas where mistakes simply aren't punished, and where fans are too far from the action. I get the need for safety but my feeling is that the sport has lost something because of it.

The problem is that F1 is ruled by the manufacturers. It's about them, not the drivers, where in other motorsport this is less true. The driver's championship has always been a large part about who had the best car but within that you would still see heroics such as Michael Schumacher in Barcelona 94 (stuck in 5th gear, still managed to finish 2nd). That doesn't happen anymore - drivers can't work around issues because the engines are so fragile and they need to last 7 races so the team talks them through pressing 50 switches or they retire the car to save engine mileage.

One more thing.. in what other sport are the participants not allowed to practice? Back in the day teams could test whenever they wanted, which gave up and coming drivers a chance to get a feel for the car, and for teams to improve things in the middle of the season. The lack of testing does an excellent job of enforcing the status quo.

Finally.. If you've ever driven a racing car in anger you'll understand the joy in hearing an ICE singing its little heart out, the sheer intensity of the sound. I've had that pleasure at Silverstone and Donington and I can honestly tell you it's an utterly awe-inspiring thing. Losing any part of that loses a part of the experience, taking away the visceral pleasure of driving, leaving a safe, sterile, flat, disconnected, coddled, technological mess.
 

Scopa

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Tbh it was a culmination of the sport just not being much of a sport for a few years. You seem to be assuming that my issue is with single-team dominance but that's simply not the case. My issue is that nobody battles on track anymore. From what I did see of last season that's not changed. Overtakes on tyre strategy, overtakes with DRS (that it exists is surely proof that there's a problem) but very little in the way of 10 lap battles. I want to see drivers going at it, fighting hard.

Re the tyres, Pirelli may well be able to make a tyre that lasts the whole race but it seems to me that their issues go further than that. For starters, their tyres seem to be very bad at handling following another car, they degrade too easily from that, and yet surely we want to incentivise that kind of driving, not punish it. The problem is that Pirelli tyres are not destroyed by wear rate but by temperature, they simply don't cope well with a wide range of temperatures, and resolving that flaw would go a decent way to improving the racing. As it is, I don't think Pirelli are capable.

Indycar actually has some excellent racing. They have started to go down the F1 route having moved away from the standardised body kits they previously ran, which has hurt the racing a bit, but it's still better than F1 on comparable tracks (oval racing is a whole different thing - 200mph chess and honestly really exciting if you take the time to get into it). It helps that America has some wonderful tracks which wouldn't be allowed in F1, such as the utterly wonderful Long Beach, Road America, Mid-Ohio and Laguna Seca. F1 has such sterile tracks with huge run-off areas where mistakes simply aren't punished, and where fans are too far from the action. I get the need for safety but my feeling is that the sport has lost something because of it.

The problem is that F1 is ruled by the manufacturers. It's about them, not the drivers, where in other motorsport this is less true. The driver's championship has always been a large part about who had the best car but within that you would still see heroics such as Michael Schumacher in Barcelona 94 (stuck in 5th gear, still managed to finish 2nd). That doesn't happen anymore - drivers can't work around issues because the engines are so fragile and they need to last 7 races so the team talks them through pressing 50 switches or they retire the car to save engine mileage.

One more thing.. in what other sport are the participants not allowed to practice? Back in the day teams could test whenever they wanted, which gave up and coming drivers a chance to get a feel for the car, and for teams to improve things in the middle of the season. The lack of testing does an excellent job of enforcing the status quo.

Finally.. If you've ever driven a racing car in anger you'll understand the joy in hearing an ICE singing its little heart out, the sheer intensity of the sound. I've had that pleasure at Silverstone and Donington and I can honestly tell you it's an utterly awe-inspiring thing. Losing any part of that loses a part of the experience, taking away the visceral pleasure of driving, leaving a safe, sterile, flat, disconnected, coddled, technological mess.
Sounds like your problems lie with who has been running the sport. The lack of overtaking is not the teams or the tyre manufacturer’s fault, but the management. Stupid regulations brought us to where we are at.
 

Makariel

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You seem to be assuming that my issue is with single-team dominance but that's simply not the case. My issue is that nobody battles on track anymore.
I think I got your point, but my point still stands that Formula 1 was never a series where "hard battles" with closely following cars were the norm. Looking at older races, there were a few of these but the majority of classic F1 races are not more exciting than today. Rarely that the top 10 was even on the same lap by the end of the race. I also think that Formula 1 does definitely have it's own identity, as being the series with the fastest cars, engineering marginal improvements and playground of the high society, a veritable travelling circus. If you want close racing, there are tons of racing series that do that, there is no reason why F1 needs to become more "than the others" in order to continue. I think it is fairly successful just because it is not "like the others". The reality is that many people tune into F1 for different reasons, the glitz & glamour, the drama, the engineering, the controveries, the racing strategies and related maths, etc. and the pure racing aspect is just one of these elements. I don't think it's a surprise that spec series that offer the arguably closest racing don't attact many viewers, while F1 despite a recent slump still ranges around hundred millions of viewers.

From what I did see of last season that's not changed. Overtakes on tyre strategy, overtakes with DRS (that it exists is surely proof that there's a problem) but very little in the way of 10 lap battles. I want to see drivers going at it, fighting hard.


And if that was somehow not enough, you can still watch any other number of racing series where continuous battles for the lead are more common. The most recent 12 hours of Bathurst had the race coming down to the last few minutes, with all to play for in the last 20 minutes of the race for at least half a dozen of teams.

F1 has such sterile tracks with huge run-off areas where mistakes simply aren't punished, and where fans are too far from the action.
Singapore? Monaco? Baku?

The driver's championship has always been a large part about who had the best car but within that you would still see heroics such as Michael Schumacher in Barcelona 94 (stuck in 5th gear, still managed to finish 2nd). That doesn't happen anymore - drivers can't work around issues because the engines are so fragile and they need to last 7 races so the team talks them through pressing 50 switches or they retire the car to save engine mileage.
So when Ricciardo was nursing his car home in first place last year in Monaco after the engine started to give up early on, does not classify as "heroic"?

One more thing.. in what other sport are the participants not allowed to practice? Back in the day teams could test whenever they wanted, which gave up and coming drivers a chance to get a feel for the car, and for teams to improve things in the middle of the season. The lack of testing does an excellent job of enforcing the status quo.
Yeah agreed, the limitations on testing are silly. Even if they limit on-track testing on cost grounds, whatever, they should at least let them freely use CFD and wind tunnels, but even that is restricted.
 

Makariel

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After the first week of testing...
https://www.autosport.com/f1/news/141688/renault-fastest-but-ferrari-favourite-after-test

Nico Hulkenberg set the fastest time in the Renault, but that doesn't mean very much. All top teams were sandbagging to varying degrees. What is important is the mileage they got:

Pos Team Laps - Miles
1. Mercedes 610 - 1764
2. Ferrari 598 - 1729
3. Alfa Romeo 507- 1466
4. Toro Rosso 482 - 1394
5. Red Bull 475 - 1374
6. McLaren 445 - 1287
7. Renault 433 - 1252
8. Haas 384 - 1111
9. Racing Point 248 - 717
10. Williams 88 - 254

Mercedes has been quietly done the largest amounts of laps, with Hamilton being also the driver clocking the most laps in total, followed by Vettel, Bottas, Leclerc, Albon and Giovinazzi.

Notably low count for Williams, who missed half of the week, and also Racing Point, who didn't quite get as much running as they should. Renault and McLaren solid, but Renault power units have way less miles in total than Mercedes, Ferrari and even Honda powered cars.

Honda didn't break down. This is a little surprising, considering the past few years, and both teams running Honda engines were rather reliable, despite the apparently very compact engine (just look at the back of that Red Bull!).

Edit: in other news, Netflix dropped a trailer for a F1 documentary:

 
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Yagami_Sama

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I am really curious to know if Mercedes is hiding something or if they "are in trouble" this season. Also good to see McLaren with so many laps and no major visible major problems on their car. Maybe they finally managed to have a good and base and are might have a start this season.
 

Mohonky

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I am really curious to know if Mercedes is hiding something or if they "are in trouble" this season. Also good to see McLaren with so many laps and no major visible major problems on their car. Maybe they finally managed to have a good and base and are might have a start this season.
Yeh its so hard to tell with Merc, every year they just punch out lap after lap after lap. They dont seem overly concerned.

Everyone is picking Ferrari is the team to beat but we said the same thing for 2 years before this one also. Granted last year they probably had the most consistently fast car everywhere so its entirely possible. As a Hamilton fan I always hope Merc have something hidden away.

On Honda, there were rumours the engines were vibrating quite a bit, Marko and Horner denied it but that could just be keeping a good face and trying not to start off where McLaren left off with Honda.

Be interesting to see Stroll this year, cant hide behind a Williams car story. He does occasionally drove exceptionally well, so we'll see.

As to Williams, man its sad to see the state they are in
 

Makariel

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Testing continues in Barcelona, and there are already some noticeable differences to the week 1 cars...



Mercedes arrived with essentially a different car for week two. Not a single aero part that wasn't changed in some way. The new nose looks super weird.
 
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Jun 8, 2004
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Mercedes sandbagged like a fucking boss.. they brought a frikin dummy car to the first test to minimize any copying attempts.. I don't think anyone took sandbagging to that level. Intentionally at least
 

Mohonky

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Im not sure about Merc sand bagging a whole car, if the point of throwing others off with a whole different design direction, then they would have had to have shown speed with their firsr design to give the illusion they were on to something, but theh didnt.

I suspect its more the case they are testing 2 different design philosophies.
 

Makariel

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I'm not sure what Mercedes is doing tbh, there is very limited testing as it is (8 days for the entire year!) and wasting half of that on a car that you don't actually plan to use sounds very odd to me. There's a difference between sandbagging and bad strategy. But we will see what Mercedes F1 brings this year, either:



or:

 

Makariel

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Looks like this year might break all old lap records once again:



We're pretty close to last years pole time, and it's not even the last day of testing!