Latest F1 news in brief
- Walker set for F1 return in Germany
- Ferrari has 'proof' against Stepney
- F1 tester rejects Montoya's 'no. 1' claim
- Renault tweaks aero chief lineup
- Sutil is big Spyker 'asset' - Kolles
Walker set for F1 return in Germany
(GMM) Murray Walker's expected return to the formula one commentary booth is now set for the European grand prix, it has emerged.
The legendary personality, famous for his on-air slips or 'Murrayisms' throughout his long career on British television and radio, will replace the BBC's David Croft for a one-off at the Nurburgring.
Croft has pulled out of the event scheduled for late next month because his wife is due to have their first child.
83-year-old Walker's Radio Five Live call, however, will not be his first since retiring from full-time duty in 2001.
He has also called one-off races for Australia's Channel 10, as well as for the Grand Prix Masters series, and appeared at several grands prix as an ambassador for the Honda team.
Ferrari has 'proof' against Stepney
(GMM) A Ferrari spokesman insists that the case against British engineer Nigel Stepney will be proved.
The specialist publication Auto Motor und Sport quotes Luca Colajanni as revealing that the Maranello based team has in its possession "compelling proof" of 48-year-old Stepney's illegal behavior.
It emerges, however, that the internal and police investigation may not be about sabotage, despite reports of a mysterious 'white powder' found in the fuel tank of Felipe Massa's car prior to Monaco as well as a major incident recently in the team's wind tunnel.
In fact, the latest suggestion is that - following the widely reported case involving Toyota personnel - Ferrari suspects a new case of espionage, involving the selling of information and blueprints to rival teams.
F1 tester rejects Montoya's 'no. 1' claim
(GMM) McLaren's main tester has rubbished Juan Pablo Montoya's recent claim that the Woking based outfit have "always" had a clear number one driver.
Colombian Montoya, who drove alongside Kimi Raikkonen at McLaren in 2005 and 2006 before departing for NASCAR, said recently that rookie and current championship leader Lewis Hamilton appears to be the new favorite.
"There really always is a favorite driver on the team," Montoya, who at the weekend secured his first victory in NASCAR's premier Nextel Cup series, said.
Pedro de la Rosa, however, described as nonsense the implication that Fernando Alonso is therefore Hamilton's deputy.
"Montoya is not right if he says one driver is in a better position than the other one," McLaren's 36-year-old primary test driver told the Spanish newspaper Diario As.
De la Rosa added: "Fernando is a double world champion so of course he is not of secondary importance to anyone."
Alonso's fellow Spaniard also commented on the supposed 'civil war' between the 2007 McLaren lineup, suggesting that any rivalry is actually "helpful" to the team.
"I think it motivates everyone even more," de la Rosa said, "to push the development of the car and to progress in every area."
He added: "Also there is no ignoring the fact that ever since the (Alonso-Hamilton) fight really began, McLaren has won every race."
Renault tweaks aero chief lineup
(GMM) F1 team Renault has tweaked the lineup of its aerodynamics department, as Pat Symonds announced that the "tide is turning" following a difficult start to the 2007 season.
Renault won the world championships in 2005 and 2006 with Fernando Alonso at the wheel but this season with the R27 car fell behind the leading trio Ferrari, McLaren and even BMW-Sauber.
Engineering veteran Symonds said this week, however, that Giancarlo Fisichella and Heikki Kovalainen are now hot on BMW's heels, having pulled out of the midfield over the last few races.
"We take a lot of comfort from the fact that after a poor start to the year, we are pulling it back so rapidly," the Briton insisted.
Coinciding with the positive trend, aerodynamics chief Dino Toso has been promoted to lead Renault's new CFD centre at Enstone, with former deputy technical director James Allison moving in to head the wind tunnel.
"We believe this is the right time to make the change to ensure that our work for 2008 progresses at full speed, while the team in the wind tunnel continues to push forward with development for the remainder of the 2007 season," technical director Bob Bell said.
Sutil is big Spyker 'asset' - Kolles
(GMM) Adrian Sutil is a "big asset" for Spyker, according to the Dutch squad's team principal Colin Kolles.
Despite recently disciplining the German rookie for making too many basic errors, Kolles said 24-year-old Sutil could become formula one sensation Lewis Hamilton's biggest competition in the future.
"He is a promising young talent for us, but we have to be realistic with where we are at the moment in terms of the car," Kolles is quoted as saying by the Daily Express.
Hamilton and Sutil were paired together in formula 3 in 2005, leading that series' champion Hamilton to correctly predict that Spyker's established driver Christijan Albers would be given a "big wake-up call" by Sutil.
But Kolles admitted: "We need to provide him with a better car to compete against the best teams and drivers. Adrian is a big asset for the future.
"I believe in the future he will be a big rival on the track to Hamilton."