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DATE News (chronologically)
05/09/08
f1
Latest F1 news in brief
  • New Safety Car rule could be in place for Monaco
  • Renault must confirm Barca pace - Alonso
  • Schu's son called 'Mika' in Germany
  • A quiet, slippery start in Turkey

New Safety Car rule could be in place for Monaco
(GMM)  A proposal to change the safety car rules could be in place in time for the Monaco grand prix in two weeks.

BMW motor sport director Mario Theissen in Istanbul admitted that his preferred solution would be to electronically limit the speed of cars upon deployment of the safety car, to prevent drivers from racing at high speed into the pits.

"This is not going to happen within the next few races," Theissen said.

The current rule, where the pitlane is simply closed after the deployment of the SC, is being criticized for unfairly punishing drivers who are out of fuel.

For now, FIA race director Charlie Whiting has proposed to simply impose a minimum time for caution sectors; a solution similar to the speed restrictions already in place for the formation laps prior to a grand prix, and the closing stages of 'Q3'.

"Charlie's proposal I think could be implemented immediately," Theissen explained.  "That would be better than the present situation."

The German said the hoped the new rule will be in place in Monaco.

"Yes, because there, the risk of a safety car is the highest," he said.

The issue was due to be discussed in the team managers' meeting here at Istanbul.

Renault must confirm Barca pace - Alonso
(GMM)  Fernando Alonso in Istanbul insisted that Renault's objective for the Turkish grand prix is to "confirm the improvement" to the R28 as shown at the last race.

After a disappointing start to the 2008 season, the former double world champion only narrowly missed taking pole position - albeit with the help of a light fuel load - at his home Spanish grand prix, before retiring with engine failure.

"It is important to confirm here what we saw at Barcelona," Alonso, 26, is quoted as saying by the Spanish news agency EFE in Turkey.

"We are not yet at the level of the top teams, but the goal is to get as close as possible to McLaren and BMW," he added.

"We need to know that we did not just go well on one circuit.  So to confirm what we saw in Barcelona is our goal, because the next little step can put us up with the best teams," Alonso said.

He revealed that the next significant step for the R28 will appear on the car in the next "five or six" races.

Meanwhile, Alonso took an early bath from the F1 drivers' football team match on Wednesday to return to his Istanbul hotel to watch Real Madrid play Barcelona on TV.

For the record, Real Madrid secured an emphatic 4-1 win.

Schu's son called 'Mika' in Germany
(GMM)  Michael Schumacher has made another attempt at anonymity for his nine-year-old son, as Mick Schumacher - already nicknamed 'Quick Mick' by the German press - embarks on a go-karting career.

After making his racing debut with the pseudonym Mick Betsch in Spain recently, Schumacher's youngster has now raced in Germany under the name Mika Krauthausen, the Cologne newspaper Express reports.

Mick was competing at his father's own Kerpen circuit in the 'Bambini Challenge'.

'Mika Krauthausen' - perhaps a nod to Schumacher's preferred F1 adversary Mika Hakkinen - reportedly moved from 25th to 13th in one race and from 13th to fifth in the second.

A quiet, slippery start in Turkey
(GMM)  Morning practice got off to a quiet start at Istanbul Park on Friday.

The 'Otodrom' venue was declared wet by race control just prior to the green light at 10am, after circuit workers left the racing line between turns 3 and 9 damp following a late spate of cleaning activities.

For almost the entire opening hour of the 90 minute session, most runners opted simply for a one-lap installation before returning to the pits to wait for the circuit to dry.

Toro Rosso driver Sebastian Vettel said the track was "particularly slippery" through the awesome turn 8 left-handers, and once the action got underway deep into the session, a few drivers - including Jarno Trulli, Giancarlo Fisichella, Lewis Hamilton and Felipe Massa - had spins.

Meanwhile, race stewards are likely to look dimly upon Force India driver Fisichella's apparent running of the red light at the very beginning of the session.

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