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DATE News (chronologically)
07/17/09
f1
Latest F1 news in brief  
  • Williams' KERS may never be used in F1
  • Glock moves away from Toyota's F1 factory
  • Sponsors pay 2m euros for Alguersuari debut
  • Haug hits back after Lauda criticism
  • Gracia not yet supporting Vatanen or Todt
  • Manager wants Williams debut for Hulkenberg

Williams' KERS may never be used in F1
(GMM)  All will not be lost if Williams does not race its KERS system in formula one.

The Grove team has been busy developing an unique flywheel-based system, but after nine races in 2009 it still has not been fitted to the FW31.

Moreover, the F1 teams have unilaterally decided not to use KERS at all next year.

But even though Williams' system may never see the light of day on the grid, Sir Frank Williams said the technology nonetheless "has very useful and truly interesting commercial applications".

"It's got its own life in that direction," he is quoted as saying by Reuters.

Only Ferrari and McLaren are still persevering with KERS in 2009, after Renault and BMW abandoned their systems.

BMW-Sauber has been a staunch supporter of KERS throughout, but even the Hinwil team's technical director Willy Rampf admits the project has been a flop for the sport.

"If I'd have known at the time what I know today, I would have designed the (2009) car without KERS," he told spox.com.

Rampf refuses to blame KERS for BMW's problems this season, but he admits that the F1.09 features many inherent "compromises" due to having to accommodate the heavy hybrid system.

"The best approach for sure was to build a car with no compromises, like for example the Red Bull," he admitted.

Glock moves away from Toyota's F1 factory
(GMM)  Timo Glock has moved away from Cologne, the locally based Express newspaper claims.

The German driver only recently moved to Junkersdorf, a suburb to the west of Cologne and just a five minute drive to Toyota's formula one headquarters.

But Glock is quoted as insisting his schedule simply did not give him time to make the most of his proximity to the team, and is believed to have moved two hours away to Frankfurt.

Reportedly the move, close to the international airport, is to be closer to his girlfriend Isabell.

Last week Glock, 27, dismissed as "a rumor" reports that he is a contender for Heikki Kovalainen's McLaren seat in 2010.

Glock is believed to have a firm Toyota contract for 2010, but another big rumor in the Nurburgring paddock was that the Japanese carmaker may be close to announcing its decision to withdraw from formula one.

Sponsors pay 2m euros for Alguersuari debut
(GMM)  Jaime Alguersuari's formula one debut is being powered by sponsorship from two major Spanish companies.

It is expected that Toro Rosso will announce next Monday that the 19-year-old Spaniard is to be Sebastien Bourdais' replacement for the Hungarian grand prix and beyond.

Spanish media claim he is backed by the oil company Repsol as well as La Caixa, Spain's leading savings bank.

Press sources claim the companies are advancing 2 million euros to the Faenza based team, guaranteeing Alguersuari the race seat for the forthcoming Hungarian and European grands prix.

Even if Toro Rosso decides to oust the rookie after Valencia, the team is able to keep the Spanish sponsorship funds, the newspaper Diario AS said.

Former Spanish F1 racer and Ferrari test driver Marc Gene is reportedly a close friend of Alguersuari, but he believes the youngster is facing "the most difficult debut in the history" of the sport.

"Jaime is ready, but there are lot of factors playing against him," the 2009 Le Mans winner told Spain's Diario Sport.

He said the testing ban means Alguersuari has not done any proper circuit testing at all in F1 machinery, while Hungary is one of the "most difficult" circuits on the calendar.

Haug hits back after Lauda criticism
(GMM)  Norbert Haug has returned fire at Niki Lauda, after the outspoken triple world champion scolded Lewis Hamilton for wanting to abandon the German grand prix.

When running last at the Nurburgring, the reigning world champion pleaded with the McLaren pitwall to "save this engine and gearbox" but was told to "concentrate on the driving and leave the strategy to us".

Asked about Hamilton's request, Lauda said: "I wouldn't have dared.  A driver should drive because that's what he is paid to do."

Haug, Mercedes' competition boss, hit back at Lauda, referring to the 1976 Japanese grand prix when Lauda could have won the title but refused to drive in the torrential Fuji rain.

"Someone who says he 'wouldn't have dared' should remember when he drove into the pits and gave up a race," the German said.

Haug said it is absolutely wrong to dismiss Hamilton, 24, as unmotivated because he is not in with a shout of the 2009 title.

"I get the feeling that people are simply looking for anything to criticize," he added, explaining that Hamilton's Nurburgring radio call showed the "intelligence" to consider pit strategies on the run.

Gracia not yet supporting Vatanen or Todt
(GMM)  Carlos Gracia, Spain's FIA representative, says he has not decided whether to back the presidential campaigns of Ari Vatanen or Jean Todt.

He told the Spanish newspaper Diario AS that Vatanen, believed to have the support of the formula one teams, "had the courtesy to come to Spain to explain his ideas".

"He recognizes the importance of our country.  I share 90 per cent of his ideas," Gracia added.

As for Todt, Gracia said the Frenchman is a "good candidate" but because he is Max Mosley's preferred successor "I worry about there being a period of continuity".

The Spaniard has already put on the record his fears about Todt's previous alliances with Ferrari and Peugeot.

After Vatanen elected to meet in person with Gracia, meanwhile, it is revealed that Todt instead "preferred to communicate via telephone".

He said he will not announce who he will support "until later".

"It is true that until now we have supported Max Mosley, but once disconnected from his position we can take our decision freely," Gracia said.

He also raised the possibility that Monaco's Michel Boeri will be another "great candidate" to be the next FIA president.

Manager wants Williams debut for Hulkenberg
(GMM)  Nico Hulkenberg will make his formula one debut for Williams next year if the British team activates a contract option, according to his manager.

German Hulkenberg, 21, is managed by Willi Weber, who famously handled the ultra-successful career of Michael Schumacher.

The reigning F3 Euroseries champion currently contests GP2 with ART, the team run by former Ferrari boss Jean Todt's son Nicolas, and backed by traditional Schumacher sponsors including Dekra and Deutsche Vermogensberatung.

Weber wants Hulkenberg to move into F1 next year.

"I have not only held conversations with Williams," he told Germany's Sport Bild, "however if Williams takes up the option, we will drive there for certain."

Weber said he has had talks about Hulkenberg with every formula one team "except Red Bull".

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