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Latest F1 news in brief
  • Pirelli staying with current F1 tire rules for 2011
  • Frentzen to be FIA steward in Valencia
  • De la Rosa paid three times more by McLaren
  • Michelin did not apply to be 2011 supplier - Shorrock
  • Cosworth preparing engines to accommodate KERS in 2011
  • Ferrari poaching McLaren's Fry 'wise' - Verstappen
  • Group pushes for Hamilton to lose Swiss license
  • Mercedes 'not dropping' 2010 car - Brawn

Pirelli staying with current F1 tire rules for 2011
(GMM)  Pirelli will supply four different dry tire compounds to formula one teams in 2011, the Italian company has announced.

It was confirmed by the FIA on Wednesday that Milan based Pirelli will succeed the departing Bridgestone as F1's new supplier until 2013.

It had been expected that - unlike at present with Bridgestone offering super-soft, soft, medium and hard compounds - Pirelli's compounds would number just three.

But Pirelli has confirmed that on offer in 2011 will be four dry weather tires, plus a full wet tire and an intermediate.

"Following current formula one regulations laid down by .. the FIA, the new contract ensures that Pirelli will provide teams with six different types of tire for the season," read a statement.

It is believed the reason the "current" rules are remaining unchanged is due to the long delay in the appointment of Bridgestone's successor.

The F1 teams recently agreed to commence the designs of their 2011 cars on the basis of Bridgestone's 2010-specification tire.

Also postponed is the touted move from the current 13-inch wheels to a much lower profile.

But Pirelli said "research into innovative new tire developments is a vital part of this exciting program".

The company will also supply GP2 and GP3.

Frentzen to be FIA steward in Valencia
(GMM)  Heinz-Harald Frentzen will be the former driver serving alongside three conventional FIA stewards at this weekend's European grand prix.

The German won three grands prix during his 160-race career between 1994 and 2003.

Frentzen, now 43, drove for Sauber, Williams, Jordan, Prost and Arrows, and subsequently for Opel and Audi in the German touring car series DTM.

De la Rosa paid three times more by McLaren
(GMM)  His McLaren job involved a much higher salary, but Pedro de la Rosa is not keen to go back to mere test driving.

At 39, the Spaniard returned with Sauber to the formula one grid this year after a long spell helping McLaren develop its cars.

The C29, however, has not been a good car, and de la Rosa said after the Canadian grand prix that he is "available" for future employment "even if I have to go back testing or as a reserve driver".

But in interview with El Pais newspaper, de la Rosa insists he is much happier with an actual race seat, even if he is paid "three times less" than he was by McLaren.

"I have enough goals ... I want to be the oldest champion in history," he said.  "Fangio won at 45, and (at that age) was just as good!"

Salary aside, there are other ironies: such as the fact that when he was at McLaren, he learned the layout of the Valencia circuit on the Woking based team's state-of-the-art simulator.

But now that he actually has to race on the streets of the port city this weekend, Sauber does not have a simulator.

Michelin did not apply to be 2011 supplier - Shorrock
(GMM)  Michelin never applied officially to become formula one's new tire supplier.

After the FIA announced on Wednesday that Pirelli has been selected to succeed the departing Bridgestone in 2011, it was reported that Michelin had been the losing applicant.

But the French sports daily L'Equipe quoted Michelin's competition boss Nick Shorrock as clarifying the situation.

"We were asked whether we were ready to supply tires with the regulations of 2010," he said.

Shorrock clarified that Michelin's official answer was no, "in the context of the current regulations remaining in force in 2011".

It is believed that Michelin's main problem with the current rules was that rival tire makers are not eligible to compete with the official supplier.

Shorrock said: "We had discussions with the authorities of F1.

"There were proposals to improve the show, to have a positive impact on the environment while controlling the costs, and of course where there is a competition of manufacturers.

"But the regulations did not change," he insisted.

Cosworth preparing engines to accommodate KERS in 2011
(GMM)  Cosworth is tweaking the design of its formula one engine in order to accommodate KERS systems in 2011.

Although already permitted by the technical regulations, the teams voluntarily agreed to not use the energy-recovery technology this season.

But for 2011, the FOTA ban will lapse, and teams currently powered by Ferrari, Mercedes and Renault have indicated they will fit KERS systems to their cars.

Williams has also indicated it will run KERS in 2011, and as well as the British team, Northampton based Cosworth also currently powers Lotus, Virgin and HRT.

"We have to make several new configurations to our V8 and also change some of the accessories," Cosworth's business director Mark Gallagher is quoted by Autosprint's Italian-language auto.it.

He confirmed: "Our partners will be able to use KERS if they so choose."

Ferrari poaching McLaren's Fry 'wise' - Verstappen
(GMM)  Ferrari is "wise" to have poached an experienced engineer from McLaren, according to former grand prix driver Jos Verstappen.

Briton Pat Fry, McLaren's former joint chief engineer who was with the Woking team for 17 years and recently working on the 2011 car, will start his new role at Ferrari next week as assistant technical director.

"Getting Pat Fry is a wise move," Verstappen wrote in a column for the Dutch newspaper De Telegraaf.

"Like last season, you could say again that Ferrari's performance has not been good enough.

"It is not the drivers' fault -- in particular, I estimate Alonso very highly.

"But in recent years Ferrari has lost some very important people and I think they are still affected by that," he added.

Group pushes for Hamilton to lose Swiss license
(GMM)  A road-crash victim's foundation is calling for Lewis Hamilton to be banned from Swiss roads.

In the wake of the 2008 world champion's so-called 'hoon' hire-car driving incident in March, his girlfriend told a celebrity magazine this month that the pair remain wild at the wheel.

"He's like, 'Babe, you're driving with your knees!" singer Nicole Scherzinger told Maxim magazine.

"I'm doing my makeup, changing the radio ..."

The Pussycat Doll also joked that the pair would be banned if it emerged how fast they had driven in Switzerland, where Hamilton rents an apartment.

In response, the safety group RoadCross revealed it has asked the local attorney general to revoke Hamilton's Swiss driving license, also because the McLaren driver crashed after running a stop sign last year.

A spokesman said: "Public figures should be conscious that they are role models and adopt exemplary driving behavior."

Swiss politician Pius Segmuller told Blick newspaper that he supports the campaign.

"I think they (Hamilton and Scherzinger) show an absolute lack of character.  With these statements, he is a bad role model for all the young people who idolize him."

Mercedes 'not dropping' 2010 car - Brawn
(GMM)  Mercedes is still working on its current car but has started to design the W01's successor, team boss Ross Brawn has revealed.

Michael Schumacher, who is 75 points behind the championship leader Lewis Hamilton, said in Canada that his attention is now turning to 2011.

But while not denying that the next Mercedes car is now on the drawing boards at Brackley, Brawn said the team is not giving up on 2010.

"I think everybody is looking at their cars for 2011," the Briton is quoted by France's Auto Hebdo.

"But we still have various things to put on the W01 in the coming races.  We are not dropping this car, that's for sure," added Brawn.

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