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DATE News (chronologically)
09/21/10
f1
Latest F1 news in brief - Tuesday  
  • Ferrari still chasing 2010 wins
    HRT mechanic to leave hospital 'soon'
  • Ferrari to feature another diffuser step in Singapore
  • Singapore makes track changes for 2010 race
  • Coulthard keen to stay in DTM category
  • Politician wants to see Red Bull move to Austria
  • Pirelli role good step back to F1 for Grosjean - Boullier
  • Ecclestone, Hamilton, urge 'better car' for Chandhok
  • Calendar won't grow beyond 20 races - Ecclestone
  • Vettel not ready to give up 2010 title chances

HRT mechanic to leave hospital 'soon'
(GMM)  The mechanic injured during Sakon Yamamoto's Monza pitstop is still in hospital, the HRT team has revealed.

The German radio mechanic, whose first name is Marco, was nursing broken bones and concussion after being struck violently by Japanese Yamamoto's rear wing and wheel.

He is "recovering positively", the Spanish team said in a statement late on Monday.

"He is supposed to leave the hospital in Italy soon, where he was kept under observation and go back to Germany, his home country," added Hispania.

Ferrari to feature another diffuser step in Singapore
(GMM)  Ferrari will unveil yet another development of its blown diffuser layout on the streets of Singapore this weekend.

After encountering difficulties with the F10's latest developments at Spa recently, the Italian team finally got the layout working optimally at Monza, where Fernando Alonso won from pole position.

"We now have a package that should work on all types of circuits," the Spaniard is quoted by Auto Motor und Sport.

"We know Red Bull will be very strong at the next two circuits, but we should now be more consistent than we were before.

"Consistency is the key to this title," said Alonso.

The next step, to be seen for the first time in Singapore this weekend, is a further integration of the diffuser and the gearbox and how the exhaust gases are directed through the rear bodywork.

"This race will be important but not decisive," team boss Stefano Domenicali told La Gazzetta dello Sport.

"The championship looks to be open right until the end, and the new scoring system helps us," he added.

As for the new developments for Singapore, Domenicali is quoted by Tuttosport: "We need to avoid a repeat of what happened in Belgium, where our developments failed to give us what we expected because we weren't able to test them.

"It's impossible to predict what will happen because there are so many variables at play," added the Italian.

He confirmed that the F10's next developments are "aerodynamic" in nature, situated "at the bottom of the car".

Singapore makes track changes for 2010 race
(GMM)  Singapore has made changes to its Marina Bay formula one street circuit ahead of this weekend's grand prix.

According to the race organizers, the changes are mainly to "address the feedback from the drivers".

The track has been resurfaced between turns 3-7 and 14-19 to minimize bumps, while the pitlane surface has been lowered by a centimeter and resurfaced to ensure a smoother transition to and from the track.

The controversial turn 10 chicane, where Kimi Raikkonen crashed in 2008, has also been changed, with the curbs realigned to make the changes of direction more gradual so that drivers can "make safer exits" from the section.

Aesthetic changes have also been made, including the bright colorization of the walls and the run-off areas.

Coulthard keen to stay in DTM category
(GMM)  David Coulthard has indicated he intends to stay in the German touring car championship DTM into the near future.

The 13-time grand prix winner, whose last season in F1 was with Red Bull in 2008, debuted in the German category this year with a 2008-spec Mercedes C-Class.

"In 2012 the new (DTM) cars are coming and I will like to be here for that," the Scot, 39, told Bild am Sonntag newspaper.

Coulthard, who attends all the grands prix as a pundit for British television, indicated he will discuss the situation with Norbert Haug by the end of the year.

He also said he hopes to see his F1 nemesis Michael Schumacher on the DTM tracks one day.

"He's a big name and it would be great to see him in the DTM in a few years," said the former McLaren driver.  "We need people like that."

Politician wants to see Red Bull move to Austria
(GMM)  An Austrian politician is hoping Red Bull Racing will relocate its formula one team to Austria in the coming years.

Team owner Dietrich Mateschitz has this year been bankrolling the restoration of the A1-Ring circuit, which was demolished after formula one last visited in 2003.

Styrian economic councilor Christian Buchmann told laola1.at that the track will be ready to host races in April or May of next year.

Earlier, it was rumored that the track had been earmarked as a potential reserve venue for F1.

"From a technical and safety viewpoint, it's formula one-compatible," said Dr Buchmann.  "But to talk about an F1 race in Spielberg now would be premature."

In truth, the restored A1-Ring has not been designed for grands prix, given its spectator capacity of just 25,000.

Buchmann said: "Personally, I have a dream that Mr. Mateschitz will move one of his race teams to Spielberg.

"It would be great to see Red Bull not only with an Austrian license, but also with an Austrian base."

Pirelli role good step back to F1 for Grosjean - Boullier
(GMM)  Romain Grosjean's new Pirelli testing role is a good step towards his return to the formula one grid, according to Eric Boullier.

Boullier is not only boss of the Renault team, but also the Gravity Sport management company, who have recently signed up the Swiss-born French driver.

"It's obviously a very good thing for him," Boullier, referring to the Pirelli job, is quoted by France's Auto Hebdo.

GP2 and former Renault driver Grosjean, 24, has been appointed to replace the Sauber-bound Nick Heidfeld at this week's Pirelli tire test at Monza.

He is hoping the role will become full-time.

Said Boullier: "It allows him to drive a formula one car and gives him credibility within the paddock.

"He deserves a second chance," added the Frenchman, who decided to replace Grosjean with Russian pay-driver Vitaly Petrov for the 2010 Renault race seat.

Boullier said "a lot of teams" positioned to have drivers appointed by Pirelli to replace Heidfeld.

He also expects Petrov and his teammate Robert Kubica to have a better weekend in Singapore after a difficult Monza outing.

"We knew Monza was not our favorite track, but from Singapore and the rest of the season we should regain the level of performance we had in Belgium," said Boullier.

"We are not planning to change the 'F-duct' in Singapore because it's working just fine, but we will have a new front wing," he revealed.

Ecclestone, Hamilton, urge 'better car' for Chandhok
(GMM)  Bernie Ecclestone has backed Karun Chandhok to return to the formula one grid next year with a "better car".

When the Indian rookie signed up for his debut season with HRT this year, he thanked F1 chief executive Ecclestone for being "a superb pillar of support to me and my family".

However, it is now expected that Chandhok, 26, will sit out the remainder of the season in deference to the Japanese pay-driver Sakon Yamamoto.

But crucially, one of Chandhok's sponsors is Jaypee Sports, who are bringing formula one to India next year at the circuit currently under construction 40 kilometers southeast of New Delhi.

Ecclestone in 2010 described India as one of "the most important and powerful players in the world of business, culture and sport".

The Briton is now quoted by the Times of India: "Having an Indian team (Force India) is obviously a big help.  An Indian driver will be an even better deal.

"I definitely want to see Karun in a better car next year," said the diminutive 79-year-old.

Ecclestone said of Chandhok, who now travels to the grands prix to commentate for British television: "He served his apprenticeship in a car that he could do nothing about.

"He really needs to be in a team where he can show his potential because I think he can be very, very good if he gets the right car," added Ecclestone.

He said he plans to visit the site of next October's inaugural Indian grand prix after the forthcoming race in Brazil.

"The rains would've stopped by then (November)," said Ecclestone.  "Work has really suffered I heard."

On a PR visit to India last weekend, Lewis Hamilton also backed Chandhok to shine at the wheel of a better car.

"Karun is a very good driver," said the 2008 world champion.  "He understands the nuances of the sport very well and if he is able to get a better car, he would be able to make a big difference."

Calendar won't grow beyond 20 races - Ecclestone
(GMM)  Bernie Ecclestone has vowed to keep the F1 calendar at a maximum of 20 races per season.

The 2010 schedule features 19 events, equaled in length in the sport's history only by the calendar of 2005.

But the arrival of India has pushed the 2011 calendar up to 20 races, and if races are not dropped ahead of 2012, new events in the US and Rome could see the schedule grow even longer.

"We want to have these extra races because it's good for formula one, but it's reaching a critical stage in terms of people being able to cope," warns Mercedes team boss Ross Brawn.

Lewis Hamilton agrees: "A season of 19 races is too demanding from the point of sponsors and endorsements.  We have promotional events, training, testing and upgrades.

"So it does put extra pressure and we need to manage our time more efficiently," added the McLaren driver.

But in an interview with the Times of India, F1 chief executive Ecclestone has promised to cap the calendar at 20 races.

"We really should be at 16, to be honest," said the Briton.  "20 is plenty, that's the limit.  No more.

"I've been able to squeeze in 20 but I wouldn't want to increase it.  There'll be mayhem otherwise," he joked.

Vettel not ready to give up 2010 title chances
(GMM)  With five races to go, Sebastian Vettel is not giving up on winning the 2010 world championship.

His teammate Mark Webber is 24 points further ahead and narrowly leading the drivers' standings over Lewis Hamilton, Fernando Alonso and Jenson Button.

Red Bull consultant Helmut Marko hinted recently that the team should sit down after Monza to assess its championship chances, amid light pressure from Webber to be appointed number 1.

But Vettel told Bild am Sonntag newspaper: "We are not panicking.  We are quietly doing our work.

"I believe in the title -- that is the most important thing.  It will be very close in the finale, but I'm optimistic," said the German.

He dismissed the argument that his 24 point deficit to Webber is insurmountable.

"Whether it's 24, 25 or 30, it doesn't matter," said Vettel, 23.

"The new points system worries people more than it should.  Now there are 25 points for a win, so under the familiar (old) system, I'd only be 8 or 9 points behind.

"Then it would seem much less dramatic," he insisted.

Australian Webber, however, is open to having Vettel relegated to a supporting role for the final run to the 2010 finish-line.

"It would be a nice problem for me to have and then it's up to the team as to what's the best way for them to win the championships," he said in an interview with BBC Sport.

"It's definitely not for me to answer that one," said the 34-year-old.

McLaren's Hamilton, however - just 5 points behind Webber's lead and 17 in front of his teammate Jenson Button - is not expecting to be favored by McLaren.

"The best driver will win the day," said the 2008 world champion.

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