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DATE News (chronologically)
05/16/11
f1
Latest F1 news in brief - Monday
  • Helmut Marko dismisses breakaway talks
    Marko plays down Montezemolo's breakaway talk
  • Glock admits 107pc fears for Virgin
  • Interlagos corner changes set for 2012 race
  • Red Bull, McLaren oppose Todt's plan for more testing
  • No driver moves at Toro Rosso now - Tost
  • Irvine tops British F1 rich list
  • Red Bull team not heading to Austria - Mateschitz
  • Webber 'can take points off others' - Marko
  • Williams to test updated diffuser in Spain

Marko plays down Montezemolo's breakaway talk
(GMM)  Helmut Marko has played down Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo's threat that formula one could be headed for a split from owners CVC.

Montezemolo told CNN last week that at the end of 2012 and the current Concorde Agreement CVC "doesn't own anything" and therefore creating a different world championship is a real option for the teams.

Red Bull's motor racing consultant Marko however admitted that the dispute is fundamentally about the distribution of revenue for the next Concorde.

"A suitable compromise can hopefully be found," he told German website motorsport-magazin.com at the opening of the Red Bull Ring.

"Ferrari are the best-known team and have been in F1 the longest -- but being Italian, they tend to express things more emotionally than others.  In my opinion, the situation is nowhere near as bad as it looks," said Marko.

New York Times correspondent Brad Spurgeon said the latest breakaway talk is "exasperating for the fans" coming so soon after the last political dispute with the FIA.

A potential hurdle for proposed buyer News Corp is the law, with prominent competition lawyer Paul Stone reportedly concerned that Rupert Murdoch's presence would be unfair for bidding television broadcasters.

He is quoted by Germany's Speed Week as saying a News takeover "would raise concerns".

Timo Glock wasting his career racing for backmarker teams in F1
Glock admits 107pc fears for Virgin
(GMM)  Timo Glock has expressed concern that simply qualifying for races might soon be difficult for the Virgin team in 2011.

The German was openly disappointed when significant elements of a major upgrade for the MVR-02 car did not work effectively in Turkey just over a week ago.

He said the team needs to get to the bottom of the problems or risk falling way behind the progress of its rivals.

"If our development packages do not work, it will soon be difficult for us to qualify for the race," Glock, referring to the newly reintroduced 107 per cent qualifying rule, is quoted by Speed Week.

He insisted, however, that he is not so disillusioned that he is losing patience with the Virgin project.

"I stand behind the team," insisted the former Jordan and Toyota driver.  "We need to solve our problems and change only a few things and then we will make progress."

Interlagos corner changes set for 2012 race
(GMM)  The controversial 'Cafe' corner at Interlagos will still be in place for the 2011 season finale in November.

Following two recent fatalities in stock car races at the fast left-hand kink, the Sao Paulo circuit has agreed to make changes that will require significant work including the removal of a grandstand.

The FIA's Charlie Whiting inspected the section at the weekend, according to the Agencia Estado news agency.

It was reported afterwards that work on the revised section will take place in the first six months of 2012, in time for next year's F1 race.

"Charlie liked what he saw and it's now a matter for the engineers," an official is quoted as saying.

"It will take time, and the timetable that we have begins only after the (2011) formula one (race)," he added.

Red Bull, McLaren oppose Todt's plan for more testing
(GMM)  Some teams have admitted they do not support Jean Todt's proposal to allow some in-season testing in formula one next year.

The FIA president and former Ferrari boss said in Turkey that he will push for the teams to agree to change the severe test limitations, or simply impose the new regulations for the 2013 season.

"We are not interested in the idea of allowing private testing during the season," Red Bull team boss Christian Horner said bluntly, according to Autosprint's Italian-language website.

"We consider the current situation to be well balanced.  To change it would raise costs, inevitably," added the Briton.

Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo told CNN last week that F1 is the "only professional sport in the world" that does not allow "training".

"It is true that some teams favor more testing during the season," said McLaren and FOTA chief Martin Whitmarsh, "but we must also safeguard the interest of the smaller teams, who do not have great financial means."

No driver moves at Toro Rosso now - Tost
(GMM)  Franz Tost has played down his recent comments about Daniel Ricciardo, but the hopeful Australian driver admits he is encouraged about the progress of his formula one career.

Team boss Tost's comments in Turkey about 21-year-old Ricciardo suggested he will definitely replace either Sebastien Buemi or Jaime Alguersuari at Toro Rosso next year.

But the Austrian told motorsport-magazin.com at the Red Bull Ring opening: "Regarding the other drivers (Buemi and Alguersuari), nothing is up for discussion at the moment, as they are both performing well."

Ricciardo, however, said he is encouraged by Tost's admission that he will be in the race cockpit in 2012.

"I was glad to hear that Franz made that statement," he told another German website, motorsport-total.com.

"Nothing is confirmed, but I am encouraged, of course," added Ricciardo, who won the recent Monza race of the Formula Renault 3.5 series.

"On the other hand, it is obvious that this is the plan for me.  You don't want to be doing the Friday practice for two or three years," he said.

Irvine tops British F1 rich list
(GMM)  Eddie Irvine has outpaced F1's current British stars on the Sunday Times' sporting rich list for 2011.

The former Ferrari and Jaguar driver and 1999 championship runner-up has made a US $128 million fortune in property development since retiring from formula one in 2002.

1979 world champion Jody Scheckter, now a successful organic farmer, has $96 million, with Prodrive boss David Richards and David Coulthard coming next.

2008 title winner Lewis Hamilton's $80m fortune matches Scottish veteran Coulthard's, which is more than McLaren's other driver Jenson Button at $77m.

1992 world champion Nigel Mansell's fortune is the same as Button's, according to the list.

Red Bull team not heading to Austria - Mateschitz
(GMM)  Dietrich Mateschitz has ruled out relocating his pacesetting formula one team Red Bull Racing to Austria.

The energy drinks mogul and Austrian billionaire reopened the former A1-Ring, rechristened as the Red Bull Ring, at the weekend.

F1's most famous figure Bernie Ecclestone was even present, kindling rumors he might seriously be considering reviving the Austrian grand prix.

"This track is ready for formula one," Mark Webber told Kleine Zeitung newspaper after a few hot laps, and Sebastian Vettel agreed that a grand prix could be held now at the Red Bull Ring "theoretically and practically".

But Mateschitz insisted: "We will not get a formula one or a MotoGP race here."

More realistic, perhaps, is that Red Bull Racing is relocated from Milton Keynes (UK) to the facility.

"I've thought about it, but no," Mateschitz answered.  "You can build whatever you want, but in Styria you cannot get 300 of the best people in formula one."

Webber 'can take points off others' - Marko
(GMM)  Mark Webber is headed into a backseat role for the rest of the 2011 world championship.

That is the controversial suggestion of Red Bull's Dr Helmut Marko, who denies the Australian driver is already set to be Sebastian Vettel's 'number 2' this season.

Vettel has had a meteoric start to the 2011 championship and after four races is 38 points ahead of Australian Webber, who sits third in the drivers' standings.

"We do not have any team orders," energy drink company Red Bull's motor racing consultant Marko told Germany's Sport Bild.

"But it's a fact that, generally since Silverstone 2010, Mark has been three tenths of a second slower than Sebastian," he said.

"That's too slow to be able to win with his own steam.  But if as in Turkey he races at a high level, he can take important points away from the others," added Marko.

Webber is the only significant member of the Red Bull team whose contract beyond 2011 was not recently renewed.

Williams to test updated diffuser in Spain
Williams will begin the Barcelona weekend by testing a new version of its diffuser on Friday. The Grove team, which is yet to score points in 2011, is also pinning hopes on new rear wings which first appeared last time out in Turkey.

“Barcelona is a circuit that demands good aero efficiency,” explains Williams Technical Director Sam Michal. “It isn’t a track that is hard on brakes and, with its long high-speed corners, the aero efficiency of the cars can be the biggest performance differentiator.

“Since the Turkish Grand Prix, we have been working on our new rear wings that we ran in practice at Istanbul Park and we will have them on both cars again in Barcelona. In addition to that, we’ll have new exhaust blown diffusers to test.”

Australian Michael, who will be leaving Williams at the end of the season, also predicts a more action-packed Spanish Grand Prix than in recent years.

“The circuit layout hasn't been favorable for overtaking in the past,” he continued. “However, with the tire degradation and the moveable rear wing, it will likely be different this year.”

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