Latest F1 news in brief - Wednesday
New talks revealed for New York F1 race
|NYC skyline from Weehawken NJ|
- FIA to approve India track this month
- Brawn 'sure' teams will abide August shutdown
- Report - Kubica making steady return from injury
- Schumacher admits more 'relaxed' since comeback
- Williams chief wants even more races
- Pirelli announces tires for next 3 races
New talks revealed for New York F1 race
|Proposed Weehawken, NJ layout|
(GMM) Yet another attempt to bring the New York skyline to formula one has emerged.
The Wall Street Journal reports that the mayors of New Jersey townships Weehawken and West New York have revealed talks with private investors to put together a street race by 2013.
"In these uncertain economic times when every direct and indirect revenue source is vital, our own formula one race could be a very positive boost to our citizens," mayors Richard Turner and Felix Roque said in a joint statement.
"This said, we need to ensure that the financial benefits from the privilege of having these races in our towns are equitably shared and that no tax dollars are used. The investor group has already told us that our towns would be substantially compensated annually," they added.
A spokesman for New Jersey governor Chris Christie said the mayors have held preliminary talks about the proposal.
"The prospect of having Formula One come to New Jersey is exciting," he said.
Austin is scheduled to host its inaugural US grand prix on a purpose-built circuit next year.
According to the Wall Street Journal the talks are in "early stages" with Leo Hindery Jr. heading up the potential investors.
The race would run alongside the US Grand Prix in Austin which will hold its inaugural race next year. F1 CEO Bernie Ecclestone has shown interest in bringing F1 to New Jersey before and last year revealed plans for a race there should Austin - which at that time was still in its planning stages - fall through.
"It would be in front of Manhattan in New Jersey, with the skyscrapers in the background," Ecclestone said, adding: "Fifteen minutes from the centre of New York to the circuit would be marvelous."
There were also talks last year of hosting a grand prix in Jersey City's Liberty State Park but mayor Jerramiah Healy vetoed the plans. The difference with the new project is that it has the local mayors' backing.
The Wall Street Journal said Bernie Ecclestone could not be reached for comment.
FIA to approve India track this month
(GMM) F1's governing body will inspect the new Indian grand prix venue at the end of August.
The Buddh circuit near New Delhi is nearing completion ahead of its inaugural formula one race on October 30.
The Asian Age reports that FIA official Charlie Whiting will inspect the venue so that it can be homologated on September 1.
"We have been sending reports to the FIA on a fortnightly basis and they are completely satisfied with the progress," said Indian motor sport clubs president Vicky Chandhok.
"Actually the final inspection was scheduled for the first week of August and the track was ready for it. But (Whiting) confirmed that he will be coming to New Delhi only on August 31."
The report said the pits, grandstands, hospitality area and media centre are complete, with the final layer of asphalt to be laid in mid September.
"The basic track is ready with curbs and tecpro barriers in place," added Chandhok.
Brawn 'sure' teams will abide August shutdown
(GMM) F1 teams will not police their rivals' adherence to the August factory shutdown.
In the rare month-long gap between the Hungarian and Belgian grands prix, teams have agreed a mandatory two-week break period in which factories are strictly closed.
Staff are not even allowed to email one another, but Mercedes team boss Ross Brawn admitted that the shutdown is not really policed.
"We trust each other and are quite sure that everyone will abide by the agreements," he is quoted by DPA news agency.
But Brazilian journalist Livio Oricchio said he doubts the agreement will be strictly adhered to, arguing that it would make "no sense" in the midst of a F1 season.
Red Bull designer Adrian Newey however said he intends to take a break.
"I think you have to be able to stop working and thinking, otherwise it would be completely all-consuming and probably not healthy," he said.
Another journalist, Stefano Mancini, wrote in La Stampa newspaper that "nobody in his right mind" thinks the likes of Newey will really "turn off the light in his office and says to his staff 'See you in fifteen days'.
"The factories will stop but the brains will not," he added.
Brawn agreed: "We can't escape from it completely because that's our nature, but of course it's better to be reflecting on the beach than in the office!"
Report - Kubica making steady return from injury
(GMM) Robert Kubica is making slow yet steady progress as he pushes to return to formula one.
Germany's Die Welt reports that the Pole, horribly injured in a February rally crash, is now able to move his right hand, fingers and arm, despite initial fears the limb would have to be amputated.
The report said Kubica's arm will "probably never recover entirely", but dexterity has returned to most of the fingers even if the "middle finger still causes problems".
"His thumb has recovered full movement," said Welt writer Burkhard Nuppeney.
Renault team owner Gerard Lopez said recently that Kubica might be invited to drive in a Friday practice session later this year; an offer rejected vehemently by his manager Daniele Morelli.
"If Robert comes back," he said, "he doesn't want gifts or kindly-meant offers."
Kubica's friend Fernando Alonso understands.
"If you've been through so much and given as much as Robert has suffered to come back, you only want to come back for one reason -- to have the same goals as before."
The Spaniard is convinced that, also psychologically, Kubica will be able to put the chapter behind him.
"The accident was bad luck and a man of his caliber can shake it off, particularly as it had nothing to do with formula one," said Alonso.
Schumacher admits more 'relaxed' since comeback
(GMM) Michael Schumacher has admitted he is sporting a more "relaxed" attitude since returning to formula one.
In his first, ultra-successful career to 2006 spanning a record seven titles and 91 wins, the German was known for an intense and often frosty character.
"It is a fact that I am somewhat more relaxed than I was before," the 42-year-old told Cologne tabloid Express, referring to his character since returning to F1 with Mercedes. "No question."
But he denies he is any less serious.
"I just have much more experience and simply know what is necessary at what moment," said Schumacher. "I know when I need to be concentrated and when I can ease up."
Schumacher is yet to return to the podium in his 30 grands prix since 2010.
Williams chief wants even more races
Williams chairman Adam Parr has gone against the grain and declared he wants more races on the already packed Formula One calendar.
Several teams have said they are uncomfortable with the thought of a record 21 grands prix next year, although Turkey looks set to be dropped to bring the number down to 20, still a logistical and mental challenge for F1 participants.
However, Parr thinks shorter event weekends could open up space for other races as the sport continually expands to new markets with a first Indian Grand Prix due in October.
"I think the number of races can increase a little bit. We might have to look at the format of the weekend but we could do a couple more races," Parr told reporters.
"There are ways of increasing revenues."
Pirelli announces tires for next 3 races
Formula 1 tire supplier Pirelli has announced which Slick compounds will be used for the upcoming Belgian, Italian and Singapore Grands Prix of September.
As has been the case since Bridgestone was the tire provider in 2007, each driver is obliged to use both types of Slick in a normal dry race. Should rain affect proceedings, using both dry compounds is not long mandatory.
“We’re learning more and more with every race in our first year of Formula 1 and fine-tuning our compound choices to benefit from the valuable information that we are accumulating,” says Pirelli Motorsport Director Paul Hembery.
“We’ve got three of the most thrilling races on the entire calendar coming up and we believe that we’ve arrived at some tire nominations that are very well-suited to the characteristics of these very different but equally exciting circuits.”
Pirelli tire choices for the next three races:
Belgian Grand Prix:
Prime: Medium (white)
Option: Soft (yellow)
Italian Grand Prix:
Prime: Medium (white)
Option: Soft (yellow)
Singapore Grand Prix:
Prime: Soft (yellow)
Option: Super Soft (red)