Latest F1 news in brief
by Andrew Maitland
August 3, 2005

Alonso to 'relax'
(GMMf1NET -- Aug.3) Title leader Fernando Alonso is playing down the significance of his fruitless Hungarian grand prix.

The Spaniard sees no reason to panic or feel 'extra pressure' even though McLaren rival Kimi Raikkonen closed the gap in the drivers' title.

Alonso, 24, is also unfazed by the silver team's quicker car.

''We have developments on the way,'' he insisted.

''We started this month with a 22 point lead and we end it with 26 and four races less.''

Fernando vowed to 'relax a bit' in the two-weekend gap, which includes a ban on testing, between Hungary and the first ever grand prix in Turkey.

He then explained: ''In Hungary it was our turn to suffer -- now it's time to rest, to plan the final sprint.''

No Williams deal - BMW
(GMMf1NET -- Aug.3) BMW will not supply customer engines to Williams next year, Mario Theissen has effectively confirmed.

After vowing to end the works collaboration and buy Sauber, BMW - the Munich based carmaker - vowed not to leave Frank Williams' team in the lurch when it left the option open.

Germany's Theissen, though, hinted that he couldn't agree a deal with the team principal 'under reasonable conditions.

''But actually,'' he told Autosport, ''we're not really interested (in a deal) since we have our hands full of work building up our own team.''

BMW-Sauber's likely 2006 boss then said he only left the Williams option open because of their six-year collaboration since the year 2000.

Grove based Williams is expected to ink a one-year Cosworth 2.4 liter V8 supply for 2006, ahead of a multi season semi works deal with Toyota.

Kurt Busch visits F1
(GMMf1NET -- Aug.3) NASCAR champion Kurt Busch was an interested spectator at the weekend's Hungarian grand prix.

With a rare weekend off, he stopped at the BAR garage and chatted to Gil de Ferran, another star of the American racing scene as an Indy 500 winner.

''The amount of quality drivers you see come through this walk of life is amazing,'' said the 27-year-old, ''and I am here to say hello.''

Busch, who also attended a grand prix at the Nurburgring two years ago, will race in Indy's 'Brickyard 400' this weekend.

He is an unabashed F1 fan and once harbored an open ambition to conquer single seaters. ''(F1) is so different,'' said the Las Vegas native. ''I'm intrigued.

''I'd love to have a chance to drive one.''

'Calm down, Narain'
(GMMf1NET -- Aug.3) Indian rookie Narain Karthikeyan has been told to 'calm down' if he wants to stay in Formula One.

New team recruit Johnny Herbert, with more than a decade of F1 driving experience, told 28-year-old Karthikeyan that he is making mistakes and falling behind Tiago Monteiro because he is 'overdriving' his yellow racer.

Herbert, 41, is Jordan's new 'sporting relations manager'.

''Narain is a little bit wild at the moment,'' the Briton told Malaysia's The Star newspaper. ''I have just said to him 'calm down, be smooth, don't overdrive the thing'.''

Herbert said that, in contrast, Monteiro is calmer and 'more confident with himself'.

He acknowledged: ''But Narain does have a billion people sitting on his shoulder and that makes life quite difficult.''

Karthikeyan, meanwhile, hammered speculation that he is considering an offer to race India's A1 grand prix car.

''I wouldn't want to be anywhere else,'' he told reporters. ''I do not imagine racing anywhere else.''

Villeneuve off to Canada
(GMMf1NET -- Aug.3) F1's Jacques Villeneuve will travel to Canada in the three-week summer break for a rest and to see friends and family.

The rare two weekend gap between Hungary and Turkey has been plugged with a test ban so that the F1 fraternity can enjoy a day or two of spare time.

''It's good,'' the 34-year-old former world champion told his website, ''because everybody in the team is tired.''

JV, who was born in Quebec but today lives in rural Switzerland, said his schedule between now and late August is 'training, holiday, training.'

He added: ''I'll certainly go to Canada to meet a few friends and say hello to the family.''

Haug's engine idea
(GMMf1NET -- Aug.3) Norbert Haug reckons F1 might be racing down the wrong track with high-revving, V8 engines.

Illustrating the eerie political armistice at present, though, Mercedes' motor sport chief was careful not to criticize next year's debut of the once controversial 2.4 liter power plant.

''Let me stress,'' the German boss told Autosport magazine, ''we are committed to the V8s.''

With the downsizing from 3.0 liter V10, next year's F1 engines will rev to an incredible 20 to 21,000rpm. Haug thinks a better solution for F1 would be a much bigger engine -- perhaps a 4.0 liter V10.

He said: ''You could have (it) restricted to, say, 15,000rpm. I hope I'm wrong but I'm not sure that high-revving 2.4s are the way to go.''

Haug said his solution would produce an easy 750hp while a boost button could pack an extra 100 horse power for passing.

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