Latest F1 news in brief

  • Rosberg cautious about Montreal track surface fix
  • Fittipaldi to be F1 steward in Canada
  • Time short for F1's Turkey-Canada turnaround – report
  • Mercedes should not supply more F1 teams – Brawn
  • Still no Friday practice plans for Virgin's Soucek
  • Alonso welcomes news of Massa's new contract

Rosberg cautious about Montreal track surface fix
(GMM) Nico Rosberg has admitted he is cautious about the news that Montreal's Circuit Gilles Villeneuve has fixed its track surface problems.

On F1's most recent visits to Canada, in 2007 and 2008, the asphalt broke up on the racing line in several sections.

The FIA announced on Wednesday that "the track has been resurfaced in the areas affected by degradation" in 2008.

"We must be cautious," the Mercedes driver said, "because there have been improvements every year, and every year was a disaster.

"But I'm still confident, as I have spoken with FIA officials.

"The FIA has said it has paid close attention, so it should be fine," German Rosberg said in fluent French at a pre-race event in downtown Montreal, according to La Presse newspaper.

Fittipaldi to be F1 steward in Canada
(GMM) Emerson Fittipaldi will be the race steward presiding alongside the three FIA officials at this weekend's Canadian grand prix. 63-year-old Brazilian Fittipaldi won his two F1 world championships in 1972 and 1974, before winning the Indy 500 twice and becoming the IndyCar title holder in 1989.

In formula one, he won his first race during his rookie season for Lotus in 1970, and two years later become F1's youngest champion at 25.

In 1974 he moved to McLaren and won the title again, but then moved to his brother Wilson Fittipaldi's team and struggled.

He stopped driving in F1 at the end of 1980 at the age of 33, joining his brother in managing the team before it fell apart in late 1982.

Fittipaldi switched to American CART racing in 1984, winning the title in 1989 at the age of 43. At 47 he won the Indy 500 for the second time, but an injury ended his Champ Car career in 1996 when he was 50.

He was a Champ Car team owner in 2003 and recently the boss of the Brazilian A1 GP team.

Fittipaldi's nephew Christian drove in F1 for Minardi and Footwork between 1992-1994.

Time short for F1's Turkey-Canada turnaround – report
(GMM) F1 teams had little time between Turkey and Canada to prepare their cars and then transport them to Montreal's Circuit Gilles Villeneuve.

Sauber team manager Beat Zehnder said the spanner in the works was a delay in the equipment's return from Istanbul to the Italian port city of Trieste.

"The ferry did not arrive as planned on Wednesday afternoon, but only at night," he is quoted by Germany's Auto Motor und Sport.

"The cars were not at Hinwil until Thursday, and even later for the English (based) teams.

"On Saturday the serviced cars were sent by air to Montreal," he revealed.

A walk in the Montreal pitlane on Wednesday proved that all the cars are safely inside the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve garages — and that Renault has a new suspension layout for the Canadian event.

It also emerges that a healthy 300,000 spectators are tipped to attend the three-day event.

"I don't want to say what attendance will be before the end of the weekend," said promoter Francois Dumontier on Wednesday. "But we will have a good crowd."

Mercedes should not supply more F1 teams – Brawn
(GMM) Ross Brawn does not think Mercedes should supply any more formula one teams with customer engines.

According to France's Auto Hebdo, the German marque's board met on Monday and discussed the possibility of supplying engines to a fourth team in 2011.

Currently, Mercedes supplies its Brackley based works team as well as McLaren and Force India.

Red Bull wanted to switch from Renault to Mercedes this season, but the move was vetoed by the marque's then exclusive formula one partner McLaren.

McLaren, however, is now only a customer team, meaning that Mercedes is apparently free to supply Red Bull next year if it desires.

But Brawn, team principal of Mercedes GP, told Italy's Autosprint magazine: "In terms of engine deliveries, we are on the limit.

"We should think long and hard before deciding to add another team to the customer list."

It is possible that Brawn simply does not want Red Bull's superior chassis to be combined with the best engine in F1, but he argues that "a (independent) company like Cosworth must be able to sell its engines".

Brawn also denies that the Mercedes is necessarily the best engine on the grid.

"I do not know exactly where we are in that (horse power) area, but there are other things that come into play. You also have to consider the cooling, the fuel consumption and how an engine responds to the input of the driver."

Brawn added that "the boss of Renault's engine department said recently that it (the Renault V8) may be missing some engine power, but in other areas it is the best".

However, it is believed that Red Bull is still eyeing a switch from Renault to Mercedes power for next season.

But team boss Christian Horner is quoted by Motor21: "If the problems (with the Renault engine's power) are solved then there would be no reason to change."

Still no Friday practice plans for Virgin's Soucek
(GMM) Virgin still has no plans to give its test and reserve driver Andy Soucek some laps on the Friday of a grand prix weekend.

We reported in April that the reigning F2 champion is contracted to do some driving in 2010, but he said the new British team "currently have other problems than to be thinking about the third driver".

The 24-year-old Austrian-Spaniard now tells "I have a contract that states I will test at the end of the year for two days."

As for the possibility of a Friday practice session outing, Soucek adds: "I believe it would be interesting for the team to have a third opinion about the car, but at the moment they do not see it the same way.

"Every week I'm putting pressure on the CEO by sending emails," he said.

With Timo Glock and Lucas di Grassi in the race cockpits this year, Soucek is not sure he sees a future at Virgin for 2011.

"It's hard to say," he answered. "I have a one year contract with a clause for renewal. There is a chance of a (race) cockpit, but there are other options," he added.

Asked if he has a plan-B for 2011, Soucek answered: "It's simple — I want to make money with my racing. After almost 14 years I think it's time!

"IndyCar is definitely a possibility and I would go to another series if I would get paid for it. Already this year I am making money with my job."

Alonso welcomes news of Massa's new contract
(GMM) Fernando Alonso has welcomed the news that his current teammate Felipe Massa will be staying at Ferrari at least until the end of 2012.

It had been rumored that the Spaniard's friend Robert Kubica, or Red Bull's Mark Webber, might switch to the Maranello based team to replace Brazilian Massa, 29.

"I am very pleased," Alonso is quoted by Ticionline, "because it means the same group will be working together for another two years.

"Stability is very important to the success of a team," he added. "I feel very well with Felipe — there is a lot of respect between us and that creates the harmony that is necessary to be together for the long term."

Alonso also played down reports that he is ruing a lack of development with the F10 car since winning the season opening Bahrain grand prix.

"It is not right to say that the development stopped; the few tenths to Red Bull has been the same, so that means we have been improving, as have they.

"The truth is that in Spain we did not take the step forward that we expected, while others moved ahead," he said.

Alonso, 28, also acknowledged that the work on the F-duct system has greatly occupied the relevant engineers.

"I think it has been useful to work on it, although we have not been able to exploit this work completely effectively.

"I see that other teams have also had difficulties, while those (McLaren) who had it from the beginning retain the advantage," he added.

Social Media Auto Publish Powered By :