• Pirelli Warn Over 4 Stop Races

    Pirelli expects four-stop racesPirelli has urged Formula 1 fans not to over-react if there are more four-stop races this year, after being forced to give up on plans to make its tyres more conservative.
    The Italian company had hoped to be able to tweak its tyres this year on the back of unease about the high number of pitstops required in some early races, as well as a desire to eradicate the delaminations that affected some drivers.
    But with a number of outfits blocking any attempt to change the tyres, amid fears it could hurt their competitive form, Pirelli is now only tweaking the bonding process used to make its rubber.
    Pirelli motorsport director Paul Hembery concedes that he would have preferred being able to make bigger changes to the tyres, but says fans should brace themselves for some races where there will be more stops than usual.
    “We have 19 circuits this year and that means a lot of variable conditions,” Hembery told AUTOSPORT.
    “Sometimes we will be in the consecutive band, and sometimes we will be pushing it right to the end level because it is related to the circuit.
    “The teams do improve their tyre management, as we have seen in the past few seasons where it tends to be lively at the start [of the season] and then by the time we get to Hungary things have levelled out a lot.
    “But I think we will have tough races yet. We have Silverstone coming up – and if it is warm then that again can be a hard race from our point of view.”
    He added: “So we will probably have some races with four stops, which we have said we don’t want.
    “We would have needed to change the hard compound to avoid that, but to do that we would need the agreement from all the teams and we know that is not going to happen.
    “We can do it if asked, but [in the event of four stops], my message would be stick with us for a few races. We talk about averages and over the course of the season we are aiming for an average of two stops.”
  • Jose Froilan Gonzalez- The First Ferrari Winner Dies

    Jose Froilan GonzalezJose Froilan Gonzalez, the first man to win a world championship Formula 1 race for Ferrari, has died at the age of 90.
    After racing in his native Argentina for several years, Gonzalez followed countryman Juan Manuel Fangio to European racing in 1950.
    He retired from his first two F1 starts with a private Maserati, but was recruited as works Ferrari driver for 1951.
    The Pampas Bull, as Gonzalez was nicknamed, duly became Ferrari’s first F1 winner as he defeated Fangio’s Alfa Romeo to win the British Grand Prix at Silverstone.

    Ever-present on the podium in his remaining starts that year, Gonzalez finished the year third in the standings.
    He switched to Maserati for the next two seasons, although his 1953 campaign was truncated by back injuries from a crash in a sportscar race in Lisbon.
    Back at Ferrari for 1954, Gonzalez won the British GP for a second time, as well as a host of non-championship wins. He also triumphed alongside Maurice Trintignant in the Le Mans 24 Hours.
    By the end of the year, Gonzalez had edged out Mike Hawthorn by a mere half a point to take second in the F1 championship behind Fangio.
    That proved to be his final season at international level, as the then 32-year-old chose to return home to Argentina to focus on domestic racing.
    Jose Froilan Gonzalez, Ferrari, British GP 1951, SilverstoneGonzalez continued to make sporadic F1 appearances until 1960, and added another podium finish with second behind Fangio in his home GP in 1955.
    Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo said the company had lost “a true friend”.
    “The news of the death of Gonzalez saddened me greatly,” said di Montezemolo. “We had spoken not that long ago, talking about cars and racing, the topics he was most enthusiastic about.
    “Over all these years, he was always very attached to Ferrari and, as a driver and a man, he played an integral part in our history. His death means we have lost a true friend.”
    Gonzalez’s death means Jack Brabham is now the oldest surviving F1 race-winner.
  • Formula 1 Causes a Stir in Jerusalem

    Three-time F1 Grand Prix winner Giancarlo Fisichella drives his Ferrari Formula 1 car below the ancient walls of Jerusalem's Old City on June 13, 2013 during the first Jerusalem F1 Peace Roadshow. Tens of thousands of spectators have turned out to watch Formula 1 racing teams roar around the edge of Jerusalem’s Old City.
    A showcase event over the past two days featured the Ferrari and Marussia teams.
    The mayor said the idea was to promote peace and bring together people of different faiths.
    However Palestinian officials saw it as an Israeli attempt to show sovereignty over the disputed city.
    Both Israel and the Palestinians claim Jerusalem as their capital.
    Ferrari test driver and three-time Grand Prix winner Giancarlo Fisichella delighted the crowds as he sped past the ancient city walls in his red F1 racing car.
    Marussia’s Rodolfo Gonzalez also took part as well as other international drivers and superbike and stunt riding champions.
    Special stands were erected along main roads which were closed off to traffic to make a 2.8km (1.7 mile) race track. Cars reached speeds of up to 240km (150 miles) per hour.
  • Marshal Killed at Canadian GP

    Marshal dies at Canadian GPA 38-year-old marshal was killed at the end of the Canadian Grand Prix after being hit by a recovery truck.
    The accident happened while Esteban Gutierrez’s stricken Sauber was being removed from the Montreal circuit.
    The International Automobile Federation said the man, who has yet to be named, had stumbled after dropping his radio.
    “I am very, very sad to hear this news and my thoughts are with his family and friends,” said Sebastian Vettel, who won the race for Red Bull.
    The FIA said the marshal stumbled while attempting to pick up his radio as workers used a mobile crane to lift Gutierrez’s car and return it to the pits.
    He was run over by the recovery vehicle, whose driver could not see him, added the FIA.
    Medics stabilised the victim at the track before he was airlifted to hospital where he later died.
    Dr Jacques Bouchard, the Grand Prix’s chief medical officer, said the marshal “suffered major trauma with multiple fractures and a serious abdominal contusion”.
    The FIA have yet to release any details about an investigation.
    “The work of marshals is not always seen but it is vital to our sport and without their commitment, time and dedication there would be no motorsport,” added three-time world champion Vettel, who extended his lead in this year’s championship to 36 points.
    Ferrari driver Fernando Alonso, who finished second, said the man’s death was “terrible news”.
    “Today there is nothing to celebrate,” added the Spaniard on Twitter.
    This was the first marshal fatality since 2001 when Graham Beveridge was fatally injured by a loose wheel from Jacques Villeneuve’s BAR-Honda at the Australian Grand Prix.
    At the previous year’s Italian Grand Prix,volunteer firefighter Paolo Ghislimberti died from head and chest injuries after being hit by a loose wheel from Heinz-Harald Frentzen’s Jordan.
  • Van der Garde Receives British GP Grid Penalty

    Giedo van der Garde, Caterham, Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, Montreal, 2013Giedo van der Garde has been handed a five-place grid position penalty for the British Grand Prix.
    He received the penalty following his collision with Nico Hulkenbergwhich ended both of their races.
    The stewards ruled Van der Garde had been too slow to respond to blue flags instructing him to let the Sauber past. Van der Garde was shown blue flags for a full lap and Hulkenberg had to use his DRS and KERS to get alongside the Caterham at the final corner.
    The pair then collided, damaging Van der Garde’s front wing and Hulkenberg’s suspension. Both retired.
    “It’s disappointing to finish a race like this,” said Hulkenberg. “Lapping can be troublesome, but these guys are racing too and have things happenings in the race, the same as us.”
    “I lapped Giedo van der Garde and braked. At first I didn’t feel anything until I came out of the corner and realised the car wasn’t going straight, so we decided to stop.”
    It is the second penalty Van der Garde received for his driving in the race. He served a ten-second stop-go penalty following a collision with Mark Webber which broke the Red Bull’s front wing. Van der Garde apologised to Webber on Twitter afterwards.
    Caterham were separately fined €2,000 (£1,700) after a team member crossed the pit lane during the race while Daniel Ricciardo was entering the pits. “Although the arriving car was not impeded there was the potential for the team member to be injured,” ruled the stewards.