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  • 07-09-2004, 05:25 PM
    Jim Derrig 93 750

    true but my point was . . .

    . . . that he could have run those "blazing laps" anytime, as he always was faster than the Renault except at the very start. The race was not an illusion from the point of view that Alonzo certainly grabbed the lead and conceivably might have been able to block MS for 70 laps in the absence of the 4-stopper. It was an illusion to the extent it made the Renault look competitive with the Ferrari in terms of overall race pace.

    I mean, elsewhere I read people posting that MS was having a hard time keeping up before Alonso's first pit. ROFLMAO! MS was just sitting back and waiting. He was in a race to avoid having to race.

  • 07-09-2004, 12:04 PM

    There's a bit more to it than that...

    He did run some blazing fast laps to get the gap on Alonso, and the short fill combined with that made it possible to get around. Sadly those blazing-fast laps look exactly the same as the other 68 laps from the stands.

    I fast-forwarded or read a book for most of the race. Ruben's pass at the end was a nice bonus but this "race" completely sucked otherwise.

    When I watch qualifying (or more accurately, fast forward to the Peter Windsor segments and the top guys' runs), I pay attention to the track map as Hobbs goes over it. That told me that there'd be no passing in the race, so I planned all along to watch the start then fast-forward over most of it.

    Oh yeah, you don't want to miss the weekly Honda/Mercedes engine explosions... they spice things up a teeny bit.

    Overall, part of the problem is that the TV directors are too stupid to try and find some passing to show us, and they just feed shots of the leaders parading around while the action mid-field is ignored.
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  • 07-08-2004, 01:11 PM

    Re: ..but...

    I have to disagree with point 1

    if they (well, not all...;-) ) can make engines that rev to 19000 and last for 3 days when just a year ago they lasted one day..... I think that's pretty cool.

    on the braking.....they could go back to steel brakes...

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  • 07-08-2004, 12:12 PM
    Dave B

    I didn't see MotoGP....

    but I saw AMA from Brainerd a week or so ago....actual passing every lap at the end... I could not look away. It was just as good at Barber's, seeing it in person was great.

    F1 needs 'some bike influence'
  • 07-08-2004, 11:52 AM
    Jim Derrig 93 750

    Re: ..but...

    good points but:

    1. The "pinnacle of engineering" mantra hasn't been true for years. Electronically, F1 isn't much past 1985. No ABS. No VVT. No active suspension. No 4wd. Relatively primative traction control (partly due to absense of abs and 4wd). The list goes on and on.

    2. You certainly can have a sequential gearbox that you shift directly and which uses a manual clutch.

    3. For the technophiles (like me), how about no more body work past the driver's compartment other than a single wing, just like about 1968? You get to see all that cool stuff.

    4. Agree that the 13" wheel is there to limit brake size, but if we reduce downforce, mechanical grip and brake size could be increased and there STILL would be a larger passing zone than what we have now. Also, I'm not convinced that the size of the passing zone for a late brake manuever is the problem. The problem is that because of aerodynamics, the "late brake at the hairpin" is the ONLY manuever left to use. This means some tracks have no passing zones at all.
  • 07-08-2004, 07:57 AM


    if F1 is to be the top of motorsports and the pinnacle of engineering you can't have non sequential shifters when most other formulas and even road cars have them...

    also the 13 inch limit on wheel size is there to limit brake disk size, bigger wheel, bigger disk...<p align=center>
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  • 07-08-2004, 07:22 AM

    More like a Takuma Sato-ish move...

    ...except he actually pulled it off.<p align=center>
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  • 07-07-2004, 10:49 PM
    Jim Derrig 93 750

    Well . . .

    I think you have a good point, but I think the equation is more complex. Budgets are not fixed, but are subject to revision, and if more success can be had by spending more, then the team leaders will be going back to those boardrooms and asking for more and more.

    Boards will not allocate money past the point of diminishing returns (theoretically). The more wide open the technology, the more likely it will be that the team can make a case for spending more $, and the more likely it is that the budget will increase. After all, to borrow your analogy, nobody is spending $250 million on R&D for a NASCAR stocker! Why not? The money wouldn't buy anything because there is not that much room for technological improvement.

    If the technology is limited, then the point of diminishing returns is lowered and costs go down.

    Or, to look at it from the other side of the equation, the Ferrari's and Toyota's can spend all that money, but if you can only run a 2.4 liter V8, then chance of another $200 million of engine research buying an actual advantage is considerably diminished. If you can run any engine you can think of, then there's a much better chance that the money will turn out to be well spent.

    I agree that vast amounts of money are being spent on incremental improvements. The only positive way I can see to counter that is to decrease the number of areas where R&D can be done, ie., make F1 a more "spec" series. The law of diminishing returns will work to limit budgets as far as the remaining open developement areas go. Expense will still be ridiculous, of course, but maybe the "little guys" will have more of a chance.

  • 07-07-2004, 07:56 PM

    Another view....

    Logically and economically, F1 teams now spend and will continue to spend all the money they have to boost performance. Ferrari is on top yet the continue to spend big bucks to continue to improve. No one is holding back.

    I do not believe alternatives to the existing formula involving turbo v. non-turbo; front engine v. rear engine, etc. would be more expense. Here\'s why:

    Currently teams start a season with a \"new\" engine that has been developed using all of their developmental budget for engine improvement: why would they spend a penny less than the money they have available? The new engine (for arguments sake) might get 30 more horsepower than last year (higher revs? better breathing? less friction loss), 20 more lb. ft. of torque in lower rev ranges, is 2 kilo\'s lighter and has a center of gravity that is 10 mm lower. Yet these \"improvements\" cost all the money they had- literally tens of millions. Instead, why not allow them to spend whatever they would have spent to experiment in visable ways (12 cyl. V12 turbo? 8 Cyl. with more displacement to be used on a heavier chassis?). Costs are not linear- they spend all they have now (literally tens of millions $) to get minor changes that no one can \"see.\"

    Absent a \"spec series\" teams will always spend \"all they have.\" With Ferrari, they still run the company in Enzo\'s vision (sell road cars to get money for the race team). Toyota has big bucks, yet will spend to the point the board of directors and shareholders say \"enough\". BTW, money does not, in and of itself, assure success in any field. The answer always is \"money spent wisely.\"

    Even series that are heavily technology-limited (NASCAR), teams spend all the money they have. I read it is near impossible under the rules to build a NASCAR \"stocker\" (now THERE\'S a joke!) costing more than about $100K- yet the \"top\" teams have fleets of 10 or 20 cars per driver, custom tailored to specific tracks. The economic law of racing holds- whatever you have, you spend, no matter what the rules and limits.

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  • 07-07-2004, 10:58 AM
    Jim Derrig 93 750

    I agree with much of what you say . . .

    . . but some of your "solutions" are not.

    1. Allowing open engine designs will exacerbate the current spending frenzy, as engine design will change with every incremental change in technology. Suppose, for example, somebody comes up with a workable high rpm VVT system, but friction constraints dictate that a V8 is the best format. Everyone builds a V8. Then a lubrication advance reduces friction and now V10's are the way to go. The rich teams now build V10's. After a few iterations of this, F1 will have to be renamed "The Ferrari-Toyota series" because they'll be the only ones left.

    The same phenomena would impose itself if F1 adopted any sort of formula which attempts to equalize different engine designs, e.g., turbos and normally aspirated. Incremental technology changes would quickly outpace the equalization equation, and we'd see constant shifts from one engine type to another. Very expensive.

    I'd suggest 2.4 liter V8's, normally aspirated.

    2. Totally agree on the transmission issue. Make the drivers shift. Not sure what problem the self-start rule would solve.

    3. Current regs already dictate pump-level octane, so this certainly seems doable.

    4. I would posit that the current Ferraristone dominance is due at least in part to one team having its own, personal tire mfg. How would your rules change avoid this? F1 needs a spec tire.

    5. You got that right.

    6. My add: Item 5 is directly related to aerodynamics. Plus, if we move to slicks withOUT reducing aerodynamics, we will see reduced braking zones and overtaking will be even harder. Therefore, severe aero restrictions must be imposed. No more diffusers and no more front wings. Really. Reduce downforce by 50% and compensate by getting rid of the antiquated 13" wheel limit and allowing slicks. We'll have very nimble cars with huge mechanical grip that stays constant no matter how close they are to the car in front.
  • 07-07-2004, 10:42 AM
    Jim Derrig 93 750

    The "race" was an illusion

    I was taken in until about lap 60, and then Rueben's (very nice) pass at the end confirmed it. Micheal Schumacher had this race in the bag from the start, and the only questions were when and how he would pass Alonso.

    All we were treated to was an elaborate risk mitigation strategy designed to move MS into the lead with the least amount of effort. If it wasn't for the superior Renault "launch control," MS would have grabbed the lead at the start and motored off into the distance at about .3 seconds a lap faster than Alonso. As it was, he held back and played a classic (and boring) MS "stalking" strategy in which he deliberately does NOT challenge on the track for the lead, and instead uses pit stop chess moves to pass.

    Todt decided to use a 4-stop strategy because, as MS said, "otherwise we might have had to pass on the track." Gawd! If anything shows the problem with F1, it was that comment! It ain't racing, its a race to AVOID racing!

    The Ferraristone is so superior right now that they can win on a 4-stopper, literally throwing away about 15 seconds just to avoid having to race on the track. Ruebens could work his way up from 10th and pass a Renault on a track where passing is all but impossible.

    There never was a race. The inevitable just took a little longer to become apparent.
  • 07-06-2004, 06:56 PM

    Go Rubens!

    I think he is going to smoke Mike in a race head to head this year. I bet Ferrari is going to tell him to back off and he is going to tell them to kissoff.
  • 07-06-2004, 03:00 PM

    Reubens Pass

    that was something!!!!

    Not over till it's over.

    Trulli must be furious!!!! I guess his Michelin tires gave out, and Reubens saw the opportunity and went for the opening.

    Heartbreaker for Trulli.
  • 07-06-2004, 02:16 PM

    its all relative

    95% of the race wasn't even a race, it was a freakin parade lap. so what if it was the most exciting race of the season? it was still a boring parade that came down to pit stops in the end. compared to other road racing, formula one is a complete bore.
    try watching a motogp motorcycle race for excitement. the brazilian gp that ran on sunday had me on the edge of my seat the entire time. that is the kind of excitement and racing that formula one should try to emulate.
  • 07-06-2004, 12:11 PM

    Yup: Well said...and Cosmos' post as well !!!!

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  • 07-06-2004, 11:44 AM

    I agree. This was the most interesting race

    so far this season. It came very close to a total upset with a Renault 1-3 finish, even a 2-3 finish. Rubens made a very "Juan Pablo-ish" move at the end there. So, who was saying the he doesn't have the fire anymore? :-)<html>
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  • 07-06-2004, 11:15 AM

    That's crazy talk! That race was great. Ruebens

    passing for third on the last obviously weren't paying attention. I thought for what formula 1 is these days, that was the best race I've seen in a while.
  • 07-05-2004, 11:47 PM

    Much better, I see your point...........

    I honestly think they are a little late coming up with changes in the reg's. I am thinking more on the lines of car and or wing height or
    smaller displacement but I would hate to see the technology leave.
  • 07-05-2004, 11:16 PM

    i agree

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  • 07-05-2004, 09:37 PM

    My concerns are not Ferrari related...

    MS is the best of his era & Ferrari clearly has the best cars. The only objection I have to MS and Ferrari is the perception they use politics and/or their power as the premier team to massage the \"system\" to favor them, even when their superiority makes such issues moot. I\'m no MS \"fan\" but he rightfully ranks in the class of the greatest, based upon the results he\'s generated and periodic displays of raw driving talent.

    That said, MS and Ferrari\'s dominence, at some point, will gravely hurt the sport. What should be done to facilitate competition.The case can be made that keeping the formula where it is (as to engine, car design etc) actually increases costs and make it more difficult to compete with a team that possesses big advantages. The Pareto Principle (aka 80/20 rule) holds that incrememtal improvements are harder to create and much more expensive as processes mature. If Ferrari is 1 sec per lap faster than the \"best of the rest\" on tracks that run 75 sec per lap, the gap is less than 2% yet that 2% can and will cost tens of millions to bridge. IMO, the sport will be better off to try to have these funds spent in a more visible way (turbos competing with non-turbos as an example) v. microscopic improvements that cannot be seen nor understood.

    Loosing another team or two will be a big problem. For the sake of discussion, assume MS and Ferrari is a dominent as in \'04 for the next 2 or 3 years. What will THAT do to the sport?RichardM///3
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