Posted on May 12, 2010
James Allen on F1 – The official James Allen website on F1 | Formula 1 / F1 | Page 218

The Spanish Grand Prix at the weekend was a relatively straight forward affair in strategy terms with the main decisions on tyres pretty clear with little room for variation. But there were some key decisions to be made on the timing of the pit stop, with positions to be won and lost and the second set of tyres to be maintained over a long period. Bridgestone brought with them the soft and hard tyres from their range and it was clear that the soft was the better qualifying tyre. This meant that all the top ten started the race on More…

Posted on May 11, 2010
James Allen on F1 – The official James Allen website on F1 | Formula 1 / F1 | Page 218

McLaren boss Martin Whitmarsh today spoke of his concern that there would be chaos and controversy during the first part of qualifying in Monaco this weekend, due to the enlarged field and the speed differential between the fastest and slowest cars. With the three new teams this year regularly around six seconds off the pace in qualifying and 24 cars packed onto the tight streets of Monaco for the first 20 minute session, Whitmarsh predicts trouble. It is possible that one of the front runners might get blocked, miss the cut to get out of Q1 and be forced to More…

Posted on May 11, 2010
James Allen on F1 – The official James Allen website on F1 | Formula 1 / F1 | Page 218

Over the weekend I had a chance to chat at length with the new owner of the Renault F1 team, Gerard Lopez, who is a fascinating character. One of the world’s leading investors in technology companies, he was a founder investor in Skype and is bringing some fresh thinking to this sport. I will post separately on the wider topics of our conversation, which include his plans for Renault, how he is helping F1 engage with the internet and mobile phones and a whole new business model for an F1 team. But the eye catching headline from the chat was More…

Posted on May 10, 2010
James Allen on F1 – The official James Allen website on F1 | Formula 1 / F1 | Page 218

Felipe Massa looked rather dejected all weekend. He was asked after the race by Italian colleagues whether this was because of the rumours that Ferrari was thinking of replacing him with Robert Kubica, “I’m not happy because the whole winter test I was 110% happy with the car the way I drive. I started the first race and I was 120% happy with the car. We did a great job in the first race. The last four races have been harder tyres than Bahrain and I can’t use them like I want, I need to understand, I’m a little bit More…

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Posted on May 10, 2010
James Allen on F1 – The official James Allen website on F1 | Formula 1 / F1 | Page 218

F1 in Schools, the educational competition backed by Bernie Ecclestone and the F1 teams, is to hold its World Championship finals in Singapore, in the week leading up to the Singapore Grand Prix in September. It will be the culmination of a series of competitions involving an estimated 6 million children worldwide. F1 in Schools challenges students to use software to design, build and race a miniature Formula 1 car made from balsa wood and powered by a single compressed air cylinder. It has the support of leading F1 engineers including Ross Brawn, Adrian Newey, Sam Michael and Mike Gascoyne. More…

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Posted on May 10, 2010
James Allen on F1 – The official James Allen website on F1 | Formula 1 / F1 | Page 218

Jenson Button had a frustrating afternoon in the Spanish Grand Prix, losing a place to Michael Schumacher at the first pit stop and failing to pass him for the remainder of the race. Button scored ten points for fifth place and retained his lead in the world championship heading into this weekend’s Monaco Grand Prix, but his comments surprised senior figures in the Mercedes team and many onlookers. Button criticised Schumacher for his passing move as Button exited the pits, “”He turned in and if I didn’t back out of it we would have crashed,” he said. “So he didn’t More…

Posted on May 10, 2010
James Allen on F1 – The official James Allen website on F1 | Formula 1 / F1 | Page 218

In the aftermath of yesterday’s Grand Prix, everybody was focussed on Mark Webber’s stunning weekend and the last minute heartbreak of Lewis Hamilton, who had second place in the bag when his left front tyre blew, possibly as result of a wheel rim problem. But the most interesting story for me yesterday was Sebastian Vettel’s ability to overcome a host of technical problems and come though to collect 15 points. Along with the 12 points he salvaged in Bahrain after his spark plug problem, this could prove crucial later in the season. It could be what wins him the championship. More…

Posted on May 9, 2010
James Allen on F1 – The official James Allen website on F1 | Formula 1 / F1 | Page 218

Mark Webber won the Spanish Grand Prix in Barcelona today, crushing the opposition in a Red Bull car they had described all weekend as ‘untouchable.” It is his third Grand Prix win and was one of those weekends where no-one could get near him either in qualifying or the race. It was the 10th time in a row this race has been won from pole position and Webber is the fourth different winner in five races this season. But it wasn’t a perfect day for Red Bull as Sebastian Vettel’s race was compromised by losing a place to Lewis Hamilton More…

Posted on May 9, 2010
James Allen on F1 – The official James Allen website on F1 | Formula 1 / F1 | Page 218

There was a curious incident during qualifying when Fernando Alonso exited his pit garage and almost drove straight into Nico Rosberg. The German braked hard and an accident was avoided, but Rosberg called for a penalty for the Spaniard over the radio and the FIA stewards decided to fine him and the Ferrari team $20,000 for unsafe release. It was a bit like a footballer who calls for a fellow professional to get a yellow card. Operationally it was unusual that there was no Ferrari mechanic in the pit lane in front of the car, looking to see if the More…

Posted on May 9, 2010
James Allen on F1 – The official James Allen website on F1 | Formula 1 / F1 | Page 218

The 12 Formula 1 teams under the banner of FOTA are due to meet this morning (Sunday) in the paddock in Barcelona to discuss a number of subjects of which tyre supply for 2011 is the most burning issue. The teams have said that they want a decision this week. All teams are now deep into the design phase for the 2011 cars and they want to know what tyres they will be running on, particularly if they are to be different from the current ones. At present there are three principle avenues open, including Pirelli, Michelin and Avon. However More…

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