Analysis: Russian GP to continue trend of recent races? Big weekend for Williams?
Insight
Williams Russian Grand Prix 2015
Posted By: James Allen  |  26 Apr 2016   |  1:20 pm GMT  |  128 comments

This weekend’s fourth round of the F1 World Championship at Sochi is likely to be a fast and furious affair with the teams defaulting to the softest tyres in the range on the low-grip surface.

While this will suit teams like Ferrari and Haas, who have had success with aggressive strategies so far, it will mean a change of philosophy for Williams, that has defaulted to the medium tyre at several races, to their cost. We are unlikely to see much running on the medium in the race as it is much slower than the soft and supersoft compounds.

This is an important weekend for Williams. The team has performed very strongly at Sochi the last two seasons, with Valtteri Bottas qualifying in the top three on both occasions and finishing on the podium in 2014. His challenge last year ended in a collision with Kimi Raikkonen, although Felipe Massa in the other car finished fourth.

Felipe Massa

Williams has fallen behind Red Bull this season; the Renault power unit has improved enough to take the superior chassis and aerodynamics of the Red Bull ahead of Williams. Daniel Ricciardo and Daniil Kvyat are also driving well, especially the Australian, who has been very fast and consistent this year. Kvyat had a strong run to the podium in China, with a determined move on Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel at the start and indication of how determined the Russian is to retain his seat next year or at least to attract another top team to pick him up if Red Bull replaces him with Max Verstappen, as seems probable.

Bottas has not had a great start to the season and so will want to make his mark this weekend. Qualifying will be absolutely crucial for his race effort, but the team will have to plan and execute aggressively against a top class strategy team at Red Bull. Ricciardo’s ace up the sleeve is his ability to make the tyres last while maintaining strong pace. If Bottas and Massa get ahead of him, he can use a variety of tricks including the early undercut to put pressure on them. It will be hard for Williams to beat Red Bull this weekend, given perfect reliability on both sides.

Strategy wise, the race will probably be less diverse from a strategy point of view than the three opening events as the track has very low tyre degradation and wear, so a set of soft tyres will last around 40 laps and that means fewer pit stops.

Russian Grand Prix – the key numbers

Mercedes-Benz currently has a 100 per cent success rate at the Russian Grand Prix. Lewis Hamilton’s two wins in the first two races to be held at Sochi stand alongside Georgy Suvorin and Willy Scholl’s triumphs for Benz in the race in 1913 and 1914. Although it should be noted that the two twentieth century victories came before Benz was merged with Daimler in 1926.

Mercedes also clinched the constructors’ championship at Sochi in both 2014 and 2015 – it cannot do so this weekend as the race has switched from its previous October slot on the calendar.

Mercedes Russian Grand Prix 2015

Nico Rosberg heads to Sochi with the chance of equalling Michael Schumacher’s record of seven wins in a row for Ferrari from the 2004 season. But even if he does win this weekend, the championship leader would still be behind the overall record of nine wins in succession, which is jointly held by Alberto Ascari and Sebastian Vettel from the 1952-1953 and 2013 seasons respectively.

Rosberg took pole and was leading in Sochi last year when a throttle problem caused him to fall behind Lewis Hamilton and then retire from the race.

Speaking ahead of this year’s event, Rosberg explained he was looking forward to returning to Sochi, where he finished second in 2014 despite an early pitstop for new tyres that dropped him to the back of the pack.

Nico Rosberg

He said: “I can’t wait to get to Sochi. I was looking good all weekend last year until a technical problem put me out of the race and I had great fun fighting from the back the year before, so I know I’m competitive at this track.”

Hamilton has only led one lap so far in 2016 compared to the 119 he had notched up by this stage in 2015. But the world champion will equal Niki Lauda’s F1 start total of 171 races this weekend.

The British driver has also never taken the title when he hasn’t won at least one of the first three races during his F1 career so far.

Sebastian Vettel

Ferrari can claim its 700th podium finish if one of its drivers finishes on the podium this weekend in Sochi. The Italian team has scored 224 race wins, 248 second places and 227 thirds throughout its history in F1. McLaren is second on the all-time podium list with 485, but the British team has only added two rostrum visits to its total since the end of the 2012 season.

After he recovered to finish second in China, Vettel is now tied with Raikkonen on 81 podiums, while at McLaren, Fernando Alonso’s 11 races without a top ten result matches the worst run of his F1 career.

Fernando Alonso

Alonso’s previous worst set of results came in his first 11 races for Minardi back in 2001. The Spaniard would not be on such a streak had he not been given a five-second time penalty after the 2015 Russian race for not respecting track limits, which dropped him from 10th to 11th in the final results.

Max Verstappen is the only driver to finish every racing lap other than Rosberg, Hamilton and Daniel Ricciardo so far in 2016. The Dutchman also became the first ever Toro Rosso driver to score points in first three races of an F1 season after he finished eighth in Shanghai last time out.

Max Verstappen

Are you looking forward to the Russian Grand Prix? Do you think Williams can continue its good form in Sochi? Leave your thoughts in the comment section below or head over to the JAonF1 Facebook page for more discussion.

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1

Big weekend for Vet after his tantrum in China. Kimi has the edge on him on the new car at the moment. Not great for the ‘lead’ driver. Rumour that Ferrari are bringing a new front wing as well as an updated engine. Hope they are on par with the Merc. Cmon the redmen!

2

O/T but regarding the 2017 rules, why is F1 so hell bent on committing suicide??

Literally everyone on the grid be it drivers or engineers are saying the same thing… Adding more aero downforce will make it more difficult for cars to follow thus making the racing worse.

By all means make the cars a bit faster, but NOT BY AERO, by MECHANICAL GRIP.

Keep the cars similar but give them brilliant, fatter tyres that negate the aero turbulence. Unfortunately I can almost guarantee this won’t happen.

We’ve had pretty decent racing so far this year and they’re all set to ruin it next year with the rubbish they are apparently drawing up. No other sport in the world manages to &£%$ everything up so regularly.

3

NickH, the cars will look a lot better, and hopefully they can simplify the front wings.

4

NickH, wider cars and tyres = more mechanical grip.

5

Though also more weight and more drag.

6

NickH and KRB. I think the benefits will outweigh the penalties. The cars will look a lot better and should be less nervous in the corners, the wider track and tyres will give an obvious boost to mechanical grip and hopefully they will take the opportunity to simplify the front wing designs.

7

Tim, I hope so. I just don’t see the need to add more aero.

Give them nice juicy wide tyres, maybe relax the fuel flow a little and these cars will be the fastest ever in Formula 1. If they add more aero downforce we will see terrible racing.

8

NickH, Hopefully they will take the opportunity to simplify the front wings. the cars will look a lot better though!

9

I think the wider track cars will be more stable for the drivers and better looking than the 1.8m cars we have now. I also think that the inevitable increase in downforce could be offset by making the front wings simpler, do we need all those winglets and flip ups? It seems obvious that relying on the front wing for significant amounts of downforce will lead to the problem of cars struggling to follow each other closely.

10

NickH, I think if they just make the front wings simpler it would solve a lot of the problems. Do we need all those little winglets? I am really looking forward to seeing the wider cars, the 1.8m narrow track cars we have now have always looked wrong to me.

11

NickH, The wider body would produce more downforce, but I’m sure they could counteract this with less complex front wings. In my completely uneducated opinion the problem of the cars struggling to follow each other is caused by all those little winglets being very susceptible to turbulent air. I am very much in favour of the wider cars, the narrow 1.8m cars we have now have always looked wrong to me, I think the wider track will produce cars that are less nervous, and will allow the drivers to push harder.

12

It’s sweet that Nico thinks he “fought from the back” in 2014, as i remember it he ruined his tyres by making a mistake, then made his one and only pit stop early and simply waited for the others to pit. I guess he isn’t alone in trying to put a positive spin on things, but the fact is he screwed up, and only got back to second because of the extremely low tyre degradation at Sochi.

13

Yeah, we’re still waiting to see how Rosberg would fare, starting from the back. Lewis started P20 at GER14, P22 at HUN14, and P22 at CHN16. Finished P3, P3 & P7 respectively.

Nico has only once been off the first 2 rows since 2014 (though he did need to start SIN14 from PL).

14

& I think he had a real chance to beat Nico at Hungary on different tyres. That race ended Nicos favouritism from the team & coaching ban marked a distinct turnaround in “fortunes”. 2014 is where Lewis became a great on a number of fronts.

15

He did beat him Elie. 3rd to Rosberg’s 4th.

16

I dont understand this fascination with Williams. Yes they should be closer at Sochi with their power down that monsterous straight and traction out of the lower speed corners, that said they may still struggle with grip and I feel they may fall prey to Red Bull who must be feeling buoyed by their China success..

Ferrari have spent 3 tokens on the ICE so Im hoping they will take the challenge right to the Mercs but I feel if Hamilton has a normal weekend he might just make it 3 in a row. Raikkonen appears to have clicked with the SF-16H and was the man to beat at China. Im hoping he takes the charge in anger and gets a long overdue result– Im expecting a very tight quali battle between all 4 merc/ferr cars. I expect a very close fight with the RBR pair and I have to say Kvyat is the guy whose future Im interested in because hes
just going about his business as a determined racer not caught up with being hip and cool and make no mistake – he’s holding his own against one of the best racers this year!-

17

I started to like Kvyat from his first season at Toro Rosso. His raw speed is incredible. As Ricciardo stated – does he have that next little bit, that level of maturity and racecraft that will then bring that next point – if he could he would be best man in F1 in three or four seasons time. 🙂 🙂

18

…” caught up with being hip and cool…”
Do you think this is why Lewis has lost his focus?

19

No actually I was thinking Ricciardo always tweeting everything from car dancing to bad haircuts. Lewis won 2 titles doing what hes doing.

20

No,it sits well with Lewis and hes won his last 2 titles that way .Tbh its Ricciardo whose trying too hard to be cool and thing is he doesnt need to. Car dancing & bad haircut tweets, – its important for these guys to “get out there” so he can do what ever he likes but it just comes across a bit fake & too much to me and i would hate for him to get lost in that hype. Besides quiet ones on camera arent necessarily quiet off camera.

21
Lakerfoureyes

Elie,
We’ll have to agree to disagree. Lewis only really started his selfie world tour after he won his second title, and I think that all started to catch up with him by mid season last year.
As for Danny Ric -like him or lump him, he’s become one of the most popular drivers on the grid and the media and fans can’t get enough of him. I think him “getting out there” is more media driven than self promotion, but you could say anyone with a social network profile is guilty of self promotion. He’s also 5 years younger than Lewis and is growing as his profile grows.
This will utimately come down to who you like versus who I like, but i consider the guy who is attempting to re-invent himself in his 30’s, with one eye on his next career as the try-hard-fake.

22

I like Dan I really do, but car dancing..lip syncing. honestly girls and kids maybe..

At the end of the day his racing will do the talking and fact is social media is the best way of boosting profile..he just has to be careful he does it right o/wise it works against him

23

Hamilton’s third championship does seem to have given him a more relaxed outlook, some might say zen like. He looks as if he’s in a good place within himself with his childhood goals achieved, financial independence and what seems a fulfilling private life. But is that demeanour really the best for him as a race driver. Dickie Bird once said if he had to pick a batsman to bat for his life he would pick Boycott, for his stubbornness, determination and his will to win. If i had to pick a driver to drive for my life i would pick Hamilton, but not this Hamilton, i’d want the Hamilton thats edgy sometimes bitter and feels the world is against him. I’d want him out on track spitting venom with a point to prove.
He needs a good result this weekend to stay in contention with Nico, but i feel a poor weekend in Russia may result in him having to start defending questions about his focus.

24

Joe Bloggs, I see your point, but the venom spitting Lewis is more likely to make a mistake, while the serene Lewis still has enough of an advantage over Nico to beat him without needing any “magic”. Questions about focus? People ask those questions anyway, irrespective of results.

25

“Dickie Bird once said if he had to pick a batsman to bat for his life he would pick Boycott, for his stubbornness, determination and his will to win.”

Dickie’s probably alone on that one.. Boycott was once dropped after making a double hundred because it took him about 3 days.

26

Thats correct he did get dropped for his two days at the crease and 246 not out, single handedly batting India out of the game and a six wicket victory for England but I think that says more about the english selectors than the man. A poor decision that was driven by the sponsors and media for entertainment reasons rather than cricket reasons.

27

“A poor decision that was driven by the sponsors and media for entertainment reasons…”

Welcome to Formula 1!!!

🙂

28
Craig in Manila

No, I don’t think there’s any indication that this will be a “big weekend for Williams”.

Even if they can somehow manage a high-ish qualifying result, I would expect that this will be offset by their (often) poor strategy during races and they’ll end-up somewhere at the back-end of the points wondering what went wrong.

29

I wonder if Pirelli has missed a big opportunity to debut the ultra-soft this weekend. Given the fact that the supersofts lasted over half the race last year I can see a one stop race being the default for just about every team.

30

I was thinking the exact same thing. I think all we can hope for is that Ferrari and Red Bull are able to extract more from the supersoft and for longer than the Mercs can. If the track abrasiveness and tyre combinations yield similar degradation as last year then it will be uninteresting when it comes to strategy.
I’m praying for something unusual to happen concerning the tyre deg.

31

The very first sochi race was perhaps the worst F1 race that i have ever seen! last year that was all turned around and it was good race. this year? i would like to think that it will be even better and hopefully, i say it all the time, someone/anyone can get up and beat the mercedes to the podium. take mercedes out of the equation and we have some seriously entertaining races, IMO of course.
ferrari and red bull/williams will be hard at it and that is where our salvation will come from. as for the question re ‘will williams continue the good form? well i would question that, as i don’t think that have showed good form at all. rather disappointing really considering that they have the best engine in the business powering their car.

32

Kenneth, should be a good race, Ferrari have an upgrade so hopefully it will be close at the sharp end. Obviously I am duty bound to argue with you about something, so I will point out that if there was no Mercedes last year, we would have had a similar one team domination from Ferrari.

33

Red Bull may take its first pole and/or victory of the season with that superior chassis.

34

Pastor on the end ???? looks like he’s just crashed the party. Massa and Ricciardo big mates I see ????????. Top blokes.

35

Just guessing – Merc out front and lots of excuses from the rest….. although Ricciardo drove a great race in China and the matt blue cars look great this year. Maybe, just maybe the form will continue, can’t wait to see how RB goes in Monaco.

Would be nice to see Kvyat making Vettel eat his words. F1 needs some spark. I was coming round to Seb, but just when he seemed like he’d turned a corner the German turned into a complete sausage with his embarrassing outburst. And he seems to be making more mistakes this season.

So Lewis/Nico to win and some other cars disappointingly far behind on a dull racetrack.

36

It’s pretty unerring to think that as we head to Sochi, that was the last circuit on which Nico Rosberg DIDN’T win!

37

Did you know, that despite Rosbergs much heralded run of wins – it’s still 22 wins to 16 in Hamiltons favour since they’ve been team mates at Mercedes? Kinda puts things into perspective .

38

I am actually surprised that the difference is not greater. If Rosberg wins again on Sunday he will achieve what less than a handfull have to date. While i am sure he would rather own a WDC, it is still something. Lets hope for a battle for 1st. Whomever the winner. Marc

39

That’s actually closer than I thought. He’s taken close to double the wins in 2014-15. He might need to do the same again this season.

40

C63, and of course three nil to Lewis on championship positions….

41

Did Rosberg drive for McLaren? ????

I jest of course. The extent of jumping to his defence is telling though.

42

Think he meant the 2013-15 seasons. 3-0 as teammates at Mercedes.

43

Do the math NickH!

44

Actually, the last circuit he didn’t win was in Austin. It was also the last circuit he threw a cap.

45

Didn’t Lewis throw the cap first?
Funny how people forget that Nico was waiting at the door to congratulate Lewis on his third WDC before the cap-throwings by both drivers

46

HP, and you know this how? From memory wasn’t Nico sitting on a chair on the opposite side of the table to the door? Wasn’t he resolutely ignoring Lewis? Funny how peoples memories differ isn’t it?

47

TimW,

I remember because i watched the whole thing live on tv.
Nico was waiting by the door, as soon as Lewis came in Nico hugged and congratulated Lewis. After that Nico was sat on his own the couch and Lewis threw the hat at him, Nico did the same.

Funny how peoples memories differ isn’t it?

48

????????

49

HP, yes we all watched in on TV, the thing is you don’t remember it very well. Nico is sitting in a chair in the cool down room, he is not waiting by the door (there is no door), Lewis walks over to the table and yes Nico does get up and congratulate him, but he could hardly do anything else could he? Seb also congratulates Lewis, and then a couple of minutes go by during which time Nico completely ignores Lewis. As the time to go to the podium approaches, Lewis picks up the stack of caps and finding the top one not to be his, he tosses it to Nico who is still sitting in the chair sulking. He then passes Seb’s hat to him as he is standing next to him, and Nico throws his hat at Lewis. Nico’s petulance continued onto the podium, but you have obviously forgotten that.
Forward to 2hrs 5mins for the full incident. https://youtu.be/jQ2r3mpb9aQ

50

Sorry my bad, so Nico wasn’t waiting by the door but he did get up, hugged Lewis, congratulated him then sat back down on the couch. What else do you want him to do?

Just don’t throw hats around, simples.

51

HP, or don’t get grumpy if someone tosses you your hat!

52

“and then a couple of minutes go by during which time Nico completely ignores Lewis.”

And I suppose in the same situation you would have got the party hats out and started singing with Lewis, Tim?!! Honestly..

Rosberg hasn’t lost since ‘Hat-gate’ which I believe says it all.

54

NickH, The point I was making was that your recollection of events preceding “Hatgate” are incorrect. I wouldn’t expect Nico to do anything other than sit in his chair trying to decide if he could get away with blaming Lewis or a gust of wind for him losing the race, but this idea of yours that Nico was waiting by the door to congratulate Lewis is clearly nonsense.
Lewis hasn’t lost to Nico in the championship standings since they became team mates, I believe that says it all.

55

Haha Tim, fair play my friend. In fact I laughed hard at the ‘gust of wind’.

Jokes aside, you make a good point. Nico has never beaten Lewis over a season. Don’t get me wrong, I rate Lewis as one of the fastest ever in F1.

But let’s all admit, the season is more fun for everyone if Lewis is being oven a hard time. And I give kudos for Rosberg for giving it a go.

I would be surprised if Lewis comes out on top for 4WDC, but I want it to be a proper fight and I honestly think Nico has upped his game.

Cheers Tim ????

56

And Lewis’ excuse for not winning the last three races of 2015 was “the team is extra warm towards Nico”
excuses, excuses everywhere.

57

HP, what excuses does your favourite driver use when he gets beaten by his team mate?

58

He also said “lewis is the benchmark”

59

I dont have a favourite driver, but since youre reffering to Nico. Last year US gp he said “gust of wind” apart from that this year hes been saying about quali “lewis was faster” in aus, “i thought my final lap was the pole lap but lewis did a better job and got the pole” in bahrain. Hes

60

HP, Heres some quotes from Lewis, after the Spanish GP last year “Nico did a fantastic job” and after last years Austrian GP ” Nico did a fantastic job, and at the end of the day was quicker in the race”. I have plenty more if you’re interested, but i doubt you would be.

61

I have plenty more too mate. And They both have their moments. You brought up the topic of ‘excuses’, not me.
TimW-

Dont be grumpy when someone throws your cap?! Did you really say that? I wouldn’t want anyone to touch my stuff doesn’t matter who! I would have done the same the if I were Nico

62

The cap throw was the signal, he’d had enough.

63

It was also the last circuit he decided he would no longer take *#%$ from Ham.

64

“taking *#%$”

???

Oh you mean Lewis being a better driver and not resorting to underhanded tactics? Yeah what an awful person LH must be…

Being better isn’t giving *#%$, it’s just being better!

😀

65

Haha. No you miss the point Mes.

I was purely referring to Nico being shoved out at turn 1 Austin. I have no problem with Lewis being a good driver.

66

Hahahahaha.

Nick, seriously? Still that one? Did he get a penalty? Or did he do something within the rules that gained him a world championship?

This is F1, it’s not hankie waving!

Fair move, no penalties. Hard racing, I’ll admit but Lewis had the corner.

😀

It’s a bit of a glass house / stones scenario. If you’re going to try and highlight things that Lewis has done to affect Nico, there’s unarguably a lot more fuel to the fire when you look at it the other way around.

Nico has been beaten by the better driver, fairly, on track.

No driving into him, no text massaging his engineer to keep info from his team mate, no parking his car during qualifying to cover off pole, no cap throwing, no backing off during the first corner to push him into the pack, etc.

I’m not calling Lewis a saint by any means but trying to make him out as the bad guy over Nico is absolutely laughable.

67

That seems like an odd time for him to make that decision – he’s been watching the back of Hamiltons cars since they were 14 years old 🙂

68

NickH, he has been saying that for years…

69

He hasn’t been winning 6 races in a row for years though.

Will be very interesting to watch Rosberg shove Hamilton off the track if and when Hamilton tries to go around the outside of him at a first corner.

70

NickH, he tried it at Brazil last year. The difference was Lewis realised it was coming and dropped behind into second place. If Nico had done the same at Suzuka and Austin he would have been P2 at worst , rather than P4 both times.

71

I fell asleep just after “Rosberg has a 12 second lead” when watching China.

Won’t be bothering to watch this weekend.

72

@goggleman

I was going to write a repl…………zzzzzz

73

You missed a pretty good race! I would say most fans (and cameramen) have given up watching the battle for the lead over the past 2 seasons (with a few notable exceptional races), but the mid-field racing this year in particular has been cracking!

74

Bad move, you missed a good race with plenty of overtaking for every position except first, where every car finished.

75

Dear God man, cheer up. You’re alive.

76

You missed a great race then !

77

The thing about the Russia race is some teams get a mysterious turn in form whereas others struggle.

Williams has had good form in Russia likewise, Mclaren has also gone well there with Jenson scoring points on both occasions famously a P4 in 2014.

On the other hand, Red Bull has struggled in Russia however, Horner reckons that will not be the case in time more so Kvyat will have home advantage on his side.

Looking at the front of the grid, there is talk in the paddock that Rosberg may not equal Schumacher’s 7 consecutive wins as number 6 is his lucky number.

As for Ferrari, it will be interesting to see if Vettel can notch the win thereby returning the favour after Rosberg ended Vettel’s winning run at the start of 2014.

Talking about Lewis, he too will be looking to make a record of his own as he hasn’t won the same race in 3 consecutive years.

79

Not sure what the fascination is with Williams – yes this track will suit them but they will struggle with grip & tyre wear. Red Bull should edge them out & this constant bigging up of Ricciardo is getting loathesome- he really doesn’t need it. Besides its no shame for Kvyat if he is dropped as hes gone toe to toe with one of the best out there atm. Maybe 2 Russians at Renault in the future.

Ferrari have spent 3 tokens on the ICE so hopefully they are closer to Mercedes this time and Raikkonen looked the man to beat at China most times. But I expect a resurgent Hamilton to lead the way and very strong fight for P2-6.

80

I think there’s a lot riding on round 4. Lewis has done a fine job of staying upbeat and calm, as well as convincing the world there’s nothing to worry about. When he’s done with F1, I don’t think he should bother with the music thing, he’ll make one heck of a motivational speaker!
There’s also a lot expected of Ferrari, bringing an upgrade so early in the season says a lot. I think it’s now obvious that apart from bad luck, they are not close enough to bother Mercedes on pure pace. They have to show some real intent and improvement, they have to make Mercedes twitch.
Red Bull also could provide some problems for the top 2, with the present form of the car and drivers.

81

*I meant hairpin

82

Raikkonen would have been bang on Rosberg’s Q3 effort if he hadn’t totally ball’sed up the chicane in China. I would argue that’s close.

83

Ive totally lost interest in Williams-not sure what it is..Whilst I dislike Horner Im in awe of that Red Bull chassis. I also hope Kvyat has a great home race but I fear home race responsibilities and expectations can be ultra draining on a driver. I dont understand this constant bigging up of Dan Ricciardo James- he doesnt need it really! – Im an Aussie and love for him to do well but you seem to be on another level ,besides for all its worth even if Kvyat exits the Bulls he can hold his head up as how many people can really go toe to toe with Ricciardo- Maybe we’l see 2 russians at Renault before long.

Ferrari have spent 3 tokens on the ICE for Sochi with the turbo upgrade due Barcelona so it will be interesting if they can match the Mercs. I think the gloves will be off at Ferrari now.’Raikkonen was faster all weekend in China and Quali was quite telling- I actually think hes clicked with the SF16-H and will pose a serious threat every race:

84

James, any idea how long the supersofts will last? RB and Haas are pretty committed to it.

85

The teams pretty much all one-stopped on them last year … think Lewis ran to lap 32-33 on the supersofts, and the rest of the way (20-21 laps) on the softs.

Can’t see the track surface having changed much in a year. The only other variable is temperature difference between a May or October race.

86

James

Is Bottas hurt by new radio clampdown? Have you seen anybody benefitting from the new radio restriction?

87

Kimi.
He knows what he’s doing and works better at his job when left alone to get on with it. Nattering nabobs from the pit wall are his distraction.

88

Ferrari used 3 tokens to upgrade the engine & the new turbo for Sochi, expectation according to the Italian tabloids a 1 & 2 finish for red team.

89

They expect to finish 1-2? Which paper said this?

Yeah, no pressure at all!

On the clock!

90

The Ferrari paper!

91

Realistically they probably need a savage 40 degree heatwave to descend on Sochi at the weekend to finish 1-2.

92

My prediction is Rosberg to win this race. I also predict Rosberg will win the first 8 races of the season with 2nd or 3rd spot being fought between Vettel, Kimi, Ricciardo and Kvyat.
Lewis will then have a monumental task to claw back the lead and just miss out by a few points by the end of the year. Rosberg 2016 WDC.
Of course my opinion is based on zero explanation whatsoever. 😀

93

“triumphs for Benz in the race in 1913 and 1914”.

A few more seasons and Merc will be asking for more money than Ferrari. On historical grounds. They have a better win percentage than the red cars.

All the Red cars have done is turn up.

94

At the end, did Renault get any “historical”money from FOM?
As far as I remember, that was one of stumbling points in their decision to coma back as a manufacturer.

95

Yes, $35million a year I think and that deal runs until 2022, whereas FOM’s deals with Ferrari,Merc,McLaren, Red Bull and Williams runs until 2020.

96

Thanks for the info.
Not long ago on other site (I guess, or aybe even here), there was a article about prize money distibution and I don’t recall seeing Renault there as a beneficiary of any kind.

97

This photo (by Autosport) shows that the payment to Renault hasn’t been made-

http://www.autosport.com/news/report.php/id/123649

98

Or they aren’t getting it? 🙂

99

Come On Lewis “Dunkirk Spirit”???? give it some wellie & get a win????.
Hopefully their won’t be anymore dodgy???? engine or parts failures this time round!! ☝

100

Yeah, would help if his team “mate” didn’t back him into the pack at the first corner too!

101

How naughty of Rosberg.
[Mod] has always been so polite in first corners ????

102

Also an important weekend for Hamilton. Time start clawing back those points.

A clean race and a much needed win is in order to get back on track and release some of the pressure building up in this year’s title race before things getaway from him.

103

A couple of ferraris or a red bull in between woukd help too ????

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