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Sakae

2018 F1 season - discussion

375 posts in this topic

Who is Sergio Marchionne and what does he know about F1? Really?

The guy is an accountant who grew up in Canada. How many years has he been involved in F1?

In contrast, how many F1 championship cars has Ross Brawn been involved with between Benetton, Ferrari and his own team?  

 

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1 hour ago, Ruslan said:

Who is Sergio Marchionne and what does he know about F1? Really?

The guy is an accountant who grew up in Canada. How many years has he been involved in F1?

In contrast, how many F1 championship cars has Ross Brawn been involved with between Benetton, Ferrari and his own team?  

Mr. Marchionne is a man who is currently carrying a big stick, and he can inflict a lot of pain, should he deemed that situation demands it. His will should count for something. Who RB was in his past is irrelevant to the future of F1. He is not a one who is schooled in hybrids, and it is hard to say how much he understands this technology. Some of his recent rhetoric gave me pause.

BTW, BE has his own assessment who RB was in his role as an engineer, and how much he actually contributed himself to the cars of fame he was affiliated with. You would be surprised.

It's hard these days to separate the truth from chaff. 

Edited by Sakae

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Is Sergio Marchionne really an expert on the DNA of F1?

Or......are all of his pronouncements entirely due to his interest in maintaining a competitive advantage for Ferrari? Is his "big stick" being used for the interest of F1 (and its DNA) or is it an entirely self-serving agenda?

 

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4 April 2018, 08:00 (CEST)

I am not sure that LM knows what DNA of the F1 is. Before we defame SM, we need to dust off part of relevant history. Take group of people like Whiting, Todt, BE, MM, RD, CW, add Brawn (in MB), RBR, and many others. All of those people should have F1 DNA tattooed on their liver, yet examine their contribution to rise of current situation. Their self interest took over, whilst they all were at the birth of situation that has now escalated to current level, DNA or not, they couldn't care less.  It may give to some people satisfaction pointing fingers, however I think more pragmatic approach should be topic on the table, which is how to scale back some of the impediments they created.

I think there is more substance in a column people agreed on, than topics they are at war with. Right now - as we read in print - it is process how to manage transitional change which is under scrutiny, at least that's how I understand it. Perhaps spend our energy on solving the issues of the day, rather than dream of returning into yesteryears. As a life long fan of the sport, I have my on views, and that's all what it is. Subject (a page back) was described in more specific terms, and there is no point repeating it all. To define future (denotes character of the F1 series), one needs to know product specifications. Brawn said he is working on it, so we wait. I wish however I would know where Renault and Honda stand on those issues. Renult is for less expensive sport, Honda was not yet quoted in public about this subject.

Endless wars.

Edited by Sakae

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16 hours ago, Ruslan said:

Who is Sergio Marchionne and what does he know about F1? Really?

The guy is an accountant who grew up in Canada. How many years has he been involved in F1?

In contrast, how many F1 championship cars has Ross Brawn been involved with between Benetton, Ferrari and his own team?  

 

Sergio Marchionne is a lawyer by training, his first managerial position was as Head of Legal at SGS, if I remember correctly. He knows nothing of F1 but in fairness F1 has a very straightforward formula that anyone can understand: unrestricted speed with technically advanced cars. That's what made F1 great. Then the enginners gained some power and we ended up with the silly rules that we have today, rules designed by engineers for the benefit of other engineers. I reaspect Ross Brawn for his achivements as an engineer but when I ear him talk about what F1 should be like my heart bleeds

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the silly rules that we have today, rules designed by engineers for the benefit of other engineers.

Strategy group had mechanism for saving engineers from themselves.

FOM - 6 votes. FiA - 6 votes.

Silly engineers - 6 votes which could have been overruled by 12 opposing votes.

FiA, instead conspiring with MB, could have drawn in others by equal measure, and halt disaster in making. 

End of the story. So, what happened?

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1 hour ago, Sakae said:

Strategy group had mechanism for saving engineers from themselves.

FOM - 6 votes. FiA - 6 votes.

Silly engineers - 6 votes which could have been overruled by 12 opposing votes.

FiA, instead conspiring with MB, could have drawn in others by equal measure, and halt disaster in making. 

End of the story. So, what happened?

who were the FOM's and FIA's attendees? were they engineers by any chance?

Anyway, in the good old days the sport was governed by (ex) drivers, now how many (ex) drivers have we got among the bosses of the various teams? We have RBR (Marko, who was one of the fastest sports car drivers of his day, and Horner, and ex F3000 racer with very little success), Mercedes (Toto Wolff was a "shopkeeper" and the great Niki Lauda who seems to me to be only an ambassadot for Mercedes and not a proper executive) and Renault (Prost, who again isn't the one pulling the strings, is a legend) and I don't remember many others. Sure Todt was a co-driver in rallying but who else? Even Bernie had some first hand racing experience, these days they all have marketing or engineering backgrounds

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Quoting BE, the person he credits for introduction of hybrids into F1 is actually his friend, one MM (a lawyer). :P

Edited by Sakae

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4 hours ago, Sakae said:

Quoting BE, the person he credits for introduction of hybrids into F1 is actually his friend, one MM (a lawyer). :P

no one is perfect

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8 hours ago, Publius Cornelius Scipio said:

...unrestricted speed with technically advanced cars...

And I would argue that this is not the DNA of F1. In fact, I was already thinking about starting a separate thread on the subject.

In 1961 F1 went to the 1.5 liter engine. That was for safety. It is clear that from that point forward (and I could make the argument that it was much earlier than that), that speed was restricted, and has been since.

In the 1970s F1 banned movable aerodynamic devices and then banned vacuum cleaners at the rear of the car. At that point, technological advance was hindered. But it was the early 90s when they banned active suspension that F1 was now less technologically advanced than some road cars. With road cars now having active suspensions, four turning wheels, self-driving features, adjustable aerodynamic devices, etc......they are often more advanced than F1 cars. F1 cars are technologically advanced (but less so than some road cars), they are the cutting edge of technology in only some places, they are not particularly relevant to modern road cars, and they are speed restricted and have been for decades.

So yea....what is the DNA of F1?

 

 

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5 hours ago, Sakae said:

Quoting BE, the person he credits for introduction of hybrids into F1 is actually his friend, one MM (a lawyer). :P

Mosley was a driver who did race in F2 before he went and helped establish March Engineering (he is the M in March).

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DNA? In a word - exclusivity (for me). No other series was ever like F1. GP racing has uniqueness in every technological or sporting aspects. It oozing with excesses.

Dr. Zetsche:

Quote

“Formula 1 plays on some of the most fundamental human emotions: passion (for your favorite team or driver), dislike (for the other teams), agony (over a lost race) or euphoria (when it goes well) – along with the sensory experience that comes from the speed of the cars and roar of the engines. Formula 1 can provide everything one needs for a perfectly entertaining weekend.

 

Edited by Sakae

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Really....exclusivity?

Was F1 exclusive in the 1970s, when everyone but one team was using Cosworth engines and Hewland transmissions?

Was F1 exclusive in the 1950s when all the various small manufacturers, racers and garagistas were entering F1?

Was F1 exclusive when Bobby Unser showed up for a race and qualified a Sprint Car.

 

I am not sure exclusivity is in F1's DNA, although it might have been in Bernie Ecclestone's and Max Mosley's.  

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5 April 2018, 06:40 (CEST)

On second thought, to insist on F1 possessing DNA properties is rather unfortunate. GP racing evolved with time and technology of the day, call it whatever you wish, BE at later day name it F1. DNA definition you seek assumes that F1 has some fundamental, unchangeable characteristics, which itself is not exactly suitable description of sport we are talking about. GP racing is technology dependent, and we do not race horse buggies. The only characteristics which remained more or less the same in this sport over past century are drivers competing with open c#ckpit racing cars, which are driven in abnormal speeds in closed track loops. Membership exclusivity has been IMO part of the deal, as not everyone could - or can - afford to participate. Some came trying to defy its cost and left bankrupt. It was true then as it is now. After all, the old joke is not being repeated for nothing. (How to make a million in F1? You start with a billion in your account...)  

Edited by Sakae

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11 hours ago, Ruslan said:

And I would argue that this is not the DNA of F1. In fact, I was already thinking about starting a separate thread on the subject.

In 1961 F1 went to the 1.5 liter engine. That was for safety. It is clear that from that point forward (and I could make the argument that it was much earlier than that), that speed was restricted, and has been since.

In the 1970s F1 banned movable aerodynamic devices and then banned vacuum cleaners at the rear of the car. At that point, technological advance was hindered. But it was the early 90s when they banned active suspension that F1 was now less technologically advanced than some road cars. With road cars now having active suspensions, four turning wheels, self-driving features, adjustable aerodynamic devices, etc......they are often more advanced than F1 cars. F1 cars are technologically advanced (but less so than some road cars), they are the cutting edge of technology in only some places, they are not particularly relevant to modern road cars, and they are speed restricted and have been for decades.

So yea....what is the DNA of F1?

 

 

Interesting, let me articulate my point

The 1961 example IMHO is very fitting: they had to reduce costs and came up with a formula that to my knowledge is almost universally remembered as a failure, no one remembers the cars from that luckily short era when talking about the golden age of F1. F1 was at a crossroad back then and they came up with the wrong answer to the right question, it happens in every walk of life and I don't blame them for that. But please remember that in a few years time they moved to 3 litre naturally aspired engine on cars weighting less than 500 kg. The emphasis was back to the engine. Formula 1 has been throughout its history primarily an engine formula, because a screaming V12 or a thundering V8 has much more allure and mystique than a puny V6.

The 3 litre formula allowed the expansion and the success of the 70s. Obviously technology was moving on and so they came up with new ideas, the problem is that those ideas were not always very easy to implement or they were dangerous (for the safety standards of the cars and tracks of the day). You rightly quote movable aerodynamic devices and the vacuum cleaner, if my memory is correct the first was banned because in those day the technology was not safe enough (and when they introduced the DRS a few years ago many people still thought that the technology was not reliable enough and that might create a danger) the second because it was spitting stones into the cars behind and everyone still had memory of what happened to poor Helmut Marko who lost an eye when he was hit by a stone launched by the car in front of him. But that it not enough, in those years they also banned wing cars, again they were going too fast in some places for the tracks and for the chassis that they had at the time, etc. In those era F1 cars were not less advanced than road cars, they were much ahead because aero was starting to have a significant impact, they were using a great deal of composites, they managed to come up with many significant ideas (later banned) such water injection for the turbos (and they managed to build turbo engines producing 1200 hp without exploding whereas only a few years before they could hardly get to 650) or devices to beat the minimum height criteria, etc. In a sense the 70s and the 80s saw a much bigger technology leap than in recent years, nowadays they are mostly fine tuning ideas that have been around for some decades.

But back then F1 was still mostly about the engine, as if had been the case for most of F1's history. And F1 cars have always been the state of the art of motorsport technology (sure, sport cars were faster during the late 60s and early 70s but that was because they didn't have open wheels, a Ferrari 312PB, for example, was the very same car as the Ferrari 312B plus some bodywork, if you check the sport cars of the mid 70s, be it March, Lola, Toj, Mirage, etc they are all described as F1 cars with bodywork). then things changed and aerodynamics became ever more important but we lost some of the mystique of the great cars of the past because almost everyone can understand how a big screaming engine works whereas very few people, even among the die hard fans, can truly understand how aerodynamics work. 

finally I think that it's only natural that the manufacturers care a lot about the engines and maybe less so about the aerodynamics: they have to sell road cars on the back of the allure brought by their F1 cars, adding a fancy rear diffuser to a road car doesn't do much to increase sales, introducing a V8 engine that produces 140 bhp per litre does. I think that explains why Marchionne has taken that stance, he knows that F1 helps him sell cars if F1 is relevant, or if it is seen as somehow relevant or related, to his road cars. And being a sound businessman he understands that to sell the product "F1" it needs to be simple and understandable by the man on the street and not only by people with a PhD in physics 

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10 hours ago, Sakae said:

5 April 2018, 06:40 (CEST)

On second thought, to insist on F1 possessing DNA properties is rather unfortunate. GP racing evolved with time and technology of the day, call it whatever you wish, BE at later day name it F1. DNA definition you seek assumes that F1 has some fundamental, unchangeable characteristics, which itself is not exactly suitable description of sport we are talking about. GP racing is technology dependent, and we do not race horse buggies. The only characteristics which remained more or less the same in this sport over past century are drivers competing with open c#ckpit racing cars, which are driven in abnormal speeds in closed track loops.....

I agree with you up until the discussion on "membership exclusivity."

 

 

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7 hours ago, Publius Cornelius Scipio said:

Interesting, let me articulate my point....

 

Nice post. I would argue that the shark nose Ferrari of 1961 is pretty damn iconic and one of my favorite F1 cars of all time.

 

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17 minutes ago, Ruslan said:

Nice post. I would argue that the shark nose Ferrari of 1961 is pretty damn iconic and one of my favorite F1 cars of all time.

 

sure it looks great but it doesn't sound very special and it's really slow, and to my knowledge everyone was glad when they got rid of the 1.5 litre formula

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5 hours ago, Publius Cornelius Scipio said:

sure it looks great but it doesn't sound very special and it's really slow, and to my knowledge everyone was glad when they got rid of the 1.5 litre formula

Never heard one, but fast enough to kill one of its drivers. Had 190 HP, which is less than what I drive nowadays. 

Now, I am curious, how many drivers died racing from 1956-60, vice 1961-1965, vice 1966-1970? May do a count when I have time. 

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On 4/5/2018 at 9:49 AM, Publius Cornelius Scipio said:

... Marchionne... knows that F1 helps him sell cars if F1 is relevant, or if it is seen as somehow relevant or related, to his road cars. And being a sound businessman he understands that to sell the product "F1" it needs to be simple and understandable by the man on the street and not only by people with a PhD in physics 

Your analysis impress me. It indicates that Marchionne actually does have a good idea about the DNA of formula one. At least the DNA of all Ferrari F ones. But my guess is that forMercedes the concept of making highly advanced technology work flawlessly in a wildly competitive environment means more than the good old raw power of a naturally aspirated engine. Still Mercedes wants Ferrari to stay in the sport, so that they have a famous, legendary and very expensive automobile brand to dominate publicly on weekends.

By the way - DNA is something that naturally mutate and therefore adapt to the needs of current times :-). The DNA in us is the DNA that survived. Not the DNA for a future.

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6 April 2018, 10:28 (CEST) - There is only a small hiccup with ...being a sound businessman he understands that to sell the product "F1" it needs to be simple and understandable by the man on the street...

Whilst it might be true with Alfa Romeo platform, I am not so sure that Joe Sixpack has enough coins to purchase Ferrari as MB-AMG and Ferrari are both having different audiences to the one served by Renault or Honda. Whether Joe Sixpack understand rules of strong arm in F1 paddock is not as much important as is whether better off and better educated potential clientele wants to watch it. Ferrari wants to beat Mercedes somewhat more than d#ck&Harry challenger from back alley garage. 

Edited by Sakae

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11 hours ago, Ruslan said:

Never heard one, but fast enough to kill one of its drivers. Had 190 HP, which is less than what I drive nowadays. 

Now, I am curious, how many drivers died racing from 1956-60, vice 1961-1965, vice 1966-1970? May do a count when I have time. 

they were close in power to a Formula Junior, nevertheless they were still dangerous, the problem was not only power, those cars were dangerous because the driver had no protection whatsoever, they were prone to sudden catastrophic failures, the drivers were sitting in a bathtub full of highly flammable aviation fuel (am I correct in remembering that they used aviation fuel? I might be mistaken on this, anyway). So a lot of drivers were killed, but a lot of drivers died during that era in junior formulae despite the fact that they had "slow" (in relative terms, of course) cars. Just the other day I was reading a facebook page about Geki Russo and he died in an horrible crash that killed 3 drivers despite it being a F3 race

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1 hour ago, Robert Rick said:

Your analysis impress me. It indicates that Marchionne actually does have a good idea about the DNA of formula one. At least the DNA of all Ferrari F ones. But my guess is that forMercedes the concept of making highly advanced technology work flawlessly in a wildly competitive environment means more than the good old raw power of a naturally aspirated engine. Still Mercedes wants Ferrari to stay in the sport, so that they have a famous, legendary and very expensive automobile brand to dominate publicly on weekends.

By the way - DNA is something that naturally mutate and therefore adapt to the needs of current times :-). The DNA in us is the DNA that survived. Not the DNA for a future.

Many people still believe that the DNA of Ferrari lies in a big V12, so in a sense things do evolve

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11 hours ago, Ruslan said:

Now, I am curious, how many drivers died racing from 1956-60, vice 1961-1965, vice 1966-1970? May do a count when I have time. 

1956 - 1960 9 (Castellotti, Andrews, O'Connor, Musso, Collins, Lewis-Evans, Unser, Cortner, Schell, Bristow, Stacey)

1961 - 1965 6 (Summers, Cabianca, von Trips, Rodriguez, Hocking, de Beaufort)

1966 - 1970 8 (Taylor, Bandini, Anderson, Schlesser, Mitter, Brain, Courage, Rindt) 

This list includes Indy as well as non championship races and testing. 

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