Sunday 8 July 2012

Webber Wins the British Grand Prix

The sun did shine long enough for a dry race at Silverstone today and Webber fought a brilliant strategic race, winning from second on the grid. Webber looked after the tyres and struck a few laps from the end as Alonso was suffering from blistering. Mclaren went Hard Soft Hard with Hamilton doing just eight laps on the softer tyre, but was unable to match the pace of Red Bull and the Ferraris finishing eighth. Button had a disappointing weekend having failed to get beyond Q3, but managed to finish tenth and in the points.

Meanwhile Pastor Maldonado is waiting outside the headmaster’s study after an incident which took Perez’s Sauber off. Maldonado was defending a corner and appeared to lose fraction as Perez challenged around the outside. Maldonado has been involved in some questionable moves this year, but we think this is a racing incident. The over-taker has to expect the defender to push and you are always more exposed overtaking on the outside.

The wet weather meant that the teams would have been stuck on a wet set up and perhaps Mclaren were betting on a wet race to bring Button further up the field. As far as we could see most teams were in the same position, but Lotus seemed to have the pace over McLaren today. Mercedes had a good race but do not seem to be able to make the tyres last.

On the technical front Red Bull have further modified the changes made for Valencia which involved significant changes to the end floor plate which has become the focus for most of the teams. Fro Silverstone they have modified the airflow from the side-pods and exhaust. They have also modified the rear suspension assembly and moved the position of the brake calliper to provide more space for the aero package alterations. Other teams have been concentrating on the front of the car. Mclaren and Ferrari have been tweaking the front wings with even more elements to get broken! Whilst Williams have been increase cooling by altering their front brake assembly. Those F1 Workshop Manuals, must be very big by now.

Thursday 5 July 2012

Marussa Test Driver Injured in Testing

Marussia test driver Maria de Villota is being treated in a Cambridge hospital for what is described as life threatening injuries following a low speed impact with a support truck at Duxford airfield. Witnesses at the scene said that the car slowed down and then accelerated hitting the vehicle.
The accident took place on Tuesday (3 July). As at Thursday 5 July she is described as being in a stable but critical condition and continues to be treated for what appears to be serious head injuries which has resulted in the loss of an eye.
Speaking yesterday Marussia team principle John Booth said "We are grateful for the medical attention that Maria has been receiving and her family would like to thank the Neurological and Plastics surgical teams.”
"However, it is with great sadness that I must report that, due to the injuries she sustained, Maria has lost her right eye. "Maria's care and the wellbeing of her family remain our priority at this time. Her family are at the hospital and we are doing everything possible to support them."
The incident raises questions about the suitability of the location for testing and the UK’s Health and Safety Executive (HSE) are carrying out an investigation which is standard practice in this situation. Although we need to understand the circumstances surrounding the incident we would also expect the FIA to study the findings of the HSE to see what lessons can be learnt. The FIA continue to look at ways of improving cockpit safety following incidents involving Massa and the sad loss of Henry Surtess in an F2 race.