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A new era begins, first car launch dates trickling in....

Michael Schumacher out of coma and leaves Grenoble hospital http://www.jamesallenonf1.com/2014/06/michael-schumacher-out-of-coma-and-leaves-grenoble-hospital/

Red Bull sputters out of Jerez test

JEREZ, Spain (AP) — Red Bull's frustrating start to the Formula One calendar came to a sputtering halt as car problems forced it out of the opening test session early.

Daniel Ricciardo managed just seven laps around Jerez Circuit before pulling out of the afternoon session to focus on getting the RB10 ready for the next preseason test in Bahrain.

Red Bull says "a mechanical issue" was discovered that could not be fixed in time for the afternoon session.

Team principal Christian Horner says "it's been a very difficult test. We have had numerous Renault issues as well as chassis cooling issues, which have affected our progress."

But Horner was confident the F1 champions would solve the issues in time for Bahrain, which runs from Feb. 19-22.


Jerez test, Day Four timesheet:

1. Massa, Williams, 1:28.229, 86 laps

2. Alonso, Ferrari, 1:29.145, 115 laps

3. Juncadella, Force India, 1:29.457, 81 laps

4. Magnussen, McLaren, 1:30.806, 110 laps

5. Hamilton, Mercedes, 1:30.822, 41 laps

6. Bianchi, Marussia, 1:32.222, 25 laps

7. Sutil, Sauber, 1:36.571, 69 laps

8. Rosberg, Mercedes, 1:36.951, 91 laps

9. Kobayashi, Caterham, 1:43.193, 54 laps

10. Kvyat, Toro Rosso, 1:44.016, 9 laps

11. Ricciardo, Red Bull, 1:45.374, 7 laps.

Lap totals by team this week:

Mercedes - 309

Ferrari - 251

McLaren - 245

Williams - 175

Sauber - 163

Force India - 146

Caterham - 76

Toro Rosso - 54

Marussia - 30

Red Bull - 21

Lap totals by power unit supplier:

Mercedes - 875

Ferrari - 444

Renault - 151

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Williams looks set for Martini sponsorship


Williams looks set revive one of motorsport's classic liveries this year as part of a new sponsorship deal with Martini.

The Martini brand has sponsored various teams in different forms of motorsport over the years, including a deal with Brabham in Formula One during the 1970s (pictured). The team was not willing to comment on speculation surrounding its future sponsorship deals when contacted by ESPN, but confirmed a new livery would be revealed for Australia.

At the Jerez test the team ran an all-blue livery, but a Martini deal could see the the famous blue and red stripes of the drinks brand on the car in time for Melbourne. Earlier this week a merchandise website promoted an image of a white Williams Martini team shirt on its homepage, which was quickly removed once it started appearing on social media.

Williams recently announced a new sponsorship deal with US insurance company Genworth and it is rumoured to be close to a deal with Brazilian oil company Petrobras.

Read more at http://en.espnf1.com/williams/motorsport/story/145189.html#Q828m0jOie10Jrwo.99


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FIA legalises 'donuts' for F1 winners


Feb.17 (GMM) Post-race celebratory 'donuts' have been legalised by F1's governing body.

Sebastian Vettel was given an official reprimand by the FIA after crossing the line in India to become world champion for the fourth time last season.

"Are you serious?" Lewis Hamilton said when told of Vettel's penalty. "That's crazy!"

Red Bull team boss Christian Horner agreed that race stewards "need to be empowered to give a little more leniency in extraordinary circumstances".

That is exactly what has happened.

As confirmed in the latest draft of the 2014 sporting regulations, race winners will from now on be exempt from having to drive straight to parc ferme.

Now, they are allowed to "perform an act of celebration" after crossing the finish line, provided the act is "performed safely" and "does not delay the podium ceremony".


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New Lotus debuts as second test starts in Bahrain 19 Feb 2014

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Lotus’s 2014 car, the Renault-powered E22, finally made its official debut on Wednesday morning as the second pre-season test of the year got underway, this time in the rather warmer climes of Bahrain.

With Lotus having chosen to skip last month’s opening Spanish session to focus on factory development work, their new machine, which features a radical split-nose design, rolled out at Sakhir with Romain Grosjean at the wheel.

Grosjean will complete the opening two days of the four-day session, before handing over to new team mate Pastor Maldonado, who arrived from Williams over the off season to replace Kimi Raikkonen, now at Ferrari.

Lotus completed a successful shakedown of the E22 at Jerez last week, reportedly experiencing few if any of the power unit problems that plagued the other Renault teams at the first pre-season test.


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Williams has doubled its quota of Brazilians named Felipe, with overnight news emerging ahead of the final day of testing in Bahrain.

The legendary team confirmed the signing of Felipe Nasr as its official reserve and test driver behind race drivers Felipe Massa (his countryman) and Valtteri Bottas. Nasr will be in the FW36-Mercedes for Saturday’s fourth day of Bahrain testing. He’ll also partake in five free practice one sessions during the course of the 2014 season.



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Overall fastest times from second pre-season test, Bahrain 19-22 February:

1. Nico Rosberg (Ger) Mercedes 1:33.283 seconds

2. Lewis Hamilton (GB) Mercedes 1:34.263

3. Kevin Magnussen (Den) McLaren-Mercedes 1:34.910

4. Jenson Button (GB) McLaren-Mercedes 1:34.957

5. Nico Hulkenberg (Ger) Force India-Mercedes 1:36.445

6. Fernando Alonso (Spa) Ferrari 1:36.516

7. Kimi Raikkonen (Fin) Ferrari 1:36.718

8. Felipe Massa (Brz) Williams-Mercedes 1:37.066

9. Esteban Gutierrez (Mex) Sauber-Ferrari 1:37.180

10. Valtteri Bottas (Fin) Williams-Mercedes 1:37.328

11. Sergio Perez (Mex) Force India-Mercedes 1:37.367

12. Felipe Nasr (Brz) Williams-Mercedes 1:37.569

13. Pastor Maldonado (Ven) Lotus-Renault 1:38.707

14. Daniil Kvyat (Rus) Toro Rosso-Renault 1:38.974

15. Daniel Ricciardo (Aus) Red Bull-Renault 1:39.837

16. Kamui Kobayashi (Jpn) Caterham-Renault 139.855

17. Sebastian Vettel (Ger) Red Bull-Renault 1:40.340

18. Adrian Sutil (Ger) Sauber-Ferrari 1:40.443

19. Jean-Eric Vergne (Fra) Toro Rosso-Renault 1:40.609

20. Romain Grosjean (Fra) Lotus-Renault 1:41.670

21. Marcus Ericsson (Swe) Caterham-Renault 1:42.130

22. Max Chilton (GB) Marussia-Ferrari 1:42.511

23. Robin Frijns (Ned) Caterham-Renault 1:42.534


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Wolff gets rare chance for female driver in F1


LONDON (AP) — Susie Wolff will become the first woman in 22 years to compete in a Formula One event during the upcoming season as she chases a chance to race for Williams.

The 31-year-old Scot will take part in the first practice session ahead of both the British and German Grands Prix as part of her expanded development driver role with Williams.

Wolff will take to the track at Silverstone ahead of the British GP in July, having made her full F1 test debut at the circuit last July.

Not since Giovanna Amati, who failed to qualify in the 1992 Brazilian Grand Prix at Interlagos for Brabham, has a woman taken part in an F1 event.

The last female driver to race in F1 was Lella Lombardi in 1976.



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Formula 1: Teams' Association disbanded after six years

The Formula 1 teams' umbrella group has been disbanded.

The Formula 1 Teams' Association (Fota) was set up in 2008 to provide a single voice for the teams in dealings with F1 boss Bernie Ecclestone and governing body the FIA.

But its power was eroded when the influential Red Bull and Ferrari teams quit the organisation in 2011.

And now it has been closed down amid cost concerns and as a result of its declining relevance.

Fota secretary general Oliver Weingarten said: "I can confirm that Fota has been disbanded as a result of insufficient funds to continue and a lack of consensus among all the teams on a revised, non-contentious mandate."



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Well, that'sno surprise.

The bigger news is that Renault is asking for a deadline extension to get their engine ready. Given that Renault were the ones who pushed for this engine specification in the sport, and that these engines were supposed to be introduced last season, how on earth have Renault got themselves in such a mess?

We're going to see one very strange looking grid in Melbourne.

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Formula 1 qualifying format changes get teams' approval

Formula 1 teams have approved plans to tweak the qualifying format for 2014 in a bid to spice up the spectacle of Q3.

As AUTOSPORT revealed earlier this month, F1 team managers were called to a meeting with the FIA in Bahrain last week to discuss ideas to improve qualifying.

The meeting was put together because of concerns that too many drivers were electing to sit out the final qualifying session in a bid to save tyres for the race.

The proposed revisions featured drivers starting races on their Q2 tyres rather than Q3 rubber, extra tyres being provided for Q3 only, and Q1 being reduced from 20 to 18 minutes with Q3 lengthened to 12 minutes so that drivers can all complete two runs.

Those ideas were duly debated during Friday's meeting of F1's Strategy Group and AUTOSPORT has learned that they were approved.

The matter now needs to go to a vote of the FIA's World Motor Sport Council to be ratified before being put into the regulations in time for the Australian Grand Prix.

The support of the governing body will be a formality though, with FIA president Jean Todt having told AUTOSPORT recently that he fully backed the changed.

"It's constructive to have a little review of qualifying. Some people say, 'no we cannot go out in Q3 because we don't have enough tyres,'" he said.

"We are not talking about getting involved in a revolution. By doing a little refinement, a little finetuning, we can get at something [better]."

Teams also discussed potential revisions to the engine homologation regulations, in light of Renault's problems, but these were rejected.

A push by Bernie Ecclestone to expand the controversial double points rule for the final three races of the season, rather than just the season finale, was also voted down.


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Lewis Hamilton sets the pace on final day of pre-season testing

Lewis Hamilton set the pace on the final day of pre-season testing in Bahrain to underline his Mercedes team's status as favourites for the season-opener in Australia.

Hamilton was just 0.06 seconds off the fastest time of the winter, set by Williams's Felipe Massa on Saturday.

Valtteri Bottas was second fastest on Sunday, showing Williams, who had a poor 2013 season, could cause an upset.

Ferrari's Fernando Alonso was third while Red Bull's struggles continued.

World champion Sebastian Vettel suffered a spin caused by an apparent brake failure and ended the day eighth fastest, 4.190 seconds slower than Hamilton's best.

But after the car failed to complete even one lap on Saturday, it was a better day for Red Bull in terms of reliability - the world champion completed 77 laps, his highest mileage of the winter on a single day.

"I'm happy we did a lot of laps," Vettel said. "We would love some more laps but testing is over so we have to do more laps down under [when the season starts in Melbourne on 16 March]."

Alonso's fastest lap was the first time a Ferrari had dipped below one minute 35 seconds in Bahrain this winter.

But the Spaniard's lap of one minute 34.280 seconds was still a second off Hamilton's pace in the Mercedes.

Headline lap times are notoriously poor indicators of competitiveness, and that will be even more the case this year following the introduction of a fuel-usage limit into F1.

Nevertheless, Hamilton's pace underlined the already widespread impression his Mercedes team are in the best shape ahead of the new season.

Williams look to be genuine contenders too, following a major restructure of their engineering department over the past few months and their switch from Renault to Mercedes engines.

Like Red Bull, Lotus also continued to struggle, with Romain Grosjean completing only 32 laps before his day was ended by an engine fire.

They have done the least mileage of any team over the winter and, like Red Bull, look a long way from ready for the new season.

Asked about his chances in Australia, Vettel said: "It's very difficult, obviously.

"I am not calling us the favourites - for that we haven't done enough laps and the speed is not there compared to some other teams. So we'll have to wait and see when we get there.

"Things will calm down once we use the two weeks we have until then to fit new parts to the car and build it to the best knowledge that we currently have."


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F1 » Bahrain F1 test 2: Combined results 02 March 2014

combined lap times fo

1. Felipe Massa Brazil Williams-Mercedes 1min 33.258secs (3)

2. Lewis Hamilton Britain Mercedes-Mercedes 1min 33.278secs (4)

3. Nico Rosberg Germany Mercedes-Mercedes 1min 33.484secs (3)

4. Valtteri Bottas Finland Williams-Mercedes 1min 33.987secs (4)

5. Fernando Alonso Spain Ferrari-Ferrari 1min 34.280secs (4)

6. Sergio Perez Mexico Force India-Mercedes 1min 35.290secs (1)

7. Kimi Raikkonen Finland Ferrari-Ferrari 1min 35.426secs (3)

8. Nico Hulkenberg Germany Force India-Mercedes 1min 35.577secs (4)

9. Jean-Eric Vergne France STR-Renault 1min 35.701secs (4)

10. Daniel Ricciardo Australia Red Bull-Renault 1min 35.743secs (2)

11. Kevin Magnussen Denmark McLaren-Mercedes 1min 35.895secs (3)

12. Daniil Kvyat Russia STR-Renault 1min 36.113secs (3)

13. Adrian Sutil Germany Sauber-Ferrari 1min 36.467secs (4)

14. Max Chilton Britain Marussia-Ferrari 1min 36.835secs (4)

15. Jenson Button Britain McLaren-Mercedes 1min 36.901secs (2)

16. Jules Bianchi France Marussia-Ferrari 1min 37.087secs (3)

17. Esteban Gutierrez Mexico Sauber-Ferrari 1min 37.303secs (4)

18. Sebastian Vettel Germany Red Bull-Renault 1min 37.468secs (4)

19. Marcus Ericsson Sweden Caterham-Renault 1min 38.083secs (3)

20. Kamui Kobyashi Japan Caterham-Renault 1min 38.391secs (4)

21. Romain Grosjean France Lotus-Renault 1min 39.302secs (4)

22. Pastor Maldonado Venezuela Lotus-Renault 1min 40.599secs (1)

Combined lap counts (Jerez/Bahrain 1/Bahrain 2 12 days) Driver:

1. Nico Rosberg Germany Mercedes-Mercedes 554 laps

2. Fernando Alonso Spain Ferrari-Ferrari 529 laps

3. Kevin Magnussen Denmark McLaren-Mercedes 486 laps

4. Valtteri Bottas Finland Williams-Mercedes 449 laps

5. Lewis Hamilton Britain Mercedes-Mercedes 421 laps

6. Esteban Gutierrez Mexico Sauber-Ferrari 403 laps

7. Felipe Massa Brazil Williams-Mercedes 400 laps

8. Adrian Sutil German Sauber-Ferrari 372 laps

9. Kimi Raikkonen Finland Ferrari-Ferrari 344 laps

10. Nico Hulkenberg German Force India-Mercedes 343 laps

11. Sergio Perez Mexico Force India-Mercedes 337 laps

12. Jenson Button Britain McLaren-Mercedes 326 laps

13. Marcus Ericsson Sweden Caterham-Renault 286 laps

14. Kamui Kobayashi Japan Caterham-Renault 262 laps

15. Jean-Eric Vergne Russia STR-Renault 257 laps

16. Daniil Kvyat Russia STR-Renault 207 laps

17. Jules Bianchi France Marussia-Ferrari 184 laps

18. Sebastian Vettel Germany Red Bull-Renault 161 laps

19. Daniel Ricciardo Australia Red Bull-Renault 158 laps

20. Pastor Maldonado Venezuela Lotus-Renault 147 laps

21. Max Chilton Britain Marussia-Ferrari 131 laps

22. Romain Grosjean France Lotus-Renault 91 laps

23. Felipe Nasr Brazil Williams-Mercedes 87 laps *

24. Daniel Juncadella Spain Force India-Mercedes 81 laps *

25. Robin Frijns Netherlands Caterham-Renault 78 laps *

* Limited track time

Combined lap counts Team:

1. Mercedes 975 laps

2. Williams 936 laps

3. Ferrari 873 laps

4. McLaren 812 laps

5. Sauber 775 laps

6. Force India 761 laps

7. Caterham 626 laps

8. Toro Rosso 464 laps

9. Red Bull Racing 319 laps

10. Marussia 315 laps

11. Lotus 238 laps

Combined lap counts Engine:

1. Mercedes 3484 (871 laps per team average)

2. Ferrari 1963 (654.33 laps per team average)

3. Renault 1647 (411.75 laps per team average)

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Pirelli confirm in-season tyre test schedule 07 Mar 2014


In-season testing returns to Formula One racing this season, with two-day post-race tests in Bahrain, Spain, Great Britain and Abu Dhabi, and in an agreement finalised at the recent Bahrain test, each team must dedicate one day of testing exclusively to tyre development work with Pirelli.

The tyres that each team will use during its nominated tyre test days will be supplied by Pirelli and will not form part of their 135 allocated sets for the year. For the final test in Abu Dhabi Pirelli will supply all the teams with prototype tyres in preparation for the 2015 season.

2014 Pirelli tyre testing schedule:

Bahrain test (April 8-9)

Day 1 - Caterham

Day 2 - Mercedes and Williams

Barcelona test (May 13-14)

Day 1 - Sauber and Toro Rosso

Day 2 - McLaren and Force India

Silverstone test (July 8-9)

Day 1 - Ferrari and Lotus

Day 2 - Red Bull and Marussia


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Formula 1 - FIA to be lenient with 107 per cent Formula 1's race stewards are set to be lenient in allowing drivers who fail to set times within 107 per cent of pole position to start grands prix this year.

With teams still getting to grips with the new turbo engines, there have been fears that some cars could struggle to get within the limits laid down by the regulations.

Speaking ahead of the Australian Grand Prix, F1 race director Charlie Whiting said it was unlikely that the rule would be strictly enforced because of the current situation regarding performance and reliability concerns.

FIA approves qualifying changes for 2014

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Back to the days where car numbers were the ones from the 70's, and brutally high horsepower from the 80's. Smooth designs and a morphed steering wheel from the 90's, and excess of wings in the new millenium

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