F1 World Championship 2009 Thread


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The operative word here being CLAIM

The part you selectively ignored from your post, because it didn't fit your agenda was that Alonso has always given his mechanics Win bonuses.

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sorry forgot to add "rumor" tag.

anyways, is www.google.com & www.autosport.com slow right now?

for past 2-3 hours, it takes long time to open.


Williams sells stake in team

Frank Williams and Patrick Head have sold an equity stake in their Formula 1 team to an Austrian investment company.

Williams and Head have been the sole co-owners of Williams since it was formed in 1977 - and there has long been resistance to selling off a part of the company despite frequent speculation linking the team with numerous manufacturers.

However, Williams announced on Friday that a deal has been reached with an Austrian investment company led by investor Toto Wolff for him to have shares in the team. He will also sit on the company's board.

As well as his business activities, Wolff is a part-time racer – having competed in recent years in the FIA GT championship and the Austrian Rally Championship – in which he finished runner-up last year.

Frank Williams is expected to speak later today about the motivation behind the selling of shares.


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Rudolph Waels, responsible for the investment director of Aabar, which owns 45,1% of shares in Mercedes GP, and is the largest shareholder of Daimler, said in an interview to UAE channel Sport Channel 2 that Kimi Raikkonen is the best option for their team.

According to him, the shareholders of the team are extremely interested in the successful performance of Mercedes GP next season, and are willing to invest the necessary funds to the team so that it will fight for both titles. However, Aabar regarded Kimi Raikkonen as a necessary component of success, because he is the only one available on the market drivers, who win races and World Championships.

According Vaelsa, negotiations between the managers of Raikkonen and team management are already going 3-4 days, and the parties are close to concluding a contract, and they need to settle only minor details. Strongly believe in the happy outcome of the case, however, it's not happened yet - as a stumbling block could be any small detail, but at the moment everything is going smoothly.

A related point of view is shared by Nick Fry, who is willing to invite Raikkonen in command even today: "We are not in haste through all the options - almost all of the free pilots want to take this place. But if the decision I took, it would take Kimi Raikkonen. As for me, so let them start work with us tomorrow. Unfortunately, all is not so simple. "





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I doubt Button would have won the World Championship if it weren't for Ross Brawn's different interpretation of the rules with the double diffuser. It probably would have swung Red Bull's way. It was obvious during the second half of the season and due to lack of funding, Brawn was an average team and Barrichello was out performing his teammate, particularly in qualifying. Button was quite lucky in winning 6 races in a row which was quite a significant lead in the Championship points wise. I'm not putting Button down in any way as all drivers, even the worse, are extremely talented. Button I think is biting off more than he can chew. It will be interesting to see Hamilton/Button and Massa/Alonso relationships work out as both teams are well known to focus more or less on one driver. This was an exception with both Raikkonen and Massa, I think the two got on quite well and there wasn't a major focus on one driver until the last few races. Hamilton has always been the favored driver an McLaren as he has always received the new parts for the car and his teammates got that new part, used and torn for the next race. No wonder why Kovalinen was always behind.

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Kovalinen was behind because he isn't as good. The new parts went on the car at the same time for both drivers in 2008, and Hamilton still blew him away.

As for Ross Brawn, he specifically warned the other teams about the double diffuser loophole, they ignored him and vetoed a change to the aero rules, therefore he has nothing to be sorry for. To be frank, whenever the complainers, particularly Ferrari bend the rules, their fans just say that they are "being clever" and to be honest the other teams didn't like it because they where beaten to the punch. Formula 1 is all about thinking differently, and being innovative and I personally Applaud Brawn, Toyota, and Williams for thinking of it first.

And I wouldn't call Brawn an average team at all, their chassis design was built around a Honda engine, they had to compromise the aerodynamic setup of their car to accommodate the Mercedes engine, and as the other teams started to catch up on Aerodynamic development that started to become obvious. Also, all 3 of the latest world championships have been won by drivers with 6 wins or less, and I wouldn't call Button a weaker WDC at all, fact is your best point of comparison is the guy in the other car, and if you look at the fact that Barrichello came 19 points behind Button in the same car, the difference made by the driver is obvious.

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well, you forgot, Honda/Brawn are made around Button , so obviously he won :p

in brazil gp, did you see how RB's car changed drastically after 1st pit stop, he was given wrong tyres.

on radio RB was sadly asking "what happened to the car?"

anyways thats just team politics, they do all the ****ty things & then claim it was a honest mistake.

dont forget where Brawn comes from :p

about the change in chassis, yup, Brawn said in a interview that they had to cut 6inches off to fit the Merc. engine.

thats why they got outperformed by other teams after mid season.

another reson - Brawn were also developing their 2010 challenger.

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They can't fit a car with the wrong tyres, the tyre supply is strictly controlled by Bridgestone, and all drivers have the same sets.

You got the two different compounds i.e. Soft and super soft, medium and soft etc. Usually, depending on the track, track temp etc, these tires can differentiate by around 1 second give or take. Soft tires usually are quicker but also grain quicker than a harder compound. Brawn put the wrong set of tires on Barrichello's car. I can't really remember but it could've been a flat, wrong compound or not enough heat it the tires.

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Mercedes' 2010 lineup to 'surprise' - Haug

With Mercedes taking control of the successful Brawn GP outfit, and with Nico Rosberg highly expected to take over one cockpit, there remains one very attractive race seat available at this year's championship-winning team.

Norbert Haug has passed up an opportunity to clearly rule out some scenarios, including rumours which say that Michael Schumacher is set to make a sensational return to full-time Formula One racing.

Amid speculation that the almost 41-year-old will join Rosberg in an all-German 2010 lineup for Mercedes GP, the marque's competition director remarked: "You might be surprised.

"I'm pretty sure you and your readers will like our choice," Haug told Germany's Bild am Sonntag newspaper.

When asked specifically about the Schumacher rumours, he added: "There is always speculation in this sport, especially when cockpits have not yet been filled.

"And there are dreams, and that's a good thing. Fulfilling these dreams is another thing."

When told by the Sunday newspaper that German fans are expecting a German superteam, Haug added: "You seem to know more than I do. And with all due respect, I don't think so."

Haug was also asked about rumours linking Adrian Sutil with a Mercedes seat, and he

answered: "We have agreed confidentiality with all the drivers with whom we are speaking.


Also on Sunday, F1 chief executive Bernie Ecclestone played down the prospect of a return for Schumacher, the most successful driver in the history of the sport.

"It's most unlikely," he said on BBC radio Five Live's Sportsweek. "I don't see any reason why he should (return) and I have not heard anything at all.

"I would be very doubtful," the 79-year-old added.

Schumacher's official spokeswoman Sabine Kehm said: "There are no negotiations going on."

There has also been speculation that Kimi Raikkonen - currently set to take a sabbatical in 2010 and looking at World Rally Championship opportunities - now appears on Mercedes' list.

However the Finn indicated recently: "No, I have not held talks with Brawn. I feel they will run two German drivers next year now that Mercedes are involved."


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How obvious has he made it? :p

If you're following Tiff Needell on Twitter, he's pretty confident it's happening as well; he even tweeted the rumour last week before it even hit the news:

Schuey to return in Brawn Mercedes? Oh please please please

Original tweet.

Norbert Haug did promise a 'surprise' in the driver line-up. So what else could surprise you? Heidfeld no, Kovlain no, Kimi nothing new, ...

Original tweet.

The Schuey to Brawn rumour I tweeted to you a while ago is growing and growing ...

Original tweet.

Ecclestone 'very doubtful' about Schumacher's return - it must be odds on to happen then!

Original tweet.

2010 is looking like it's to be a great season! I'll be really impressed if it can top this season, which goes down as possibly one of the best in F1 history.

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You got the two different compounds i.e. Soft and super soft, medium and soft etc. Usually, depending on the track, track temp etc, these tires can differentiate by around 1 second give or take. Soft tires usually are quicker but also grain quicker than a harder compound. Brawn put the wrong set of tires on Barrichello's car. I can't really remember but it could've been a flat, wrong compound or not enough heat it the tires.

I am well aware of the tyre rules, it just doesn't make a whole lot of difference as all drivers have to use them at some point. For me, Webber always had the race won anyway, he was just plain faster than Barrichello

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Kimi Raikkonen to Citroen and the WRC?!

According to sources close to Automoto365.com, former Ferrari champion Kimi Raikkonen has signed a preliminary deal to race for Citroen in the World Rally Championship (WRC) in the upcoming 2010 Championship season.

Left without a top team capable of giving him a winning car after agreeing to step back from Ferrari and losing the available McLaren drive alongside Lewis Hamilton to 2009 champion, Jenson Button, Kimi’s choices in Formula One are very limited and while he still has unfinished business in the pinnacle of Motorsports, it seems no one on the 2010 grid can match the Finn’s requirements.

Mercedes is more than likely the only other team that could give Kimi what he needs equipment wise, are not prepared to meet the Finnish driver’s financial demands with the top brass wanting a much cheaper driver to race alongside Nico Rosberg. Therefore, he now finds himself left out in the cold and despite a nice payout from Ferrari, racing is in his blood and that’s what he wants to keep doing.

In steps Citroen, renamed as Creative Technologies, ‘the new ad baseline", to reinvent Citroen. Kimi is the sort of driver that should appeal to Red Bull, one of Citroen’s sponsors, immensely talented and a dare devil on and off track and his love of Rally has never been in doubt, in fact he has already made his debut in the Finnish rally earlier this year. For Citroen, the chance to have Raikkonen on their books would be a win win situation. While drivers tend to switch disciplines afrom time to time, never before has an F1 champion moved to the World Rally Championship for an entire season and as he already has a strong fan base his image would be perfect to reinforce the team and championship. It would also be the first time in a while that Citroen would have a Nordic driver in their ranks, giving them France, Spain and Nordic countries in their portfolio.

While the exact nature of the new deal is not quite known at this point in time, there are two possibilities open to the Finn in the Citroen world, either with the Junior Team as there is an immediate seat available or with Petter Solberg’s team, making for a super pairing of 2 world champions, 1 F1 1 WRC. Our very reliable sources confirmed that Solberg has contacted Kimi recently while the Finn’s co driver in WRC has already stated that they will keep working together in 2010...


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Sauber F1 2010 bid on verge of collapse as Qadbak unravels?

Reports begin to circulate that the mysterious Qadbak consortium that rescued Sauber in the wake of BMW's F1 withdrawal is not what it seems - and that it is in fact being spearheaded by convicted fraudster Russell King...

The mysterious Qadbak Investments consortium that purchased the Sauber operation off BMW after the German manufacturer announced that it was to withdraw from F1 competition at the end of 2009 may not be the saviour the team had so desperately hoped it would be, reports suggest.

Rumours are starting to do the rounds in the grand prix paddock that Qadbak is perhaps not all that it seems. Understood to be a finance firm – and an organisation that has also recently acquired Notts County football club – it had been believed that behind Qadbak were a couple of wealthy, reclusive Middle Eastern families, and it was on that premise that BMW agreed to the sale.

Now, however, doubts are beginning to surface, with Swiss newspaper Sonntagszeitung alleging that Qadbak is in fact merely a front for Dubai-based, convicted British fraudster Russell King, who it is claimed is bidding to fund the team off the back of the commercial rights revenue that BMW-Sauber will have benefitted from for finishing sixth in the constructors' title chase in the 2009 F1 World Championship – provided they are granted an entry for 2010, and subject to Formula One Management (FOM) chief executive Bernie Ecclestone's agreement.

The FIA is due to publish the definitive list of 2010 entrants at the end of November, and as yet Qadbak-Sauber does not figure amongst them – with the place that would have automatically been theirs prior to BMW's departure having in the meantime been allotted to Lotus. Whilst it has been suggested that the delay in what would appear to be a relatively straightforward decision – given Sauber's solid pedigree in F1 since its debut back in 1993 – is the result of protracted legal wrangling over Toyota's withdrawal, others have mused that the governing body is getting cold feet over King's involvement as an advisor.

It is said that the FIA are suspicious both of King's motives and financial backing, and are unwilling to allocate the grid slot to Sauber until they are convinced the money is there to guarantee the future of the Hinwil-based outfit and its hundreds of employees. BMW is similarly understood to be becoming increasingly alarmed at the lack of solid funding behind the deal, which Qadbak states is guaranteed by Bahrain Capital International.

According to The Times, King was sentenced to two years in prison in 1991 after being found guilty of attempting to obtain money by deception, for an insurance scam in which he faked the theft of a ?600,000 Aston Martin that he owned in an effort to claim on the insurance.

He is also reported to have swindled Equipment Rental Finance out of ?330,000 when he borrowed the money in order to purchase a Rolls Royce before cancelling the order and pocketing the cash – just one in a string of unpaid loans he is alleged to have taken out on luxury cars. Almost ?2 million of his assets are believed to have been frozen by courts in Jersey over unpaid debts, following an investigation into his failing company Belgravia in 2008.

King has been involved in F1 before back in 2002 as part of Essentially Sport – a company that managed the career of recently-crowned world champion Jenson Button – and together with business partner John Byfield, he launched Grand Prix Investments, which two years later put in an offer to buy Jordan Grand Prix with the stated financial support of Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum of Dubai...but that support never materialised and the bid fell through.

Sources close to Crash.net have also cast doubt over the authenticity of the Qadbak buy-out, with one claiming that other powerful and wealthy Middle Eastern investors had been keen to enter into negotiations but that BMW had been 'so desperate to sell they rushed in' with King. Another added that 'all the Sauber employees are very unhappy with the new management ̵the only person who is happy is Mario Theissen, who has been offered the job of team principal and shares/b>'.


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All sounds a bit fishy to me, I thought the deal seemed a bit odd when it was first done in fact. Personally I am not bothered who the last spot goes to, as long as they fill it.

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BMW sells F1 team back to Peter Sauber

BMW has agreed to sell its Formula 1 team back to Peter Sauber, on condition that the team receives an entry for 2010, after announcing it's original sale to Qadbak Investment Ltd. will not be completed.

The German car maker announced earlier this year it was pulling out of Formula 1, but said it had agreed a deal with Swiss company Qadbak, who was to run the team in the future.

BMW said on Friday however that the Qadbak deal would not be completed.

Instead, the car maker has sold the team back to Peter Sauber, who founded his F1 team in 1993 and ran it until BMW bought it four years ago.

"We are very happy with this solution," said Dr Klaus Draeger, Member of the Board of Management of BMW AG. "This fulfils the most important requirement for a successful future for the team.

"Our relationship with Peter Sauber has always been excellent and marked by absolute respect. We would like to express our thanks to Peter Sauber and the whole team for the excellent cooperation during the recent four years."

Sauber added: "I am very relieved that we have found this solution. It means we can keep the Hinwil location and the majority of workplaces. I am convinced that the new team has a very good future in Formula One, whose current transformation with new framework conditions will benefit the private teams.

"Our staff here are highly competent and motivated, and I look forward to taking on this new challenge together with them. I would like to thank BMW for four shared years that have in the main been very successful."

A further agreement with Sauber proposes personnel cuts from the current level of 388 to around 250 employees.

The future of the team in Formula 1 remains unclear, however, as the FIA is yet to confirm its grid slot for 2010.


VW considering F1 engine supply

Volkswagen is seriously evaluating a move into Formula 1 as an engine supplier from 2012, when new power unit regulations due to be introduced could make the sport attractive enough for the German car maker to get involved.

Although F1 has been rocked by the withdrawal of three manufacturers in the last 12 months - with Honda, BMW and Toyota all quitting the sport - the Volkswagen Group believes that the sport is actually becoming more attractive with the way rules are heading.

The German car manufacturer's representative Hans-Joachim Stuck says his company would not be interested in becoming a partner with a team - as was rumoured several years ago when it was linked with a deal to buy into Red Bull Racing - but would be up for supplying engines.

However, Stuck has made it clear that the possibility to supply power units to a number of outfits, especially if there was a 'world engine', would be enough to attract Volkswagen into F1.

"If you're the world's largest manufacturer is natural that we're thinking about [Formula 1], but not before 2012," Stuck told AUTOSPORT about Volkswagen's F1 ambitions.

"We're looking for innovative things, and Formula 1 is the pinnacle of motorsport. Two years ago there was some talk that Volkswagen is going to buy the Red Bull F1 team, which we didn't need to buy. Why should we stick with one team if we can give our engines to more teams?

"If you buy Red Bull and Adrian Newey wants to go flying or fishing, the team is not successful any more. Look at BMW. They bought this multi-million dollar wind tunnel and a supercomputer and they now close the doors. Building an engine and providing it to a team is the best way."

Stuck claims Formula 1's return to expanded grids, and low-cost regulations, has put the sport firmly on Volkswagen's radar.

"Now it's amazing; Formula 1 goes the right way," said Stuck. "Many manufacturers have pulled out, which I think is a great deal, because we have manufacturers that we don't know for how long they will do it.

"They should become engine manufacturers and then lease the engine, sell the engine or give it to somebody. Then you lose all the hassle with teams, wind tunnels, engineers, you know.

"It's like Formula 1 in my days. We had March, we had Lotus, and we had Ford engines. Then Renault came in as engine manufacturer, with a formidable engine. This was perfect.

"I followed Formula 1 for the last seven years with BMW and I always asked myself on the grid, with only 20 cars, what if we could have 30 cars? Now we're getting back to this.

"We have three more teams next year, 26 cars, and by having a global engine, which is good in cost and reliable, we can have 30 cars on the grid."

The Volkswagen Group has recently enjoyed great success in racing with its different brands.

Besides its multiple Le Mans wins with Audi, its WTCC titles with Seat in the past two years and its Dakar victory this year, Volkswagen also powered drivers with VW engines to the British and German F3 titles this, rounding out the season with victory in last weekend's Macau Grand Prix.

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Raikkonen's WRC switch deal done

Kimi Raikkonen's switch to the World Rally Championship is expected to be confirmed in the next few hours, AUTOSPORT has learned.

The Finn has been considering his options in the wake of a failure to complete a deal with McLaren, which was his only realistic chance to remain in F1 next year after he agreed to end his Ferrari contract early.

He had been widely expected to make the move to the WRC, and sources have revealed that he has now completed a deal to compete with the Red Bull-backed Citroen junior team alongside Sebastien Ogier.

It is understood that Raikkonen will contest the entire WRC season apart from the New Zealand Rally, which his team is not competing in. He will also participate in the Arctic Rally.

Raikkonen has made no secret of the fact that he is looking at a return to F1 in 2011 - with speculation already suggesting he is high on Red Bull Racing's list to partner Sebastian Vettel.

The fact that Red Bull is backing Raikkonen's rally efforts will do little to quell those rumours, although sources at the energy drinks company are adamant that the current ties mean nothing for his future F1 ambitions.

"This has no prejudice at all for Kimi's further F1 career if he intends one," a source close to Red Bull told AUTOSPORT. "It does not mean at all that he will replace a current Red Bull F1 driver in our team from 2011."


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Raikkonen joins WRC with Citroen

Citroen has announced that Kimi Raikkonen will join its World Rally Championship line-up in a Red Bull-backed Citroen Junior Team car, as predicted by AUTOSPORT.

The 2007 Formula 1 world champion will be joined in the Red Bull Citroen squad by former Junior WRC champion Sebastien Ogier, who completed an impressive WRC rookie season with the squad last year.

Raikkonen made his top flight rallying debut in an S2000 Abarth at his home round of the WRC in Finland earlier this year, earning the respect of the series regulars for the speed with which he adapted to driving on the stages. He has hinted for many years that he was keen to pursue a career in rallying after F1, and when he announced last month that he would take a sabbatical following the breakdown of his talks with McLaren, the WRC was seen as his most likely destination.

"I always wanted to compete in rally, especially in the World Rally Championship at some point in my career," said Raikkonen.

"Thanks to Red Bull, I have the opportunity to drive the best car of the series with the Citroen C4. This is a new but very exciting challenge."

Speculation has suggested that Raikkonen could return to F1 with Red Bull after his first WRC season. He confirmed that his Citroen deal only covered 2010 at present.

"For the moment we have a one-year contract and we will see how it goes for the future," Raikkonen said. "I am really looking forward to testing the car and taking the start of the first rally."

Citroen team boss Olivier Quesnel said he was delighted by Red Bull's increased involvement, and that the squad had such a strong Junior line-up in Raikkonen and Ogier alongside factory drivers Sebastien Loeb and Dani Sordo.

"Red Bull's commitment and energy are a perfect fit for Citroen's ongoing thirst for victory," Quesnel said. "We will continue to count on S?bastien and Dani to defend our world titles in 2010, and we will also be prolonging our association with Sebastien Ogier who showed outstanding potential this year.

"Last but not least, it is with immense joy that we welcome Kimi Raikkonen to our ranks. We are very proud that he has chosen Citroen.

"In addition to the confirmation of these four crews, we will hopefully be able to announce other programmes over the coming weeks."

Raikkonen and Ogier will contest 12 of next year's 13 WRC rounds, but will skip the New Zealand event.


hmm, who's gonna drive that silver arrow?

nick may stay at sauber

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Silverstone secures British GP from 2010

The British Grand Prix will stay at the Silverstone circuit next year after the Northamptonshire track reached a deal with Bernie Ecclestone after weeks of negotiations.

Silverstone looked set to lose the race last year when Ecclestone signed a 17-year deal with Donington Park to host the grand prix from next season.

However, Donington failed to raise the funds to carry out a redevelopment project and so Ecclestone began talks with Silverstone.

The British Racing Drivers' Club, owners of the tack, confirmed on Monday morning they had secured a 17-year agreement to host the British Grand Prix from 2010.

The circuit will also host a MotoGP race next year.

More @ autosport

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