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Sunday, March 27, 2011

A walk in the park for Seb

Sebastian Vettel led from the start and eased to victory in Sunday's season-opening Australian Grand Prix, while Lewis Hamilton proved McLaren had indeed found something to come in second and Renault's Vitaly Petrov turned in a strong drive for third.

German Formula One driver Sebastian Vettel of Red Bull Racing celebrates with his throphy on the podium after winning the Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix at the Albert Park circuit in Melbourne, Australia, 27 March 2011. Photo: Jens Buettner dpa


Fernando Alonso finished fourth, but Ferrari was not much of a factor. Vettel's Red Bull teammate Mark Webber was not able to slot into second at the start, finishing fifth in his home race, and Jenson Button had one to forget. Unable to get by Felipe Massa in the early stages of the race, a particularly spirited effort found him on the run off road and on the receiving end of a drive through penalty.

Sauber Formula One driver Sergio Perez of Mexico drives during the Australian F1 Grand Prix at the Albert Park circuit in Melbourne March 27, 2011. Sauber drivers Sergio Perez and Kamui Kobayashi have been excluded from the Australian Grand Prix results for technical infringements, race organisers said on Sunday. REUTERS/Scott Wensley (AUSTRALIA - Tags: SPORT MOTOR RACING)


Perhaps the story of the day would have been Sauber, originally classified seventh and eighth with Sergio Perez leading the way. Unfortunately, both cars were later disqualified. According to AUTOSPORT: The rear wings did not comply with Articles 3.10.1 and 3.10.2 of the F1 Technical Regulations that demands wing parts do not have 'a local concave radius of curvature smaller than 100mm.' The team has appealed and is investigating.

The change in the results moves Sebastien Buemi up to eight and sees both Force Indias rounding out the top ten.

Williams Formula One driver Pastor Maldonado of Venezuela drives out of the track during the Australian F1 Grand Prix at the Albert Park circuit in Melbourne March 27, 2011. REUTERS/Mick Tsikas (AUSTRALIA - Tags: SPORT MOTOR RACING)


It was a bad day for Mercedes and Williams, both suffering double retirements. Among last year's new teams, Lotus still hasn't found that midfield pace, Jarno Trulli finishing 13th, two laps down, and Timo Glock, Virgin's highest runner, was not classified.

But the big story was Vettel, who blazed out ahead of the field and was never under threat. Given the debate over the team's decision not to use KERS this weekend, the German's challengers have their work cut out for them. It all continues in Malaysia in two week's time.

Formula One drivers stand in the starting grid during a minute of silence for victims of Japan before the start of the Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix at the Albert Park circuit in Melbourne, Australia, 27 March 2011. Photo: Jens Buettner dpa


Result

  1. Sebastian Vettel (Germany) RedBull 1hr 29:30.259 seconds

  2. Lewis Hamilton (Britain) McLaren +00:22.297

  3. Vitaly Petrov (Russia) Renault 00:30.560

  4. Fernando Alonso (Spain) Ferrari 00:31.772

  5. Mark Webber (Australia) RedBull 00:38.171

  6. Jenson Button (Britain) McLaren 00:54.304

  7. Felipe Massa (Brazil) Ferrari 01:25.186

  8. Sebastien Buemi (Switzerland) Toro Rosso 1 lap

  9. Adrian Sutil (Germany) Force India 1 lap

  10. Paul Di Resta (Britain) Force India 1 lap

  11. Jaime Alguersuari (Spain) Toro Rosso 1 lap

  12. Nick Heidfeld (Germany) Renault 1 lap

  13. Jarno Trulli (Italy) Lotus 2 laps

  14. Jerome d'Ambrosio (Belgium) Virgin 4 laps


  • Timo Glock (Germany) Virgin 9 laps not classified

  • Rubens Barrichello (Brazil) Williams 10 laps

  • Nico Rosberg (Germany) Mercedes 36 laps

  • Michael Schumacher (Germany) Mercedes 39 laps

  • Heikki Kovalainen (Finland) Lotus 39 laps

  • Pastor Maldonado (Venezuela) Williams 49 laps

  • Sergio Perez (Mexico) Sauber DISQUALIFIED

  • Kamui Kobayashi (Japan) Sauber DISQUALIFIED


Motorsports: FIA Formula One World Championship 2011, Grand Prix of Australia, children racer, Kinder, kids, fans


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FIA post-race press conference - Australia

Australian Grand Prix - selected team & driver quotes

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Vettel's pole lap in Australia

How it's done:

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Saturday, March 26, 2011

Australia: Qualifying

Sebastian Vettel picked up where he left off, taking pole by a wide margin over Lewis Hamilton, while Hamilton proved McLaren had found speed in the car by edging Vettel's Red Bull teammate for second on the grid.

Red Bull Formula One driver Sebastian Vettel of Germany celebrates after claiming the pole position of the Australian F1 Grand Prix at the Albert Park circuit in Melbourne March 26, 2011. REUTERS/Daniel Munoz (AUSTRALIA - Tags: SPORT MOTOR RACING)


.

Mark Webber stars third.

Jenson Button beat out Fernando Alonso for fourth, while Vitaly Petrov starts a surprising sixth in the Renault.

Other notables included Nico Rosberg once again outqualifying Michael Schumacher; Sergio Perez, Paul di Resta and Pastor Maldonado looking solid in their debut efforts; and Lotus, Virgin and HRT in their usual places. But there is a new twist to that last one: both HRTs fell outside the 107 percent rule, and will not race Sunday.

A photographer with a sticker 'Save Japan' on his lens takes photos in front of the garage from Red Bull Racing during third practice session at Albert Park street circuit in Melbourne, Australia, 26 March 2011. The 2011 Formula 1 Grand Prix of Australia kicks off the 2011 season on 27 March 2011. Photo: Jens Buettner



.

Official

  1. Sebastian Vettel (Germany) Red Bull 1min 23.529 seconds
  2. Lewis Hamilton (Britain) McLaren 1:24.307
  3. Mark Webber (Australia) Red Bull 1:24.395
  4. Jenson Button (Britain) McLaren 1:24.779
  5. Fernando Alonso (Spain) Ferrari 1:24.974
  6. Vitaly Petrov (Russia) Renault 1:25.247
  7. Nico Rosberg (Germany) Mercedes 1:25.421
  8. Felipe Massa (Brazil) Ferrari 1:25.599
  9. Kamui Kobayashi (Japan) Sauber 1:25.626
  10. Sebastien Buemi (Switzerland) Toro Rosso 1:27.066
  11. Michael Schumacher (Germany) Mercedes 1:25.971
  12. Jaime Alguersuari (Spain) Toro Rosso 1:26.103
  13. Sergio Perez (Mexico) Sauber 1:26.108
  14. Paul Di Resta (Britain) Force India 1:26.739
  15. Pastor Maldonado (Venezuela) Williams 1:26.768
  16. Adrian Sutil (Germany) Force India 1:31.407
  17. Rubens Barrichello (Brazil) Williams no time
  18. Nick Heidfeld (Germany) Renault 1:27.239
  19. Heikki Kovalainen (Finland) Lotus 1:29.254
  20. Jarno Trulli (Italy) Lotus 1:29.342
  21. Timo Glock (Germany) Virgin 1:29.858
  22. Jerome d'Ambrosio (Belgium) Virgin 1:30.822
  • nq. Vitantonio Liuzzi (Italy) HRT 1:32.978
  • nq. Narain Karthikeyan (India) HRT 1:34.293

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Friday, March 25, 2011

Australia: Practice


First Session

  1. Mark Webber (Australia) RedBull 1 min 26.831 secs
  2. Sebastian Vettel (Germany) RedBull 1:27.158
  3. Fernando Alonso (Spain) Ferrari 1:27.749
  4. Nico Rosberg (Germany) Mercedes 1:28.152
  5. Rubens Barrichello (Brazil) Williams 1:28.430
  6. Jenson Button (Britain) McLaren 1:28.440
  7. Lewis Hamilton (Britain) McLaren 1:28.483
  8. Michael Schumacher (Germany) Mercedes 1:28.690
  9. Kamui Kobayashi (Japan) Sauber 1:28.725
  10. Vitaly Petrov (Russia) Renault 1:28.765
  11. Felipe Massa (Brazil) Ferrari 1:28.842
  12. Nick Heidfeld (Germany) Renault 1:28.928
  13. Adrian Sutil (Germany) Force India 1:29.314
  14. Sebastien Buemi (Switzerland) Toro Rosso 1:29.328
  15. Pastor Maldonado (Venezuela) Williams 1:29.403
  16. Daniel Ricciardo (Australia) Toro Rosso 1:29.468
  17. Sergio Perez (Mexico) Sauber 1:29.643
  18. Nico Huelkenberg (Germany) Force India 1:31.002
  19. Heikki Kovalainen (Finland) Lotus 1:32.428
  20. Jerome d'Ambrosio (Belgium) Virgin 1:35.282
  21. Timo Glock (Germany) Virgin 1:35.289
  • Karun Chandhok (India) Lotus
  • Vitantonio Liuzzi (Italy) HRT
  • Narain Karthikeyan (India) HRT


25.03.2011 Melbourne, Australia - Sergio Perez (MEX), Sauber F1 Team - Formula1 World Championship Round 01 at Melbourne Albert Park +++ Copyright: Stange / RACE-PRESS.com



Second session

  1. Jenson Button (Britain) McLaren 1 min :25.854 secs
  2. Lewis Hamilton (Britain) McLaren 1:25.986
  3. Fernando Alonso (Spain) Ferrari 1:26.001
  4. Sebastian Vettel (Germany) RedBull 1:26.014
  5. Mark Webber (Australia) RedBull 1:26.283
  6. Michael Schumacher (Germany) Mercedes 1:26.590
  7. Felipe Massa (Brazil) Ferrari 1:26.789
  8. Sergio Perez (Mexico) Sauber 1:27.101
  9. Rubens Barrichello (Brazil) Williams 1:27.280
  10. Nico Rosberg (Germany) Mercedes 1:27.448
  11. Jaime Alguersuari (Spain) Toro Rosso 1:27.525
  12. Vitaly Petrov (Russia) Renault 1:27.528
  13. Nick Heidfeld (Germany) Renault 1:27.536
  14. Sebastien Buemi (Switzerland) Toro Rosso 1:27.697
  15. Kamui Kobayashi (Japan) Sauber 1:28.095
  16. Paul Di Resta (Britain) Force India 1:28.376
  17. Adrian Sutil (Germany) Force India 1:28.583
  18. Pastor Maldonado (Venezuela) Williams 1:29.386
  19. Heikki Kovalainen (Finland) Lotus 1:30.829
  20. Jarno Trulli (Italy) Lotus 1:30.912
  21. Jerome d'Ambrosio (Belgium) Virgin 1:32.106
  22. Timo Glock (Germany) Virgin 1:32.135
  • Vitantonio Liuzzi (Italy) HRT no time
  • Narain Karthikeyan (India) HRT no time



25.03.2011 Melbourne, Australia - formula one flag - Formula1 World Championship Round 01 at Melbourne Albert Park +++ Copyright: Stange / RACE-PRESS.com



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FIA Thursday press conference - Australia

Friday practice - selected team and driver quotes

FIA Friday press conference - Australia

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Saturday, March 19, 2011

The quotable F1: Bernie Ecclestone

"I meet people worldwide in all different walks of life - sponsors, promoters and journalists and I think there are two things that are really important for F1; one is Ferrari and second is the noise. I brought some Russian gentlemen to Singapore and met them afterwards in Russia - it was the first race they'd ever been to and I said what was it that impressed you. I didn't even think about the noise but they said the most important thing was the noise - it's incredible, it really gets to you. Even more so the women - the ladies love the noise."

- Bernie Ecclestone to the Australian Associated Press


Formula 1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone walks through the paddock at Korea International Circuit in Yeongam, South Korea, 22 October 2010. The maiden Formula 1 Korean Grand Prix is held on 24 October 2010. Photo:David Ebener
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One week to go...

Get your Australia preview quotes here!

McLaren Formula One driver Jenson Button of Britain takes the chequered flag to win the Australian F1 Grand Prix in Melbourne in this March 28, 2010 file photo. The 2010 Australian Grand Prix posted a A$49.2 million ($46 million) loss, local media reported on Thursday, placing further pressure on the state government to justify the burden on taxpayers. The Australian Grand Prix Corporation (AGRC) said the global financial crisis had continued to have a "significant impact" on the loss-making race, local media quoted the organisers' annual report, which was tabled in Victoria state's parliament. REUTERS/Mick Tsikas/Files (AUSTRALIA - Tags: SPORT MOTOR RACING POLITICS BUSINESS)
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A field guide to Pirelli's tires

Pirelli has officially announced the color coding used to distinguish its six F1 tires for the 2011 season.



Wet – orange
Intermediate – light blue
Supersoft – red
Soft – yellow
Medium – white
Hard – silver

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Saturday, March 12, 2011

Winter testing: Barcelona day 5

Unofficial
  1. Nico Rosberg, Mercedes GP, 1:43.814, 35 laps
  2. Pastor Maldonado, Williams, 1:44.333, 23
  3. Lewis Hamilton, McLaren, 1:44.560, 33
  4. Michael Schumacher, Mercedes GP, no time, 5
  5. Fernando Alonso, Ferrari, no time, 5
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Friday, March 11, 2011

Winter testing: Barcelona day 4

Unofficial

  1. Michael Schumacher, Mercedes GP, 1:21.249
  2. Fernando Alonso, Ferrari, 1:21.614
  3. Nico Rosberg, Mercedes GP, 1:21.788
  4. Nick Heidfeld, Renault, 1:22.073
  5. Rubens Barrichello, Williams, 1:22.233
  6. Kamui Kobayashi, Sauber, 1:22.315
  7. Jaime Alguersuari, Toro Rosso, 1:22.675
  8. Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull, 1:22.933
  9. Heikki Kovalainen, Lotus, 1:23.437
  10. Paul di Resta, Force India, 1:22.653
  11. Adrian Sutil, Force India, 1:23.921
  12. Pastor Maldonado, Williams, 1:24.108
  13. Jenson Button, McLaren, 1:25.837
  14. Jerome D’Ambrosio, Virgin, 1:27.375
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Thursday, March 10, 2011

Winter testing: Barcelona Day 3

Unofficial
  1. Sergio Perez, Sauber, 1:21.761
  2. Felipe Massa, Ferrari, 1:22.092
  3. Mark Webber, Red Bull, 1:22.466
  4. Rubens Barrichello, Williams, 1:22.637
  5. Michael Schumacher, Mercedes GP, 1:22.892
  6. Nick Heidfeld, Renault, 1:23.541
  7. Heikki Kovalainen, Lotus, 1:23.990
  8. Vitaly Petrov, Renault, 1:24.233
  9. Adrian Sutil, Force India, 1:24.334
  10. Jaime Alguersuari, Toro Rosso, 1:24.779
  11. Jerome D’Ambrosio, Virgin, 1:27.336
  12. Jarno Trulli, Lotus, 1:34.485
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Another take on Senna...

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Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Winter testing: Barcelona Day 2

Unofficial
  1. Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull, 1:21.865
  2. Sebastien Buemi, Toro Rosso, 1:22.396
  3. Vitaly Petrov, Renault, 1:22.670
  4. Lewis Hamilton, McLaren, 1:22.888
  5. Felipe Massa, Ferrari, 1:23.324
  6. Paul di Resta, Force India, 1:24.334
  7. Kamui Kobayashi, Sauber, 1:24.436
  8. Nico Rosberg, Mercedes GP, 1:25.807
  9. Jarno Trulli, Lotus, 1:26.090
  10. Pastor Maldonado, Williams, 1:26.989
  11. Jerome D’Ambrosio, Virgin, 1:28.982
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Tuesday, March 8, 2011

The quotable F1: Sam Michael

"Chicanes are the bane of F1. They destroy any chance of overtaking because the guy in front can just go into the apex, protect the corner and not hurt his exit. You can't do that with a hairpin. If he protects on a hairpin he loses on the exit but with a chicane he just backs the guy up, sorts himself out and off he goes again. They should just ban chicanes."


- Williams technical director Sam Michael to AUTOSPORT
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Winter testing: Barcelona Day 1

Unofficial

  1. Mark Webber, Red Bull, 1:22.544, 97 laps
  2. Jenson Button, McLaren, 1:22.910, 74
  3. Vitaly Petrov, Renault, 1:22.937, 27
  4. Sergio Perez, Sauber, 1:24.117, 90
  5. Nick Heidfeld, Renault, 1:24.735, 20
  6. Paul di Resta, Force India, 1:25.039, 38
  7. Davide Valsecchi, Lotus, 1:25.406, 50
  8. Sebastien Buemi, Toro Rosso, 1:26.004, 48
  9. Nico Hulkenberg, Force India, 1:26.030, 31
  10. Luiz Razia, Lotus, 1:26.723, 29
  11. Jerome D’Ambrosio, Virgin, 1:32.060, 57
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Sunday, March 6, 2011

Keep the gimmicks, give me racing

Last week, Bernie Ecclestone, lamenting the state of racing in F1, suggested artificial rain as a way to spice up the show. Happy to oblige its new client, Pirelli was quick to hop on board.

Granted, some of the best racing happens in the wet, when the differences between the cars close up. And last year’s brilliant title race certainly was influenced by it.

But this is just one more Mickey Mouse attempt to manipulate the show. The racing we see on the track should be pure, not some sort of video game push button madness.

To that end, here are a couple of changes I’d throw in right now:

  1. Keep the new movable wing, but make it available all the time. Not this brief window on the track determined by the stewards. No one is going to be able to follow this. Why allow technology and make its use so artificial?
  2. Get rid of this mandatory tire compound change. Change tires because they’re worn. Put on the ones that are optimal for your setup. Forcing teams to compromise their setups to accommodate tires they wouldn’t run if they weren’t required to compromises the show.
Formula 1 racing should be pure. We should be seeing teams and drivers pitted against each other based upon their skills. And the sport provides a tried and true way to keep things under control. Change the formula.

Need a good idea where to draw the line? Any time you are considering limiting something to one portion of the track, putting something in the hands of the track stewards or technology to determine, or adding an artificial element to the show, you’ve gone too far. Don't miss the top stories of the day, subscribe to the SpeedRead Web newspaper now! -- Email SpeedRead -- Learn more about author C.D. Six

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