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Archive for May, 2008

Lewis Hamilton has won the Monaco grand prix.

Hamilton finished just 3 seconds ahead of Robert Kubica with Felipe Massa 3rd
This was Hamilton’s second win of the season and the sixth of his career.
Mark Webber was fourth. Kimi Raikkonen had a race of accidents and incidents and finished ninth, failing to score a point. This left Hamilton on top of the title race again for the first time since the season opening race in Australia. He has 38 points now with Raikkonen on 35 second and Massa third on 34. Hamilton made a great start and found a way past Raikkonen going into the first corner.
The rain caused big problems at the start of the race which involved Hamilton himself smashing into the barriers on lap six at Tabac. His rear right tyre was left hanging as he returned to the pits.
David Coulthard had climbed from 15th to the top ten by now but the rain played havoc with the race for several minutes as Alonso, followed by Coulthard and Sebastian Bourdais crashed off into the barriers at Massenet. Then Raikkonen was given a ‘drive-through’ penalty because Ferrari had failed to fit his car’s tyres properly more than three minutes before the start of the race.
After he had performed his punishment, the running order at the top was Massa followed by Kubica and then Hamilton who had pitted and recovered.
As the track dried out, Hamilton had to decide what tyres to change to, and chose dry ones, and came out with a 30 second lead over 2nd placed Kubica
With 17 laps remaining, Nico Rosberg caused the second Safety Car intervention when he lost control in the swimming pool complex and wrecked his car in a massive accident.
When racing resumed, Hamilton raced clear but on lap 68 Raikkonen made a big mistake and lost control of his car as he came out of the tunnel and ran into the back of Sutil, who was running in an excellent 4th place
Both drivers had to pit for repairs, but Sutil was forced to retire while Raikkonen rejoined in 9th place.

So we now move on to Canada in 2 weeks time, with Hamilton once again leading the world championship by 3 points.

Monaco GP Result – 76 laps

1.  HAMILTON     McLaren       
2.  KUBICA       BMW           +3.0s
3.  MASSA        Ferrari       +4.8s
4.  WEBBER       Red Bull      +19.2s
5.  VETTEL       Toro Rosso    +24.6s
6.  BARRICHELLO  Honda         +28.4s
7.  NAKAJIMA     Williams      +30.1s
8.  KOVALAINEN   McLaren       +33.1s
9.  RAIKKONEN    Ferrari       +33.7s
10. ALONSO       Renault       +1 lap
11. BUTTON       Honda         +1 lap
12. GLOCK        Toyota        +1 lap
13. TRULLI       Toyota        +1 lap
14. HEIDFELD     BMW           +4 laps
R.  SUTIL        Force India   +9 laps
R . ROSBERG      Williams      +17 laps
R.  PIQUET       Renault       +29 laps
R.  FISICHELLA   Force India   +40 laps
R.  COULTHARD    Red Bull      +69 laps
R.  BOURDAIS     Toro Rosso    +69 laps

 

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Felipe Massa secured pole position for the Monaco Grand Prix when he outpaced his Ferrari teammate and defending champion Kimi Raikkonen in the final seconds.

Raikkonen ended up second ahead of Lewis Hamilton and his McLaren teammate, Heikki Kovalainen, who was fourth.

They will share the second row of the grid after failing to build on their speed earlier in the weekend.

It was Massa’s 12th career pole position and Ferrari’s first pole in Monaco since 2000. Poland’s Robert Kubica was fifth for BMW ahead of German Nico Rosberg in a Williams. Twice champion Spaniard Fernando Alonso in a Renault was seventh and Italian Jarno Trulli eighth for Toyota.

That left the two Red Bulls of Australian Mark Webber and David Coulthard in ninth and 10th places. Coulthard had a huge accident but escaped unhurt at the end of the second mini-session.

German Adrian Sutil in a Force India was 19th and his teammate Italian Giancarlo Fisichella was 20th, an outcome that meant they fill the back row of the grid.

Monaco Grid

 

1.  MASSA          Ferrari
2.  RAIKKONEN      Ferrari

3.  HAMILTON       McLaren

4.  KOVALAINEN     McLaren

5.  KUBICA         BMW

6.  ROSBERG        Williams

7.  ALONSO         Renault

8.  TRULLI         Toyota

9.  WEBBER         Red Bull

10. COULTHARD      Red Bull

11. GLOCK          Toyota

12. BUTTON         Honda

13. HEIDFELD       BMW

14. NAKAJIMA       Williams

15. BARRICHELLO    Honda

16. BOURDAIS       Toro Rosso

17. PIQUET         Renault

18. SUTIL          Force India

19. FISICHELLA     Force India

20. VETTEL         Toro Rosso*

 

* Penalised For Changing Gearbox

 

 

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Felipe Massa has won his 3rd consecutive win.

Massa was hunted down by Lewis Hamilton who finished 2nd. Raikkone was also closing in on Hamilton in the final stages, and managed to finish 3rd.

Alonso managed to get ahead of Webber at the start to finish 6th, another good show for the Renault team. The 2 BMW Saubers had a quiet afternoon, with Kubica finishing 4th ahead of team mate Heidfeld in 5th.

Turkish GP Result – 58 Laps

1.  MASSA        Ferrari       
2.  HAMILTON     McLaren       +3.7s
3.  RAIKKONEN    Ferrari       +4.2s
4.  KUBICA       BMW           +21.6s
5.  HEIDFELD     BMW           +38.7s
6.  ALONSO       Renault       +53.7s
7.  WEBBER       Red Bull      +64.2s
8.  ROSBERG      Williams      +71.4s
9.  COULTHARD    Red Bull      +75.2s
10. TRULLI       Toyota        +76.3s
11. BUTTON       Honda         +1 lap
12. KOVALAINEN   McLaren       +1 lap
13. GLOCK        Toyota        +1 lap
14. BARRICHELLO  Honda         +1 lap
15. PIQUET       Renault       +1 lap
16. SUTIL        Force India   +1 lap
17. VETTEL       Toro Rosso    +1 lap
R.  BOURDAIS     Toro Rosso    +34 laps
R.  NAKAJIMA     Williams      +57 laps
R.  FISICHELLA   Force India   +58 laps

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Massa has claimed his 3rd consecutive pole position for the Turkish Grand Prix

Kovalainen was back to his best by securing 2nd place, ahead of team mate Hamilton who managed 3rd. Hamilton was the only front runner on theharder compound tyre. He said he felt in more control of the car using the harder compound.

Raikkonen lines up behind Hamilton in 4th

Fisichella starts last after incurring a 3 grid place penalty for passing a red light in practice.

Starting Grid : 

1.  MASSA         Ferrari     

2.  KOVALAINEN    McLaren        

3.  HAMILTON      McLaren        

4.  RAIKKONEN     Ferrari    

5.  KUBICA        BMW

6.  WEBBER        Red Bull

7.  ALONSO        Renault

8.  TRULLI        Toyota

9.  HEIDFELD      BMW

10. COULTHARD     Red Bull       

11. ROSBERG       Williams     

12. BARRICHELLO   Honda        

13. BUTTON        Honda        

14. VETTEL        Toro Rosso    

15. GLOCK         Toyota       

16. NAKAJIMA      Williams      
17. PIQUET        Renault      
18. BOURDAIS      Toro Rosso    
19. SUTIL         Force India

20. FISICHELLA    Force India*

 

 

*three-place grid penalty for passing red light at pit lane exit in practice

 

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Kimi Raikkonen has finished fastest of the day in 2nd practice this afternoon
The team had to change his gearbox during 1st practice
Mark Webber had a crash into a barrier at turn 6, he broke the front suspension
Alonso couldn’t match his morning time, and ended up 9th, neither could Button who ended up 11th
Hamilton ended up 2nd after a better run in the afternoon, while Massa dropped to 3rd after being fastest in the morning session.

Turkish GP Free Practice Session 2 Times :

 

1.  RAIKKONEN    Ferrari      1m27.543s
2.  HAMILTON     McLaren      1m27.579s
3.  MASSA        Ferrari      1m27.682s
4.  COULTHARD    Red Bull     1m27.763s
5.  KOVALAINEN   McLaren      1m27.954s
6.  KUBICA       BMW          1m28.431s
7.  TRULLI       Toyota       1m28.619s
8.  NAKAJIMA     Williams     1m28.664s
9.  ALONSO       Renault      1m28.681s
10. HEIDFELD     BMW          1m28.817s
11. BUTTON       Honda        1m28.826s
12. GLOCK        Toyota       1m28.849s
13. ROSBERG      Williams     1m28.907s
14. FISICHELLA   Force India  1m29.008s
15. BARRICHELLO  Honda        1m29.024s
16. PIQUET       Renault      1m29.212s
17. VETTEL       Toro Rosso   1m29.462s
18. BOURDAIS     Toro Rosso   1m29.630s
19. WEBBER       Red Bull     1m29.633s
20. SUTIL        Force India  1m30.832s

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Massa has finished fastest in the 1st practice session

Raikkonen had gearbox problems, so ended up last.
Kovalainen was impressive after his crash 2 weeks ago by claiming 2nd place, ahead of team mate Hamilton who was 3rd. Alonso is showing his car has improved by going 4th fastest, ahead of a quick Jenson Button in 5th

Turkish GP Free Practice Session 1 Times :

 

1.  MASSA         Ferrari     1m27.323s

2.  KOVALAINEN    McLaren     1m27.456s

3.  HAMILTON      McLaren     1m27.752s

4.  ALONSO        Renault     1m28.284s

5.  BUTTON        Honda       1m28.919s

6.  NAKAJIMA      Williams    1m29.002s

7.  HEIDFELD      BMW         1m29.024s

8.  BARRICHELLO   Honda       1m29.068s

9.  PIQUET        Renault     1m29.082s

10. GLOCK         Toyota      1m29.103s

11. TRULLI        Toyota      1m29.329s

12. KUBICA        BMW         1m29.330s

13. ROSBERG       Williams    1m29.367s

14. SUTIL         Force India 1m29.756s

15. FISICHELLA    Force India 1m29.811s

16. WEBBER        Red Bull    1m30.088s

17. COULTHARD     Red Bull    1m30.340s

18. BOURDAIS      Toro Rosso  1m30.388s

19. VETTEL        Toro Rosso  1m30.426s

20. RAIKKONEN     Ferrari     1m30.732s

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Lewis Hamilton has made his stage debut in a historical stage show called Troya. He met a local dance troop where he was hoisted into the sky on wires over a huge Trojan Horse.
The dancers were there to perform the Troy (Troya), portraying the legendary Trojan War. The show depicts 3,000 years of Anatolian history, beginning with the famous legend.

It was part of a promotional event before Sunday’s Turkish Grand prix

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It has been confirmed on Friday that the qualifying procedures will now change after the Super Aguri team’s withdrawal from the championship. Race stewards said that with only 20 cars now on the grid, 5 rather than 6 drivers would be excluded after each of the first two parts of Saturday qualifying.
This will still leave 10 cars fighting for pole position in the final 10-minute phase.

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Heikki Kovalainen has been given the all clear to take part in the Turkish Grand Prix.
Kovalainen was knocked unconscious after a wheel rim failure on his car sent him into the tyre wall during the Spanish Grand Prix.
Kovalainen had to have a fitness test this morning in Turkey to see if he was fit to race on Sunday.
“I am obviously very pleased with the decision by the FIA Medical Team,” Kovalainen said.
“I arrived here today feeling confident that I would pass the FIA test as I feel 100% and if I had not felt 100 percent I would have told the team already and stayed at home.”
“My preparation for this weekend has gone well and we have done a lot of fitness training. Obviously a big thumbs up for all the FIA safety standards and the guys in Spain who worked hard to get me out of the car safely.” “I think the accident probably looked worse than it was for me. I had a little headache but was back in training almost immediately. I now look forward to the rest of the weekend and the rest of the season.”

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The Super Aguri F1 Team has now confirmed its withdrawal from the 2008 FIA Formula One World Championship.

Aguri Suzuki issued the following statement :

“In order to realize my dream to become an owner of a Formula One Team, I applied for a grid position in the FIA Formula One World Championship in November 2005. Since then, I have participated in the championship for two years and four months as the Super Aguri F1 Team, but regretfully I must inform you that the team will be ceasing its racing activities as of today.”
“The team has competed against the many car manufacturer backed teams and has succeeded in obtaining the first points after only the 22nd race finishing in ninth place overall in the 2007 Constructors’ Championship.”
“However, the breach of contract by the promised partner SS United Oil & Gas Company resulted in the loss of financial backing and immediately put the team into financial difficulties. 
 Also, the change in direction of the environment surrounding the team, in terms of the use of customer chassis, has affected our ability to find partners.”
“Meanwhile, with the help of Honda, we have somehow managed to keep the team going, but we find it difficult to establish a way to continue the activities in the future within the environment surrounding F1 and as a result, I have concluded to withdraw from the Championship.”
“I would like to express my deepest thanks to Honda, Bridgestone, the sponsors, all the people who have given us advise during various situations over the past couple of years all the Team Staff who have kept their motivations high and always done their best, Anthony Davidson who has always pushed to the limit despite the very difficult conditions, Takuma Sato who has been with us from the very start and has always fought hard and led the team and lastly our fans from all over the world who have loyally supported the Super Aguri F1 Team.”

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A Super Aguri source has confirmed that the team’s equipment trucks and motor home have been locked out of Turkey circuit
Officials at the circuit which is owned by Bernie Ecclestone have denied Super Aguri access when they arrived to prepare for this Sunday’s race.
The trucks are currently parked outside the circuit
Super Aguri team members were told by circuit officials that they had been instructed by Ecclestone’s company to deny access to the paddock. 
When Super Aguri management contacted Eccelstone they were then told that Nick Fry had instructed Ecclestone that Super Aguri would not be getting the go ahead to compete in Turkey.
It is understood that Aguri Suzuki who is currently in Japan, is now pushing hard to have the original planned Tuesday meeting fast-forwarded to Monday.
He is hoping the proposed buyout deal with Weigl will be given the go ahead
If not it looks like Super Aguri will be excluded from this weekends race

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Rumours in the F1 paddocks are that Ferrari and Renault are looking into the services of Robert Kubica.
Kubica has been a big star in the 2008 season so far for BMW Sauber, already securing a pole position, and currently third in the drivers’ championship classification.
The German newspaper Bild claims that officials both for Renault and Ferrari have made enquiries as to how long Kubica is under contract to BMW. 
It is understood that he is committed to BMW Sauber only until 2009, then an option to extend the deal can only be made by mutual consent.

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Kimi Raikkonen To Retire?

Ferrari team boss Stefano Domenicali has said that rumours about Kimi Raikkonen retiring from formula one with a second consecutive world title are complete rubbish
Raikkonens contract runs out at the end of 2009, and he is undecided about whether he will sign a new one.
His now 9-point lead in the drivers championship has even sparked some rumours that he might try to break his Ferrari contract and walk away from the cockpit as early as after November’s Brazilian grand prix.
“I have heard this rumour and there is not a grain of truth to it,” he angrily told the Swiss publication Motorsport Aktuell.
“Kimi is motivated from head to toe and I know that he is not thinking of retiring,” he added.

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It is widely rumoured in the F1 paddock that former Ferrari frontman Jean Todt is being groomed to replace Max Mosley.

A vote of confidence in the FIA Senate in Paris on 3 June will determine whether Mosley must resign over the recent sex scandal, or be allowed to remain in his role until the expiry of his fourth term in October 2009, something he has repeatedly insisted he firmly intends to do.
It would also explain Williams unwillingness to sign a statement calling for Mosley’s resignation in Barcelona last weekend. All of the eleven teams met in the Toyota motorhome in the Circuit de Catalunya’s paddock on the orders of F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone.
Red Bull’s refusal to put its name to the agreement was perhaps no great surprise, with owner Dietrich Mateschitz being a close friend of Mosley’s, the similar resistance of Williams, said to have infuriated Ecclestone, is a little harder to understand. It has been suggested, however, that neither Sir Frank Williams nor Patrick Head would sign the statement as both are sternly opposed to Todt becoming the Englishman’s successor.

Mosley and Todt are expected to attend the Monaco Grand Prix next month. It will be Mosley’s first public appearance in F1 since the News of the World’s front page news on his private life just over four weeks ago.
Mosley has also engaged the services of an expert investigative company in an effort to uncover the source of the surveillance that led to what the News of the World called his ‘sick Nazi orgy with 5 hookers’ coming to the tabloid newspaper’s attention. In July he is set to take on the News of the World in the courts, seeking ‘unlimited damages’ for breach of privacy and he has always vigorously denied any ‘Nazi connotations’ to the matter.
It is believed the covert investigation into his private life, however, was actually conducted at significant expense over a long period of time by a third party, with German publication Auto Motor und Sport suggesting the aforementioned source could even emanate from within the grand prix paddock. Mosley is also said to have commissioned the British private detective outfit Quest to carry out surveillance on the prostitute who blew the whistle on his activities.

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