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Have fans been sold a pup?

NEWS STORY
28/02/2017

Though we try, God how we try, to be positive, at times it is almost impossible.

Not for the first time, the sport has pushed ahead with its own plans, the powers-that-be ignoring the will of the people, insisting 'we know best'.

While fans greeted talk of wider tyres with joy, there was general dismay at the fact that the sport would still rely heavily on aerodynamics, even though, as any barroom pundit can tell you, mechanical grip - over aero grip - will produce better racing.

Just one day into pre-season testing and some of our worst fears are being realised.

Ignoring the fact that Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes continue to top the timesheets, the German car - and, thankfully, its rival from Maranello running like clockwork - drivers are already admitting that overtaking will be more difficult and that the durability of the Pirelli rubber means one-stoppers are likely to be the norm.

"The tyres are so hard that they don't drop off," said Hamilton. "Normally you get a lot of degradation with these tyres - but these don't degrade, they're very consistent, and there's not a big difference between the feeling on the first lap and the last lap. Most likely we'll be doing more one-stoppers."

In terms of overtaking, the Briton poured more salt in the wound.

"I was behind a couple of cars and it was harder to follow, as we expected," he admitted, "and since there's no real degradation there's less mistakes, less overtaking.

"That's my prediction, I might be wrong," he thoughtfully added, "we'll find out."

And to further twist the knife...

"I still think we're the team to beat," he concluded, "but we have a lot of work ahead of us."

The Briton's fears in terms of overtaking we're echoed by a number of other drivers not least veteran Felipe Massa.

"Definitely from the driving point of view, it's much nicer for the driver," said the Williams driver, who ended the day third on the timesheets just 0.311s off the pace.

"For the show, I don't know," he admitted. "I'm sure it will be more difficult to overtake. Today driving behind cars you lost a lot more downforce, also the car is much bigger. We'll see, but I think it will be more difficult to overtake."

Furthermore, at a time there is increasing talk of curbing costs, there is talk of banning the likes of fins and T-wings – not forgetting certain suspension systems – after the teams have spent countless hundreds of thousands developing them.

All together now.... "Arghhhhhhhh!!!"

Check out our Tuesday gallery from Barcelona, here.

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READERS COMMENTS

 

1. Posted by petes, 28/02/2017 20:23

"Can't wait for racing to start and we get to the old 'dirty air making close racing impossible' theme."

Rating: Positive (3)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

2. Posted by Jezzer, 28/02/2017 19:37

"They may have said that the cars will be faster and they may have said that there will be more downforce, both of which are correct. BUT, they told us the cars will look more aggressive and "sexy".........is it just me or do they still look very much like last years cars?
NOTHING has changed guys....not even my dislike of current F1.
"

Rating: Neutral (0)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

3. Posted by Hardliner, 28/02/2017 18:12

"No surprises on the track, the big downer of the day is listening to Bratches prattling on with his vapid ideas to make everything more exciting. Sadly, Mr Brawn, for the time being you are employed to peddle beer and hot dogs, that is the path that Liberty have chosen, we're getting 'Superbowl F1'. Superbowelmovement, more like it........."

Rating: Positive (1)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

4. Posted by NS Biker, 28/02/2017 16:40

"Pirelli will bring softer faster grippier tyres once the season is underway.
If the teamsare already approaching the 5 seconds jump from 2015 after 1.5 testing days ..... they could be going a LOT faster a couple of months from now. Then what happens.??
Who knows, maybe we will see Grooved Tyres back again.?"

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5. Posted by Spindoctor, 28/02/2017 15:35

"Hands up anyone who is surprised.
So that's nobody then (leastways nobody likely to read these pages).

I think it might prove to be Liberty who has been 'sold a pup'"

Rating: Positive (2)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

6. Posted by edllorca, 28/02/2017 15:26

"Many fans were not buying the pup from day 1. We appeared to be the only ones who knew from first description that his was the wrong path. May this be the last sight of the old regime, Brawn and Liberty have a tough row to hoe, may F! not self destruct before they can save it."

Rating: Positive (1)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

7. Posted by LukeP, 28/02/2017 11:58

"I think @hussainahm has a point - Pirelli have probably played it *very* safe so far, as they weren't sure how the added downforce would affect their tyres. I'm all for some degredation - it does play to different drivers strengths - but not the farce we had a couple of years ago where drivers who pushed for even one lap just roasted their tyres.

RE downforce - I do think we (collectively fans of F1, not necessarily the ones who bother to follow testing etc.) have been "sold a pup." This was all about "improving the show" so that more overtaking would happen (and not by DRS... these are never heart in the mouth moments like you get when two cars are fighting it round corners a la Verstappen/Ricciardo in Malaysia last year). Increased mechanical grip - yay! More downforce so harder to follow? Noo!"

Rating: Positive (2)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

8. Posted by GrahamG, 28/02/2017 9:28

"Why do you have this total preoccupation with pit stops. Forced pitstops due to poor tyre quality are as artificial as DRS and endless grid penalties. Some of the best drives in the past few years have been when drivers defeated the stupid tyres and did one or two stop races while everyone else shuttled in and out of the pits. In addition the huge number of people devoted solely to pitstops increases cost as does the plethora of tyres.
A better solution would be durable tyres (one compound for each race) and a minimum stationery time in a pitstop of 1 minute. This would allow for genuine problems to be analysed and would eliminate the costs of the endless and confusing pit stops.
Enforced pitstops are also one of the things which makes races extremely hard to follow for the new or casual viewer"

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9. Posted by CL, 28/02/2017 9:28

"Don't see how we were sold a pup, none of us have been deceived- they said the cars would be faster and they are. They said there would be more downforce and there is. The only way to have been deceived is if we did it ourselves out of hope."

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10. Posted by hussainahm, 28/02/2017 7:14

"If it's true about the tyres then probably Pirelli will be sending Mediums and softer tyres."

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