More wins says Bottas as he seeks title bid
Valtteri Bottas says he needs to have more wins next season if he is going to mount a serious title challenge next season. The Mercedes driver won the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, giving him his thirteenth podium of the season.
However, the Finn has only taken three wins compared to his team-mate four times champion Lewis Hamilton’s nine. Also, the only time Mercedes had a retirement and failed to score with both cars was in Barcelona. Speaking to Sky Sports, Bottas said “The target next year is to win more. With the points system, you need to win races if you are to win the title.”
“Of course you need to be consistent and for me the biggest thing was inconsistency through the season. There were times when l performed really well and there were times when l performed not so well. That was the main reason Lewis beat me. He was on it all the time.”
Bottas bounced back from his mid-season slump where he dropped out of title contention. He once again, described his season as “disappointing”. Saying that he always sets his targets high, and his target was to be champion as he knew it was possible.
Bottas says the most important things he learned was working with the race team and says was at the factory and working with Hamilton. Saying it will help me a lot next year.
Asked about his ambitions for 2018? “You can always try to be near perfect. I will work harder than ever this winter and try to be better than ever next year,” he added.
Mercedes dominance worries Brawn
Formula One’s motorsport boss Ross Brawn says he is worried that the domination of the sport by Mercedes will continue next season. Since the current engine regulations were introduced in 2014, Mercedes have won eighty-two percent of the Grand Prix’s.
Despite Ferrari being a lot closer to Mercedes this season, the silver arrows still finished one hundred and forty-six points ahead in the constructors.
The fact that Mercedes won both championships was good for the team, as they overcame a last-minute driver change because of Nico Rosberg’s surprise retirement as well as a change of its technical director.
Brawn who was team boss between 2010 and 2013, says he is concerned his old team could restore an even bigger gap over its rivals next year. Speaking at the Autosport Awards, Brawn said “They’ve got a great group of people, but my slight worry is that they will get even stronger now.”
“They’ve had a change of senior management, Paddy Lowe left and James Allison came, and that was in the middle of a car [regulation] change, which is not easy.”
Brawn pointed out the dominance of Mercedes is a turn off for fans, he says that the balance of the season was not bad from an overtaking perspective, but has promised to introduce regulations that help contribute towards better racing.
He says he is optimistic that next season can be as competitive and hopes for a strong year.
Ocon calls for perfection
Force India’s Esteban Ocon believes the team needs to be “perfect everywhere” next season if they are to stay ahead of both McLaren and Renault.
Ocon and his teammate Sergio Perez both had strong season’s allowing the British based team to fourth place in the constructors’ championship for the second consecutive season.
In a video from Motorsport.tv programme The Flying Lap, Ocon outlines the challenge Force India faces next year. He said “We need to be perfect on every point next year,” said Ocon.
“I hope to start on a higher point and we need to be perfect everywhere because McLaren are coming back, Renault are coming back, so we need to be on top of our game.”
Overtaking falls by half in 2017
Analysis from Pirelli shows that overtaking in 2017 fell by half compared to 2016, representing the worst season for overtaking since DRS was introduced in 2011.
Analysis from the Italian manufacturer of the first season of the new regulations showed that overtakes had fallen to four hundred and thirty-five, compared to eight hundred and sixty-six. That is a fall of twenty-eight percent.
Pirelli claim the figures only take into account if they take place ‘during complete flying laps (so not on the opening lap) and maintained all the way to the lap’s finish line’, and that ‘position changes due to major mechanical problems or lapping/unlapping are not counted’.
Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo did the most overtaking moves this season, while teammate Max Verstappen has tied with Lewis Hamilton on the driver who has been overtaken the least.
This season Pirelli supplied teams with 38,788, 33,520 were supplied for race weekends and 5,268 for testing. 25,572 were slicks and 13,016 were rain or intermediate tyres and the total number of tyres used during race weekends: 12,920, of which 11,532 were slick tyres and 1,388were rain or intermediates.
During tyre testing, they have covered 14,285km testing 198 different prototype compounds, 147 slick, 18 intermediates and 33 wet. This season they tweeted around 2,400 tweets about Formula One.
Liberty looking at track design
Formula One’s managing director of motorsport Ross Brawn says that Liberty Media is investigating whether changes need to track design to improve racing.
While research is ongoing into car design, to allow them to follow more closely and increase overtaking, it has emerged that research is also underway into how track designs can be improved. Brawn ays if the sport can better understand what makes a good track for racing, then current venues can be tweaked.
Speaking of potential long-term changes to the sport to improve overtaking, he told Motorsport.com “The aerodynamic programme is now starting to pick up pace, and the work on circuit development is happening.”
“We have already got engaged with some circuits about possible modifications to improve racing.” Recently it was understood that Melbourne was considering changing a section of its circuit to add an overtaking spot, but in the end elected against the idea for now because it was not convinced the tweaks would definitely improve matters.
FIA Hall of Fame inducts all champions
The FIA have inducted all thirty-three Formula One champions into the new Hall of Fame, at an event in Paris on Monday. The Hall of Fame has been created to celebrate achievements of drivers across motorsport, but in its first year focused solely on F1 world champions.
Alain Prost, Sir Jackie Stewart and Mario Andretti were among the former champions attending the event as well as more recent winners Fernando Alonso, Sebastian Vettel and Nico Rosberg. The public upon request will open the Hall of Fame in Paris for viewing and it will expand at the FIA headquarters in Geneva.
President Jean Todt said, “The FIA Hall of Fame has been created to highlight the values that run through motorsport and the champions who have been and who still are the exemplars of the FIA’s values of commitment, integrity, respect and sportsmanship.”
“This is the first stage of an ambitious project: the FIA Hall of Fame will soon expand to the FIA headquarters in Geneva, and other champions and other disciplines will be in the spotlight in the coming years.” All living champions have already been inducted.
Speaking on Sunday, four times champion Sebastian Vettel said “It’s been incredible to see all these names, all these faces. Obviously a lot of them I only know from what I have read, what I have seen, but I think it’s a great idea.
“There’s so much history in the sports, it’s still so alive, and thanks to events like tonight’s, we’ll keep it like that.”