Hoping of serious challenge
Lewis Hamilton is hoping that Ferrari will be able to challenge Mercedes next season.
The 30- year old is on the brink of successfully defending and taking his third world title this season. Ferrari has been a lot closer to Mercedes this season but they have only beaten Mercedes for pure pace in qualifying at the Singapore Grand Prix.
Hamilton wants to see Ferrari as a competitive force to add some excitement in the sport and sees Sebastian Vettel, who is now second in the standings this year, as a real threat. He told ESPN that “Sebastian is always going to be one of the strongest opponents and it depends how you look at it.”
He added that he is the next strongest opponent will be his team-mate Nico Rosberg saying he “anticipate(s) Nico will continue to push, but of course I hope we do have a race with the Ferraris, I think it would be good for the sport. Hopefully with us being in front but still a good race.”
But Hamilton says he is determined to keep delivering championships for the team.
News – In – Brief
- Raffaele Marciello will stand in during practice for the United States Grand Prix next Friday in Austin. The Italian will drive in his fourth practice for Sauber in place of Felipe Nasr. The team is also marking his 400th Grand Prix in Austin.
- Force India are waiting to upgrade their wind tunnel because of planned rule changes in 2017. The team are only using a 50 per cent model, rather than the 60 per cent that is allowed under the rules.
Magnussen leaves McLaren
Kevin Magnussen will leave McLaren at the end of the year drove for the team last year will leave following the final race of the campaign in Abu Dhabi. The news broke this morning with Magnussen confirming it this afternoon on Twitter.
The Dane tweeted “I want to say thank you to my friends at @McLarenF1. There are a lot of great people there. #GoodLuckGuys” followed by a second tweet “Shame it didn’t work out but I’ll #NeverGiveUpOnTheDream. #OneTarget. #WatchThisSpace”
Speaking later Magnussen said “I didn’t hear anything for a few days, and then, after about a week, when I saw an email from Ron’s [Dennis, McLaren chairman] personal assistant Justine [Bowen] in my inbox, I had an idea of what it might be.”
He said he learned the news on his birthday. McLaren boss Ron Denis said in a statement “Kevin has always done a very impressive and professional job for McLaren in the five years since he joined our Young Driver Programme in 2010.” Adding “ he raced very well alongside Jenson, who is a hugely experienced and very quick World Champion.”
Magnesson has been linked to Haas for next season but it is understood that Esteban Gutierrez is due to be confirmed as the second driver at some stage in the build up to the Mexican Grand Prix. This leaves two options Lotus/Renault or Manor for next season.
Not too late for three car teams – Wolff
Mercedes boss Toto Wolff says it is not too late to introduce three car teams next year if three teams drop out. There is questions over the future of Red Bull sister team Toro Rosso and Lotus.
Red Bull and Toto Rosso currently do not have power units for 2016 after parting with Renault with Lotus struggling financially and could leave the sport if there not taken over by Renault. If all three teams drop out it will allow Mercedes, Ferrari and McLaren to run three cars. If Red Bull were to say and only run one team they would also be able to run a third car.
Wolff says Mercedes still have time and it is possible but “The question is about how to finance the additional car, but logistically, it is possible.
He added “We have crunched the numbers and I wouldn’t want to quote them officially, but all the teams were asked to look at the numbers a while ago and it is all pretty similar, so financially viable.”
Wolff says it would help smaller teams who could raise money by placing drivers and give more revenue. It will give young drivers a chance of driving in a competitive car in a competitive environment.
Ecclestone wades into FIFA scandal
Formula One boss Berine Ecclestone has said president of FIFA Sepp Blatter should remain in president no matter how mired in scandal he is. Blatter was suspended after he was put under investigation by Swiss police for corruption claims concerning the payment are investigated.
Ecclestone told a Russian TV “i don’t think he should ever step down, and I don’t think he should ever have been challenged because it is due to him that we have a lot of countries around the world now playing football.”
He added “If these people allegedly have been corrupted to make things happen in their country, it’s good. It’s a tax football had to pay.” Ecclestone also says countries should be run by editorships saying “I don’t think there’s any place for democracy. Anywhere”