F1 Today – 23/11/2015

F1 Today

Closing gap not good enough

Ferrari say that being closer to Mercedes in 2016 is not good enough saying they must get in front of the German manufacturer. The Italian manufacturer is preparing to make another step forward next season.

Speaking to Motorsports.com about his expectations for 2016 Team Principal  Maurizio Arrivabene said “If you want my honest expectation, it is not to be closer to them but to be in front of them. I will tell you with humility, but being closer – we are closer even now. We must be in front next year.”

Speaking about the comments made earlier by Mercedes non-executive chairman Niki Lauda that Ferrari has match Mercedes on engine Arrivabene said “If Niki says so, I am quite suspicious to be honest. But looking at the data, we are there, because our engine partner did a great job.

He added “I want to take this opportunity to thank all of them because the engine is the core of the car and we have other parts of the car where we have to work.”

Arrivabene says next year we can’t go on with the same engie in 2016 and the team can’t be in the same place as this year.

 

Lotus takeover done – Lopez

The owner and Team Principal Gerard Lopez of Louts says the takeover deal by Renault is almost done. Talks between Lopez and the French manufacturer began earlier this year with a letter of intent being signed in September.

Speaking to Sky Sports Lopez said “”I understand that Renault still have some things which they need to clear with Formula One and FOM (Formula One Management), but as far as we are concerned we are pretty much at a deal now.”

He says the car manufacturer has asked him to stay on. The French car giant who ran the team until 2011 is expected to confirm the announcement in the next few days.

Lotus have been facing a uncertain future with debts owed to HMRC who have given them until December 7th to settle the deal. In Japan the team were locked out of a hospitality unit intended for their use after failing to pay Grand Prix circuit organisers.

Also the team were impounded because of a dispute with former reserve driver Charles Pic.

There is a dispute between FOM and Renault over ‘Heritage Payments’ which the team wants as recognition of their past contribution to the sport.

 

News – In – brief

Form into 2016 – Vijay Mallya believes Force India can carry their strong 2015 form into next season due to stability in the rules. Although the team began 2015 on the back foot, the introduction of a B-spec car brought about a strong second half to the campaign.

 

Still aiming for a race seat – Wehrlein

Mercedes reserve driver Pascal Wehrlein has told Sky Sports that he is still aiming to be on the grid next year. There are only two seats left with the Manor team who have a new technical partnership with Mercedes.

Since the deal between the two team Wehrlein has been heavily linked to a seat with Manor. Speaking to Sky Sports he said “At the moment, I really don’t know. I hope I will get a drive in Formula 1, but there are not many cockpits left for next year so it won’t be easy.”

Adding “I hope that we can find something and if not, I think I will do something similar to this year, so DTM and reserve driver and a few tests and then hopefully 2017.”

He says his biggest target this year was to win the DTM championship which is the most prestigious in touring car. He said “It is great, it was my big target this year to win the DTM championship I was still 20-years-old at Hockenheim when I won it and to be the youngest DTM champion ever feels great.”

He confirmed he would be driving during the final test of 2015 in Abu Dahbi next week.

 

Triple efforts to catch top two – Massa

Felipe Massa says that Williams needs to “triple” their efforts over the winter in order to catch Mercedes and Ferrari. Williams have clinched third place this season in the constructors championship.

The team wanted to get more after a good form in pre-season testing which they haven’t lived up to. Massa explained “For sure we always want more, expected maybe to be fighting for second place in the constructors’ championship, and it was not possible.”

He told Motorsport.com that Ferrari made huge step forward and were a bit to quick for Williams and he team did a good season to finish third in the championship.

“But we want more, and we are pushing so hard to see if we can make a triple improvement for next year – which is the only way to catch the guys in front.” He added.

Massa says as well as progress in 2016 he believes that rule changes which could make cars up to five-seconds per lap quicker could offer Williams a big opportunity to become more competitive.

He however was cautious saying they need more time to understand the changes.

 

Manor confirm line up for testing

Rio Haryanto and Jordan King have been confirmed to test with Manor at next weeks young driver test in Abu Dhabi next week.

Next Tuesday test at the Yas Marina Circuit will allow tyre manufacturer Pirelli to test the new construction of slick tyres for 2016 as well as a new ultrasoft compound to be introduced next season.

Both drivers will also take part in the GP2 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix which supports the F1 race. While Haryton has driven for the team in testing three times when it was Marussia, King will get his first outing as a test driver.

Haryton said “I’m really looking forward to being back with the team at the Abu Dhabi test. In many ways it is essentially the same team, although the car is quite different.”

Adding “I feel much better prepared for this test, and after a very competitive season in GP2, I can’t wait to show how much I have developed to become a more complete driver.”

Both men will be looking to impress as Manor hasn’t confirmed any drivers for 2016 and are the only team left with any seats.

 

Vettel wins the Nations Cup

Sebastian Vettel guided Germany to victory in the 2015 Nations Cup at The Stadium at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.

Vettel beat the nine-times Le Mans 24 Hours winner Tom Kristensen to become Champion of Champions after making it to the final shoot out for the first time in his sixth attempt.

Vettel said “Of course I’m very happy and honoured to win – but that took a while! A lot of world class racing drivers have won this trophy. I’ve tried to win this many times and failed many times but finally I’ve succeeded.”

Former Red Bull Driver and BBC commentator David Coulthard was knocked out by the German in the semi-final. While team-mate Susie Wolff was knocked out by Coulthard in her final race before retirement.

Nico Hulkenberg also lost out to Vettel in the quarter final. Felipe Massa also was knocked out by Coulthard. Nelson Piquet jr, Nico Hulkenberg and Daniel Ricciardo also took part.

There was also support for Michael Schumacher after his Skiing accident in Grenoble in December 2013 with a banner for the institute for advanced research into brain and spinal cord injuries ICM.

 

Jack

Jack is responsible for the day-to-day running of Formula One Vault. He brings you all the brilliant content. Has an obsession with all things Formula One and anything with an engine.

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