Magnussen passes tests for Monza
Kevin Magnussen has passed further medical test which confirms he should be fit to take part in this weekend’s Italian Grand Prix.
Magnussen crashed heavily in the opening laps Sunday’s Belgian Grand Prix with him being taken to a local hospital in Verviers for x-rays and scans after initially visiting the Spa circuit’s medical centre.
He suffered a heavily bruised left ankle in the crash, although the tests at the time showed no fracture or serious injury, leading to him being released that evening. Renault confirmed that he has under gone more test and they ndicate he will be able to race at Monza.
Magnussen will undergo a final examination by the FIA medical delegate at the circuit on Thursday, before being officially passed fit to race. Magnussen told Autosport “I’m feeling much better, which is very good news. I’ve had several checks that show I am fit to race in Monza, and I am sure I will be in the car this weekend.”
“We were running in the top-10 in Belgium and I’m very motivated to repeat this again in Italy.”
Verstappen getting ‘protection’ – Villeneuve
Former world champion Jacques Villeneuve has claimed that the lack of action over Max Verstappen’s aggressive driving suggests the Dutchman is getting “protection” from the FIA.
Verstappen has found himself in the firing line for his latest defensive moves at the Belgian Grand Prix, with Kimi Raikkonen claiming that if he does not calm down then he will cause a big accident. Villeneuve believes that the FIA are protecting him and reluctant to punish him, because they do not want to take away his box office attraction.
Speaking to Motorsport.com the Canadian said “The issue is the FIA, because it looks like he’s got protection. Look in Germany. He weaved on the straight, so Nico [Rosberg] missed his braking [point]. They go a bit wide – Nico gets a penalty. For something even less than… and it wasn’t even his fault.”
“So there is something that is wrong. I don’t know. It’s something that makes me angry, but that’s just the way it is. Twenty years ago someone would have put him in a tree.” Villeneuve says that Verstappen didn’t accept he had a bad start and Kimi Raikkonen ‘destroyed his race.’
When told that Verstappen doesn’t care about making friends in F1, Villeneuve said: “No, and he doesn’t care. Which is fine. That’s right. But you need to have just a little bit of respect. Because you all live in this little thing together.”
Villeneuve said he doesn’t expect other drivers to take matters in their own hands on track – as he insists the ball is in the FIA court.
Monza deal done – Government
Italian officials say that Monza will remain on the calendar after agreeing a new deal. The circuit near Milan has held every race except one but had no deal beyond this weekend’s race
In a Facebook post the president of the Lombardy region Roberto Maroni said “The Grand Prix will stay in Monza. With a few days to go until the signing of the contract, I’m very satisfied.”
Yesterday Berine Ecclestone told Autosport “I’d be surprised if we didn’t reach an agreement.”
Meanwhile the Italian Prime Minster Matteo Renzi’s cabinet Under-secretary Luca Lotti has also said a deal has been done. Lotti Tweeted “We worked so hard, it’s finally official: GP stays at Monza. Teamwork, as in Formula one, pay! #GPMonza”
Sources in Italy say the deal is for three years.
Mercedes seek stronger partnership with Manor
Mercedes boss Toto Wolff says that the team could strengthen their relationship with Manor in the future but says they are not planning to propose a ‘buy-out’ or to have a direct influence on the way it is operated.
Manor is having their most competitive season since joining the F1 in 2010, with their performance improving made possible by a landmark engine deal with Mercedes. Mercedes have helped the team overhauling there management structure.
Mercedes have influence over there driver line up with them currently having their two driver’s. Wolff says there is scope for the working relationship to improve but there no plans for it to be the official b team. Wolff told Crash.net “When we started the F1 programme a few years ago, there was no capacity for setting up a junior programme.”
“ Today things have changed… obviously we made an agreement with Manor for Pascal, which works well and then the opportunity came up because Haryanto was out and we had a couple of weeks of negotiations and found a reasonable deal”
He added Mercedes are not are not planning to own any part of Manor but there could be co-operation between the two teams.
F1 will be another category – Sainz
Next years cars are exactly what Formula One needs and will make the sport look like “another category” according to Toro Rosso’s Carlos Sainz. Next season new regulations will have wider tyres, revised aerodynamics and bigger tyres as part of an overhaul of the technical regulations.
Sainz has already had a look at the teams new car in the wind tunnel and says it is excited about the prospect. He told Autosport “I’ve seen it in the windtunnel. I must say, it looks like another category to this year. That’s what F1 needs.
“We call it hybrid F1. It’s hybrid, it’s not quite full F1. The car next year looks like a proper F1 car.” Red Bull driver Daniel Ricciardo has also spoke about the changes believes the faster cars will make qualifying better in 2017 but is unsure if it will enhance the races.
“If the cars are faster, that’s cool. The race probably less so, but in qualifying if we can really be flat-out in Turn 3 in Barcelona and close to flat-out at Turn 9 in Barcelona, for example, that’s cool.”
He says it will put drivers on the line on a qualifying lap will already make it more fun. But says should the race eventually mellow out in a similar style to this year, he doesn’t think that’s tragic, think that’s OK.
Stewards should shy away from penalties
Sebastian Vettel says stewards should shy away from awarding penalties for impeding and instead leave the drivers involved to sort it out among themselves.
Vettel ranted on team radio about Renault’s Kevin Magnussen during final practice at Spa last Saturday when he felt he was held up by the Dane. Both drivers were called to the stewards and no penalty was awarded. Speaking to Autosport he said “We went to the stewards, we looked at it and it was fine.
“Initially I wasn’t so happy with his move but we spoke about it and I think that is the way we should approach it. I don’t think a penalty is the appropriate reaction.” He added.
Vettel says that is inevitable drivers will be caught and there runs be messed up at some point because they want to make space to create conditions for a clean lap.
“You want to have a clean run, you don’t want to be in traffic when you start your lap, especially at tracks like Spa – that’s what everybody was up to. Sometimes, you have a situation where two drivers want to go for the same bit of Tarmac and you can talk about impeding.”
Magnussen agreed praising his rival for the approach he took with the stewards. “No one went off the track and there was no contact, I left room for him. He was annoyed at the time, but when we spoke to the stewards, he was very calm.”