Monday, 28 February 2011

Red Bull To Use Infiniti Engines

Reigning World Champions Red Bull have announced a new engine deal for the 2011 season.

The team will continue to run the same Renault engines as before, but now rebranded as Infiniti.

Infiniti are an American luxury car company, part owned by both Nissan and Renault, however they are relatively unknown outside of the United States.

The deal will see Red Bull receive their engines for free, whereas last year the team had to pay the standard fee to use a customer engine, the cost of which equates to almost £7 million.

Although from a performance point of view, this deal will have little effect on the team, it will free up some of the budget which can be spent elsewhere.

This deal is expected to be announced officially later in the week.

For more, see or visit Infiniti's website

Sunday, 27 February 2011

Has Formula One Become Too Complicated?

Formula One drivers no longer have to simply drive their car. There is so much else they have to do at the same time.

For example, it is not considered unreasonable to expect a driver to use the KERS 'boost' button, the adjustable rear wing and to make other adjustments to the car on the same straight.

On occasions last season, Fernando Alonso was seen to operate his 'F-Duct' with his left hand and adjust some settings on his steering wheel with his right hand, effectively travelling at up to 200mph with no hands on the wheel!

Although F-Ducts are banned for 2011, the additional performance enhancers do raise a question of safety, as drivers should be fully focussed on the track ahead and the other drivers they share the track with. This has led some drivers to question the necessity of all the different driver assists.
After his first test session in the 2011 spec Williams, Rubens Barrichello commented:
"The only drawback from the day is that the number of buttons on the steering wheel can distract you from the driving"
"I don't think it's a danger, but I think it's a concern. In terms of execution, the additional controls are obviously necessary, but people have different steering wheels, so drivers may therefore be able to reach some buttons easier than others."
"The problem is you are taking your eye off the road. There is not a single straight where I don't press a button and change gear. In my role in the Grand Prix Drivers' Association (GPDA) we will keep talking about this, but I think the FIA will let us practice a little more. I think the strong comments will come now but will lessen as people get used to things."

(For this story in full visit

Any drivers who struggle to utilise all the new tools at their disposal may find they miss out on valuable time, as Nico Rosberg explained:
"Sometimes its very complicated out there because my mind is concentrating on testing something, at the same time, I have someone shouting in my ear You forgot KERS, you forgot KERS!"
"Once you forget it, youre in a mess. Its quite confusing sometimes."

(For this story in full visit

To give you an idea of how much more technical the sport has become in recent years, here is a YouTube video - onboard with Michael Schumacher and Damon Hill in 1994.

For comparison, here is a 2011 Team Lotus steering wheel, which was loaned to BBC F1 presenter Jake Humphrey for a charity event (@jakehumphreyf1 on and this is from a team who don't have KERS!

Hopefully, with one more test still to go before the new season, the drivers will have enough time to become fully familiar with their cars.

Alternatively, F1 journalist James Allen has suggested that now is the time to really encourage teams to employ female drivers, due to their superior multi-tasking abilities! (To read his full article, visit

Saturday, 26 February 2011

The Pros and Cons of KERS

The 2011 Formula One season sees the re-introduction of KERS (Kinetic Energy Recovery System), which stores energy used by the car (for example, under braking) and stores the energy to be used as a performance boost, activated using a 'Push To Pass' button on the steering wheel.

KERS can only be operated by the driver, and is limited to a fixed amount of boost (equivalent to just a few seconds) per lap.

As the system effectively recycles energy, usually by recharging a battery stored in the car, it is seen as a 'green' performance enhancer and is therefore used in an effort to increase the sport's environmental image.

Use of the system is encouraged, but not compulsory. It is thought, however, that teams using KERS will see a significant performance increase over their rivals. The nine established teams are expected to begin the season with a KERS system in place, but apparently Marussia Virgin and HRT will not use the system in 2011. Team Lotus may introduce KERS to their cars later in the season.

The main disadvantage of KERS is the significant weight of the battery which can hamper performance, as explained on the website:
"A typical KERS system weighs around 35 kilograms. Formula One cars must weigh at least 620kg (including the driver), but traditionally teams build the car to be considerably lighter and then use up 70kg of ballast to bring it up to weight. This means that teams with KERS have less ballast to move around the car and hence have less freedom to vary their car’s weight distribution. Heavier drivers are at a particular disadvantage, an issue addressed by the raising of the minimum car weight for the 2011 season."

With this in mind, we have produced a table showing the height and weight of each of the drivers involved in the 2011 season, below:

*These teams are not expected to run KERS during 2011

This data suggests that Force India may be the most affected by running KERS, as they have the largest drivers, and perhaps Sauber may benefit the most, as their drivers are the smallest. However, each team runs a different KERS design, with different levels of success and reliability. Williams have even discussed the possibility of using a flywheel based KERS system in place of a battery later in the season.

How big a part will KERS play in 2011? Only time will tell.

Friday, 25 February 2011

Williams Can Return To Glory

Williams Chairman Adam Parr has said that he believes that innovation, not money, will see his team reclaim their position at the front of the grid.

Parr explained that Brawn and Red Bull won their titles because they had the best, most innovative car, despite not having the funding of some of the other teams.

He admitted that his team do not have the capital of some of their rivals at their disposal, but claimed that this does not dishearten them.

Williams revealed their new livery on Thursday, which is reminiscent of their 'Rothmans' car, which took Damon Hill and Jacques Villeneuve to Championship glory in the mid '90s.

For more, see

Thursday, 24 February 2011

Williams Reveal New Livery

Williams have today unveiled their livery for the 2011 season.

The team had been running with an interim, dark blue, colour scheme for the pre-season tests.

To see the new paint job, visit

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

We're On Twitter!

Just to let you know that you can now follow us on Twitter

Search @F1Predict

Testing - Ferrari vs McLaren

So far this year, Ferrari have racked up approximately twice as many testing miles as McLaren have managed.

However, this is believed to be down to a difference in philosophy, with McLaren opting to do a large amount of their testing on their simulator, behind closed doors.

McLaren Managing Director Jonathan Neale told journalists that his team have a 'disciplined' approach to winter testing. has published a very interesting graph which shows the amount of testing miles undertaken by each team in the pre-season tests to date. To read the full article and view the graph, click HERE

2011's 'Most Interesting' Cars

Former Sauber Chief designer Sergio Ringland has chosen which cars he thinks are the 'most interesting' designs of 2011.

Ringland chose the McLaren MP4-26 as the most interesting car. Arguably, although this is the most aesthetically 'interesting' machine due to the dramatic 'U' shaped side-pods, some critics have suggested that the rest of the car is actually not as out of the ordinary as some of it's rivals.

The Lotus-Renault R31 was selected as second most interesting, which would probably appear in most fans top three, due in part to the new forward-facing exhaust and KERS cooling system the team have implemented.

Third on Ringland's list is the Williams FW33 which has a dramatic new rear end. The differential on the car is so low that the drive shafts have to operate at a very high angle. It is unclear yet how well this will work in a race situation, but it is certainly a different approach from a team Ringland refers to as 'conservative'.

For more on this story, visit

Tuesday, 22 February 2011

The Effect Of Tyre Wear

Several drivers and teams have expressed concerns with the effects of the wear-rate of the new Pirelli tyres, with Team Lotus driver Jarno Trulli stating "I think something is still missing in the development, because the tyres aren't balanced yet". (For this story in full, see

It is claimed that the tyres degrade much quicker than last year's Bridgestone tyres - and F1 correspondent James Allen can prove this! His website now shows graphs showing lap times from 2010 tests, and compares the times to the 2011 tests.
To view the graphs and read the full story, see

However, increased tyre wear may not be entirely negative, from a viewer's point of view at least, as BBC F1 commentator Martin Brundle - @MBrundleF1 - explained on his Twitter page:

"Drivers will bitch like crazy bt I'm really liking what I'm seeing out on track. They are really having to drive the cars, loads of mistakes"

"Mercedes has poor traction, McLaren looks shocking as if on cold tyres, Red Bull+Ferrari+Renault Lotus Lada+Williams all pounding round"

"Torro Rosso looks solid, Buemi is chasing the throttle as hard as anybody. Watching cars it's definitely going to be a wild+variable season"

Let us know what you think by commenting below!

Monday, 21 February 2011

Barcelona Testing - Final Day

Felipe Massa finished on top at the completion of the final Barcelona test (for a few weeks anyway), showing that Ferrari will surely be a force to contend with at the commencement of the new season.

Second quickest was Mark Webber but he was almost a second slower than the Brazilian.

Sebastien Buemi continued Toro Rosso's good form with the third quickest time of the day.

The teams are likely to return to Barcelona instead of Bahrain for the final pre-season test, before the season begins in Australia.

For more, see

Bahrain Grand Prix Off

It has been confirmed that the Bahrain Grand Prix has been canceled by the race organisers.

It is unclear yet whether the race can be held later in the year due to the busy schedule.

It is suggested that the final test session will be held at Barcelona, instead of the increasingly unstable Bahrain.

The first race of the season will now be held in Australia, as it has been in the past.

For more, see

Sunday, 20 February 2011

Testing Day 3 & Bahrain Update

With a possible sign that Mercedes troubles are not as bad as originally thought, Nico Rosberg set the fastest time in today's Barcelona test.

Vitaly Petrov was second fastest for Lotus-Renault, with Lewis Hamilton putting a McLaren in the top three for the first time in a while.

Also, Autosport are reporting that the decision as to whether the Bahrain Grand Prix will go ahead will be made tomorrow, so many people interested in both Formula One and International politics will be waiting on this decision with great interest.

For more, see

Bahrain Update

Bernie Ecclestone has confirmed that he will leave the decision of whether the Bahrain Grand Prix goes ahead to the Nation's Crown-Prince.

Former Formula One driver Alex Wurz said on his Twitter page:
@alex_wurz - "bahrain turns in2 contractual matter! 1st party to cancel race would loose cash, so every1 waits 4 'force majeure' i guess"

It has however been reported that I'd the race does go ahead, at least one team would boycott the event.

For more, see

Testing Day 2 & News

Day two of Barcelona testing saw a similar result to the previous test, with Vettel once again the fastest.

Alguersuari was second fastest, with Alonso third, however they were within a second of the reigning World Champion, unlike Friday's times.

In other news, Michael Schumacher has said that he believes his Mercedes team can win a race, but he doubts they have enough for the Championship.

Legendary Formula One star Nikki Lauda has voiced his concerns regarding the Bahrain Grand Prix, saying that democracy should come before sport.

For more, see and

Saturday, 19 February 2011

Barcelona Test

The first day of the Barcelona test took place yesterday, and Red Bull seem to be re-asserting their dominance.

Sebastian Vettel's best time was over 1.1 seconds quicker than second place Alonso's, even though Sebastian has done far less testing laps.

Toro Rosso's Jaime Alguersuari was third quickest.

For more, see

Friday, 18 February 2011

Ecclestone Presses Ahead

Bernie Ecclestone has caused conyroversy by trying to press ahead with the Bahrain tests and Grand Prix, despite the political unrest in the Nation.

Comedy legend Stephen Fry - @stephenfry - "Can't quite believe that with the ruthless treatment of Bahrain's protesters Ecclestone is talking about Grand Prix prospects there #Bahrain"

HRH The (fictional) Queen of England - @Queen_UK - "Get on the phone to your Queen, Bernie Ecclestone. #idiot"

Let us know your views by using the Comments field below!

Thursday, 17 February 2011

More Bahrain Problems

This weekend's GP2 race which was due to be held in Bahrain has been cancelled by the events organisers, as the political situation in the Country continues to deteriorate.

The first week in March is due to see the Formula One teams arrive for the final pre-season test, prior to the first race of the season at the same track.

F1 Chief Bernie Ecclestone has confirmed that he will make a decision next week regarding whether the race will go-ahead as planned.

If the race does not go ahead in Bahrain, it is unlikely to be replaced. Therefore, Australia will likely hold the first Grand Prix of the new season.

Many motor racing personalities have used their Twitter accounts to give their views on what is going on:

Team Lotus Chief Technical Officer Mike Gascoyne - @MikeGascoyne - "GP2 race has been cancelled in Bahrain. Big uncertainty about testing there next week. Hope our GP2 guys get home safely"

BBC F1 Commentator Martin Brundle - @MBrundleF1 - "Bahrain GP2 now cancelled by their motorsport federation. No point second guessing F1GP in such volatile circumstances but doesn't look good"

"When Spa was cancelled for track issues in 1985 they ran it later in the year, but F1 schedule, comerciality (sic), + TV so much more complex now"

"I've been to Bahrain 9 times, always found it very calm and pleasant place to be. One of my favourite GPs so shocked to see the news reports"

BBC F1 Presenter Jake Humphrey - @jakehumphreyf1 - "It seems the situation is worsening and may have degenerate (sic) further. To be honest when things are this serious sport takes second place"

For more, see and

Lewis' Brother To Begin Motor Racing Career

Lewis Hamilton's brother Nick has confirmed that he will participate in the Clio Cup competition during the 2011 season.

He used his Twitter page to tell his followers:
"Confirmed for Clio Cup for this year, excited for my first season of racing, should be good :)"

Follow @nicolashamilton on for more updates

Wednesday, 16 February 2011

Hall of Fame

Four new motor racing icons were inducted into the Motorsport Hall of Fame last night.

Sir Jack Brabham, Sir Frank Williams, Jody Scheckter and Dario Franchitti were celebrated at a special event attended by many famous faces.

For more see

Heidfeld Confirmed

As expected, "Quick Nick" Heidfeld has been confirmed as Robert Kubica's replacement at Lotus-Renault for the 2011 season.

For more, see

Mark Webber Provides Kubica Update

Red Bull's Mark Webber used his Twitter page to tell his followers of Robert Kubica's road to recovery:

"Yes I visited Robert yesterday and had a great chat about loads of stuff,he is receiving great care too."

For more, follow @AussieGrit on

Bernie Expresses Bahrain Fears

F1 Chief Bernie Ecclestone had expressed concerns over the safety of the first race of the 2011 season.

There is growing political unrest in the region, and the Grand Prix has been mentioned by protesters as a potential global platform on which to make their point known.

Ecclestone confirmed it was too early to confirm whether the race could be called off, but the final pre-season tests are due to be held there early next month.

The situation will be monitored closely before a decision is made.

For more, see

Tuesday, 15 February 2011

What's On Tonight

The Motor Sport Hall of Fame ceremony is taking place tonight, with many famous names from the past and present in attendance.

Lewis Hamilton won't be there, however, as he is taking his brother to the Brit Awards!

Keep visiting for more F1 news and stories!

Good News For Barrichello

Williams driver Rubens Barrichello revealed via his Twitter page that he received some good news:
"guess from who I received a call today??Robert Kubica...tks GOD he is ok ,talking normally...I was so happy..."

Follow Rubens Barrichello via @rubarrichello

Sunday, 13 February 2011

Final Jerez Times

As the final day of testing at Jerez came to an end, there was a surprising name at the top of the time sheets.

The Williams of Rubens Barrichello set the fastest time of the day, to the surprise of many in the paddock, as the team had only had limited runs, with Pastor Maldonado suffing an accident earlier in the week.

Second in the unofficial timing, was the Sauber of Kamui Kobayashi, with Alonso third and Sebastien Buemi recording the fourth fastest time of the day for Toro Rosso.

For more detail, see

Saturday, 12 February 2011

Symonds To Make F1 Return

Former Renault engineer Pat Symonds announces Formula One return.

Symonds was banned following the race fixing controversy at the 2008 Singapore Grand Prix, and is not allowed to work full-time for a team until 2013.

However, he is able to work on a consultancy basis, which he will do with the Virgin Racing team.

For more, see

Heidfeld Stakes Claim To Lotus-Renault Seat

If Nick Heidfeld needed to proove he had the ability to replace the injured Robert Kubica for Lotus-Renault, then his performance today will certainly go someway towards that.

Heidfeld set the fastest lap in the third test at Jerez today, heading Fernando Alonso by just over a tenth of a second.

Unofficial timing puts Schumacher in third, Hamilton fourth, Kobayashi fifth and Vettel sixth, but Schumacher is already looking towards future updates to improve the Mercedes' pace and has expressed concerns that the team still need to get more testing laps under their belt.

Promisingly for Team Lotus, Heikki Kovalainen's best lap was only 0.7 seconds off Schumacher's pace, which suggests some major steps forward have been acheived by the team.

For more, see

Testing Updates

Just to give you a brief update of what had been happening at Jerez over the last few days:

Thursday, Felipe Massa was fastest for Ferrari with claims that Mercedes were struggling.

Friday, lots of incidents, including an accident for Perez in the Sauber, and several spins for Petrov in the Lotus-Renault.
Schumacher finished fastest, however there were rumours that his Mercedes was running on low fuel!

For more see

Ferrari Settle Lawsuit

Ferrari have been able to bring their court case with Ford to a swift conclusion by renaming their car "F150th Italia".

For more, see

Ford Sue Ferrari

Ford have decided to take legal action against Ferrari over the name they have given their new Formula One car.

The Italian marque's F150 racer has been named in reference to 150 years of the unity of Italy, but it is unfortunately also the name of Ford's best selling pick-up truck.

Ford claim they tried to settle this previously, but Ferrari have not responded to their comments.

For more, see

Thursday, 10 February 2011

Buy A Stake In A Formula One Team

In a move supported by F1 overseer Bernie Ecclestone, Williams have become the first team to float on the stock market.

The shares are around 20-25 Euros each, which values the team at approximately £250m.

For more, see

Wednesday, 9 February 2011

Renault Announce New Driver

Lotus -Renault have confirmed that Nick Heidfeld will test for the team in Jerez next week in the place of the injured Robert Kubica.

Whether this will lead to a race seat is yet to be seen.

For more, see

Tuesday, 8 February 2011

Video From Kubica Rally

This is a video which has been uploaded to YouTube, on-board with the car behind Kubica.

It gives a good indication of the narrowness and technicality of the track the drivers were competing on.

It's good to see the driver and co-driver of the car the video is taken from are quick to offer assistance.

Kubica's Replacement

Lotus-Renault boss Eric Boullier has named three drivers the team are considering as replacements for the injured Robert Kubica.

The shortlist consists of Lotus-Renault reserve driver Bruno Senna, Nick Heidfeld, who replaced Pedro de la Rosa at the end of last season for Sauber, and finally Vitantonio Liuzzi, who lost his 2011 Force India drive to new boy Paul di Resta.

The names of Pirelli's test driver Pedro de la Rosa, and Force India's reserve driver Nico Hulkenberg have also been suggested as potential replacements, but Boullier's new statement suggests that these two have been ruled out of the running.

For more see

Final Unveilings

Both Force India and Hispania revealed their 2011 cars today.

The Force India is a very smart looking car which the team hope can provide them with fifth place this season.

The HRT looks rather different from the last model, though this is partly due to a new colour scheme!

For images of the new cars, see

In particular, check out how low the rear wing is on the Force India, very different from the last year or two!

Monday, 7 February 2011

Virgin Unveil New Car

The Marussia Virgin team launched their 2011 car at BBC Television Center in London today.

Like the Team Lotus car, out features a very similar livery to last year, but looks more like a modern formula one car than its predecessor.

Only Force India and Hispania are yet to unveil their new designs.

For images from the Virgin launch, visit

Kubica - Monday's Update

Further reports are reporting good news with regards to the injured Robert Kubica. He will, however require further surgery, as yesterday's seven hour operation was focussed on the main trauma - the badly injured right hand.

Lotus-Renault GP boss Eric Boullier, and Kubica's team-mate Vitaly Petrov are due to visit their colleague today.

Boullier is very optimistic, and has even suggested the Pole may only be out for a few months, rather than the year suggested by surgeons.

Kubica's friend, Ferrari's Fernando Alonso, has also visited the hospital, but it is not clear whether he was able to speak to Kubica.

For more, see

Sunday, 6 February 2011

Chandhok To Drive New Lotus

Karun Chandhok's chance of becoming Team Lotus test driver became a bit more likely today, as it was confirmed that the Indian driver will drive their new car in the next official test session in Jerez.

It is believed that this will lead to him signing as the team's test driver for the 2011 season.

Honour For Fernandes

Team Lotus boss Tony Fernandes has been awarded a CBE for 'services to promote commercial and educational links' between the UK and Malaysia.

As well as running Team Lotus, Fernandes is also responsible for the airline AirAsia, and Tune Group.


Kubica - Another Update

It is being reported that Robert Kubica spent seven hours in surgery following his accident on Sunday morning.

The surgery is believed to have been succesful, however it may take up to a week before doctors will be sure if Kubica's 'partially severed' hand has been saved.

Doctors have also said that even if the surgery has gone according to plan, it may take up to a year before he can drive a Formula One car again.

Kubica's co-driver in the rally car, Jakub Gerber, has explained that he did not know why they crashed.

Despite some critics arguing that it was irresponsible and ill-advised for Kubica to race in a rally between tests, Lotus-Renault team boss Eric Boullier, has defended the decision to let the Pole participate. "We've let him do it because rallying is what he loves to do. Rallying is vital for Robert and for his sanity" explained Boullier.

For more on this story, visit

Kubica - Further Update

A correction to the previous post.
It is in fact understood to be Kubica's right arm and leg which were injured in the accident, despite him driving a left-hand drive Skoda.

Reports at this stage are still unclear, however it has been reported that part of the Armco entered the cockpit, hence the extent of the damage.

Surgeons are currently operating on the 26 year-old, and although his condition is not thought life-threatening, there is a great deal of concern surrounding his injured hand.

An official statement is expected shortly from

Kubica Update

It is being reported that Robert Kubica suffered fractures to his left arm and leg in his rally accident in Italy.

His co-driver is not believed to have been injured.

Kubica is unlikely to start the season, which begins in mid-March, so new third driver Bruno Senna may take to the grid in Bahrain, alongside Vitaly Petrov.

For more, see

Kubica Injured

Lotus-Renault driver Robert Kubica has suffered 'serious injuries' in a rally car accident.

The Pole, who was quickest in testing in Valencia last week, was air-lifted to hospital after hitting a wall.

For more information, see

Saturday, 5 February 2011

New McLaren

Yesterday saw the new McLaren unveiled to the World, and it has to be said that it is almost certainly the most innovative design of a car that we've seen in a while.

Most notably, the car features 'L' shaped side-pods which McLaren claim will assist with air-flow to the rear wing, which will improve downforce.

Check out pictures at

Friday, 4 February 2011

Chandhok To Sign For Team Lotus?

Karun Chandhok, the former Hispania driver, is likely to sign for Team Lotus in the near future.

Team Lotus are currently without a test driver after parting ways with Fairuz Fauzy, and Chandhok, who spent time during testing at Valencia chatting to Team Lotus owner Tony Fernandes and chief mechanic Mike Gascoigne, is favourite to fill the role.

Interestingly, Chandhok's good friend and former Hispania teammate Bruno Senna has this week been confirmed as test driver for Lotus-Renault GP.

Keep checking for more F1 news!

Thursday, 3 February 2011

Testing - Day Three

As Thursday's test session in Valencia came to a close, it was Lotus-Renault's Robert Kubica who stole the headlines.

The Pole acheived an unofficial time of just over 1 minute 13, which was the fastest lap of anyone over the three testing days.

The next quickest 2011 cars were Mark Webber for Red Bull, Felipe Massa for Ferrari, Pastor Maldonado for Williams and Sergio Perez for Sauber. However, the 2010 cars of Adrian Sutil's Force India, Jenson Button's McLaren and Timo Glock's Virgin filtered inbetween.

Testing will commence again later in the month at Jerez, except for Team Lotus who will continue testing tomorrow after missing Tuesday's session.

For more information, see

Wednesday, 2 February 2011

More Testing

The second test session of the year took place today.

On the whole, the (unofficial) positions were similar to yesterday, however, Fernando Alonso did manage to record two laps quicker than the best Sebastien Vettel could offer.

Heikki Kovalainen took the new Team Lotus car to the track for their first run. However, the day was hampered with mechanical problems, and the Finn couldn't get within seven seconds of the Ferrari.

For a run down of times, see

Forward Thinking

One of the biggest talking points following the unveiling of the new cars, is Lotus-Renault GP's innovative new exhaust system.

The tail-pipes face forward, which cleverly affects the air-flow, increasing downforce.

Rumour has it that the new McLaren, due to be launched on Friday, may feature a similar design.

For more, see

Tuesday, 1 February 2011

Williams Too!

Somehow we seem to have failed to mention the rather special looking Williams which was uncovered today!

It looks very low and impressive in the temporary dark blue colour scheme.

Rumour has it that the race livery will be quite retro!

For pictures, visit

Testing Begins

Testing starts today in Valencia.

For a live news feed, visit

More New Cars!

Today saw the wraps come off three new cars.

Mercedes GP with their heavily amended machine.
Red Bull, with their very similar looking car (if it aint broke . . .)
And Torro Roso with a good looking, sleek motor.

To see pictures of the unveilings, see