Double points to be awarded in 2014 F1 finale

Fiasco Sports, Formula 1

The FIA today have announced that double points will be received in a bid to bring excitement to the final race of the Formula 1 Drivers’ and Constructors’ Championships. 

Formula 1 to battle it out right to the final round. Photo: Joe Armao/Sydney Morning Herald

Formula 1 to battle it out right to the final round. Photo: Joe Armao/Sydney Morning Herald

The final round of the FIA Formula 1 calendar will see double points awarded for the 2014 season.

This move is one of many made recently by the Formula 1 Commission and Strategy Groups this week.

The change was made to increase the fight of the Formula 1 title going into the final round of 2014, as current Formula 1 world champion Sebastian Vettel won this years title with few rounds to spare.

This change will also apply to not only the Formula 1 Drivers’ Championship, but also the Contructors’ Championship.

If this system was implement over the last six years, two of the final results of the Drivers’ championships would have been different, Felipe Massa would have pipped Lewis Hamilton in 2008 and Fernando Alonso would have won Vettel’s world championship last year.

Other changes for the 2014 FIA Formula 1 season include drivers’ being able to choose their numbers, rather than run the number the constructor finished the previous year, with the drivers’ championship order to be used to resolve any issues over number allocation.

A budget cap for 2015 is also currently being discussed by the Commission and Strategy Group to keep the costs fair for each team.

Written by Loren Hazelwood. @LorenHazelwood

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20 years since Ayrton Senna’s last Australian F1 victory

Fiasco Sports, Formula 1

This week marks 20 years since Ayrton Senna took his final race win at the Australian Grand Prix in Adelaide, 1993.

Ayrton Senna on the pdium with Alain Prost in 1993 at Adelaide. Source: Adelaide Now

Ayrton Senna on the podium with Alain Prost in 1993 at Adelaide. Source: Adelaide Now

Two decades ago Ayrton Senna sprayed the champagne taking his 41st Formula 1 Grand Prix victory on the streets of Adelaide, which was sadly his last.

It was that tragic day, 1 May 1994, Senna’s last drive, his Rothmans Williams Renault speared off at the Tamburello corner at the San Marino circuit, a crash that Senna unfortunately could not walk away from.

The 34 year old Brazilian suffered severe head trauma, succumbing to his injuries.

Debate still centres the cause of the crash that took the three time world champions life.

Source: Sportsphoto/Allstar

Source: Sportsphoto/Allstar

Senna will always be remembered by his amazing Formula 1 racing accomplishments.

Senna held many Formula 1 records which have been beaten in recent times, one that will stand the test of time is Senna’s record of ‘Highest percentage of front row starts in a season’ 100% in 1989.

Although Senna shares this amazing record with Alain Prost and Damon Hill, the record is perfection, what Senna strived for.

Source: Getty Images

Source: Getty Images

The Senna V Prost rivalry, will never be forgotten. Prost was seen by the public as Senna’s worst enemy, but is now known for working on The Ayrton Senna foundation, which was formed by Viviane Senna, sister to Ayrton.

Senna will always be remembered for his brave overtaking manoeuvres and aggression on the track, while attaining an impressive Formula 1 resume that made Formula 1 fans around the world fall in love with him.

Senna defending Nigel Mansell to win the Monaco Grand Prix. Source: Daily Mail

Senna defending Nigel Mansell to win the Monaco Grand Prix. Source: Daily Mail

Senna was adored in Brazil and the nation went into mourning long after his passing.

Senna is one of the greatest, one can not begin to imagine how the records would look if tragedy did not unfold on that dark San Marino weekend when the Formula 1 world also lost Roland Ratzenberger, that one Sunday that Senna did not want to race.

Written by Loren Hazelwood. @LorenHazelwood 

Source: Getty Images

Source: Getty Images

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What A Bloody Rush

Film and TV, Formula 1, Formula 3 Australian Drivers Championship, Spultured


Ladies and Gentleman, fasten your seatbelts because Rush is by far one of the most inspiring yet adrenalin pumping movies you could ever watch. Whether you’re a racing fanatic or know nothing about those things that move on four wheels, this movie is a winner.

Directed by Academy Award Winner Ron Howard and written by Peter Morgan, Rush is based on the true story of Niki Lauder and James Hunt’s rivalry in Formula 1 back in the late 70’s, entering a world that most Formula 1 fans would have never discovered.

The movie is rather long, but definitely worth the time. It starts off with Lauder and Hunt’s rivalry back in the Formula 3 days, showing straight from the start how different the two characters were and how they progressed to the pinnacle of open wheel racing leading in two different directions.

If you aren’t familiar with the rivalry between these two amazing drivers and the 1976 Formula 1 season, I’d strongly suggest you Google it before watching the movie. The way Howard conducts the life of these two drivers is impeccable, with Australian actor Chris Hemsworth (James Hunt) and Daniel Brühl (Niki Lauder) turning in outstanding performances as these Formula 1 champions.

This movie shows the audience just how dedicated you have to be to race in Formula 1, especially when it’s life or death. Rush will definitely keep you on the edge throughout, making you wonder just how those two drivers survived racing all those years ago.

If you loved Senna and World’s Fastest Indian, I’d strongly suggest you go see this when it hits cinemas (October 3). Rush follows a similar storyline to the World’s Fastest Indian, yet draws you in on the true story just like Senna. Motorsport fan or not, this movie is a must see.

Keep your eyes peeled and go feel the rush – everyone’s driven by something.

A Tribute to Retiring Webber

Formula 1, Spultured


Australian Formula 1 driver Mark Webber last night ended all of the rumours circulating the pit paddock and announced he will be moving from the Infiniti Red Bull Racing team to be apart of Porsche’s World Endurance Championship sportscar program.

We can’t ignore the fact that Webber and his young German teammate Sebastian Vettel did not get along like a house on fire, but this was not a considering factor of why the Australian decided to leave the sport.

The 36-year-old believed it was perfect timing to join Porsche’s program, as he believes it is a sensational challenge and the perfect timing for his future work.

With Webber announcing this ground-shaking news, I thought it was time that I’d look at the highlights of the Aussie’s racing career and how it all started.

It all began in 1991, when Mark started racing sprint go-karts around Australia competing against some great names in Australian motorsport. It was only a few years later in 1994 when Webber started racing in open-wheelers.

Formula Ford in Australia in the mid-nineties was the lead way for young Australian drivers who wanted to further their motor racing career.

Mark Webber in his Formula Ford

Mark Webber in his Formula Ford

Mark Webber then struggled with funds for his racing, going over to the UK with virtually no money. Webber raced at the prestigious Formula Ford Festival in 1995 at the Brands Hatch circuit, finishing an astonishing third place on debut.

The 19-year-old at the time was then offered a factory drive with Van Diemen to compete in the European and British Formula Ford championships. Webber went on to win the 1996 British Formula Ford festival that year, which in many cases was known to be a gateway for Formula 1.

After competing in Formula Ford for three years, Webber graduated to Formula 3000 with Alan Docking Racing for the 1997 championship in Europe. Without having a stronger financial backing like Webber and his team had in the Formula Ford season, Webber and the team nearly had to pull out of racing the category halfway through. Fortunately an Australian personal investor came on board and financially helped Webber out.

Webber was approached at the end of his Formula 3 campaign by Mercedes-AMG to compete in a sports car race. He traveled all around the world racing at Japan, Europe and the United States, but his sports car career came to an early end after an aerodynamic fault, which caused Webber to go airborne and flip twice in practice for the 1999 24 Hours of Le Mans race. Webber escaped without injury, but this ended the Mercedes campaign and saw Webber return to open-wheel racing.

Mark Webber's aerodynamic failure at Le Mans

Mark Webber’s aerodynamic failure at Le Mans

Webber made his first steps in Formula 1 in 1999, testing for Arrows F1 team. It wasn’t until 2002 when Mark made his debut racing in Formula 1, where he was teamed up with Minardi Asiatech. Webber impressed on his debut, racing at his home Australian Grand Prix. He qualified 18th for the race, but managed to climb his way through the field to grab fifth place, claiming the first ever points for the Minardi Asiatech team.

2009 marked an important year when Webber was racing for Red Bull that Webber qualified on pole for the first time in Formula 1 at the Nüburgring. This was the first time an Australian driver had claimed pole position since Alan Jones back in 1980. He went on to achieve his first Formula 1 victory despite receiving a drive through penalty early in the race for causing an avoidable collision at the start. Webber went on to dominate the race and win ahead of his teammate Vettel, heading a Red Bull 1–2.

Mark Webber's debut in Formula 1 finishing in fifth

Mark Webber’s debut in Formula 1 finishing in fifth

After the German Grand Prix, Webber was ready to take charge in the championship campaign for 2010, having great success in the season taking victories at the Spanish, Monaco and Hungarian Grand Prix’s. Webber unfortunately lost the championship battle to his younger teammate Sebastian Vettel, but finished in third place.

As the tension grew between Vettel and Webber at Red Bull, Webber was determined to go better in 2011. The Australian had to wait all year to claim victory at the Brazilian Grand Prix, but remained consistent throughout the year to claim third place in the driver’s championship.

After coming so close the previous year’s before for the championship title, Webber in 2012 won the British and Monaco Grand Prix’s, which he claims to this day are his sweetest victories.

Webber this year haven’t yet claimed a race victory and is currently sixth in the championship, so it was very interesting to find out that he announced the end of his Formula 1 campaign. He has come so close, yet for the 36-year-old other plans have come in the way and the Aussie believes Porsches is the way to go.

Mark Webber celebrating at Monaco in 2012

Mark Webber celebrating at Monaco in 2012

Despite having a huge crash at Le Man’s many years ago in his AMG-Mercedes, Webber believes he can overcome his fear of racing at Le Mans and give it a red hot go.

All the best to Webber and his sports car career, it will be sad to see an Australian leave the sport who has brought much joy to the Formula 1 paddock and will be sadly missed.

Let’s see if our young Aussie driver at Toro Rosso Daniel Ricciardo can take his seat at Red Bull Racing!

All F1 Drivers Can Drive

Formula 1, Spultured

Published on:

Monaco F1 Grand Prix - Race

A few weeks ago, I was watching the Formula 1 qualifying with another dedicated fan and he turns to me and says, “well, you do know that not all of the Formula 1 drivers can drive … it’s about how much money they’ve got”.

Now, I personally know how expensive motor racing is and that a lot of it has to do with sponsorship and “who” you know. But, this does not mean that the drivers in the current championship can’t steer an F1 car.

So, to back up my statement and prove my learned friend wrong, I conducted a little background research on the current Formula 1 drivers in an effort to prove to him that most, if not all, the drivers have actually achieved a massive amount in their motor racing careers.

For example, current world champion Sebastian Vettel has won numerous go-karting world titles, won the Formula BMW championship and competed with current F1 drivers in the European Formula 3 series. These racers have always raced together, proving that development categories around the world are a vital part towards making it to the top. But it’s not all about the guys at the front of the grid.

The driver’s who are not gaining points in the championship at the moment are also really experienced racers. For example, Esteban Gutierrez, a newcomer to Formula 1, brings a huge amount of experience to Sauber. The Mexican has raced all over the world, having already claimed a Formula BMW European title and finishing third in the GP3 series last year (which he won in 2010). Although Gutierrez is yet to make a podium finish in the big league, this can be put down, at least in part, to the team he is steering for.

Unfortunately not all teams in Formula 1 have the same amount of money, but these drivers are all clearly good enough to win once the richer teams give them a chance.

Just because they are running at the back of the field, it does not mean they are “slow” or “can’t drive”. They are there largely due to their team not being able to fork out for the best gear to make faster Formula 1 cars.

So, for any of you non-believers that think Formula 1 is all about drivers who can’t drive and have heaps of money – think again. The skills all drivers acquire can’t be bought with a couple of million of dollars, it’s so much more than just the money. These guys can drive!