Formula One: VIDEO – Canadian Grand Prix Top Tips

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The Canadian Grand Prix, the 7th round of the 2016 Formula One World Championship, has all the makings of a potential classic. With mixed weather conditions forecast, a resurgent Lewis Hamilton, an angry Daniel Ricciardo, and power unit upgrades for most teams, this weekend’s racing is definitely worth getting excited about.

I’ve tried something a little (cringe-worthy) different for this weekend’ preview. Please let me know what you think in the comments section on here or You Tube. Don’t forget if you do think any of what I’m saying makes sense, head to William Hill for some of the best odds available on Formula One.

Lewis Hamilton

In earlier pre-race tips I’ve tried to avoid the obvious bet, but this weekend barring mechanical failure Lewis Hamilton looks very likely to be in a strong position to seal his 45th win. The odds being offered are not great for the customer, but at 6/5 you stand to make a return of 2.2 for every 1 (of which ever currency you use) you put down. Lewis would be a ‘safe’ bet for the weekend.

In addition to the high likely hood of a win, Lewis has to be a strong contender for the triple around Montreal. Setting Pole, plus taking fastest lap and the win. Odds of 11/2 are being offered on this. Lewis has a special relationship with the Canadian GP circuit. He took his first win in 2007 there and seems to be able to find that extra bit of performance when he needs it.

Weather

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Forecast predict that the Canadian Grand Prix is likely to be impacted by rain, an increasingly common feature of previews to Grand Prix weekends! Should rain hit the circuit, which at the moment it is forecast to do for Sunday only, focus, as in Monaco, should shift to the experienced drivers in the mid field. Again I would look toward Force India with odds of a win for Nico Hulkenberg being offered at 100/1 and Sergio Perez at 150/1. Whilst a win is unlikely, you can take an each way split on the bet and get 1/5 odds for a podium finish.

Red Bull Racing

I predict a tense weekend for the Red Bull duo. Daniel Ricciardo feels he’s been ‘screwed out’ of two race wins by the team. Max Verstappen had a shocker of a weekend in Monaco any other driver would be worried for their seat after such a performance. With both drivers receiving the upgraded Renault Power Unit they should be in the fight, I predict real hero – zero action from both the drivers. Look at a win or first retirement for either.

Daniel Ricciardo Win – 7/1 | first to retire – 25/1

Max Verstappen Win 12/1 | first to retire 22/1

Mclaren 

I have a feeling Mclaren could be in for a very strong weekend. Honda are bringing upgrades to the Power Unit, both Alonso and Button thrive in mixed conditions, the team are rebuilding in confidence. If the rain comes on Sunday, I would take a look at a long shot Each way bet on the drivers making the top step. Alonso is currently offered at 200/1 and Button 250/1.

It is a longshot, but who can forget Jenson’s incredible 2011 win. He knows how to win in Canada.

Strategy

Strategy options for the Canadian Grand Prix look likely to be something of a non starter. The Ultra soft Pirelli tyre is lasting much longer than many anticipated. the longevity of the tyre makes a one stop strategy pretty much inevitable for all teams. One possibility to look out for could be opportunities arising from an early safety car which could see drivers switch to the Soft (Yellow) compound tyre with a view of completing the entire race distance on a single set of tyres.

History suggests a safety car around Montreal is highly likely. As such the odds available are 1/3.

Power Units

Renault, Ferrari, and Honda, are catching Mercedes… … Quickly. With upgrades from all manufacturers expected over the Canadian Grand Prix, the teams most likely to shuffle back are the customers. Expect the performance gap between ‘Works’ and ‘Customer’ teams to start to increase as the season progresses.

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Formula One: Doping in Motorsport

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The IAAF, International Association of Athletics Federation, has come under intense scrutiny in recent months for the way in which it chooses to respond to a growing number of reports of failed doping tests for competitive athletes.

Motorsport until now has seen very few incidents in which competitors have been found to have fallen foul of the rulebook. It was with interest then to discover in the FIA AUTO publication that of doping tests carried out amongst competitors in 2014, 3.6% delivered a positive result. The article does not detail the total number of tests carried out, or the series in which the tests took place, but 3.6% is an alarmingly high number.

The FIA is a signatory to the World Anti-Doping Code, and so is bound by the List of Prohibited Substances and Methods (found here) this is the same code to which the IAAF is a signatory.

The FIA are tackling the issue head with the introduction of the ‘Race True – Anti Doping Educations Programme’ led by Sandra Silveira-Camargo, FIA head of Medical Affairs. The first session of this sort took place at the Belgian round of the World Endurance Championship. Should the training prove successful it will be repeated through F1, WRC, WRX, WTCC, F3, and Formula E.

Whilst no details of what constituents a positive result in a doping test have been revealed, nor the names of any participants involved. The 2014 results show that the issue of doping in motorsport does exist and it can not be ignored.

The FIA Auto Magazine from which this information was sourced can be found here

 

Formula One: Verstappen thrills fans in Zandvoort

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Max Verstappen took to the wheel of an 2016 livered RB8 earlier today in a demonstration run around the Dutchman’s home circuit of Zandvoort.

The demonstration forms part of the 2 day #racedagen event at the circuit which also includes runs in modified 2 seater F1 machinary, with which Jos Verstappen took his son out for a spin!

Sell out crowds have been seen at the event, demonstrating the huge  level of interest Max Verstappen has reignited in Formula One and more specifically his success.

Check out this video from Max at the event.

Click here to visit the Zandvoort home page for more on #racedagen

Formula One: Mercedes Monaco Madness

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The Merecedes AMG Petronas Magazine Show ‘The Silver Arrows’ reflects on the teams Monaco Grand Prix weekend, with an interview from Toto Wolff, Rachael Laenen, team hospitality and events manager, and Lewis Hamilton’s number one mechanic Nathan Divey.

Interestingly we hear Toto speak of his relief to have bought an end to the downward spiral of performance Lewis Hamilton had been suffering and how the team are increasingly seeing Red Bull Racing as the main challenger this season.

Rachael Laenen discusses the challenges of a Monaco weekend in which the team entertain more than 300 guests (including Justin Bieber) across 4 locations in an area with poor phone reception and even worse wifi. It was a surprise to hear the team resort to traditional radio communication over the weekend, surely partners Tata Communications and Qualcomm could have put together a more innovative solution!

Formula One: Montréal set to challenge power unit reliability

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The seventh round of the 2016 Formula One World Championship looks set to be most challenging circuit on power units of the season to date. The long straights demand maximum power for just over 60% of the lap. The longest straight on the circuit is the Droit du Casino at 1,064m and top speed will be in excess of 330kph, the highest speed seen this year so far.

There aren’t enough braking points on the circuit to allow the K to recover the full FIA allowable amount. This, along with the high fuel consumption at this track, makes for a
delicate balancing act during the race to stay within the 100kgpermitted fuel load, average fuel usage per lap is 1.48Kg, with the race taking place over 70 laps usage at this rate would exceed the permitted fuel limit by more almost 4KG. Drivers will be hoping for an early safety car period to avoid finishing the race in heavy fuel saving modes.
Renault will complete the roll out of the B-Spec power unit with both Renault Sport’s Jolyon Palmer and Red Bull Racing’s Max Verstappen having access to the unit in race conditions for the first time.
Speaking on the power unit Renault Sport’s Nick Chester commented:

 

“It’s a good step forward and we have it in both cars in Montréal. In Monaco we were able to benefit primarily from the improved driveability whereas Montréal is more a power track thanks to its straights following slow corners. This means we should really see the power unit stretch its legs.”

 

The nature of the circuit will put this upgraded unit under significant pressure, reliability will be a watch out over the weekend.
It is expected Honda and Ferrari will also introduce Power Unit upgrades over the Canadian Grand Prix weekend. With Mercedes coming to end of the cycle of it’s current unit in effect out of sequence to the other teams, expect the power output of teams to be a little close than normal over the weekend. Whilst this is unlikely to threaten the works Mercedes team, customers teams may fall further off the pace than otherwise expected.

 

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Formula One: Palmer “I did also offer to get the spanners out”

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Renault Sport F1’s Jolyon Palmer reflects on his challenging Monaco Grand Prix, the aftermath of the weekend, and looks ahead to Montréal.

What went wrong for you in the Monaco Grand Prix?

 

We went over the data and it looks like it was the lower grip as I crossed the white lines of the zebra crossing which meant my wheels span as I pushed to accelerate. The car was pitched sideways and I collected the barriers. It was just the wrong place

at the wrong time. I had a bit of bruising on my feet so it was just my ego and the car that had to suffer.
I have been in Enstone since Monaco, to get some time in the Sim, but I did also offer to get the spanners out to help build the new chassis… I’m very grateful for all the hard work that goes in at the track and back in Enstone and Viry and I did more than my fair share of damage to the car in Monaco.
Away from the track, Monaco is such a big week and you really feel it afterwards. On Monday night I slept a straight 14 hours to recover; I was exhausted! It’s a really cool weekend, but it’s just so busy! You start a day early then there’s no track running on Friday
but all kinds of exciting media initiatives including showcasing the R.S.16 Clio which was cool
What are your thoughts heading to Montréal?
I was there last year and I realised what a really cool city it is. It’s also one which genuinly embraces Formula 1 coming to town so can’t wait to return. The track itself looks great with good overtaking opportunities. There has been good racing there in the past so it’s exciting to be headed for my first race there.
I will get the B spec power unit for the first time. It looked like it made a good difference in Monaco and Canada is a more power-hungry circuit so if it was a positive step in Monaco it should certainly help our cause in Montréal.
The new engine mapping certainly looks to have been beneficial and you need good traction in out of the lower speed corners in Canada. It’s got more power too so everything is good in that regard!
We should be a good chunk more competitive. We’ll do everything we can to maximise the car around the track and we’ll be pushing all the way as usual!

Formula One: Mercedes free practice cameras explained

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Throughout the 2016 season the Mercedes AMG Petronas W07 of Lewis Hamilton & Nico Rosberg has sported additional camera mountings situated either side of the airbox above the drivers head. These additional units are seen only in Friday free practice sessions and test sessions, broadcast world feed does not include imagery from these locations leading many to ask what exactly are these units?

In this film produced with team partner Qualcomm, Paddy Lowe, Executive Director Technical, with support from Evan Short, trackside team leader, explain the units and how they give the team more data than ever before.

Success in modern day Formula One sees teams strive to optimise every aspect of the sport, this includes optimisation of the collection, downloading and analysis of data. The amount of data a team is capable of collecting a digesting a nothing short of staggering

Including rotary switches, buttons and paddles, there are approximately 45 individual controls on a modern Formula One steering wheel – and by far the most frequently used are the gear change paddles. At Monaco, the average number of gear changes per lap is around 50 – which equates to nearly 4,000 changes over a 78-lap race distance. When one calculates the number of inputs a driver is likely to have to make, the total during a qualifying lap alone is impressive. 130 significant changes of steering direction, 50 gear changes and up to 20 further inputs for DRS / ERS deployment and any other adjustments.That gives the driver a predicted workload of over 200 different inputs per lap

On track, the team manages 200 physical sensors on the car, used to log 1,000 channels of data, 100 times per second – measuring variables from hydraulic pressures to drive train temperatures and, of course, the hundreds of driver inputs undertaken each lap. 17,000 further parameters are recorded in ‘slow row’ (recording whenever there is space in the logger, i.e. every couple of seconds) with a total logging rate of 440kBps in the on-car and 250kBps in telemetry broadcast to the pits. In total, the two cars generate data at the rate of 1MB every two seconds.

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Some of this data is sent back in real time through a high frequency telemetry system, which transmits data from the moving car to the pits. However, there is far more data available than can be extracted via that route. The excess has traditionally been transferred using a wired connection once the car has stopped – but even that is problematic, as crucial track time is lost waiting for the download to complete. This is where Technical Partner Qualcomm has helped the team optimise track time.

Engineers are now able to download that balance of data – which can be very bulky – in the time between when the car stops in front of the garage and is wheeled back into the garage via an extremely powerful wireless connection. The most noticeable benefit from this comes in understanding tyres via the infra-red camera system – and more specifically the speed at which information from that feed can be processed. In the past, the crew would plug in the cameras when the driver returned to the box and have just a few seconds to extract as much data as possible before the car returned to the track. There simply wasn’t enough time to extract the full data set until after a session, so the real-time nature of that data was lost.

Qualcomm’s technology allows the team to extract that information much more quickly. By the time the car pulls back into the garage, the engineers have now received that information wirelessly.

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Overall, the team’s telemetry systems generate 15 GB of raw car data per weekend, with post-processing adding a further 70 GB of data. That equates to 3.5 billion data points per car – or seven billion data points across all team operations – per weekend. Staggering numbers indeed, which are perfectly illustrated by the gearbox. In Monaco, around 19,000 gearshifts will be undertaken between both drivers over the course of the weekend – compared to roughly 15,000 in Barcelona – with each shift writing around 50,000 points of
data. While a gearshift itself happens in about 10 milliseconds, today the team can extract this information from the database in roughly 0.4 milliseconds.

As someone who follows F1 partnerships avidly I have for some time now found the emphasis on Information Technology partners at the Mercedes AMG Petronas Team quite strange, whilst not directly in competition with each other, these partners operate in similar sectors. Understanding the team’s focus on data collection, data analysis, and application of data, explains how each of these partners play a significant role in the success of the team and how their core competencies act to compliment each other.

Qualcomm have, with the team, developed systems to support rapid data logging and downloading of data, this data immediate requires storage space, Pure Storage supply this in the form of FlashArray-based data storage. With this technology, average transaction times have been reduced by around 40% – again, saving crucial decision making time for the engineers. This is great for trackside support, but the journey of the data does not end there.

During an average Grand Prix weekend around 200 GB of data is synched between the race track and the Race Support Room (RSR) at the team headquarters in Brackely UK. Transferring such vast quantities of data requires a fast, reliable and secure connection to ensure optimal collaboration between the team at base and their counterparts on the road wherever in the world they might be. This is where the TATA Communications global network comes into play. This same network SKY SPORTS are now using to rely F1 broadcast feed across Europe as explored here

This link enables real time communication and analysis to be managed between the circuit and RSR. From the circuit, on-track performance and reliability analysis, driver-specific system and car set-up work, car assembly and maintenance supervision data is beamed back to base, while, specialised system support, video analysis, competitor analysis and second-line performance analysis returns in the other direction.

Motor racing purists may question if this complex use of and fixation over data is really the right direction for motorsport. To be seen as the pinnacle of Motorsport, Formula One must pioneer new technologies. In the past the focus of this pioneering spirit has focused on the automotive industry. In my opinion, a team such as Mercedes AMG Petronas working with partners to  find solutions around data collection and usage reflect challenges in modern society and serve to broaden the applicability of motorsport engagement for business.

Technological solutions found through projects between Mercedes, Qualcomm, Pure Storage & Tata Communications will filter down into everyday consumers lives. developing partnerships to solve challenges within Formula One drive not only a team forward but shape the direction of industry and consumer expectation.

You Can find follow developments from Qualcomm via social media here

Keep up to date with the latest news from Tata Communications here

Check out the Pure Storage home page here

 

Formula One: Option Rally join Scuderia Ferrari

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If like me part of your enjoyment from an F1 weekend comes from looking out for livery team livery updates, you may have noticed that since the Spanish Grand Prix Scuderia Ferrari have been sporting some additional branding.

The branding comes in the form of the group Option Rally.

Option Rally are a trading platform specialising in lightning-fast Binary Option trading, offering clients the opportunity to trade on stocks, indices and commodities at various speeds, ranging from just 60 seconds. Commenting on the partnership a representative from Option Rally commented:

” We are delighted to be partnering with such a passionate, historic and competitive Formula One team. It made perfect sense as the leading binary brokerage to join forces with the most successful and trusted team in the world, Scuderia Ferrari”

Option rally branding can be found at the base of the sidepods of the SF16-H. Details on agreement length and value have not been disclosed at this time.

For more information on Option Rally follow them on Twitter here

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