Tag Archives: Formula 1

Formula One: Unifin join the Lotus F1 team + Qualifying Report

Motor Racing - Formula One World Championship - Mexican Grand Prix - Practice Day - Mexico City, Mexico

Mexican Financial Services provider Unifin have joined the Lotus F1 team as Formula One returns to Mexico this weekend. Not unfamiliar to the F1 grid Unifin backed the Sauber F1 team during the 2012 season.

Follow this link to discover more about the services Unifin have to offer.

Lotus F1 Team Qualifying Report:

Romain Grosjean has qualified twelfth and Pastor Maldonado thirteenth for tomorrow’s Mexican Grand Prix. Both drivers missed out on the top ten decider with close lap times separating the field for a dry but cloud-bordered session.

Romain Grosjean, E23-04. Q: P12, 1:21.038. FP3: P13, 1:22.184
“We’re at a very high altitude, at a track with very low grip, requiring good downforce – which we know are not our strongest points – so we weren’t massively confident of our performance heading into qualifying. We did better than expected, even though we struggled to get the tyres to work. We still have a good opportunity tomorrow; it’s a long race where everyone’s brakes and engines are likely to struggle. The start will be very important; we’ll try to use all our experience and make a decent result happen.”

Pastor Maldonado, E23-03. Q: P13, 1:21.261. FP3: P12, 1:22.042        
“I was hoping for a little bit better from qualifying but we were struggling for front grip and the rear stability wasn’t fantastic. We expected more of a benefit from running with the new tyres but we weren’t able to unlock it. It’s a long race, we usually have good race pace so let’s go for some more points.”

Alan Permane, Trackside Operations Director:
“There’s potential for exciting battles. We’re certainly targeting points.”

How was qualifying for the team?
It was a tricky session for us. The grip levels were changing with the temperature and the circuit seemed to get slower at the end of Q2. The trick was to be on a fast lap in the fast-slow-fast lap cycle when the track surface and temperature were at their best. We’re not a million miles away from where we expected to be in qualifying so we’re looking to maximise everything for the race.

What are the considerations for tomorrow’s race?
There’s a greater chance of rain than today which we’re very aware of as this can make for a very dynamic race. If it is dry then we can expect very low tyre degradation and close monitoring of the brakes. We should learn a lot tomorrow as the race unfolds and there’s potential for exciting battles through the field. We’re certainly targeting points.

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Formula One: Williams F1 Team suport the release of SPECTRE at the Mexican GP

007
Jaguar’s C-X75 supercar featured in the new Bond adventure, SPECTRE, made its Americas debut in Mexico City today with Williams Martini Racing driver Felipe Massa at the wheel. This activity celebrates the Americas movie premiere and the Formula One™ Gran Premio de Mexico.

SPECTRE, the 24th James Bond film, from Albert R. Broccoli’s EON Productions, Metro-Goldwyn Mayer Studios and Sony Pictures Entertainment, sees the Jaguar C-X75 driven by latest Bond nemesis Hinx in one of the movie’s most iconic high speed car chases.

Driven by actor Dave Bautista, who plays Hinx in the movie, the C-X75 supercar, named the most advanced Jaguar ever created, was provided by Jaguar Land Rover Special Vehicle Operations (SVO) in collaboration with development partner Williams Advanced Engineering.

Williams Advanced Engineering, the technology and engineering services business of the Williams Group, collaborated with Jaguar Land Rover to design and build the original Jaguar C-X75 prototype, variations of which appear in the film in a spectacular car chase sequence through Rome alongside the Aston Martin DB10.

Seven new C-X75s were built at the Williams facility in collaboration with Jaguar Land Rover’s Special Operations division. This included two “hero” cars that retained the interior and hybrid powertrain of the original, and five stunt cars built with a level of robustness that could withstand complex and demanding stunt sequences, using a modified Jaguar supercharged V8 and a bespoke space-frame chassis.

Williams Martini Racing driver Felipe Massa, said: “It was a thrill to take the wheel of a real stunt car used in a Bond movie.  Jaguar partnered with Williams Advanced Engineering on the production of these stunning supercars, so it was great to experience some of what my colleagues have developed outside of F1.  It was so much fun, and very exciting to be driving the Jaguar on an actual SPECTRE location here in Mexico City.”

Williams will also display a 007 SPECTRE logo on the top of the chassis and 007 logos on the wing mirrors of both FW37s at this weekend’s race.

Speaking about the updated livery Claire Williams, Deputy Team Principal and Commercial Director of Williams, said: “As a quintessentially British team, we were more than happy to work with two other iconic British brands, in Jaguar Land Rover and the Bond franchise, to show our support this week for the much anticipated launch of SPECTRE.”

Formula One: Interlagos Upgrades

Interlagos Media centre

Later today Formula One will complete it’s return to Mexico at the Autódromo Hermanos Rodríguez. The substantially upgraded circuit looks set host a thrilling race with a healthy mix of high speed corners and, hopefully, overtaking generating complexes.

Not looking to wish away the race weekend, but my thoughts have already begun to turn towards Brazil and the incredible Interlagos ( or Autódromo José Carlos Pace as the circuit is officially named). Last season the circuit agreed a contract extension with Formula One Management securing their place on the calendar until 2020. This extension was agreed under the proviso of the circuit owners undertaking substantial upgrades requiring investment upwards of $74 million.

In 2014 the entire circuit was resurfaced, the 2015 upgrades have been equally substantial, with a new media centre and paddock buildings having been developed. This has required the circuit to be closed for much of the year, the following images reveal the extent of the work completed and the progress made by the circuit:

Interlargos Paddock complex Interlargos Paddock April Interlargos Pit Entry - Apil

Images taken following the demolition of the existing infrastructure in April 2015

interlagos Media centre Interlargos Pit Entry Interlagos Paddock

Images of the new media centre positioned on pit lane entry and new team buildings in the paddock. Images published October 23rd.

From these images it looks like there is still some work to be done to complete the buildings prior to F1’s arrival in a just two weeks time, but on the face of it the circuit owners appear to have successfully developed new facilities at the circuit without destroying the soul of this historic venue.

Images sourced through: Autódromo de Interlagos

Formula One: Austin – Lewis Hamilton 3 times World Champion!

Lewis Hamilton - Champion

Lewis Hamilton clinches his third World Drivers’ Championship in thrilling United States Grand Prix with Nico Rosberg completing a historic Silver Arrows 1-2

  • Lewis took his 10th win of the season, the 43rd of his Formula One career, en route to sealing his third World Drivers’ Championship crown
  • The result sees Lewis become the 10th driver to win three or more titles and the only Briton to successfully defend his crown
  • Today also saw Lewis become the first driver to claim ten or more victories in consecutive seasons
  • Nico Rosberg finished second to clinch his 12th podium of the season and 38th of his Formula One career
  • The result marks the 25th 1-2 finish for the Silver Arrows in Formula One and the 50th for Mercedes-Benz power
  • Both drivers started on intermediate tyres, with each pitting twice for option (soft) compound slicks
  • MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS now lead Ferrari by 200 points in the Constructors’ Championship

Lewis Hamilton
It’s an overwhelming moment. Remembering my first British Championship, when my dad and me drove home singing ‘We Are the Champions’. Thinking about how much my family sacrificed – my Mum, my Dad, my whole family. And also thinking about my fans. They give me so much energy and I hope I inspire them to never give up on their hopes and dreams. The race today was really amazing and anything could have happened. The last 10 – 15 laps were extraordinary – it was just a crazy, crazy race. I was in the lead, then I was fourth and the conditions were really tricky. Nico was driving really well, too. All the way through, I was thinking; “The Championship is there somewhere… how can I get it?” It was so close I could smell it and there was never a  moment I didn’t believe I could do it. It’s just incredible to equal Ayrton, too. My target was always three titles as he was the one who inspired me. There is no one I want to equal now – I just want to carry on as far and long as I can. For any driver, you want to win in anything you compete in – but this is the ultimate goal. Championships mean greatness – yours and your team’s! This Team has been so amazing. I feel incredibly thankful. I thought I would win with this team, so that’s why I moved… and I did!

Toto Wolff, Head of Mercedes-Benz Motorsport

First of all, a huge congratulations to Lewis. He has driven like a Champion all season and now rightly takes his place in a special group with a third title. I have no doubt there is more to come from him, so if we can keep delivering a car that is capable of doing the job then anything is possible for him. For Nico is has been an unlucky year in many ways. But he has shown his fighting spirit once again today and that will not change in the seasons to come. Looking back at today, we saw a fantastic race from start to finish and I hope that everybody watching was as entertained as we were – particularly the people in the grandstands who braved the weather this weekend. On the pit wall it was a very difficult race to manage, with so many decisions to make and so many marginal calls with the safety cars. We tried to play it fair and square as we always have done and perhaps not every call was the right one. But in the end Lewis had the World Champion’s luck on his side and when you drive the way he has done this season you earn that luck. The first corner was certainly a tense moment and Nico was clearly not happy. It’s never going to happen that a driver is completely happy to see a rival winning. But we have three races left and it’s crucial that we don’t allow today’s incident to have further consequences. We will go away, have a few days of cooling off, and then talk. Looking ahead, we have three races still to go. I have never been in that situation where everything is comfortable and I can sit back and enjoy the race as a fan, so I’m looking forward to seeing our two drivers fight flat out with nothing to lose.

Paddy Lowe, Executive Director (Technical)
What a day! Massive congratulations first and foremost to Lewis. A third World Championship is a great credit to all the hard work he has put in not only this season but over a fantastic Formula One career to date. It is very much deserved and I think he can rightly stake his claim as a legend of the sport. At the same time, all credit to Nico today. He’s had a tough season in terms of luck but has kept pushing throughout. He drove superbly today and, bar one small mistake which handed Lewis the lead, would surely have won the race. It’s been an emotional day – not just for Lewis and the team but also for the sport. We saw a truly incredible race – one of the most exciting for many years – which atoned for what had been a pretty grim weekend. The fans here in Austin have been fantastic despite the conditions and very much deserved the entertainment we saw today as a reward for their dedication.

EXCLUSIVE: Interview with Manor F1 Team apparel supplier Erreà + Store Discount Code

Motor Racing - Formula One World Championship - Malaysian Grand Prix - Practice Day - Sepang, Malaysia

In the first of a series of exclusive interviews with commercial and technical partners involved in Motorsport, Fabrizio Taddei, Export manager for Erreà, the apparel partner for the Manor Formula One team offers unique insights into; how the partnership was initially established, the challenges & opportunities Formula One engagement presents, and the satisfaction around launching the special edition Alexander Rossi fan-wear ahead of this weekends United States Grand Prix.

By way of thanking supporters of the Manor F1 team and readers of JWGrandPrix, Erreà would like to offer this exclusive discount code: PROMOMANORF1 offering a 15% discount on any purchase in the Erreà online store.

Fabrizio, let’s kick off with you talking us through how the Erreà Manor F1 team partnership came about?

I’ve always been a motor sport and F1 fan since my teenage years in the 70’s and I was lucky to meet 2 former members of Marussia, Mr. Mike Scudamore and Mr. Mark Zimmer at a famous Sport Business event in London, by start talking we found so many common points and we start planning a possible partnership.  Therefore it was a little bit of good luck and a little bit of try to make the best you can out of a possible business meeting.

What are Erreà’s expectations around the Manor Marussia F1 team agreement?

First of all, for us passion is always the driving force when entering into a new arena or a new “circuit”.  We are truly passionate sports people. A result is always the sum of many aspects that just adds up.

The exposure is important due to the global reach of F1, entering in a new sport is important for us to learn new skills and to bring something of our experience into a new market.

Alexander Rossi

With Alexander Rossi joining the team for selected races in the conclusion of the season, Erreà have made available to fans special edition Manor F1 Team clothing, how important to you was it to have an American driver join the team line up?

This decision was taken in conjunction with Manor F1 team. Despite a very tight deadline we managed to produce a special t-shirt and a special driver cap in time for Austin.

This is what we consider the start of a more important and wide range of products for the coming season. Due to the very hectic start of the season for Manor, everything this season was made at the last moment therefore it was more a case of reacting quickly compare to planning for us and for the team.

I truly believe we both did a great job and the guys and girls in the team look great and sporty in their Erreà gear. Having Alexander in the team for Austin is just the icing on the cake. All the Manor drivers are really nice guys and great drivers and I was lucky to meet all of them, Will, Roberto, Fabio and Alexander.

Will Erreà build on 2015 Formula One engagement over 2016 and beyond?

This is the plan.

Did Erreà define any key performance indicators around Formula One involvement in 2015?

The indication and the feedback from fans have been very good, as I’ve said before this is a new venture for us in year one we’re not looking for any key indication; we are looking to build the foundations for a future in supplying Motor Sport teams.

How would Erreà describe its experience of the world of Formula One and its fans when compared to other sporting categories?

For me personally and for other members of Erreà staff that were fortunate to touch “first hands” the F1 community, so far it’s a great experience. There is nothing more exciting than Motor Sport, fans are incredibly passionate and my feeling is that they also are more “knowledgeable” about their sport compare to other fans in other sports.

Has Formula One involvement presented any unexpected challenges or opportunities for Erreà?

Not really, the business principle for a manufacturer and supplier like us are more or less still the same, obviously it was important a constant dialogue with Manor staff to understand fully what their needs are.

What trends do Erreà see emerging in the sportswear industry in the coming years? 

Complicated question, it really changes from sport to sport and it is not easy to reply in few lines. Personally I believe that the key factor will be for a manufacturer to integrate new technology applications (gprs, cardios, sensors etc.) into technical gear. Everything is moving towards a more “performance gear”

Would Erreà recommend Formula One involvement to other companies as a tool to increase brand awareness? 

Yes, with no doubt.

How does the cost of Formula One involvement compare to other sports? 

F1 is the pinnacle of professional sport; therefore it’s more expensive compare to other sports.

What has been Erreà’s highlight of the Formula One season? 

Everything was great and challenging for us, from supplying the entire team one week before Melbourne without a contract and with a gentleman hand shake, to supplying a new range in the middle of the season, to decide, together with Manor, to produce special gear for Alexander for his home GP. Sport is about challenges and we had plenty of challenges this year with Manor if you consider that all this was mixed with our “normal” business of supplying Football, Basketball, Volleyball, Rugby, Handball and Running teams throughout Europe.

Fabrizio, thank you for your time today, to conclude our interview could you give an overview of Erreà as a company?

The company was founded in 1988 by the Chairman, Mr. Angelo Gandolfi, his wife Rosanna and 5 employees of which 3 are still at the company.  Once a Football player and a team manager, Angelo Gandolfi eventually decided to embark in a new adventure and make his dream come true. He therefore combined his love for sport with his attention to details, a characteristic that has always been peculiar to him, and in 1988 he began to produce the first Erreà technical athletic apparel.

In a few years, thanks to the high quality of its products, the greatest attention to design details and its excellent customer service, Erreà grew unrestrained. It became the technical sponsor to a number of sports clubs, from junior amateur teams to some of the most famous clubs in Italy and around the world: not just football, but also volleyball, basketball, rugby and other sports. Our values reflect the strictest values of true athletes, who do not want to accept any compromise when physical exercise is most demanding: that is why so many teams have chosen our technical athletic apparel. Nowadays Erreà Sport, based on the experience gained throughout the years, produces customised sportswear and garments thanks to two fundamental factors: the internal and direct management of the entire production chain and the creativity and skills of its graphic designers. One of Erreà’ s great prides is that it produces all of its products in-house, which means that the products are conceived, designed and manufactured within the corporate plants. This assures a final product of excellent quality and delivery of a flawless customer service, capable of satisfying any need, even at short notice.

ManorBack

Opinion: Formula One – Breaking down the 4th wall

Sochi

Over the weekend of the Russian GP I found myself in Austria,  unable to pick up UK F1 coverage either SKY Sports F1 (my preference) or BBC. To be honest after a rather dull race in 2014 my expectations for the race  were quite low, so trying to stay positive I looked upon the race as an opportunity to work on my German.

ORF

Discovering ORF hold Austrian rights for sport I was excited to hear through Twitter positive reports about the broadcaster, especially when compared to RTL and importantly had no breaks during the race. It then dawned on me I would get to hear interviews from the likes of Toto Wolff and Niki Lauda in their mother tongue, and I might get to hear a new perspective on the sport.

Now, I should preface this with a comment that the race coverage was good, possibly helped by a great race. Co commentary from Adrian Sutil was, different, and I definitely learned some new German. Who knew that the marbles that caught out Romain Grosjean whilst following Jenson Button through T3 were actually Gummikugeln ( yes I had visions of gummy bears attacking a Lotus) but the pre and post race interviews… terrible.

I would have thought with any language barrier removed team members and drivers, such as Hulkenberg and Rosberg would be more engaged more insightful and dare I said more entertaining. I experienced the exact opposite. It felt like Toto Wollf was reading a script and the drivers (yes I know they had bad results) couldn’t wait for the interviews to be over.

skysportsf1

BBC Sport

So in summary I would like to thank the production team behind the humanised presenting style the BBC launched back in 2009 when they regained the UK broadcasting rights to the sport. Both the BBC and SKY have managed to break down the 4th wall making teams and drivers real people. Perhaps this approach isn’t right for Austrian audiences, but as guy on holiday I can tell you a missed it, so much so I re watched the entire SKY Sports broadcast when I got home on Tuesday!

Formula One : Sochi Stats – Tyres

Williams Sochi

Tyre statistics of the day:

Supersoft Soft Intermediate Wet
kms driven *  0  1071  298  473
sets used overall **  0  20  18  14
highest number of laps **  0  15  8  12

* The above number gives the total amount of kilometres driven in FP1 and FP2 today, all drivers combined.
** Per compound, all drivers combined.

Comment: With the diesel spill in FP1 reducing available testing time and mixed conditions in FP2, teams are yet to trial the supersoft tyre around the Sochi circuit. Improved conditions are expected over the rest of the weekend so we can expect a very busy FP3 and with a wealth of super soft tyres available to all teams, an aggressive approach to qualifying.