Hamilton opens up on plans to remain in F1 ahead of 2023 season
Lewis Hamilton is set to force through major tweaks at Mercedes after criticising the design of the W14. The Silver Arrows are expected to change the position of the seat after Hamilton stressed he was too close to the front wheels.
Toto Wolff made the admission ahead of this weekend’s cancelled Emilia Ronagna Grand Prix, during which the Silver Arrows were expected to bring further upgrades. Meanwhile, the organisers of the forthcoming race in Monaco expect the race to go ahead as planned following the issues at Imola.
There had been fears among some that gear and equipment may be left temporarily stranded in Emilia Romagna due to the extreme weather conditions.
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That’s going to conclude our rolling F1 coverage for today.
Don’t forget to return early tomorrow morning, when we’ll be back with a fresh feed to keep you updated throughout the weekend, despite the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix being postponed.
Horner says Perez and Verstappen ignore Red Bull advice
Red Bull boss Christian Horner has suggested that advice about ‘driving for the team’ instead of competing individually goes in one ear and out of the other when it comes to Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez.
The team’s dominance in 2023 means it will realistically between the Red Bull pair to win the world title. Verstappen currently has a 14-point lead after winning in Miami last time out.
“It’s about being transparent and going through things,” Horner told The Financial Times. “You go over the expectations with them and you remind them that they drive for a team and that they represent every member of the team when they drive the cars. They also represent all partners and sponsors, so it’s not just about them.
“Of course they take that in during a briefing or a meeting, but as soon as the helmet goes on, it goes out the other ear. But as you could see in Miami, there is respect between the two drivers. You saw that then they raced against each other. It was tough but fair and they gave each other enough space, which we also asked for.”
Steiner makes bold Haas prediction
Haas boss Guenther Steiner has set the team an ambitious target – to win Grands Prix.
While the Italian does not expect the objective to be reached this season, he has refused to rule out the possibility in the future, and Kevin Magnussen showed what was possible last time out by qualifying fourth for the Miami Grand Prix.
“The present objective this year is to move up in the Constructors’ Championship from last year, getting better every year – it’s as simple as this – and at some stage we want to be winning races,” said Steiner, according to Planet F1.
“I don’t know how far away it is and I’m not going to say it’s this season or next season, but at some stage, it will happen with Haas.”
Tsunoda joins Italian clean-up effort
AlphaTauri star Yuki Tsunoda has endeared himself to fans by joining in the clean-up effort as Emilia Romagna suffers the effects of severe flooding.
Thousands have been displaced from their homes and at least 13 people have died as a result of the extreme weather conditions, which saw this weekend’s Imola Grand Prix cancelled.
In Faenza, where AlphaTauri are based, pictures show Tsunoda helping to sweep the streets along side other members of the team’s staff.
F1 and Ferrari make classy gestures after Imola cancellation
F1 chief Stefano Domenicali has released a statement after the cancellation of the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, with the sport set to donate just shy of £1million towards relief efforts amid extreme flooding in the area.
“I was born and grew up in the marvellous lands of Emilia Romagna, a place that is living through some of the saddest moments in its history,” read part of Domenicali’s statement.
Italian F1 team Ferrari have also pledged the same amount after severe flooding forced thousands out of their homes and caused at least 13 fatalities.
F1 coverage shake-up
The Monaco Grand Prix will be broadcast by F1 for the first time next weekend, having been handed over by Tele Monte Carlo, who have faced criticism for their coverage in recent years.
The shake-up means that, for the first time in the history of the sport, F1 is responsible for covering every single race on the calendar.
It affects world feed footage only, with the Grand Prix to remain on Sky Sports in the UK. However, broadcasters from around the world use world feed footage when showing action on track.
The development could signal positive news for fans if coverage of F1’s glamour race improves for years to come.
Hill unsure about Mercedes upgrades
Former F1 world champion Damon Hill has been left confused by mixed messages coming out of the Mercedes camp over their much-anticipated upgrades package.
The Silver Arrows were due to trial their new-look car at Imola this weekend, but severe weather conditions saw the race postponed.
“I think George [Russell] spoke after Miami and he was downplaying the upgrades, saying ‘Listen, don’t expect too much’,” Hill told the F1 Nation podcast.
“Then you have Toto [Wolff] saying, ‘We have got this big package coming’, and of course we’re expecting a lot.
“We’re expecting a huge amount, especially if they talk about the sidepod, because that’s been the big bone of contention over the last two years – why do their sidepods look so different to everyone else?
“And then you have the people at Mercedes saying, ‘Well that’s actually a small part of the aero package, and you’re making too much of it’. But there’s got to be something in it.”
Sainz glum about gap to Red Bull
Ferrari star Carlos Sainz claims that the team’s inability to fight for race wins is more painful than his position in the Drivers’ Championship.
The Spaniard is currently fifth in the standings, but prospects of notching a Grand Prix victory this season appear slim with Red Bull having picked up all five between them so far in 2023.
“It’s been tougher than any other year,” Sainz told The Race. “It doesn’t hurt me so much being fourth in Constructors’ or fifth or sixth in Drivers’, it hurts me more the gap to Red Bull.
“If now we would be sitting fourth in the Constructors’, but we know that every weekend we have a chance to make a pole and win a race, it would be easier to accept.”
Inside Max Verstappen’s race preparation as Red Bull star dominates F1
Max Verstappen has lifted the lid on his pre-race preparations in a behind-the-scenes look into the Red Bull garage.
A video released by Verstappen shows the Dutchman going through reaction tests, exercises and debriefs before stepping into the car.
It gives an insight into how the 25-year-old gets into race-winning mode, having beaten Lewis Hamilton and Charles Leclerc in recent seasons.
The footage was taken at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix where Verstappen secured P2 behind team-mate Sergio Perez.
Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton have different weekend plans as race cancelled
Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton have put together very different schedules after the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix was cancelled.
Red Bull star Verstappen will still be racing as he participates in an esports event.
Meanwhile, Hamilton has snubbed track action for partying as he was spotted at a glamour ball on Wednesday.
The Mercedes star was snapped at the launch of Hailey Bieber’s beauty line in London just hours after F1 bosses officially confirmed the race would not go ahead.
Lewis Hamilton new deal set for delay as race cancelled
Lewis Hamilton’s contract talks are set for a likely delay after the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix was cancelled.
Mercedes were expected to introduce major new upgrades this weekend in what could have been the Silver Arrows’ resurgence after a poor 2023.
After ditching their concept in Bahrain, the German marque was building up for the first European race at Imola with both drivers understood to be excited about the changes.
Toto Wolff confirmed the team would enjoy aerodynamic tweaks with the installation of a new floor.
Front suspension upgrades were also expected to be introduced in a move which could have fixed many of the team’s problems.
Lewis Hamilton gets one over Max Verstappen
Lewis Hamilton continues to earn more than Max Verstappen despite struggling at Mercedes in recent years.
The seven-time champion earned more money than his former F1 title rival due to a series of lucrative off-track deals, according to Forbes.
Hamilton earned a total of £52million ($65m) in 2022, making him the 21st highest-paid athlete in the world.
Meanwhile, Verstappen was just behind with total earnings of £51m ($64m) last year.
Novak Djokovic and Charles Leclerc set for head-to-head battle
Novak Djokovic and Charles Leclerc will battle it out on the pitch in a celebrity football match ahead of the Monaco Grand Prix.
Around 30 celebrities are expected to take part in the Monaco World Stars Football Match which takes place over the Grand Prix weekend.
Djokovic will line up for the Star Team alongside a range of sports stars including jet-ski champion Lisa Battaglia.
Leclerc will play for the opposing team alongside a selection of F1 stars including his Ferrari team-mate Carlos Sainz.
Eddie Jordan reveals he almost sold half his team to F1 legend
Eddie Jordan has admitted he almost sold half his F1 team as part of a negotiating tool to sign an F1 legend.
The Irishman almost gave up a 50 per cent stake in his Jordan squad in a bid to strike a deal with Ayrton Senna.
Jordan says the pair were “very far into the negotiations” before the iconic driver’s untimely death at the 1994 San Marino Grand Prix.
Jordan said: “Believe this or not, but I offered him 50 per cent, free of charge, to come and drive for Jordan, but he would have to stay on as an owner, because I believed, with Senna in the team, the actual value of the team would be more than doubled.”
Fernando Alonso and Michael Schumacher comparisons made
Fernando Alonso may have been stronger in his 40s than Michael Schumacher because he never had a complete shut-off from racing, according to ex-British F1 star David Coulthard.
Schumacher walked away from F1 in 2006 before returning to the sport with Mercedes in 2010.
However, the German wasn’t up to scratch with just one pole position and one top-three finish in three years.
Alonso took part in a range of other racing series during his time swasy from F1 such as IndyCar and Le Mans.
Coulthard said: I think, in comparison to Michael, who stopped and no longer was racing, then went and played in motorbikes and then had a crash and broke a vertebra, and then came back to Formula One three years after he’d originally stopped – he could still do go through the motions.”
Monaco GP no longer under threat
Organisers behind this year’s Monaco Grand Prix are confident the race will go ahead despite earlier fears.
There had been some concern that trucks would not arrive in the Principality due to transport issues with flooding around the Emilia Romagna region.
However, those behind the race feel all threats are now gone and expect the first gear to arrive over the weekend.
A spokesperson for the Automobile Club de Monaco (ACM) said: “The trucks arrive tomorrow.
“Our logistics teams are ready to welcome them.”
Lewis Hamilton set for Mercedes changes
Mercedes will make changes to their cockpit after Hamilton claimed he was sitting too close to the front wheels.
Hamilton stressed it was one of the “worst feelings” in a racing car with Wolff having listened to his star man.
Wolff told Speed Week: “We have a leeway of up to 15 centres in the position of the cockpit.
“It’s true that our cockpit is a little further forward than some of the others and that irritates Lewis. That was already the case in 2022.”
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