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Is Kovalainen the most dissapointing talent in F1 history?


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#101 petri

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Posted 20 October 2009 - 05:56

Michael Andretti


Yep, I was going to mention him, too.

Edited by petri, 20 October 2009 - 05:56.


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#102 Tomerell

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Posted 20 October 2009 - 05:56

And Renault want Kubica/Glock not Kubica/Kovalainen!

Quite definitive.

Kovalainen -> off to some newbie team?


I dont think it has anything to do with his performance,rather than that Renault don't want to be dealing with anything that is related to Flavio even in past sentence...

#103 Tomerell

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Posted 20 October 2009 - 05:58

why does every thread about a Finn turns into a 'the car doesn't suit me" debate



I haven't heard that from Kimi in the latter part of this season  ;)

#104 Galko877

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Posted 20 October 2009 - 06:04

Kovalainen's reputation has been built on beating Schumacher at ROC. It was a mistake to draw conclusions from a race like that, we can all see that now. If ROC would mean something Mattias Ekström should be in F1 too.

#105 Arion

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Posted 20 October 2009 - 06:06

I haven't heard that from Kimi in the latter part of this season ;)


Exactly my point, when he's not beaten by his teammate, you don't hear that excuse.


#106 Tomerell

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Posted 20 October 2009 - 06:14

Exactly my point, when he's not beaten by his teammate, you don't hear that excuse.


Well you have to be honest, have you ever heard excuses like that from him... And being beated by is an other debate :p


#107 LB

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Posted 20 October 2009 - 06:22

From CART - Zanardi, Bourdais, Andretti all champions all failed in F1

ALL the F3000 champions - none won a title only Montoya, Panis and Alesi won races. It changes to GP2 and along comes Hamilton lol..

The ones that looked like superstars in the lower formula but never made it Sato, Byrne, Magnusson, Walker, Stephen South etc etc etc theres loads!



#108 Arion

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Posted 20 October 2009 - 07:08

Well you have to be honest, have you ever heard excuses like that from him... And being beated by is an other debate :p


Not from the man himself, but I've heard it here on this BB million times. It's interesting how his supporters are so convinced the car disadvantaged him while he's never said anything like that.

It's somewhat debatable this season, last season, no.


#109 blizzzzard

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Posted 20 October 2009 - 07:46

Nelsinho Piquet

#110 motorhead

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Posted 20 October 2009 - 08:01

You guys don't have BS rubber in Finland? Every Fin driver suffers from not knowing how to use this tyre brand.


Hahhaa, actually it´s the Michelin and Nokia tires which are the top-sellers in Finland´s icy roads in the winter ;)

#111 scheivlak

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Posted 20 October 2009 - 09:00

I'm not sure what it is with the Renault development programme. The last three drivers they've brought into F1 have looked very good in the lower formulae, and then like a fish out of water in F1 (although Heikki has been the best of a bad bunch). Piquet and Grosjean's F1 performances make them look like completely different people compared to their performances in lower formulae. Heikki just doesn't seem to have "it" either. Competant, but not a race winner (I'm not counting the one he inherited), and the other two...

Don't think Piquet came out of Renault's programme.

Kubica though.....

#112 June han

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Posted 20 October 2009 - 09:04

kovalainen is just a fair n°2 pilot. He claimed last year he was fighting for the title, but he showed over three years that the only teamate he could compete with was Fisico... Because he has more pressure now, he does the same mistakes he was doing the first year wiht renault, when <briatore said he coudn't have done worse for his first gp. how interesting is it to have a pilot that is a few tenth slower than his teamate all year long. It is really worth giving somebody else a chance. he's like ohter unsuccesful drivers on the grid such as nakajima, piquet, or even glock.

#113 petri

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Posted 20 October 2009 - 10:26

Exactly my point, when he's not beaten by his teammate, you don't hear that excuse.


Why should you hear that "excuse" if the car suits him? :drunk:


#114 saudoso

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Posted 20 October 2009 - 10:46

Mika won BS first titles so don't BS me :rotfl:


Mika had his head knocked, that's why. :stoned:


#115 saudoso

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Posted 20 October 2009 - 10:49

why does every thread about a Finn turns into a 'the car doesn't suit me" debate

Because the Japanes make tyres that don't suit them.

#116 Arion

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Posted 20 October 2009 - 11:22

Why should you hear that "excuse" if the car suits him? :drunk:


I'm not sure what you mean, we're agreeing there right? The car suits him fine, the difference is his teammate.


#117 Visionz

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Posted 20 October 2009 - 11:27

I think his main problem is not being able to handle pressure.

I'm afraid these last 2 seasons have wrecked his confidence and it might take long to recover from this.


I actually think that Heikki is exceptionally responsible and a sensitive guy too and these things make him stress out more than many other drivers.

When I say sensitive, I refer to his attitude about never admitting he didnt do well - I think he couldnt except the fact that he was slower than someone else even if it was proved to him somehow clearly..

I dont want to give my opinion to wether the car/tires suits or doesnt suit his style, but I think that even if he had a car exactly like he wanted and if he`d still lose to Lewis then in my opinion he wouldnt admit that he was just slower.

Heikki explains and analyzes things too much. Going fast isnt science, you either physically and pshychologically are a good racing driver or you are not.
Beying fast comes our subconsciousness - you dont think, you just do it.

Anyway, when I look at Heikki`s interviews nowdays he really seemes to be under pressure from himself and he looks nervous in way that he wasnt two-three years ago..

Edited by Visionz, 20 October 2009 - 11:30.


#118 Pikku Pakkanen

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Posted 20 October 2009 - 12:35

Not from the man himself, but I've heard it here on this BB million times. It's interesting how his supporters are so convinced the car disadvantaged him while he's never said anything like that.

It's somewhat debatable this season, last season, no.


Actually last year is debatable. Last autumn Kimi had 4 races in a row without points: Valencia, Spa, Monza, Singapore. Before those 4 races he was actually ahead of Massa in points. After those 4 races he was beating Massa again but had to help him and give him points.

So he had a bad period that lasted 4 races. Outside of those 4 races he was better than Massa.

http://f1-facts.com/...lts/season/2008


#119 petri

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Posted 20 October 2009 - 12:46

I'm not sure what you mean, we're agreeing there right? The car suits him fine, the difference is his teammate.


Ok, maybe I misunderstood the meaning of the word "excuse". Well, english is not my best language anyway...  ;)


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#120 Bouncing Pink Ball

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Posted 20 October 2009 - 13:08

Everything I read shows that Heikki, as an employee and just generally as a person, is much respected by the folks at McLaren. That's why they've given him every chance to fit his driving style to the sorts of cars they build. Unfortunately for all concerned, Heikki and the MacLaren cars are a poor match.

He isn't slow – he's shown that in qualifying – but he can't keep up the pace lap after lap. Would he do better at a different team? I think he might, and so I wouldn't begrudge him a slot on the grid next season provided, of course, that he shows improvement at his new home. He's not the driving disaster of all time, to be sure. He's got frustrating covered, though.



#121 plastik2k9

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Posted 20 October 2009 - 13:29

The idea of a second driver is to provide support for the first driver in the driver's championship, to have their own successes when the first driver has problems, and in turn provide support in the constructors championship for the team. Heikki has failed to to this two years running at McLaren, and it's part of the reason I'd say why McLaren were beaten by Ferrari last season for the WCC, and perhaps made Lewis' job harder in the WDC. He is a very nice guy, very much respected by the team also it seems, but he isn't performing to the level that is needed to mount a WCC bid.

He clearly can drive an F1 car though, just not at a top team level. He definitely deserves a drive somewhere though, because he makes few mistakes and is fairly consistent, and has experience now. He's definitely not the most disappointing talent in F1 ever, that's too extreme.

#122 maverick69

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Posted 20 October 2009 - 13:52

Everything I read shows that Heikki, as an employee and just generally as a person, is much respected by the folks at McLaren. That's why they've given him every chance to fit his driving style to the sorts of cars they build. Unfortunately for all concerned, Heikki and the MacLaren cars are a poor match.

He isn't slow – he's shown that in qualifying – but he can't keep up the pace lap after lap. Would he do better at a different team? I think he might, and so I wouldn't begrudge him a slot on the grid next season provided, of course, that he shows improvement at his new home. He's not the driving disaster of all time, to be sure. He's got frustrating covered, though.


Do you not think that it may be a case of Hamilton's relentless racepace making him look bad? Afterall Lewis was just as quick as most of the 2 stoppers (including Vettel) this weekend. As James Allen pointed out in a reply to a question on his blog - Heikki has had his "head done in" by the sheer competitiveness of Hamilton.

I think you'll see a different "better" Heikki when teamed up with a driver of lesser calibre than Hamilton.

#123 Bouncing Pink Ball

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Posted 20 October 2009 - 14:15

No, to be honest, I don't. Not entirely, anyway. What I do think is that Hamilton is both an exceptional talent (meaning he's legitimately going to do better overall) and a more compatible driver for the car he's in. Judging from his comments, not to mention the little problems he's had that don't seem to plague his teammate to the same extent, Heikki doesn't seem to suit MacLaren and vice versa. There are certainly some drivers who could race to the best a car can deliver no matter what; Heikki doesn't appear to be one of them.

There are those who need just the right feel from a car to show well. Evidence sort of points to Button being in this mold and look at him, he's the new WDC. Maybe Heikki isn't cut out for F1, maybe he's had the misfortune to run up against a driver so superior that he can't keep up and looks hopeless by comparison or maybe he's like Button and has to find the right combination of team and car. I haven't made up my mind yet but I think there's more to Heikki's struggles than just Lewis.

#124 WebBerK

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Posted 29 October 2009 - 20:14

Kova attack :eek:

Heikki gave today an interview to the "Helsingin Sanomat" complaining that McLaren priviledged Lewis, always giving the newest parts to him and always starting heavier in qualifying Q3.

Also, Heikki is sure that Maca haven't made their decision on seat #2, so he will wait bcs still wishes to stay.

#125 Francesc

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Posted 29 October 2009 - 20:20

Ricardo Rosset

#126 FenderJaguar

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Posted 29 October 2009 - 20:28

I don't think he's bad - he is midfield. I think the problem is that he had a lot of high expectations and then went to Renault at the wrong time. 2007 when we were used to see them at the top in 2005 and 2006. I think he did OK in later races during the season. He has not performed well in McLaren though. If Kovalainen had been in say Williams - like Rosberg - he wouldn't have had all that pressure. I would enjoy seeing him in a smaller team just because I think he still have some potential.

#127 RuB

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Posted 29 October 2009 - 20:30

Kova attack :eek:

Heikki gave today an interview to the "Helsingin Sanomat" complaining that McLaren priviledged Lewis, always giving the newest parts to him and always starting heavier in qualifying Q3.

Also, Heikki is sure that Maca haven't made their decision on seat #2, so he will wait bcs still wishes to stay.



I just have read it... he should know he is out 100% sure for 2010...

He says there is preferential treatment in Mclaren, new parts always for Hamilton, and when both get into Q3 he always has to be heavier than Hamilton.



PS:2007 anybody??

Edited by RuB, 29 October 2009 - 20:31.


#128 The Ragged Edge

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Posted 29 October 2009 - 20:35

Is Kovalainen the most disappointing talent in F1 history? That would mean he had some in the first place. IMO its a case of him being so battered and demoralised by Hamilton constantly out-performing him, that he will never achieve his potential whilst at McLaren. Is that Hamiltons or McLarens fault? No, its a case of Heikki not being mentally tough enough.

#129 Bouncing Pink Ball

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Posted 29 October 2009 - 21:04

He talks that he's being treated poorly, yet he wants to stay? Actually, the really odd part is that Heikki thinks he's got a shot at staying. He can't be serious. Does he know something we don't, or is he clumsily covering so that he doesn't have to say "Er, my manager tells me the phone's not ringing, so I'm going to keep on clinging to McLaren for now".

Poor Hiekki. I hope he has a drive somewhere next season. He really needs to start looking at what's available before all the seats are filled. Just in case, you know.



#130 Luca Pacchiarini

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Posted 29 October 2009 - 21:17

He's so boring.


He starts in a position and finishes the race in the same place.

I don't remember any overtaking from him...

If you start 8th and you finish 8th, you're a worse driver than someone who starts 8th, overtakes 7 cars and then makes a mistake and finishes 19th.

#131 egg1980

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Posted 30 October 2009 - 12:27

I am disappointed with Heiki - I don't know if I would be as harsh as many of the comments here - I also strongly suspect that people would have been saying exactly the same about Nico if he had been driving the second McLaren.
Heiki will reinvent himself as a good midfield driver, less than we expected of him, but to put him into the 'could beat Hamilton on his day' category isn't all that bad when you put it into context.

#132 TT6

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Posted 30 October 2009 - 12:38

He has dissappointed in McLaren, but so it may go if you to get into a team that happens to have a WDC on board, and a really good one aswell. His overall career hasn't been dissappointing however. He ate the cannibal after all... who hadn't been eaten earlier by no other than a double WDC.

The skill level of a person won't be really exposed until he's in a position he can't cope with. Kovalainen is somewhere between Fisi and Hamilton which puts him comfortably in the midfield. Most dissapointing, not even nearly so.

#133 ibing

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Posted 30 October 2009 - 12:54

I don't think he's that poor. he is midfield.

#134 billm99uk

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Posted 30 October 2009 - 13:28

Ricardo Rosset


Was Rosset that highly rated in the first place though?


#135 egg1980

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Posted 30 October 2009 - 13:32

Was Rosset that highly rated in the first place though?


I thought he paid to get into F1... maybe he disappointed himself.

#136 Gag Bueno

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Posted 30 October 2009 - 13:42

Agreed. While Heikki has been substandard in F1, some drivers have been even worse. Just recently, Nelson Piquet.


Exactly my opinion... I've been to Hungary 2006 and was really impressed by NP Jr. declassing the whole GP2 field in the rain... I must :blush: confess, this day I thought he could be even better than his father. But his F1 "career" was a real joke, and after knowing about Crashgate, a very bad one...

#137 Biggles Flies Undone

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Posted 30 October 2009 - 14:21

Kova attack :eek:

Heikki gave today an interview to the "Helsingin Sanomat" complaining that McLaren priviledged Lewis, always giving the newest parts to him and always starting heavier in qualifying Q3.


Captain Slowvalainen would also appear to be half witted. No team is going to want their slowest driver holding up the fastest during the start of the race.

Edited by Biggles Flies Undone, 30 October 2009 - 14:22.


#138 ex Rhodie racer 2

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Posted 30 October 2009 - 14:45

Captain Slowvalainen would also appear to be half witted. No team is going to want their slowest driver holding up the fastest during the start of the race.

Didn´t look so slow in 2nd practice today. Can´t remember exactly were he finished the session or where Hamilton was. Maybe someone can remind us?  ;)
Oh yes, I forgot, it´s only Friday practice. Silly me. :blush: :lol:

#139 Fatgadget

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Posted 30 October 2009 - 15:05

The guy is quite good I think.Hard to understand why during races he seems to freeze.Surely its not because his equipment is inferior to Lewis'? I mean, why would McLaren fook up someone they pay a sizable coin especially this season when they need all the help they could get?

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#140 Racing Dutchman

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Posted 30 October 2009 - 15:12

Let it be a lesson for all those people immidiately comparing drivers to Michael Schumacher after a couple of seasons or a couple of wins in a motorsport event.

#141 Oho

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Posted 30 October 2009 - 15:15

Kovalainen's reputation has been built on beating Schumacher at ROC. It was a mistake to draw conclusions from a race like that, we can all see that now. If ROC would mean something Mattias Ekström should be in F1 too.


You have got to be kidding me, I find this comment incredibly ignorant short sighted and insulting even toward people who actually appraise F1 drivers and make hiring decisions.

#142 craftverk

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Posted 30 October 2009 - 15:22

Kovalainen just can't look after his tyres, plain and simple.

#143 Biggles Flies Undone

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Posted 30 October 2009 - 15:50

Didn´t look so slow in 2nd practice today. Can´t remember exactly were he finished the session or where Hamilton was. Maybe someone can remind us?;)
Oh yes, I forgot, it´s only Friday practice. Silly me. :blush: :lol:


Er.. you know full well we are discussing race pace. When Slowvalainen fails to feel his rears graining the last place Hamilton wants to be is in the following slow train to nowhere ):

Edited by Biggles Flies Undone, 30 October 2009 - 15:51.


#144 tsaritsyn

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Posted 30 October 2009 - 15:56

Was Rosset that highly rated in the first place though?

He was the 1995 runner-up in F3000.

#145 Arion

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Posted 30 October 2009 - 16:29

Oh yes, I forgot, it´s only Friday practice. Silly me. :blush: :lol:


yes, I'm glad you realised.



#146 TT6

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Posted 30 October 2009 - 19:41

Kovalainen just can't look after his tyres, plain and simple.


I think it's quite the opposite. He's smooth style doesn't allow tyres to warm up properly - I never heard he'd cooked his tyres.

#147 Anssi

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Posted 30 October 2009 - 19:45

He said he has tried to change his driving style to that of Lewis because the car works best that way. It's about taking less smooth lines and braking. It's what the team has expected him to do. It is not a fair situation to assess a driver's talent level.

#148 Wouter

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Posted 30 October 2009 - 19:51

I think it's quite the opposite. He's smooth style doesn't allow tyres to warm up properly - I never heard he'd cooked his tyres.

In 2008 he said that he wore out his rear tyres too quickly - this hit him at (even) wet Silverstone for example, which led to a couple of spins and only a 5th place after he had been so good in the (dry) qualifying - and in spite of his wet weather driving being quite good in a number of races over his F1 career.

Even this year, for example at the Nürburgring he wore out his tyres quickly, as he admitted and which led to him falling back from a good grid position to a barely held on to 8th place.

#149 craftverk

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Posted 30 October 2009 - 20:02

I think it's quite the opposite. He's smooth style doesn't allow tyres to warm up properly - I never heard he'd cooked his tyres.

Have you been hiding under a rock?

#150 MLC

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Posted 30 October 2009 - 20:38

Actually last year is debatable. Last autumn Kimi had 4 races in a row without points: Valencia, Spa, Monza, Singapore. Before those 4 races he was actually ahead of Massa in points. After those 4 races he was beating Massa again but had to help him and give him points.

So he had a bad period that lasted 4 races. Outside of those 4 races he was better than Massa.

http://f1-facts.com/...lts/season/2008


So you've just proven that Kimi beat Massa, if you remove the races where Kimi didn't beat Massa? :wave: