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Disruptions to established teams and the effect on 2010 performance


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#1 anbeck

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Posted 07 January 2010 - 13:52

Hi there,

in a recent news-story on Autosport.com[1] Mike Gascoyne mentions that he is optimistic about not beeing too far behind the established teams

especially because there has been more and more disruption to some established teams.


I am not quite sure what he wants to say, but my guess would be that he knows or hopes that some established teams have encountered problems over the winter, hindering their development. What might these be?

One obvious case is Red Bull: The engine drama about whether or not to switch to Mercedes or even Cosworth or keeping Renault has certainly not helped designing the rear end of the car.

Even more obvious is probably the case of (BMW-)Sauber. I wouldn't be surprised to see them fall to STR's level, that is, to the back of the old teams. Unless, of course, they pull off a Brawn, as I could imagine the team switching its efforts to the 2010 car quite early on. Even though that's extremely unlikely, last winter has told us not to bet highly against it.

Then, of course, there's Renault. Having been on the verge of a pull-out, and then a half-hearted take-over certainly hasn't boosted the spirits. I can only imagine an expertise-drain, rather than the other way round (same for Sauber, though).

But what about the other teams? The Mercedes take-over of Brawn probably didn't hinder the design team to continue, McLaren would not have been distracted by all that either. As for Williams, one might consider that the Cosworth-switch isn't exactly a big step forward.

Concerning McLaren and Ferrari, I'm excited to see how their coping-strategies with their 2009-dogs plays out. McLaren tried to understand the problems of the car, putting a lot of effort into the dog, hoping to really understand the car's problem before switching to the 2010 racer. Ferrari apparently tried the other way: binning the 2009 car as early as possible and hoping that they have learned enough to build a good 2010 car.

We have talked a lot about the new teams' performances, but taking all these disruptions and strategies into account, why not talk about the old teams' relative performances?

My guess would be:

1. Mercedes: Okay, their 2009 performance was due to Honda's switching efforts early to this car and partly to the double-diffusor coup. But as they had to fight up to the last race of 2009, this probably pulled resources from the 2010 development to the 2009er. Still, I think Ross Brawn is the resource-allocation master, so his team will remain very fast. If somebody put a gun to my head, I'd bet that they will start very fast.

2. McLaren: I think trying to understand the 2009 car before switching to the 2010 design will pay off. They will be up there with Mercedes, probably tied 1st.

3. RBR: Relatively they will fall behind, not least due to their engine situation. Fighting for the 2009 title certainly has drawn resources from the 2010 car, similar to Brawn. I think there's a good chance that McLaren gets past them.

4. Ferrai: They didn't impress me in the latter part of 2009, so I would be surprised if they had a great car, knowing they had problems to understand their old one.

Behind these teams I expect a gap, with Cosworth-hindered Williams, Force India, ashes of Sauber and Renault, and STR fighting it out. Whether or not one of the new teams might challenge the old ones... I don't know!

What do you think?
a.

[1]http://www.autosport...rt.php/id/80763

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#2 DFV

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Posted 07 January 2010 - 15:35

Hi there,

in a recent news-story on Autosport.com[1] Mike Gascoyne mentions that he is optimistic about not beeing too far behind the established teams


I am not quite sure what he wants to say, but my guess would be that he knows or hopes that some established teams have encountered problems over the winter, hindering their development. What might these be?

One obvious case is Red Bull: The engine drama about whether or not to switch to Mercedes or even Cosworth or keeping Renault has certainly not helped designing the rear end of the car.

Even more obvious is probably the case of (BMW-)Sauber. I wouldn't be surprised to see them fall to STR's level, that is, to the back of the old teams. Unless, of course, they pull off a Brawn, as I could imagine the team switching its efforts to the 2010 car quite early on. Even though that's extremely unlikely, last winter has told us not to bet highly against it.

Then, of course, there's Renault. Having been on the verge of a pull-out, and then a half-hearted take-over certainly hasn't boosted the spirits. I can only imagine an expertise-drain, rather than the other way round (same for Sauber, though).

But what about the other teams? The Mercedes take-over of Brawn probably didn't hinder the design team to continue, McLaren would not have been distracted by all that either. As for Williams, one might consider that the Cosworth-switch isn't exactly a big step forward.

Concerning McLaren and Ferrari, I'm excited to see how their coping-strategies with their 2009-dogs plays out. McLaren tried to understand the problems of the car, putting a lot of effort into the dog, hoping to really understand the car's problem before switching to the 2010 racer. Ferrari apparently tried the other way: binning the 2009 car as early as possible and hoping that they have learned enough to build a good 2010 car.

We have talked a lot about the new teams' performances, but taking all these disruptions and strategies into account, why not talk about the old teams' relative performances?

My guess would be:

1. Mercedes: Okay, their 2009 performance was due to Honda's switching efforts early to this car and partly to the double-diffusor coup. But as they had to fight up to the last race of 2009, this probably pulled resources from the 2010 development to the 2009er. Still, I think Ross Brawn is the resource-allocation master, so his team will remain very fast. If somebody put a gun to my head, I'd bet that they will start very fast.

2. McLaren: I think trying to understand the 2009 car before switching to the 2010 design will pay off. They will be up there with Mercedes, probably tied 1st.

3. RBR: Relatively they will fall behind, not least due to their engine situation. Fighting for the 2009 title certainly has drawn resources from the 2010 car, similar to Brawn. I think there's a good chance that McLaren gets past them.

4. Ferrai: They didn't impress me in the latter part of 2009, so I would be surprised if they had a great car, knowing they had problems to understand their old one.

Behind these teams I expect a gap, with Cosworth-hindered Williams, Force India, ashes of Sauber and Renault, and STR fighting it out. Whether or not one of the new teams might challenge the old ones... I don't know!

What do you think?
a.

[1]http://www.autosport...rt.php/id/80763


I think, but I might be biased, that the Cosworth engine will be an advantage over the Toyota they had and the Cosworth could potentially be one of the best engines (they have had the advantage of starting with arguably the best engine of the 2006 season and have been free to modify it to the current regulations)

#3 f1rules

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Posted 07 January 2010 - 15:43

very good post, i agree in almost everything. I do although exspect ferrari to be up there with the frontrunners mclaren and mercedes. Red bull will fall behind. Newey had his chance. He is amazing when new rule changes are applied. Now when they are stable i exspect them to fall behind, also because of the engine uncertainty.


Hi there,

in a recent news-story on Autosport.com[1] Mike Gascoyne mentions that he is optimistic about not beeing too far behind the established teams


I am not quite sure what he wants to say, but my guess would be that he knows or hopes that some established teams have encountered problems over the winter, hindering their development. What might these be?

One obvious case is Red Bull: The engine drama about whether or not to switch to Mercedes or even Cosworth or keeping Renault has certainly not helped designing the rear end of the car.

Even more obvious is probably the case of (BMW-)Sauber. I wouldn't be surprised to see them fall to STR's level, that is, to the back of the old teams. Unless, of course, they pull off a Brawn, as I could imagine the team switching its efforts to the 2010 car quite early on. Even though that's extremely unlikely, last winter has told us not to bet highly against it.

Then, of course, there's Renault. Having been on the verge of a pull-out, and then a half-hearted take-over certainly hasn't boosted the spirits. I can only imagine an expertise-drain, rather than the other way round (same for Sauber, though).

But what about the other teams? The Mercedes take-over of Brawn probably didn't hinder the design team to continue, McLaren would not have been distracted by all that either. As for Williams, one might consider that the Cosworth-switch isn't exactly a big step forward.

Concerning McLaren and Ferrari, I'm excited to see how their coping-strategies with their 2009-dogs plays out. McLaren tried to understand the problems of the car, putting a lot of effort into the dog, hoping to really understand the car's problem before switching to the 2010 racer. Ferrari apparently tried the other way: binning the 2009 car as early as possible and hoping that they have learned enough to build a good 2010 car.

We have talked a lot about the new teams' performances, but taking all these disruptions and strategies into account, why not talk about the old teams' relative performances?

My guess would be:

1. Mercedes: Okay, their 2009 performance was due to Honda's switching efforts early to this car and partly to the double-diffusor coup. But as they had to fight up to the last race of 2009, this probably pulled resources from the 2010 development to the 2009er. Still, I think Ross Brawn is the resource-allocation master, so his team will remain very fast. If somebody put a gun to my head, I'd bet that they will start very fast.

2. McLaren: I think trying to understand the 2009 car before switching to the 2010 design will pay off. They will be up there with Mercedes, probably tied 1st.

3. RBR: Relatively they will fall behind, not least due to their engine situation. Fighting for the 2009 title certainly has drawn resources from the 2010 car, similar to Brawn. I think there's a good chance that McLaren gets past them.

4. Ferrai: They didn't impress me in the latter part of 2009, so I would be surprised if they had a great car, knowing they had problems to understand their old one.

Behind these teams I expect a gap, with Cosworth-hindered Williams, Force India, ashes of Sauber and Renault, and STR fighting it out. Whether or not one of the new teams might challenge the old ones... I don't know!

What do you think?
a.

[1]http://www.autosport...rt.php/id/80763



#4 dabrasco

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Posted 07 January 2010 - 15:57

I wont be surprised if one of the new teams is within 2 secs of the fastest car..... all the performance differentiators are getting stripped away. Except a team gets the jump on the rest with some DDD-like move, id expect another tight, circuit-dependent grid order similar to the end of last season (bar Red Bull).

If the 4 top teams are all able to produce fast, quasi-evenly matched cars.... next season will be EPIC

Edited by dabrasco, 07 January 2010 - 15:57.


#5 ferruccio

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Posted 07 January 2010 - 16:06

Agree with the points though I would still rate RBR and Newey highly but I don't know how serious their engine choice issue affected them. I think it would not have negatively affected the design of the car that much. F1 engines these days including CG are more or less similar. The only difference is probably power curve etc and since RBR sticking with Renault, they know what they've got to deal with including radiator size which affects aero design.

As for Cosworth being one of the best engines, we won't know until several races have gone past. They probably know where they are against the rest with power and fuel consumption. I think they're fairly confident but there is no telling whether it meets durability targets until they've raced the engines. So my predictions on Cosworth are conservative. No telling even for Cosworth whether their engine is offering the best 'package' for 2010 season. Don't forget they are at a disadvantage in terms of engine durability data compared to the rest


#6 Youichi

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Posted 07 January 2010 - 18:53

But what about the other teams? The Mercedes take-over of Brawn probably didn't hinder the design team to continue,

<snip>

If somebody put a gun to my head, I'd bet that they will start very fast.


But a third of the 2008 team were laid-off in 2009, and from what I hear the management-friendly types got to stay, not necessarily the best designers.

Also with 11 months of not knowing if they had a 2010 budget/buyer, how many of the good guys left for other teams ?

If someone put a gun to my head, I'd bet they have neither car on the front row at the first race.

Edited by Youichi, 07 January 2010 - 18:53.


#7 DFV

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Posted 07 January 2010 - 18:57

As for Cosworth being one of the best engines, we won't know until several races have gone past. They probably know where they are against the rest with power and fuel consumption. I think they're fairly confident but there is no telling whether it meets durability targets until they've raced the engines. So my predictions on Cosworth are conservative. No telling even for Cosworth whether their engine is offering the best 'package' for 2010 season. Don't forget they are at a disadvantage in terms of engine durability data compared to the rest


Agree with you on the reliability issue with regards to Cosworth. Even though they have done plenty of endurance running on dynos, issues when installed in the car might still appear.

#8 Timstr11

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Posted 07 January 2010 - 19:09

I am not quite sure what he wants to say, but my guess would be that he knows or hopes that some established teams have encountered problems over the winter, hindering their development. What might these be?


Gascoyne was certainly not referring to the super league teams like RedBull, Ferrari, McLaren or Mercedes.


Realistically, Lotus can only aim for best of the new teams and hope that Toro Rosso falter as they will design their own car as of this year.
The rest is unattainable for Gascoyne on the short term, I'm sure.
Lotus is a new entry AND they started very late.

Edited by Timstr11, 07 January 2010 - 19:14.


#9 noikeee

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Posted 07 January 2010 - 20:36

He's got to be talking about Sauber (dropped by BMW, only got a last minute entry, likely short on cash) and Toro Rosso (forced to design a car after some good 5 or 6 years without doing so).

#10 Owen

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Posted 07 January 2010 - 20:39

You could probably argue that Renault (formerly a true force in F1) is potentially a wounded animal now as well. Disruptive court case, loss of key senior personnel and sponsorship, buyout by new investors etc etc

#11 Lukin83

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Posted 07 January 2010 - 22:56

The guy himself pretty much answered your questions: "Now it is about where are you mid-season, where are you end of season, and I want to end the season beating Force Indias and Toro Rossos and whoever is struggling – maybe Saubers. I want to be picking them off."

#12 Lukin83

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Posted 07 January 2010 - 23:00

You could probably argue that Renault (formerly a true force in F1) is potentially a wounded animal now as well. Disruptive court case, loss of key senior personnel and sponsorship, buyout by new investors etc etc


Also: three weeks without a wind-tunnel. Although I don't believe they will fall so deep to be beaten by a new team, I'm quite sure they will be struggling. And I do hope I'm wrong on this one.