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#10951 VXT

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Posted 03 July 2011 - 02:19

According to Ferrari engineers (quoted in Italian newspaper back then) Schumacher was always half a second faster than Massa in his testing comback in 2007 (same fuel load and aero configuration etc.).

Looking at the gap between Massa and Alonso this season, you can hardly say the same applies. And this is Alonso in his prime!


Actually it does apply to Alonso. He is on average 4 tenths quicker than Massa, and unlike 2006 and 2007, Massa is now in his prime.

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#10952 MightyMoose

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Posted 03 July 2011 - 03:09

Actually it does apply to Alonso. He is on average 4 tenths quicker than Massa, and unlike 2006 and 2007, Massa is now in his prime.


You're having a laugh if you think this is the prime Massa, he's never been quite the same since Hungary 09. Very few who have the kind of head injury he did come back to the same level. He may well have exceeded his showings in 2007/8 but for the accident, but that'll be filed in the "we'll never know" section.

#10953 VXT

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Posted 03 July 2011 - 03:26

You're having a laugh if you think this is the prime Massa, he's never been quite the same since Hungary 09. Very few who have the kind of head injury he did come back to the same level. He may well have exceeded his showings in 2007/8 but for the accident, but that'll be filed in the "we'll never know" section.



Which drivers are you talking about who had the exacty same injury did not come back to their previous level??? And what makes you think he is not the same since Hungary 09? Apart from being slower than you expected against Alonso. Hakkinen had worse injuries than massa and came back to win two titles. Massa is fine and in his prime and best years as a driver.

Edited by VXT, 03 July 2011 - 03:34.


#10954 intothepits

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Posted 03 July 2011 - 03:31

It's dumb to say Massa isn't the same after his accident in 09.... He's had some solid performances since then, but let's face it....

Who on earth would be motivated when you know you are up against someone who is infact regarded as the defacto number 1 in the team, and let's not forget he's actually out performed that 'number 1' on certain occasions.

Massa just needs to leave Ferrari and get with a team that will let him race and be himself. He's still talented, and is WDC quality after 2008, he very nearly won it, and the accident hasn't really affected him that much.... More like Alonso has 'affected' Massa, let's face it.

#10955 VXT

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Posted 03 July 2011 - 03:37

It's dumb to say Massa isn't the same after his accident in 09.... He's had some solid performances since then, but let's face it....

Who on earth would be motivated when you know you are up against someone who is infact regarded as the defacto number 1 in the team, and let's not forget he's actually out performed that 'number 1' on certain occasions.

Massa just needs to leave Ferrari and get with a team that will let him race and be himself. He's still talented, and is WDC quality after 2008, he very nearly won it, and the accident hasn't really affected him that much.... More like Alonso has 'affected' Massa, let's face it.


Getting your ass kicked and having your career on the line would be great motivation. You excuse is no better than the head injury excuse. Why the need for fancy excuses? Is it that hard to accept Massa is as good as he has always been and that Alonso is simply that much better? geez. Not like Massa was driving like fangio before Hungary 2009. Give me a break. Alonso was not defacto number 1, he had to earn it by dominating Massa. You are confusing cause and effect.

Edited by VXT, 03 July 2011 - 03:38.


#10956 intothepits

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Posted 03 July 2011 - 03:44

Ha, Ferrari made it clear from day 1 that Alonso is the number 1 in the team.... It doesn't do Massa's motivation that good, why can't you accept that?

I'm not even a Massa fan... Yet it's just so clear to see...

"Alonso is faster than you.... Move over please Felipe" what else is there to say....

Basically, Ferrari are stuck in their old ways of having to have a number 1 and number 2 driver, thinking that, that will bring them back to the glory days of Schumacher/Barrichello kind of setup.... But it won't work... People will see through it, and it will also destroy the driver's moral who is to play the number 2, in this case, Massa at the moment.

Massa still has the speed to be honest, but his moral and confidence is definitely affected having Alonso as the clear number 1 in Ferrari's eyes.

Ferrari should learn to be a bit more like Red Bull.... Relax a bit... But quite clearly they don't have the car and so they are stuck in a bygone age where they think having to establish a number 1 or 2 driver is the way forward...

Well I'm sorry but we are not in the early/mid 2000s anymore and it's about time they modernize.

Massa should leave Ferrari pretty soon if he wants to salvage his career, he's still a really good driver.

#10957 VXT

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Posted 03 July 2011 - 03:51

Ha, Ferrari made it clear from day 1 that Alonso is the number 1 in the team.... It doesn't do Massa's motivation that good, why can't you accept that?


Because what your saying is not true. How did they make it clear from day 1, when Massa got more testing km's than Alonso in pre season 2010, and when they let Massa hold up Alonso in the australian gp and cost them a chance at victory, or hold him up and Malaysia? That proves they had equal treatment. Of course you are free to provide specific evidence for Alonso being number 1 from day 1.


"Alonso is faster than you.... Move over please Felipe" what else is there to say....


Ah but that happened mid season, after Alonso was already dominating, so how could that be the reason for Massa being dominated. That logic might work in the twilight zone but not here.

Basically, Ferrari are stuck in their old ways of having to have a number 1 and number 2 driver, thinking that, that will bring them back to the glory days of Schumacher/Barrichello kind of setup.... But it won't work... People will see through it, and it will also destroy the driver's moral who is to play the number 2, in this case, Massa at the moment.


No, they are just back to the old ways of having one driver much faster than the other. They are on equal terms and have equal treatment. Germany 2010 was 1 race, it does not apply to all races. Massa is allowed to beat Alonso if he is fast enough, like he did at China.






#10958 BRK

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Posted 03 July 2011 - 05:51

MS had to finish in front of Alonso every race to still have a chance for the championship back then. But they needed someone between them. Massa had to finish in front of Alonso too. So they decided to qualify Massa lighter so that he starts in font of MS. That way MS could buffer Massa to stay in front during the first stints in the race. Massa always had slow starts and was almost passed by Alonso at the starts. They knew MS would eventually get Massa anyway once te pistops came along by putting those famous fastest laps before pitting. It was the only strategy to play so that MS could catch up faster in the Championship.


Additionally, Massa also appears to have a similar driving style to Schumacher, both tend to like grippier front ends, that's why Massa was quite comfortable with the car in 2006 and was very quick. This is no longer the case (the current Ferrari drivers have different styles altogether) so I think that's part of the reason why Massa is himself not as quick as he should have been.

#10959 VXT

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Posted 03 July 2011 - 05:56

Additionally, Massa also appears to have a similar driving style to Schumacher, both tend to like grippier front ends, that's why Massa was quite comfortable with the car in 2006 and was very quick. This is no longer the case (the current Ferrari drivers have different styles altogether) so I think that's part of the reason why Massa is himself not as quick as he should have been.


wow, so the F10 was designed for Alonso prior to him even joining the team and despite Massa being the incumbent Ferrari driver for 4 years? :rotfl:

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#10960 BRK

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Posted 03 July 2011 - 05:58

wow, so the F10 was designed for Alonso prior to him even joining the team and despite Massa being the incumbent Ferrari driver for 4 years? :rotfl:


Are you saying Ferrari have not designed the car around their number 1 driver?

This isn't the Ferrari or Alonso trhead, anyway, I'm simply commenting on Schumacher\Massa in 2006.

#10961 VXT

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Posted 03 July 2011 - 05:59

Are you saying Ferrari have not designed the car around their number 1 driver?


Yep because it would have been impossible to do that before he even joined the team as you are comically suggesting.

#10962 BRK

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Posted 03 July 2011 - 06:07

Yep because it would have been impossible to do that before he even joined the team as you are comically suggesting.


Anyone with half a brain that has followed F1 for a while would know Alonso prefers a car that tends to understeer when pushed rather than over, I'm sure an actual F1 team with the pedigree of Ferrari would have known this having been in contact with their future favoured number 1 driver from 2008. :rolleyes:

Once again, this is not the Teflonso thread, you've already taken this far enough off-topic with your replies to intothepits.

#10963 Jazza

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Posted 03 July 2011 - 14:28

what was schumachers average qualifying gap to massa during the seasons they raced together? what is the average between massa and alonso? massa and raikkonen? i bet it says schumacher is atleast on par with them and not some average tard who got lucky


And have I ever suggested that he was some average tard that got lucky?



#10964 mkoscevic

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Posted 03 July 2011 - 15:12

Massa also appears to have a similar driving style to Schumacher.


Of course. Massa literally copied Schumacher's driving style back in 2006 and it worked for him.

#10965 arknor

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Posted 03 July 2011 - 15:55

And have I ever suggested that he was some average tard that got lucky?

alot of people have

#10966 Frans

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Posted 03 July 2011 - 19:47

alot of people have


and more people will.... :wave:

#10967 MightyMoose

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Posted 03 July 2011 - 21:08

and more people will.... :wave:


And those that do, will be as wrong as Neville Chamberlain waving a piece of paper & claiming "peace in our time".

#10968 Buttoneer

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Posted 03 July 2011 - 22:41

Alonso, Massa, Ferrari and tards are pretty off topic. Please discuss Schumie.

#10969 SparkPlug

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Posted 04 July 2011 - 08:53

And have I ever suggested that he was some average tard that got lucky?

For the benefit of all here, can you please clarify what exactly are you suggesting about Schumacher ? Please let us know where you think Schumacher stands and what his fans (and additionaly who among them) have been suggesting to the contrary.


#10970 Buttoneer

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Posted 04 July 2011 - 11:22

SparkPlug, Jazza has been pretty clear. If you go to the RC forum page, click on the number of posts against the thread title, and in the small pop-up that appears look for Jazza and click on the number of posts he's made. The result will be a page comprising only his posts in the thread. Read through them and it ought to answer your questions.

#10971 ivand911

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Posted 04 July 2011 - 16:47

Schumi's Sekret Tageblog: Petrov
http://www.planetf1....Tageblog-Petrov
:p

#10972 Ferrari_F1_fan_2001

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Posted 04 July 2011 - 18:36

Which drivers are you talking about who had the exacty same injury did not come back to their previous level??? And what makes you think he is not the same since Hungary 09? Apart from being slower than you expected against Alonso. Hakkinen had worse injuries than massa and came back to win two titles. Massa is fine and in his prime and best years as a driver.


Massa is - theoretically - in his prime. There's nothing quantifiable, psychological or qualitative to suggest that he is however other than speculation based on age and supposition.

He is a driver that performs at his best when he is 'comfortable' mentally but not when there is a lot of psychological and constant pressure. In his Ferrari 2008 campaign, he had a lot of pressure but the full weight of the team behind him. Mentally that propelled him. Now, that luxury has disappeared and he is at sea, it would appear, most of the time.

#10973 differential

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Posted 04 July 2011 - 18:40

Massa is - theoretically - in his prime. There's nothing quantifiable, psychological or qualitative to suggest that he is however other than speculation based on age and supposition.

He is a driver that performs at his best when he is 'comfortable' mentally but not when there is a lot of psychological and constant pressure. In his Ferrari 2008 campaign, he had a lot of pressure but the full weight of the team behind him. Mentally that propelled him. Now, that luxury has disappeared and he is at sea, it would appear, most of the time.

:up:

#10974 britishtrident

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 06:45

Massa is - theoretically - in his prime. There's nothing quantifiable, psychological or qualitative to suggest that he is however other than speculation based on age and supposition.

He is a driver that performs at his best when he is 'comfortable' mentally but not when there is a lot of psychological and constant pressure. In his Ferrari 2008 campaign, he had a lot of pressure but the full weight of the team behind him. Mentally that propelled him. Now, that luxury has disappeared and he is at sea, it would appear, most of the time.


Yes he is the best journeyman driver in F1.

Remember in 2008 he had full membership of Ferrari International Assistance but it didn't do him any good..

#10975 Sakae

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 11:14

Massa is - theoretically - in his prime. There's nothing quantifiable, psychological or qualitative to suggest that he is however other than speculation based on age and supposition.

He is a driver that performs at his best when he is 'comfortable' mentally but not when there is a lot of psychological and constant pressure. In his Ferrari 2008 campaign, he had a lot of pressure but the full weight of the team behind him. Mentally that propelled him. Now, that luxury has disappeared and he is at sea, it would appear, most of the time.

Two events affected his mental disposition more than anything else; spring-related accident. I really do not think that he is fully recovered, and second one - realization that Alonso replaced Michael, and his chances ever being No. 1 at Ferrari are non-existent. I do not wish to read tea leafs, but I really suspect it demorilized him a lot. The vitality we have seen in early years is gone; at least I can't see it anymore in him.

Edited by Sakae, 05 July 2011 - 11:15.


#10976 One

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 11:19

Two events affected his mental disposition more than anything else; spring-related accident. I really do not think that he is fully recovered, and second one - realization that Alonso replaced Michael, and his chances ever being No. 1 at Ferrari are non-existent. I do not wish to read tea leafs, but I really suspect it demorilized him a lot. The vitality we have seen in early years is gone; at least I can't see it anymore in him.


If so, Michael needs to clean his mind up. It is not his business about who to become the Ferrari's No.1 Driver. He is a driver and the management decides, period.

#10977 spa08

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 12:04

Are you saying Ferrari have not designed the car around their number 1 driver?

This isn't the Ferrari or Alonso trhead, anyway, I'm simply commenting on Schumacher\Massa in 2006.


So your basically saying Ferrari designed Schumachers title winning cars around him. No wonder the likes of Irvine, barrichello and massa had no real hope of beating him. In 2010 in a neutral car that neither rosberg or schumacher liked, rosberg nearly scored the double amount of points that Michael achieved.

#10978 MikeTekRacing

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 14:00

So your basically saying Ferrari designed Schumachers title winning cars around him. No wonder the likes of Irvine, barrichello and massa had no real hope of beating him. In 2010 in a neutral car that neither rosberg or schumacher liked, rosberg nearly scored the double amount of points that Michael achieved.

A 41 year old version after 3 years of retirement

#10979 weston

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 14:08

If so, Michael needs to clean his mind up. It is not his business about who to become the Ferrari's No.1 Driver. He is a driver and the management decides, period.


Michael? Did you mean Felipe?

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#10980 MightyMoose

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 14:12

So your basically saying Ferrari designed Schumachers title winning cars around him. No wonder the likes of Irvine, barrichello and massa had no real hope of beating him. In 2010 in a neutral car that neither rosberg or schumacher liked, rosberg nearly scored the double amount of points that Michael achieved.


1st post and you come in and spout this. Plus your username is guaranteed to make sensible people roll their eyes. There's no hidden agenda behind that is there?

MS clearly worked with Ferrari & Bridgestone to get the ideal combination of car & tyre. Then he put his skill to use in giving it the best he could. Is that the sign of a bad driver or someone who maxed out his potential to win? No doubt you'll believe RB could have beaten MS every week had he had the chance...... and blame Austria 02, despite MS gifting him 3 wins later that season (for some reason RB never mentions that fact in his many whines).

Your comment about the "neutral" MERC is incorrect as most qualified people say it was just about as far removed from a MS-preferred car as could be, plus as Mike says, he was retired for 3 years! Year 2 and the MERC is coming around and believe me, NR is learning plenty from MS, despite having an edge in 1 lap pace his race mind leaves plenty of room to improve. Not bad for the oldest driver since god knows when!


#10981 spa08

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 14:55

There are mixed opinions in the racing world wether michael as lost his speed. Nobody really does know if his teamates were given the full opportunities to challenge Michael. We don't know If lastyears car suited nico more than Michael, what we do know is that nico as shown to be the quicker of the two. Canada showed some of the old magic, but I feel those performances will be rare from him

Edited by spa08, 05 July 2011 - 14:57.


#10982 ivand911

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 15:31

There are mixed opinions in the racing world wether michael as lost his speed. Nobody really does know if his teamates were given the full opportunities to challenge Michael. We don't know If lastyears car suited nico more than Michael, what we do know is that nico as shown to be the quicker of the two. Canada showed some of the old magic, but I feel those performances will be rare from him

Did you follow last year? Not, that NR was given the full opportunity, in some races team improved his chances in WDC for Michael expense. In Brazil MS leave Nico to pass him twice to finish ahead. And many more examples for better strategy for Nico. About last year car I am sure Williams 2009 car was closer to W01 than Ferrari 2006. Tyres also.


#10983 Group B

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 15:39

There are mixed opinions in the racing world wether michael as lost his speed. Nobody really does know if his teamates were given the full opportunities to challenge Michael. We don't know If lastyears car suited nico more than Michael, what we do know is that nico as shown to be the quicker of the two. Canada showed some of the old magic, but I feel those performances will be rare from him

Frankly I think MS was already losing some speed back in 2005 or 2006; another 5 years has seen him lose a bit more. I'd be amazed if he's not at least ½ second slower than 10 years ago, and probably nearer a second off his 1993-2002 peak decade.

That spell in Canada was wonderful, just like old times, but as you say I think it won't happen too often.

#10984 ivand911

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 15:47

Frankly I think MS was already losing some speed back in 2005 or 2006; another 5 years has seen him lose a bit more. I'd be amazed if he's not at least ½ second slower than 10 years ago, and probably nearer a second off his 1993-2002 peak decade.

That spell in Canada was wonderful, just like old times, but as you say I think it won't happen too often.

He don't have car to do such things often.


#10985 sosidge

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 15:56

He don't have car to do such things often.


And if he was in the Red Bull, McLaren or Ferrari, what do you suppose he would be doing?

I guarantee he wouldn't be beating Vettel, Hamilton or Alonso.

Please, please acknowledge that MS v2 has been soundly beaten by Rosberg. The conspiracy theories do not explain his performances over the last 18 months, and Michael has been personally responsible for many of his most embrassing incidents.

There is no shame in recognising that MS age 41 is not as fast as MS age 26, 31 or even 36. It does not mean that the records set by MS v1 are removed from the statistics.

MS v1 got the results (and punishments) he deserved. So has MS v2. It's just that the results are not as good, because he is not as good. Learn to accept that.

#10986 ivand911

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 16:13

And if he was in the Red Bull, McLaren or Ferrari, what do you suppose he would be doing?

I guarantee he wouldn't be beating Vettel, Hamilton or Alonso.

Please, please acknowledge that MS v2 has been soundly beaten by Rosberg. The conspiracy theories do not explain his performances over the last 18 months, and Michael has been personally responsible for many of his most embrassing incidents.

There is no shame in recognising that MS age 41 is not as fast as MS age 26, 31 or even 36. It does not mean that the records set by MS v1 are removed from the statistics.

MS v1 got the results (and punishments) he deserved. So has MS v2. It's just that the results are not as good, because he is not as good. Learn to accept that.

I wouldn't bet my house on that. Would you?


#10987 Pits

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 16:28

I seems to me that Schumacher is getting a little stronger every race. Which isn't strange after a long sabatical he's had. He has worked himself up to an equal level as Rosberg, which he wasn't last year. I feel there is still more to come from Schumacher, but the car has got to improve a lot.

#10988 ivand911

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 16:45

But from the rosberg v schumacher thread

So Rosberg is nothing special because he's beating some 'knackered old has-been' but he's a 'knackered old has-been' that can beat the finest drivers on the grid?

Little inconsistent don't you think? if schumacher could really beat hamilton et al in a fair fight then rosberg must be the talent of the decade.

Why you quote EdwardCullen?


#10989 Kubiccia

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 17:59

Current Schumi wouldn't beat the current top guns. I rate Nico as an average/good driver and Michael is only matching him on qualifyings nowadays. Let's see if Schumi can keep it up on this next qualifying. Unfortunately, I think Nico will beat him by a bigger margin in this qualifying because the G-forces are over 5 in at least 4 corners and that will affect Michael much more than anybody else.

If you look closely, the old guys are being beaten on regular basis by the newbies and the most notable example is Kova/Trulli. Even Barrichello is starting to be beating oftenly by a rookie in the qualifyings.


Don't expect too much from Michael people, Canada was a one-off, a glimpse of his previous form.

#10990 Boing 2

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 18:09

Why you quote EdwardCullen?


sorry, my mistake :drunk:

#10991 ivand911

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 19:12

Don't expect too much from Michael people, Canada was a one-off, a glimpse of his previous form.

What to expect from 4th best car? Not much. Only if you are lucky. This is what happen with the guys who have 4th best car.


#10992 Ferrari_F1_fan_2001

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 20:22

We have seen from both Merc drivers that, in qualifying at least, they're getting the most out of their cars. The car cannot be any faster and in reality there is very little to seperate the two.

Infact, I'd argue that the gap between the Mclaren, Ferrari and Red Bull drivers is arguably bigger this year compared to the Merc drivers. Indeed, even in terms of points and results both MS and NR are closer than everyone else too.

PS - It has been one year this weekend since Mercedes' last podium. The car has not been podium worthy for the last 12 months. That is the most shocking statistic of them all......

Edited by Ferrari_F1_fan_2001, 05 July 2011 - 20:24.


#10993 merschu

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 20:44

Peter Windsor's interview with Ross Brawn about Michael Schumacher


Interview: Ross Brawn – ‘Nothing Ever Stays The Same…’

July 5, 2011 – There was a moment, in the early 2000s, when the Ross Brawn-Michael Schumacher partnership seemed as permanent as the Ferrari name itself. Colin Chapman/Jim Clark? Ken Tyrrell/Jackie Stewart? They paled into the background. Ross and Michael re-wrote the record book, albeit in a safer, more prolific era of Formula One.

Then – suddenly – it ended. Ross Brawn decided he’d had enough. Michael followed suit. It was all over. A new age would dawn. The face of F1 would change.

Forever.

Now, five years after Ross Brawn decided to retire from his career at Ferrari, it’s almost as if those older, Maranello times were but a dream. The same Ross is working with the same Michael….but the main goal now is to make Q3 – and then, perchance, the podium. Nothing stays the same; everybody knows that. No-one back in the early 2000s, though, would ever have predicted that it would develop in the way it has – that it would all result in a 42-year-old Michael working with a Team Principal called Ross Brawn, within a team re-born as Mercedes and a in car that is significantly inferior to a Ferrari and a McLaren, let alone a Red Bull-Renault.

I chatted to Ross on the eve of this year’s Canadian Grand Prix. Michael would run strongly in the race the following day. He would slice his way up to a strong second place; he would prove that the pace and the fire are still there, even if eventually Michael would give best to Jenson Button’s McLaren-Mercedes and to Mark Webber’s DRS-assisted Red Bull. It would provide justification, indeed, for much of what Ross had to say when we chatted in his back office, adjacent to his engineers’ meeting room.

I began by asking Ross how he felt in those Ferrari days. Was a “retirement” always planned?

“I think you know that nothing ever stays the same,” he replied, “and that everything is going to have a shelf-life. So I set myself an arbitrary ten years, and when it started to approach ten years I thought ‘this is a good time to stop’. There was no massive logic to it all. I joined Ferrari on a three-year contract because I figured that over three years I would know if they liked me or I liked them, and whether it would all work, and as life went on it got extended and extended. What I really wanted to avoid – which would have been dreadful – was a decline of all our fortunes at Ferrari and it ending a little bit sour. As it happened, I was able to leave with everybody’s head still held quite high and with lot of friends still in Italy. I speak often to Luca Montezemolo and to Stefano Domenicali – all people with whom I can have a friendly and easy chat and relationship with. Was it too soon? Who knows. For me, it worked out perfectly. I went off and had a sabbatical for a year, and got some things out of my system that I wanted to do, and then came back again.”

Ross’s love of fishing is legendary – but by how much during that sabbatical did he deplete the oceans and rivers of the world? What did he do exactly?

“I was sure that I needed a year away to reflect on everything, to list the things that I enjoyed about F1 and to identify the things that were perhaps not so much fun. The object was to achieve a decent balance. And there were things I wanted to do that I knew I wouldn’t be able to do once I got a lot older. My wife and I did a lot of touring. We travel all over the world in F1 but we never see anything; we spent several weeks in Argentina, which is always a place I enjoyed – in Buenos Aires and Terra del Fuego, where, yes, I did some fishing. My wife wanted to go on Safari – so we did that, too. It was a great year – but I still felt there were things I wanted to do in F1. I wanted to get up in the morning and have a project, something with which I could be involved. That’s why I came back.”

Which seemed a good moment to raise the subject of Michael’s comeback. Many have been outspoken in their criticism of Michael’s return. Ross’s take?

“I think Michael had been at it for a very long time. And you do get tired. You do get tired of all the pressures, of all the things that you can’t do. He had a young family. And you do get weary, even though it is a fantastic life and the rewards are fantastic if you do well. I don’t know whether my decision to stop made him reflect. Maybe he was jealous of all the things I was going to go off and do, because, you know, he had a great three years in retirement, doing lots of things that he would never had done in the world of F1. He did the same as I did. He looked at what he enjoyed about F1, he tried to maximize those things and tried to handle the tiresome side –the constant travel and focus and attention.”


So who made the first approach? Ross or Michael himself?

“It evolved quite slowly,” remembers Ross. “I saw him at the end of 2009. It was one of the last races. We had a good beer together, a good session – and we did a lot of reminiscing – a comparison of the notes of life. He talked a lot about his horses, and breeding horses, and Mick, his son who is karting, and I’ve got some grandchildren now, so we talked about kids, too. There are always some old stories that come out but we didn’t make a specific commitment to do anything because, quite frankly, at that stage I thought we were going to keep Jenson at what was going to be Mercedes. It was only when things looked as though they wouldn’t happen with Jenson – I was on holiday in Mauritius when Jenson made that infamous visit to McLaren – that we said, well, what do we do? I rang Michael, spoke to him, explained the situation and said ‘If you’re interested we can talk’. He wanted a few days to reflect on it and then we started again from there.”


What sort of Michael Schumacher did he begin to work with, I wondered?

“The whole thing was a little bit different because my role at Mercedes is different from that at Ferrari. At Ferrari it was a very technical-based role – I was Technical Director – but at Mercedes I am in a general Team Principal role. At Ferrari I would never deal with the drivers’ specific issues, problems, contracts and so forth. I would be asked my opinion but I didn’t deal with them first hand. Here, with Nick Fry, I have to deal with that side. So my professional relationship is different – and our relationship reflects that difference.

“What there is, is trust,” continued Ross thoughtfully. “There’s trust between the people I know. I trust Michael with the things he tells me about the car. And he trusts me with the things that help him to understand the team. That trust is pretty consistent and I don’t think either of us would do anything consciously to damage that trust. That’s something that has been born over many years. I’m proud to say that I believe that I have the trust of Michael and I certainly trust him. Possibly as a team where we’ve had a bit of a void is that no-one has stepped into those shoes for ‘me’ in this team and therefore there’s been a bit of a void in that area. Now Bob Bell has joined us as Technical Director and he is filling that void.”


And now the touchy subject: I suggest to Ross that there was/is a public perception that he and Michael together couldn’t have produced anything other than a great car. That, after all, is what the Ross/Michael relationship used to be all about….

“I understand that perception,” replied Ross, “but the reality is that cars are born 12, 18 months before you see them. The car we ran last year was conceived long before Michael joined us. Trying to win the Championship in 09 with a pretty slimmed-down team didn’t leave a lot to spare for the build of a good car for 2010. I think our 2011 car is not bad. It’s the first car designed by John Owen, our new Chief Designer; it’s the first complete car he’s designed. So I think it’s pretty impressive but it’s not where we want to be. John’s next car will for sure be a lot better. So we’re a team in transition but a team that for me is transitioning in a very upward direction. And Michael is helping us achieve that, helping us build the team.

“Michael is very involved with visiting the factory, with working with the engineers, with helping them understand where we’ve got to focus. And because he’s got such charisma everyone listens! Nico Rosberg is also very effective in this role but of course Michael is this iconic character and when he comes to the factory people listen. He does present things in a way that forces people to challenge him. He doesn’t just want to say ‘do this, this and this’; he wants people to challenge him and to understand why. It’s rare for him to say ‘look, you must change this because I think it will solve the problem’. He presents the problem and then debates with the engineers about how the problem could be solved. He doesn’t have many pre-conceived ideas about how things should be. He has a good, open mind. He provokes debate, provokes discussion. He’s very good in this respect.”


“Pretty good” may yet stand as the understatement of the year. Even so, I also asked Ross how Michael has handled the speed of Nico – how he has reacted to Nico’s usual advantage of 0.2-0.3sec per lap. And why is this so? What does it mean? I’m one of those people who loves watching great racing drivers work their way out of a trough. I don’t condemn Michael for returning; I enjoy the detail of how he is attempting to maximize his situation, given Nico’s speed, those 42 years and the car’s obvious limitations. How, though, does Ross see it?

“First, Nico is doing a fantastic job,” he replies. “He’s set a very high reference for Michael to match and beat. And we’ve not done a great car this year, as I say. We’re struggling a bit with the rear tyres, we’re struggling with rear tyre consistency, we’re having to look at how we set the car up to look after that situation. Whether this moves more towards Michael than Nico – or vice versa – I don’t know. The car is far from ideal but I think now we understand the Pirellis; we understand certain things about where we are so we should be able to make strong progress in that area for next year.

“One of the things I’ve been conscious of is not having the polarity of Ross/Michael in the team. I’ve tried to have as balanced an approach as I can. Nico was very concerned when he heard Michael was coming into the team, because we do have a long history and we have had a lot of success in the past. I spent quite a lot of time with Nico, explaining why we would have a balanced approach and at the end of the day it is your actions not your words that demonstrate how you’re going to run a team. Nico has relaxed enormously now that he sees how we run it. I think Nico at any moment would say that he’s able to make a contribution, that he’s listened-to, that he has exactly the same equipment. There’s no alignment in any way towards Michael.

“Where Michael has helped is with his very professional, very experienced approach. Nico is a smart guy. He looks at it. He learns. He quietly watches what goes on. And I’m sure it rubs off on him. And I’m sure that Michael has learned from Nico, too, so it’s not just one-way traffic.”


I persist: why the speed differential? From where does it mostly come?

“That’s a very good question!” says Ross ruefully. “Michael pores over the data trying work out where Nico’s speed comes from. They both apex the corner at similar speeds, so it’s the way you enter and exit that chips away at those hundredths of a second that accumulate into a gain. You couldn’t pick a spot or an aspect of a corner and say ‘Nico brakes better than Michael’ or is ‘better in traction’; he just puts a corner together a little bit better than Michael in terms of braking and turning-in. And that’s a reflection on how good Nico is. He has progressed over the last few years. The reason we asked him to join the team is that we were all impressed with him at Williams but he was a little less consistent there at times. But here he has been really consistent and has fitted in well.”

Which begs the question of the man who knows him best: is Michael as quick as he was?

“I don’t know, to be honest. You lose your references. What I do know is that we haven’t produced the car that we had back in the Ferrari days – the type of cars we had back then. When we get the car we should have, when we get the competitive car, maybe that will change the performance differentials that sometimes exist between Michael and Nico. I don’t know. I don’t know where our reference is. What you know you have to achieve is a car that is good enough to win races. That’s the critical point.”

And a point well-made. We’ll see if Michael is still a winning driver when he drives again a winning car. Until then, he is working at it – with Ross; until then, the most successful partnership in the history of F1 is alive, working hard – and still full of hope and trust.


I finish by asking Ross about his feelings about F1. Sabatical over, will he become a latter-day Sir Frank Williams, eating, sleeping and drinking his F1 life until the end of time?

“Well, I’m still going to take holidays! I’m not quite as addicted as Frank as to motor racing. Frank was in many ways unlucky with his accident but in many ways lucky with his passion for motor racing. That for sure has kept him going. I have massive admiration for Frank for all sorts of reasons, not the least of which is that he gave me my first break in motor racing. I’m not as addicted to motor racing as Frank and I do take breaks when I can, and spend some time with my family. Which for me I need to do in order to keep that enthusiasm going and the desire to carry on. It is swinging your legs out of bed in the morning and wanting to go to work and as long as I want to do that then I’ll continue doing it. There may come a day when I think, ‘actually, I’m not doing as good a job as I want to because my enthusiasm has ebbed’. And strangely enough, when you’re in a position like we are this year, when we’re not good enough – that is when I seem to get most of my enthusiasm. When you’re there, winning races, then it almost looks a bit too easy. It’s great. You’re getting rewards for your hard work but somehow it doesn’t quite drive you. My decision to stop at Ferrari was made at the peak of our successes. And I certainly won’t walk away from our team until we have achieved our ambitions. And then I’ll step back and reflect.

“We’ve kept the house in Italy and we very much enjoy our time in Italy. My wife and family go over there more often than I am able to but Italians still remain incredibly friendly.“But England is my home and, particularly now that my wife and I have grandchildren, it makes it even more of a magnetic attraction.”



http://www.theracedr...stays-the-same/

#10994 ivand911

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 20:58

Peter Windsor's interview with Ross Brawn about Michael Schumacher
http://www.theracedr...stays-the-same/

Good interview. :up:


#10995 Pits

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 21:04

Peter Windsor's interview with Ross Brawn about Michael Schumacher


Veri nice interview, I like the part about trusting each other's skills and commitment. :)

#10996 weston

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 22:00

Peter Windsor's interview with Ross Brawn about Michael Schumacher

http://www.theracedr...stays-the-same/


Thanks for the link. Great article.

#10997 MikeTekRacing

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 22:26

And if he was in the Red Bull, McLaren or Ferrari, what do you suppose he would be doing?

I guarantee he wouldn't be beating Vettel, Hamilton or Alonso.

neither are Webber, Button or Massa

Webber and Massa are embarrassingly slower sometimes

#10998 BRK

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Posted 06 July 2011 - 07:40

Great interview, thanks for posting, merschu! That's one of the things I've always admired about Michael, his dispassionate, logical approach and knowing just the right thing to say at the right moment -it's a pleasure working with intelligent, open-minded people that know exactly what they're talking about and from that interview it looks as though nothing has changed in years between Ross and Michael or their working relationship. Good stuff.

#10999 tifosiMac

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Posted 06 July 2011 - 08:08

A great interview and it certainly puts a few things into perspective for many I think. I hope Mercedes get it right for next season in terms of the car as I still would like to see Michael challenging at the front with Nico, Lewis, Seb, Fernando, and Button.

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#11000 ali.unal

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Posted 06 July 2011 - 08:20

I get the impression (always do) that Michael will sort out its 0,2s deficit to Nico if he has a winning car, which may mean that Michael is looking for a motivation for the win, not the car itself. Deficit to Nico might down to psychological.