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Track Observations for Winter 2012 testing


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#51 korzeniow

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 17:44

Its a shame he's underestimating Grosjean. He might well prove to be the benchmark for the team.


Well, it seems Grosjean is yet to earn his respect.

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#52 OSX

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 17:48

Didn´t Kimi drive two days this week? :confused:

The times got faster with more rubber on the track.


#53 PayasYouRace

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 17:59

Thanks - and have a great day!


I did thanks. I haven't seen F1 cars on track "for real" since 2004 and forgot how much I love the sound, smell and colour. Here are my thoughts on today. I haven't read anyone else's yet as I don't want to influence my own thoughts.

My Day At The Track
First of all I'd like to say how good Jerez is for watching F1 cars in action. The track is quite small so you can see a fair bit of it, and you can get fairly close to the track in places. My group and I started the morning in the main stands opposite the pits. That was good for seeing who was doing what, but hard to tell how the cars were behaving. We briefly checked out the cheap seats behind the paddock, but you end up quite far away from the track and the sun is in your eyes the whole time. After having lunch in the main stands we spent the afternoon in the "car park" area between the backstraight and the final corner. Apparently it wasn't open on the other days of the test but it offered the best views. With the sun behind it was good for taking pictures.

Red Bull
Vettel didn't emerge from the pits until the afternoon. The car seemed like it was on rails though. It never looked like he was having to explore the limit. In the difficult braking zone at the last corner the car looked smooth as silk. Acceleration from the final corner seemed clean and early. The Red Bull's exhaust gives the engine a lovely warbling sound under acceleration.

McLaren
Hamilton looked like he was hustling the car a lot. He was locking the brakes a lot. In the final braking zone we saw some spectacular on-the-limit braking, with the car doing the turning on entry and Lewis just keeping it pointing the right way. Some sideways moments on exit too. The McLaren also seemed very good over the kerbs at the chicane. On his later runs in the afternoon he had his rain light on. I'm not sure what that was about. By the way the red on the McLaren is much brighter than photos or TV will ever be able to re-create - a must see.

Ferrari
I can't really comment on them because we arrived after Alonso's fast run of the morning. We only saw him briefly when he attempted runs in the afternoon but never seemed to be going fast. I guess that's down to the hydraulic issue. The Ferrari is ugly.

Lotus
Grosjean seemed to be able to get a lot of running in. The car seemed a bit unstable under braking. Romain had a few moments entering the last corner, including one very big wobble one time. The car's sound has a deep, throaty roar to it which makes it quite different to the other Renault powered machines.

Force India
There was little to say about the FI. The Hulk was clearly pushing. He was the only one I saw using the kerbs all the way between turns 7 and 8 and was often all the way on the kerb at the exit of the final corner, sometimes using some grass too. But the car looked in control, for the most part.

Sauber
The thing that impressed me about the Sauber was its turn-in, especially to the chicane. It didn't seem to good in the traction zones though. After it broke down in the afternoon Kobayashi only came out briefly.

Toro Rosso
Very much like the Red Bull, but we saw more of it. The car seemed smooth and stable for the most part. A bit hard over the kerbs at the chicane, and some wilder moments at the final corner. The latter might be due to a Vergne's lack of experience. The car also seemed to make a noticeable banging noise during the upshifts.

Williams
As a Williams fans I took a bit more notice of whenever Senna was on track. Also we happened to be in a good place to see their pit board so we could tell when they were doing long runs. The car looked stable, though a bit twitchy on the power. Williams appeared to be doing a race simulation before the car broke down the first time. It included a racing pit-stop so the car must have had a heavy fuel load on board. It seemed to handle well when heavy. After the car broke down we saw Senna briefly on the pit wall and the crowd gave him a cheer. Reliability must be a worry though because the car stopped again at T1 when we were leaving the track.

Caterham
Trulli seemed to have problems getting anywhere near the apex of the final turn. I don't know if this was due to a braking problem or what but I could have sat at the apex of the turn and he wouldn't have got near me. This was the loudest of the Renaults.

Round-up
To be honest it's been a long time since I've seen F1 cars up close so I'm not used to analysing their behaviour. I went to the track to have a fun day out and did so. I'd recommend attending a test to just experience F1 "on the cheap". It's about stimulating the senses. I can't really draw much info about who will be good and who won't, so the above is just what I noticed during my time at the track. I'll post some pictures soon.

#54 gillesthegenius

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 18:11

I did thanks. I haven't seen F1 cars on track "for real" since 2004 and forgot how much I love the sound, smell and colour. Here are my thoughts on today. I haven't read anyone else's yet as I don't want to influence my own thoughts.

My Day At The Track
First of all I'd like to say how good Jerez is for watching F1 cars in action. The track is quite small so you can see a fair bit of it, and you can get fairly close to the track in places. My group and I started the morning in the main stands opposite the pits. That was good for seeing who was doing what, but hard to tell how the cars were behaving. We briefly checked out the cheap seats behind the paddock, but you end up quite far away from the track and the sun is in your eyes the whole time. After having lunch in the main stands we spent the afternoon in the "car park" area between the backstraight and the final corner. Apparently it wasn't open on the other days of the test but it offered the best views. With the sun behind it was good for taking pictures.

Red Bull
Vettel didn't emerge from the pits until the afternoon. The car seemed like it was on rails though. It never looked like he was having to explore the limit. In the difficult braking zone at the last corner the car looked smooth as silk. Acceleration from the final corner seemed clean and early. The Red Bull's exhaust gives the engine a lovely warbling sound under acceleration.

McLaren
Hamilton looked like he was hustling the car a lot. He was locking the brakes a lot. In the final braking zone we saw some spectacular on-the-limit braking, with the car doing the turning on entry and Lewis just keeping it pointing the right way. Some sideways moments on exit too. The McLaren also seemed very good over the kerbs at the chicane. On his later runs in the afternoon he had his rain light on. I'm not sure what that was about. By the way the red on the McLaren is much brighter than photos or TV will ever be able to re-create - a must see.

Ferrari
I can't really comment on them because we arrived after Alonso's fast run of the morning. We only saw him briefly when he attempted runs in the afternoon but never seemed to be going fast. I guess that's down to the hydraulic issue. The Ferrari is ugly.

Lotus
Grosjean seemed to be able to get a lot of running in. The car seemed a bit unstable under braking. Romain had a few moments entering the last corner, including one very big wobble one time. The car's sound has a deep, throaty roar to it which makes it quite different to the other Renault powered machines.

Force India
There was little to say about the FI. The Hulk was clearly pushing. He was the only one I saw using the kerbs all the way between turns 7 and 8 and was often all the way on the kerb at the exit of the final corner, sometimes using some grass too. But the car looked in control, for the most part.

Sauber
The thing that impressed me about the Sauber was its turn-in, especially to the chicane. It didn't seem to good in the traction zones though. After it broke down in the afternoon Kobayashi only came out briefly.

Toro Rosso
Very much like the Red Bull, but we saw more of it. The car seemed smooth and stable for the most part. A bit hard over the kerbs at the chicane, and some wilder moments at the final corner. The latter might be due to a Vergne's lack of experience. The car also seemed to make a noticeable banging noise during the upshifts.

Williams
As a Williams fans I took a bit more notice of whenever Senna was on track. Also we happened to be in a good place to see their pit board so we could tell when they were doing long runs. The car looked stable, though a bit twitchy on the power. Williams appeared to be doing a race simulation before the car broke down the first time. It included a racing pit-stop so the car must have had a heavy fuel load on board. It seemed to handle well when heavy. After the car broke down we saw Senna briefly on the pit wall and the crowd gave him a cheer. Reliability must be a worry though because the car stopped again at T1 when we were leaving the track.

Caterham
Trulli seemed to have problems getting anywhere near the apex of the final turn. I don't know if this was due to a braking problem or what but I could have sat at the apex of the turn and he wouldn't have got near me. This was the loudest of the Renaults.

Round-up
To be honest it's been a long time since I've seen F1 cars up close so I'm not used to analysing their behaviour. I went to the track to have a fun day out and did so. I'd recommend attending a test to just experience F1 "on the cheap". It's about stimulating the senses. I can't really draw much info about who will be good and who won't, so the above is just what I noticed during my time at the track. I'll post some pictures soon.


Awesome stuff! :up: :up: :up:
Thanks. :)

#55 gillesthegenius

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 18:33

BBC F1 technical analyst Gary Anderson:

Testing is always hard to read, but my impression so far is that the the order at the top has not changed, with Red Bull, McLaren and Ferrari. But Lotus and Toro Rosso are both doing a good job and it looks like the midfield teams have closed up on the big three a little, and among themselves. Williams, in particular, appear to be back on the right track, judging by Bruno Senna's race simulation run on Friday. That could make for a good season - it keeps the top teams on their toes as they know that the smallest slip-up and they'll be behind other cars.



#56 IceSkyrim

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 18:57

Mark Webber:

"If Grosjean can do those laptimes then we will all have to watch Kimi (Raikkonen)."

I can understand him, after all people said...

"If Grosjean Webber can do those laptimes then we will all have to watch Kimi Vettel."


#57 korzeniow

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 19:00

BBC F1 technical analyst Gary Anderson:


So he concludes Ferrari were among the best teams at those 4 days tests?

#58 Stormsky68

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 19:05

So he concludes Ferrari were among the best teams at those 4 days tests?


Thats why he's not a technical director anymore

#59 bauss

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 19:16

Thats why he's not a technical director anymore



ouch :rotfl: :rotfl:

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#60 OSX

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 19:18

So he concludes Ferrari were among the best teams at those 4 days tests?

It's clearly a bet rather than a conclusion.



#61 Darth Sidious

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 19:56

Its a shame he's underestimating Grosjean. He might well prove to be the benchmark for the team.


Definitely. With all due respect to Kimi I am looking forward to Grosjean living up to the promise he showed on his way to F1. Hopefully a comment like that will help spur the kid on to prove Webber wrong.


#62 Pezerinno

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 22:33

Just a suggestion: why dont you format the 1st post like this:

Red Bull
"bla bla bla" DanardiF1 on 08/02/2012
"bla bla bla" Atec Atoc on 09/02/2012

McLaren
"bla bla bla" DanardiF1 on 08/02/2012


Etc.

I know it will give you some work, but it's just a suggestion ;)


You are Rubens and I claim my five pounds.

Thanks for the track reports.

#63 Tiakumosan

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 01:18

You are Rubens and I claim my five pounds.

Thanks for the track reports.


:confused: :confused: :confused:

#64 showtime

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 01:36

:confused: :confused: :confused:


bla bla bla :lol:

#65 OO7

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 01:40

You are Rubens and I claim my five pounds.

Thanks for the track reports.

I read that a few hours ago and it didn't click until reading showtime's post for some reason. :lol:

#66 ArtShelley

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 06:17

Mark Webber:

"If Grosjean can do those laptimes then we will all have to watch Kimi (Raikkonen)."

http://www.f1zone.ne...2012-car/12194/


Mark really should stop underestimating rookies/newbies. I would have thought that he'd have learned his lesson after being beaten 3 seasons in a row by his "these kids" team mate. Each beating being worse than the one before.

#67 ArtShelley

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 06:19

McLaren
Hamilton looked like he was hustling the car a lot. He was locking the brakes a lot. In the final braking zone we saw some spectacular on-the-limit braking, with the car doing the turning on entry and Lewis just keeping it pointing the right way. Some sideways moments on exit too. The McLaren also seemed very good over the kerbs at the chicane. On his later runs in the afternoon he had his rain light on. I'm not sure what that was about. By the way the red on the McLaren is much brighter than photos or TV will ever be able to re-create - a must see.


That's the Lewis I remember, though unsure how the rear tyres will fare after too many of those kind of laps.

#68 ViMaMo

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 09:38

Thanks for the change in title mods :wave:

#69 TeamSideways

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 09:47

i cant understand how people account for the tests , barrichello got 1st place in jerez test day 4 !!!

#70 korzeniow

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 09:55

i cant understand how people account for the tests , barrichello got 1st place in jerez test day 4 !!!


Well it depends what times you takie into consideration. Last year's Barichello time was glory run. As well as Thursday's Rosberg's time.

#71 Ferrari2183

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 10:10

i cant understand how people account for the tests , barrichello got 1st place in jerez test day 4 !!!

Having people report back with the behaviour of the cars gives you an idea as to who will be performing although it is not the be all and end all. That said, I've seen many a fast car with handling issues and the one that sticks out most is the FW16 after their active suspension was banned. The Williams engineers couldn't understand how Senna was able to set the lap times that he did with that car.

Times are meaningless though.

#72 intelligentsia

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 10:56

It´s strange. Almost everyone praises lotus, but from my personal point of view they seemed to be lacking rear end grip badly. :well:

Anyway, it can be due to watching the car with different configs at different times of the day..... who knows.


Well it seems like both Lotus drivers prefers oversteer to understeer, so perhaps that has got something to do with it.


#73 grunge

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 11:07

Lotus
Grosjean seemed to be able to get a lot of running in. The car seemed a bit unstable under braking. Romain had a few moments entering the last corner, including one very big wobble one time. The car's sound has a deep, throaty roar to it which makes it quite different to the other Renault powered machines.

thanks a bunch man..though taken into consideration that both KR and RG are running oversteery setups,opposite lock correction every now and then is perhaps to be expected..

#74 engel

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 11:27

Williams appeared to be doing a race simulation before the car broke down the first time. It included a racing pit-stop so the car must have had a heavy fuel load on board. It seemed to handle well when heavy. After the car broke down we saw Senna briefly on the pit wall and the crowd gave him a cheer. Reliability must be a worry though because the car stopped again at T1 when we were leaving the track.


That was deliberate, the car didn't break down they just run it till it was out of fuel on purpose (new engine manufacturer, it's called a fuel run, gives them a baseline for fuel calculations)

#75 TeamSideways

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 12:45

Well it depends what times you takie into consideration. Last year's Barichello time was glory run. As well as Thursday's Rosberg's time.


oh yeah ? and how do u know that kimi was a glory run, grosjean was a glory run , alonso was a glory run blah blah blah . you will never know who is going for glory run

besides with all due respect to the forum posters who have been at the races , untrained eyes couldn't tell whats is a good car and what is a bad car , even pros get it wrong most of the time

#76 PayasYouRace

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 14:30

That was deliberate, the car didn't break down they just run it till it was out of fuel on purpose (new engine manufacturer, it's called a fuel run, gives them a baseline for fuel calculations)


That explains that. We were walking out of the track, saw him go past and then...silence.

#77 Watkins74

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 15:16

Great thread. I am jealous of all of you who went to testing. :cool:

#78 madrocker

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 16:03

I do believe Williams thought they had a rocket last year but they were testing an illegal car and only found out between the last test and the first race so the Barrichello lap wasn't so much of a 'glory run', just an 'ignorant run'.

#79 Starish

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 16:07

I do believe Williams thought they had a rocket last year but they were testing an illegal car and only found out between the last test and the first race so the Barrichello lap wasn't so much of a 'glory run', just an 'ignorant run'.

Really? what was illegal on the car?

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#80 wewantourdarbyback

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 16:17

I do believe Williams thought they had a rocket last year but they were testing an illegal car and only found out between the last test and the first race so the Barrichello lap wasn't so much of a 'glory run', just an 'ignorant run'.


The team put in one obvious glory lap last year and if you looked at the overall weren't looking overly promising.

#81 Szoelloe

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 16:18

I do believe Williams thought they had a rocket last year but they were testing an illegal car and only found out between the last test and the first race so the Barrichello lap wasn't so much of a 'glory run', just an 'ignorant run'.



Really? what was illegal on the car?


Nothing. The car had real promise, but by Melbourne they had to increase the ride height considerably not break the floor so it lost all its competitiveness. Design flaw. What is totally 'ignorant' though, is the constant misuse of that expression(glory run) for basically any laptime set on a hypothetically low load, in a short stint by anybody.

Edited by Szoelloe, 11 February 2012 - 16:19.


#82 Ferrari2183

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 16:19

Really? what was illegal on the car?

There was speculation that Williams ran underweight.

#83 PayasYouRace

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 16:23

Some of my own pictures from the test:

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#84 PayasYouRace

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 16:32

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#85 jjcale

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 17:15

Great Idea for a thread... if I can make my annual pilgrimage to Barcelona I will add my 2 cents. Only caught 1 1/2 days last years and it was unrepresentative to say the least.... but everybody's views taken together should give us a good idea of where things stand.

Thanks for the opinions and pics so far.

Edited by jjcale, 11 February 2012 - 17:24.


#86 jrg19

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 17:18

Great photos payasyourace :up:

#87 Anomnader

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 17:29

The shape of the Williams looks great on those pictures.. why is it so slow :-(

#88 scandyman

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 17:43

The shape of the Williams looks great on those pictures.. why is it so slow :-(

Style isn't over substance.;)

#89 Andy865

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 17:47

The caterham is beginning to look a bit bulky in the rear after seeing those. Not a big fan of the metallic green either but that's justa meee.

#90 Ferrari2183

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 18:02

The caterham is beginning to look a bit bulky in the rear after seeing those. Not a big fan of the metallic green either but that's justa meee.

From the side profile the McLaren looks bulky as well.

#91 riano

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 18:40

the williams is stunning :love: :love:

#92 Owen

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 18:50

the williams is stunning :love: :love:

It does actually look like one of the most shrink wrapped cars out there. There's just so little of 'it'!

#93 wewantourdarbyback

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 21:21

The shape of the Williams looks great on those pictures.. why is it so slow :-(


If you look at the times, or listen to the team, you'll see they've only been doing long runs on higher fuel.

#94 wewantourdarbyback

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 21:22

the williams is stunning :love: :love:


If you ignore the step it's easily the best looking of the lot IMO.

(although I could be biased)

#95 Anomnader

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 21:44

If you ignore the step it's easily the best looking of the lot IMO.

(although I could be biased)


Yep, it just needs a nose job and a beautiful paint scheme and it'd be the best on the grid

#96 showtime

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Posted 11 February 2012 - 21:53

If you ignore the step it's easily the best looking of the lot IMO.

(although I could be biased)


I found that rear end quite ugly, it looks like something is missing.

#97 Kubiccia

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Posted 12 February 2012 - 03:29

Payas, thanks for sharing this photos :up:

Nice angles, in the sideways shots one can see how much lower Mclaren nose is compared to all the others. Not only the nose tip but the whole nose and this kind of intrigue me given what I learnt on the other thread where I asked about safety of low noses.

I know it's off topic, but it's just amazing how Mclaren seems to be fast with such low nose when "the higher the nose, the better" is the norm. :well: :confused: :eek:

#98 DrF

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Posted 12 February 2012 - 04:26

Really? what was illegal on the car?

It was underweight.

#99 DrF

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Posted 12 February 2012 - 04:37

oh yeah ? and how do u know that kimi was a glory run, grosjean was a glory run , alonso was a glory run blah blah blah . you will never know who is going for glory run

besides with all due respect to the forum posters who have been at the races , untrained eyes couldn't tell whats is a good car and what is a bad car , even pros get it wrong most of the time

Thats the point of this thread. If we go on laptimes only then we can deduce nothing about the cars, but if someone's seen the cars in action, they might add some substance to the times. Commentators last year all said how good the Red Bull looked last year and they were right, even though Red Bull hardly ever topped the timesheets. Mclaren were struggling during testing but they got their car sorted in time for the season opener and beat Ferrari who didn't seem to struggle during testing, but were posting super fast times. Comments like these from people who've spent a day watching the cars are worth a lot more than any amount of laptimes.

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#100 ArtShelley

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Posted 12 February 2012 - 05:57

Lotus
Grosjean seemed to be able to get a lot of running in. The car seemed a bit unstable under braking. Romain had a few moments entering the last corner, including one very big wobble one time. The car's sound has a deep, throaty roar to it which makes it quite different to the other Renault powered machines.


Worth remembering that Grosjean's thoughts after his first running with the car was that it was a bit "too" stable and that it could actually be a bit edgier to get more laptime out of it. Based on this, it seems plausible that Lotus adjusted the setup to do just that and the instability subsequently noticed was a result of that "edgieness" being introduced.