02 SEPTEMBER 2016
ITALIAN GP – FRIDAY PRACTICE
First Practice Session: 1:24.982, Position: 8, Laps: 25
Second Practice Session: 1:23.732, Position: 5, Laps: 25
“It was a good day on track. We knew that it would be a more difficult weekend for the team as this is definitely the most challenging track for us on the calendar, but I think it wasn’t too bad today and we can definitely improve for tomorrow. We found a good balance in between the sectors so it’s now up to us and the car. For the moment we are a little bit too far behind Mercedes, but if we get everything sorted for tomorrow, we can get closer. They definitely look very strong. Difficult to say what tomorrow brings, it will for sure be tougher than Spa and I think you can clearly see that, but we’ll do our best.”
First Practice Session: 1:25.120, Position: 10, Laps: 17
Second Practice Session: 1:24.003, Position: 6, Laps: 33
“After today’s action I think we are more or less where we expected to be. I would like to be closer to Ferrari but we didn’t really find the times on the supersofts, though the softs felt competitive. I think tomorrow it will tighten up at the top even more. I expect Mercedes to lock out the front row and Ferrari look like the next best. Fifth and sixth for now is not too bad and gives us plenty to work on for tomorrow. Monza is a very high speed circuit so if you have the right race car you have the opportunity to overtake. Even if you’re a little bit down on top speed you can get a good slipstream and use DRS to make a pass. Looking at strategy here in the past it has typically been a one stop race so that limits the options and even in today’s heat the tyres lasted well so I can’t see that changing for now. Max did a fairly long stint on the supersofts and the result looked good.”
Need for Speed
Ahh Monza, F1’s last true Temple of Speed™, a circuit designed for those who care not for altius or fortius but whose only concern is the pursuit of citius… well, something like that. So, in honour of this wonderful and increasingly rare beast we’ve dug up some other speedy record holders…
- World’s fastest tortoise – In the slow and steady world of the tortoise, Bertie is Usain Bolt. A resident of Adventure Valley, a theme park in Durham, UK, Bertie last year sprinted over a 5.48 m course set at a gradient of 1:12 in a speedy 19.59 seconds, thus gaining entry into the Guinness Book of World Records as the planet’s fastest tortoise. During his record-breaking run, Bertie reached the camera-blurring speed of 0.28 m/s (0.92 ft/sec).
- World’s fastest tennis serve – On 9 May 2012, Australian Samuel Groth served an ace recorded at 263 km/h (163.4 mph) during an ATP Challenger event in Busan, South Korea. The serve came during Groth’s second-round match against Belarussian Uladzimir Ignatik. Power ain’t everything, though, and Groth still lost the match 6-4, 6-3 and despite his lightning serve the Aussie is currently ranked 228 in the world.
- Fastest Ever Spacecraft – This one is so mind-meltingly complicated that we’ve decided to ignore most of the hard science (which has to do with gravitational forces and some other things we’re a bit too thick to understand) and we just looked at the topline speed. In that regard, the fastest is the Helios 2 probe launched in 1976 for the purpose of studying solar processes. While in heliocentric orbit it reached a speed of 252,792 km/h (157,078 mph). It and sister probe Helios 1 fed data back to Earth until 1985 and while they’re no longer functional the two hardy spacecraft are still in orbit around the star.
- Fastest circumnavigation of the world in a balloon
Our most recently awarded speedster is Russian adventurer Fedor Konyukhov, who in July of this year broke Steve Fossett’s 14-year-old record for flying around the world in a balloon. Having taken off at Northan in Western Australia, Konyukhov took just 11 days to float around the globe before landing near the small town of Bonnie Rock in WA. It’s not the Russian’s only record: he’s also the only man to complete a solo circumnavigation of Antarctica in a sailboat and has records to his name for rowing across the Atlantic and Pacific. His next mission – to ride a camel across Australia. Are we getting the impression that he’s easily bored?
- Fastest mobility scooter
Most people when thinking about fast vehicles look at buying something designed for the purpose. Other more questing souls seek to create speed where none existed before. Two such oddballs are Isle of Man residents David Anderson and Mathew Hine who decided that the vehicle best suited for really high speeds is a mobility scooter. The two speed demons thus bolted on a 600cc motorcycle engine and on 30 August 2014 at Jurby Motodrome, Isle of Man, powered it to a speed of 173.16 km/h (107.6 mph), measured as an average over 1/4 of a mile.
5 World’s Fastest Downhill Skateboarder
This one goes to Sweden’s Erik Lundberg. The longboarding legend this year set a new downhill speed record of 130.63 km/h (81.16 mph) on a run in Quebec, Canada. That’s 130 km/h on a plank of wood no more than a metre in length with wheels of around 75mm in diameter. You can watch his run here: http://www.redbull.com/uk/en/adventure/stories/1331799087349/erik-lundberg-breaks-record-for-downhill-skateboard