6TH APRIL 2018
First Practice session: No timed lap set
Second Practice Session: 1:30.745 Position: 5, Laps: 32
“We had a small issue this morning. These things happen so it doesn’t concern me looking ahead to the rest of the weekend. It was not ideal to miss so much track time, it meant that I spent the beginning of the second session searching for the balance of the car which took a while. For such a short time in the car I managed to find quite a good balance and the long run pace looked pretty positive. I was also happy with how the tyre degradation looked at the end of that session. Come race day it will depend a lot on strategy, you can follow at this track better than others so with the right planning and a bit of luck you can get a good result. I think Practice 2 is the most important as it’s the closest conditions to the race, the others are a bit warm. Tomorrow we need to fine tune the short run pace in order to put ourselves in contention on Sunday, I’ll try to improve the feeling and balance to put myself in the best position possible.”
First Practice Session: 1:31.060 Position: 1, Laps: 14
Second Practice Session: 1:30.751 Position: 6, Laps: 31
“Overall it wasn’t a bad day. Obviously, this morning was pretty strong but the evening session was not as good; we made some changes that didn’t work as well as we hoped. I don’t just want to go back to the Practice One car as I think we can still make it better. We can find a happy medium on the balance and the overall feeling is not too bad. I don’t think the position this evening is too important. I got traffic on the first lap, so I had to go for the second lap, and for sure I lost a bit of lap time there. Mercedes will still turn it up in Qualifying but we will be closer than where we were tonight. I’m confident that we will have a good car and tomorrow I’m sure we can be better than sixth and hopefully even better again in the race. I also just want to say that I don’t want Valtteri to get a penalty. This is Practice and it’s frustrating but I don’t think anyone agreed with my penalty last week and I don’t want to start that game. I believe he wasn’t told on the radio, so it’s probably not his fault.”
The Alternative Rules
Crucial meetings, key proposals, long-term goals… it was all happening at a meeting of top brass from across F1 this morning, but while there was plenty of deep discussion about power units and so forth, we couldn’t help but wonder if they’d looked a little bit beyond the big ticket stuff and considered some alternative rules and regs we definitely think should be included post-2020…
Article 1: Seriously, what’s with those really early starts to sessions at North American races? It’s really harsh and we’re not having it. In future, no session shall start before…. Hold on, what’s a good time for you? Midday? Yeah, that sounds good.
Article 2: F1 Future Stars (aka Grid Kids) shall be responsible for ensuring that drivers:
i) Get to the grid in good time, with their new race suit on (and no arguments that he likes the old one better or that his friends will make fun of the new one)
ii) Don’t drink too much within an hour of the race start and uses the facilities before getting into the car, as we’re not stopping anywhere on the way
ii) Play nice with the other drivers.
After all, there’s only room for so many temperamental children on the grid.
Article 3: Driver nicknames: Following the implementation of career-long numbers for drivers, in a bid to improve brand recognition, each driver must adopt a colourful nickname by which they can be referred to by race commentators. Nicknames will be selected by a panel of their peers. Drivers are not allowed to choose their own nicknames as a grid of 20 drivers known as ‘Simply the Best’, ‘Champ’ and ‘I’m Definitely Quicker than All of You’ is just silly and appellations such as The Chubby One, Crybaby, Captain Slow and 10 Gauge (Because he’s thick and hard to work with) are much more fun.
Article 4: Races in places we don’t like: Under a new regulation, Formula 1’s promoter is expressly forbidden from holding races in places no one likes – not even the people who live there. Instead, a shortlist of cool places will be drawn up by those who attend 75% or more of all races each season and we’ll race there.
Article 5: No season shall feature a comedy back-to-back involving a madcap transcontinental dash of epic but Keystone Cops-like proportions. Yes, touring rock bands of old had acid-fried road managers who’d book them a gig in Detroit one night and in Djibouti the next, but it’s not the ‘60s anymore and we have Google Maps. Look it up.
Article 6: A flexible approach to regulations: No more will teams be allowed to take liberties with, exploit loopholes in or find an unfair advantage in the regulations. From now on the spirit of the regulations must be adhered to rigorously… oh, who are we kidding?