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Malaysian Grand Prix 2012 Qualifying : Hamilton gets pole, Button second in all McLaren front row

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Sorry for being out of action for the Australian Grand Prix, too much work, missed some of today’s qualifying also. Karun Chandhok is commentating for Star Sports now, so things surely have changed. Sepang looks like a good place to start tracking the season.

I am starting a new thing, wherein I will be penning my thoughts as the sessions progress. The third session of qualifying is about to start and Star Sports just showed 30 seconds of footage with 10 seconds focusing  on a driver’s wife/girlfriend with race control headphones on before going into a commercial break again.

Iceman Kimi Raikkonen is the first man out on track in his Lotus Renault followed by last year’s champion Sebastien Vettel in his Red Bull and McLaren’s Jenson Button. Red Bull seems to be totally off pace so far this season although they tasted some success in Melbourne.

After the 1st three cars have set a flying lap, its Lewis Hamilton in P1,  leading Jenson Button who leads Kimi Raikkonnen.

www.hoch-zwei.net

As more cars set their 1st Q3 times, Sebastien Vettel only manages a P6 in his Red Bull. I am eagerly awaiting the 2 Mercedes and the Ferraris at this point. Nice Rosberg and Michael Schumacher are on their warm-up laps even as I write.

As they head onto their flying laps, Michael is inside the best time on Sector1 (Lewis Hamilton’s) while Rosberg is much slower in the 1st Sector and outside Hamilton’s P1 time. Schumi is just outside Hamilton’s time in sector 2 where Lewis Hamilton’s McLaren gained the most time and is the fastest.

Haven’t felt this excited by a Michael Schumacher flying lap in a long time, Schumi is off Hamilton by .18 of a second at the end of his flying lap, but its nice to see Michael Schumacher at the top again (almost). The Mercedes cars opting only for 1 lap in Q3, I wonder why, it was always awesome to see Michael doing flying laps 1 by  and getting awesome times in. Here is a photo from Friday with Michael surveying the track in trademark style on his scooter.

Michael Schumacher Sepang on track on scooter

Red Bull and Lotus are now pushing in their second laps in the last 20 seconds of Q3. Some random commentary chatter about Red Bulls (its Sebastien Vettel only) using harder compound tyres putting the race ahead of qualifying. Webber still gets P3 and Button is pushed to 5th position by Kimi Raikkonen’s 4th best time.

But wait Jenson Button fights back with a P2 time now. It’s an all McLaren front row with Button’s time, Michael Schumacher has to be content with a second row P3. Kimi Raikkonen has a 5 place penalty to contend with so his P4 isn’t actually a P4.

And the qualifying sessions ends, the final order being (before penalties):

Pos  No  Driver  Team  Q1 Q2 Q3  Laps
1 4 Lewis Hamilton  McLaren-Mercedes  01:37.8 01:37.1 01:36.2 14
2 3 Jenson Button  McLaren-Mercedes  01:37.6 01:36.9 01:36.4 14
3 7 Michael Schumacher  Mercedes  01:37.5 01:37.0 01:36.4 14
4 2 Mark Webber  Red Bull Racing-Renault  01:37.2 01:37.4 01:36.5 19
5 9 Kimi Räikkönen  Lotus-Renault  01:38.0 01:36.7 01:36.5 13
6 1 Sebastian Vettel  Red Bull Racing-Renault  01:38.1 01:37.4 01:36.6 14
7 10 Romain Grosjean  Lotus-Renault  01:38.1 01:37.3 01:36.7 14
8 8 Nico Rosberg  Mercedes  01:37.7 01:37.0 01:36.7 14
9 5 Fernando Alonso  Ferrari  01:38.2 01:37.4 01:37.6 16
10 15 Sergio Perez  Sauber-Ferrari  01:37.9 01:37.5 01:37.7 17
11 18 Pastor Maldonado  Williams-Renault  01:37.8 01:37.6   14
12 6 Felipe Massa  Ferrari  01:38.4 01:37.7   15
13 19 Bruno Senna  Williams-Renault  01:38.4 01:37.8   13
14 11 Paul di Resta  Force India-Mercedes  01:38.3 01:37.9   15
15 16 Daniel Ricciardo  STR-Ferrari  01:38.4 01:37.9   14
16 12 Nico Hulkenberg  Force India-Mercedes  01:38.3 01:37.9   13
17 14 Kamui Kobayashi  Sauber-Ferrari  01:38.4 01:38.1   12
18 17 Jean-Eric Vergne  STR-Ferrari  01:39.1     7
19 20 Heikki Kovalainen  Caterham-Renault  01:39.3     9
20 21 Vitaly Petrov  Caterham-Renault  01:39.6     6
21 24 Timo Glock  Marussia-Cosworth  01:40.9     8
22 25 Charles Pic  Marussia-Cosworth  01:41.3     8
23 22 Pedro de la Rosa  HRT-Cosworth  01:42.9     4
24 23 Narain Karthikeyan  HRT-Cosworth  01:43.7     6

Good news for the HRTs finally, they make the race cut this time unlike the disappointment in Australia. Although, I sometimes wonder if its even worth it. They are so off the race pace that it makes no sense for them to be in formula one racing,what do you think ?

Narain Karthikeyan’s sponsors have to do some soul searching and get him a better drive, who knows what he can do in a Sauber or a Red Bull.

Force India is not living up to their pre-season hype and is struggling to keep pace not making it to the Q3 also.

Onto the Press conference now, Lewis Hamilton isn’t swearing this season, what’s up with that ? Also its Michael’s best qualifying since Monza 2011, where he was 5th. That’s just wow !

With rain predicted for tomorrow, Steve Slater would bet on Lewis Hamilton, really Steve ? The lady host would bet on Michael Schumacher though, finally some support. sorry I don’t know who your are or your name Smile

Sebastian Vettel pulls off another victory in perfectly executed Indian Grand Prix

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Felipe Massa at the Indian Grand Prix

Apologies that we don’t have a Sebastian Vettel image for you there, the prudes at Red Bull media feel we don’t deserve access to their media section.

As the race telecast began, the atmosphere was electric, there were people with their faces painted, there were dancers dancing bhangra and there were the who’s who of bollywood and even hollywood (atleast Lady Gaga 🙂 ) at the track. There were murmurs all around of the ticket pricing though. Everyone seemed discontent with the high ticket pricing. And most of these were the ones who had paid Rs.2.5k , imagine the light of those who had paid Rs.35000 for the 3 day pass. The feeling though was still upbeat, India was finally hosting it and with minimal government intervention. Suresh Kalmadi thankfully had nothing to do with this event and the private consortium Jaypee Sports was able to pull it off.

Rowan Atkinson Mr Bean at Indian Grand Prix

As the warm-up lap started, the newly converted formula one fan crowd started to applause, don’t ask me why. The noise obviously was deafening, those without earplugs were the unluckiest and would most probably lose some hearing ability. I couldn’t secure media access , partly due to my laziness, so I don’t know what the atmosphere was in the media room.

Michael Schumacer at the Indian Grand Prix

I wouldn’t review whole of the race, you can find that anywhere else, we usually talk about the race and other stuff around the races and it usually isnt coherent also. The post is peppered with a few photos of the Indian Grand Prix I know you would enjoy. Heading into the race Red Bull is easily the team to beat, Sebastian Vettel is breaking record after record. His comparison once was done with Michael Schumacher, but now those are moving to Ayrton Senna. I somehow disagree with those comparisons. Both Schumacher and Senna have proven themselves with average cars, Vettel on the other hand is blessed with a car that beats the rest of the grid. Same way that Brawn GP had beat almost everyone else last season and Button was the hero of heroes.

Bernie Ecclestone, Subrata Roy, Sachin Tendulkar, Shahrukh Khan and Gulshan Grover at the Indian Grand PrixAs the five red lights went out and the Indian GP was go, there was a first corner incident, nothing like Spa though. Button tried to make moves on Vettel, but to no avail.  Most of the race wasn’t very interesting though, Vettel lead from start to finish.

Shahrukh Khan faking some formula one gyaanThe bigger highlight was Sachin Tendulkar waving the chequered flag for the formula one cars. There were some interesting bits on Lap 24, Lewis Hamilton tried to take the inside line on Felipe Massa, Massa tried to block and hit Hamilton. Seeing it on High Definition on ESPN later , it does seem to be Massa’s fault, but I read somewhere that Hamilton’s been told to reduce the bad blood with Felipe Massa on the track. Like that would go any good. Ask Ron Dennis what happens when you are Lewis Hamilton to do anything. Looking at Rowan Atkinson during the incident just made by day. No Mr.Bean face could have said it better.

The ending was perfect, with Vettel sipping champagne and telling everyone that Indian girls are good looking. Quite a few social networking jokes on that. Overall it was pulled off without a hitch and the Indianess usually expected from huge events held at India. Sure traffic was a mess, but you cant have your cake and eat it too.

Written by Formula One Addict

October 31st, 2011 at 5:13 pm

Sebastian Vettel gets pole position, Narain Karthikeyan almost last in maiden Indian Grand Prix

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Buddh International Circuit Long Shot

It was an action packed qualifying session, the traffic snarls at the venue were legendary with the snarls extending to late evening when I was passing by the track. Spotted a few team folks in various cars 🙂 Team Lotus prefers the Renault Fluence to travel in style.

Jenson Button Qualifying Indian GP

Sebastian Vettel grabbed another pole position showing the dominance of his Red Bull, he is just three wins shy of Michael Schumacher’s record of most wins in a formula one season and looks all set to equal that if he continues his current form.

“The car was fantastic since yesterday and throughout qualifying,” said Sebastian Vettel. “In the end there was a little bit left in the first sector.

“I’m extremely happy and it’s good to be here. It will be a very interesting race on a challenging circuit.

“You have to really make sure you stay on the line and the circuit here is not forgiving mistakes. It’s not easy but I enjoy what I do and I was excited when I came here.”

Lewis Hamilton was second fastest in qualifying however due to a penalty he was given on Friday, he got thrown back three places and will start fifth on the grid. Fernando Alonso who will start third on the grid and seemed pleased with Hamilton’s penalty :

“With Hamilton’s penalty, starting third will be even better,” The Spaniard said

Teammate Brazilian Felipe Massa could manage only sixth position in contrast. He has been quite a press favorite with certain Indian tabloids going gaga over his resemblance to his brother whatshisname Massa.

Lewis Hamilton Indian Grand Prix Qualifying

Meanwhile Narain Karthikeyan would have entered the bad books of Michael Schumacher. Narain impeded the German champion in his hot lap and was penalized five places. Needless to say that generally means Narain Karthikeyan would be starting last on the grid. However since Timo Glock is approved to race despite being too slow, Narain wont be last on the grid.

Adrian Sutil of Force India qualified in eight position impressing new boss Subrata Roy (in photo with Nico Hulkenberg). Force India fans will remember Sahara bought stake in the team rechristening it the Sahara Force India formula one team.

Nico Hulkenberg subrata Roy

F1 2011 game by Codemasters : Now in India through Zapak

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I remember growing up playing the formula one games on my friend’s PS3, the Monaco circuit would be our favourite with damage on. That would be one difficult race to win. Well since that time I have always loved the official formula one games.

I write this post as the latest game in the series ‘F1 2011’ is launched and yes it includes the new Buddh International circuit at Noida. Its coded by codemasters and is marketed by Zapak in India.

F1 2011 Title

The game has a number of new gameplay options, one of which is the much awaited co-op mode, you and your friend compete as formula one racing partners for a team. I have just got my review copy and cant wait to play it out. If you are looking for features, they are all listed here. You can also view the release trailer here, the graphics look simply awesome ! Am awaiting my Xbox copy to really see the HD graphics 🙂

The game is available on PC, Xbox 360 and PS3.

F1 2011™ is the sequel to the BAFTA winning FORMULA ONE™ videogame from Codemasters®, the developer and publisher of award-winning racing games. Developed under Codemasters’ exclusive worldwide agreement with Formula One   World Championship Limited, F1 2011 will come complete with all the official drivers, teams and circuits featuring in the 2011 FIA FORMULA ONE World Championship™. Zapak Games, the licensing & merchandising arm of Zapak Digital Entertainment Ltd. will distribute the title in India.

Developed using Codemasters’ EGO Game Technology Platform F1 2011 will deliver an unrivalled FORMULA ONE experience that puts players into the heart of the world’s most exciting sport, powered by cutting edge graphics, advanced physics systems and integrated network play.

· Go Compete!  F1 2011 builds extensively on the multiplayer options from F1 2010. Split-screen racing is included for the first time in a high-definition FORMULA ONE title. Competitive online racing is extended with 16 players going head-to-head in GRAND PRIX™ with up to 8 AI drivers added to simulate the full grid of 24 drivers. An innovative new co-op Championship enables two players to lead their favourite FORMULA ONE team to Driver and Constructor glory across the course of a FORMULA ONE season. These enhancements are complimented by additional quick fire modes including Time Attack.

· New Circuits for 2011. Two stunning new additions to the race calendar extend the number of circuits to feature in F1 2011 to 19. Players will be able to debut ahead of the drivers on the Buddh International Circuit, the home of the first FORMULA 1 GRAND PRIX OF INDIA and players will be able to test themselves on the iconic Nürburging circuit for the first time in High Definition, as this legendary track returns for the 2011 season.

· Be the driver, live the life.  From the paddock to the track, F1 2011 takes players closer to the experience of being a FORMULA ONE driver than ever before. A new Parc Ferme area, an expanded and revamped Paddock, new Pit Lane, celebration and reaction cinematics and an enhanced media interaction system fully immerse players in the glamour, pressure and excitement of being a FORMULA ONE driver. Players progress from rookie to FIA FORMULA ONE DRIVERS’ WORLD CHAMPION in an extensive career mode where gamers fight to become priority driver and shape the development of the car by performing well in races and earning performance upgrades.

· All the cars, all the stars. Fully licensed, F1 2011 features all the drivers set to contest the 2011 FIA FORMULA ONE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP, including Sebastian Vettel, Lewis Hamilton, Fernando Alonso, Michael Schumacher and Jenson Button. All 2011 teams are represented including Ferrari, Red Rull Racing, Vodafone McLaren Mercedes and Lotus Renault GP in their iconic black and gold livery.

· KERS, DRS and more! F1 2011 includes all the new rule changes set to make this year’s season the most exciting yet. F1 2011 debuts DRS (Drag Reduction System) – the new system which enables drivers to adjust the rear wing on the car to give a boost of up to 10km. KERS also returns, giving players an extra 80BHP for up to 6.67 seconds, enabling drivers to blast past rivals. Combined, these systems encourage close wheel-to-wheel racing with new options for both defence and attack. This season’s new Pirelli tyres are faithfully simulated in the game, and if players push their car too hard they may experience a range of authentic new damage failures.

· Full Day / Night Racing. The 2011 FORMULA 1 ETHIAD AIRWAYS ABU DHABI GRAND PRIX comes alive with a full day/ night transition which recreates the special atmosphere at this unique track. Every one of the existing circuits from the 2010 roster has been given a complete visual overhaul. New atmospheric effects, including dynamic clouds, compliment a weather system which features an advanced rain model that affects on-track grip.  Powered by the EGO Game Technology Platforms, F1 2011 pushes forward the graphical standard of what can be achieved in a racing game.

· The world’s greatest cars, the most exciting racing. Building on the heritage of producing award-winning racing games for over a decade, Codemasters is uniquely placed to realise the spectacle and exhilaration of racing 200MPH+ FORMULA ONE cars for all fans. F1 2011 can be tuned for players from a wide range of skill levels, from the casual gamer to the hardcore simulation enthusiast and those in between, with a range of differing skill levels. A huge range of vehicle variables can be tuned to suit each player’s unique driving style, or drivers can entrust their Race Engineer to set their car up and head straight onto the track. F1 2011 will support a comprehensive range of racing wheels for the ultimate racing experience.

· Unprecedented authenticity. Codemasters has used its unprecedented access to the world of FORMULA ONE to connect the development team directly with FORMULA ONE teams and tyre manufacturers. Extensive consultancy has taken place with a range of FORMULA ONE professionals, including race engineers, mechanics and drivers. This has been combined with real world data including CAD and on-board telemetry to deliver a race experience complete with authentic handling, accurate circuits and precisely modelled racing cars.

· EGO powered FORMULA ONE. F1 2011 is being developed on the EGO Game Technology platform, evolved from the award winning EGO engine. Enabling Codemasters development talent to share tools and technology across Studios and Central Technology teams, the EGO Game Technology Platform empowers Codemasters game designers to realise their creative visions across multiple platforms featuring cutting edge graphics, powerful AI, advanced physics systems and integrated network play.

Dispute over Ferrari’s 2011 challenger’s name resolved, the F150 is now the F150th Italia (Ferrari 150° Italia)

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Ferrari 150° Italia Testing preseason

This year Ferrari went forward with a non-standard way of naming their 2011 F1 challenger, they called it the F150 to celebrate the 150 years of unification of the country of Italy. This angered the Ford motor company which owns the F150 trademark in the US (and possibly other countries). The F150 is a line of pickup trucks from Ford the latest model being the 2011 Ford F-150.

So Ford decided to take legal action against Ferrari and filed a suit in US courts against Ferrari using their trademark name and sought damages from the Italy based company. Ferrari was swift to respond and doused the legal fire by renaming their 2011 formula one car to the Ferrari 150° Italia. This change made Ford withdraw the legal proceedings which it had initiated in the US.

A statement on Ferrari media site read :

In order to avoid the slightest risk of anyone confusing a Formula 1 car with a pick-up truck, for their part, the men from Maranello have decided that the car will lose the F that precedes the number 150 and which stands for Ferrari, as it has done on numerous occasions when it’s come to giving a car a code name, be it for the race track or the road. It appears that this could have caused so much confusion in the minds of the consumer across the Pond that, at the same time as losing the F, the name will be completely Italianised, replacing the English “th” with the equivalent Italian symbol.

Therefore the name will now read as the Ferrari 150° Italia, which should make it clear even to the thickest of people that the name of the car is a tribute to the anniversary of the unification of our country. Let’s hope the matter is now definitely closed and that we can concentrate on more serious matters, namely ensuring that our car that already seems to be pretty good out of the box, becomes a real winner.

Pretty tongue in cheek 🙂 , don’t you think ?

Written by Formula One Addict

March 5th, 2011 at 12:29 pm

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