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Post by Fernando on Thu 08 Oct 2015, 8:29 pm

F1 heads to the Sochi Autodrom this weekend, to race around the home of the 2014 Winter Olympics for the second time.

The layout uses a mix of a permanent track based around the pit complex and an extended temporary circuit winding around the rest of the Olympic Park.

The 2015 Russian GP in a nutshell

Track: Sochi Autodrom. Part-temporary, part-permanent circuit.

Race start time: 12pm UK time Sunday (2pm local).

Laps: 53.

Track length: 5.848km.

Tyre allocation: Supersoft (red) and soft (yellow).

DRS Zones: Two with separate detection spots (between turns one and two and between turns 10 and 13).

Driver steward: Derek Daly.

Lap record: Valtteri Bottas - 1:40.896 (Williams, 2014).

2014 pole: Lewis Hamilton - 1:38.513 (Mercedes).

Form guide

There has only been one Grand Prix in Russia to date and Lewis Hamilton took pole and victory in Sochi last year.

2014 result: 1. Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes); 2. Nico Rosberg, (Mercedes); 3. Valtteri Bottas (Williams); 4. Jenson Button (McLaren); 5. Kevin Magnussen (McLaren); 6. Fernando Alonso (Ferrari); 7. Daniel Ricciardo (Red Bull); 8. Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull); 9. Kimi Raikkonen (Ferrari); 10. Sergio Perez (Force India)

Tyre allocation

Pirelli will bring the softest tyres in their range - the red-marked supersoft and the yellow-banded soft tyres to Russia. These tyres are a step softer than last year.

The Italian firm's motorsport director Paul Hembery said: "There were a number of question marks that we faced coming to the Sochi circuit for the first time last year - as is inevitably the case with any new circuit - but we have since been able to collect extra data that means we have more information for 2015.

"As a result, we have gone a step softer with the tyre nomination this year to help us get back into the two to three pit stop window, which is what we desire for every race."

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Post by Guest on Fri 09 Oct 2015, 1:57 am

I wonder if there will be any calls of a boycott given that Russia is now treading on the toes of the US and Nato policy in Syria.

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Post by Guest on Fri 09 Oct 2015, 8:44 am

Doubt it. We had the same calls for a boycott last year, after the events of MH-17. Nothing happened.

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Post by Guest on Fri 09 Oct 2015, 4:59 pm

Looks like Red Bull are going crazy either to get the 2016 Ferrari engine for next year (apparently they have been offered the 2015 Ferrari engine) and are now getting Bernie Ecclestone to pressurise Mercedes to give them their engine (2015 or 2016 version).  Horner did say Red Bull would decide before the Russian Grand Prix whether to stay in the sport or leave, and I guess they are going to leave but are holding out first to see if they can force an engine supplier from their immediate competitors that would give them parity in challenging for the 2016/2017 championship.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/formula1/34484276

Ps first day at the Russian Grand Prix has been a shocker, with the first session ruined by the dumping of a truck load of diesel onto the course and the second session to an extent a rain out. Friday is of course key for tuning the cars to the circuit.

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Post by Guest on Sat 10 Oct 2015, 10:13 am

Can only see RB apologising & having to embarrassingly go back to Renault for engines.

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Post by Jermaine2015 on Sat 10 Oct 2015, 10:57 am

Massive accident for Carlos Sainz Jnr free practice 3 red flagged and ended early.

Sainz looks to escaped any major injuries.

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Post by Guest on Sat 10 Oct 2015, 11:29 am

Teams will be going into qualifying and the full race with hardly any time to properly set up their cars for the track and the track conditions. Such a situation seems a tad unsafe. Couple that with uncertainty as to how long the tyres will last (something FIA have deliberately had engineered to last only a few dozen laps) and you are left with rules that make F1 unsafe under certain conditions - such as for this race (three ruined or significantly reduced free practice sessions).

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Post by Guest on Sat 10 Oct 2015, 12:34 pm

To be honest, it's refreshing, not having the drivers comfortable & with perfectly set up cars, adds to the excitement & unpredictability. These are supposed to be world class drivers, paid millions, I'm sure they can cope with little preparation. If anything, it should just separate the good from the bad or the brave from the 'happy to pick up a cheque' brigade.

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Post by GSC on Sat 10 Oct 2015, 3:43 pm

Rosberg on pole, long run to turn 2 (1 is that kink iirc) and you can overtake up the inside on that corner so may not last long
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Post by Jermaine2015 on Sun 11 Oct 2015, 12:21 pm

Rosberg retires with a broken throttle and Hamilton has been gifted s third World Championship...A real poor era in F1...

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Post by GSC on Sun 11 Oct 2015, 12:28 pm

2nd safety car in 13 laps.

Agree with that Jermaine. Not a surprise to see Bernie gearing up for an assault on the rulebook
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Post by Guest on Sun 11 Oct 2015, 1:45 pm

Kimi picard

Glad Perez got third


Hamilton, effectively world champion

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Post by Guest on Sun 11 Oct 2015, 1:53 pm

Jermaine2015 wrote:A real poor era in F1...

Agree, although it hasn't helped Rosberg performing like Port Vale this year, against a Premiership standard Hamilton

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Post by GSC on Sun 11 Oct 2015, 2:30 pm

Kimi yolo'd it into that corner.

Decent race, good by this years standards. Race was still over after Rosbergs retirement, and good strategy got Vettel into clear air in 2nd.

F1 has real issues with overtaking though. Way too aero dependent these days.
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Post by bogbrush on Sun 11 Oct 2015, 2:52 pm

Quite funny to hear the calculation on Hamiltons lead only for it to emerge that Vettel is now 2nd.

Pretty damning for Rosberg to be behind anyone not sat in a Mercedes.
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Post by Guest on Sun 11 Oct 2015, 3:31 pm

Longer term view, is that Rosberg will now start to impede Mercedes, as the Ferrari closes the gap. Questions might have to start being asked about his continuation, as he's clearly failed the minimum standards set this year.

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Post by GSC on Sun 11 Oct 2015, 4:16 pm

Rosberg job was accomplished with Kimis penalty. Hes there to be the #2 and pick up enough podiums to make the constructors a formality while Hamilton wins the title. Why change it.

rather shockingly, Bernie has done what Bernie wants and resigned Pirelli.
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Post by Guest on Sun 11 Oct 2015, 5:25 pm

GSC wrote:Rosberg job was accomplished with Kimis penalty. Hes there to be the #2 and pick up enough podiums to make the constructors a formality while Hamilton wins the title. Why change it.

Think you miss the point. Longer term, next season, Ferrari will be even more competitive & challege Rosberg, not occasionally, but consistently. The problem isn't right now, the problem for Mercedes will be next season, when Rosberg's lack of ability, will be swamped on more frequently by Ferrari et al & will undoubtedly cost Mercedes in the constructors.

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Post by Guest on Sun 11 Oct 2015, 5:29 pm

Agree, but Mercedes won't change it. Just isn't the talent or proven driver readily available to step up into the title winning car. Rosberg will cost them next season, with an ever competitive Ferrari, but Mercedes will still feel they have the right balance & I'm not sure Kimi is really anything special anymore to say he's a massive step up to the other rivals no.2 of Rosberg.

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Post by GSC on Sun 11 Oct 2015, 9:55 pm

I'll hold my breath on Ferrari getting remotely near Mercedes. They just won the constructors Championship with 4 races to go, its a little bit early to say Rosberg is going to be some kind of liability in the constructors.

And as John says, Kimi is on his retirement tour.
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Post by Guest on Mon 12 Oct 2015, 6:53 pm

LiamB wrote: ... next season, Ferrari will be even more competitive & challege Rosberg, not occasionally, but consistently. The problem isn't right now, the problem for Mercedes will be next season, when Rosberg's lack of ability, will be swamped on more frequently by Ferrari et al & will undoubtedly cost Mercedes in the constructors.
And in the drivers championship ... given the disparity between Vettel and Raikkonen.  Rosberg is not quite good enough to win the championship - doesn't quite have the race craft for long enough to hold off Hamilton or Vettel (in a reasonably competitive car).  But Rosberg is good enough to take points off Hamilton from time to time and crash into him from time to time, whereas Vettel is far more dominant over team mate Raikkonen (and so Ferrari are more likely to impose team orders).

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Post by CuriousGeorge on Tue 13 Oct 2015, 4:35 pm

Would love to see Lewis and Seb in equally competitive cars (and Seb not getting all the luck) for a real full season's racing.

Think they're the two fastest drivers out there.

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Post by Jermaine2015 on Tue 13 Oct 2015, 9:22 pm

CuriousGeorge wrote:Would love to see Lewis and Seb in equally competitive cars (and Seb not getting all the luck) for a real full season's racing.

Think they're the two fastest drivers out there.
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Post by dyrewolfe on Wed 14 Oct 2015, 12:27 pm

CuriousGeorge wrote:Would love to see Lewis and Seb in equally competitive cars (and Seb not getting all the luck) for a real full season's racing.

Think they're the two fastest drivers out there.


If things got too "tasty" Mercedes might resort to team orders anyway. Look what happened last season when Lewis & Nico tangled on track.

Thats F1's other real problem. If it isn't the regs and heavily biased reward system destroying the element of inter-team competition, its individual teams "managing" their drivers to ensure they both finish the race. Understandable, but still disappointing.

Wasn't overly impressed with the Russian GP. The start and finish were fairly exciting but sandwiched in between was an hour or so of fairly pedestrian driving.

Pleased that Perez ended up on the podium as he drove to his team's strategy and deserved his moment of glory for managing to stay in contention until the last few laps.

Gutted for Bottas who was denied 3rd place by Kimi's reckless overtake attempt. However at least he should have another chance pretty soon, whereas FI could have another long wait for their next trophy...unless Checa is inspired to repeat his performance by being in front of his home crowd.
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Post by Guest on Sat 17 Oct 2015, 2:34 pm

McLaren have released Kevin Magnussen

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Post by Guest on Wed 21 Oct 2015, 2:26 pm

Looks like Juan Pablo Montoya will replace Nico Hulkenberg at Porsche for 2016 at Le Mans. Just in case you didn't know, 'The Triple Crown' of Motorsport consists of the three most prestigious races in the world, the Formula One Monaco Grand Prix, the Indianapolis 500 and the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Juan Pablo Montoya won Monaco in 2003 and the Indianapolis 500 twice, but still needs Le Mans. It hasn't been achieved since Graham Hill managed to complete the set, back in 1972.

Interesting to see what happens.

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