COTA

MINARDI ON F1



Gian Carlo Minardi “Sainz Jr, Ocon, Marciello, Evans for third car!

If third car must be, it has at least to be entrusted to young people, to keep growing in the future”. With these words,Gian Carlo Minardi analyzed the difficult economic situation that Formula 1 is going through, with Caterham and Marussia sales and the spectre of third car.

Since the beginning of his career, the DNA of the constructor from Faenza has been characterized by working with young drivers. Therefore, we could not shirk from asking him which names he would see working on third car. “Right now, promising young people are many and Made in Italy is second to none. Keeping within our bounds, Ferrari is asked to point to one of its young people, between Antonio Fuoco and Raffaele Marciello, without forgetting Antonio Giovinazzi”, Minardi says. “Coming out of our zone, I would certainly give an opportunity to the winner of FIA F.3, Esteban Ocon, who got behind the brand-new Toro Rosso driver, Max Verstappen. Moreover, it’s also said that he did very well in Valencia with Lotus and he will soon test the Ferrari at Fiorano, as a reward for winning the title. As I’ve underlined many times, I would see working the winner of WSR 3.5, Carlos Sainz Jr, paired with Verstappen in TR. The team is growing also structurally. So, I’d rely on a very young pair, aiming for continuing developing together, reaping the benefits within 2-3 years. With Ricciardo and Kvyat, Red Bull Racing’s doors seem to be locked in the short term”.

Going on the pyramid, we arrive to GP2, which consecrated Jolyon Palmer. “Personally, I like Mitch Evans and Felipe Nasrvery much. In view of third car, also Stoffel Vandoorne have to be included, being part of McLaren’s young drivers program”.

The question marks around the use of third car are still numerous. “It’s necessary to understand how it will be used for television rights and for scoring”, the manager from Faenza says. “Since we arrived at the third to last appointment, I hope that third car will be subject of meetings, facing with seriousness and coldness the topic”.

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WTCC



ECHITO FOLLOWS IN FANGIO’S FOOTSTEPS TO CLINCH WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP CROWN!

pechito012- Two weeks after winning the World Manufacturers’ Championship*, Citroën has added the Drivers’ title to its trophy cabinet than ks to José María López.

- The Suzuka meeting saw Pechito notch up his ninth race win of the season. Sébastien Loeb also made it onto the podium in race 1.

- José María López is the first Argentinian to win a motorsport World Championship since Juan Manuel Fangio fifty-seven years ago.

En s’attribuant la pole position sur le circuit de Suzuka, José María López avait fait un pas supplémentaire vers la consécration. Même si une quatrième place devenait suffisante pour s’assurer du titre de Champion du Monde FIA WTCC, le pilote de la Citroën C-Elysée WTCC n°37 décidait de faire preuve de panache !

À l’extinction des feux, il réussissait son meilleur départ de la saison pour virer en tête devant Yvan Muller. Troisième sur la grille, Sébastien Loeb manquait son envol et il bouclait le premier tour en cinquième position, derrière Tom Chilton et Hugo Valente.

Pare-chocs contre pare-chocs, les deux Citroën de tête décrochaient rapidement leurs poursuivants. Mais après quelques tours, Yvan Muller ressentait une possible crevaison à l’arrière. Le mal se confirmait et le quadruple Champion du Monde abandonnait à mi-distance. Cet événement était décisif sur l’attribution du titre Pilotes, mais l’équipe restait totalement concentrée sur la course. Dans un fauteuil, José María López filait vers la victoire, tandis que Sébastien Loeb continuait sa bagarre au sein du peloton. L’explication entre Chilton et Valente tournait à l’avantage de Seb, qui décrochait la troisième marche du podium dans l’avant-de rnière boucle !

Enfin, l’équipe Citroën Total pouvait exulter avec son champion et revêtir le célèbre maillot ciel et blanc et frappé du numéro 37 !

Les visages barrés de larges sourires, les mécaniciens attaquaient aussitôt la préparation des voitures pour la course 2. Sur la grille de départ, Loeb, Muller et López se plaçaient aux 8e, 9e et 10e positions. Dans le premier virage, Yvan Muller se montrait le plus inspiré en débordant ses adversaires par l’extérieur. Au premier passage sur la ligne de chronométrage, il était sixième devant Seb et Pechito.

Groupées dans un mouchoir, les trois Citroën butaient derrière Hugo Valente. Muller tentait sa chance au cinquième tour. Les deux voitures se touchaient et Valente abandonnait. Dans la foulée, López se glissait dans un trou de souris pour prendre le dessus sur Loeb. Cinquième, sixième et septième, les trois C-Elysée WTCC restaient dans cet ordre jusqu’au drapeau à damiers.

ILS ONT DIT

Yves Matton, Directeur de Citroën Racing : « José María López est un beau Champion du Monde, pour Citroën, pour l’Argentine et pour le FIA WTCC ! Nous sommes heureux et fiers de l’avoir conduit au titre, car c’est un garçon qui brille autant par ses performances que ses qualités humaines. Deux semaines après avoir remporté le Championnat ‘Constructeurs’, c’est également une nouvelle consécration pour notre équipe. Depuis un quart de siècle, Citroën Racing a développé un savoir-faire unique, qui lui a permis de triompher en rallye-raid, en WRC et maintenant en FIA WTCC. Cette stabilité a créé une cohésion qui est la clé de notre réussite dès cette première saison dans la discipline. »

José María López : « Ce qui m’arrive aujourd’hui me procure un sentiment incroyable. Comme toujours, ce sont les remerciements qui me viennent en premier à l’esprit. Merci à ma famille, à tous ceux qui m’ont permis d’avancer dans des moments plus difficiles, et à Citroën qui m’a choisi pour piloter une de ses C-Elysée. Merci à tous les ingénieurs et mécaniciens. Pas seulement ceux qui s’occupent de ma voiture, car nous travaillons tous ensemble. C’est très spécial de gagner sur un des circuits fétiches d’Ayrton Senna. Il a conquis deux titres ici et je suis fier de faire de même. C’est également un honneur de succéder à Juan Manuel Fangio au palmarès Champions du Monde argentins. C’est grâce à lui que notre pays est aussi passionné de sport automobile et je suis fier de faire briller nos couleurs en FIA WTCC.&nb sp;»

Sébastien Loeb : « J’ai pris un très mauvais envol dans la première manche, je me suis trompé en manipulant les boutons de la procédure de départ ! J’étais cinquième en début de course, mais c’est très difficile de trouver l’ouverture sur ce circuit. Je suis resté au contact, à l’affût de la moindre opportunité qui s’est finalement présentée peu avant l’arrivée. C’est bien de monter à nouveau sur le podium. »

Yvan Muller : « C’est un week-end à l’image de ma saison, avec un manque de réussite chronique. Dans la course 1, j’ai vite senti l’arrière qui glissait et la crevaison s’est confirmée après quelques tours. Dans la seconde manche, j’ai pris un bon départ avant de me retrouver derrière Hugo Valente. Ce n’était pas facile de le dépasser, j’ai tenté une attaque qui s’est conclue par une touchette involontaire. »

 

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WTCC



POLE FOR LÓPEZ AS CITROËN SECURE 1-2-3!

Pechito- Separated by less than 0.15 of a second, the three Citroën C-Elysée WTCCs finished first, second and third in qualifying in Suzuka. Jos� �María López notched up his sixth pole position of the season, ahead of Yvan Muller and Sébastien Loeb.

- The Argentine’s performance takes him one step closer to the world title. One fourth-place finish in tomorrow’s races will be enough to see him crowned champion.

The FIA WTCC drivers, who are using the “big” 5.807 km track for the first time, were clearly delighted to be plying their trade on one of the world’s leading circuits. José María López clocked an excellent lap time of 2’06’’987 in Friday’s half-hour practice session. Yvan Muller was a little off the pace on Friday, but showed what he could do the following morning by recording the fastest time in each of the other two free practice sessions.

Despite the red flag being brought out during Q1, all three Citroën drivers made it through to the second qualifying session with ease. Q2, too, went off without a hitch for Yvan Muller and José María López, who quickly rose to the top of the timing screens. Sébastien Loeb, however, had to change his tyres after crashing off. Nevertheless, he managed to snatch third place just before the chequered flag!

The nine-time World Rally Champion continued his good form in Q3, going faster than both Tom Chilton and Hugo Valente on his flying lap. A few moments later, José María López did better still. Last out was Yvan Muller, who looked set to eclipse his teammate, but ended up less than a tenth of a second short.

With this, his sixth pole position of the season, Pechito López has moved a little closer to the FIA WTCC title. One fourth-place finish tomorrow would be enough to see him secure the championship crown, regardless of how Yvan Muller does here and in Macao.

WHAT THEY HAD TO SAY

José María López: “It’s fantastic for Citroën to have achieved another treble in qualifying. It shows just how competitive our C-Elysée WTCC is. This pole position was hard-won. I thought that I would do a little better in Q1 and Q2. But just like in Spa, my teammates gave me some work to do. We made a few changes to the setup for Q3, but I made a few little mistakes in the first sector. I gained in confidence from corner to corner and it was in the third sector that I really made the difference. I’m one step closer to the title, but I’m going to continue to approach the weekend as normally as I can. There is still some uncertainty about tomorrow, particularly as far as the weather goes: it could rain.”

Yvan Muller: “I’m really happy with my second place. I was worried after free practice on Friday, as the car wasn’t working as I would have liked. Thanks to some hard work with my team, we managed to turn things round. In Q3, I tried to attack a little more on bend 15, the fastest on the circuit. It didn’t work and I ended up with exactly the same time as in Q2, give or take 2 thousandths of a second! The races are likely to be very competitive: we’ve got the same cars, we work together, and we know each other’s setups. I hope that we will be able to give Citroën a clean sweep, hopefully not in the same order as today, though!”

Sébastien Loeb: “I made it into Q3 by the skin of my teeth. I tried to get into Tiago Monteiro’s slipstream in Q2, but Mehdi Bennani managed to dart in between us before making a mistake. In trying to avoid him, I crashed off and wrecked my tyres. So I had to go to the pits and get them changed. My Q3 lap was pretty good, until my brakes failed at the last chicane. In qualifying, the slightest error can cost you dear, and the tenth of a second I lost probably cost me pole position.”

 

Romain Grosjean, Lotus F1

FORMULA 1



LOTUS F1 DRIVERS PREPARE FOR THE UNITED STATES GRAND PRIX

ROMAIN GROSJEAN

Is it true that you will ride to Austin on your Harley Davidson motorcycle?

No. I do have a Harley and I will be riding one in Austin before the Grand Prix, but riding a Harley all the way to Austin is not part of my training programme. Though it does sound like fun! At home I have a custom Harley which is one of my favourite vehicles. They’re obviously an iconic US machine so it’s great to be able to ride one in its home country which is what I’ll be doing ahead of the Grand Prix. Maybe all the drivers should ride one for the drivers parade!

What do you think of the Circuit of the Americas?

It looks great and the first time I walked around it in 2012 I thought wow! The gradient up to turn one is really something and it makes for a fun first corner when you’re in the car. It’s a really well presented facility with an interesting circuit layout.

What particular challenges does the Circuit of the Americas present?

It’s quite a balanced circuit in that you don’t need one particular thing over another for the car to perform well. In the first year the challenge was finding the level of grip we want and we did see the same to a certain extent last year too. This year, we should be helped a bit by the race being a couple of weeks earlier, but we’re always wanting more grip!

What do you think of America?

The only times I have visited the US are for the Grands Prix. It’s such a big place which I would love to explore more. Austin is a great city to visit and my crew have told me all about the great bars and live music on offer!

There’s been some recent positive news from the team for 2015?

This is something we’ve known about internally for quite some time and I know the engineering department are very excited. For myself I can’t wait to get to testing next season as that’s when we’ll know if next year’s car is any good.

Why haven’t you announced where you’ll be driving in 2015 yet?

Maybe we think it’s fun to keep the media speculating! Honestly, we’re very close to having something to announce but there’s no pressure on when we say something.

How are you approaching the final races of 2014?

It’s amazing just how quickly this season has passed, even if it seemed a long, hard slog at times. We head to Austin, Brazil and Abu Dhabi determined to get the most we can from the race weekends and also using some of the practice time to evaluate different aspects of the car to gain more data for 2015.

Talking of which, there’s a different nose to be tested in Austin?

The E22Õs nose is pretty distinct so it will be unusual seeing it with something different on the front. This is part of the team’s evaluations for 2015, and the nose is designed to gather information for next year. I’m looking forward to seeing what it looks like, but my main focus is the race weekend.

We received the sad news about Christophe de Margerie this week Ð he was someone you were close to?

He was one of those men that you meet very rarely in a lifetime. I knew him for many years and he believed in me and helped me to achieve my motorsport dream. It was such a tragic accident and my thoughts are with his family, as well as the families of the other victims of the plane crash.

Pastor Maldonado

What are your thoughts of the Circuit of the Americas?

Austin is a good track, it’s a challenging layout which is good to drive and it’s an enjoyable event. The first turn is quite something with its very steep climb and the rest of the lap flows well. The atmosphere at the circuit is really special, even for the first time we visited. It’s great to see the RVs at the side of the track and people staying at the circuit to enjoy the full weekend. The circuit can be a difficult one for tyres and we had some unusual delays and interruptions on the Friday last year so it will be interesting to see what happens this time. Certainly, there can be a variety with the weather and in the past we’ve seen it be quite cold at the start of the day. The race is earlier this season so let’s see how that makes a difference.

How about Austin as a place?

It’s really a fantastic location with a lot to do. It’s certainly the type of city I’d like to visit even if there wasn’t a race there! It’s a really lively place with a lot going on. Great food, great music and great people are three things I think about when we go to Austin. The fans are superb too. It’s only the third time we will visit Austin, but already it’s one event on the calendar that we really look forward to visiting.

What’s your outlook for this race?

Obviously we want to perform better than we did in Sochi. That was a difficult weekend for many reasons. We think the Austin layout should suit our car a bit better so that’s a positive. Hopefully we won’t have any more technical issues. I know we’ll have good support from the fans so we’ll be pushing for a good result.

How was the Sochi debrief?

That was a tough weekend, for sure, but we are used to tough weekends in 2014! As always, there was a lot to learn, we gained a lot of information for how to approach Sochi next season. In Russia this year we lost too much time because of issues which stopped us running over the course of the weekend and that was especially bad for us when it was a new track. You don’t want to lose practice time at any track, but it really hurts at a new one. And no-one ever wants technical issues during qualifying.

How much are you thinking about 2015?

We still have three races left in 2014 so that is our priority, but it’s no secret that we are all looking to 2015 with a lot of excitement. It will be my second season with Lotus F1 Team and we have worked well together in 2014. There will be a lot of changes to the car and the team is very positive about the potential of next year’s chassis. At the end of the season I will get some quality time with my family then I’ll return in 2015 fresh for the next challenge

One back-to-back combo and Abu Dhabi then that’s this season done…

Nineteen races seem to fly by, even when you’re not having the season performance you want. There have been so many changes for this year. Though the year has gone quickly, it still seems like Albert Park was such a long time ago! We have three races left to try to get some more points on the board. We know that won’t be easy with the strength of the competition, but it’s something we still try for. The final three races of 2014 are all great events so we really want to finish as strongly as we can.

ALTITUDE RUNNING FOR THE PEUGEOT RALLY ACADEMY!

RALLYE DU VALAIS



ERC – RALLYE DU VALAIS (23-25 OCTOBER): ALTITUDE RUNNING FOR THE PEUGEOT RALLY ACADEMY!

Before wrapping up its 2014 European Championship campaign on home soil in Corsica early next month, the Peugeot Rally Academy travels to Switzerland this week for the 55th Rallye International du Valais. Craig Breen and Kevin Abbring will be looking to steer the official Peugeot 208 T16s to the car’s second ERC success of the year on the twisty Alpine stages.

The Rallye du Valais: happy hunting ground for Peugeot Sport…

The penultimate round of the 2014 FIA ERC features a total competitive distance of 260km divided into 19 stages around the event’s base in Martigny. Victory for the 208 T16 this weekend would see the car join the 207 S2000 (1st in 2007, 2008, 2009, 2011 and 2012) and the 206 S1600 (1st in 2004) on the list of the Swiss event’s past winners. In addition to the Peugeot Rally Academy pair, there will also be 208 T16s in the hands of Bruno Magalhães and Jonathan Hirschi (HRT Rally Team), plus a Peugeot UK-backed 208 R2 for Chris Ingram (Peugeot UK) in the FIA ERC Junior class. The total number of entries is 83. image

Craig Breen and Scott Martin: still in contention for the le title

Since his victory at the beginning of the season in Greece, Craig Breen has had something of a troubled season. Even so, the Irishman is still in contention for the 2014 title and is particularly buoyed up ahead of the Swiss round. He feels at home on asphalt and will benefit from his knowledge of the rally acquired thanks to the third place he scored last year in the Peugeot Rally Academy’s Peugeot 207 S2000. He is currently 49 points short of the current ERC leader Esapekka Lappi, however, so his only tactic can be to aim for first place. Along with his co-driver Scott Martin, he is pleased with the way last week’s pre-event test went and is confident that he can count on a competitive, reliable package in Switzerland. image

Kevin Abbring: hungry for victory…

The Dutch youngster and his co-driver Sebastian Marshall travel to the event after their only previous participation in 2010 intent on claiming a top result. Kevin Abbring’s ERC record so far this season includes second place in the Azores and 18 stage victories after featuring in the fight for victory on all of his outings. He feels particularly comfortable behind the wheel of the 208 T16, as demonstrated by his RC2 class success on the WRC’s Rallye de France earlier this month, so he is understandably hoping to put the cat among the pigeons once more this weekend. image

Ten victories already for the 208 T16 across Europe and a national title in Italy…

The Peugeot 208 T16 enjoyed an emphatic maiden campaign in the Italian Rally Championship where Peugeot Sport Italia’s Paolo Andreucci took the car to four victories from eight. He clinched his first national crown just days ago on the Rally Due Valli, the final round of the year. The 208 T16, Peugeot Sport’s latest rally challenger, has also enjoyed success in Portugal (with Bruno Magalhães), Denmark (Christian Jensen) and Slovenia (Claudio De Cecco).
FIA Formula 3 European Championship, round 10, race 3, Imola (ITA)

F1Weekly podcast # 666



Clark talks about his deep depression over the fact that Fernando may not be on the grid next season, we have Motorsports Mondial with El Guru and an interview with young American driver Santino Ferrucci and here is some news on Max Verstappen from Hockenheim…

Max Verstappen (Van Amersfoort Racing, 1:32.002 minutes) set the fastest time in first qualifying and thus claimed pole position for the 31st season race of the FIA Formula 3 European Championship. The 17-year-old is one of the three candidates who are battling for second place in the FIA Formula 3 European Championship. On his best lap of the 4.575 kilometres long Hockenheimring Baden-Württemberg, he was 0.018 seconds faster than Lucas Auer (kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport, 1:32.020 minutes). Tom Blomqvist (Jagonya Ayam with Carlin, 1:32.076 minutes), who also still has chances of claiming second place in the drivers’ standings, follows in third place, 0.074 seconds down on pace-setter Verstappen.

Halfway through first qualifying, the battle for pole position became intense: Blomqvist had just claimed the top position from Verstappen and Auer was biding his time in third place. Soon after that, the 20-year-old Austrian moved up into the lead, but Blomqvist and Verstappen also continued to run fast. Six minutes later, the Dutchman succeeded in toppling Auer from the leading position while Blomqvist stayed in third place. This order remained unchanged until the end of qualifying, so that Verstappen secured himself pole position for the first race of the final weekend of the 2014 FIA Formula 3 European Championship.

Italian Antonio Giovinazzi (Jagonya Ayam with Carlin, 1:32.341 minutes) and Jordan King (Carlin, 1:32.379 minutes) from Great Britain in fourth and fifth place also succeeded in keeping the already-crowned FIA Formula 3 European Champion, Frenchman Esteban Ocon (Prema Powerteam, 1:32.414 minutes) at bay. Swede Felix Rosenqvist (kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport, 1:32.485 minutes) ended up seventh from Indonesian Sean Gelael (Jagonya Ayam with Carlin, 1:32.535 minutes), Félix Serrallés (Team West-Tec F3, 1:32.676 minutes) from Puerto Rico and US-American Gustavo Menezes (Van Amersfoort Racing, 1:32.760 minutes) rounded out the top ten.

Max Verstappen (Van Amersfoort Racing): “Qualifying went well. It was pretty close between the three of us in front, but my lap time wasn’t so bad and, of course, I am delighted with my pole position. The track is very demanding for the tyres, so you don’t have many laps to set a fast time. For me, it worked out quite well today.”

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The Premiere Motorsport Podcast