Motorsports Mondial

Bird Landing in the Marina

Sam Bird, the impressive 2010 GP2 debutant from England, has feathered a deal with Mercedes Grand Prix team to participate in Young Driver test at the Yas Marina circuit, after the curtain falls on the F1 season November 14.

Sam scored his maiden GP2 win at Monza in September.

“Sam has done an impressive job in the GP2 Series during his first season. We are very pleased that Sam will be joining Mercedes for the Young Driver test next month and are confident that he will provide the team with the essential consistency and feedback we require,” said Ross Brawn.

The ART Grand Prix GP2 driver had his first taste of F1 machinery in 2007 with Williams. The GP2 season also concludes in Abu Dhabi. Sam will be looking to improve on his current fifth overall position in the championship.

The 23-year old driver from Roehampton raced in Formula BMW, Formula Renault and Formula 3 before signing with Nicholas Todt-owned ART Grand Prix team for the GP2 Series this season.

— Nasir Hameed

Motorsports Mondial


Standing tall and racing with success to be his own man is Adrien Tambay, the fast ‘fils’ of ex-Can-Am champion and Grand Prix winner for Ferrari, Patrick Tambay.

The younger Tambay was born on February 25, 1991 in the city of lights and has been shining on race tracks since jumping in a kart at the tender age of five.

He made his single-seater debut in the Formula BMW Europe series in 2007 and won Rookie of the Year award with two wins, and nine podium finishes, placing a very impressive fourth overall in the championship.

More wins followed in the 2008 season, this time on both sides of the Atlantic as Adrien won both the opening races of the season at Barcelona, and a round of Formula BMW USA at Road America. He was third in European iteration of the series. In 2009, Adrien raced with ART Grand Prix team in the F3 Euro series, and this season saw action and victories in two very competitive series.

F1weekly would like to thank him for taking his time to answer questions on a busy and winning season.

Q: How emotional and important was victory at Imola in AutoGP, on a track where your father won the 1983 San Marino GP in a Ferrari?

A: “It was a great moment, I nearly cried on the in-lap after the race. For my father, it meant a lot. For me as well, and I am pretty happy of the strong race we had there.”

Q: You were leading the race at Magny-Cours when a fuel pump issue robbed you of a home win less than two laps from the finish, did you say some choice words on the team radio before the car came to a halt?

A: “It actually was not a fuel pump issue but a human mistake, one of the guys made a mistake when putting the fuel in and just didn’t put enough of it. That’s racing, but obviously I was pissed off. Not to this guy, everybody can do mistakes, just in general because without these mistakes we would have been P2 in the championship.”

Q: How does the AutoGP car compare in terms of performance and handling with an F3 car you raced last year?

A: “It’s much faster!! And it’s more fun, a lot of power. Nearly three times more than in the F3, it’s definitely a good car to learn for GP2 and F1.”

Q: In terms of competition and driver development which series would you recommend, AutoGP or F3 Euro series?

A: “This year, definitely AutoGP, there were not enough drivers in F3 Euro series, and the AutoGP had a great level of strong drivers coming from F1, GP2, GP3, F3, 3.5, such as Grosjean, Pantano, Guerrieri, Reid, Filippi, Piscopo and I am missing a lot of them…”

Q: You had a brief but winning experience in GP3; please tell us about your victory at Spa in the rain?

A: “No words for it, really amazing. It was a great race. Strong gamble and strong performance to keep the car on track and defend my 1st place with slicks on a wet track with all the others on wet tires.”

Q: Victory was judged “Best race of the season,” what did that mean to you and your team, Manor?

A: “It meant a lot. The team did a great job and it’s a great award, mostly for all the guys at Virgin/Manor. I had only two guest appearances to put on a great performance and that’s what we did, so obviously very satisfied about that.”

Q: In your ‘younger’ days you won a Formula BMW race at Road America, your impression of this wonderful track?

A: “It’s still one of my favourites, I love it. To me it’s the American Spa.”

Q: Your father won the Can-Am championship; do you have any desire to race in the US, especially the Indy 500?

A: “For sure, that’s something I will keep in mind for the future, I’d like to go racing in the States again, and may the opportunity come to me.”

Q: Your thoughts on the Korean GP and who do you think will be world champion?

A: “I have the feeling Alonso and Hamilton are the men. It’s gonna be a great end to the season. On the Korean GP, we saw once more that RedBull has the pace, but cannot really get it in the end; it’s a real shame for them.”

Q: Which European city has the best sushi, your favorite dish?

A: “I have to say Paris, my favourite city, where I was born!”

For information on Adrien and his racing agenda please visit

— Nasir Hameed

F1weekly podcast # 468

F1weekly podcast number 468

Happy Birthday Bernie! We wish you all the best.

Motorsports Mondial with Nasir Hameed and…

This weeks featured Interview: Yannick Dalmas

Yannick Dalmas (born 28 July 1961 in Le Beausset, Var)  former racing driver from France. He participated in 49 Formula One Grands Prix, debuting on 18 October 1987, but qualified for only 24 of them. His best result in F1 was a 5th place at the 1987 Australian Grand Prix, but he was not eligible for World Championship points at that race. His F1 career was blighted by his health issues, towards the end of 1988, Dalmas was diagnosed with Legionellosis which understandably caused him to miss the final two races. He recovered before the start of 1989 but his illness had clearly affected him.

After the 1990 Formula One Season, Dalmas left the series and began racing in Le Mans Prototypes. There he found much more success, winning the 24 Hours of Le Mans four times (in 1992, 1994, 1995 and 1999), each with different teams.

In 1994, Dalmas made a brief return to Formula One with Larrousse, but only entered two races. He crashed in Italy, and finished two laps off the lead in Portugal.


Motorsports Mondial

Photo: LAT

Light, camera and little action: The inaugural Korean Grand Prix witnessed the slaughtering of Red Bulls and the rise of the Red Matador. The safety car led more laps than race winner Fernando Alonso. The Spaniard is not complaining though. He now will take a stab at his third world title.

With only two races to go the championship may be influenced by decisions made in the Austrian mountains. While the world wants Red Bull to throw its weight behind Webber and give wings to his championship efforts, the words of wisdom from powers that be still talk of both drivers in with a chance of winning the championship.

Sebastian Vettel, the Chosen One, has the pace and package to win the remaining two races but can still lose the big prize to the Oracle of Oviedo.

Alonso and Lewis Hamilton were both victims of their own making in 2007.

Three seasons later Alonso could again fall victim to Hamilton if the McLaren driver finishes ahead and take precious points from his ex-teammate in Brazil (and we have seen this movie before) or in the final race in Abu Dhabi.

Webber is left out to grill his own championship.

Imagine the scenario, Red Bull wins the final two races and championship goes to Ferrari driver. This will only result in some serious yoddling in the Austrian mountains during the off-season.

— Nasir Hameed

Motorsports Mondial

Grand Prix Plus: It’s all about the passion, and the knowledge that is second to none. Launched in 2007, Grand Prix plus is an e-magazine which is a treasure trove of motor racing action on the track, behind the scene stories and stunning photography.

Annual subscription on will not only provide you with “a 77-page e-magazine” five hours after every race but you will also get a pre-season Preview and an in-depth End of Year Review, plus access to their archive which will allow download of any and all issues since 2007.

The Crew

Joe Saward: From covert operations to Coventry, Joe is an acknowledged master. Joe has been following and covering motor racing since he was a student. He was Grand Prix Editor of Autosport before moving to Paris, from where he launched the award-winning Business of Motorsport e-newsletter in 1994. He was also behind the launch of

David Tremayne: A passionate and walking encyclopedia of motor racing history, David has been reporting on Grand Prix racing for over two decades and has written over 40 books on motorsport. Some of his work includes The Lost Generation: The Brilliant but Tragic Lives of Rising British F1 Stars Roger Williamson, Tony Brise and Tom Pryce. Barrichello: In the Spirit of Senna and the Shadow of Schumacher.

Peter Nygaard: Peter saw a better and more exciting career with a lens than with a law degree, which he pursued at Copenhagen University. The Dane with his Canon has been marching on F1 fields since 1982 and has shot at over 350 events. His Grand Prix Photo studio in Haslev has an extensive archive of racing images from the first decade of Formula 1

Please visit and check out the free sample covering the Hungarian Grand Prix. You will not be disappointed.

— Nasir Hameed

F1weekly podcast # 467

Yin-Yang from Yeongyam

Photo: AFP

Korean cuties: After much concern whether the inaugural Korean Grand Prix will take place, the dust has now settled on the event. The Tilke-designed Korean International Circuit has seating capacity for 130,000 race fans; they get a good view of the circuit and the pit lane.

The rain delayed race turned the championship fight into a new battle for the remaining two races. Sebastian Vettel’s chances of becoming the youngest world champion flamed out with an engine-kablamo. Defending champion Jenson Button suffered his own Korean crisis and failed to finish in the top ten.

Photo: AP

Jumping Jack Fernando: Unloved at McLaren but showered with full affection and ‘amore’ at Scuderia Ferrari, Spaniard Fernando Alonso now leads the championship after win number three in the last four races. He may now enjoy the support of three drivers in his quest for third world title; Massa, fully aware since Hockenheim that he drives for ‘the team’, and the two Red Bull drivers; the Austrian-owned team still maintains both drivers are free to fight for the championship.

The Woking civil war of 2007 handed the world championship to a red brigade warrior. If the internal-meltdown continues in Milton Keynes and Webber is not made the Mark-ed man for championship, history may repeat itself in the season finale at Abu Dhabi.

Photo: AP

How to win races and throw away a championship: This priceless motorsports novel was first released in 1986 by Williams Grand Prix Publishing, co-authored by Sir Frank Williams and Patrick Head. Set in Australia on a good year that exploded into disaster, which only a Professor can explain.

The second version of this hard to believe but fact based novel was released in late 2007 by Woking WordPress. The family feud came live to a worldwide audience in Budapest. The final chapter was written, he prefers not to speak anyway, by the man who came in from the cold, as in Espoo, Finlandia cold.

The third iteration of this novel, The 2010 Red Bull Bulletin, may go to press immediately after the season finale on November 14 in Abu Dhabi. The corporate slogan is “Red Bull Gives You Wings.” The slogan turned into corporate shenanigan at Silverstone, at least in the mind of Mark Webber.

If you have the best package all season long, with both drivers dominating qualifying and races, and you still do not win the championship there is something terribly wrong with the picture.

Yes, Vettel has been their baby since he was in diapers but racing reality is very clear; Mark Webber depends on their support as he is most likely their only hope of preventing a driver from a rival team from becoming world champion.

Webber, “not bad for a number two driver,” and after years in uncompetitive machinery, will be a very deserving world champion. The class act he is, Red Bull can count on him to return the favor next year and help “Seb” weave his own web on a world title.

Photo: AP

Rubinho: He has been on four wheels, two legs and now two wheels.

The Brazilian again had some issues with his former Ferrari teammate, Michael Schumacher, during qualifying. The most experienced driver in F1 always mange to smile in all situations.

— Nasir Hameed

Racing and deep kimchi regards from Cali.


Photo: Reuters

Jenson and excess baggage.

Photo: Reuters

“My brother is very famous.”