A Review of the Year: F1 – September & October

Part four of a review of the year (2013) in Formula One, following part one (January & February), part two (March, April & May), and part three (June, July & August).

September 2013 

At the start of September, McLaren celebrated their official 50th anniversary. The H Duct posted 50 posts over 50 days, celebrating the team and its achievements and personnel. The team held celebrations at the McLaren Technology Centre and commemorated the occasion at the Italian Grand Prix.

In driver news, Red Bull confirmed the identity of Mark Webber’s replacement. Daniel Ricciardo will make the move from Toro Rosso to Red Bull for 2014. Elsewhere, Force India confirmed that they had signed GP2 driver James Calado as their third driver.

Lewis Hamilton, Sebastian Vettel and Fernando Alonso topped the Italian Grand Prix practice sessions. Vettel took pole and another race win.

Felipe Massa took to Twitter to announce that he would be leaving Ferrari at the end of the season. “For next year, I want to find a team that can give me a competitive car to win many more races and challenge for the championship which remains my greatest objective,” he said.

Ferrari followed up Massa’s announcement with the news that Kimi Raikkonen would be returning. The Finn, who returned to Formula One in 2012 after two seasons away, won his world championship with the team in 2007.

The Marina Bay Circuit in Singapore was altered before the race, removing the infamous ‘Singapore Sling’ at Turn 10. The changes lowered the overall lap-times.

Lewis Hamilton topped the first practice session in Singapore but it was Sebastian Vettel who dominated the weekend – topping the remainder of practice, qualifying and winning the race.

Caterham announced a three year contract extension to their Renault deal.

A draft 2014 calendar was posted by the FIA. It included races in Russia, Mexico and New Jersey; including an unprecedented triple header between Monaco, New Jersey and Canada.

Russian driver Sergey Sirotkin made his Formula One debut at a display in Sochi, home of the new Russian Grand Prix.

October 2013

Marussia confirmed that they would be retaining Jules Bianchi for the 2014 season. The rookie driver improved on his debut, regularly out-qualifying and out-racing his team-mate and the Caterham drivers.

Lewis Hamilton topped the first two practice sessions in Korea but Sebastian Vettel took over in Free Practice Three. He then went on to qualify in pole position and win yet another race.

Sauber extended their deal with Ferrari into 2014 and beyond.

Sauber also announced that for practice in Japan, they would have Kimiya Sato as their reserve driver.

Codemasters launched the latest version of their Formula One game – F1 2013. The game features classic content from the 80s and 90s, including the FW207b, Alan Jones and Brands Hatch.

Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel topped the first two practice sessions for the Japanese Grand Prix. Mark Webber topped FP3 and took pole position but it was his team-mate, Vettel, who won the race.

Maria de Villota, a former Marussia reserve driver, sadly passed away aged 33. She sustained serious injuries after a testing crash in 2012, and died as a result of them.

Toro Rosso confirmed that Jean-Eric Vergne would remain with the team for 2014 and be partnered by Daniil Kvyat.

1,571 – the number of career points that saw Fernando Alonso become the highest scoring Formula One driver ever.

Sebastian Vettel topped every session in India and stormed to his fourth championship in style.

Advertisements

The Young Driver Test in Numbers

Last week, ten teams took to the track at Silverstone for three days of running at the Young Driver Test. Mercedes were the notable absentees after their ban for their role in Pirelli’s tyre test after the Spanish Grand Prix. The test was an opportunity for young drivers, in terms of little Grand Prix experience, to get behind the wheel. However, because of the recent problems Pirelli have encountered with their tyres, current race drivers were allowed to take part, but in a restricted role. Testing of new components and parts was prohibited for race drivers, but they were allowed the chance to test new Pirellis. Read on for a comprehensive breakdown of the laps and lap-times that made up the test.

Lap-times by day (per driver)

Day 1

YDTday1

Day 2

YDTday2

Day 3

YDTday3

Combined Driver Lap-times

YDTalltimes

Fastest to Slowest (by driver)

YDTtimes

Fastest to Slowest (by team)

YDTteamfastestlaps

Nationalities Represented

YDTnationality

Laps

Laps completed (by dayYDTlapsperday)

Laps completed (by team)

YDTteamlaps

Laps completed (by driver)

YDTlaps

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Drivers in Attendance

There were ten current race drivers present at the test, with others such as Mark Webber and Kimi Raikkonen scheduled to take part but pulling out. Sebastian Vettel led the way for Red Bull, setting the fastest time of the test on day three but less than a tenth clear of Daniel Ricciardo. Riccardo appeared for both Red Bull and Toro Rosso, on what was regarded as an audition for the available Red Bull seat, and he impressed with his times. Other 2013 race drivers in attendance included Pastor Maldonado, Nico Hulkenberg, Jules Bianchi and Charles Pic.

Red Bull, Ferrari, Force India, Sauber, Williams, Marussia, Toro Rosso and Caterham all had at least one 2013 race driver present while McLaren and Lotus left it completely to their test drivers. Both Adrian Sutil and Paul di Resta got running in the Force India, as did Daniel Ricciardo and Jean-Eric Vergne in the Toro Rosso. James Calado (Force India) and Davide Rigon (Ferrari) both appeared on all three days of the test.