|Monaco GP – A challenge for seventy years|
| At the previous round of the championship in Barcelona, where Fernando Alonso produced yet another fantastic drive in his Ferrari F2012 to take second place, the majority of teams had introduced new packages to coincide with the first European race of the season. If some elements had failed to deliver a clear picture of their benefits, there was usually talk of waiting to see how they would perform in Canada. Had the designers and engineers forgotten that, before going to Montreal, the F1 circus stops off at its most famous venue in Monte Carlo? Not at all, it's just that the Monaco Grand Prix throws up such a unique technical challenge it simply does not fit into the overall picture of how the season is evolving. 'You have to set the car up quite differently for Monaco,' explains Scuderia Ferrari's Technical Director, Pat Fry. 'On the street circuit you don't attack all the corner entries as hard as you would on a normal circuit, because the barriers are so close to the track at the entry and exit. However, trying to get the right car balance is as difficult as at the other venues.'
The Monaco Grand Prix is older than the World Championship itself and in fact it celebrates its seventieth birthday this year. One element that has not changed in all that time is that the lap is short and very slow, the slowest on the calendar in fact. 'This means it is more about downforce and less about efficiency and engine power,'' continues Fry. 'You need as much downforce as possible and a car that behaves consistently.' Even if Monaco is unique, many of the updates introduced on the F2012 in Spain were aimed specifically at generating aerodynamic downforce and will therefore prove useful this weekend. 'As a result of a lot of work in the wind tunnel and on the track, we had a lot of updates including a different front wing, floor, turning vanes, brake ducts and a new rear wing. All in all, we're reasonably happy with the update we made, but obviously we've still got a long way to go and we have to keep on working at a similar rate. In fact, we will have a few more small updates this weekend to add a bit more downforce to the car and, as usual this season, it will be interesting to see how each car uses its tyres.'
It is true that tyre behaviour has been the single most influential factor on the evolution of the five races so far this year and Monaco's unique characteristics will not make this weekend's race immune to that. 'We have seen that just a small change in track temperature can have a large effect on tyre performance,' maintains the English engineer. 'And apart from this sensitivity to temperature, they are also quite sensitive to the way the drivers use them. In a race where three pit stops would be considered the norm, if the driver is very very careful on the rear tyres, you might be able to keep them in good enough shape to do just two stops. But if you push hard on the tyres they degrade and a driver can damage them a little bit by pushing. So, when you are fighting in traffic, you take more out of the tyres than you would do if you're running in clean air.' Given that Monaco is synonymous with traffic, whether or not a race is taking place, finding that elusive clean air is the main challenge for the strategists. 'Monaco is a short lap, so your thinking time is reduced,' says Fry turning to the subject of race planning. 'While you look at all the usual factors such as tyres degradation, you have to be very aware of trying to keep the drivers out of traffic so as to try and give them a clear run. So if you are starting from the mid-field it's always a challenge, therefore starting at the front of the grid makes the job a little bit easier.'
After two pairs of back-to-back races to kick start the season, we are now back in the classic routine of a race every fortnight all the way through to the Germany-Hungary double-header at the end of July. Therefore, while for Fry and the team the immediate focus is on Monaco, the work never stops on developing the car for each coming race. 'In the medium term we are constantly driving to bring in updates, as indeed is the case for all teams,' reveals Fry. 'For Canada, we will have a different rear wing and front wing package, which will deliver a slightly different downforce level for this circuit. Work on the exhaust system is ongoing and we have new versions to test. Having learned a lot at the start of the year, we were able to address some of our problems at the Mugello test prior to the Spanish GP and I think now we have a good understanding of our car, trying to add performance to it in a constant drive that will go all the way through to the final race.'
|MY YACHT™ CONCOURS MAKES WAVES IN MONTEREYLos Angeles, CA August 21st, 2014 – In a busy automotive week full of parties held in houses, tents, and parking lots, My Yacht Group's Concours event created a uniquely prestigious evening aboard Motor Yacht Acania, the 136-foot superyacht originally commissioned by Al Capone in 1929. Moored in Breakwater Cove Marina for the second year, the cream of the motoring world, discerning HNW guests, Olympic athletes , and distinguished brand partners led by Vontobel Swiss Wealth Advisors AG en....|
|ROLEX MONTEREY MOTORSPORTS REUNION : LA DOLCE VITAThere is a direct translation for 'the good life' in just about every language, and today la dolce vita pervaded the air at practice sessions for the Rolex Monterey Motorsport Reunion where Italian car manufacturer Maserati, celebrating its 100th anniversary, is this year's distinguished marque. Nearly 550 authentic and historic race cars, split into 15 different competition groups, roared through the turns and straights of Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, warming up for weekend racing that will dete....|
|JD CLASSICS AT THE SILVERSTONE CLASSIC◾JD Classics entered four cars into the Silverstone Classic, one of the world's biggest classic motor racing festivals|
◾The line-up featured JD Classics' 1974 Cologne Capri Works, 1959 Costin Lister and 1954 Cooper T33 Jaguar
◾There were class wins for the Cologne Capri Works plus an excellent second place for the Costin Lister
◾In 2014, JD Classics has now scored victories at the Monaco Historique, Goodwood 72nd Members' Meeting, Donington Historic Festival and Snetterton Autosport Three Hou....
|Hungarian GP – A gamble that paid offMarco Mattiacci: 'It was a great race and very pleasing to see our team fight back from an extremely complicated Saturday. Kimi and Fernando demonstrated just what they are capable of and the whole team was up to the task. However, this result is just a step on a journey which started a few months ago. Fernando's second place is a confidence booster and a sign that the major effort everyone is making to bring Ferrari back to the top is moving in the right direction, however we have to be realist....|
|Working even harderMaranello, 28 July – Scuderia Ferrari got back to Maranello from Hungary in high spirits, after securing its best result of the season so far, with Fernando Alonso finishing second and Kimi Raikkonen, who finished sixth, despite a rather dismal Saturday. Both men delivered performances worthy of their world champion status and the team made brave and well executed decisions when it came to sorting out the strategy for the two F14 Ts. The result was a valuable morale booster, coming as it ....|
|AUDI STARTS SECOND HALF OF DTM SEASON WITH BIG AIMS◾Sights set on clinching first win of the season at Spielberg (Austria)|
◾Audi driver Mattias Ekström in striking distance of top of the standings
◾Dieter Gass, Head of DTM: 'In good position to attack'
Ingolstadt, July 28, 2014 – In the DTM, Spielberg stands for thrilling races and enthusiastic fans in a beautiful setting. Next weekend (August 1 to 3) the circuit in Styria is to become the venue of the Audi squad's first victory this season. Motorsport fans will get to watch the qual....
|DANIEL WINS HUNGARIAN THRILLERBUDAPEST, Hungary – Daniel took a thrilling second career win with a brilliant drive at the Hungarian Grand Prix that saw him pass both Lewis Hamilton and Fernando Alonso the final four laps. Sebastian, meanwhile finished seventh after an early safety car period compromised his chances of capitalizing on a front-row start.|
The race began in wet conditions, with the field opting to start on intermediate tires. Starting from fourth, Daniel lost two positions into Turn 1 in the tricky con....