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Old 12th May 2017, 23:26   #1
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Default Formula 1 : 2017 Spanish Grand Prix

All set for the 5th round of the season: Spanish GP @ Circuit de Catalunya

Race Schedule

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Mercedes and Ferrari are separated by just 1 point after 4 races, closest between the leading teams in last 4 years. Similarly Vettel with 2 wins leads the championship contender Hamilton by 13 points, again a first for a non Mercedes driver to lead the championship table since 2013.
Highlight of the 2016 was Verstappen winning his first victory when the leading Mec's wiped each other out of the race on first lap.

Free Practice 1 Results

Formula 1 : 2017 Spanish Grand Prix-fp1.jpg

Free Practice 2 Results

Formula 1 : 2017 Spanish Grand Prix-fp2.jpg

With most of the teams bringing upgrades to their cars in Spain, the improved performance was clearly evident for Mercedes and Renault. Mercedes looked quicker on both one lap and race pace and for the first time this season both the cars featured in the top of list on first day of practice. While Ferrari struggled to match the pace of Mercedes in both the sessions, the gap was less in FP2. There was a theory of them deliberately turning down the engine in order to save it for the future. Number of PU components already used up by the Top 3 teams and off-course Mclaren:

Mercedes
Lewis Hamilton
ICE: 1, TC: 1, MGU-H: 1, MGU-K: 1, ES: 1, CE: 1
Valtteri Bottas
ICE: 1, TC: 1, MGU-H: 1, MGU-K: 1, ES: 1, CE: 2

Red Bull-TAG Heuer
Daniel Ricciardo
ICE: 2, TC: 2, MGU-H: 2, MGU-K: 1, ES: 1, CE: 2
Max Verstappen
ICE: 2, TC: 2, MGU-H: 2, MGU-K: 1, ES: 1, CE: 2

Ferrari
Sebastian Vettel
ICE: 1, TC: 3, MGU-H: 2, MGU-K: 1, ES: 2, CE: 2
Kimi Raikkonen
ICE: 2, TC: 3, MGU-H: 2, MGU-K: 1, ES: 2, CE: 2


McLaren-Honda
Fernando Alonso
ICE: 2, TC: 3, MGU-H: 3, MGU-K: 2, ES: 1, CE: 1
Stoffel Vandoorne
ICE: 2, TC: 5, MGU-H: 5, MGU-K: 2, ES: 3, CE: 3

Fans were disappointed to see their local hero Alonso fail to drive the ill looking Mclaren past first 3 corners in FP1. He did appear in the later part of FP2, but the pace was only good for last position on the chart.

Made using Rubik's Cubes
Formula 1 : 2017 Spanish Grand Prix-alo.jpg
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Old 13th May 2017, 09:30   #2
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Default Re: Formula 1 : 2017 Spanish Grand Prix

Mercedes has brought a lot updates for the European adventure. Lets see if Ferrari can stay close and be in the fight.

Here are the highlights from FP1 and FP2:


Never seen an oil leak in a F1 car like that. Looks sad! Honda is really in doldrums.

The scandanavian flick by Bottas brought back the cheer though!


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Old 13th May 2017, 16:49   #3
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Default Re: Formula 1 : 2017 Spanish Grand Prix

Looks to be another close sparring between Ferrari and Mercedes. Ferrari back on top at final practice with Raikkonen leading Vettel by 2 hundredths of a second.

Vettel seems to be in a spot of bother with his car developing some last minute problems in practice after he set his time.

Spain is the start to the European segment of the F1 season and the segment where the stronger teams sustain themselves while the lesser ones fall behind. However I also think this is largely due to budget issues. While the bigger teams have a sizeable budget to keep developing their packages the smaller ones may have already spent a lion's share of the money in getting ready a competitive package for the start of the season.

Exceptions may be there though like Honda who seem to be spending a huge amounts with very little success.

Drive on,
Shibu.
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Old 13th May 2017, 18:52   #4
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Default Re: Formula 1 : 2017 Spanish Grand Prix

Free Practice 3 Results
Formula 1 : 2017 Spanish Grand Prix-fp3.jpg

Better show by Ferrari compared to yesterday to lead the FP3 session. Both Bottas and Vettel ran into engine problems resulting in limited runs in the session. Bottas missed the initial part of the session due to water leak problems which forced Mercedes to change the power unit in his car and he could run only 7 laps in the last 8 minutes. Vettel too did the same number of laps and stopped in the pit lane just before the start of last run. Ferrari too identified the water leak problem and had to change to power unit before the qualifiers.

Besides all the problems yesterday, Alonso and Mclaren did feature in the top ten.

Provisional Qualifying Classification

Formula 1 : 2017 Spanish Grand Prix-quali.jpg

Hamilton back on the pole position after a poor show in last race. Vettel was almost there, if not for the small mistake in the last sector.
Despite struggling in the practice sessions both the Force India cars will start the race tomorrow from within top 10 on the grid.
What a drive by Alonso to take the 7th spot on the grid.
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Old 13th May 2017, 19:10   #5
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Default Re: Formula 1 : 2017 Spanish Grand Prix

I like the Ferrari resurgence this season but the reliability issues will bite them hard. What a lap from Alonso, take a bow, .

Hope the extended DRS zone will slightly spice up the race tomorrow, given top four cars are so closely matched. I want a different winner this year as well so that the unique record still holds, so Bottas for the victory.
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Old 13th May 2017, 19:17   #6
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If there is one hero of the qualifying today it's Fernando Alonso. Back in 2008 when he was in the ING Renault F1 team with a dog of a car, I mentioned that he dragged that car by the scruff of it's neck and landed it in places where it had no right to be.

He did it again today. McLaren at P7 after the spectacular blow up yesterday was unthinkable. Whether the car is seriously up on pace or whether it is all Alonso will be evident tomorrow. Sticking my neck out I would say it's mostly Alonso.

Missing pole by 5 hundredths of a second after a tepid start to Q3 clearly rankled with Sebastian in the post qualifying interview. The last chicane managed to catch out a lot of drivers during qualifying. Tommorrow's start is going to be interesting.

Force India has managed to out qualify Williams again but might need to eke out a seconds worth of pace from that car to begin to trouble Red Bull.

Liberty is bringing some interesting changes to F1. One was the post qualifying on track interview. Would it give them the impact they are hoping for?

Drive on,
Shibu.

Last edited by shibujp : 13th May 2017 at 19:24. Reason: Removing a redundant image and an out of context emoji :)
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Old 13th May 2017, 22:46   #7
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Default Re: Formula 1 : 2017 Spanish Grand Prix

What a lap by Alonso. He had gone for a game of tennis when the Honda engine gave up its ghost during FP1.

If that McLaren holds up tomorrow, Alonso will be guiding a very long train indeed. I hope it does and let's him take the car to the finish line for the first time this season.

Here is that incredible lap. Just inch perfect!



And both Mercedes and Ferrari are well matched, Vettel made a mistake on sector 3 and Lewis' lap was also not very clean. Cannot wait for the race tomorrow.
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Old 14th May 2017, 10:42   #8
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Default Re: Formula 1 : 2017 Spanish Grand Prix

Wow. Exceptional qualifying from the local hero and what a lap in Q3! Onboard video looks like he's cruising on a practice lap. Super smooth!

Now to only wait for how much fuel the Honda PU needs to save over a race distance.

Big mistake from Vettel in the last sector costing him pole.
Merc and Ferrari alternating positions should open up strategy as overtaking looks improbable.

Looking forward to race to see if Merc have improved their race pace with the updates, though Bottas's pace will be compromised with the older PU he has.

Last edited by Hatari : 14th May 2017 at 10:49.
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Old 14th May 2017, 10:43   #9
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Default Re: Formula 1 : 2017 Spanish Grand Prix

Good lap from Alonso, no doubt. But am I the only one who feels that Vandoorne is simply not good enough for F1 and by comparison, Alonso looks like a driving genius?

I've a feeling that any top driver (Hamilton, Vettel, Verstappen, etc.) can match Alonso's performances in that McLaren.
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Old 14th May 2017, 14:20   #10
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Default Re: Formula 1 : 2017 Spanish Grand Prix

Quote:
Originally Posted by McLaren Rulez View Post
Good lap from Alonso, no doubt. But am I the only one who feels that Vandoorne is simply not good enough for F1 and by comparison, Alonso looks like a driving genius?

I've a feeling that any top driver (Hamilton, Vettel, Verstappen, etc.) can match Alonso's performances in that McLaren.
Really, buddy. Vandoorne not good enough. Alonso is a good driver among the top drivers as you pointed out. More over, since he is the number 1 driver he gets the better equipment as well. He really knows well to manipulate the media, very shrewd, talented as well.

If people like Stroll, Palmer are driving in F1 then Vandoorne is good enough for the drive.
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Old 14th May 2017, 16:48   #11
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Default Re: Formula 1 : 2017 Spanish Grand Prix

Any reliable live streaming links for today's race?
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Old 14th May 2017, 19:23   #12
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Well! Vettel did all that he could on the track, but Ferrari blew it in the pits. First pit stop was too early, and the second was a little too late.

Ferrari didn't have to be so aggressive with the first stop when Vettel had track position. And the second stop for Vettel was made a little too late. Should have taken under virtual SC and kept that cushion of 23 or so seconds to Lewis.

The race became boring once Lewis took the position back from Vettel on track.

And what is Massa' problem when Vettel is coming to lap? This is the second race in a row now. I really think the Brazilian should get a reprimand from Charlie.

Bad luck for Kimi and Bottas to retire from the race. And a nice gesture from Kimi to make the day better for his young fan.
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Old 14th May 2017, 19:37   #13
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Default Re: Formula 1 : 2017 Spanish Grand Prix

What a gripping race .

After a long, long time, I'm seeing a team-mate being used to slow a competitor down (Bottas on Vettel) and also dummy pitstops (Mercedes just when the virtual safety car was announced).

Hamilton & Vettel both drove like true champions. Mercedes' strategy was hard to understand at first, but they clearly knew what they were doing.

This is going to be an epic season!!!
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Old 14th May 2017, 20:27   #14
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The dummy Vettel sold to Bottas was one of the best moves in a long time. Absolutely great pass. However the 4 seconds that Bottas held up Hamilton for proved to be crucial for Hamilton as he almost gained a place at Vettel's pit stop. In hindsight the Bottas cost Vettel more than 4 seconds as without Bottas, Vettel would have been able to build up a bigger gap on the soft tyres.

But Mercedes were spot on on strategy and though Hamilton had his doubts, the result proved otherwise.

The race might have looked totally different had Verstappen's move on Raikkonen and Bottas stuck which would have pushed him to 3rd with Raikkonen and Bottas behind him. As it was wretched luck for Raikkonen and Vestappen. Given the impact that Bottas had on the race the leader board would have looked quite different too.

Sergio Perez looks like a real team leader and Ocon is really doing an incredibly great job to help the team to a fourth place in the constructors. Would be really great to have see this team fighting for the championship in the next few years. It would be a real encouragement to privateer teams to see how much can be achieved on a limited budget. And not withstanding his business related tribulations Mallya seems to be doing something right here.

Cautiously optimistic on McLaren. I hope they have being given their Mojo back by Honda.

Drive on,
Shibu.
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Old 14th May 2017, 21:17   #15
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Default Re: Formula 1 : 2017 Spanish Grand Prix

When was the last time only 3 cars finished on lead lap? Such was the pace of Vettel and Hamilton up front. This is what happens when you have two different teams fighting at the top, pushing each other to the limit. I just hope some luck shines on Kimi and he can join the battle too.

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Originally Posted by deetjohn View Post
And a nice gesture from Kimi to make the day better for his young fan.
That made the day for all Kimi fans around the world!
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