Vettel Puts Focus On Climate Change At Miami GP
Follow live news and reaction as the world of F1 continues to react to the results at the Miami Grand Prix, while also beginning to look ahead at how teams can improve for the Spanish Grand Prix next time out.
Max Verstappen closed the gap between himself and Charles Leclerc in the drivers’ championship with a win in the US, joined on the podium by both Ferrari cars – but questions have been asked over whether they made it too easy for the reigning champion to take the flag for Red Bull for the second consecutive race.
Meanwhile, Lewis Hamilton is coming under pressure after showing post-race disappointment and suggesting Mercedes are not any faster than they were at the start of the season, although the seven-time world champion has vowed to fight on, saying that Mercedes “won’t be stopped in their tracks.”
Another multiple world champion – four-time winner Sebastian Vettel – is considering quitting the sport over climate change, having worn a t-shirt drawing attention to the issue at the Miami GP.
With ten days to go until the next Grand Prix, it’s all about analysing the data, recovery time and making improvements ahead of the next installment in the 2022 season.
Follow all the build-up to the F1 Spanish Grand Prix below:
F1 faces ‘mission’ to find next US racer as popularity grows, claims Lewis Hamilton
But there is not a single American driver on the grid in 2022, something which Hamilton feels may be a result of athletes choosing other sports.
Speaking at the Miami GP, he said: “It doesn’t really surprise me. I think it’s perhaps more a cultural thing. You know, here in the States it’s the NFL, NBA. It’s NASCAR, IndyCar.
“In my 16 years of coming over here it’s been such a slow build, trying to bring awareness of the sport. Unfortunately, the Americans have to wake up at odd times in order to watch a Grand Prix.”
The USA has not had a F1 world champion since Mario Andretti claimed the title way back in 1978.
Michael Jones13 May 2022 14:11
Max Verstappen labels Red Bull ‘hit and miss’ over reliability record
Max Verstappen has labelled Red Bull “hit and miss” over its reliability record despite winning the Miami Grand Prix.
“I mean, of course, now my side, I had a lot of issues on Friday, which compromises your weekend, and especially [qualifying],” Verstappen said. “Of course, [in the race] everything went well with the start but it also could have been the other way around and then you of course can say like, well, fair enough, because if you missed almost whole Friday, what can you do about it?
“So we just have to nail down a really positive weekend without issues. I think of course, Imola, we had that, but it’s still a bit of a hit and miss too much. So we just have to make sure that we are more reliable and more on top of things.
“But as you can see the car is quick. I’m very happy about that, I mean, if you would be slow and reliable, that’s probably also not a good thing.”
Michael Jones13 May 2022 14:00
Mercedes confirm long-term commitment to Formula One
Mercedes-Benz Group chairman Ola Kallenius has pledged “we will remain” in Formula One as they look forward to the carbon-neutral future of the sport.
In four years, new engine regulations will make the cars power units more reliant on electric power and reduce the sport’s carbon dioxide emissions.
And Kallenius insists Mercedes are looking to the future of F1 as something they want to stay heavily involved in.
Speaking at the Financial Times Future of the Car Summit, he said: “We have decided to go down this path of decarbonisation. It is the only decision we can make, and the same goes for Formula 1.
“The next engine regulations will give much more importance to the electric part, and there is a clear commitment to make Formula 1 CO2 neutral.”
Michael Jones13 May 2022 13:53
Lewis Hamilton claims poor form won’t stop Mercedes in their tracks
Lewis Hamilton has vowed to fight on after a difficult start to the 2022 F1 season, saying that poor form won’t stop Mercedes in their tracks.
Mercedes have lacked pace so far this term – badly trailing front-runners Red Bull and Ferrari, while struggling with ‘porpoising’ as the car continues to bounce on the track.
Hamilton currently lies sixth in the drivers’ standings, a mammoth 68 points behind champions leader Charles Leclerc, and also trails his team-mate George Russell, who sits fourth.
But the seven-time world champion isn’t quitting on the season and is adamant that eventual success will be all the sweeter given the problems
“I love working with this team,” said Hamilton of Mercedes. “Being in a team is such a privilege and working with so many people towards a common goal.
“And everyone lifted each other up. Incredible how supportive everyone has been through the difficult times, and then we’ve had the most incredible times together.
“So, you know, a couple of bad races is not going to stop us in our tracks. This is where we unite: this is where we learn more about ourselves as individuals; this is where we grow the most. And it makes that eventual success – which I have no doubts we will eventually get to – taste even better.”
Michael Jones13 May 2022 13:41
Vettel defends Formula 1 when questioned over climate change
Sebastian Vettel’s biggest obstacle in addressing climate change is his role as a Formula 1 driver and the seemingly hypocritical viewpoint he speaks from.
Formula 1 is one of the biggest gas-guzzling sports in the world as 20 cars are fuelled for each race, each qualifying session, each practice session. The sport jet sets all around the world and relys heavily on fossil fuels for its entertainment but Vettel defended F1 by saying that it also played a positive role in society.
“On the other hand, you know, we were entertaining people during Covid,” he said. “We were one of the first ones to start again, when everybody’s heads were about to explode.
“I’m not saying Formula 1 has this huge position in the world to deliver entertainment. There’s plenty of people – if you talk about entertainment, sports, culture, comedy – a lot of people who couldn’t perform, and a lot of people missed that. And I think if we didn’t have that, in general, we’d probably go mad.”
The sport is also taking big steps to become more sustainable. The hybrid engines used in the F1 cars are already the most efficient in the world, they have made a revolutionary step forward in thermal efficiency which is the measure of converting fuel energy to power and the sport has plans to go net-zero carbon by 2030.
To ensure this Formula 1 is constantly working on the efficiency of the engine – the thermal efficiency on F1 cars is more than 50% which is up from the 30% or so of a standard road-going petrol engine – and it plans to introduce fully sustainable, carbon-neutral fuels with the new engines in 2026.
The sport’s bosses argue that there will still be millions of petrol- and diesel-engined cars on the roads after 2030 and that using sustainable fuels would have a dramatic effect on reducing global carbon emissions.
Michael Jones13 May 2022 13:32
‘Countries need to move away from fossil fuels’ says Vettel
Speaking on his desire to tackle the climate crisis Aston Martin’s Sebastian Vettel called on individual countries around the world to shift away from relying on fossil fuels for their energy needs and make a bigger step towards renewable sources of energy.
“Action should have been taken a long time ago,” he said. “We shouldn’t depend on prices we don’t dictate.
“How do we source our energy? In the UK, you have a mixture of gas, coal and oil; Germany is very dependent on Russia and potentially in trouble. What do we do if Russia turns the tap off? We shouldn’t be as dependent.
“We have to shift into the next gear, not just for the reason of becoming independent but also to look after the bigger picture – that we live on a planet that’s as enjoyable as it is today.
“We should think of ‘peace energy’ or ‘freedom energy’, which is renewable energy. That is the future, not just as a way of protecting people who can’t afford bills but also to protect against the future.”
Michael Jones13 May 2022 13:22
Vettel questions Formula 1 career in face of climate change
Ex-Formula 1 world champion Sebastian Vettel has become a campaigner on environmental issues in recent times and made an appearance on BBC Quesion Time where he questioned whether racing in F1 is the right thing to do in the light of the global climate crisis.
Vettel wore a T-shirt at last weekend’s Miami Grand Prix which highlighted the threat of rising sea levels around the Florida city and is also passionate about on human rights and LGBTQ+ issues.
On Question Time he said: “It’s my passion to drive a car. Every time I step in the car, I love it. When I get out of the car, of course I’m thinking as well: ‘Is this something we should do, travel the world, wasting resources?’”
The 34-year-old acknowledged that he was a ‘hypocrite’ to speak about environmental concerns in his position as an F1 driver but said he asked himself questions about protecting the planet “every day”.
“We need to stop being dependent [on fossil fuels], and we can, because there are solutions in place,” Vettel said.
“You know, in Britain, you have this sort of goldmine you’re sitting on, which is wind, and you have the ability to increase your energy supply with wind power, solar. Every country has its strengths and weaknesses.
“If you go to Austria, they have the Alps and they have water, they can pump it up, store it, take it back down. It’s something that I’m asking myself. There’s certain things that are in my control, and certain things are not.
“There’s things that I do because I feel I can do them better. Do I take the plane every time? No, not when I can take the car. But there’s certain things in my control, and certain things outside.”
Michael Jones13 May 2022 13:11
‘Is this something we should do?’: Sebastian Vettel questions F1 career over climate change
Four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel admitted he has questioned whether he should retire from Formula One amid concerns over climate change.
Speaking on BBC’s Question Time, the Aston Martin driver, 34, said he is a “hypocrite” for dovetailing his environmental campaign while continuing to race in F1.
Vettel wore a T-shirt ahead of last weekend’s inaugural Miami Grand Prix which read: “Miami 2060. First Grand Prix under water. Act now or swim later.”
Michael Jones13 May 2022 13:00
‘Lack of pace’ cost Tsunoda points in Miami
AlphaTauri’s Yuki Tsunoda was disappointed that he couldn’t keep up the pace in the Miami Grand Prix and add a second consecutive points finish to his tally.
He started the race in ninth but dropped out of the points and claimed 12th by the end of Sunday’s GP. The Japanese driver had hoped to add to his P7 result from Imola but he fell from P9 to P12 within the first 10 laps, before he pitting and dropping to 19th.
A second stop for to swap to soft tyres during the late caution saw Tsunoda recover to 13th before being promoted one place thanks to Daniel Ricciardo’s five-second penalty for leaving the track.
“From Lap 1, just no grip at all,” said Tsunoda after the race. “I just really struggled to just keep up the pace and I got overtaken quite a lot. After that, even in free air, struggled to increase my own pace, just no pace at all today.
“It’s the complete opposite to last time [at Imola], so frustrating – so it is what it is, we have to keep moving forward.”
The team’s Technical Director Jody Egginton added that Tsunoda’s soft-tyred stint was his strongest, and the team need to analyse why the 22-year-old couldn’t emulate that on mediums or hards.
“Yuki struggled in the first stint, so we gambled on an early stop but the pace and car balance in his second stint was also inconsistent, meaning it was difficult to make sufficient progress,” said Egginton.
“We need to go through all the data to understand the reasons behind these issues. Yuki managed to show some better pace in his final stint on the soft tyre, but by this point we were running out of laps to move forward further, and he finished out of the points.
“We have a lot of work ahead of us before we arrive in Barcelona. We need to understand the various factors behind today’s performance, so we can move forward with our package and get back to scoring points.”
Michael Jones13 May 2022 12:53
Magnussen disappointed to leave Miami without points
Haas’ Kevin Magnussen is disappointed that he failed to pick up any points in the Miami Grand Prix in what he described as ‘the hardest race I’ve ever done’.
A late collision with Aston Martin’s Lance Stroll meant Magnussen wasn’t able to finish the race and his teammate Mick Schmacher only managed a P15 after his own crash with Sebastian Vettel.
That meant Amercian team Haas came away empty handed from their first home GP of the season.
“It was the hardest race I’ve ever done, it was unbelievably hot,” said Magnussen. “I had to do that last stint with damage to the front wing but even with that damage we got ourselves into a position to fight for P10.
“We were catching Alonso and he had a time penalty, but it is what it is – we tried everything we could and didn’t get points, onto the next one.”
The point-less result leaves Haas eighth in the championship and Team Principal Guenther Steiner was unable to conceal his frustration after the race.
“Clearly not the day we wanted,” said Steiner, “especially this being one of our home events. The pace in the car was there and it was demonstrated by both drivers, but once again we got unlucky with some events on track.
“We then had to retire Kevin’s car on the second-to-last lap with damage he’d sustained earlier while he was fighting to get back into the top 10. We learn lessons in races like this and we have to apply those lessons moving forward to better ourselves.”
Michael Jones13 May 2022 12:43