Will Gray

  • Tech Talk: The end of F1 qualifying as we know it?

    Paddock insiders admitted that F1 qualifying
    is becoming less important after many top drivers put fresh tyres ahead of grid
    positions in Turkey - but is this trend set to continue and is it a problem?

    Istanbul saw front row qualifiers
    Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber choose not to do a second run in the final
    session after Red Bull concluded the top spots were in the bag.

    That kind of situation is not
    particularly unusual when one team is in a reasonably dominant position - in
    general every unnecessary run is avoided to limit car usage and potential
    damage - but the fact that six of the

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  • Gray Matter: Can Webber top Vettel in Turkey?

    Sebastian Vettel has shown a phenomenal pace that his Red Bull team-mate Mark Webber has struggled to match so far this season - but could the tables turn in Turkey this weekend?

    The one fundamental in Formula One is that your first target to beat is your team-mate - which is why the intra-team rivalry at Red Bull is one of the most intriguing the sport has ever seen.

    The relationship between Vettel and Webber contrasts strongly with the harmony purveyed between Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton at McLaren, and Turkey holds special memories in that regard as it is where the Red Bull pair's

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  • Tech Talk: Tyre test for teams in Turkey

    The close but complicated competition at the front of Formula One is set to continue in Turkey this weekend - because the Istanbul track is one of the toughest tyre tests of the season.

    The thrilling race in China three weekends ago proved that Pirelli's attempts to spice up the drama in F1 are working, with the variety of tyre strategies chosen by the lead teams ensuring a nail-biting finish as Red Bull lost out to McLaren for the first time this year.

    The nature of this weekend's circuit could well take that drama further as Pirelli has admitted the track is the worst on the calendar for

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  • Tech Talk: The tactics of tyre management

    The Chinese Grand Prix proved again the
    importance of managing the new tyres through the course of not only a race but
    an entire race weekend - so what are the most important factors the teams have
    to consider?


    First of all, there are four different
    types of dry tyre that Pirelli have developed, but they will only bring two of
    those types to each race, chosen depending on track-specific criteria such as
    surface type, expected temperatures, average speeds, cornering types, etc.

    There is no free-for-all on the amount
    of tyres teams can use as there are limits to the amount Pirelli can

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  • Gray Matter: China best race in decades

    The Chinese Grand Prix has been
    described as "the greatest race in a generation" by some of F1's
    biggest names - but was it really the best and how much of the drama was down
    to the new regulations?

    All the legendary sporting classics
    involve close competition, intrigue, suspense and an outpouring of emotion -
    with the surprise success of an underdog often adding an extra sparkle.

    On that tick-list alone, last Sunday in
    Shanghai scored very highly.

    When Lewis Hamilton's mechanics were
    buzzing all over the back of his fuel-flooded McLaren in the garage with just
    seconds to go before the pitlane

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  • Tech Talk: How Red Bull lost it in China

    Bull had the fastest car on track in China but in a thrilling race McLaren
    out-performed them on strategy - so where and why did it suddenly all go wrong
    for the world champions?

    was dominant in qualifying, some 0.715 seconds faster than the lead McLaren,
    and his advantage was similar to what it had been at the opening race of the
    season in Australia.

    the season opening race, however, Vettel and second-placed Hamilton both chose
    the same soft/soft/hard tyre strategy and Vettel won easily. In China, the
    drama unfolded when the lead pair did not match each other in race strategy -

    Read More »from Tech Talk: How Red Bull lost it in China
  • Gray Matter: Can Ferrari hit back quickly?

    Ferrari's start to 2011 has not followed the script suggested by pre-season testing so far — but after showing some potential in Malaysia can the Italian giants mount a quick recovery?

    The pressure on Ferrari means question marks are already forming over the team's performance so far this year, but it's easy to see where their problems lie. Whether they can solve them, however, is a different matter.

    The team's qualifying performance in the opening two races has been nothing less than a disaster. Red Bull and McLaren locked out the front two rows in Australia and Malaysia and although Alonso

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  • Gray Matter: McLaren could win Sepang lottery

    Malaysia is one of the least predictable races on the F1 calendar when it comes to the weather - but this year if rain pours down or the sun bakes the track it could be McLaren who win the lottery...

    The Malaysian Grand Prix has always been a little more unpredictable than most events thanks to the region's weather patterns, which create a high likelihood of a downpour, particularly in the latter part of the day. That has been accentuated by later start times in recent years, with the race rained off in 2009 and the qualifying session affected in 2010, despite a move to a slightly more

    Read More »from Gray Matter: McLaren could win Sepang lottery
  • Tech Talk: How KERS return will affect F1

    The controversial Kinetic Energy
    Recovery System (KERS) returns to F1 this season - but is it now achieving what
    it was set out to and how much will it affect the championship battle this

    The sight of the McLaren cars flying
    past their rivals on track was a relatively common occurrence in 2009 thanks to
    their efficient KERS system, which proved more effective than that of their
    rivals. Yet by the end of the year the 'green energy' solution, which used
    normally wasted energy from braking for an extra power boost, was no longer in

    Having seen the high cost of development

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  • Tech Talk: Red Bull’s KERS conundrum

    Sebastian Vettel admitted Red Bull's
    unreliable KERS system almost cost him victory in Malaysia - but what is causing
    the problems and how can they be solved?

    With their low-running front wing and
    one of the most efficient exhaust-fed diffuser layouts on the grid, Red Bull
    appear to have developed the best car at least for the start of this season -
    but as their rivals copy to catch up, their fundamental failure on KERS
    development is starting to become a serious worry.

    McLaren's rapid turn-around from their
    pre-season disasters to become contenders for pole and race victory in Malaysia

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