Will Gray

  • Gray Matter: Team orders will help decide 2010 title

    The decision on Ferrari's team orders scandal left more questions than answers over their use in Formula One - so as the title battle heads to the wire how will the teams and the FIA deal with it?

    Team orders, tactics or strategy, call it what you will, it's all the same - and it was never in question that Ferrari had used it to give Fernando Alonso an advantage in Germany. What was more important was that the hearing brought into focus many past incidents where teams had taken similar but less blatant actions and got away with it.

    From the day that the rule was created in 2002 it was clear it

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  • Gray Matter: F1′s new grid?

    The names on the grand prix grid could change significantly next year if rumours of various team buyouts are to be believed - but will the team landscape really change in 2011?

    Formula One is fast heading back towards its former days of paddock politics and as the season reaches its crescendo with on-track action at the front of the field, the teams at the back of the grid have had more focus placed on their short- and long-term future than wheel-to-wheel battles on the track.

    Lotus has already made its first move by dropping Cosworth - and is set to announce some significant future plans in

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  • Tech Talk: Singapore to point to title destination?

    There may still be five races to go before the end of the season but this weekend's Singapore Grand Prix could reveal some important clues to the likely destination of the 2010 world title.

    After the two fast and smooth circuits of Spa-Francorchamps and Monza, Formula One heads to the opposite extreme with the high downforce and bumpy characteristics of Singapore. After this, though, the rest of the season's circuits should settle somewhere in the middle.

    So far the season has shown that McLaren is good at circuits requiring ultimate top-end speed but doesn't like bumps; Red Bull is good on

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  • Gray Matter: Kimi’s comeback conundrum

    Formula One was devoid of a 'silly season' this year until Renault's newfound form generated rumours of a return for Kimi Raikkonen - but why did it surface and how likely is it to happen?

    This year's title battle is one of the most hotly contested of the year and all those involved in it will be thankful they have not had to cast one eye on their future as the front-running trio of Red Bull, Ferrari and McLaren all had their seats tied up by mid-season at the latest.

    Fourth-placed Mercedes, too, have long been locked-in with Nico Rosberg and Michael Schumacher, so that left Renault, who only

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  • Tech Talk: Ferrari’s Monza F-Factor

    Ferrari's impressive performance at their home race in Italy was in no small part down to their detailed approach to development - and 'the F-factor' played a vital part in putting them back on the title trail.

    Before the race there was much talk about the value of the F-duct. Williams technical chief Sam Michael said it was a "no brainer" that it should be used, but others thought the benefits might not be big enough to justify running it, given the low downforce nature of the circuit.

    The F-duct is most beneficial when the car is in a high downforce configuration, with a large and highly

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  • Gray Matter: What’s up with Mercedes?

    A disappointing Canadian Grand Prix left Michael Schumacher admitting his championship hopes are now all but over - so where did it go wrong for Mercedes this season and is there still time to turn it around?

    Ross Brawn's team now sit in fourth place on 108 points, more than two 1-2 finishes behind McLaren's table-topping 215 after eight of the 19 races, with Schumacher 75 points (three full wins) behind championship leader Lewis Hamilton. Mercedes motorsport chief Norbert Haug has even taken to congratulating engine partners McLaren on their victories as a footnote to his works team's

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  • Tech Talk: How Monza set-up could change the order

    The unique nature of Monza will see most teams creating specific aerodynamic packages for this weekend's Italian Grand Prix - but how will it affect the order at the front?

    The combination of long straights, which reach up to 1.2km in length, and just 13 corners over the course of the lap means teams will focus on a very low downforce and low drag set-up for this weekend's race.

    This involves flattening out the rear wing profile and reducing rear wing flap size to reduce downforce and resultant downforce-induced drag, thus maximising top speed along the straights. It also requires a unique

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  • Tech Talk: The FIA clampdown

    Red Bull Racing and Ferrari passed tougher wing tests in Belgium last weekend and now face more new tests
    at the next race in Monza
    - but does F1 need to take an even tougher stance in future?

    There were some interesting comments in the paddock this
    weekend about the flexiwing controversy. Is it over? Was it just a distraction?
    How will the new floor test change things at Monza? But out of all the discussion, it
    became clear that Formula One could now be facing a fundamental issue in the
    way it manages its regulations.

    Early in the Spa weekend, it appeared that the Red Bull
    Racing and Ferrari

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  • Tech Talk: GP could be won on Friday

    The tight title battle continues at Hockenheim this
    weekend with Red Bull and McLaren pushing development boundaries hard in
    different areas - but how will their respective progress affect things this

    Bridgestone will bring their widest tyre gap of the
    season this weekend to spice things up, but while much of the focus (providing
    the weather remains dry) will be on how the cars cope with this difference in
    tyre performance styles perhaps the biggest key to this weekend's battle
    between Red Bull and McLaren will actually be their respective progress with
    their f-duct and blown diffuser

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  • Gray Matter: Mid-table mid-term report

    The mid-term report moves to the middle of the pack this week - and while it may not hit the headlines there is a fascinating battle for superiority outside the sport's top five teams.

    With Renault making impressive moves forward to join Mercedes in the tail end of the top five, this year's tight midfield really contains just four teams - Force India, Williams, Sauber and Toro Rosso - all battling to capitalise on mistakes from the frontrunners.

    While the top teams are definable this year by their rapid rates of progress and clear trends in multi-race consistency, this set of teams have shown

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