Will Gray

  • Technical Talk: Back to the title battle

    The title race gets back on track this weekend in Valencia but which of the two main contenders will the street circuit suit best?

    The last race, in Budapest, saw Lewis Hamilton put McLaren back at the front with his first win of the year, but - whether they remain ahead or not after the summer break - the most important battle in terms of the championship will be the relative supremacy between Red Bull and Brawn, wherever they are on the grid.

    Brawn fell back in recent races after Red Bull introduced a significant development package and McLaren's return to the front has not helped matters

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  • Gray Matter: How Webber move will affect F1′s future

    Mark Webber's hard line against an attacking Sebastian Vettel in Turkey was a brave move - but it was just the move he and Formula One needed for their respective futures.

    "S*** happens..." as Red Bull like to put it - and in Turkey last weekend it certainly did. The team that has been criticised for making mistakes and throwing away their early-season advantage time after time did it again, but this time it was not reliability of the car that let them down but the liability of the drivers.

    Fair play to them, though. And fair play, too, to McLaren. Ferrari's 'team order' racing is not far from

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  • Can F1 take shortcut to US success?

    Formula One will head to Texas to give the US Grand Prix another crack in 2012 - but what can be done differently to finally build a strong popularity in mainstream America?

    It is clear from the comments of F1's leading drivers in Turkey on Thursday that everyone wants to make America work, not because they have a particular passion for the United States but because it matters so much to the businesses that run their teams.

    Although F1's manufacturer presence has dwindled, most major sponsors are global companies or seek global brand awareness and many others could be tempted in if America was

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  • Tech Talk: How to beat Red Bull in Turkey…

    The Istanbul circuit receives near unanimous praise from drivers up and down the grid - but what does it take to be fast around this track and how could F1's current pacesetters Red Bull be beaten?

    The combination of various different corner types, long straights and short braking zones requires a compromise in set-up, with a medium-speed first sector, the awesome high-speed turn eight followed by long fast stretches, and finally a tight and twisty section to finish.

    With Red Bull's car seemingly coping well with all track elements it's hard to see them being beaten this weekend, but there are

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  • Gray Matter: Does new scoring system work?

    Formula One's new points system was introduced this year with a view to increasing the benefit of victory - so six races into the new season is it working as it should?

    When Bernie Ecclestone announced plans to scrap points in favour of an Olympics-style medal system there was a general agreement that while that was a ludicrous idea, a shake-up was needed to give more incentive for the leaders to chase victory rather than settle for second and to also reward smaller teams within an increased grid.

    The 10-8-6-5-4-3-2-1 points system was replaced by 25-18-15-12-10-8-6-4-2-1 and Red Bull boss

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  • Tech Talk: Why Renault can break the big four

    After setting a good pace in Spain and securing their second podium of the season in Monaco, Renault are on the up - but what are their chances of breaking into the big four?

    When testing began for 2010, Red Bull, Ferrari, McLaren and Mercedes were clear frontrunners, establishing a premier division followed by the rest of the established teams in a close gaggle, with the new teams following on some distance behind.

    But development is moving fast. Red Bull are now in a league of their own on pace (if not yet with solid reliability) but after Ferrari slipped down and Mercedes failed to deliver

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  • Gray Matter: Is Monaco set for qualifying chaos?

    The first wheels have turned in Monaco this weekend and there remains concern over potential chaos in F1 qualifying - but what will separate a clean lap from a complete disaster on Saturday?

    When some teams tried to split qualifying for this weekend's trip to the Principality they failed. Quite rightly so, many said. And indeed, you have to agree - when F1 is in constant need of a 'lottery' factor to create excitement, why get rid of a perfectly legitimate one around the streets of Monaco.

    The naturally narrow streets combined with the short circuit length - at just 2.065 miles it is more than

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  • Gray Matter: Team-mate head-to-head

    The season began with expectations of some intriguing head-to-head battles within the leading teams - so after three races, who has the upper hand now and how is that likely to change?

    Looking into the crystal ball before the season began, Jenson Button's move to McLaren was the one that raised most question marks. There were many doubts about his chances of taking on Lewis Hamilton in a team that the younger Briton had made his own, and many expected him to crumble under the pressure.

    Instead, Button took McLaren's first win of the year and has certainly held his own - but suggestions that

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  • Gray Matter: Has Silverstone got it right?

    The new Silverstone layout has been widely praised after its
    initial unveiling — but will the design present more overtaking opportunities
    and after many changes have they finally got it all right?

    In an era when Hermann Tilke rules the roost on circuit design, the new
    Silverstone layout has a real opportunity to shine. Aside from Abu Dhabi, which
    was given significant praise from most quarters for both track layout and
    facilities, many other recent Tilke designs have been widely criticised for
    being 'the same old formula'.

    Silverstone has been developed by UK-based Populus, who designed

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  • Tech Talk: Red Bull’s shock step forward

    All hopes of a levelled playing field once the teams introduced their new development upgrades in Barcelona were blown away by Red Bull Racing - but just how far are they in front?

    Through the first four races Red Bull's car was a step ahead its rivals on pace, even if conditions and reliability worked against the team on several occasions. But nobody could have predicted the leap they made at last weekend's race in Spain.

    Team boss Christian Horner warned in the pre-race preview that this would be the "biggest update of the year so far" having already seen improvements building race by race -

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