Left field

The Reuters global sports blog

Formula One’s youngest world champion was always a man in a hurry

Photo
-

MOTOR-RACING-PRIX/From the very first moment he arrived in Formula One as a curly-haired teenager, new world champion Sebastian Vettel was a young man in a hurry.

The 23-year-old Red Bull Driver, who became the youngest winner of the drivers’ championship with victory in Sunday’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, has set records from day one.

Within seconds of his debut in Friday practice at the 2006 Turkish Grand Prix, he had been fined for speeding in the pit lane. The youngest driver to take part in a practice session, in quick succession he became the youngest to score a point, youngest to secure pole position and youngest to win a grand prix.

Born in the same year that Red Bull sold their first can of energy drink, the race ace with the look of a tousled schoolboy and cheeky grin has always seemed a marketing match made in heaven for the newly crowned Formula One constructors’ champions.

Team orders? That will be $100,000

Photo
-

RTR2I3OB[1alonsos]

Any Formula One team wishing to manipulate the outcome of a race in favour of one or other of their drivers at least now knows the going rate after this week’s hearing in Paris into the recent Ferrari furore.

Team orders? That will be $100,000 — at least until the end of the season, after which there may well be no charge at all.

Schumi returns as if he’d never left

Photo
-

MOTOR-RACING/When Germany’s best-selling tabloid Bild sends two reporters to an overseas Formula One test in the depths of February, you know something big is brewing.

The return of Michael Schumacher, and the seven times world champion’s first drive of the new Mercedes W01, in Valencia on Monday triggered scenes reminiscent of the glory days when the German was so dominant with Ferrari.

Vlog-Schumacher shadow still hangs over Ferrari’s Maranello

-

 

Maranello is the spiritual home of Formula One glamour team Ferrari, but there is very little glitz in the working class northern Italian town.

Mark Meadows was there for the launch of Ferrari’s new 2010 car, which will have to go up against former favourite Michael Schumacher this season. Click on the video to hear more.

Schumacher – The Comeback Part II (or not?)

Photo
-

schumacherA lot of people are getting quite excited about the possibility of Michael Schumacher coming out of retirement to race for the new Mercedes F1 team (formerly known as champions Brawn) at the age of 41.

The German’s spokeswoman Sabine Kehm feels it is highly unlikely while Mercedes said at the weekend that “some speculations are nothing but dreams which will not come true” (although note the carmaker did not specifically say this particular piece of speculation was one of them).

Button to McLaren – the real deal or just pretend?

Photo
-

buttonJenson Button’s eye-catching visit to McLaren on Friday is of obvious benefit to both parties, whatever the reality behind the headlines.

If a deal is done, the new Formula One champion gets the bigger salary that Brawn are reluctant or unable to pay as well as a potentially winning car for next season.

When will F1 have a Middle Eastern driver?

Photo
-

rtxe7pl1ferr

 Abu Dhabi’s new Formula One circuit has given the Middle East seemingly unbeatable bragging rights as home to the world’s most modern and lavish track.

“No one is going to top this,” commented Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone on his arrival at Yas Marina and he may well be right.

The same old Felipe Massa?

Photo
-

rtxpkm0masssssa1

Felipe Massa won a lot of respect in Brazil a year ago when, having missed out on the Formula One championship by a single point after winning his home grand prix, he proved gracious in defeat.

“I know how to win,  I know how to lose,” he said.

The Ferrari driver returns to Interlagos as a spectator and special guest this weekend after suffering life-threatening head injuries in Hungary in July.

The worst kept secret is finally out…Alonso moves to Ferrari

Photo
-

In the world of Formula One, it is very hard to keep a secret.

We’ve known for months that Fernando Alonso would be replacing Kimi Raikkonen at Ferrari, a move confirmed on Wednesday.

Insiders also reckoned he had signed a deal a while back, which Alonso himself has revealed, although he said it was originally for 2011.

The worst act of cheating in sport?

Photo
-

MOTOR-RACING-PRIXThe back page of today’s Times carries an opinion piece that pulls no punches about Formula One’s race-fixing controversy.

“The worst act of cheating in the history of sport,” is the headline.

  •