Left field

The Reuters global sports blog

Amusing Ferrari take on Formula One chaos

Max Mosley’s plans for a budget cap next season, which would give teams with a cap greater technical freedom, has led Ferrari, Renault, Toyota and the two Red Bull teams to say they will not race next season unless the rules are changed.

Piero Ferrari, son of founder Enzo, showed off some of his firm’s trademark class with this comment:

“It’s like soccer. In Italy we have Inter, who are winning, and they spend huge amounts of money for the best players. But in Serie A you also have a team like Catania, who have no money,” he told the Guardian.

“So do you say to Catania, ‘You can play with 12 players,’ and to Inter, ‘You must play with nine?’ It wouldn’t be fair. But this is what the new Formula One rules are like.”

Button-Hamilton turnaround exposes sham of F1 driving talent

Here Mitch Phillips gives one view of the current state of Formula One while below Alan Baldwin has a different take on the argument.

Imagine if Usain Bolt returned to the track this year only to find that all his rivals had developed new starting blocks and suddenly the triple world record holder and Olympic champion was not even good enough to make the final of this year’s world championships?

Button still has the Brawn after car modifications

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buttonFree practice for the Spanish Grand Prix took place on Friday with most teams bringing modified cars to Barcelona as they attempt to catch the high flying Brawn-Mercedes team.

Brawn’s Jenson Button and Nico Rosberg of Williams set the fastest laps in the two practice sessions but despite having opportunities to upgrade their cars, Ferrari and McLaren were well off the pace.

Night racing deserves a quiet night

After problems at the ‘evening’ Formula One grands prixs in Australia and Malaysia, the opening MotoGP event of the season in Qatar — a night race — was postponed for a day because of heavy rain.

Kropotkin has no doubt on motogpmatters that “night races are a stupid idea, for lots of reasons”.

Formula One threatens to turn upside down

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Visitors to the London Science Museum can see Lewis Hamilton’s McLaren hanging upside down from the ceiling as part of an exhibition highlighting the use of Formula One technology in the wider world.

If that all seems topsy-turvy, it’s nothing compared to what’s been going on at Barcelona’s Circuit de Catalunya this week.
 
The last big pre-season test involving all the teams before the first race in Australia on March 29 has turned the world on its head for Britain’s two drivers and forced a hasty re-assessment of their prospects.
 
Jenson Button, who last year trundled around in an under-powered Honda that should have been put out of its misery long before it got anywhere near a track, was as bright-eyed as I’ve seen him since he won in Budapest three years ago after his new Brawn turned out to be quite an eye-opener.
 
The Briton completed an impressive 130 laps on Wednesday, lapping comfortably a second faster than anyone else. On Thursday, his Brazilian team mate Rubens Barrichello went even quicker.
 
Not bad for two supposed has-beens whose F1 careers looked as good as over only a few months ago.
 
World champion Hamilton, whose car was the envy of most of his peers in 2008, hit the tyre barriers on Wednesday and ended up last. He was just as slow on Thursday. So not many smiles there.
 
Button scored three points last season to Hamilton’s 98 and had been dismissed by all and sundry. So much so, that Graham Sharpe of bookmakers Williams Hill had another pot shot at him last week when Brawn finally emerged from the remains of now-departed Honda.

Brawn GP gets the nod as the new Honda

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We wondered about a name and now we have it — Brawn GP.

The former Honda Formula One team has been saved and will race this season as Brawn GP under new owner Ross Brawn, a former Ferrari technical director.

Britain’s Jenson Button and Brazilian Rubens Barrichello, last year’s Honda line-up, will continue to drive for the British-based team with the first race in Australia little more than three weeks away on March 29.

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