I love the smell of burning oil in the morning - The Formula 1 2022 season

SocrManiac

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There are a lot of sporting and non-sporting reasons not to be in Saudi Arabia. I think we’ve seen almost all of them before the race even starts.
 

Average Reds

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It was hot garbage last year. The lower races have been marred by the same types of incidents this year. Expect lots of safety car racing and red flags.
Quoted for gospel truth.

Just looked at the “highlights” from qualifying and this track feels fundamentally unsafe. “Tight, fast, with little margin for error and bordered by concrete” seems to be a bad combination.
 

Nick Kaufman

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And yet some drivers have found it a blast:

has praised the "hardcore" Jeddah Corniche Circuit after the opening practice sessions at the inaugural F1 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix.
The Finn seemed to be enjoying himself in Free Practice 1, having been heard telling his engineer over team radio that "this track is cool", and his liking for the fast and narrow circuit continued into Free Practice 2.
"I think I said it already on the radio - it's really cool," Bottas explained when asked for his thoughts on the new circuit following FP2.
"It's quite hardcore, like it's pretty full gas and close to the walls and high speeds, but that's what we want. That's what we enjoy, and that gives you a bit of an adrenaline rush."
 

SocrManiac

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Nick Kaufman

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I mean, we can cherry pick individual drivers, but the consensus seems to be that the track needs changes: https://www.racefans.net/2022/03/27/f1-drivers-want-more-safety-changes-at-the-most-dangerous-place-on-the-calendar/

Again, this ignores the fact they shouldn’t be there in the first place.
I can find more quotes and I am fine if they make more changes as they aleady have btw.

As far as F1 not being there for political reasons. If that's the criterion, a good chunk of F1 calendar should be scrapped. I don't know if that should be the case, I am genuinely undecided about it. OTOH, F1 races provide a gloss for terrible, authoritarian regimes. OTOH, an argument can be made that when F1 comes into town, by having people exposed to a sport to F1, they are also exposed to the western world. A kid likes F1, starts following, he becomes more western-oriented as he grows up. But then the question arises. How strong is the effect on either direction. Does anyone get more cuddly about MBS because of the Saudi Arabia grand prix? Does MBS solidify his rule because of the grand prix? is the grand prix and exposure to F1 the difference between Saudi remaining authoritarian or gettng more democratic? I think the effect is infitessimal in either direction. If the effect is infitessimal, how much harm is it done because of the grand prix and how much good by not doing the grand prix there? If the principle is "don't do business with authoritarian regimes", where do we draw the line? Am I supposed to not buy a Chinese-made utensil from Target? If not, what's the difference?

The argument against Quatar hosting the World Cup seems stronger to me, because the hosting itself led to the mistreatment of thousands of migrant workers.

Then there's the narrow sport perspective. if you want F1 to be a worldwide sport, it will have to race in places without kosher governments. Most of the world isn't run by democracies.

As far as the track is concerned. When I view the aerial photos at night, it looks beautiful to me. As for the racing. Yes, it's probably more dangerous than the average track. But the danger and the accidents the track induces also injects variance in the equation. Variance makes outcomes more unpredictable and unpredictability makes the spectacle more exciting. I don't want to sound like a member of a Coliseum crowd cheering for gladiators' death. To the extent that they can, they should make the track as safe as they can. Either way, the whole discussion is moot, because they ll be moving to a different track in a few years.
 

OurF'ingCity

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As far as F1 not being there for political reasons. If that's the criterion, a good chunk of F1 calendar should be scrapped. I don't know if that should be the case, I am genuinely undecided about it. OTOH, F1 races provide a gloss for terrible, authoritarian regimes. OTOH, an argument can be made that when F1 comes into town, by having people exposed to a sport to F1, they are also exposed to the western world. A kid likes F1, starts following, he becomes more western-oriented as he grows up. But then the question arises. How strong is the effect on either direction. Does anyone get more cuddly about MBS because of the Saudi Arabia grand prix? Does MBS solidify his rule because of the grand prix? is the grand prix and exposure to F1 the difference between Saudi remaining authoritarian or gettng more democratic? I think the effect is infitessimal in either direction. If the effect is infitessimal, how much harm is it done because of the grand prix and how much good by not doing the grand prix there? If the principle is "don't do business with authoritarian regimes", where do we draw the line? Am I supposed to not buy a Chinese-made utensil from Target? If not, what's the difference?
Putting aside the moral aspects of it, I just don't think the races in the Gulf States are as good of a product. They feel much less like "events" to me because the the stands tend to be populated with either super-rich oil barons or ex-pats. When they go to these tracks, it almost feels like they are racing on the moon or something (Lewis has repeatedly remarked on this point - if I recall correctly, Qatar was particularly bad and he rhetorically asked why the government didn't just make the race free for everyone to come to given that no one was apparently willing or able to buy tickets).

The European tracks are fun because of all their history, and because usually they are the "home" track for at least one racer so the crowds are raucous. And the "New World" races at places like COTA, Mexico City, and Australia are fun because they feel like big parties - there are concerts, barbecues, fans milling about all over the place, etc. The Gulf-State races don't really fit either of those, and are just sort of blah. I guess Abu Dhabi feels like it has a little more character, so I wouldn't be super opposed to keeping that one on the schedule but getting rid of Jeddah, Bahrain, and Qatar.
 

Beomoose

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Putting aside the moral aspects of it, I just don't think the races in the Gulf States are as good of a product. They feel much less like "events" to me because the the stands tend to be populated with either super-rich oil barons or ex-pats. When they go to these tracks, it almost feels like they are racing on the moon or something (Lewis has repeatedly remarked on this point - if I recall correctly, Qatar was particularly bad and he rhetorically asked why the government didn't just make the race free for everyone to come to given that no one was apparently willing or able to buy tickets).

The European tracks are fun because of all their history, and because usually they are the "home" track for at least one racer so the crowds are raucous. And the "New World" races at places like COTA, Mexico City, and Australia are fun because they feel like big parties - there are concerts, barbecues, fans milling about all over the place, etc. The Gulf-State races don't really fit either of those, and are just sort of blah. I guess Abu Dhabi feels like it has a little more character, so I wouldn't be super opposed to keeping that one on the schedule but getting rid of Jeddah, Bahrain, and Qatar.
This track is also pretty crappy in layout, not that it's unusual in the respect.
 

SocrManiac

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Perez got fucked by Latifi. I mean, it couldn’t have been worse if he tried.

It would be nice if guys that consistently crash could get some penalty points here and there.
 

OurF'ingCity

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I don't know if it's the new regs or just the cars being very close in terms of pace, or both, but the battles between Verstappen and LeClerc have been tons of fun so far. Hope it keeps up as the season goes on. (Hilarious that Verstappen fell for LeClerc's "slow down before the DRS zone" trick for the second straight race.)
 

reggiecleveland

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Surprised nobody posted here yet.

I have to say this is the first time as a sports fan I find myself unable to root for the Canadian athletes. Stroll's father is insufferable, and Latifi is involved in a crash every week.
 

tmracht

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Haven't caught up will watch qualifying tonight but Latifi is the new Mazespin.
 

SocrManiac

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Latifi is reminding me of Grosjean/Magnussen of a few years ago where it just seemed inevitable there would be an incident. The penalty points don’t seem to be well positioned to combat this.

F1 needs competitive red cars. It’s nice to see again.

McLaren’s leap forward is pretty impressive.

I don’t see a huge talent gap between Hamilton and Russell at this point in their careers. I think the years in the crap Williams have positioned George well for the new aero rules. I’ve said it before, but if Lewis looks ordinary next to a good teammate it’s going to be remembered when comparing legacies.
 

tmracht

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Williams with a madlad strategy. I'll hold off too much in case people are catching up late today.
 

Phragle

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I'm so tired

Fuck the Strolls tho. Daddy ruined the most efficent team on the grid and the kid is a spoiled little bitch that doesn't look in his mirrors

Other than the time I had to watch, I enjoyed Albert park. The changes looked good
 

reggiecleveland

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Max with another DNF, seems the Red Bull might not be super reliable.
Horner's interview was a bit funny when asked if Max was frustrated. Could see him keeping his composure. "I'd rather make a fast car reliable than try to make a reliable car fast."

Curious to me why the problem was limited to one of the Red Bull cars. When Perez asked they told him his car was fine.
 

cgori

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I think they said in the pre-race that something was specifically wrong with the hydraulics on Max's car, they rebuilt or re-pressurized (or both) that system on the grid. Sounded like it was very much something specific to Max's car.

But agreed, that Horner interview was pretty funny.
 

OurF'ingCity

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I just don’t know why you’d schedule a sprint race for a track that basically has one place where you can overtake. They should just look at the data, figure out the three tracks that have the most overtaking opportunities, and sprint races at those.

All that said, another fun battle between RB and Ferrari. Although at some level RB’s reliability issues have been amusing, I really hope that’s just an early season thing because the Max/Charles battles on track have been great and if Charles is up 50 points or whatever by mid-season those battles are going to start losing some of their excitement.
 

mikeot

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Looks like a season of RB dominance in the making, or is the sample size too early?
 

OurF'ingCity

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For those of you more knowledgeable, how does this type of showing affect Hamilton's legacy/reputation?
Not really at all, IMO. I kind of look at this season for Hamilton like Brady’s 2019. The pieces just aren’t there for him to really compete.

Russell has obviously outperformed Hamilton this year but I don’t know how much that really says about the two of them as drivers other than that for whatever reason this car just suits Russel better. It’s not like Hamilton has historically been bad at overtaking or anything like that.
 

SocrManiac

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I disagree. If Russell consistently outperforms and beats Hamilton there’s absolutely a question about car vs. driver.
 

mattquinley

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You must not be familiar with the UK media - I'm pretty sure it enjoys tearing people down at least as much as it enjoys hyping them up. Give it time...
Certainly hasn't happened yet. They're bending over backwards to find explanations for George beating Lewis thus far. The latest one is "Mercedes are experimenting with the car on Lewis' side of the garage, and he's carrying the burden of trying to improve the car."

F1.com Weekend Warmup

I think it's more likely a combination of:
1. The current car just suits Russell's driving style better.
2. George has recent experience wrestling with a slow car. Lewis has had the fastest car, by a huge margin, for most of the past 8 years. He's not used to chasing faster cars.
3. Lewis' domination in the hybrid era has been largely driven by Mercedes' superiority. Latifi would have won races in that car from 2014-2021.
 

SocrManiac

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Lewis's jewelry becomes the focus this week. What will Mercedes do? Knowingly sign the affidavit?

I think the safety concern is legitimate. If he needs an MRI after a crash, cutting rings off him shouldn't be in the way.
 

SocrManiac

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Yeah, this is coming to a head: https://www.racefans.net/2022/05/06/hamilton-fia-have-bigger-fish-to-fry-in-f1-than-jewellery-clampdown/

Imagine if Lewis doesn't race in this Miami event?

I understand both sides in this. I may be naive, but I do believe this is about safety. Lewis has a point that the rule hasn't been enforced in 16 years, but don't points of focus change all the time? Ultimately, it's up to him to comply or the FIA to ban one of its biggest stars.

Nobody wins! Always the best outcome!
 

mattquinley

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I hadn't heard about any of this until today. I am flabbergasted that F1 drivers are complaining about being required to wear fireproof underwear.

Link

I mean, pretty much the entire grid was acquainted with Niki Lauda before he passed away, and it's only been 2 years since Grosjean's Haas exploded in flames in Bahrain. Hamilton appeared to be visibly shaken by that crash in Drive to Survive, yet here we are with him bitching about the sport "going backwards" in attempting to enforce driver safety regulations. After last season Mercedes, and by association Hamilton, wanted the FIA to enforce the rulebook to the letter. Careful what you wish for, folks.
 

SocrManiac

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After last season Mercedes, and by association Hamilton, wanted the FIA to enforce the rulebook to the letter. Careful what you wish for, folks.
I didn’t have that context in my head when considering this. Now it just looks like two entitled children complaining about who kicked who first.
 

SocrManiac

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Danica Patrick may not have been the best choice for the post-quali interviews. The high fives and comments were pretty cringey.
 

SoxFanInPdx

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Really have gotten into this sport in this past year thanks to “Drive To Survive”.

Anything else I can do besides watch the races? Like, does F1 have a channel?