The perks of being a Formula One driver appear to be endless. If being privileged to occupy one of the 20, or so, seats in the grid isn’t cool enough, a driver like multiple-time world champion Fernando Alonso certainly has one of the coolest perks of any driver outside of the racetrack.
The lead Ferrari driver gets to take tours of the automaker’s facilities while also being fawned and fought over wherever he goes. It’s a good life, indeed.
But one of the biggest benefits of being a driver on a team like Ferrari is the kind of access you have to some of the company’s biggest projects. Recently, the two-time driver’s champion paid a visit to the company’s facility in Maranello where he met some of Ferrari’s best and brightest engineers.
But the real highlight of Alonso’s visit was the chance to sit behind the wheel of the LaFerrari and take it for a spin around the track. Not a lot of people get to do that and Alonso looks right at home driving that 900-horsepower supercar.
Click past the jump to read more about the Ferrari LaFerrari
Rarely is something both the slowest and the hardest at the same time, but that all goes out the window when you’re talking about the Grand Prix at Monaco. For the majority of the F1 season, the drivers get to open up their cars a good bit. At Monaco, those chances to go wide open are limited to about three, as there are only a three extended straightaways on the track.
Besides those three straights, drivers get to deal with a plethora of intense twists and blind turns that require great care to negotiate correctly. These tight turns all amount to Monaco being the lowest average speed course on the F1 circuit, and arguably the hardest one on the circuit.
Well, the 70th running of this ultra-technical road course is due to start on May 27, 2012 and we’re going to provide a quick preview of what’s to come.
Click past the jump to read all about the Grand Prix at Monaco
While most of us have let the incident in Germany between Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa die off, some are still sour over the event. Today, Nick Heidfeld said that it would be a shame if the team orders incident influenced the outcome of the F1 Championship.
Currently, Alonso sits on top of the driver’s table by 11 points and seven of those points were earned at Hockenheim, where Massa was told to move aside to let Alonso pass.
"If Alonso wins the championship with a margin less than the 7 points, it would devalue the championship — that’s a personal view," said former FIA president Max Mosley.
Mosley isn’t the only one who feels this way, as the Red Bull team boss agrees, stating that it would be frustrating if the Spanish driver took the title.
Ferrari has already fined $100,000 for the move, as team orders in F1 are banned at the moment.
Ferrari needs to thank its lucky stars after a meeting with the FIA World Motor Sport Council today in Paris. The meeting was held to discuss whether Ferrari should face further punishments after team orders allowed Fernando Alonso to overtake Felipe Massa.
The team was already fined $100,000 for the incident, but no further sanctions would be imposed on the Italian race team. Did you expect anything less? Ferrari is obviously very important to Formula One and we never expected them to be forced to sit out a race, especially with Monza, a home race for the team, coming up next week.
Ferrari claimed that Massa decided to move over and allow Alonso by, even though the radio transmission, stating that Alonso was faster and if he understood the message was quite clear. Ferrari engineer Rob Smedley apologized to Massa after he lost the lead. We can’t image how that could have been taken as anything, but team orders.
All those talks surrounding Kimi Raikkonen’s move to rally car racing have been extinguished after reports came out that the former World Champion has signed an outline agreement to return to McLaren next year.
Citing ‘paddock sources’, the Mirror was the first to report about Raikkonen’s apparent return to the silver and black after spending three years in Ferrari, including a World Championship in 2007.
Despite being under contract to Ferrari for one more year at around $50 million, whispers are being made that Raikkonen is prepared to vacate his seat in Ferrari if Scuderia will pay him his entire 2010 salary down to the last penny.
In the event that Ferrari does give-in to the Finn’s request, we can all consider it a formality that another former World Champion will replace Kimi at Ferrari for 2010. That ex-champ being Fernando Alonso.
In the event that all of this plays out as anticipated, would we expect nothing less than a return to form from Ferrari and McLaren next year?
At the very least, an Alonso-Massa pairing and a Raikkonen-Hamilton team is pretty much worth watching.
Felipe Massa is set to make a return to the tracks sometime in December, although it won’t be in a Ferrari F1 car as a lot of people would have hoped. Massa’s first race back from his career-threatening injury at Hungary earlier this year will be in a go-kart.
It’s not exactly the most resounding of comebacks, is it?
Nevertheless, Massa will be making his racing comeback at the Brazilian Granja Viana endurance kart race in his native Brazil. The race, which will be held in Sao Paulo sometime in December, figures to get a huge boost in publicity in the event Massa - one of the country’s most popular race car drivers – does get the ‘go’ signal from his doctors.
In the meantime, the Brazilian continues to recuperate from the crash that almost ended his life but has made it clear that he’s itching to return to racing, saying that “I wish I could be on the track tomorrow because I’m bored."
We’re all rooting for Felipe Massa to have as fast a recovery as possible because we’d love to see him back where he belongs: on a race track.
Whether it’s behind the wheel of a Ferrari F1 car or a go-kart is inconsequential to us; we just want him back to doing what he does best.
If you were thinking that after leaving the Ferrari team, Schumacher will go somewhere in the country, buy a house and leave a peaceful life you were more than wrong. Speed and adrenaline will be his job for the rest of his life, and now even more when there are rumors that he will take over as boss of the Ferrari team.
The rumor came from the specialist magazine Auto Motor und Sport, but quickly spread throughout the motor sport and mainstream media. German Schumacher, 38, has apparently (...) > Full story