Mike Stevens | Dec 14, 2010

Volkswagen motor racing representative Hans-Joachim Stuck has applauded F1's radical engine formula for 2013.

The German car giant and its subsidiary Porsche have been linked with a possible F1 foray in the near future if the sport moves away from its current V8 engine formula.

On Friday in Monaco, the FIA green-lighted a new efficient formula for 2013 featuring small energy-efficient turbo engines.

"The conditions for a possible entrance of the Volkswagen group have been created," hailed Stuck, according to Welt am Sonntag newspaper.

He is also quoted by rp-online.de: "We have not decided anything, but we very much welcome the FIA's decision."

And Stuck reportedly told Bild am Sonntag newspaper: "The engine rules are a good starting point for Volkswagen in Formula One."

Mercedes' motor racing boss Norbert Haug said the new rules will slash engine budgets by "at least a quarter".

(GMM)

 

Ex-champs Disagree On Vettel Maturity

Two former world champions do not agree about the development of F1's reigning title winner, Sebastian Vettel.

1997 World Champion Jacques Villeneuve said he recognises the young German's talent but was less impressed with his overall behaviour this season.

"He's very fast but I feel he has trouble controlling his emotions," the French Canadian is quoted by Auto Hebdo.

"I saw him raising a finger to the stewards in the pitlane and I find it hard to comprehend doing that at this level, that's more like a little kid," charged Villeneuve.

He blames the situation on 23-year-old Vettel's employer Red Bull.

"He's been treated the same for his whole career. At 14, he knew already that he would be brought into F1.

"When he makes a mistake, he is told 'no, you did nothing wrong, everything is fine'. We'll see how he reacts now (as champion)," added Villeneuve.

He continued: "Hamilton was a bit like that at first, but after his title, he had a bad season and this year he was finally a man.

"This year, Vettel stupidly took out Webber but the team said it was Webber's fault. Let's see what happens -- is it going to get worse, or will he get more mature now?

"If he goes in the direction of Hamilton then he will win more championships. Otherwise he will never learn from his mistakes," added Villeneuve.

Four-time World Champion Alain Prost, however, admits he is now a fan of Vettel after spending some time with the Red Bull driver at the recent Race of Champions event.

"He is very young but already very mature," said the Frenchman. "I also see a freshness, an enthusiasm that I really like. This is not the case with all young F1 drivers.

"That's one thing that surprises me: you don't feel the passion in some drivers, it's like they're there just for the business.

"But in Vettel, I feel the freshness and passion and I hope he keeps it as long as possible."

Prost also hailed Vettel's finish to the 2010 Championship.

"Like everyone else, I was a bit critical when I saw the mess he created on some occasions. But in a driver with such panache and character, it is difficult to contain.

"After August, I saw a radical change. Then, without the incident in Korea, he would have won all of the last four races. He is a great champion, there is no doubt," he insisted.

"You might have judged differently in the middle of the season, but - at the end - we can say 'bravo'," Prost said.

(GMM)

 

2011 To Equal 40-year-old 'Most F1 Champions' Record

2011 will be the first season in four decades in which no fewer than five World Champions line up on the grid.

Among new champion Sebastian Vettel's rivals next season will be former title winners Jenson Button (2009), Lewis Hamilton (2008), Fernando Alonso (2005-6) and Michael Schumacher (1994-5 and 2000-4).

The only previous occasion on which the F1 grid boasted five active world champions was 1970, when Jack Brabham, John Surtees, Denny Hulme, Graham Hill and Jackie Stewart were all racing.

And that season's ultimately posthumous World Champion Jochen Rindt was killed at Monza in September.

There have never been six active World Champions all still driving in F1 at the same time.

But if 2007 World Champion Kimi Raikkonen had returned to F1 from rallying, and Jacques Villeneuve had successfully formed his own team in collaboration with Durango, there might be no fewer than 7 world champions on the 2011 grid.

On a 24 car grid, that would represent almost 30 percent of the entire field.

(GMM)

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