TMR Team | Jun 20, 2012
  • Rosberg says Mercedes 'fastest car' in 2012
  • New minister admits French GP desirable
  • F1 teams could fold if costs not reduced - Todt
  • F1 fans without tickets as agency folds
 

Rosberg says Mercedes 'fastest car' in 2012

Nico Rosberg sounds very confident ahead of this weekend's European grand prix on the streets of Valencia.

The breakthrough Shanghai winner, who also finished second recently at Monaco, is quoted by Germany's Sport1 as insisting the Mercedes is "absolutely the fastest car" at present.

At the same time, Pirelli's Paul Hembery is reported as having tipped Rosberg's teammate and Monaco polesitter Michael Schumacher for pole and victory this weekend.

Rosberg added: "I have the feeling that we could win every race."

As for the world championship, Rosberg is 21 points adrift leader Lewis Hamilton at present, but the 26-year-old insists: "It (the title) is possible."

"Yes, Canada was a small step backwards," he said, referring to his fifth on the grid and sixth place finish in Montreal recently.

And some have predicted a similar struggle in Valencia, where the high temperatures are tipped to be a problem for Mercedes' 2012 car, the W03.

Does Norbert Haug agree: "No," the German marque's motor sport director insisted.

"Nico's pace in Canada with track temperatures of 40 degrees showed that the car can do well in extreme conditions."

Rosberg concurred: "We have made huge progress in this regard."

Team boss Ross Brawn also sounded confident, setting a high goal if the Brackley based outfit can cut out reliability and team mistakes.

"The opportunities available if we can give both drivers a reliable car and a clean weekend are clear," he said.

Haug, meanwhile, pointed out that if the championship had begun in Shanghai in April, Rosberg would now be leading the drivers' world championship.

"The target is to continue that trend," said the German.

(GMM)

 

New minister admits French GP desirable

France's new sports minister sounds keen to see the country return to the F1 calendar.

The previous administration, led by ex president Nicolas Sarcozy, pushed hard to line up Paul Ricard as the venue for a French grand prix in 2013, thereafter alternating annually with Belgium's Spa Francorchamps.

But Sarcozy lost office just before the final contracts could be signed and sealed, and new president Francois Hollande and his sports deputy Valerie Fourneyron quickly put the brakes on the deal's momentum.

Fourneyron did, however, recently meet with a Paul Ricard delegation, as well as representatives of the Nievre region, who would like to see the French grand prix return to the scene of the last race in 2008, at Magny Cours.

A source close to the governing Conseil General de la Nievre indicated that a meeting next Monday could see a decision made to instigate a public interest group for the revival of Magny Cours' formula one race.

"When you see what Romain Grosjean is doing and the popularity of the races, we have to admit that we would like to have a formula one grand prix," minister Fourneyron is quoted by RMC Sport.

(GMM)

 

F1 teams could fold if costs not reduced - Todt

Jean Todt has admitted he is worried formula one teams could collapse if costs are not reduced.

After the FIA's meeting of its World Motor Sport Council last Friday, a media statement revealed that the governing body is "having active discussions with teams regarding cost control".

The FIA added that the Council will have to vote on any amendments to the chassis rules for 2013 prior to the end of this month.

"The intention is to help all teams participate in the championship in a fair and equal manner," the statement added.

FIA president Todt is quoted by the German language Speed Week: "For me, formula one is too expensive.

"If we do nothing, we could get into a situation where we have less than twelve teams on the grid."

Last week, Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo insisted F1 cannot ignore the impact of Europe's worsening economic crisis.

"Ferrari is in agreement with the FIA's position that drastic intervention is required," he said.

"This is no longer the moment for getting bogged down in sterile discussions or the meanderings of engineers, usually only concerned in defending the interests of someone or other.

"The question (of costs) has to be tackled at the highest level without further delay," added Montezemolo.

(GMM)

 

F1 fans without tickets as agency folds

Some F1 fans are enduring a very unhappy buildup to the forthcoming grands prix at Valencia and Silverstone.

The well-known British broadcaster James Allen revealed on his blog that an agency called 'Simply The Ticket' has closed down without delivering paid tickets to hopeful F1 spectators.

The business' official website and Twitter account are not working.

"Looks like Simply The Ticket has absconded with F1 ticket holders' money for Valencia this weekend," someone Tweeted.

Another wondered: "Was (Simply The Ticket) a relatively new site or had it been around a while? If the former, sounds like a massive scam."

A bio at a third party website reads: "Simply The Ticket sells F1 grand prix tickets as well as tickets to theatre, sport, music, concerts and other events.

"We also supply corporate hospitality packages to all sporting events."

The company did not respond to an email or answer a phone call.

(GMM)