F1: Ecclestone To Decide Nurburgring Fate - Spokesman Photo:

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TMR Team | Jan, 09 2013 | 0 Comments
  • Ecclestone to decide Nurburgring fate - spokesman
  • Stewart wrong to say F1 poorly managed - FIA
  • Lotus to launch new car in late January - Grosjean
  • Maldonado vows to keep 'extremely aggressive' style
  • Perez 'flies' when things are right - Sauber

Ecclestone to decide Nurburgring fate - spokesman

Uncertainty still surrounds the hosting of this year's German Grand Prix.

Just after Christmas, a major German newspaper declared that - despite the circuit's financial woes - the Nurburgring will run the early July event after all.

"Formula One will be held at the Nurburgring on July 7, 2013," Nurburgring Automotive GmbH spokesman Karl-Heinz Steinkuhler said.

"The major sponsors are making their bookings now."

But on Monday, Reuters reported that F1 packages for Germany in 2013 are still "conspicuously absent" from the usual ticket websites.

Administrators are current handling the Nurburgring's insolvency process, and spokesman Pietro Nuvoloni on Tuesday admitted uncertainty remains.

"The ball is currently with Bernie Ecclestone," he is quoted by Rhein Zeitung newspaper.

Reports have suggested meetings between the F1 chief executive and Nurburgring officials are scheduled for January in London.

"We hope there will be Formula One at the Nurburgring in 2013," said Nuvoloni.



Stewart wrong to say F1 poorly managed - FIA

An FIA spokesman has rejected F1 legend Sir Jackie Stewart's claim that the sport is disorganised and poorly managed.

Triple world champion Stewart, 73, said the post-season controversy over yellow flags in Brazil that for several days questioned Sebastian Vettel's latest title, was proof of the FIA's shortcomings.

"Was the judgement of yellow and green flags right or wrong in Brazil and why would that have to come up on a Wednesday or Thursday?" he told F1 business journalist Christian Sylt.

"That is a huge statement of a disorganised function that it should come up then," Stewart is quoted by cityam.com.

"The whole world is celebrating a new world champion and then that happens on a Wednesday. That is a poor declaration of management."

But an FIA spokesman hit back: "It was not a lack of management as there was no case to answer.

"Race control did not refer this to stewards because it was not deemed to be an incident."

Stewart, however, said the situation would be improved by replacing the system of rotating stewards at each grands prix and having at least "one man who goes to every race".

He also commented on the presidential style of Jean Todt, who since late 2009 has led the FIA in controversial predecessor Max Mosley's wake.

"I am surprised how silent Todt has been," said Stewart. "I expected him to have more presence.

"I don't know whether he's biding his time. I don't think he is by any means not smart so there must be a reason."



Lotus to launch new car in late January - Grosjean

Romain Grosjean has dropped a big hint about Lotus' 2013 plans, revealing the new Enstone-built single seater will be launched late this month.

Speaking to the French sports news programme Stade 2, the Frenchman also revealed that he and continuing Lotus teammate Kimi Raikkonen will equally share the twelve days of pre-season testing in February.

"The next few weeks for me will be intense training, with the presentation of the new car at the end of the month," said Grosjean.

"Then I will have six days of testing in February and then finally the beginning of the season in March," he added.

Grosjean, 26, also spoke about his tumultuous 2012 season, and his acknowledgement that he needs to maintain his new approach to F1.

"I do not think winning at all costs is the goal, because the dream is to become world champion one day.

"Of course it is true that you have to win races to be champion, but I must be careful not to mistake the goal," he added.

"That's what cost me the nickname 'First lap nutcase' last year," Grosjean admitted.

"It must be viewed in context. Mark Webber said it straight out of the car in Japan, with all the adrenaline of the race still inside him.

"I am not crazy, I am aware of the risks and I have worked hard to repair my mistakes.

"I apologised which is the most I can do. In the last five races I no longer had any problems and there is no reason that I will have them anymore."

Swiss-born Grosjean also admitted that, with Europe in the grip of winter, he is not contractually allowed to do any skiing.

Meanwhile, Ferrari has denied Italian media reports that said the next red single seater will be publicly launched on February 2.

"We will make an announcement when the date is decided," a spokesman insisted.



Maldonado vows to keep 'extremely aggressive' style

Pastor Maldonado insists he has no intention of easing what he describes as an "extremely aggressive" driving style.

Like Romain Grosjean, Williams driver and 2012 SpanishGP winner Maldonado was heavily criticised last season for being involved in too many on-track incidents.

One analysis showed he was the driver penalised most often by the FIA in 2012.

But the 27-year-old Venezuelan insisted: "Every time I walk down a hallway in my house and see everything I've got with this style, I think I should continue on this path.

"Yes, I've had run-ins with other drivers, not only now but in the past," Maldonado is quoted by Spain's Marca sports newspaper.

"But I have won in each of the categories in which I have competed.

"That gives me strength to keep going, because you can always improve," he added.



Perez 'flies' when things are right - Sauber

Sauber's team manager has farewelled recently departed Sergio Perez with a round of praise.

As the pundits assess McLaren's choice to replace Lewis Hamilton, Sauber team manager Beat Zehnder told Auto Motor und Sport that 22-year-old Mexican Perez should not be underestimated.

"In terms of tyre management," he said, "he is a natural talent.

"He has an incredibly good feeling for getting the best out of the tyres and at the same time keeping them alive.

"We've seen it a few times. If everything falls into place, he literally flies."

Zehnder admitted, however, that the answer is "in the stars" as to whether Perez can turn those skills into true championship-winning potential.

Indeed, Auto Motor und Sport said some at Sauber - the Swiss team that has hosted Perez since his F1 debut in 2011 - think Perez is immature, impatient, hot-headed and inconsistent.

As well as his 3 podiums, Perez failed to score a single point in 13 of last year's races, including his six-race drought after news broke he was heading to McLaren in 2013.

Martin Whitmarsh, his new boss, hopes Perez stays close to Jenson Button this year.

"Jenson is the easiest teammate to collaborate with," said the McLaren chief. "He is honest and open and willing to help.

"I hope Sergio is smart enough to recognise that he still has a lot to learn."


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