F1: Raikkonen To Red Bull "Cool" - Hamilton; Alonso Not Tired Of Ferrari Photo:

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TMR Team | Jul, 12 2013 | 7 Comments

Lewis Hamilton thinks Kimi Raikkonen should leap at the chance to join Red Bull in 2014.

The Mercedes driver said Finn Raikkonen, who is currently weighing up between the move alongside Sebastian Vettel or staying at Lotus, would give Vettel "a hard time".

"It would be really cool to see Kimi in a Red Bull. He would give Seb a hard time," 2008 world champion Hamilton is quoted by the Sun.

"Kimi is an incredible driver, everyone knows that, so with an even better car it would be interesting to see what he does with that."

Hamilton, on the other hand, has often struggled to match up to his own teammate in 2013, having switched from McLaren to join Nico Rosberg at Mercedes.

But Ferrari's Fernando Alonso said he is not surprised by German Rosberg's top form.

"We saw him beat Michael (Schumacher) the last few years, and not because Michael had forgotten how to drive but because Nico did a fantastic job, and he's getting even better," the Spaniard told Sport Bild.



Alonso not tiring of life at Ferrari

Fernando Alonso has given a short life to speculation he might soon tire of failing to win titles with Ferrari.

Former F1 driver David Coulthard said he sensed the Spaniard, who turns 32 later this month, was becoming frustrated with Ferrari's flagging form last time out at the Nurburgring.

"It's a long time since Alonso won a world championship," BBC commentator Coulthard said, "and that's not because he's not putting in world championship level performances.

"If this continues for that much longer, you have to wonder how much longer Alonso can stay at Ferrari."

Alonso, however, is quoted by Wednesday's latest edition of German magazine Sport Bild as saying he remains fully committed to his long-term Ferrari contract -- and perhaps even beyond that.

"I have no idea how long I'll be in formula one," he said, "but if I renew (the contract beyond 2016), then it will be with Ferrari."

Indeed, while keen to add a third title to his tally, Alonso suggested that just as important to him is how he is perceived -- as perhaps F1's best driver.

"I am satisfied with myself and with my performance," he agreed.

"When I won my two titles, I felt the recognition of being regarded seriously as a good driver.

"Today I am seen as one of the best drivers, although I have not won another title since then," added Alonso.

McLaren boss Martin Whitmarsh would agree with Alonso, comparing him with F1's reigning triple world champion Sebastian Vettel, who looks set to win a fourth consecutive title in 2013.

The German "is an impressive driver", Whitmarsh admitted.

"But he will never get the recognition he deserves, as long as he drives for Red Bull."

Boss Christian Horner dismissed that view as "bullsh*t", but Alonso insisted: "Yes, every great champion should drive for Ferrari if he has the opportunity."

He said the Maranello marque is "more than a formula one team".

"F1 without Ferrari is inconceivable, but that doesn't apply to other teams that come and go.

"Some auto makers come in and then go out again," said Alonso. "The same for some private teams and energy drink manufacturers."

Alonso's last comment is a direct jibe at Red Bull, and indeed he said he would welcome Vettel as his teammate in red, and Adrian Newey as the designer of his Ferrari.

"I want to work with the best people," said the 31-year-old, "so if I said I didn't want Newey on the team, I'd be lying."



Honda to base F1 operations in UK

Honda on Thursday announced it will base its formula one operations in the UK.

After a six-year absence from the paddock, the Japanese carmaker is returning to the sport in 2015 as a supplier of works V6 power to McLaren.

Honda will develop and manufacture the engines in Japan, but the trackside operations will be based at a site in Milton Keynes, where the engines and energy recovery systems will also be maintained.

"With the confirmation of a new F1 operation base in the UK, our preparation to join F1 has become more specific and concrete," said motor sport chief Yasuhisa Arai.

Reigning world champions Red Bull are also based in Milton Keynes, a town in Buckinghamshire, England.



Montezemolo not ready for 2014 Massa talks

Luca di Montezemolo on Wednesday said he is not ready to talk about Felipe Massa's future at Ferrari.

The Brazilian has been involved in a string of on-track incidents dating back every race since Monaco, amid speculation the Italian team might finally choose another teammate for Fernando Alonso next season.

"Yes, these are critical moments," team boss Stefano Domenicali said after Massa's spin into retirement at the Nurburgring, "and of course we are not happy with the results.

"But we have to support Felipe, because the team is fighting for the constructors' championship."

Notwithstanding Domenicali's comments, 32-year-old Massa said he has "no idea" if his recent incidents had jeopardised his future.

And Ferrari president Montezemolo said on Wednesday: "(Massa's) Future? We will talk about that further down the line as there's no hurry."

Drivers including Nico Hulkenberg and Jules Bianchi have been linked with Massa's 2014 seat.

Massa was at Ferrari's Maranello factory to work in the simulator and meet with Montezemolo on Wednesday.

Montezemolo said: "Felipe is fully aware he can count on our total confidence in him.

"I hope he will soon secure the results that will show his talent to the full, such as the great starts he pulled off at the last two grands prix."

Former F1 engineer Gary Anderson, however, said Massa's recent mistakes have come at "the most inconvenient time" for the Brazilian, whose contract expires soon.

"The mistake at the Nurburgring is not one a driver of his calibre should be making," Anderson told Speed Week.

"Maybe it's time for Ferrari to get another driver who scores more regularly.

"Nico Hulkenberg is an obvious choice, but personally I would get Jules Bianchi. He is less likely to trouble Fernando's position as top dog," he added.



Interlagos moves to secure F1 future through 2020

Interlagos has moved a step closer to securing its future on the F1 calendar.

Earlier this year, the future of the Brazilian grand prix came into doubt when F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone said the venue in Sao Paulo must be upgraded.

But those fears eased when Ecclestone confirmed city mayor Fernando Haddad had written him a letter "and he's guaranteed to revamp the whole facilities there".

It was said a new contract through 2020 would then be signed.

Now, O Estado de S.Paulo newspaper is reporting that the city has indeed opened up bids for the construction of an all-new three-storey pit and paddock complex and revisions to the layout, to be ready for 2015.

The report said Sao Paulo is paying for the project through an agreement with the tourism ministry, aimed at "maintaining F1 in Brazil and in the city of Sao Paulo", according to spokesman Nunzio Briguglio.



Pirelli drops 'conservative' Hungary compound choice

Pirelli has reversed its decision to bring harder tyres to the forthcoming Hungarian grand prix.

Lotus had questioned the F1 supplier's "unusual" call in taking the same tyres to tight and twisty Hungary as it did to Bahrain and Silverstone.

Chief engineer Alan Permane added that Pirelli's choice was too "conservative", even though teams like Mercedes and Red Bull pushed for it.

But the BBC reports that Pirelli has now tweaked its compound choice for Hungary, replacing the 'hard' with the 'soft'.

The tyre supplier said the decision follows the introduction of the all-new tyre construction in Hungary, combining the 2012 carcass with this year's compounds.

"The change to the 2012 construction means that Hungary doesn't require such a hard compound now," said a spokesperson.


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