F1 Voices Not Keen On Jet Canopy Proposal Photo:
Mike Stevens | Jul, 19 2011 | 0 Comments

The floated proposal to put a jet-fighter-style canopy over the heads of F1 drivers has attracted both positive and negative comment from the sport's insiders.

After the incidents involving Felipe Massa and the late Henry Surtees in 2009, technical chiefs started looking into the possibility of canopies or polycarbonate screens for the cars' cockpits.

The FIA has released a video showing a F1 wheel being fired at 225kph at a jet-fighter canopy and a proposed cockpit screen.

"Full scientific results of the firings ... have now been presented to the Formula One technical working group," the video revealed.

1992 world champion and occasional F1 steward Nigel Mansell admitted: "I don't know if I'd like to see that. It wouldn't really be Formula One," he is quoted by ennstal-classic.at.

Another former driver Marc Surer agrees: "It would be very warm in there, and then the next problem is needing an air conditioner. And imagine if KERS fails and the vapours get into the cockpit."

Christian Danner said: "The visibility of the drivers will be affected by the reflection."

Mercedes' Norbert Haug told Bild am Sonntag newspaper: "We are always interested in the advancement of safety. It's an interesting experiment but I feel that a single seater cockpit needs to be open."

But Nico Rosberg said: "It sounds good. Anything that increases safety is a step forward."



Buemi 'better than current results' - Marko

Sebastien Buemi's place at Toro Rosso appears safe for now.

After teammate Jaime Alguersuari put in a string of good results, reports suggested Swiss Buemi, 22, is now most in danger of losing his full-time seat to Daniel Ricciardo in 2012.

But Blick newspaper quotes Red Bull's driver manager Dr Helmut Marko as saying: "Buemi is definitely better than his current results."

The Swiss publication also quoted Buemi as expressing confidence in himself.

"I have confidence with the car, I'm fast - but luck is sometimes just not with you. Eventually it will come back to me," he said.

Meanwhile, Buemi has celebrated with his grandfather Georges Gachnang, who has restored the Cooper Monaco in which he contested Le Mans in 1960.

"Without his passion, I would not have become a racing driver," he said.



France to propose F1 return for 2013 - report

Plans to revive the French Grand Prix are progressing, the sports daily L'Equipe reports.

The working group put together by prime minister Francois Fillon is reportedly working on a letter of intent to send to F1 chief executive Bernie Ecclestone.

The letter will outline the plans to alternate a race annually with Belgium's famous Spa-Francorchamps circuit, with the French edition to take place at Le Castellet.

L'Equipe said the letter will also propose a date for the French grand prix, a budget for the sanctioning fee payable to Ecclestone and outlines for sponsorships.

The report added that France's goal is to have a Grand Prix back on the calendar in late August or early September in 2013.



No state support for Nurburgring after 2011 - minister

This weekend's German grand prix will be the last race at the Nurburgring supported by the state, according to a government minister.

Earlier this year, it emerged that the new SPD/Green government alliance for the Rhineland-Palatinate state was only willing to support two more races at the Nurburgring until the current arrangements expire in 2016.

"Until 2016, there will be only one formula one grand prix sponsored financially by the land, and it's 2011," Eveline Lemke told business newspaper Handelsblatt. "That's it."



Rosberg hopes for Nurburgring rain

Nico Rosberg has admitted he is hoping for some of the Nurburgring's famous weather to strike this weekend.

"So far we do not have a really top car but the weather could be a chance for us to do a bit better," the Mercedes driver, during a visit to the DTM show event on Sunday at Munich's Olympic Stadium, is quoted by SID news agency.

The early weather reports are indeed calling for more rain in the Eifel mountains throughout this week and into the German grand prix weekend.

McLaren's Lewis Hamilton on Friday recalled his first Nurburgring race in 2007, when a huge downpour struck a few laps in.

"The weather (at the circuit) can turn in a matter of moments - you can have all the seasons in one afternoon," he said.



Sauber happy with team and driver lineup

Peter Sauber has revealed he is happy with the performance of his Swiss Formula One team so far in 2011.

After a difficult season in 2010 following BMW's withdrawal, Sauber is currently sixth in the constructors' championship behind Red Bull, McLaren, Ferrari, Mercedes and Renault.

"We are well ahead of our direct rivals Toro Rosso, Force India and Williams," the team owner and boss wrote in a column for Sonntagsblick newspaper.

"I am particularly pleased that at the last race at Silverstone we were clearly ahead of Renault and on a par with Mercedes. It has paid off for us to build a car that treats the tyres gently."

Peter Sauber said the Hinwil based team is happy with its drivers Sergio Perez and Kamui Kobayashi and hinted that both will be retained.

"Kamui has grown into a good leadership role and Sergio has shown that he is not only fast but can also race very consistently. For the future, in this respect, I am very much relaxed!" he wrote.

"Overall we have done a good job this year so far even if we have a lot of untapped potential in qualifying.

"Our team has stabilised significantly over the past year in every respect, which is the basis for us to continue to move towards the front," said Sauber.



2012 race seat crucial for F1 career - Hulkenberg

Nico Hulkenberg has admitted it is crucial for him to return to the Formula One grid in 2012.

After making a solid debut in 2010 with Williams, the 23-year-old German was replaced for this season by Pastor Maldonado.

"The timing of the decision was not perfect, because all of the other seats were already taken," he said.

Hulkenberg rescued his career by moving to Force India with a deal that involves him driving during Friday morning practice at every grand prix in 2011.

"The test driving is not much and it's frustrating, but it's better than nothing," he said in an interview with Dutch magazine Formule 1. "Luckily I can at least drive on Fridays.

"This one season is not fatal to my career, but next year I have to have a race seat. Otherwise it's difficult for me," Hulkenberg said.


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