2017 Inside Line F1 Podcast: From T-Bone To T-Wing
The innovative but out-of-place ‘T-wing’ has been the talk of the paddock. After Mercedes unveiled this wing, most teams managed to get themselves one too. This is when Mercedes went further and got themselves two! I wonder how many they will have by the time we reach Melbourne. Either way, along with the ‘T-wing’, the shark-fin inspired whiteboards need to be banned by the FIA. But for these aero additions, the 2017 cars look sleek, sexy and stunning.
Like Gary Anderson pointed out on Autosport – these aero parts, if they move excessively while in motion could either be deemed illegal or ineffective. In this week’s episode of the Inside Line F1 Podcast, Mithila and I tell you that the ‘T-wing’ should go the ‘T-bone’ way – outlawed!
Car Launches, Liveries & Overtaking
Sauber’s cool blue does stand out and reminds us of an old Formula 1 team. However, the team ’25 years’ decal also indicates that the team lacks sponsors too. So that’s two elements Sauber will lack in 2017 – sponsors and speed! By the way, Williams’ unexpected reveal robbed Sauber of their pole position.
The same can actually be said about the Mclaren-Honda team too. The team’s new management is working hard to move on from the Ron Dennis era (dropping of the MP4) and evoke the nostalgia and legacy of Bruce Mclaren by reverting to the orange livery. The team’s orange-black livery seems like a cross between a Spycar and Midland car. Let’s remember, neither of those cars were quick.
While Mercedes conducted two full race simulations on the opening two days of the first test in Barcelona, Mclaren changed their Honda power units twice. Even a drag racing car’s engine lasts longer was the message I saw a few Formula 1 fans exchange on WhatsApp.
Force India aiming to be Mclaren?
Force India is working hard to be the old Mclaren of the new Formula 1 era – going by their adopted silver colour which evoked mixed reactions on social media. I wonder why the team dropped the Indian tricolour design which was voted as a fan favourite on social media a few seasons ago. The VJM10 has a ‘forehead’ and ‘nostrils’, thankfully no adult body parts yet.
Ferrari’s missed tribute to Jules Bianchi
As a name, Ferrari’s SF70H is a disappointment. There were leaked reports that their 2017 car would be named the SF17T-JB as a tribute to Jules Bianchi. While the pre-season timings seem impressive, the Ferrari car has a large whiteboard (shark-fin inspired!) which makes us feel like they’re flying the Italian National Flag!
Red Bull Racing’s RB13 launch campaign turned more heads than their timings, but I am sure that’s set to change. Toro Rosso’s ‘Superman’ colour livery looks the most stunning of the lot but their start to the 2017 Formula 1 Season was ominous after the Renault engine failed inside only 6 laps on their filming day. Lastly, Renault’s yellow-black taxi scheme seems underwhelming and they surely ran out of money to pay their team’s kit designer.
Will Max Verstappen Be Able To Overtake?
Lewis Hamilton and Felipe Massa have already reported their concerns of the aero heavy cars’ ability to follow each other closely – an issue that has led to a lack of overtaking in the past. If Hamilton states overtaking as a worry, Formula 1 should sit up and listen. Especially since there’s only one Max ‘Overtaking’ Verstappen!
Social Media Freedom
The post-Ecclestone era has already begun on a good note. Liberty Media has given the teams the liberty to upload video content on social media – a practice that was banned under Ecclestone’s regime. In fact, as we near the start of the season, there will be a set of regulations that will be released for teams and drivers to follow. This move should impact the fans as well as sponsors. Good move, Lewis. After all, he was one of the first to encourage Liberty Media to do so.
RAI Wins Hamilton’s Helmet Design Competition
Hamilton’s helmet design competition was won by Rai Caludo. Now there’s little you can’t win with a RAI(kkonen) in your name!
(Season 2017, Episode 08)