A new turbo for improved harvesting was introduced by Honda at the Canadian Grand Prix. But the big turbo – outside the vee – is scheduled for next year. It’s finally been acknowledged that the small turbine and compressor required for the ‘inside the vee’ turbo format cannot provide competitive power.
Because of the estimated 30 per cent greater load on cars with the advent of the 2017 technical regulations, brake manufacturer Brembo calculates that uprating calipers and uprights accordingly will add 6kg to each corner of the car.
Sport for Rights – a campaign launched by Azerbaijan human rights activist Rasul Jafarov – held a conference in London ahead of the inaugural Azerbaijan F1 race. It claimed the country’s government had imprisoned human rights defenders, journalists, bloggers, activists and opposition politicians, often without trial. It had, claimed the report, “Allowed a climate of impunity for violence against journalists with no justice for attacks against journalists, including the murder or death in custody of four journalists since 2005.” The report went on to highlight the cases of a social media activist sentenced to eight years, an opposition politician serving a seven-year term and a pro-opposition news presenter jailed for five years.
The Mercedes-developed cockpit halo design has been chosen over the Red Bull canopy for 2017 introduction after further tests on the latter. Close video examination of the original research showed the angle of attack meant part of the wheel actually hit the top of the cockpit rather than the canopy, helping it clear the cockpit. With this corrected at the subsequent test, the wheel went through the canopy and into the cockpit area. Side impact tests also showed an unacceptably high g-loading on a driver’s helmet against the canopy top.
A wing flexibility controversy is raging behind the scenes after footage from the Spanish Grand Prix showed how Ferrari’s rear wing lowered above a certain load, reducing its drag. Ferrari is counter-claiming that Red Bull’s front wing might contravene the regulations.
Daniel Ricciardo admitted in Montréal that he was so angered by Red Bull team’s pit error – when his tyres were still in the garage as he pulled up at the pits, losing him victory in Monaco – that he put himself out of contact for a few days. “I definitely felt after the race that I wasn’t in a place, probably no one was in a place, to resolve what happened. I needed just to get away for a few days and then address what happened once we’d cooled and settled.” Rumours persist that Ferrari would very much like to get his signature on a contract after his current Red Bull deal expires at the end of 2018.
Drivers met in Montréal to discuss the idea of introducing a policy of having to surrender a place for having failed to suffer a disadvantage by missing out part of track (as Lewis Hamilton did at Monaco in his battle with Daniel Ricciardo).
Heineken’s sponsorship of F1 was announced in Montréal. It’s worth £70 million per year until at least 2020, when there is a break point in the contract, but is expected to be extended until at least 2023.