Gives you wings?
- Jan 11, 2007
- Adelaide, Australia
- Holden Commodore SV6 MY14
Ok guys, welcome to the Malaysian Grand Prix thread. So we got to see the new formula for the first time at Melbourne and how the teams have got to grips (or havent yet) with the new technologies. There's no doubt the noise of the engines is a fairly divisive issue between us and it's not likely to change any time soon. But I'd like to move away from that discussion - just a bit of house keeping this thread is for the Malaysian Grand Prix so any discussions re air freight logistics can be had in the other threads here, unless it's pertinent to the race. Thanks
So what can we expect for Malaysia? Well it's going to be hot and sticky as Malaysia usually is. That means the teams are going to have to cut some holes and try to maximise cooling and keep the ERS in the ideal operating window. Also spare a thought for Kevin Magnussen and Danil Kyvat who wont be used to having to race for up to two hours in the tropical heat. Kyvat actually ran out of water very early on in Australia, he's going to have to ration it out a bit for this one!
What else? Can Mercedes be caught? can McLaren deliver on their promise to be 0.5s quicker? Where are Ferrari and Red Bull really at? Can Red Bull obey a direction from the FIA regarding fuel flow if required? Can Max Chilton out qualify and finish ahead of his teammate again?
Lets think back for a bit. Who here remembers the 1999 inaugural event?
Well it was the penultimate round of the 1999 F1 championship and was notable for the return of Michael Schumacher after his accident at Silverstone, as well as the infamous and somewhat farcical Ferrari bargeboard saga.
It was an interesting lead up to the event as Schumacher had spent the last three months on the sidelines with a broken leg while Mika Salo drove in his place, scoring some good results at Hockenheim and Monza. But the Ferrari president felt that in order to truly take the might to Mika Hakkinen and McLaren he needed his star driver back in the seat to play shotgun for Irvine?s title bid, a scenario thought to be extremely unsatisfactory for Schumacher. He did actually test at Monza and set some quick times but still complained of pain and altogether appeared unwilling to drive for the rest of the season and especially unwilling to help Irvine. But rumour has it Montezemolo phoned Schumacher?s home in Switzerland and it was the German?s young daughter Gina Maria who answered and said her father was out playing football. LDM made it very clear that the German was expected to be on a plane for Malaysia.
In true Schumacher style, he wiped the floor with everyone in qualifying, setting a lap time almost a second faster than his teammate and aspiring world champion Eddie Irvine. Mika Hakkinen as the other combatant for the world championship lined up fourth for McLaren.
So Schumacher led away off the line and very shortly after let his teammate past into the lead while he proceeded to block the chasing David Coulthard and Hakkinen to allow Irvine to build a lead. However Coulthard was able to force his way past but broke down before he could mount a challenge on Irvine.
As the pitstops were completed Schumacher allowed Irvine to pass once again to take the win while Hakkinen had to settle for third after a hard fought race With Johnny Herbert?s Stewart Ford.
However, the drama was only just starting to unfold. The stewards found the bargeboards on both Ferraris to be illegal and subsequently threw the red cars out of the race, making Hakkinen world champion. Ferrari immediately lodged an appeal, claiming the measuring devices the stewards used were faulty (sound familiar? ). The appeal was upheld a few days later and Ferrari were allowed to keep the result in a move that drew criticisms of favouritism as it was clear the sport?s paymasters were keen to see the title race go to the final race in Japan.
We have a few days before the race, chip in with your thoughts, expectations, etc!