F1 2021 Season

  • The day many of you wished for has finally come - Match Day Score Predictions are no longer restricted to just 5 goals... *

    * The timing of this change is purely coincidental and has nothing to do with any perception of underperformance by any team in recent matches or fan pessimism, justified or otherwise, for future matches. (Probably).

Hephaestus

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Seeing reports that max may need a new engine and grid penalty? Seems too late unless reliability issue?
Don't think it's too late, as @macheda14 pointed out though, Max only needs 4th and a 1st. So if Red Bull think Hamilton is favourite to win Saudi Arabia anyway, why not take a 5 place penalty so you start 7th, aim for at least 4th and then turn it into a winner-takes-all shootout in Abu Dhabi where Max has the fresher ICE. There's obviously some risk being in the pack especially on a new street circuit with quite fresh tarmac but if you think that the Mercedes will be too quick in the last two races as things stand (which I kind of doubt but anyway), it makes sense to take that gamble.
 

Dan_F

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The approach for Mercedes in that case could be to use the same engine as last time for Saudi, then switch it back to the Brazil one for the final race so that it’s only the second time it’s used.

Of course they won’t know to do this until it’s too late, but if they get a big lead on Sunday then they could turn the engine right down anyway to limit the wear.
 

vangagal

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The approach for Mercedes in that case could be to use the same engine as last time for Saudi, then switch it back to the Brazil one for the final race so that it’s only the second time it’s used.

Of course they won’t know to do this until it’s too late, but if they get a big lead on Sunday then they could turn the engine right down anyway to limit the wear.
This is how i see it too. That Brazil specs is so powerfull.
 

Relfy

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It should be a cracking last two races and I just hope that the title is decided on the track and not due to a DNF or otherwise. Hamilton has all the momentum, but then has to take the bigger risks as he has to win, whereas Verstappen can afford to drive a little more risk averse (depending on position, of course) as he has the cushion of the points advantage, for Jeddah, at least. Abu Dhabi could be a straight shoot out. Whoever wins the title will have deserved it over the course of the season. Can Max and Red Bull hold their nerve?
 

sewey89

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I can't shake this thought from my head of Lewis winning but without the fastest lap this weekend so that he's 1 point behind going into the last race and Max just ploughing into him at the first turn of the final race, taking them both out and winning the WC :lol:
 

Buster15

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It should be a cracking last two races and I just hope that the title is decided on the track and not due to a DNF or otherwise. Hamilton has all the momentum, but then has to take the bigger risks as he has to win, whereas Verstappen can afford to drive a little more risk averse (depending on position, of course) as he has the cushion of the points advantage, for Jeddah, at least. Abu Dhabi could be a straight shoot out. Whoever wins the title will have deserved it over the course of the season. Can Max and Red Bull hold their nerve?
Quite so.
With an 8 point lead, Max and RB obviously have a big advantage.
Lewis has probably got to win the last 2 and get a minimum of 50 points.
Max simply has to make no mistakes and win one race and finish the other well.
RB tactics have been stronger than Mercedes.
It will come down to very fine margins and Lewis experience and mental toughness will be an advantage.

Just hope it goes down to the last race.
 

sun_tzu

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Quite so.
With an 8 point lead, Max and RB obviously have a big advantage.
Lewis has probably got to win the last 2 and get a minimum of 50 points.
Max simply has to make no mistakes and win one race and finish the other well.
RB tactics have been stronger than Mercedes.
It will come down to very fine margins and Lewis experience and mental toughness will be an advantage.

Just hope it goes down to the last race.
Yup - and I really hope that the decision to run around behind a safety car just long enough to not have to refund racegoers in spa doe not prove pivotal (I think max was 1st and lewis 2nd and half points awarded so 4 point lead to max)

A lewis win and max 2nd would really set up a pretty spectacular season finale though and hopefully one thats not decided with too much controversy (that said I think its pretty likey we will see some form of complaint from red bull and merc about each other before the end of the season)
 

Adam-Utd

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I really hope nothing iffy happens this weekend, and we can take the championship down to the last race.

We haven't had a last race title showdown in a long time it feels.
 

vangagal

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I really hope nothing iffy happens this weekend, and we can take the championship down to the last race.

We haven't had a last race title showdown in a long time it feels.
It was Rosberg's 2016, itsn't it?
Even that was a dull last race for me. Nothing really happened except for Lewis driving slowly at the front.
 

Adam-Utd

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It was Rosberg's 2016, itsn't it?
Even that was a dull last race for me. Nothing really happened except for Lewis driving slowly at the front.
Yeah, that didn't really feel like a proper battle either - I never once doubted Hamilton would win that.

This one feels different.
 

elmo

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The consistency and talent from either HAM or VER means if either of them have a slight advantage they win the race.

It's Hamilton's to lose in a weird twist because everything points to Merc continuing to have the same pace advantage during the previous wins, just as Red Bull had when they were winning.

It's incredible really, I don't think we've seen this level of consistency from drivers and such reliability in a car during races. Remember when engines used to blow up randomly during a race, it's so rare.

I just hope it's decided on track not with a final stewards decision a day after the final race!
No, at the end of the day it's still Max's to lose because theoretical points count for feck all.
 
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I've heard something along the lines that RB might consider Jeddah a bit of a lost cause so want a fresh engine for Abu Dhabi. Fact is, if all goes to form and there's no disasters Max would finish second with a 5 place penalty anyway. So if RB think they're most likely going to finish second in the race regardless, its not a bad plan.
Don’t know about that
Most likely would finish 3rd - got to think Bottas could be ahead of him. Especially if they think the race is a write off to Mercedes, Bottas must have a much quicker car as well.

Finishing 3rd with a Lewis win takes away what we know Max is prepared to do, he’ll do whatever to defend that place and would believe a crash that takes both out of the race is a tactic worth considering.
 

elmo

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I can't shake this thought from my head of Lewis winning but without the fastest lap this weekend so that he's 1 point behind going into the last race and Max just ploughing into him at the first turn of the final race, taking them both out and winning the WC :lol:
If that happens, surely that's points deduction for Max which will give Lewis the WDC.
 

11101

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if its deliberate they will just chuck him out of the championship like they did when Schumacher took out vielneuve

that said it does seem to be building to something like senna prost
Well he's already tried it once and got away with it so...
 

slyadams

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Don’t know about that
Most likely would finish 3rd - got to think Bottas could be ahead of him. Especially if they think the race is a write off to Mercedes, Bottas must have a much quicker car as well.

Finishing 3rd with a Lewis win takes away what we know Max is prepared to do, he’ll do whatever to defend that place and would believe a crash that takes both out of the race is a tactic worth considering.
I can't see it. I feel like Bottas would need an absolute rocket ship to beat Max in an actual race. In races where both Bottas and Max have finished this season Bottas has finished ahead of Max just once. I'd feel pretty comfortable if Max started 7th or 8th he'd still finish 2nd barring any issues. However, I concede this is a track we have no knowledge of, it could be a Monaco in terms of ability to overtake.
 
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Frosty

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I see the press is criticising Hamilton for Mercedes decision to use the company that made the Grenfell cladding as a sponsor.

They do realise that he doesn't choose the sponsors, right?
 

Adam-Utd

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Got a feeling this race will be either absolutely bonkers or put to sleep boring.

I'm leaning towards the former. A very high chance of a safety car too i'd expect.
 

F-Red

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Got a feeling this race will be either absolutely bonkers or put to sleep boring.

I'm leaning towards the former. A very high chance of a safety car too i'd expect.
Agreed, I’m hopeful the high speed nature will lend to bonkers. I’d say a high chance of a red flag during the race as well with the limited run off areas.
 

Dargonk

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Best case for the neutral would be a Hamilton win, with max finishing in a decent position. Sets it up for a winner takes all race in the last round. Really hope this is what we get.
 

Camilo

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I see the press is criticising Hamilton for Mercedes decision to use the company that made the Grenfell cladding as a sponsor.

They do realise that he doesn't choose the sponsors, right?
Considering most modern homes will have kingspan used as insulation I can't really see the outrage here.
 

pauldyson1uk

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Max Verstappen sees little benefit in taking on a fresh Honda engine for the final two races of the 2021 championship, as the change would not result in a performance similar to what Mercedes has received.

In a bid to give title contender Lewis Hamilton an edge this weekend, Mercedes has assigned to the Briton the fresh power unit he used to good effect in Brazil, a decision justified by Jeddah's high-speed profile that will require maximum power output.

But Verstappen believes that Honda's engines remain powerful and reliable despite their increased mileage, which implies that there would be little benefit in suffering a five-place grid penalty for the sake of taking on a fresh unit.

"Well, we don't have that peak [in power] with a new engine as Mercedes has," said Verstappen on Thursday.

"Our engine is actually pretty consistent throughout its lifespan. So doing an engine change like that doesn't really bring us a lot."


However, Red Bull motorsport boss Helmut Marko has allegedly said that the Milton Keynes-based outfit is still mulling an engine change for the final round in Abu Dhabi for reliability purposes.

But the Dutchman believes that "we should be able to make it" to Yas Marina with his current pool of engines.

Hamilton's consecutive wins in Sao Paulo in Qatar, where he reduced his deficit to Verstappen in the Drivers' standings to 8 points, suggest that the Briton and Mercedes have the wind to their back ahead of F1's showdown.

But Verstappen says circumstances could come into play this weekend and make or break either team's chances.

"I don’t believe in something like momentum myself," he said. "You have to perform and do well every weekend again.

"We'll see this weekend, but I always find it hard to predict what the situation will be like exactly. It's all in the details, but more things can happen on a street circuit than on a normal circuit anyway."
 

sewey89

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I think the title will be decided this weekend. Maybe not mathematically, but I just have a feeling that one of them will have an issue and get a DNF or finish way down.

It'd be a real shame as this season deserves a proper climax and a final race shoot out.
 

Eendracht maakt macht

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Mercedes is much stronger at the moment so Verstappen needs a bit of luck. A lot can happen in two races so exciting times. Hope it not gets decided in the jury room.
 

Dan_F

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I think the title will be decided this weekend. Maybe not mathematically, but I just have a feeling that one of them will have an issue and get a DNF or finish way down.

It'd be a real shame as this season deserves a proper climax and a final race shoot out.
It might not even take something as drastic as that. I can see a situation where someone pits under a safety car period and gets a massive advantage to win the race that they were otherwise losing.

I hope it goes to the final race too, but it’s much easier to say that as a Hamilton fan. If the tables were turned I’d be wanting it done this weekend.
 

sun_tzu

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It might not even take something as drastic as that. I can see a situation where someone pits under a safety car period and gets a massive advantage to win the race that they were otherwise losing.

I hope it goes to the final race too, but it’s much easier to say that as a Hamilton fan. If the tables were turned I’d be wanting it done this weekend.
Pèrez to do a Nelson piquet junior and tactically go into the wall...

Wouldn't rule it out with how bitter this battle between merc and red bull is getting
 

Jippy

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Considering most modern homes will have kingspan used as insulation I can't really see the outrage here.
It's stupid to blame Hamilton but Kingsland are a despicable company and Mercedes should be ashamed at using them as a sponsor.

Not sure why the fact their shitty death trap products they lied about are in many homes should quell any outrage:houllier:
 

Cheimoon

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Another newb question

How does Perez "help" Max?
Apart from by crashing other racers of the track (no, not actually), if Perez is ahead of Hamilton, he can block his progress. For example: Hamilton does an early pit stop and gets back on the track behind Perez. As Hamilton is now on fresh tires, he will be able to go quicker than others and move through the pack quickly, while other racers will also get out of the way by pitting themselves. Once Hamilton reaches Perez this way (whom Hamilton is expected to take over given his superior speed and skill), then Perez can help Verstappen by being hard to overtake (within the rules of racing), thus holding up Hamilton and making him lose time.

Similar with Perez keeping back Bottas, since if Bottas in whatever situation is ahead of Max, he is also expected to hold up Max - even if Bottas has generally been spectactularly poor at doing so this season. Of course, Perez and Bottas can also race for themselves, but since they are much slower than Verstappen and Hamilton and less likely to win anything major, the better team approach for them is to play second fiddle in a more strategic role.

On a separate note, I always like Verstappen's interviews (like the one posted by @pauldyson1uk above). I see more of it in Dutch media, where he has this great no-nonsense approach, just tersely speaking his mind without playing games. No bigging himself or others up or the inverse, just realism (from his perspective anyway). I prefer that over the mindgames and political answers.