What did we learn from Monza?


Well, we learned that Hamilton continues to be the class act in the circus, Nico Rosberg should stay home with his new baby and the FIA and its stewards are a bunch of winkers (the “a” key just fell off).

Let’s look at the FIA first. Totally ridiculous “rules” are brought in, complete with draconian penalties – remember the last race with 105 grid spot penalties for the McLaren team for changing engines. Not any better engines, just replacements for the ones blown up! This time they brought in a rule that the tyre pressures at the start of the race had to be a minimum of 19.5 psi. Both Mercedes cars had broken this new “rule” with FIA Technical Delegate’s report document stating that the measured minimum starting pressure on the left-hand rear Pirelli on Hamilton’s car was 0.3 psi below and Rosberg’s car was 1.1 psi below. Pirelli had apparently mandated the minimum pressure as a safety measure following the failures at Spa. Now whilst “safety” is important, the tyres are more likely to go poof through debris, stones, carbon fiber shards than they are off the start line. Tyre pressures also go up as soon as the car is rolling, and 0.3 psi is about as much as you can generate passing wind. To suggest that Hamilton be given a 25 second penalty for this “huge” transgression is nonsense (as are most FIA edicts these days). It should also be noted that the drivers were told they were not to openly criticize the Pirelli tyres. They were, however, allowed to comment on whether the coffee was too hot.

Now to the race, or rather the procession. The start was chaotic, with Kimi Raikkonen on grid slot 2 falling asleep at the wheel and then pushing the wrong buttons, and while the entire field managed to miss him, Maldonado in the “Lotus” still managed to clobber somebody else, and Grosjean in the other “Lotus” managed to copy his team mate and both cars were out on the first lap. With Bernie E reputedly paying the “Lotus” salaries to keep the team in the game, I think you will find that the famous name will be missing in 2016.

After the first corner, Hamilton’s Mercedes (aided by the 0.3 psi), just drove off into the distance, with Vettel (Ferrari) leading the rest of the also-rans, with only six finishing on the same lap as Hamilton. They were Vettel Ferrari 25 seconds adrift, Massa Williams 47 seconds behind, followed by team mate Bottas 48 seconds, the recovering Raikkonen Ferrari 68 seconds and Perez Force India 73 seconds adrift. Hardly what you would call a tight finish.

Non-finishers, after the “Lotus” duo, included Alonso in the McLaren with six laps to go with some electrical malady (perhaps the bill not paid?), and then Rosberg, whose Mercedes engine went bang with three laps to go, but we are told it was his old one (probably used as a Berlin taxi before being put in Nico’s unsuspecting race car).

Monza did nothing for the failing F1 circus, and it is about time the FIA stopped trying to manipulate the events. Mario, the local barber in Monza, can tell you to get rid of the wings, DRS sections, electric motors, stupid rules with even more silly penalties and encourage radical thinking instead of suppressing it.

Will Singapore on the 20th be any better? On that Mickey Mouse circuit, I doubt it unfortunately.