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Formula 1 2012: Chinese Grand Prix

Race 3 of the 2012 Formula 1 season brings the series to Shanghai for the Grand Prix of China. Even before the race itself, drama was running high. Nico Rosberg drove to his first pole in 111 races and in the process gave Mercedes its first since Juan Manuel Fangio at Monza in 1955. At the same time, defending champion Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull) failed to make into Q3 for the first time since 2009, taking 11th on the grid and being out-qualified by teammate Mark Webber for the third time this s...

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Formula 1 2012: Malaysian Grand Prix

McLaren locked down the front row for the second consecutive race, with Lewis Hamilton once again edging out Jenson Button. But lurking at P3, his highest qualifying position since 2006, was Mercedes’ Michael Schumacher. And with rain beginning to fall, both Schumacher, a historically great wet-weather racer and Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel, who started today in P6, were looking good. Hamilton held the lead from the start, with Button also holding P2. Schumacher spun on Lap 1...

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Formula 1 2012: Australian Grand Prix

Free at last! Let those racecars run! The winter was short, and even shorter what with personnel moves, technical adjustments, and shifting teams. Testing helped break the ice. But there’s nothing like actual points competition. And the season starts in Australia with a classic the-more-things-change the-more-they-stay-the-same setup. On the change side, Red Bull Racing – for which two-time consecutive champion Sebastian Vettel ran the table in 2011 -- is relegated to Row 3 of the s...

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Formula 1: McLaren's Martin Whitmarsh on US Grand Prix

Racecar Engineering interviewed McLaren's head Martin Whitmarsh on a wide variety of topics relating to the upcoming 2012 Formula 1 season, including the series' November return to the United States at Circuit of the America's, in Austin, Texas, for the US Grand Prix. The excerpts pertaining to the US Grand Prix are below, with full Q&A available here.  We’re going to Austin, Texas this year. How important is it for the fans, the sport and the sponsors to...

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F1: Countdown to Austin 2012 - Brazilian Grand Prix

Well, that's a wrap. The last race of the season didn't go entirely to script (my version: Sebastian Vettel leading from start to finish to close the year in much the way he ran it), but in so doing served as the second consecutive reminder of how thin the margin of even Vettel's dominating performance was. He didn't repeat Abu Dhabi's DNF, but a gimpy gearbox detected on Lap 16 forced him from the lead on Lap 30 and left his point average over the last two events at 9. Project that over the cou...

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F1: Countdown to Austin 2012 - Grand Prix of Abu Dhabi

The Grand Prix of Abu Dhabi was a good reminder as the 2011 season winds down of exactly how fine the line between champion and also-ran can be in Formula 1. Practice sessions saw the continued ascent of McLaren whose cars consistently ran better than Red Bull. Lewis Hamilton in particular had always been very fast at Abu Dhabi and this continued to be the case, with the assembled well-heeled masses given good reason to believe that Sebastian Vettel and Red Bull's stranglehold on ...

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F1: Countdown to Austin 2012 - Korean Grand Prix

And that's a championship again! RBR-Renault secured its second consecutive Formula 1 manufacturers' championship at the Korean Grand Prix in Yeongam, though not without at least a small fight. Lewis Hamilton (McLaren) became the first non-Red Bull pole-sitter of the 2011 season in Korea. By Turn 4,  however, Sebatian Vettel had claimed P1 and his Red Bull teammate Mark Webber passed Jenson Button in the other McLaren to move into 3rd place. Vitaly...

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F1: Countdown to Austin 2012 - Singapore Grand Prix

Monza and the Italian Grand Prix brought the European portion of the 2011 Formula One season to a close and brought Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull) within striking distance of becoming the youngest back-to-back F1 champion ever. Singapore is the first of three consecutive races in the Far East, the only one on a street circuit, and the longest race of the year. It is also the only night race on the Formula One calendar.   Going into the weekend there were a number of possible outcom...

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F1: Countdown to Austin 2012 - Hungarian Grand Prix

Photo: Derszi Elekes Andor Entering the Hungarian Grand Prix reigning champion and current championship leader Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull) hadn't won for two races in row for the first time all year. In the immediately prior event, his home German Grand Prix, he didn't even make the podium. Vettel came into Hungary clearly intent on putting all of that into his reviews, taking pole over the previous two race winners -- Fernando Alonso (Ferrari, P5) and Le...

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F1: Countdown to Austin - US GP November 2012....maybe

A revised 2012 Formula One schedule was said to be circulating in the paddock at Budapest this morning which would both increase the number of back to back weekends to six from the current two and move the innaugural US Grand Prix to November from June 17. Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Tex., site of the US Grand Prix, said that they have not received word of any planned changes and are proceeding toward completion for a June race. For its part, the Federation...

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