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Thread: 2008 Formula One Bahrain Grand Prix

  1. #1
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    2008 Formula One Bahrain Grand Prix

    This weekend sees the Formula One circus move to the Kingdom of Bahrain for the fifth running of the Bahrain Grand Prix. As has all too often been the case over the past season or so, the sport has a cloud of controversy following it wherever it may go. However, I don't think the sport has ever seen one quite like the one that shook the world's motorsport fans last Sunday, the fallout from which looks nowhere near settling. With Max Mosley absent from this Grand Prix for obvious reasons, let's hope that all the talk this weekend is about what goes on on the black stuff rather than one what certain people choose to do (or have done to them!) in seedy London basement apartments. Somehow, I doubt it will be though...

    Ferrari go into the race on a high after a very strong showing last time out in Malaysia, spoiled only by Felipe Massa's unforced error and DNF. They should have every right to be confident of a race victory this weekend, especially as they were only one of two teams (Toyota being the other) to have tested at this very circuit over the winter. Both Ferrari and arch-rivals McLaren have tried to play down the significance of this testing session, but the advantage should definitely be there, no matter how small, as Ferrari absolutely obliterated Toyota in that particular winter test.

    McLaren will be looking to bounce back after they dropped the ball big time with their needless-penalty hit weekend in Malaysia. That's not a mistake we will ever be seeing again, as the rules for qualification have since been tweaked to avoid that situation, but McLaren will know that their weekend will need to be perfect if they are to keep pace with the Ferraris. One suspects it will also need to be perfect if they are to stay ahead of the BMWs, who have looked extremely strong so far this season.

    After the two "fly away" races down under, this will be the first race we will be seeing some of the updated aerodynamic packages for some of the teams. We will see if anyone has made any significant progress back in the windtunnels while the race teams have been jet-setting around the globe. We probably won't be seeing any widespread, major updates until they hit Barcelona next time out, but there will be tweaks aplenty for the more well-heeled teams. It will be interesting to keep an eye on who has made steps forward or not.

    The race will be the third hot race in a row for the drivers and teams to contend with, but this time out they will have new foes to contend with in the form of dust and high winds instead of the extreme humidity down under. Due to the very exposed nature of the track wind has often been an issue here, and this weekend the predictions are for it to be especially windy here. This is bad news for the drivers on two fronts: firstly the wind blows dust onto the circuit giving unpredictable traction; secondly it can play havoc with the cars' delicately balanced aerodynamic setups. A strong gust of wind during one of the Sakhir circuit's numerous high-speed, high-downforce corners can easily cause a sudden loss of grip.

    The drivers should definitely be earning their wages if the winds are up as high as predicted, and it should keep things exciting to watch...
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  2. #2
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    Practice in 20 minutes.

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    Ferrari were clearly impressive in the first session at Sakhir, taking a comfortable 1-2 on the timesheets. The other team to really impress were Williams finishing third an sixth. It should be noted that their times were set late in the session while they were running qualifying simulations. Not many other teams did such short runs. Elsewhere there was a disappointing start to the weekend for Honda who were battling with the Super Aguris and Force Indias all morning.

    Practice One results

    1. MASSA Ferrari 1m32.233s
    2. RAIKKONEN Ferrari 1m32.350s
    3. ROSBERG Williams 1m32.415s
    4. HAMILTON McLaren 1m32.705s
    5. KOVALAINEN McLaren 1m32.868s
    6. NAKAJIMA Williams 1m33.121s
    7. KUBICA BMW 1m33.333s
    8. TRULLI Toyota 1m33.539s
    9. COULTHARD Red Bull 1m33.788s
    10. ALONSO Renault 1m33.815s
    11. GLOCK Toyota 1m33.929s
    12. WEBBER Red Bull 1m33.950s
    13. PIQUET Renault 1m33.981s
    14. HEIDFELD BMW 1m34.106s
    15. BOURDAIS Toro Rosso 1m34.235s
    16. VETTEL Toro Rosso 1m34.321s
    17. FISICHELLA Force India 1m34.892s
    18. BUTTON Honda 1m34.915s
    19. BARRICHELLO Honda 1m35.174s
    20. SUTIL Force India 1m35.429s
    21. DAVIDSON Super Aguri 1m36.145s
    22. SATO Super Aguri 1m36.536s
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    Under fire Ferrari driver Felipe Massa emerged from Friday's first two practice sessions with his head held high after finishing at the top of the time sheets both times. He ended up with a fastest time almost a whole second faster than teammate Kimi Raikkonen after a low fuel run at the end of second practice. This was a devastating demonstration of just what the F2008 is capable of, and will likely have a few teams seriously worried.

    However, McLaren have more pressing matters at hand after Lewis Hamilton crashed heavily in second practice causing extensive damage to the MP4-28. He rode a little too high on the kerbs between turns six and seven and the back end stepped out viciously, sending him sliding side-on into the barriers at high speed. There will be some sleepless nights as the mechanics will be working round the clock to get the car ready for tomorrow's qualifying. Thankfully Hamilton himself emerged unscathed, but he and the team clearly have a LOT of work to do to get their weekend back on track.

    Elsewhere, Williams continued to impress, Honda improved this session, Sebastien Bourdais had a superb run to put him in ninth, Kubica showed BMW's pace whilst teammate Nick Heidfeld had a very disappointing session.

    Advantage Ferrari...

    Practice Two Times

    1. MASSA Ferrari 1m31.412s
    2. RAIKKONEN Ferrari 1m32.327s
    3. KOVALAINEN McLaren 1m32.752s
    4. HAMILTON McLaren 1m32.847s
    5. KUBICA BMW 1m32.915s
    6. ROSBERG Williams 1m33.022s
    7. COULTHARD Red Bull 1m33.048s
    8. NAKAJIMA Williams 1m33.098s
    9. BOURDAIS Toro Rosso 1m33.197s
    10. PIQUET Renault 1m33.247s
    11. BUTTON Honda 1m33.710s
    12. ALONSO Renault 1m33.755s
    13. WEBBER Red Bull 1m33.782s
    14. TRULLI Toyota 1m33.822s
    15. GLOCK Toyota 1m33.856s
    16. BARRICHELLO Honda 1m33.966s
    17. HEIDFELD BMW 1m34.023s
    18. FISICHELLA Force India 1m34.388s
    19. SUTIL Force India 1m34.405s
    20. VETTEL Toro Rosso 1m34.787s
    21. SATO Super Aguri 1m35.288s
    22. DAVIDSON Super Aguri 1m35.712s
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    They're going to miss that traction control in the sand.

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    I watched the second practice today on "Speed" and was amused again by the driving
    without traction control this year. I think it's great in a way that without the use of,
    traction control the real talent of the drivers can be shown. And as always "Speed"
    commentator David Hobbs also made the remark that if the drivers had traction control
    that there would'nt have been so many "offs" this season. I'm looking forward to the
    qualifying, and the race itself,and hoping Ferrari can pull a 1,2.

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    Rosberg p1, Webber p3 in pracy 3. Id be happier if they were reversed but hey, thats not bad...
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    What do the engines idle at?

    So far in Q1 with 2:40 odd to go, 2nd fastest team through the speed traps is Toro Rosso.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kitdy View Post
    What do the engines idle at?

    So far in Q1 with 2:40 odd to go, 2nd fastest team through the speed traps is Toro Rosso.
    I would say 5 or 6 k rpm.
    If you should see a man walking down a crowded street talking aloud to himself, don't run in the opposite direction, but run towards him, because he's a poet. You have nothing to fear from the poet - but the truth.

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  11. #11
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    BMW ON POLE!!!

    Light on fuel!

  12. #12
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    Go Kubica (I hope he doesn't blow it)
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    Yaay! Go Robert! The first Pole on pole

    He probably is light on fuel, but that's not such a bad thing when you're starting from PP. I only hope there won't be any nasty surprises like broken gearboxes (seems not to be a problem this year), stupid changes of strategy or Japanese rookies trying to take him from behind. Gonna see. I'm keeping my fingers crossed (or as we say here: I'm holding my thumbs)
    It's not denial. I'm just very selective about the reality I accept.

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    Damn! I missed the quali So, Kubica's on pole?

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by faksta View Post
    Damn! I missed the quali So, Kubica's on pole?
    Yup

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    Last edited by go.pawel; 04-05-2008 at 06:34 AM.
    It's not denial. I'm just very selective about the reality I accept.

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