The IndyCar feature that Paul Ricard desperately needs in F1
The French Grand Prix offered a surprisingly interesting spectacle, despite the headache-inducing nature of the circuit. But IndyCar's Road America race offered far more in terms of action - and the increased jeopardy at the Elkhart Lake venue might be something Paul Ricard needs in future...
Let's face it: Paul Ricard is not a particularly good Formula 1 circuit – at least, for modern cars. The finicky nature of the opening sector often relegates the field of drivers into operating in a single file, and although the Signes and Le Beausset corners towards the end of the lap are challenging long-radius corners that reward bravery on the throttle, they also offer a different problem. The much-maligned 'dirty air' produced by modern racing cars often forces the car behind to wash out and lose grip, and drivers can only attempt to mount overtakes at both with a significant tyre advantage.
That, and the plethora of abrasive strips lining the circuit's perimeter are headache-inducing. Ultimately, they're a legacy of the circuit's days as a "high-tech test track" - providing a huge safety net for drivers suffering a slight lapse in concentration as they pound around the circuit for hours at a time. Those strips will peel some of the tyres' best days away from them but, given the run-off apparently extends into the horizon, do so in return for keeping the car out of the wall.
Despite appearing to adjust to life as a Ferrari driver with relative ease, it was far from straightforward under the surface for Carlos Sainz. But, having made breakthroughs in rather different routes at the Russian and Turkish races, he’s now targeting even greater feats for the rest of the Formula 1 season
Emerson Fittipaldi is better remembered for his Formula 1 world championships and Indianapolis 500 successes than for the spell running his eponymous F1 team. Despite a hugely talented roll call of staff, it was a period of internal strife, limited funding and few results - as remembered by Tim Wright.
In the 1960s and 1970s, McLaren juggled works entries in F1, sportscars and the Indy 500 while building cars for F3 and F2. Now it’s returning to its roots, expanding into IndyCars and Extreme E while continuing its F1 renaissance. There’s talk of Formula E and WEC entries too. But is this all too much, too soon? Stuart Codling talks to the man in charge.
Yuki Tsunoda arrived in grand prix racing amid a whirlwind of hype, which only increased after his first race impressed the biggest wigs in Formula 1. His road since has been rocky and crash-filled, and OLEG KARPOV asks why Red Bull maintains faith in a driver who admits he isn’t really that big a fan of F1?
OPINION: After Lewis Hamilton responded to reports labelling him 'furious' with Mercedes following his heated exchanges over team radio during the Russian Grand Prix, it provided a snapshot on how Formula 1 broadcasting radio snippets can both illuminate and misrepresent the true situation
OPINION: Valtteri Bottas is credited with pole position for the 2021 Turkish Grand Prix, despite being beaten in qualifying. This is another example of Formula 1 and the FIA scoring an own goal by forgetting what makes motorsport magic, with the Istanbul race winner also a victim of this in the championship’s recent history
Starting 11th after his engine change grid penalty, Lewis Hamilton faced a tough task to repeat his Turkish Grand Prix heroics of 2020 - despite making strong early progress in the wet. Instead, his Mercedes teammate Valtteri Bottas broke through for a first win of the year to mitigate Max Verstappen re-taking the points lead
Why the FIA rejected calls to ditch Paul Ricard sausage kerbs
Aston hopes French GP result silences F1 cheating accusations