Is Formula 1 going to be ready for the fast approaching new turbo era? 8 November, 2013 The world of Formula 1 enters a new era in 2014 With the business end of the 2013 F1 World Championship nearly done, the focus is now firmly on 2014 but some respected voices in the paddock are wondering about the true state of readiness for the revolutionary season which gets underway in just over two months, starting with testing at Jerez on 19-22 January. Quadruple World Champion, and now Renault ambassador, Alain Prost believes that some teams may be overstretched, with the all new V6 turbo engine formula fast approaching. Speaking to French media in Abu Dhabi, Prost said, “I believe reality is sinking in now that the 2013 season has almost run its course, now there is a wake up call as the task ahead is daunting. This time a year ago it was full steam ahead on the 2013 cars with most giving the 2014 season little real thought.” “It’s not just about the new V6 turbo units, but also the all new energy recovery system. Plus teams have to package the all new inter-cooler, the different exhaust layout plus incorporate significant changes to aerodynamics.” Alain Prost in Abu Dhabi “Add to that the weight limit which in the past team’s had no issue adhering to, but now for 2014 it is a problem that needs solving. Even experienced operations such as the three engine manufacturers namely Renault, Mercedes and Ferrari will encounter problems,” ventured Prost. McLaren sporting director Sam Michael shares Prost’s sentiments regarding the state of readiness, “We will be on the limit to get ready in time for the first test.” Even the World Champions, Red Bull, are not immune to the looming ‘deadline’ as Adrian Newey explained to media, “We had to keep pushing and we put a lot of work into developing this year’s car, which in truth meant some compromise to the development of next year’s car, but we felt [that] we needed to do that.” “It’s a big effort now from everyone to get the car ready for the first test,” added the sport’s most successful designer. (GP247) Subbed by AJN. MIKE GASTON See Sam Michael is having a Groundhog Day! Taskmaster Prediction: The first 6 races are going to be a lottery, with surprises on both ends of the spectrum – similar to the opening of 2012 when midfield teams landed in front. This will prevent any early runaway by any team. There will be signs that one or the other power packages is a little quicker, and which is least reliable, but those differences will fade as the producers fine tune their systems. Mechanically, all of the engine producers are capable of building the hard parts just fine – the trick will be in the system as a whole + software programming to make it work… and system reliability (all parts working in unison). It will also evident which drivers are figuring out how to drive the new systems (hint: simulation junkies will have the advantage). As the season plays out, the usual suspects will prevail. In other words, same ole stuff… Hawk Williams sporting director Sam Michael. JodyRenza I don’t think their budgets are ready even if the teams & fans are ready! ZombieJebus I for one am not ready for 2014. I think the new formula is seriously lame. And I love turbos. The large amount of ERS useage, the super exotic materials for the turbos, the low reving engines and artifiicially amplified turbo noise, restricted DRS, more Pirelli… it simply fails to impress… especially under the guise of “green technology”. Red Bull Cheats More Red Bull$#!t. They knew 3 races ago that they were going to win the WDC and switched off 2013. Mercedes and Ferrari have to fight for 2nd place so they have to focus on 2013. I’m so tired of Red Bull and their blatant lies. Ukwhite Bulls will dominate again, but the unknown is the engines. The most hit will take the old drivers, Ferrari the most. Shanon Shirname There is a very fundamental error in this article, which is quite a shame. Sam Michael has been mentioned as ‘Williams Sporting Director’. He is MCLAREN SPORTING DIRECTOR. Please get your facts right. David Er..on my screen it definitely states “McLaren sporting director Sam Michael..” Shanon Shirname please look again!