Posts Tagged ‘barrichello’

What Jenson needs to win

October 5th, 2009 No comments

Jenson Button, Singapore, 2009Brawn GP will almost certainly wrap up the Constructors’ Championship at the Brazilian Grand Prix in two weeks’ time but the Drivers’ Championship is still a three horse race.

Jenson Button has a 14 point lead over team mate Rubens Barrichello and a 16 point lead over Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel.

There are 20 points available over the next two races, so it is still possible for Vettel to be crowned Champion but what will it take for Jenson to seal the Championship at Interlagos?

There are a few ways Button can clinch it:

  1. He finishes third or better
  2. He scores four points more than Barrichello
  3. Vettel finishes lower than second and Barrichello finishes lower than fourth

As usual, Button remains positive:

We go to two circuits now which should suit our car so I’m excited about the end of the season and already looking forward to the next race in Brazil.

Of course if a track suits Jenson’s car it also suits Barrichello’s and the Brazilian will be on home territory fighting for probably his last shot at the Championship:

I’ve got to go there and win the race, that’s the aim. The rest, I don’t care about, and if I deserve to win the championship, I will.

It might be a long shot for him but Sebastian Vettel is not going to give up:

As I’ve said many times already, I will fight until the end, until the last breath.

The good news for fans is that all three drivers will really be fighting for the win in Brazil.  Barrichello and Vettel need it to keep their chances alive and Button can’t afford to lose many more points.

Image: Brawn GP

Categories: 2009 Season Tags: , ,

Rubens wins in Valencia

August 23rd, 2009 No comments

Rubens Barrichello, Europe, 2009Rubens Barrichello claimed his first victory since China 2004 at the European Grand Prix in Valencia on Sunday.

He may have started from the second row of the grid but, fuel-adjusted, he was quickest in qualifying and he kept that pace throughout the race to leap-frog both McLarens.

Barrichello, who was wearing a special helmet with a message to Felipe Massa, dedicated the victory to his fellow countryman who is recovering in Brazil after his accident at the Hungarian Grand Prix:

I want to thank everyone who has supported me and this victory is dedicated to the whole of Brazil but particularly to my great friend Felipe Massa. I hope he is back racing against me soon.

Lewis Hamilton made a good start from pole position and was leading after the first round of pit stops but a late decision (too late as Lewis was already committed to the pit entrance) to keep him out for another lap meant that the pit crew weren’t ready for his final set of tyres. The delay cost Hamilton a couple of seconds although Martin Whitmarsh would later say that McLaren didn’t have the pace to beat Barrichello anyway:

To have a car arrive and not have the tyres there is an operational error. But had the tyres been ready it wouldn’t have made a difference. It only cost us a couple of seconds.

I thought it was interesting to compare Hamilton’s reaction to his team’s error to Barrichello’s outburst at the German Grand Prix.  While Rubens immediately claimed the team had lost the race for him, Lewis called his pit crew “the best” and said they deserved a pat on the back.

The win moves Barrichello into second place in the Drivers’ Championship, 18 points behind his team mate Jenson Button, while Mark Webber drops back to third.

2009 European Grand Prix Race Results

Pos Driver Team Grid Time Points
1 Rubens Barrichello Brawn-Mercedes 3 35:51.289 10
2 Lewis Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes 1 35:53.647 8
3 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 6 36:07.283 6
4 Heikki Kovalainen McLaren-Mercedes 2 36:11.321 5
5 Nico Rosberg Williams-Toyota 7 36:12.159 4
6 Fernando Alonso Renault 8 36:19.033 3
7 Jenson Button Brawn-Mercedes 5 36:26.202 2
8 Robert Kubica BMW Sauber 10 36:27.956 1
9 Mark Webber Red Bull-Renault 9 36:36.199 0
10 Adrian Sutil Force India-Mercedes 12 36:39.224 0
11 Nick Heidfeld BMW Sauber 11 36:40.111 0
12 Giancarlo Fisichella Force India-Mercedes 16 36:54.903 0
13 Jarno Trulli Toyota 18 36:55.816 0
14 Timo Glock Toyota 13 37:17.808 0
15 Romain Grosjean Renault 14 37:23.033 0
16 Jaime Alguersuari Toro Rosso-Ferrari 19 lapped 0
17 Luca Badoer Ferrari 20 lapped 0
18 Kazuki Nakajima Williams-Toyota 17 lapped 0
RET Sebastien Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari 15 retired, 41 laps 0
RET Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 4 retired, 23 laps 0

Image: Brawn GP

Categories: 2009 Season Tags: , ,

Formula One drivers on Twitter

July 18th, 2009 No comments

According to a Nielsen survey, from February 2008 to February 2009 Twitter grew 1,382 percent and now has close to 2 million users.

And it’s not just your mates tweeting about what they had for breakfast, either.  Everyone from Barack Obama to Paris Hilton is using Twitter and a few Formula One drivers are, too.

There are official team Twitter pages like McLaren and Brawn GP, but some of the drivers also have their own Twitter accounts which can be a bit more personal.

Today there was this little exchange between Jenson Button, Rubens Barrichello and Nelson Piquet Jr:















You can follow F1 Buzz on Twitter, too.  If you know any other drivers that are using Twitter I would love to hear about it in the comments.

Categories: Drivers Tags: , , ,

Barrichello goes fastest in Barcelona

March 12th, 2009 No comments

Rubens Barrichello testing at BarcelonaWow.

Only days after the new Brawn GP car’s first shakedown at Silverstone, Rubens Barrichello set the fastest time on the final day of testing in Barcelona on Thursday.

His lap time of 1:18.926 was nearly a second faster than Nico Rosberg’s Williams FW31 and Lewis Hamilton was almost two seconds slower in his MP4-24 despite being powered by the same Mercedes-Benz engine.  The other Mercedes powered car, Fisichella’s Force India VJM02, finished in tenth place.

Not only was the BGP 001 fast it was reliable too, completing 110 laps.

I said last week that I thought Brawn GP could do alright this year but I didn’t really expect it to look so strong so soon.

Team owner Ross Brawn said:

The team made a very late start to our pre-season testing programme, with only seven days in which to run the car before the first race in Melbourne; therefore our focus has been on reliability and achieving as much mileage as possible. Both of these aims have been successfully achieved this week.

There has been loads of speculation about what the times we’ve seen in winter testing mean.  Does the fact that the Brawn went quickest mean it is really the fastest car or are McLaren sandbagging?  We won’t really know until the lights go out in Melbourne but even if Rubens set that time running on fumes, comments from the other drivers suggest they are impressed by the car’s speed.  Ferrari’s Felipe Massa said:

No one can do the same times [as Brawn GP]. Everyone was using less fuel, not only them.  But their times were much faster than those that anyone else could do.

McLaren’s performance is also very puzzling.  There have been comments from Ron Dennis and Norbert Haug suggesting that they don’t have the speed they want yet but I get the feeling they aren’t trying for raw pace.  With the ban on testing this year I think McLaren are being very methodical in correlating what they see on the track with what their computer simulations tell them.  If they can accurately simulate the real world using CFD and racks of computers then they will have an easier time developing their car ‘virtually’, as it were, throughout the year.

They may also be playing their cards close to their chest, not wanting to give any advantage away that could be copied by other teams.  As Ron Dennis said:

We had a strategy for this year to leave it to the last possible moment to produce our aerodynamic package for the Australian Grand Prix.  That in itself gave us some production challenges, and we have really only started to run the car in the last day with the Australian aero package. It doesn’t mean you are lost or that you don’t know what you are doing.

So that was why they were running the 2008-spec rear wing?

It’s all very exciting and who will be on the podium at the Australian Grand Prix at the end of the month is anyone’s guess but after Ross Brawn previously downplayed his team’s chances and suggesting that 2009 will be another transitional year it looks like Brawn GP could be serious championship contenders.

Thursday was the final day of testing for Ferrari, BMW, Toyota, Force India and the two Red Bull teams before the season opener in Melbourne but Brawn GP and McLaren will grab a few final days in Jerez next week.

David Coulthard said that “Force India could be the shock of the season”,  but if Brawn GP carry their testing pace through to Australia it could be the Mercedes-Benz powered BGP 001 that is the real shock.

Categories: Opinion Tags: , , ,

Rubens is back

March 3rd, 2009 No comments

Rubens Barrichello, 2008 Chinese GPIt looks like Rubens Barichello, the most experienced driver in Formula One, will be back with the soon to be renamed Honda F1 team in 2009.

There had been speculation that Bruno Senna, nephew of the great Ayrton Senna, would replace Barrichello this year.  Now it seems that with only a few weeks to go until the first Grand Prix in Melbourne, and the team yet to turn a wheel on the new car in testing, Ross Brawn is keen to take advantage of Barrichello’s vast F1 experience.

Last year’s Turkish Grand Prix saw Barrichello make his 257th Grand Prix start beating the previous record number of starts held by Riccardo Patrese and 2009 will be the Brazillian’s 16th year in Formula One.

As with every post about Honda recently, I have to add the disclaimer that nothing has been officially announced, but I’m glad it looks like Rubens will be on the grid this year.  While it would be nice to see the Senna name in Formula One again, it makes sense to have an experienced pair of hands for what will be a difficult year for the team.  Rubens clearly thinks he still has what it takes to race in Formula One, saying at the end of last year:

I have unfinished business in F1.  I am sure I can finish higher up, if not winning the championship. I really believe that is what I deserve.

While winning the Championship is unlikely for Rubens this year, it would be a shame if he didn’t return to Formula One for at least another year.  As the most experienced F1 driver ever he deserves a proper send off when he finally does retire.

Categories: Drivers Tags: , ,