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Your questions answered - week 2

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Murray Walker | 14:30 UK time, Tuesday, 14 April 2009

Is Brawn's diffuser 'advantage' here to stay?; Do Ferrari still miss Schumacher, Brawn and Todt?; Will Honda regret pulling out of F1?; Does the qualifying format need be different?; Should race times be decided on the best racing conditions or optimising European television audiences?; Does Jenson Button need a shave?; Will Murray grow a beard himself? Answers here...

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  • Comment number 1.

    has F1 run its course ?
    to a bystander like myself it seems so when the racing has become second to back room managerial decisions, when the bigger teams cry foul just becouse they cant get their acts together.
    the excitement of the race day drama seems over ruled by complaints and childish behaviour.
    i for one am an avid viewer and have been for years and i am pleased to see F1 back on the BBC, but with all the complaints from the bigger teams im tempted to change what i watch an example would be indy racing.

  • Comment number 2.

    Hi Murray

    I met you at Autosport this year and you were fabulous - I don't think you took a single breath between sentences for nigh-on 8 hours!!

    My question to you is, you have been quite critical of Fernando Alonso in recent times, with all of the furore at McLaren again, do you think that maybe he wasn't as paranoid as we all believed him to be in 2007? This is not a question of the integrity of a team by the way, merely a question of your personal thoughts.........there's no smoke without fire!!!

  • Comment number 3.

    A rule needs to be instigated that the race stewards decision for each race is final. No change of places or winners, days or even weeks after the event. How long does the car checks take in parc ferme after the race. Make the results stand after 1 hour scrutiny and that's it. Complaints regarding illegal cars etc should be made before the race and wherever possible penalties for speeding in pit lane, jump starts, overtaking under caution, etc, should be made during the race. people need to know that they have watched the whole race and not just the bit with cars involved.

  • Comment number 4.

    One more......cheeky I know!

    You famously missed Jenson's first win in Hungary (and couldn't actually believe you'd missed it if I recall!!), where were you when he magnificently won in Australia and Malaysia? It's great to see the Union Jack being raised and hearing the national anthem for the best British driver isn't it.......... ;)

  • Comment number 5.

    Hi Murray,

    My question for next week is: Are Tilke tracks dull and do we need to find a new track designer?

    Many thanks indeed,

    Gianni Fasulo

  • Comment number 6.

    Hi everyone. Firstly apologies for the delay in posting the answers this week. There was a minor problem which has now been rectified and hopefully you won't need to wait so long next time. Anyway, China is close so get your questions ready for Murray to read on Sunday and Monday. We will then film a selection of them and hopefully get them on site asap. Enjoy China (without the boring politics) and can I direct you to the start of the F1 weekend with red button and web coverage of practice followed by 'Inside F1' on the News Channel on Friday...enjoy


  • Comment number 7.

    Hello Murray: There's a very interesting piece on the Autosport website this week suggesting that there should be driver rotation during the season rather than the current system where drivers are 'owned' by teams. This would allegedly prove which driver is the best as each driver would have to drive each of the teams' cars during the year. It's an idea that has some merit in my opinion and would enable the 'average punter' to be able to compare drivers and cars rather more easily than at present. Although I haven't been to as many grands prix as your good self (my first was Brands Hatch in 1964) I think that I'd miss some of the excitement of the best driver being associated with the best car - but maybe the FIA should stop fiddling around with the regulations and do something major to excite the man on the top of the Clapham omnibus rather than the died-in--the-wool fanatics like us! It would be good to know who is REALLY the best in each generation, wouldn't it?
    Bestest - Geoff Thomas

  • Comment number 8.

    Hi there Murray. Here is my question for this week.

    Can Fernando Alonso win the title with Renault again or will he ultimately have to move on to one of the so called 'bigger teams?

    Personally I think he is a class act. I am not yet sure whether he is in the Senna or Schumacher class but he is a great World Champion past and given the right car he can and surely will win again. Think back to the back end of last year when he one two races in a row. Most others would not have been able to do that in the renault.

  • Comment number 9.

    Hi Murray,

    Out of all the tracks (off the calendar) which is the most sorely missed and what track are you looking forward to most?

    p.s. Please come back for Silverstone!

  • Comment number 10.

    Hi Murray,
    Do you think the diffusers are illegal, i just think that the other teams are jealous because they have'nt got it.
    Also, do you think Toyota and Red Bull will win a race this season?

  • Comment number 11.

    Nice vid, always great to hear your opinions.

  • Comment number 12.

    Hi murray!
    great video again love seeing your thought. cant wait for next week!
    Do you think Legaults ideas over FOTA making their own competition and abandoning FIA would work?

  • Comment number 13.

    Well if you ask me F1 went downhill when you stopped commentating. Nice job here Murray.

    My question is.

    Now Jenson is winning and is a proven race winner, do you think he would be a worthy world champion?

    Ive always been a massive fan of Jenson and knew this day would come but im still hearing off people that he isnt world class. i blelieve he always was, just unlucky with placements and team developments.

  • Comment number 14.


    I've been priviledged to be at the races where Damon Hill, Nigel Mansell and Lewis Hamilton were crowned F1 World Champions. Do you think I should plan a trip for later this season and if so, where do you think I should book my tickets for.


  • Comment number 15.

    I'm confused. Once the race was stopped, Martin mentioned that the drivers had to stay on the track. However, I saw Webber in the pits, I'm sure using the pitwall to speak to the stewards, then I saw the Ferrari of kimi's being taken into the pits and Kimi changed and relaxing in their garage. then I see Alonso sitting under the cover of his pitwall. Are past champions exempt from this ruling?

  • Comment number 16.

    Dear Murray,

    Thank you for answering my last question about Jenson’s appearance. I asked the question as a light hearted joke and did so simply because I thought I had more chance of getting an answer from a silly question, then a serious one. I think Jenson’s a great character and looks just fine as he is, besides my beards longer! So to make up for my last question here’s a sensible one:

    Now that the grooves have been removed for the 2009 slick tyres. Do you believe the transition from a dry track to a wet track while on 2009 slicks can be trickier to handle? As the grooves on the 2008 slick tyres potentially worked, to an extent as a wet weather tyres?

    Thank you


  • Comment number 17.

    Dear Murray,

    Thank you for answering my last question about Jenson’s appearance. I asked the question as a light hearted joke and did so simply because I thought I had more chance of getting an answer from a silly question, then a serious one. I think Jenson’s a great character and looks just fine as he is, besides my beards longer! So to make up for my last question here’s a sensible one:

    Now that the grooves have been removed for the 2009 slick tyres. Do you believe the transition from a dry track to a wet track while on 2009 slicks can be trickier to handle? As the grooves on the 2008 slick tyres potentially worked, to an extent as wet weather tyres?

    Thank you


  • Comment number 18.

    i have followed f1 for 22 years and this season, with the evening out of the cars means even qualifying is extremely exciting. however if brawn/williams etc get thrown out tomorrow i will never atch f1 again. results shold be won on the track not in the courts. I nearly stopped watching after last season when hamilton almost lost the championship and not because anything he done but because if he had lost it would have been courtesy of the points he was deducted by the here's hoping the same thing doesnt happen to button or thats one less fan...

  • Comment number 19.

    Hi Murray,

    What do you think of Ferrari describing Ross Brawn as "a person of supreme arrogance" during the diffuser hearing?

    Personally, the words "pot", "kettle" and "black" come to mind!

  • Comment number 20.

    I agree with delminster. How could the FIA allow an illegal car (if it is) to start the Grand Prix season.

    All this mucking about in hearings is making F1 a joke.

    Best Wishes


  • Comment number 21.

    Hi Murray,
    In semi-response to Geoffchats' comment of seeing who is the real best drivers of the eras, I feel that drivers swapping cars wouldn't ever be feasible as it is the teams that pay the drivers via sponsorship deals (although I can't deny that it would be interesting to watch!). I believe that the Race Of Champions is probably the nearest you will get to this concept - sadly.
    Murray, have you seen ROC and do you feel it has a good formula?
    For anyone who hasn't seen / heard of it, it normally takes place in December every year and consists of super-special stage style format with various cars and with drivers from any type of motorsport from around the globe. The main point is to raise money for charity, but usually shows friendly but adrenalin filled battles.
    Thanks Murray,
    Virtual Stig

  • Comment number 22.

    Realistically, can Rubens challenge for the title now that Jenson has leapt into the championship lead?

  • Comment number 23.


    Firstly glad to have you back commenting on F1 you are my favorite commentator.

    secondly which form of f1 racing do you prefer these heavily structured ruled racing or the jump in the car and go racing days.


  • Comment number 24.

    It’s always a pleasure to hear your voice Murray, in the commentary box or out. I’m regularly looking forward to seeing the videos you create.

    What would your preference been on the current points system, Would you like Bernie’s new Medal system or would you prefer a slightly different system or maybe your own personalized one that you may have thought of in your years in the commentary box?

    Once again, Nice hearing from you!


  • Comment number 25.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 26.

    Can I have your jumper?

  • Comment number 27.

    I migth have missed something, but why is the Canadian GP not in the calendar for this year?! Is it because Lewis won there in his rookie season? Or have Ecclestone and the FIA got a more reasonable excuse?
    And the US GP too, when did that disappear?

  • Comment number 28.

    I think probably its because hamilton dominated canada both years but ecclestone would probably say because of the poor track condition last year

  • Comment number 29.

    Hi Murray,

    now that the diffuser row is settled and everyone can get back to what really matters (the racing!), do you think it would be a good idea for Brawn GP to be sponsored by Polo mints - as Brawn are "the car with the hole".


    Grant :-)

    PS - Are you going to be guest commentating at Silverstone? Please?

  • Comment number 30.

    Hi Murray

    During the races marbles are produced on the track when bits of rubber break off from the tyres and this creates a single track and stops overtaking. Can we not have tyres that don't shred like this? This would reduce the grip in the corners and also allow for a "wider" circuit and should promote overtaking.


  • Comment number 31.

    Hi Murray,

    Could you clear up what the funny noise is from the onboard camera we hear when many of the cars are going down a straight. The sound is like a downshift even when they are travelling at high speed and not changing gear or slowing down. I have no idea what it is. Is this KERS or soemthing else? I am very curious to know.

    Many thanks for answering our questions and please commentate at the British Grand Prix!

    all the best


  • Comment number 32.


    Given your history in advertising (I read your autobiography), what would you do with Brawn GP's extremely bland car?


  • Comment number 33.

    very good news for the Brawn team! lets hope jensen can go all the way a become the champion. wasn't too sure about the rule changes at first but if the other fifteen races have as much drama as the first two it will be a excellant season! nice to see and hear you again murray you've been missed!

  • Comment number 34.


    What are your thoughts on the Brittish GP being moved to Donington? Do you think this is a good move or do you think it should stay at Silverstone?

    Thanks gromcom

  • Comment number 35.

    What did the protesting teams have to lose? Nothing.

    It should be the case that, in order to proceed with a protest, a team should have to 'wager' 10 or even 20 points.

    If they win the protest, they keep the points (and one or more of their rivals will have lost, to the protester's gain); if they lose the protest, then they pay the forfeit.

    It would surely have stopped the unedifying spectacle of this DOOMED protest by crybaby teams who were essentially bemoaning the fact that "we didn't think of that" and "our employees aren't as clever as those at Brawn, Toyota and Williams."

  • Comment number 36.

    Hi Murray

    Thank you for answering my question last week, it was greatly appreciated :) as a 17 year old that has followed Formula One for as long as I can remember, I have always wanted to be involved in it as a career. As a youngster, of course it was being a driver. Nowadays however I would love to get involved in the media aspect, and in particular as a commentator or a researcher, as I have a very good knowledge of the sports history. What I'd like to know is what steps could I take to make any of these dreams a reality?


  • Comment number 37.

    Why did it take so long for Mclaren to protest over the diffuser row.

  • Comment number 38.

    hi murray,what has happened to mike gascoyne?do you think ross braun should have him in the team?

  • Comment number 39.

    Couldn't millions of pounds be saved by scrapping qualifying and drawing grid positions "out of a hat"?

  • Comment number 40.

    hi murray.

    having just read that ron dennis has cut all ties with formula you think this is an attempt to distance himself from the team before the upcoming fia hearing on april 29th?
    also,how harshly do you think mclaren will be punished by the fia after the huge $100,000,000 fine imposed on the team in 2007?

    i would also like to add my voice to the many others who wish to hear you back in the commentary box for the last silverstone gp.

  • Comment number 41.

    Do Brawn have a long term future at the top of Formula 1?

  • Comment number 42.

    Am I going crazy or do the F1 cars no longer display race numbers ?
    If so when did it change and why

  • Comment number 43.

    Why are there no female Formula One drivers?

  • Comment number 44.

    Why do F1 cars still use mirrors when road cars are using rear view cameras, the drag caused by the existing mirrors must be considerable? It cannot be a reliability issue as there are broadcast cameras on every car. They could also give a wider view, with less blind spots for the drivers.

  • Comment number 45.

    Do you think that the new 'ugly' areodynamics have increased the amoount of over taking ?

  • Comment number 46.

    Hi Murray. I have just joined the forum so another Welcome Back message from me.

    My question, which has been raised on a number of occasions over the last few years is: When will F1 implement a team of stewards that are recognised as expert in their field with a consistant level of knowledge, training and application of the rules?

    Other sports expect their referees and other officials to have gained professional qualifications in their sport and are affiliated to the sport in which they officiate. What will it take to do this for F1? It may be the most glamourous sport and possible the most expensive too but surely the FIA or F1 could resolve this? A team of stewards with a core number of officials who travel to each of the races would certainly go a long way to improving on or even removing the post-race debacles we have witnessed. Technology to enable them to keep up with us poor viewers and the teams may help too - assuming they do't have it and if they do, why not use it? Mistakes happen to the best of us, as I am sure you will agree, but at least we usually do something to rectify them.

    That's the end of my first rant. See you at Goodwood!!

  • Comment number 47.

    Hi Murray: It's great to see you back!

    In reaction to Fernando Alonso's rather damning comments about the new tyre regulations, should F1 consider returning to having A, B, C and D compound tyres available to teams, as in the 80s and early 90s?

    Best wishes

  • Comment number 48.

    Jenson Button drove for BAR did no good BAR taken over by Honda still no good Honda pulled of f1 Brawn rose from the ashes going well WHY?

  • Comment number 49.

    A few hours to round 3, so after the race get your questions in for Murray. We will be filming again on Monday, so it's best if you can post up to about 6pm Sunday before we have a cut off until the next Grand Prix. They will be on site by the middle of next week. Thanks. Roy

  • Comment number 50.

    Ok, a quick question for Murray. Well, sort-of quick. If money were not an issue and you could restore or upgrade any circuit in the world (whether it was ever used for F1 or not) up to F1 standards, what circuit would you add to the calendar?

  • Comment number 51.

    Hi Murray, thank you so much for the enthralling posts!

    Why is it that I can think of better race strategies than Ferrari can for its own drivers?


  • Comment number 52.

    Hello there!
    Do you think that Robert Kubica just wanted to have a closer look at Toyota's triple decker diffuser, but just went to close? Maybe it was a team order to make few close up pictures. ;)
    Thanks :)

  • Comment number 53.

    Murray, Firstly, glad to be writing to you, do you think it is a bit soon to be labelling lewis, the next big thing considering he is driving a Mclaren?? For me the better drivers are those that can produce a good performance in a mediocre car and not those who can win in a near perfect car. Schumacher proved he can win a race or many in an underperforming car as did senna, yet Lewis is yet to do so. What are your thoughts?

  • Comment number 54.

    Murray, extremely pleased to be writing to such a legend! To know that your on the BBC F1 team is superb! F1 without you is like the premier league without Manchester United!

    anyway, my question is to you, do you think Bernie is a liablity to the sport nowadays? He's done good in the past, but nowadays he seems to be very controversial and alot of people do not like him. Whats your opinion?




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