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Ferrari turn focus to 2012

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Sarah Holt | 13:58 UK time, Wednesday, 14 September 2011

As the curtain fell on the European season in the late summer sunshine of Monza, Ferrari also effectively drew a line under their 2011 campaign.

Team boss Stefano Domenicali explained, with an air of resignation, that another technical set-back had derailed Ferrari and Fernando Alonso's fight back.
"We have stopped the development [of the car]," Domenicali had said. "It is very, very, very, very, very difficult now."

With 13 races run - and just six to go - Alonso's victory in Great Britain in July remains Ferrari's only win of the season.

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Highlights of the Italian GP (UK users only)

At the time Ferrari had celebrated Silverstone as a significant turning point, laughing off suggestions the win might be a one-off because it happened to coincide with a one-race ban on so-called off-throttle blowing of the diffuser and also relied partly on an error at Vettel's second pit stop.

Ferrari were confident they were now able to interpret data from their wind tunnel correctly - something that had hit them in the early part of the campaign - and that a new package of upgrades was giving them strength in their previous area of weakness - high-speed, high-downforce circuits.

At the next race in Germany, Alonso kept up the charge, narrowly losing out to Lewis Hamilton in a three-way fight to the flag, before the wrong tyre strategy and a late spin relegated him to third in Hungary.

But following the summer break, Ferrari fell off the pace again when they were forced to abandon failed upgrades planned for Belgium and Italy.

"We were expecting a bigger step in our development in Spa," Domenicali revealed. "Unfortunately we discovered it was the opposite so we took a step back, and that was also a step back for Monza."

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Ferrari say this time muddled wind tunnel data was not to blame, simply that the upgrades - which focused on a new exhaust system - did not deliver what was expected of them.

Domenicali is optimistic the gap between Ferrari and rivals Red Bull and McLaren will be smaller on Singapore's street circuit, a race Alonso won last year - but closing the gap completely is now a task for 2012.

Pat Fry, who replaced technical director Aldo Costa when the Italian stood down in May, says he is already tackling the development of next season's Ferrari at the team's Maranello headquarters.

Top of the Englishman's to-do list is to improve the car's "absolute downforce" levels and to help with that he says the team will still drip through small developments to the 2011 car for analysis.

Ferrari's failure to effectively interpret new regulations in time for the start of the season has seen them come unstuck in 2009 and 2011.

But with technical rule changes only focussing on the design of the car's exhaust in 2012, Fry is cautiously optimistic that Ferrari can hit the ground running.

"The stability should help," he said. "But it does not mean that automatically you will be able to catch up your opponents.

"We know we have a gap to recover in terms of performance and we need an extra effort to get rid of it: this is one of the main targets of the winter time."

Some F1 experts have ear-marked the former McLaren engineer as the brains behind McLaren's "F-duct" which quickly became 2010's must-have aerodynamic device.

Whether Fry was the anonymous figure behind the creation or not, innovation and fresh-thinking at Maranello will be key when it comes to matching the grey matter of Red Bull's chief technical officer Adrian Newey.

"Adrian's Red Bulls have been the quickest cars in the last two or three years," said Fry, who worked alongside Newey at McLaren in the Nineties.

"[But] to be honest I do not think this is a man-against-man sport, not at all. It is a very complex sport in which a very talented engineer cannot make everything along as he needs the support of many people to succeed.

"At the moment, Red Bull are the reference; our aim is to win, whoever will be our opponents."

President Luca di Montezemolo underlined Ferrari's task when he stalked around the team garage during the Italian Grand Prix weekend and casually strolled across the open pit lane to shake his fist at the tifosi in a gesture of intent.

"I am not happy," said Di Montezemolo, who became founder Enzo Ferrari's right-hand man when he joined the team nearly 40 years ago. "Next year, I expect a competitive car with a clear interpretation of the rules. I hope to win the championship again."

For Fry and Ferrari - and at rivals McLaren where the team are also running over the first interpretation of their 2012 car - the hard work has already begun.


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  • Comment number 1.

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

  • Comment number 2.

    BBC censorship in action again. Ferrari just as well pack up for good, nobody will be watching F1 in 2012.

  • Comment number 3.

    It's disappointing that Ferrari are so far from the Red Bull and even McLarens pace, especially on the harder tyres out of the pits. I'd love it next year if Ferrari can improve as well as McLaren so there is closer wheel to wheel racing with Vettel's Red Bull throughout the races.

    Then again I'd love it if I could even watch all of F1 next year with the same fantastic coverage by all the BBC F1 production crew. As it is I get half, with cutbacks, and half in German on RTL. F1 in HD from the Murdochs is 5 times the current cost so it's not going to happen Sky. Thanks for that Bernie, or should I say Danke Herr Bernard, and thanks BBC managers, half a job is not a good deal. Wonder what the rest of the 6 million BBC viewers will do, especially the casual F1 fans?

  • Comment number 4.

    That Ferrari are walking away from development of the 2011 car says at the very least that they aren't overly keen to use the winter to just iterate and optimise the design into 2012.

    The question ultimately is whether Pat Fry can reverse the slide and raise Ferrari beyond the clutches of an ambitious Mercedes team helmed by ex-Ferrari technical director Ross Brawn.

    The answer to that is going to dictate Felipe Massa's career trajectory in 12 months time - get a car which can genuinely tussle the Brazilian might wake up and start getting results on the board again, without it Ferrari will need to look to someone cheaper who can wring more out of the equipment.

  • Comment number 5.

    I thought HCumber's comment was very relevant - the article is about F1 in 2012, as was his/her response....

    Anyway - Ferrari continue to fall short of their uber high standards, I wonder how far off the pace they'd be if Alonso wasnt there. He claimed to bring 0.6s pace to McLaren ... can the same be said for his presence at Ferrari?

  • Comment number 6.

    @3 Well said Stevie, I'm very much looking forward to the BBC going up in front of the commons select committee, we will finally get some answers and the BBC will be held to account for their disgraceful actions.

  • Comment number 7.

    It's been so long I'm re-releasing the ode to F1. Topical - Ferrari and Holt in it.
    Cue the piano...

    "Imagine there's no F.One
    It's easy if you try
    No BeeBeeCee below us
    Above us only Sky
    Imagine all the people
    Living for RaceSunday...

    Imagine there's no Murdoch
    It isn't hard to do
    Nothing to hate or die for
    And no Bernie Ecclestone too
    Imagine all the people
    Watching grand prix in peace...

    You may say that I'm a dreamer
    But I'm not the only one
    I hope someday you'll join us
    And the world will all be able to watch F.One

    Imagine no Brundle, DC; Jake, Eddie; Lee, Ted; Ant, Crofty Bensy, Holty or Murray
    I wonder if you can
    No need for greed or hunger
    We have a brotherhood of man
    Imagine all the people
    Sharing all the World...(Championship)

    You may say that I'm a dreamer
    But I'm not the only one
    I hope someone can undo this mess
    And the world will all watch Ferrari in F.One "

  • Comment number 8.

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

  • Comment number 9.

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

  • Comment number 10.

    I hope Ferrari come back strong next year, the wind tunnel error and model basicly cost them the whole season. not looking forward to the Saturday omnibus of eastenders next year. although sky have been a bit quiet as to how F1 on SKY will look (unless some one can provode a link to what they will do) will be an utter shame to loose the current F1 team.

  • Comment number 11.

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

  • Comment number 12.

    @10, here's a Sky preview (it's after the ADVERT):,,12870_7121928,00.html

    Be carful you aren't seduced by the charisma of Tony Jardine.

  • Comment number 13.

    @11 it's a misconception that the deal is done. It has not been finalised, for example we may or may not have full deffered races 3 hours after Sky on the red button, but the details have not been finalised on this.

  • Comment number 14.

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

  • Comment number 15.

    I refuse to be censored for expressing my views

  • Comment number 16.

    Jake is doing a blog today (should be up soon) wonder if he will mention the crowd chanting

    No To Sky

  • Comment number 17.

    @4 I'd like to see di Resta in the second Ferrari, Massa would probably get a new lease of life if he joined Force India as a swap!
    @6 Thanks HCumber, disappointed to see so many of your comments are removed, and that goes for comments from other quality posters too. I'm doubting but also hopefull the commons select committe can get questions answered.

    @9 Haha. I see Sam Michael has left Williams, he walked as a vote of no confidence in Adam Parr's recent lecture to F1 fans about their need to shut up, pay up and showing half of the races only on payTV is good for F1. Good man Sam.

    It's very poor that for half the grand prix, the closest to watching Ferrari in 2012 many people will get is if Roary The Racing Car is on at the same time.

  • Comment number 18.

    No to Sky!

  • Comment number 19.

    I think Ferrari will get better, but I expect the other teams around them to vastly improve too.

    I don't know whether to focus on the left-hand side or the right-hand side of the car, as I am already resigned to only being able to see half of it.

    No to Sky.

  • Comment number 20.

    how is my comment awaiting moderation because i put n0 to sky

    can someone please explain how this breaks the rules

  • Comment number 21.

    We're not getting F1 for free, we're getting it as part of a contract the BBC have reneged on, funded by the license fee.

    No to Sky.

  • Comment number 22.

    depends if Ferrari decide to go the cost cutting BBC way as they may only build the best bits of the car and leave the rest out

  • Comment number 23.

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

  • Comment number 24.

    F1 is dying for 2 main reasons for me:
    1) The best driver no longer wins races and the championship, it's the car. If Button, Alonso, Hamilton or even Schuey drove a Redbull they would be champions
    2) Viewing live races will no longer be free and we will be subject to the razmataz of sky F1 races.

    If the BBC have no money to afford the luxuries of F1 then fine, give up the rights, but I think there needs to be a review of where our licence fee goes and stop paying actors and presenters over inflated wages.

  • Comment number 25.

    @12 and @10

    Jardine and Sky are improving, he didn't say Fernandes was in the Ferrari as he did for the Hungarian Preview. Someone must have told him Fernandes runs Team Lotus. No hang on, at 1:10 into the preview you can bet on ALONSON at 6/1 for third in the championship. Sounds like poor odds with Alonson never having driven an F1 car before.

    Jardine thinks Vettel might just 'scrape home to the title.' Expensive, dumbed down pro Button, pro Hamilton force fed F1 - here it comes.

    What would SkyBets odds be on getting half of BBC's current audience watching F1?

    3 million F1 viewers paying for SkySports -odds at 1,000,000 to 1.
    Worth a flutter, no chance.

  • Comment number 26.

    @23 - I've been to silverstone twice this year and Brands 3 times (F1 is not the be all and end all of motor racing/riding). I was also lucky enough to be invited to the first FOTA Fans Forum in the UK where this was discussed at length with some venom by many fans but in the end when James Allen asked how many would find a way of watching if it was on Sky, nearly every single hand went up and the 200 ish people there were hardcore, I only applied because it was at McLaren and I wanted to get in a have a look around!

  • Comment number 27.


    I have seen every race this year including the early bird GP's LIVE and have done for the past 10+ years, I pay my license fee (yes i pay my own)

    I don't know if you have heard of a thing called the recession, I wish i could pay £40+ for sky as i do watch a load of sports but when you have a mortgage to pay, utility bills and food shopping have gone up (FACT), then a car to run as well it is just not possible

    oh and there WAS an agreement in place to show the races live on free to view television which a contract has now broken

  • Comment number 28.

    Is the glass half full or half doesn't matter, who wants half a glass?

  • Comment number 29.

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

  • Comment number 30.

    I mean the last thing anyone wants is a half baked idea.

  • Comment number 31.

    i think you will find that only BBC has F1 at the moment with it going to Sky for every race next year (which is the main point) so what are these other television sites what you can watch F1 on?

  • Comment number 32.

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

  • Comment number 33.


    Well, I would like a free season-ticket to my favourite football club, but that does not exist either. But, you will not see me going onto that club's website and constantly whining about it (FACT).

    To stretch this analogy as far as I dare, if my beloved football club offered me free entry to half the matches, I would be absolutely delighted!

  • Comment number 34.

    I'm glad Ferrari are struggling this year - its good that non-factory teams like McLaren and Redbull can have success and that talent can overcome unlimited budgets. People go on and on about the magic of Ferrari, seeming to forget that Alfa Romeo won the first World Championship and that Lotus were the first team to win 50 Grand Prixs. I accept that there is a glamour to them that is lacking in other teams - but it does irritate me that they appear to receive special treatment.

  • Comment number 35.

    @27 - with regard to 40+ quid for Skysports, suggest you have a look on Virgin and BT Vision, both cheaper than a full on sky setup, BT Vision in particuler you can get it for just over 15 quid a month.

  • Comment number 36.

    I may be a typical fickle F1 fan, but I hated Ferrari when they were dominant, but have a growing soft spot for them now - simply because I cannot stand to see Red Bull dominating. Any kind of strong dominance like this is simply a massive turn-off. I'll pay my sky subscription, no doubt, and walk away utterly bored by yet another Red Bull 1-2, but hey at least I'll get to see some cricket that way.

    Ban radio transmissions, that's what I say. Let the likes of Massa cope without Smedley telling him what gear to be in or when to pit - That'll sort the men from the boys and cause a lot more excitement and overtaking.

  • Comment number 37.

    I think sky offer great sport viewing so don't see what all the fuss is! Aside F1 rarely watch BBC as programs are generally rubbish and have been for years upon years.
    As long as no adverts happen in the race then it will be as good as BBC. Only pity is Jake won't be there as great presenter but biased views of Jordan, bundle and co won't be missed at all!

  • Comment number 38.

    @23 AJP
    It's not just about the cost of F1 HD becoming 5 times more expensive.

    It's not just because it's still 'licence fee FTA' in Germany, Spain, France etc
    It's not just because some people cannot put up a dish on their buildings
    It's not just because of breaking the existing deal and subsidising Sky to block C4
    It's not just for the good of the sport and sponsors long term
    It's not just because of dubious Murdoch phone hacks or Bernie and CVCs greed
    It's not just because similar great sports have failed on PaySky like Boxing
    It's not just because of constant show adverts or betting being forced in yer face

    It's the quality, and it doesn't get better than BBC 2011.

    Imagine going to your favourite cafe for your favourite coffee with freshly ground quality beans and a delicious aroma. Now imagine the cafe looks like the toilet in Trainspotting, coffee made from water with mud, dandruff for sugar and spit for milk.(credit to Baldrick, Blackadder 4)

  • Comment number 39.

    hahahah i think you will find that you cannot go to the grand prix in person for free

    think i will watch the 1st half of Man Utd tonight then go to the pub to watch the 2nd half for some practice for next year :)

  • Comment number 40.

    I'm not keen on the new F1 deal for next year, as I really enjoy the BBC coverage but won't pay for subscription services. But realistically these 6 million UK F1 viewers are a small minority, both in global terms and British population, especially considering the number already likely to be subscribed to Sky. The BBC have had to cut their budget and F1 is overpriced. It's about private companies competing and no race deserves protected status other than possibly the British GP. Stop moaning and enjoy what you've got while it lasts.

  • Comment number 41.

    my word AJP really likes the sound of his own typing!
    It's a forum available for comment and my point was that a independant review should be done on where the fee goes.
    Oh and by the way the NHS is still free even if you do not pay tax or NI, so you should do research before typing.

  • Comment number 42.

    I have long resisted getting Sky, as i don't watch a lot of TV and resent paying for something we've traditionally all been able to access for free. I've resisted it when it's taken Champions League Football, Test Cricket, Lost etc. With a deep sigh however i think i will now have to just bite the bullet and sign up. I'm not prepared to miss F1. I suspect many of you will with sadness do the same. So can we at least please start petitioning them to take on the best bits of the BBC team? I hope Martin Brundle has sent in his CV.

  • Comment number 43.

    @23, I appreciate that you take the time to read my comments. Most of what you reply appears to be aimed personally at me, and is quite frankly, petty.

    What you appear to be suggesting is that we all bend over and accept the Sky deal, despite it being a breach of both the BBC’s F1 contract and the Concorde Agreement (circumvented only by the BBC inviting Sky and thus blocking other FTA channels).

    There is a reason that the BBC are being hauled up in front of a commons select committee. It’s not because people are hijacking blogs or trolling, it’s because the BBC’s misconduct over this matter has been highlighted by the F1 fans, and it has been recognised by MP’s as being worthy of investigation.

    It’s not my god given right to watch F1, but it’s my right to stand up and speak out against the injustice taking place here. Anyone who takes the time to read the details of the deal can see that.

    Failing that, just watch the Sky preview and see what the BAFTA award winning BBC coverage is about to be replaced with.

  • Comment number 44.

    Don't do it profoundsparky!!!

    i won't be. F1 isn't worth paying money to watch anyway.

  • Comment number 45.

    PS - I drive a 1967 Mini Marcos built by my fair hand, and you will have seen it at Silverstone this year (sky blue) where I camped for 4 days.

  • Comment number 46.

    @45 HCumber.

    I did indeed see the 67 Mini Marcos in Sky Blue, and what a treat it was. Well done sir (genuine praise).

  • Comment number 47.

    Howdy. Just a thought: instead of whining about the TV coverage, turn it off and go and do something healthy like go and watch a real live motor race. They're much more interesting than watching them on the box and if you're feeling bold you could always become a marshal and make a useful contribution.

  • Comment number 48.


    I do not whine, I protest and when I am not working weekends, I do enjoy motor racing.

    But seeing as I do work weekends, I am able to watch the F1 on the website and the iplayer. Although next year I won't but am still expected to pay the BBC License tax (i mean fee)

  • Comment number 49.

    Speaking of 2012, who's going to be watching?

    The BBC have to be held accountable for the awful deal they made in cutting one of their most popular programmes - this is exactly what will happen before MPs next week.

    The BBC have still not explained why they blocked Channel 4 from keeping F1 on terrestrial TV and instead signed with a subscription-TV service.

  • Comment number 50.

    @42 - yours is the first comment I've seen claiming they will sign up to Sky. I certaonly won't and neither will the millions of discontented fans in the UK who continue to ask questions of the supposedly accountable BBC.

    If you read magazines such as F1 Racing, you'll know that 100% of those who wrote in about the TV deal were vehemently opposed to it and said they would not sign up with Sky.

    This isn't going to go away so the BBC would be wise to answer questions instead of blaming the government for allegedly cutting the licence fee, when independent audits appear to show they will actually receive more money thanks to other streams of revenue (e.g. BBC World).

  • Comment number 51.

    I do watch motor-sport in my free time, on top of that my dad is the chairman of a motor club in which he competes in events, marshall's and even plans the event (inc the courses), in which I have contributed to as well in different roles

    We are not just moaning we want answers to which BBC are not giving

  • Comment number 52.

    @47 - Couple links for those who may want to volunteer for some marshalling, would highly recommend one of the tester days these guys run, much fun (well more than trolling and flaming anyway)...

  • Comment number 53.

    Every one says the deal is done re F1 coverage next year.Why? The deal up to the end of 2013 was changed so why not the new deal?

  • Comment number 54.

    Well, despite being a 27 year long fan of F1, and only a missing a handful of races in that time, this is the first occasion I have found to want to comment on this site. The comment being in reaction to the Sky preview another user posted. I actually watched the Italian GP preview on the Sky website and I thought I would never say this but that was worse than ITV. What a dull, amateurish conversation, littered with references to Sky betting. If their commentary is anything like that we will be constantly reminded of the odds of race winner, first to pit, first to DNF or first to tear a visor strip from their helmet. I know many other F1 fans, and not one of them will be paying for Sky, but I know of at least 4 that have cancelled their BBC license.

  • Comment number 55.

    I have been a fan of F1 for several years, I am also a sky subscriber! I get up early to watch Australia etc but I nor my husband watch any other sport, therefore I will not be subscribing to sky sports as the extra cost isn't justified!! I am not able to find the extra money for this subscription, I have 3 young children, household bills and things my children want to do!! This does not make me less of a fan and I find your comments, AJP and Kevans78, quite insulting. Sky subscriptions is not 'chicken feed' especially if you are not interested in any other sports.

    I know this isn't the feed to be discussing the loss of F1 on the bbc but I felt I had to put my thoughts across.

    No to sky.......all the way!!!

  • Comment number 56.

    Sadly, this will be my last season of watching formula 1, I do not wish to watch half a season live and half recorded and I have no intention of paying for sky, my television licence already costs enough. so bye bye.

  • Comment number 57.

    Back to Ferrari. I started to get into F1 in the mid-80s so spent a long long time waiting for Ferrari to win the championship. When the Ross-Michael combo finally achieved it I felt a big wave of relief.

    The subsequent four years did turn me off a little - not so much for the dominance per se but the manner in which it was conducted. I suspect this put a lot of others off Ferrari (and possibly Michael) as well.

    Setting aside last year's Hockenheim race (!) I would like to see Ferrari at the top of the pile again and hope that the team do show the necessray ethos to genuinely compete (as mentioned earlier this is a team with a histroy of intensive testing, and times have indeed changed...).

    Above all I want to see good racing and, despite the dominance of a certain red Bull driver, we have had that. Hoping for more (than half?!?) of the same in 2012...

  • Comment number 58.

    i would still say Ferrari are still there or there abouts, Seb has had a lot of luck along the way and if he was having the same luck as Webber then it clearly would be a 5 way fight between 3 constructors

  • Comment number 59.

    @58 I agree spongie old boy. I think the Merc's could be in the running next year too. Maybe not title contenders in the long run, but podium contenders in more races than we've seen so far.

  • Comment number 60.

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

  • Comment number 61.

    F1 on Sky will be rubbish and expensive.

    Next year I am certain that Ferrari will be in the hunt. This year has been somewhat unusual in that behind Vettel it has been very close. Alonso's consistency has currently put him 2nd in the championship, and if results go his way he may well end up as runner up again. The McLaren may be faster but results have been erratic with too many mistakes. Hopefully next year Mercedes will build a car that can compete. Four teams fighting for the to will be something to watch!

  • Comment number 62.

    Dear AJP and tiggerspp

    You have obviously not heard of the individual's right to peaceful protest.

    You also seem to think it is perfectly acceptable for the BBC and the likes of FOTA voicepiece, Martin Whitmarsh to promise the continuation of free-to-air (for at least another year) and then retract it.

    I for one, will not be buying into Murdoch's meglomanic empire on principle.

    I will continue questioning the BBC's policy of turning it's back on a massive and dedicated audience to throw £millions at some truly awful writers and (so-called) comics on BBC3.

    and so tiggerspp, you can carry on with your cheap smarmy insults. You are obviously so much better and more intelligent than the rest of us, I 'm surprised you bother to converse here at all.

  • Comment number 63.

    If Ferrari had of sorted out their developments sooner in the season and got within a sniff off Red Bull then no doubt Alonso would have been able to get them the points they need. I'm no Alonso fan but that man has raw speed and can out perform the car he is driving. One obvious visual difference between the Red bulls and the other cars is the amount the front wheels on the Red bull lean inwards. Is this something the other teams should be looking at? Or is it a setup that only suits the Red bulls.

  • Comment number 64.

    Specifically AJP, if your beloved football club offered you free* entry to all matches for three years, but then half way through the deal, they took half of the matches away from you, I imagine you'd be pretty hacked off.

    But of course the *free wasn't really free, as we were collectively paying for it anyway.

  • Comment number 65.

    @9. Honest Bob "If the BBC were a F1 team they would be Williams; once very good but now half arsed and rubbish."

    At least Williams will be on the grid for every race in 2012.

  • Comment number 66.
    just watch from 2 hours 35 minutes for a minute or so. There is maybe 100+ people all chanting "get off sky" and "no to sky". This is in Italy. It happened at Hungery when Jake had to move away from the crowd.
    I just wish you had told us this decision before Silverstone, but i guess you will hear us loud and clear next year!
    BBC hang your heads in shame.
    No to Sky!

  • Comment number 67.

    haha, i reckon tony jardine is almost as good as charlie chaplin

  • Comment number 68.

    I'm past caring about the technicalities of next season as I wont be watching it at all. I've been a fan since I was a young child and could hear the cars pounding round Silverstone from my backgarden in Towcester. I haven't missed a race in over 10 years, and have hardly missed a session since the BBC started televising them. But I'm not going to watch half a season, missing possibly great races, and watching halfa**ed highlights. You lost me as a MOTOGP viewer when you butchered it' coverage after you won F1, now you're going to lose me as an F1 viewer which has been pretty much the only thing on the BBC of any quality. T

  • Comment number 69.

    It would be intresting to see Ferrari in 2012, however until the BBC answer the question about showing full reruns of the non live races, If we will be able to see Ferrari in 2012 is still open to question.

  • Comment number 70.

    It's sad to be talking now about F1 in 2012, and esp. Ferrari because the odds of us being able to see Alonso storming around the tracks are dwindling each day that goes by with no mention of what is going to happen to ensure decent fta coverage next season. As said above a few minutes of a few laps is not going to hack it :(

  • Comment number 71.

    "The deal is done, no amount of complaining will stop it"
    You're not a long term F1 fan are you? If you are, you'll know that Bernie is forever blowing hot and cold with his stupid ideas. He'll throw out a curve ball, await public reaction, mumble some cryptic reply when questioned about it and then back-track. He's nothing if not predictable!

  • Comment number 72.

    Not sure whether to care about Ferrrai in 2012 or not. Unless the BBC reverses it decision to only show 50% of the championship live, I won't be watching F1 any more. I've no wish to watch a delayed race already knowing the result or 'highlights'. This is a crying shame as I've followed F1 since 1994

  • Comment number 73.

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

  • Comment number 74.

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

  • Comment number 75.

    @Marcus - your comments are somewhat at odds with the facts. There are approx 20 million license payers in the UK meaning the BBC has the largest revenue stream of any broadcaster by a wide margin.

    The BBC had a contract. Sky did not 'outbid' the BBC as there was nothing to bid for. The BBC invited Sky to partner them and so gave Sky a foot in the F1 door that would otherwise not have been possible. That is why we are angry with the BBC and that is why critical comments on BBC F1-related blogs are entirely appropriate.

  • Comment number 76.

    At least Ferrari are looking to compete in 2012 and beyond, more than can be said for the BBC.

    Plus Marcus if you have got a TV then you have to pay for a licence (£12pm by the way) regardless of whether you watch BBC or not - or maybe you haven't ?

    So as timn1971 says the BBC have a huge revenue stream to play with and we get Escape to the Country, Egg heads, Country Bake Off, Hairy Bikers, Watch Dog, and about another 200+ hours of rubbish spread across 4 channels each week.

    F1 is 4 hours a weekend 20 times a year only, but at least it's excellent quality output.

  • Comment number 77.

    i dont really care if ferrari go the way of williams tbh (mind you im a lifelong McLaren fan so would say that wouldint i)

    all i care really about is watching good close wheel to wheel racing at the front preferably on the bbc as i dont speak german

    can i just say if anyone thinks sky have improved football then they r wrong skys money has ruined the game sure their tv coverage is top notch but thanks to them virtually every prem team is in the red or has a forign billionare owner. i cant afford to go to a match anymore :( ( well i gotta blame someone might as well be sky lol )

  • Comment number 78.

    Two things strike me about this and both make me laugh. First, all these so called pundit geniuses from the BBC, that are only now writing about the title being Vettels, when that was a given way, way back.
    The second being the number of people complaining F1 won't be free next year. Don't you guys know yet, that you pay through the nose year in and year out for your 'free' viewing. The Beeb, just like the CBC here in Canada is a government (i.e. you) funded operation that is only good at what it does because it never has to earn a living competing in the market place, with independent broadcasters.

  • Comment number 79.

    @73 - your argument holds no water against even superficial examination and is factually challenged.

  • Comment number 80.

    There seem's to be a loads of posts saying 'stop moaning about the sky deal and get on with it' Is this where BS, BG, AB and the others have been hiding? perhaps they think that if they post enough pro sky deal then everbody will fall in line with the BBC. Well TS NO WAY!!!!!

  • Comment number 81.

    Regarding the TV deal, To all those fans who are saying it is a done deal, it is not! It was a done deal that BBC would have exclusive coverage until 2013, that has changed and with enough pressure this one would be to.

    As for Sky improving the coverage that is most certainly not a given. As a huge Football and Tennis fan my opinion is 50-50, Their football coverage is excellent and did raise the bar. The tennis coverage is very poor and vastly inferior to what the BBC produce.

    I do hope this decision can be changed and am pleased to see so many people still angry about it.

    Regarding the article I hope Ferrari and Mclaren will take the fight to Red Bull from the start next year, however I hope even more that I get to see it!

  • Comment number 82.

    @73 - Capitalism depends destruction and regeneration to succeed. If you want to apply the principles of capitalism to Formula 1, then we are now entering the destruction phase.

    I've done the math, as a new customer you're paying £50.25 a month for Sky, Sky sports and HD ( £603 a year for 10 live races as the other 10 are on the BBC, plus your TV license. Hardly value for money for the Sky customer.

    On the Other hand the BBC license payer now gets 10 live races instead of 20, which is also a worse deal for the TV license payer, whether you like F1 or not.

    So as a result, everyone is worse off.

  • Comment number 83.

    *depends on

  • Comment number 84.

    when is the bbc going to explain why next years sky deal is better for the viewers?

  • Comment number 85.

    Like Farrari I've given up on this year.

    Vetted has clearly won and although the races are still exciting on a race by race basis I think they will get less so as many of the teams start to look to next year.

    Unfortunately I've not got next year to look forward to as I usually watch with live timing and twitter open. The experience won't be the same with only highlights and no live timing.

    So I'm left wondering if like Farrari I should give up on this year as well. The races go long haul so will be on very early in the morning and I'm certainly in no mood to get up specially to watch the BBC any more after the way they have treat their fans.

    Survey on indicates 97% of Viewers won't be watching on Sky next year so I wonder how many of those will settle for highlights?

    For those complaining about comments about the Sky deal on blogs the BBC have only themselves to blame. They have given little information on the deal and have remained quiet throughout. If they really believe these blogs are for fans they should open one exclusively for discussion about next year so the other blogs can remain on topic.

  • Comment number 86.

    84# They already have. Their argument is that without that deal, there would be no F1 on BBC.

    Personally, I think that's rubbish, as the teams insist on free-to-air coverage. The reality is had the BBC had any balls they should have said 'actually - we will pay X, which is fair, and you will only allow Sky to show limited coverage and highlights. Otherwise you'll have to do a better deal with ITV'.

    But they were too stupid and gutless. But yes, they have explained it.

  • Comment number 87.

    Remember you will not need a TV Licence to watch 'Highlights' or even a full race 'Re-Run' on the iplayer Treat the BBC with the same contempt as they have shown to the F1 fans. Don't pay the telly tax!

  • Comment number 88.

    ferrari aren't the only team to let down and disappoint their fans this year, team bbc have announced they will be only running half the season next year so sad. No to sky and before anyone comments me and my wife have been to support silverstone for the last three years. copse, woodcote and village.(village was excellent) we will both be very sad not to watch next year as it's some thing we have spent 25 years watching together but you have to have principles in life like marriage that you stick to. no to sky, no to half season.

  • Comment number 89.

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

  • Comment number 90.

    Ferrari fans will be hoping that the 10 races they can actually see live next year (thanks so much BBC) will feature Ferrari wins. I on the other hand don't.

  • Comment number 91.

    Interesting article of support from outside the UK via pitpass on the elephant in the room and ability to view F1 and of course how well Ferrari will go in 2012...

    " I've watched the nightmare British fans face if they want to see F1 on their televisions. The matter remains somewhat red hot and I understand that BBC seniors have been summoned to explain their decisions to the lower house of Parliament.

    For those who missed it or are unaffected, it seems that Britain's publicly funded broadcaster - who presently air F1 - have entered into a deal with a pay TV provider which sees the free-to-air coverage of F1 halved. That is to say only half the season will be free-to-air. The remainder will be available to subscribers of a pay TV network. But guess what? The pay TV network doesn't offer "half-a-season-of-the-F1-races-that-aren't-free-to-air" packages. You either pay for the whole year or you miss out.

    Since the machinations of this decision are yet to be explained to the oldest democratic parliament in the world, I dare not speculate too much on how or why it happened. Both the British publicly-funded broadcaster and the sage representative of commercial rights holder of F1 have both made their version of events public and I do not think it unfair to suggest that the two do not tally. I've little knowledge of the BBC's track record but I do know that Mr. Ecclestone is rarely flawed when he bothers to speak publicly. Methinks that the BBC may have made a mistake.

    Semantics aside, there is a rather large elephant in that room nobody is willing to acknowledge. Not by tusk or trunk. Every team on the F1 grid sells its sponsorship and partner packages based of the comparative air-time of branding relative to purchasing TV advertising directly. If the UK audience is hobbled from the broad dissemination of free-to-air to those-who-can-be-ar$£d-paying-for-F1-coverage, all those sales numbers go out the window like a New York Stock Broker during the Great Depression. The move from entirely free-to-air in the UK to partially-free-to-air may open some rather ugly litigious floodgates for F1 teams. "

    Wake Up F1.

  • Comment number 92.

    Any of the few posters here trying to support the Sky deal obviously work for Sky promotion. Why else would anyone post in support of the deal? Its just ludicrous to try to say paying £40 or more a month extra to watch with added advertisements before and after the race is better.

    Why should we shut up about it. Channel 4 would have the coverage if BBC didn't team up with Sky and deprive the most of us the chance to follow something we have for years.

    As for the article it looks like Ferrari are going to continue to struggle unless they come across another Rory Byrne or Adrian Newy. They could end up falling behind Mercedes too next year with the recruitment drive they are at.

  • Comment number 93.

    The most frustrating thing about this whole fiasco is that the 'haves' will yet again prosper against the 'have nots'. I, as a young man ( and a poor one at that) am obligated by law to buy a tv licence. I can barely find the money for this, so how can anyone call this deal fair?

    Am I less of an enthusiast than the fan with a healthy income and an easy life, who concurrently is able to pay for sky?

    No one has the right to free f1 coverage. Yet it is thus presumed that if I could afford to pay exhorbitantly for sky, I would be more entitled to full coverage!

    I could accept this deal if I felt my licence fee went to other equally viewed/acclaimed programming. But it isn't.

    If I could opt out of paying tv licence I would. But I'd be breaking the law.

    Ironic how the agreement to keep f1 FTA can be broken with such ease...

  • Comment number 94.

    I thought the subject here was Ferrari and it's current plight. I must be wrong? No, I'm not. Why this has turned into some sort of BBC/SKY-bashing exercise I don't know - nor do I care as I don't live in the U.K. and thus have little understanding of the machinations of your local television broadcasters. I will not be drawn into ill-informed and gratuitous comments on that account.

    When it comes to F1 and its predecessors, though, I don't mind having a bit of a chat. Whilst I am sure that there are others reading this who have followed motor racing from before the 'World Championship' came into being I am restricted to my own experience - and that which I have read of the time before that.

    Some of the above comments seem to be about the 'boring' or 'non-competitive' nature of F1 in this day and age. Cooper, Lotus, Renault, Williams, McLaren, Brabham, Ferrari, Mercedes, Alfa Romeo (plus a couple of others) have all had their day in the sun. Who could forget the rather attractive looking Matra with Jackie Stewart at the helm? Certainly the latter was a one season triumph, but 8 out of 11 isn't too shabby a record.

    At this point in time the Red Bull team is the dominant force; compare that with the Williams/McLaren era of the 80s and 90s and it pales to insignificance. Then there was the Ferrari/Schumacher combination of 2000-2005.

    Stirling Moss was one of the best drivers I have ever had the privilege to watch pilot a missile and I'd put Jim Clark up with him. Mr Moss didn't win a driver's championship whilst Mr Clark won a couple.

    I'd best shut up now.

  • Comment number 95.

    @94 - interesting comments. I don't think that F1 is boring this season, not compared to some previous seasons, but then how much of that is down to DRS and other gadgets? That's a whole other debate, the result for me though is that we've had some good racing regardless of Vettell's domination this year.

    On the subject of Sky, you are on a BBC forum occupied mostly by Brits who have been sold out by the BBC to Sky. The Sky subject will be discussed for a long time to come such is the strength of feeling amongst UK F1 fans (who aren't employed by Sky). The anger is mainly directed at the BBC however, Sky took an opportunity that the BBC introduced them to.

  • Comment number 96.

    well having watched the preview of sky's F1 coverage where they seem to think that we are only concerned with betting on the race I for one and actually glad that I cannot afford to line Rupert Murdoch's pockets it is really sad that there is no F1 on the BBC next year (what good is half a season?) but thats the result of the greedy me me society that we live in a few make it - most lose out

  • Comment number 97.

    It's quite depressing and mildly insulting, having the BBC opening a blog about Ferrari and there plans for 2012. as the majority of British viewers will have long since deserted ship. As there are doing already, the Belgian GP wasn't even in the Top 30 of viewing figures, compared to the GP's before the annoucment. Ferrari might be open (not usual for them) and let us, the fans, know their plans for next year. Is isn't about time the BBC followed suit? NTS

  • Comment number 98.

    I understand why teams that have given up on the current year would start to focus on next year's car in order to get a time advantage over just doing winter development. It's a good idea. But I don't get why you would advertise this to your competitors. Now they know that you won't be as competitive they can also decide to reduce development on the current year and turn to next year's development earlier.

    Also in regard to the TV rights for next year I'm also sad that it will be leaving the BBC, which has provided excellent coverage. I'm not going to get sky just for the F1 as I cannot justify the cost.

  • Comment number 99.

    Good work Sarah. Oh and no to Sky as well.

  • Comment number 100.

    Its a shame the BBC havnt put a link to this blog on the F1 Blog homepage, but at least its accessable from the main F1 home page.


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