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Old 28 Mar 2019, 00:54 (Ref:3893824)   #46
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No need to be so defensive, I'm specifically saying I'm leaving it up to other people to pass the judgement.
Oh, I agree! Cheers

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Old 28 Mar 2019, 00:58 (Ref:3893825)   #47
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Judgement passed. Good reasoned point of view Richard.
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Old 28 Mar 2019, 12:08 (Ref:3893902)   #48
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Casper should be qualifying in the top 10 on the gridCasper should be qualifying in the top 10 on the grid
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I think that's indeed too optimistic! You make a very good point that points are not the entire story. So let me give my view on that. Maybe I have too long a memory but after winter testing and Gasly's random 4th place at Bahrain, there was talk of Red Bull switching to Honda mid-season, Toro Rosso would fight Red Bull on track, Toro Rosso was definitely not sacrificing their season to help out Honda and a lot more bla bla. All of this perpetuated by Honda and Red Bull PR folk. When things started going south, all of a sudden the story switched and people seemed to just accept the new reality of TR as being just a test mule for RB. It's revisionism and everybody just seemed to go along with it.

And then there's the infamous 'Canada upgrade' which was widely reported as the deciding factor for Red Bull to with Honda for 2019. There was talk of 'over 40 HP extra' and that the engine definitely leapfrogged Renault and could maybe even rival Ferrari. The media frenzy was insane, and nobody seemed to point out the obvious: nothing changed. The team scored fewer points, didn't qualify or race any better and only ended up getting more grid penalties because parts kept getting replaced. Again, somehow people saw that as a good sign in some twisted way. The reports kept talking about the 'much lauded Canada update' but nobody ever expanded on what that actually did. It didn't seem to make the engine more reliable, or faster.

My hypothesis: Honda gets a lot of (very undeserved in my view) slack for some reason, both in the media and the fan'osphere. Is it because they're some kind of underdog? Is it because they're Japanese and they are somehow more respected than the French of Renault? If the Renault guy said anything he would get shouted down and nobody would believe a word he said. But now somehow almost everyone swallows everything that comes out of the Honda camp. Helmut Marko is almost never taken seriously but when he says something positive about Honda people suddenly think he's on to something. I'm simply baffled by it all!
No one with any credibility and knowledge of what would be involved would say that. A lot of forums and uninformed press were floating it but it was never going to happen as the logistics of doing it are huge.
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Old 28 Mar 2019, 12:14 (Ref:3893905)   #49
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Would they have been allowed to switch? How would the limited number of engines that they can use have fitted in?
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Old 28 Mar 2019, 13:18 (Ref:3893915)   #50
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Would they have been allowed to switch? How would the limited number of engines that they can use have fitted in?
I suspect that outside of a force majeure scenario, the rules prevent teams from switching. Poor performance of (or poor relationship with) your current supplier would not count. There was talk amongst fans of an early switch given the poor relationship with Renault, but I think it was always fantasy. I ďthinkĒ we even discussed this at the time on this forum? It might have also been in the Honda/McLaren context. Of McLaren switching mid-season? I think Honda would have had to walk away from F1 and refuse to supply power units to trigger an allowance for McLaren. I think Red Bull/Renault was even more fantasy than Honda/McLaren.

This is history and generally a moot point. It it was going on now, and I had more free time (busy day today) I might dig and find the regulations that talk to this.

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Old 28 Mar 2019, 23:14 (Ref:3894012)   #51
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I suspect that outside of a force majeure scenario, the rules prevent teams from switching.
I was wrong. The sporting regulations (Art 8.3) say you can switch engine supplier mid season. But I think only the points scored for the engine nominated at the start of the season count towards WCC. Not sure of impact toward WDC. I assume engine allowance counts are independent of supplier, but didnít dig in the regulations for that info.

So itís doable, but painful.

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Old 1 Apr 2019, 18:58 (Ref:3894728)   #52
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So the RBR Honda situation is interesting. They certainly appear to be further back from Ferrari and Mercedes than previously. They don't look like they could steal a cheeky win like they previously could. So from that you could say they're worse off.

But looking at the current state of the Renault powered teams, specifically the works Renault team, it's hard to argue they didn't make the right choice. McLaren appear to have made a significant step forward, so it will be interesting to see what happens with the RBR -> McLaren gap.

RBR appear to be in a position where they've taken a step back, but the other option looks to be two steps back.
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Old 2 Apr 2019, 13:16 (Ref:3894855)   #53
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Well it seems Max was blaming the chassis, which makes a nice change!
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Old 2 Apr 2019, 13:45 (Ref:3894868)   #54
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I think if we had not had the significant chassis changes this year it might make it easier to measure relative progress of Honda vs. the other power unit manufactures. As it stands now, who did a good job (and who didn't) with the new regulations is clouding things a bit. Plus, everyone (including Mercedes and Ferrari) are not static with respect to their power unit improvements. Harder to compare 2018 vs. 2019.

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Old 1 May 2019, 14:34 (Ref:3901003)   #55
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The thread has somewhat gone cold. I would say mostly due to a lack of real news, but there has been some. The topic came up in the Future Rules thread as well. In an effort to keep topics in the right threads. Here is some quick thoughts...

Red Bull Racing has said that they are not exactly happy with the 2019 car, but they say they are making improvements. It seems there are three teams at the front with Red Bull Racing at the tail end of that top three. Max continues to lead the team. I wonder what things might have looked like if Ricciardo had stayed with the team. Is Max showing the true potential of the RBR package or is he so good that he is driving beyond what can be expected from RBR? Hard to say.

Enough about RBR. What about Honda?

So I think a good place to read on the technical stuff is the forum at https://www.f1technical.net Their moderators can be over enthusiastic at times as they often delete posts as they try to keep things on topic within a given thread and to cut down on the noise level. So it's not particularly a newbie friendly place, but lots of good info.

I am stealing a meme I found there that I think is funny and accurate. Basically it is commentary on the string of "20 more horsepower" upgrades...



Clearly the joke is that Honda should be smoking the field at this point with their excessive power levels. I think Honda was guilty of this early on. I think the root was the Canadian GP last year? Since then I think Honda has been a bit more reserved with their own comments as to improvements, but that hasn't stopped RBR/TR (really Helmet Marko who is always good for memorable and idiotic quotes) from providing very specific numbers for upgrades. I think the real story has been incremental improvements, but spread out all over the place. Be it top end power, qualifying mode improvements, non-ICE improvements, drivability etc.

Stealing another image from that forum...



To be honest, I haven't delved too deeply into the info behind this image, but it is supposed to show the respective qualifying pace based upon Baku. There can be some arguments as to who got a tow from who, but broadly speaking it shows the relatively tight group up front. But... a half second gap from the leader is a lot in F1. But not as bad as the midfield!

Someone else was trying to do analysis of length of time spend on the long Baku straights in qualifying between Honda and Ferrari. With the implication being this is a power track and it should show some type of relative power unit performance (assuming similar car setup and level of aero drag which is always a problem in these types of comparisons). In the end, it shows that Honda is loosing time to Ferrari, but not too far back. If you believe that persons analysis... he says it is looking better than the 2018 delta at the same track. So that could be showing that the 2019 Honda is better than the 2018 Renault. Whatever that means. This also assumes Ferrari remained static.

As to reliability issues. Analysis of Kvyat's engine from Chinese GP exposed a previously unknown defect. This triggered Honda to move forward an expected spec to Baku. Apparently the defective part was already redesigned in the Spec 2 package. So moving it up slightly was the easy solution. So everyone got the new spec. But overall the reliability seems to be on the upswing compared to years before.

Other reports say that Honda plans three more evolutions of the power unit during the season. It is said that Honda is planning three more stages/expansion levels during 2019. The next around Montreal or Paul Ricard, another at Spa and the timing of the last is depending on the situation at the end of the year.

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Old 1 May 2019, 15:41 (Ref:3901026)   #56
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Well there's not much to report on, because Honda have gone so well. It has helped RBR. Obviously the whole package works so far

We'll see how the rest of the season goes. So many technical details in F1 something could change

It's a good start, but all could change in an instant
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Old 1 May 2019, 17:58 (Ref:3901051)   #57
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Taxi645 has a lot of promise if they can keep it on the circuit!
Again, between passing Perez and Gasly's driveshaft failure Verstappen took out almost 10s from Bottas, Hamilton and Vettel:
http://en.mclarenf-1.com/index.php?p...tteri%20Bottas

If that doesn't tell something about the current RB package competitiveness than I don't know what will.

I reckon they will need or are going to improve more than the competition on the following:

1 Tyre understanding/management, closing the gap to Mercedes on difficult tyre tracks.
2 Further improvements in aero effectiveness/consistency.
3 Further engine performance improvements.

Point 2 has already improved a lot from Bahrain testing after the first few races. I expect them to make good gains again in Barcelona. Peak drivetrain output for Q3 and critical race stages will still be a challenge for the time being I reckon. However if they can compensate sufficiently in the above area's I see them regular winning races in the short term.
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Old 1 May 2019, 20:54 (Ref:3901079)   #58
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Statistics don't prove anything.

At this point in time (4 races done) they have less wins than last year, and less podiums than in 2017.
But they do have more points than in either year.

Is that progress, or is that worse than before?
Or shall we call that status quo?


To me - at this moment - Honda instead of Renault is just a sidestep.
They were 3rd, they're still 3rd.

At some races last year they were the 2nd or even the strongest force, chances are that they will be just at certain races again this year. But overall: still 3rd.
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Old 1 May 2019, 21:27 (Ref:3901086)   #59
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Statistics don't prove anything.
I think a true statistician would agree with you. Statistics is not about "proving" anything, but to help build confidence in a particular proposition. So they may say something is more likely than not, vs "X = Y".

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At this point in time (4 races done) they have less wins than last year, and less podiums than in 2017.
But they do have more points than in either year.

Is that progress, or is that worse than before?
Or shall we call that status quo?


To me - at this moment - Honda instead of Renault is just a sidestep.
They were 3rd, they're still 3rd.

At some races last year they were the 2nd or even the strongest force, chances are that they will be just at certain races again this year. But overall: still 3rd.
The comments above. Who are you talking about? RBR? At this point last year they had did have one win by a driver who is no longer with the team. They also had four retirements between both drivers. This year they have one retirement, no wins and if you focus on the only driver that is consistent between those two years (Max), no delta in wins, less retirements and a higher average finishing position! Not to mention the aero rule changes over the season.

What is my point? Numbers can be twisted to tell any story you want. In the end it is the driver and constructor points that matter and those only matter at the end of the season. And even those only matter to define... WDC and WCC. Both of which are driven by the large factors of... Team, Chassis, Power Unit and Driver. Even the stuff I quote above (which are favorable to RBR 2019 vs. 2018) really say nothing about Honda.

To be honest, while some comparisons can be made, it's pretty early to make many conclusions. But we are seeing STRONG directions of where things are likely to go.

My personal opinion is that Mercedes has their act together in a massive way. Ferrari has improved and RBR has on average stayed in the same place. RBR seems better in some areas (maybe slightly better power unit, but the jury is still out), worse in others (2019 car maybe not as good as 2018, only one proven driver with multiple race wins vs. two from last year).

Sorry if I appear to be "pumping up" Honda. That is not my goal. I generally am pretty critical of Honda. But I try to be critical of specific quantifiable things and less about emotional "they haven't elevated someone to a championship yet, so they suck and should quit" type of stuff. Regardless, I am "defending" Honda more than I should. So I am going to try to stop or cut back on that.

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Old 2 May 2019, 01:27 (Ref:3901107)   #60
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There is obviously a fundamental problem with the regen. on the Honda.

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