2014 F1 rules ‘a huge technical and financial challenge’

1 Comment

Toro Rosso team principal Franz Tost described F1’s new rules for 2014 as a “huge challenge – both technically and economically”.

Speaking in an interview with the official Formula One website Tost said he expects engine prices to double next year for the new V6 turbo units with sophisticated Energy Recovery Units.

“We think that the costs for the power train will be 100 percent more that it is now. You have to swallow that in 2014. 2015 and 2016 will hopefully see a dramatic fall in expenses, but in 2014 you have to dig deep into your pocket.”

Tost warned that a consequence of reopening engine development could be a less competitive field. “What I worry about is whether we will see as tight a field as we have now and which has produced very interesting races,” he said. “Now we have regulations that are very tight and so technical excesses are not possible.”

He described the planned changes as “a totally new Formula One”.

“All technical philosophies of the here and now will be abandoned for something completely new. And to implement that brand new power unit into the car will be an interesting story for the engineers and will mean a completely new strategy.

“You have a turbo engine, the much stronger ERS unleashing something around 160 horsepower and then you have the limited fuel injection. To optimally combine these three factors will be the key to success.”

Josef Newgarden wins pole for Grand Prix of Alabama

1 Comment

With time running off the clock, Josef Newgarden lapped Barber Motorsports Park with a speed of 122.773 mph to win his third career pole and first on this track in the Grand Prix of Alabama.

Newgarden was .0128 seconds faster than teammate Scott Dixon in second.

Newgarden has two previous wins at Barber. He won last year’s edition of this race after starting seventh and in 2015 from fifth.

“I didn’t know if that was going to be enough,” Newgarden said after winning the pole.

“Team Chevy has done a good job,” Newgarden said. “They’ve really given us good power this weekend – good driveability. We’re going to need some fuel mileage tomorrow, which I think we’ll have. But it’s going to get mixed up with the rain.”

Dixon’s lap of 122.750 mph was not quite enough.

“I’m sure you could pick out a number of different things on a lap when it’s that close,” Power said about what made the slight difference between him and Newgarden. “A little mistake out of 9; a little lift here or there.”

Sebastien Bourdais (122.605 mph) qualified third, with Ryan Hunter-Reay (122.159) and James Hinchliffe (121.859) rounding out the top five.

Scott Dixon was the last driver in the top six.

Fast 12

Newgarden topped this chart with a speed of 123.475 mph.

He brought Power, James Hinchcliffe, Scott Dixon, Ryan Hunter-Reay, and Sebastien Bourdais along with him to the Fast 6.

Marco Andretti (122.480), Alexander Rossi (122.216), Simon Pagenaud (122.050), Robert Wickens (122.042), Zach Veach (121.784) and Ed Jones (120.984) failed to advance.

Round 1, Group 1

Newgarden posted the fastest single lap in round one, group one of qualification for the Grand Prix of Alabama with a speed of 122.550 mph.

Hunter-Reay, Hinchcliffe, Wickens, and Andretti also advance to the fast 12.

Taking the final slot was Jones with a speed of 119.835 mph after an off-course excursion in final practice.

This was Andretti’s first advancement to the fast 12 for the first time since 2014.

Round 1, Group 2

Power had the fastest lap of 121.570 mph.

Bourdais, Veach (who is battling food poisoning-like symptoms), Rossi, and Pagenaud grabbed positions 2-4.

Scott Dixon had an uncharacteristically slow lap of 121.006, but managed to advance to the fast 12 when the session was red-flagged for an incident involving Tony Kanaan.

With three minutes remaining, Kanaan spun into the tire barriers while leaving pit road. Since he brought out the red flag, he lost his qualification time of 119.996 mph.

Takuma Sato had slipped off-course midway through the session and posted only the Ninth-fastest speed of 120.789 mph.