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Ecclestone: F1 needs new engine rules to end Mercedes’ dominance

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Formula 1 CEO Bernie Ecclestone believes the sport needs new engine rules if Mercedes’ domination is to come to an end.

Mercedes has ruled over proceedings at the front of the pack for the past three seasons following the switch to V6 turbo power units for the 2014 season.

Although there has been a noticeable convergence in engine performance over the past three seasons, Mercedes’ advantage remains sizeable enough for it to sweep to 19 out of a possible 21 victories in 2016.

2017 will see an overhaul of the technical regulations that places a greater onus on aerodynamics once again, but Ecclestone believes Mercedes’ advantage is such that it will only lose ground when the engine regulations are changed again.

“Red Bull believe they can beat Mercedes with better aerodynamics. However, I’m not so sure about that,” Ecclestone told Sport Bild.

“Mercedes’ advantage on the engine side still is large. Because of this we have to introduce new engine rules as soon as possible.”

Ecclestone believes that F1 should not focus on more palatable road-relevant power units, and instead return to more spectacular engines.

“The important thing is to rule out the hybrid engines. [FIA president] Jean Todt thinks they are the spirit of our times, and this may be true for normal road cars.

“But in F1, people want to see something special. They want to have noisy, powerful engines that can be managed only by the best drivers in the world.

“You don’t put orthopedic shoes onto your pro football players, do you, just because these kinds of shoes are popular in everyday life?

“The rules must be changed, all of them. They are too complicated. We are in the entertainment business.

“But how are we supposed to entertain people when the audience doesn’t understand a thing any more?”

The current iteration of F1 engine regulations are set to remain in place until the end of the 2020 season at the earliest.

Recapping the proper Lewis Hamilton, Sebastian Vettel rivalry (VIDEO)

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Lewis Hamilton and Sebastien Vettel are the two most decorated drivers currently on the Formula 1 grid, with seven World Championships between them (four for Vettel, and three for Hamilton).

However, their paths have rarely crossed on the track, and only in 2010 did both drivers battle each for a World Championship in the same year. They also battled Fernando Alonso and Mark Webber that year, with Vettel emerging on top to claim his first World Championship.

However, the 2017 season sees Hamilton and Vettel in the two best cars on the grid, and they have gone head-to-head multiple times already this year, with each claiming two victories through the first five races. Currently, Vettel leads Hamilton 104-98 in the world championship, and the two men are developing a strong on-track rivalry.

Monaco Grand Prix coverage continues with FP3 and qualifying on Saturday. Full times are linked here.

 

Take a look behind the scenes of Fernando Alonso’s Indy 500 qualifying runs (VIDEO)

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In Friday’s NASCAR AMERICA Motorsports Special on NBCSN, we take you behind the scenes during F1 superstar Fernando Alonso’s qualifying runs for the Indy 500, including when he was on the pole for a brief period. He’ll eventually start fifth. 

Simulator ride tells what Fernando Alonso can expect in Indianapolis 500 (VIDEO)

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On Friday’s NASCAR AMERICA Motorsports Special on NBCSN, Parker Kligerman and his backseat driver, Kyle Petty, took to the iRacing simulator to make a mock run around Indianapolis Motor Speedway in preparation for Sunday’s Indianapolis 500.

They look at the challenges of IMS, as well as the challenges two-time Formula One champion Fernando Alonso will face in the first oval track race in his illustrious career. Alonso is among the favorites in the race and will take the green flag from the middle of Row 2 (fifth position).

Check out the above video.  

Legendary announcer Ken Squier gets you ready for Sunday’s big day of racing (VIDEO)

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Sunday is the biggest day of the year in motorsports, starting in the morning with Formula 1’s legendary Monaco Grand Prix.

Then, at Noon ET, it’s the 101st running of the Indianapolis 500 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

The final part of the tripleheader of racing is NASCAR’s longest race of the season, the 400-lap, 600-mile Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

Newly-named NASCAR Hall of Fame Class of 2018 inductee Ken Squier gives you a great primer for what promises to be a memorable day around the world (see video above).