Bottas calls Q1 elimination “unbelievable”

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Valtteri Bottas has called his elimination during Q1 for the British Grand Prix “unbelievable” after wet weather caught Williams out on Saturday afternoon.

Silverstone was hit with intermittent showers during qualifying, forcing drivers to continually switch between the intermediate and dry compound tires. After mis-timing their final runs, both Williams and Ferrari saw their drivers drop out during Q1, and Bottas did not mince his words when speaking about the result.

“The whole session was unbelievable,” he said. “We left it too late to go out on the dry tire so we didn’t get the run in as it started to rain again.

“Truthfully we were unlucky it started to rain. We had the pace to get to Q3 so we missed a good opportunity.

“It’s a long race tomorrow and we have a good car so we can still get back into the points, but again the weather will play its part.”

Williams had been riding on a high after Bottas and teammate Felipe Massa finished in third and fourth place at the Austrian Grand Prix, but this optimism has come to a crashing end at Silverstone today.

“It was really a missed opportunity to get the car in a good position for tomorrow,” commented head of vehicle development Rob Smedley. “We didn’t expect the rain and the track was drying so we had to get the lap in.

“The moment it started raining again, that was it, it was over. We have a lot to do tomorrow and it will not be easy but the car is quicker than where we are.”

Bottas and Massa qualified in 17th and 18th place respectively, but both drivers will make up two places on the starting grid thanks to penalties for Esteban Gutierrez and Max Chilton.

You can watch the British Grand Prix live on CNBC and Live Extra from 7:30am ET tomorrow.

Formula One names Stefano Domenicali as its new CEO

Stefano Domenicali named F1 CEO
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Former Ferarri chief Stefano Domenicali was named the new president and CEO of F1, replacing Chase Carey in January 2021, Liberty Media announced Friday.

Domenicali, 55, will join Formula One from Lamborghini, where he had been CEO and president.

He worked on Ferrari’s F1 team for nearly 20 years, becoming the team principal in 2008. He left in 2014 and worked at Audi before joining Lamborghini.

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“I am thrilled to join the Formula 1 organization, a sport that has always been part of my life,” Domenicali said in a release. “I was born in Imola and live in Monza.  I’ve remained connected to the sport through my work with the Single Seater Commission at the FIA and I look forward to connecting with the teams, promoters, sponsors and many partners in Formula 1 as we continue to drive the business ahead.

“The past six years at Audi and then leading Lamborghini have given me broader perspective and experience that I will bring to Formula 1.”

Carey, who had led F1 since Liberty’s Formula One Group took control of the organization in 2017, will move to the role of non-executive chairman.

“Chase has done a phenomenal job leading F1,” Liberty Media President and CEO Greg Maffei said in a statement. “He assembled a first-class commercial and sporting organization that has a long list of achievements, including broadening the appeal of the sport, growing its digital presence, establishing new technical regulations, securing a cost cap for the first time and reaching a new more equitable Concorde agreement with the teams.  His actions have reinforced F1 as the pinnacle of motorsport.”

Said Carey: “It has been an honor to lead Formula 1, a truly global sport with a storied past over the last seventy years. I’m proud of the team that’s not only navigated through an immensely challenging 2020 but returned with added purpose and determination in the areas of sustainability, diversity and inclusion.  I’m confident that we’ve built the strong foundation for the business to grow over the long term.”