McLaren Suffer Cooling Pressure Issues at Jerez

The McLaren MP4-30 suffered a technical failure on Tuesday.
The McLaren MP4-30 suffered a cooling pressure failure on Tuesday.
Photo: Eurosport

McLaren was forced to retire from the third day of testing at Jerez after a cooling pressure failure on the car.  The team managed 32 laps in the morning session making day three their most productive yet.

The problem forced McLaren to take the engine out of the car, ending the day’s testing session.

“We’ve had a loss of cooling water pressure and have removed the power unit for inspection. That’s a long process, so it ends today’s running.”

The MP4-30 was being driven by Fernando Alonso when the problem occurred, according to a statement earlier today. 

“The issue was promptly spotted by Fernando on an outlap – so quick to trace,” the team reported on Tuesday.

No further details were given concerning what caused the failure, but the team is confident they will be able to run tomorrow for the final day of testing at Jerez.

“We can replace those components ahead of running tomorrow.”

Formula One Test at Jerez: Live Tweets, Times, Results

Formula One will test at the Jerez circuit February 1st through 4th.
Photo: Circus F1

Formula One will have its first official test of 2015 at the Jerez circuit in Spain February 1st through 4th. Eight teams are set to attend the testing sessions with Force India, Marussia, and Caterham being the three teams that will not be there. 

Follow along below with live tweets, results, and more from the four days of testing at Jerez: 

Day Four

Testing starts at 2:00 a.m. EST on Wednesday, February 4th. 

Lewis Hamilton, Daniil Kvyat, Felipe Massa, Kimi Raikkonen, Jenson Button, Max Verstappen, Romain Grosjean, Marcus Ericsson. 

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Valtteri Bottas’ 2014 Season Improvement is Underrated

William’s driver Valtteri Bottas.  Source: Gallery Hip

Williams Martini Racing driver Valtteri Bottas finished the 2013 Formula One season in 17th place in the driver’s championship, just one spot above his teammate Pastor Maldonado. Certainly not a terrible outing for a rookie in the series. But 2014 was a different story for the Finn, paired with ex-Ferrari driver Felipe Massa, Bottas finished in the top five of the points standings and came close to clinching a race win for Williams on several occasions. 

In the first five races of the 2014 season, Bottas had consecutive top ten finishes with the highest being fifth place in both Australia and Spain.  His 13 year-F1 veteran teammate had finishes of 20, 7, 7, 15, and 13 in those same five races, with Australia being a DNF due to a first lap crash.  Bottas has his lone DNF of the year in the next race, Monte Carlo, due to an engine failure on lap 56.  

After the disappointing setback in Monaco, Bottas really set himself apart from the “rest of the pack” and established himself as a firm competitor with the Mercedes duo of Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton.  The remaining 13 races on the calendar saw top ten finishes in all but Singapore (13th place finish) for Bottas, eight of those being top five performances. In 2013,  Valtteri Bottas had one top ten finish all year which came in the form of a P8 performance in Austin, Texas.  

The end of the year tally saw Bottas put up some impressive stats:  

  • Average start of 6.2
  • Average finish of 6.1
  • 6 podium finishes
  • 98% of the total laps run completed
Along with natural improvement, much of his success can be attributed to Williams’ 2014 chassis design and overall performance.  In 2014, the only mechanical failure came in Monte Carlo with an engine failure, making Williams one of the most reliable teams in the sport.  Only Force India and McLaren had just as impressive reliability, with one mechanical failure for each.   

Even with such an incredible second year in the sport, Bottas isn’t satisfied with his performance just yet, telling reporters he is “expecting a lot from next year.”  Williams have already announced prior to the 2014 season ending that both Felipe Massa and Valtteri Bottas will drive for them in 2015.  Bottas shared that the team has “made some very impressive gains this season”, and that he’s confident the team is “moving in the right direction and can continue to be competitive.”

Bottas is just 25 years old, making him one of the younger drivers on the grid, and has all the signs of a long, successful career in front of him.  The large improvement from last year is a good sign of things to come for Bottas.  With Williams Racing regaining some of their historical success in recent years, the team is a good fit for a championship contending Bottas.  2014 was an inspiring year for the young Finn, and he’ll be looking to build on that and take another shot at the title next year.  

Lewis Hamilton Wins the 2014 Formula One Driver’s Championship

Mercedes AMG Petronas driver Lewis Hamilton has won the 2014 Formula One Driver’s Championship.  

Hamilton finished off the season with a win at the Abu Dhabi grand prix to clinch the championship from teammate Nico Rosberg who he has been battling with all year long. Rosberg took the early championship lead in Melbourne, Australia.  

This championship is Hamilton’s second, his first came in 2008, and he called today’s event “the greatest race of my life.”  And it certainly was, taking over first place as soon as the lights went out, Rosberg never to regain the lead again. 

The Englishman did have some help from his teammate, though, when he suffered a technical failure with the ERS system, causing him to lose engine power and all but end his hopes of a championship.  After that, it was a relatively easy drive for Hamilton to the finish, with no other drivers having a shot at the title, he just had to get the car home. 

Lewis Hamilton did that in spades, winning the contest after a late race challenge by Williams driver Felipe Massa, who finished the race in second.

Valtteri Bottas completed a successful Williams weekend by finishing in third place.

// This year’s championship has been a back and forth battle dominated by the Mercedes drivers Hamilton and Rosberg.  After taking control of the title in Singapore, Lewis Hamilton put together a string of successful results to set him up for his second World Driver’s Championship in Abu Dhabi.

“2008 was a great year in my life. The feeling I have now is way, way past that. The greatest feeling ever.”

Abu Dhabi Grand Prix: Live Blog, Stats, Analysis

Stay tuned for live tweets, stats, analysis, and more throughout the 2014 Formula One season finale at Abu Dhabi.  

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Post Race

Lewis Hamilton has Won the 2014 F1 Driver’s Championship!

Lap 55: Hamilton wins the race and wins the 2014 Formula 1 Driver’s Championship! 

Lap 54: Rosberg is told to box, but Rosberg refuses and says he will stay out to the end. Hamilton laps him but no fight is given.  Massa won’t have time to catch Hamilton.  

Lap 53: 3.5 second gap to P2, three laps to go.  Massa is running out of time to make a move now.  Rosberg’s race is just getting worse with each passing lap, down to 13th.  

Lap 52: Both Williams’, Ferrari’s, Force India’s, and Red Bull’s are in the top ten.  

Lap 51: 4.8 second gap to second place now, four laps to go.  Rosberg is going extremely slow now, losing more positions.  

Lap 50: Rosberg gets passed by Vettel and drops to P9.  

Lap 49: 6.5 second gap now from Massa to Hamilton.  The Brazilian will need to leap nearly a second faster every lap to have a shot at the race win. Hamilton probably won’t put up too much of a fight if he gets there.   

Lap 48: Ricciardo into the pits, moving Bottas up to P3 and putting both of the Williams drivers onto the provisional podium.  

Lap 47: Both of the Force India’s are now in the points, and Perez (P10) is pushing Alonso now for another place.  Vettel comes in for the mandatory supersoft tires and rejoins in P10. Gap from Hamilton to Massa down to eight seconds now.  Another fastest lap with eight to go. 

Lap 46: Both Red Bull’s still have to pit, and Massa sets a blistering 1:45.3, another new fastest lap.  The gap is down to 9.5 seconds.  Nine to go.  

Lap 45: Kobayashi is out of the race, while Perez overtakes Raikkonen.  Current running order is Hamilton, Massa, Ricciardo, Bottas, then Vettel. 

Lap 44: Massa heads into the pits for supersofts and rejoins in P2, behind Hamilton by 11 seconds.  But Hamilton sets another fastest lap, a 1:45.9 this time by. 

Lap 43: 12 laps to go, Hamilton puts in a 1:46.1, the fastest lap of the race.  Hamilton gets the gap down to 12.5 seconds now, looking to go for the race win.  

Lap 42: Rosberg is reporting more problems with the car, just looking to get it to the end of the race now.  Meanwhile, Perez is battling with Vettel, defending for P5.  

Lap 40/41: 

Massa is Going for his First Win this Year.

Lap 38/39: Massa still holds the lead of the race and has gotten a 15 second gap to Hamilton.  Hamilton radios in “I’m not racing Massa,” the Brazilian could be racing for his first win this year.  

Lap 37: Massa and Ricciardo still have not pit this stint, currently running first and third, respectively.  The Aussie just out in the fastest lap of the race as he tries to reel in the 24 second gap to Hamilton.  

Lap 35/36: Rosberg is in the pits and comes out in P7, right in front of Sebastien Vettel. Bottas too comes into the pits and rejoins in P4, just behind Ricciardo.  

Lap 34: The Ferrari’s are still scraping around for the points paying positions down at P10.  Ricciardo is having a fantastic drive after starting from the pits, closing down on Rosberg lap after lap.  

Lap 33: Raikkonen is pressuring Alonos for P10, looking to beat is teammate before Alonso leaves next season.  Bottas overtakes Rosberg, making the current top three Massa, Hamilton, and Bottas.  

Lap 32: Hamilton into the pits with another 2.7 second stop.  Rosberg overtakes him with the jump but Hamilton quickly takes back the place, no fight from the German.  Bottas is 2.7 seconds out from Rosberg and is coming up fast, Williams have the possibility of a two driver podium this race.  

Lap 31: Massa has the gap to Hamilton down to eight seconds.  Bottas is working on Rosberg and is six seconds out from him.  

Lap 30: 

Maldonado’s Burning Lotus. 

Lap 29: Current top ten: HAM MAS ROS BOT PER RIC HUL VER VET BUT

Lap 28: Fire from Maldonado’s car, he is out of the race.  Hamilton has backed off the pace by nearly a second a lap, presumably on purpose in order to protect his engine.  

Lap 27: Rosberg is clearly frustrated over the radio, with nothing he can do now in the car, as Felipe Massa blows by him for P2.  Bottas is in P4 who will be on the back of Rosberg soon enough if the problem is not fixed.  

Lap 26: Massa reels Rosberg in and the gap is down to less than second to him.  Hamilton is driving away with the gap now up to 13 seconds.  

Lap 25: Bottas flies past Ricciardo for P4, his teammate, Massa, is up next, but there is an 18 second gap to him.  Rosberg reports he is “losing engine power”, which could put an end to Rosberg’s championship hopes, sliding out to a nine second gap back from Hamilton.  His team is reporting a ERS problem.  

Lap 24: Rosberg locks up his tires and loses around two seconds to Hamilton, not what he needed while trying to conserve tires.  

Lap 22/23: Magnussen and Vettel both come into the pits on the same lap and go out with Magnussen leading.  The sun is starting to set in Abu Dhabi and the lights come to life; 2.7 second gap still holding for Rosberg and Hamilton.  

Lap 20/21: Rosberg gap to Hamilton is stable around 2.4 seconds, the former is trying to balance maintaining a gap with conserving his tires.  Ricciardo is up to fourth after starting from pit lane; Vettel is in P7 behind Magnussen who still hasn’t pit.  

Lap 18/19: 

Lap Race Chart.

Lap 17: Rosberg’s team radios him to try and keep a manageable gap to Hamilton, they’ll try to outlast him on this stint.  

Lap 16: Kvyat pulls off on the first turn, local yellow out as his race is done for.  

Lap 15: Rosberg is struggling to close any gap to Hamilton as of now, Massa is hanging another 2.5 seconds behind Rosberg.  

Lap 14: Massa into the pits for a 2.9 second stop.  Rosberg sets the fastest lap of the grand prix in an attempt to break down that 2.3 second barrier.  Five cars, Bottas, Magnussen, Vettel, Button, and Alonso are in a battle for P7, within three seconds of each other.  

Lap 12/13: Massa is currently race leader due to not pitting yet, but a good drive for him so far none the less.  Both of the Force India’s are in the top five, running fourth and fifth.  

Lap 11: Race leader Hamilton is in and out of the pits with a 2.7 second stop.  Rosberg is told to turn it up and pits as well.  2.6 second stop for Rosberg, but he is jumped by Hamilton again.  Back up to a roughly two second gap. 

Lap 9/10: 

Lotus into the pits.

Lap 8: Perez and Vergne are scrapping about for P6.  They’re within a second of each other too.  Just behind them Vettel is pressuring Magnussen for P9, but he the German has yet to pit this race.  

Lap 7: Button, Raikkonen, and Kvyat into the pits.  Hamilton has pulled out a 1.7 second lead on Rosberg now.  Massa, Bottas, and Hulkenberg round out the top five.  

Lap 6: Bottas has moved up to six after passing Raikkonen, but he has reported graining on his supersoft tires.  

Lap 4/5: Drivers have sorted out the opening lap scramble for positions, and are running pretty clean.  Current leaders are Hamilton, Rosberg, and Massa.  

Lap 3: DRS enabled.  Ricciardo and Vettel are up to 16th and 17th, respectively.  Bottas has joined the fight for fourth place, along with Alonso, Raikkonen, Button, and Kvyat.  

Lap 2: Hamilton has created a 1.2 second lead over Rosberg.  Button, Raikkonen, and Alonso all fighting for fourth, withing two seconds of each other.  

Lap 1: The lights are out!  Hamilton gets a fantastic start, takes Rosberg into the first corner. Massa into P3 behind the leaders, while his teammate, Bottas, drops down to P8 behind Kvyat.

Lap 0: The race is about to begin!  Cars out for the formation lap now. ROS-HAM front row, the 12th lockout for Mercedes this year.

Pre Race