MOTORSPORT /// F1 /// 2014 GRAND PRIX OF SINGAPORE (19.9.2014 – 21.9.2014) /// UNWANTED COMMENTARY: SHALL WE DO THIS LIVE?…

  • Good morning.
  • So…
  • …Qualifying commentary didn’t happen.
  • …Honestly, I was up, but rolled back over and went back to sleep.
  • …At (about) five hours, this is the most I’ve slept at one time in months.
  • …So…
  • …Also, no, you are not missing something.
  • …I’ve not posted “Cheat Sheet” or “Starting Grid” doodles.
  • …I’ve not even doodled them.
  • …I will.
  • …They’ll be there for continuity and reference.
  • …So, that’s the “what is going on (here)?” site update.
  • …No excuses, just some explanations on a few blips.
  • …With full responsibility for my irresponsibility taken.
  • Anyway…
  • …This is the Singapore Grand Prix.
  • …The only 100% night race.
  • …As Abu Dhabi and (now) Bahrain are at sunset.
  • …It is approaching 8pm in the city state of Singapore.
  • …And, it is a steamy 86 degrees (Fahrenheit).
  • …Add in 100 billion degrees or so on track.
  • Marina Bay Street Circuit…
  • …5.065km (3.14mi) in length.
  • …61 laps.
  • …Bringing the total distance to 308.828km (191.907mi).
  • …To those lucky enough to finish.
  • …Not, you know, passing out from the heat.
  • …Looking at the Nordics, there.
  • …It is run counterclockwise.
  • …Yes, COUNTERclockwise.
  • …And, because it is a street circuit, wiggle room is rare.
  • …In fact, passing room is a luxury around the 23 turns.
  • 2013…
  • …Red Bull’s Vettel won.
  • …In a sparkly helmet.
  • …Ferrari’s Alonso took second.
  • …And, Vettel’s BFF, Kimi Räikkönen took third for Lotus.
  • Qualifying…
  • …Mercedes Hamilton took pole.
  • …Followed teammate Rosberg.
  • …And the Red Bull duo of Ricciardo and Vettel.
  • Before we’ve even started…
  • …Rosberg’s Mercedes is being lugged back to the pits.
  • …And, Kobayashi’s Caterham is, um, on fire.
  • …He will not be starting the race.
  • …Clearly.
  • Here we go!
  • …It’s a Red Bulls on the remaining Mercedes!
  • …Alonso zips into the action from his starting fifth.
  • …Some very close action on a very narrow non-track.
  • Rosberg has left the pits.
  • …However, a radio transmission reported that his wheel is (only) showing gear shifts.
  • …So, he’s running blind.
  • …As his onboard shows him fighting to catch…
  • …Marussia’s Chilton.
  • …Who pulled away from him.
  • …That’s not right.
  • …With all due respect to Chilton.
  • …It’s just, you know, Marussias aren’t working with much power.
  • Okay…
  • …It is just a flurry of radio transmissions.
  • …And, remember, the only transmissions allowed from this race on are car-related.
  • …Driver coaching is banned.
  • …So, that is why the flurry of transmissions is a little unnerving.
  • …Red Bull has given Ricciardo a head’s up on brake overheating.
  • …Both Indias are discussing concerns.
  • …And, Mercedes is discussing pit stops with Rosberg.
  • …Whose car is (clearly) not working properly.
  • Once again, McLaren’s Magnussen is under investigation.
  • …This time, for putting all four wheels off track.
  • …Not forcing people off track.
  • …As has been the case over the last two rounds.
  • …This follows his strong start, battling teammate Button at the start.
  • …They better check to make sure the poor guy is alive.
  • …He’s Danish.
  • …Very Danish.
  • …Blonde, blue-eyed, ultra-fair, looked like a corpse after Qualifying Nordic.
  • Rosberg (finally) passed Chilton.
  • …His eyes are on Caterham’s Ericsson (now).
  • …Ericsson is a rookie, with no points, in a Caterham.
  • …Who started in the final grid spot.
  • …I’ll continue to bring up that he came in 11th at the very tricky Monaco, however.
  • …11th means just missing a point.
  • …Which would have been Caterham’s first.
  • …But, the fact remains that Rosberg is leading the Drivers’ Championship in a Constructors’ Championship-leading car.
  • …He should not be watching Caterhams and Marussias ahead of him.
  • …Much less, pulling away from him.
  • Um…
  • …Rosberg’s rear light is flashing.
  • …You know, the ones you see in the rain?
  • …And, that’s (about) it?
  • …It’s flashing.
  • …At this point, I guess it should be taken as a hazard light.
  • …Slow-moving vehicle.
  • …Radio transmissions are not indicative of planned retirement.
  • …But, how long can he go on like this?
  • The places are changing as everyone makes their first stop.
  • …The tires for this round are soft and super soft.
  • …For when things get snuggly.
  • …If you were wondering.
  • …I don’t give tires much time.
  • …So, there you go.
  • Holy crap…
  • …Okay, these Mercedes-Rosberg transmissions are horrifying.
  • …Mercedes is giving him very specific instructions on what to do when he brings the car in.
  • …He has to stall it, etc.
  • …And, he’s yelling to see if they can hear him.
  • …Oh, my god.
  • …They’ve pitted him, changed the steering wheel, and he cannot get it into first gear.
  • …It’s not responding.
  • …It’s surrounded by mechanics, ready to let it go, and it’s not responding.
  • …Rosberg’s waving his hands in ‘no-go’.
  • …They’re retiring him.
  • …Complete mechanical disaster.
  • …Car in, driver out.
  • …Rosberg, still in his helmet.
  • …Wolff, arm around him, talking to him.
  • …It’s looking like they might try to get it back out.
  • …Confirmed.
  • …They’re running around, trying to come up with something.
  • …Shot of Rosberg, with his wife, Vivian.
  • …Oh!  She got a smile out of him!
  • …You go, girl!
  • …The two were childhood friends, dated forever, and just got married a few months ago.
  • …One of my favorite WaGs.
  • …Quiet, shy, she seems just very sweet – and stylish in a very low-key, understated way.
  • …So, there’s the bonus for all this.
  • …Some cute time with the Rosbergs.
  • With all that, it is (only) Lap 19…
  • …Hamilton leads.
  • …Vettel, Alonso, and Ricciardo follow.
  • Shot of Sauber’s Gutierrez, in the garage.
  • …Putting his cap on.
  • …And, he is pissed.
  • …Throwing and kicking things.
  • …So, -that- is a retirement.
  • Chilton pulls into the pits.
  • …And, they can’t get the front jacked up.
  • …They get it.
  • …A long stop, but he’s on his merry way.
  • You know who’s not enjoying this track?
  • …Williams.
  • …They were buried through the practice sessions.
  • …Massa qualified sixth.
  • …Bottas qualified eighth.
  • …They are (currently) running in fifth and seventh (respectively).
  • …Just a blip in their very exciting year.
  • …But, a shame to see.
  • …After a disastrous 2013, they’re running in Constructors’ Championship third.
  • …Just ahead of Ferrari.
  • …Alonso is in third and Kimi is between the Williams boys at the moment.
  • …For the curious.
  • …That championship race is far from over.
  • …AND…
  • …Bottas leads Alonso (in Drivers’ third) by one point.
  • …The gap between Williams and Ferrari is 15 points.
  • …I do believe.
  • As we watch Lotus’ Maldonado leave the pits with some equipment (still) attached.
  • …Some interesting stops on this lovely evening.
  • …As Vettel makes a clean, 2.6-second stop.
  • …Well, in my face, then.
  • Transmission between Alonso and Ferrari…
  • …I’m not entirely sure that was legal.
  • …It was an update on where Ricciardo is.
  • …I’m very sure I read that updates on other drivers were barred.
  • …But, hey, I don’t trust myself and have no reason to believe I didn’t get that wrong.
  • …Also, I think there will be a bit of transition time.
  • …Getting used to the new rules and (of course) testing the boundaries and all.
  • Radio from Magnussen.
  • …I’m sure that was something about “misfiring”.
  • …Though, it could have been, “I’m dying”.
  • …Guess we’ll just have to wait and see on that one.
  • Now seems like a good enough time to remember that Singapore ALWAYS has (at least) one safety car.
  • …Usually later in the race.
  • …Under the explosive combination of late hours, exhaustion, and pressure.
  • At Lap 30…
  • …It’s Hamilton, Alonso, Vettel, and Ricciardo on top.
  • …Button is in fifth.
  • …With Massa, right on him.
  • …Kimi is in seventh.
  • …Kimi is (always) in seventh.
  • …Has anyone (else) noticed this?
  • …Just because you’re number seven, it doesn’t mean you have to be seven.
  • …By the way, I can’t do “seven” without thinking ‘Coneheads’.
  • …”Seeehhh-veeehhhn(?)”
  • Oh!  Force India’s Perez has lost his entire front wing!
  • …Well, that’s just weird looking.
  • …And, not safe.
  • …There’s debris everywhere.
  • …Sharp, sharp debris.
  • …Because, this race needs more obstacles.
  • …Contact with Sauber’s Sutil.
  • Safety Car out.
  • …So, there you go.
  • …Lap 32.
  • …Just past the midway point.
  • Holy crap!
  • …Why are the marshals just picking the debris up?!
  • …There’s a lot out there.
  • …They need some brooms and/or blowers for that.
  • …This is either going to take a lifetime or not be effective at all.
  • Teams are using this time to toss in stops.
  • …In that time, Vettel and Ricciardo have overtaken Alonso for second and third.
  • Magnussen laps behind the Safety Car with his hands out for air.
  • …This poor guy is not handling Singapore well.
  • …Everything in the car is burning him.
  • …Everything hurts.
  • …Even trying to drink hurts.
  • …(Maybe) that transmission -was- “I’m dying”, after all.
  • …Poor guy.
  • …He is running in 10th (at the moment), by the way.
  • At Lap 36…
  • …The Safety Car is (still) out.
  • …F1 races have to finish within two hours.
  • …There are 61 laps in this race.
  • …This could get very interesting.
  • …(As opposed to…?)
  • Force India transmission to Perez…
  • …5-second stop/go penalty for Sutil.
  • …Shot of Sutil’s longtime girlfriend, Jennifer Becks, in the Sauber garage.
  • …If you want great facial reactions, go to Jennifer.
  • …She tells it like it is.
  • …She may be my favorite of the WaGs.
  • …Either her, or Valtteri Bottas’ girlfriend, (Olympic swimmer) Emilia Pikkarainen.
  • …They’re just a lot of fun, sweet and silly.
  • …As humans, not as “accessories”.
  • …The kind of girls you’d hang out with.
  • …Okay, well, I would hang out with.
  • …If I hung out with anyone.
  • …I’m extremely socially anxious, flaky, and come off as icy.
  • And, with that unnecessary insight…
  • …Back to your home, Safety Car.
  • …Lap 39 and the race is back on.
  • More adventures with Magnussen.
  • …I’m trying to remember…
  • …Wasn’t it Magnussen’s McLaren that had extreme heat issues earlier this season?
  • …The heat from the power unit was going into the seat and such.
  • Are you kidding me?
  • …That was a shot of Sutil’s car in the Sauber garage.
  • …In other words, a double-retirement for Sauber.
  • …Can Sutil catch a break this season?
  • …Just one break?
  • …Is that so impossible?
  • …This is an incredibly talented driver, stuck in a wreck of a car.
  • …(Sorry Sauber, but you know it’s true.)
  • …As Adrian meets Jennifer and starts removing racing gear, it’s clear that his race is over.
  • …Here’s the thing about WaGs…
  • …For one thing, there’s major history.
  • …These girls used to be the time keepers…
  • Hold on…
  • …Oh, my god…
  • …Toro Rosso’s Kvyat is screaming over the radio that he needs to stop.
  • …Right now.
  • …He needs a drink.
  • …”I’m dying”.
  • …No, really, the dehydration situation -is- that serious.
  • …To the point of panicked screaming.
  • …Wow.
  • …Well, I hope he’s okay and has been able to get what he needs.
  • …And, that his hamster bottle isn’t flaming-hot.
  • …Like Magnussen’s.
  • …Yeah, you read that correctly.
  • …On top of everything, Magnussen’s water and water tube are too hot.
  • …Nice.
  • So, back to WaGs…
  • …And, why it’s a term of endearment.
  • …Yes, they used to be the time keepers, logging lap times in books and so on.
  • …Through the first few decades of F1, actually.
  • …They were (always) with their drivers because they were, essentially, a critical part of the team.
  • …Nowadays, while they’re not needed for record-keeping, they remain the ones who pick up where the teams leave off.
  • …They are the mental coaches, they are the ones who listen and talk through issues drivers might not think are worth bringing up to their team, and so on.
  • …And, if you think it’s annoying, seeing them in the garages all the time, just remember that, if they weren’t, they wouldn’t see much of these guys at all.
  • …The F1 schedule is nonstop.
  • …The work doesn’t begin and end at events.
  • …There is simulator work, there are sponsor events, it’s constant travel, meetings, so on and so forth.
  • …Plus, they take the opportunity to dress up (knowing they’ll be photographed and on TV).
  • …Which, whether it’s a nice dress or relaxed team wear, is just fun.
  • …So, there you have it.
  • …The abridged argument for why WaGs are rad.
  • Now, back to the race.
  • …At Lap 52…
  • …Hamilton, Vettel, Ricciardo, and Alonso lead.
  • …Hamilton is radioing serious tire issues.
  • …He’s just radioed that he’s worried that his rears could (actually) explode.
  • …Okay, they’re pitting him.
  • …2.9 stop for the leader.
  • …Hamilton exits behind Vettel.
  • …Vettel takes the lead.
  • …Ricciardo applies pressure from behind.
  • …The Red Bull mechanics are preparing for a stop.
  • …But, for who?
  • After many concerned calls, Button is stopped on track.
  • …Just, dead.
  • …Yellow flag.
  • …(So, the action continues.)
  • Stewards investigating Vergne for a track limit violation.
  • …Which, on replay, looks pretty clear.
  • …Another setback for the Frenchman.
  • …Who is in the market for a 2015 seat, after the announcement that he would be replaced by Toro Rosso next year.
  • …Another talent who can’t catch a break.
  • SLAPS!!!
  • …5 laps to go!
  • …But…
  • …We’re approaching the two-hour limit.
  • …Like, by minutes.
  • Hamilton -has- reclaimed first (from Vettel), by the way.
  • …This would have been the reigning four-time World Champion’s first win of the season.
  • …In that struggling car.
  • …But, it’s not over yet.
  • If you’re wondering…
  • …Kimi is (still) in seventh.
  • …All that action, and he’s (still) in seventh.
  • Three laps remain…
  • …Hamilton, Vettel, Ricciardo, and Alonso lead.
  • …Massa is in fifth.
  • …With (teammate) Bottas in sixth.
  • Five-second penalty for Vergne.
  • …And, he’s just skidded into Kimi’s path.
  • …Distracted driving.
  • …But, he’s skidded into sixth.
  • …Bottas goes to seventh.
  • …Kimi to eighth.
  • …Vergne is driving angry!
  • …Go-go-go!!!
  • The race countdown has gone from laps to a time countdown.
  • …This is what happens when you hit that two-hour mark.
  • …Half a minute left.
  • Perez gets sick of fighting his teammate (The Incredible Hülkenberg).
  • …And, he joins Vergne in the angry party.
  • …Shooting past Kimi.
  • Bottas gets a flat!
  • …That Williams is wiggling to the finish.
  • …And, right out of the points.
  • Time is up.
  • …Hamilton takes his seventh win of 2014.
  • …Vettel takes second.
  • …His best result of the season.
  • …Ricciardo joins his teammate on the podium (in third).
  • …Alonso takes fourth.
  • …Massa rounds out the top five.
  • …From there, it’s Vergne, Perez, Kimi, Mr Incredible, and Magnussen in the points.
  • …Bottas fell to 11th in that (literal) last minute blow.
  • Usually, driver weigh-in wouldn’t be so interesting.
  • …But, weigh-in at Singapore is time to see what’s left.
  • …Could someone carry Magnussen and Kvyat over and just drop them on the scale?
  • Podium time.
  • …Hats off, not out of respect for the anthems, but so Hamilton and Ricciardo can show you how humid it is.
  • …It’s either humid or we’ve time travelled to the 1970s.
  • Despite it being after 10pm (in Singapore), the temperature has (only) gone down two degrees in those two hours.
  • …With the temperature going up 5000 degrees in Magnussen’s car, alone.
  • Man, oh, man has this race changed the Drivers’ Championship standings.
  • …Hamilton has overtaken Rosberg for the lead.
  • …Bottas drops not one, but two spots.
  • …The end result being Alonso in fourth, Vettel in fifth, and Bottas in sixth.
  • Eddie Jordan will be handling the podium interviews.
  • …Last time, he stopped everything and shamed the crowd for booing Rosberg.
  • …Which was hilarious, shocking, and all-around awesome.
  • …He (basically) told everyone to shut up.
  • Wow…
  • …So, there’s all this talk about this being a bit of a home race for Ricciardo.
  • …He’s just said that the distance between his hometown of Perth and Singapore is (about) the same distance as Perth and Melbourne (home of the Australian Grand Prix).
  • …Which makes sense to me, as the distance between where I am and the Canadian GP is the same as the USGP.
  • …Which makes sense to all the American drivers, who consider all the American races to be home-enough.
  • …(Again, America is a continent, North and South America are subcontinents.  The American drivers are Mexico’s Perez and Gutierrez, Brazil’s Massa, and Venezuela’s Maldonado.  We’re all alone over here, in the wild Western Hemisphere.)
  • Well, that’s that.
  • …For Singapore.
  • …For me.
  • …For the day.
  • Next weekend is an off weekend.
  • The following weekend, however…
  • …It’s the beginning of the end.
  • …(Only) five races left of the 2014 season.
  • …Starting with the wild and wacky Japanese Grand Prix.
  • …With its crazy-eight track configuration.
  • …Oh, my god…
  • …If you’ve been reading my babbling over the past few years, you’ll know how much I love Suzuka.
  • …And, hate, hate, hate that it’s (always) the same weekend as the WRC’s Rallye de France-Alsace.
  • …Which, yep, once again, it will be.
  • …And, that I (always) end up missing part of it because of work or the channel going out or something.
  • …As Gilda Radner’s Roseanne Roseannadanna would say…
  • …”It’s always something”.
  • …But, it’s (always) amazing.
  • …So, I cannot recommend catching it enough.
  • …Though, just a word of warning, it will be broadcast in those fuzzy late night/early morning hours.
  • …So, prepare accordingly.
  • …But, do try to catch it however you can.
  • …On top of the excitement of the race, itself, the Championship standings are so close as this season winds down.
  • …And, you have to remember that everyone is going to want gaps that many of them just do not have at this point, to prepare for the season finale’s double points.
  • …Holy Abu Dhabi D’oh, Batman!
  • …Really, look at the standings.
  • …Then, look at them (again).
  • …All the way down.
  • …In all the excitement at the top, did you notice that Force India jumped ahead of McLaren (by six points)?
  • …Or, that Mr Incredible has tied Button and Perez has tied Kimi?
  • …(Only) two points separate Vettel and Bottas.
  • …So, if you’re the least bit interested in F1, do tune in for these final five.
  • Okay…
  • …On that note, let’s call it a day.
  • …The countdown to Singapore starts now.
  • …(One year.  Just so there’s no confusion.)
  • …Let’s do this (again) for Japan.
  • …(Fingers crossed, though breath not held.)
  • …Have a lovely rest of your day and don’t forget your WaG love!
  • …I am going to continue trying to learn how to allow myself to sleep and let things go.
  • …(Expect result update delays.)
  • …(Do not expect me to succeed in learning anything anytime soon.)
  • …(Welcome to ‘Cookies & Gold Stars’ – your exits are here, here, here, and here.)
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