Supporting fans of Valtteri Bottas have been left disappointed after Lewis Hamilton captured pole position at the Portuguese Grand Prix, which is being hosted at Algarve Circuit. Nobody was anticipating that Hamilton would acquire pole after Bottas sustained three back-to-back first positions during free practice. That doesn’t mean Valtteri Bottas doesn’t have ample opportunity to acquire 1st Place during the Portuguese Grand Prix. It could be 2nd position during qualifying is superior for Algarve Circuit’s race start. Nobody will know until the lights go black.
Qualifying for Algarve Circuit saw considerable excitement for most teams. Max Verstappen from Red Bull Aston Martin Racing acquired P3, with Charles Leclerc from Scuderi Ferrari obtaining P4. Portuguese fans of Scuderia Ferrari were thrilled to witness Leclerc reach P4 in qualifying. It marks the highest qualifying position for Ferrari in 2020, with the team having struggled drastically to obtain track positions & pace this year.
Valtteri Bottas proved himself a viable opponent for Lewis Hamilton during the Portuguese Grand Prix Qualifying Session. Hamilton was able to overcome Bottas by 0.087s of a second. It’s the closest times the pair have maintained since becoming rivals in 2018. What angered Bottas was not receiving new tyres, while Hamilton did. Lewis would be released four minutes before the qualifying session ended & would find the necessary speed to obtain pole.
Mercedes AMG-Petronas wasn’t favouring Lewis Hamilton to Valtteri Bottas. Hamilton was given Medium Tyres, with Bottas provided Soft Tyres. Differences in their pace were minimal throughout the full session. Lewis Hamilton acquiring pole position over Valtteri Bottas on Medium Tyres shows the championship skillsets of the six-time world champion.
Verstappen Given Race Start Advantage
Mercedes AMG-Petronas have confirmed that Valtteri Bottas & Lewis Hamilton are both starting the Portuguese Grand Prix on Medium Tyres. This could mean a prominent advantage for Max Verstappen during the initial ten to fifteen laps at Algarve Circuit, with Red Bull Racing confirming that Verstappen is starting on Soft Tyres. When considering Charles Leclerc & his P4 placement for the race start, he’s been awarded Medium Tyres. It’ll be interesting to see which strategy is more beneficial.
An imbalance is the best term to describe Renault F1 in 2020. Though their car has improved tenfold compared to the 2019 season, differences between Renault’s contracted drivers is significant & looks to continue throughout 2021. The subject of imbalance is something that’s been discussed multiple times by Daniel Ricciardo, Renault’s primary driver. Criticism of that imbalance was evoked again after the Eifel Grand Prix at Nürburgring Circuit.
Ricciardo was questioned on the primary factor that’s enabled Renault to sustain notable progress in 2020, which shouldn’t be possible amid the FIAs regulations. Formula One’s 1st Australian driver mentioned that back-wing downforce had improved drastically, allowing for consistent strategies & placements throughout the 2020 F1 campaign. It’s still been a close Mid-Field battle between McLaren, Renault, and Racing Point. Six races are remaining in the 2020 F1 Season & six points divide these three teams from 3rd place in the Constructor’s Championship. It’s expected that McLaren will stand victorious, with Racing Point obtaining 4th, and Renault achieving 5th.
Daniel Ricciardo has managed to P6 or higher since the Belgian Grand Prix. However, the Australian doesn’t believe that Renault’s progress will continue throughout 2021 & 2022. That’d be historically correct with the team, who has struggled to maintain consistency during their Formula One lifespan. Ricciardo mentioned that during 2019, there were moments that felt Renault could achieve a Top Ten placement & those other moments, the car felt slow enough to place P11 or lower.
Renault’s improvements began during the Silverstone Grand Prix, with FIA-approved enhancements enabling for rear-downforce to increase tenfold. This boosted Ricciardo’s confidence in sustaining throttle speeds during the corners, instead of breaking to account for possible crashes. Daniel Ricciardo stated that throughout the 2020 campaign, Renault would continue to perform adequately to their rivals of Racing Point & McLaren.
Poor Drivers = Poor Performance
Outside of the Renault team, F1 Analysts aren’t concerned about the French racing team maintaining their consistency with car performance. Worries arise when reviewing their 2021 drivers of Esteban Ocon & Fernando Alonso. Ocon is known to underperform when compared to other young drivers like Lando Norris or Charles Leclerc. Alonso is aged 39 & will become one of the older F1 Grid drivers. How Renault overcomes the challenges of maintaining underperforming drivers isn’t known.
An unexpected acquisition has occurred for the Toronto Maple Leafs. It’s been announced that Zach Bogosian will join the Leafs for the 2021-22 NHL season. This one-year acquisition contract earned the defencemen $1 Million. Zach Bogosian is a superior selection for the Toronto Maple Leafs, with his history throughout the National Hockey League sustaining eleven seasons.
Zach Bogosian’s career sustains four NHL teams, with the Toronto Maple Leaf’s being his 5th. This defenceman has competed against the Winnipeg Jets, Buffalo Sabres, the Atlanta Thrashers, and Tampa Bay Lightning. Obtaining a contract with the Tampa Bay Lightning’s was a career-goal for Zach Bogosian, which didn’t last longer than one year. His contract with Tampa Bay was worth $1.3 Million and saw minimal attendance during regular-season games. However, Zach would be allowed to appear in his 1st Stanley Gup Playoff Game in 2020. It followed after competing in 20 Postseason Games.
This defenceman has sustained an eleven-season career in the National Hockey League. His records stand at 644 career games, with 143 assists & 53 goals. Zach Bogosian is 30-years-of-age, meaning his time for NHL retirement is arriving. The Toronto Maple Leaf’s won’t be his final team but will mark the beginning of his end.
Tyson Barrie Joins the Edmonton Oilers
Zach Bogosian will replace the loss of Tyson Barrie, who played with the Toronto Maple Leafs from 2016 to 2019. Sheldon Keefe has struggled to ascertain new defencemen with similar or better skillsets. The acquisition of Bogosian means that Head Coach Keefe could’ve finally solved this problem.
Tyson Barrie spent the majority the 2019-20 NHL Season with the Toronto Maple Leaf’s. His exit came in July 2019 when being traded from Toronto to the Colorado Avalanches. It followed after Barrie’s shooting percentage dropped to 3%, with 34 assists and five goals being his lowest season. Toronto made their determination to part ways with Barrie after his performance in five back-to-back games against the Columbus Blue Jackets proved unfavourable.
Tyson Barrie is now joining the Edmonton Oilers for the 2021-20 NHL Season, with his contract being worth $3.75 Million. It’s considerably higher than the deal offered to Zach Bogosian. However, Tyson Barrie has seen a record of 80 goals & 266 assists during 554 games.
SF1000 became a stronger vehicle during the Russian Grand Prix, with Scuderia Ferrari having their Formula One vehicle perform to expectations at the Sochi Autodrom. Having reached initial goals for seasonal upgrades, Scuderia Ferrari is releasing additional enhancements during the October 9th to 11th Eifel Grand Prix at the Nürburgring. Upcoming upgrades surround the SF1000s diffuser, which follows after the Rear-Wing Endplate & Under-Nose Cape were improved. It’s also suspected that bargeboards will be upgraded at the Eifel Grand Prix.
Scuderia Ferrari has clarified that new parts aren’t meant to affect the SF1000s ultimate performance, but instead improve the correlation between operating systems in their vehicle. When questioned if Ferrari can sustain their growth, Team Principal Mattia Binotto emphasized that track characteristics at Sochi Autodrom enabled Charles Leclerc to obtain 6th position. This means that performance at the Nürburgring won’t likely be consistent with the Sochi Autodrom. However, Scuderia Ferrari has hope that Diffuser upgrades will allow all components to correlate together in harmony. It’d enable continued growth with Ferrari’s track performance.
Mattia Binotto stated that upgrades issued during the Russian Grand Prix assisted with Sochi’s track characteristics and that competitiveness was located during unexpected circumstances. Scuderi Ferrari’s Team Principal evoked that continued development of Diffuser & Read-Wing upgrades could permit Charles Leclerc or Sebastian Vettel to obtain higher positions on the grid. Mattia Binotto quickly pointed out that advancements have been a step in the right direction & that they aren’t enough to guarantee sufficiency over the remainder of 2020s F1 campaign.
The Positives & Negatives
That’s when Mattia Binotto announced additional upgrades for the Nürburgring’s Eifel Grand Prix. Ferrari’s Team Principal evoked that their enhancements aren’t significant and that all upcoming improvements focus on the Diffuser. This indicates that Ferrari Engineers have located something in the Diffuser that enables greater downforce & speeds. Overall, Mattia Binotto wasn’t disappointed with improved speeds seen with Sochi’s upgrades. It’s provided Engineers a launching point for the remainder of 2020, and insight for the 2021 F1 campaign.
Regardless of improvements, there’ll be multiple challenges awaiting Scuderia Ferrari & all other teams in Formula One until 2022. Upgrade capabilities have drastically been limited in-anticipation of new regulations coming in fifteen months.
Britain’s Parliament has increased their demands onto the Premier League on September 27th. It follows after the Premier League continued requesting government financial aid to sustain lower-division clubs. These requests angered Britain’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson, with financial assistance issued from the government during COVID-19 meant to assist civilians & not sporting associations. In response, Britain’s government has demanded that the Premier League financially assistant lower-division clubs.
The Premier League have refused these demands for weeks, with the most recent forcing EFL Executives to schedule a virtual meeting for September 29th. Discussions will be held regarding the possibility of EFL financially supporting 72 football clubs in three divisions across England.
English Football League data suggests that £200 Million will be lost amongst these 72 clubs, under the conditions that supports aren’t permitted to enter stadiums across England. Earlier in September, Prime Minister Boris Johnson allowed for supporters to return to British football stadiums in small numbers. COVID-19 cases quickly grew, with a large percentage arriving from children returning to school & bringing the virus back home.
The rise of cases forced Boris Johnson to close-off football stadiums to supporters for a 2nd time. Fears regarding COVID-19 caused the Prime Minister to announce that football fans can’t return to stadiums until the earliest of October 31st. This decision eliminates the critical component of revenue for 72 football clubs.
The Secretary Urges Caution
Great Britain’s Secretary of Culture, Oliver Dowden, spoke on the situation regarding professional football obtaining revenue from supporters. Dowden clarified that the government is continually reviewing COVID-19 cases. After infections reach low numbers, supporters will likely be permitted at 25% occupancy.
Oliver Dowden urged caution to Britain’s population, reflecting that the coronavirus works differently than any viral infection beforehand & that outbreaks will continue if entertainment services are reopened promptly. Oliver Dowden believes that the overwhelming majority of Britain’s population agreed with shutting down stadiums again and that rising cases is more concerning that enjoy professional football.
What happens next is likely the Premier League being forced to financially support the lower-bracket clubs for 2020, 2021, and potentially 2022. An official announcement won’t probably come for weeks.
The 2021 Formula One season is looking exciting for dedicated followers of the sport. Two teams are being rebranded, with Racing Point turning into “Aston Martin F1 Racing” and Renault turning into “Alpine F1 Team”. This news alone was enough to excite supporters for the upcoming season, which support a conventional schedule & timeframe. However, contract announcements regarding Sebastian Vettel have been made since September 6th. It’s been revealed that the German driver has signed a long-term contract with Aston Martin for 2021. The news has been celebrated by F1 supporters worldwide and marks a new era in the four-time champion’s career.
Details regarding Sebastian Vettel’s contract with Aston Martin have been revealed. Vettel’s role will extend beyond “Driver”, inevitably leading towards a corporate position in the team. This could mean Sebastian Vettel is becoming the Aston Martin Team Boss after his tenure as a driver. These details come after Sebastian expressed at the Mugello Grand Prix that working with Aston Martin is a long-term goal. Lawrence Stroll & Sebastian Vettel hope their cooperation will lead towards this teams inevitably front-row placements.
Sebastian Vettel is taking a notable salary decrease with Aston Martin F1 Racing. The German was previously paid €45 Million with Scuderi Ferrari. That valuation is decreasing to €15 Million for a base salary, with raises possible if contention for first row placements becomes a common scenario for Vettel. Taking a notable salary decrease has likely stressed Sebastian Vettel, enforcing a more limited lifestyle. However, Vettel expressed that payment is immeasurable in-comparison to doing what he loves.
Podium Contention for Vettel
Retired F1 drivers have supported the announcement of Sebastian moving to Aston Martin, including Ralf Schumacher. The cousin to Michael Schumacher believes that combining the speed & strengths of Sebastian Vettel with Aston Martin will account for a massive step in F1’s history. Ralf noted that this announcement benefits the podium, seasonal standings, and will likely challenge Mercedes AMG-Petronas in ways they’d never expect. The reality is nobody can anticipate how Sebastian Vettel will perform with Aston Martin F1 Racing. Supporters have to wait until the German four-time champion hits Free Practice in the opening round of 2021.
The Italian Grand Prix at Autodrom Monza de Circuit is arriving on September 6th. Free Practice for this GP has begun, with the first two sessions occurring on two-days earlier. Unfavourable results were seen for Scuderia Ferrari on the September 4th Free Practices, with Sebastian Vettel obtaining P19 and Charles Leclerc landing P11. It’s the prancing horse’s worst placement during Free Practice in 10+ years, showing the notable downfall of Scuderia Ferrari since being caught cheating in 2019.
F1 Supporters expressed their shock through social media at Sebastian Vettel’s placement, with the Scuderi Ferrari driver being a former four-time championship winner. The surprise came when learning Vettel has placed lower than Roy Nissany, a competitor from Formula Two. He was testing the Williams Car during FP1 & obtained one spot higher than Vettel at P18. However, this isn’t the fault of Germany’s 4-Time Champion. Scuderia Ferrari has failed to provide Vettel with a reliable SF1000 for the 2020 campaign, with similar problems following for Charles Leclerc. Both Ferrari drivers are experiencing common mechanical errors, prompting their low placements of P19 & P11.
Downforce failure & straight-line speed depressions at Scuderi Ferrari became evident at Monza. Williams sent Roy Nissany out on the Hard Compound Tyres, with Sebastian Vettel maintaining the Medium Compound. It shouldn’t have been challenging for Vettel to outpace Nissany on the faster tyre. However, 2020 Grand Prix’s have revealed evidence which shows that Scuderia Ferrari is losing all downforce on the straights & harbouring a high percentage of dirty air when other cars pass-by. It’s created a loophole scenario where Ferrari drivers cannot find the pace under any conditions.
Mattia Binotto to Blame
Motorsport analysts are questioning the destructive forces at work in Scuderia Ferrari. Mattia Binotto is primarily to blame for the team’s recent failures, with the Italian Leader limiting what Engineers & Drivers can accomplish with their daily tasks. Financial burdens placed onto Scuderia Ferrari would’ve forced Mattia Binotto to approach Formula One differently. However, Binotto didn’t likely anticipate Ferrari becoming the slowest team in Formula One. It seems the Williams Curse has travelled onwards to Scuderia Ferrari.
The Mercedes AMG-Petronas Team Boss has targeted Ferrari during a Belgium GP press conference. Toto Wolff evoked that Scuderia Ferrari’s performance for 2020 isn’t good enough for Formula One and that there are specific members of the Italian organization are responsible for their downfall. It’s undeniable that Scuderia Ferrari has become worse than imaginable, with teams like Alpha Tauri outpacing both Charles Leclerc & Sebastian Vettel. George Russel from Williams was +0.207 away from overtaking Vettel from P14.
The Tifosi Gang are notably disappointed with Scuderia Ferrari, with most Italian & international supporters believing that Charles Leclerc could content Lewis Hamilton for the 2020 F1 Championship. The differences between Scuderia Ferrari in 2020 & 2019 are extensive, with the Belgium Grand Prix being Leclerc’s first victory in Formula One during the 2019 Campaign. This year Charles is battling to maintain a position higher than P10.
Charles Leclerc obtaining P13 & Sebastian Vettel garnering P14 marks the lowest point in Scuderia Ferrari’s history over the last two decades. Toto Wolff was notable upset that known members amongst the F1 Paddock are purposely destroying the Ferrari F1 Team. Wolff mentioned that since the 1950s, Scuderi Ferrari has been an iconic brand in the Formula One community & should be competing regularly for podium contention. Wolff evoked that when Scuderi Ferrari performs poorly, it’s horrendous for the overall motorsport. Mercedes Team Boss would issue his sympathies towards the Tifosi Gang & employed workforces at Ferrari’s Italian facilities.
Is It Mattia Binotto?
Toto Wolff then mentioned that priorities of specific individuals in Scuderia Ferrari had changed drastically since the COVID-19 pandemic, and their lack of performance comes directly from this individual. Toto’s statements lead towards Mattia Binotto, the Team Boss of Scuderia Ferrari. Mattia is hated amongst the Tifosi Gang after Binotto replaced Maurizio Arrivabene. It appears that Binotto is purposely limiting what performance capabilities are given to Scuderia Ferrari, which follows suit with Mattia’s character since becoming Team Boss on January 7th, 2019.
If Mattia Binotto is the individual that’s purposely limiting the pace of Scuderia Ferrari, his position as Team Boss will likely be lost for the 2021 F1 Season. It’d be a highly welcomed decision amongst the Formula One paddock & Tifosi Gang.
Most had thought that when Formula One was postponed earlier this year, it wouldn’t return until 2021 following an international pandemic. Supporters were thrilled in late June to learn that multiple races were coming, including Silverstone. The British Grand Prix at Silverstone went underway on August 2nd & saw Lewis Hamilton acquiring his 7th victory at the circuit in the most unexpected way possible.
Silverstone will likely be remembered as the most exciting race for F1s 2020 Season. It all began when Nico Hulkenberg was announced to be returning with Racing Point, replacing Sergio Perez while he recovers from COVID-19. Hulkenberg would find himself unable to compete after a Power Unit Issue forced his W10 to stall.
The Silverstone problems continued & move towards Alex Albon/Romain Grosjean. Albon would make a lung towards Grosjean, bashing into his right-back tyre & forcing Romain to spin out into the gravel. Another DNF followed after Daniil Kvyat lost control of his AT-01, creating significant damage. Two safety cars were initiated because of these incidents & allowed other drivers to reach closer towards Lewis Hamilton.
The Excitement Continues
Lewis would outpace those that came close until the 52nd & Final Lap. Hamilton saw his tyres deflate and then popped towards the final corners. This followed after Valtteri Bottas had similar issues on the Hard Tyres just moments before. Bottas was allowed to pit, dropping multiple placements into 11th from 2nd.
This allowed Max Verstappen to overtake Valtteri Possible while being three seconds from passing a limping Lewis Hamilton. The British Champion wouldn’t allow for Max Verstappen to overtake, fully gassing his W11 on the final corner. He’d remark after the British Grand Prix that this was a foolish decision & his vehicle wouldn’t stop but was still thrilled to have won.
F1 Commentators were surprised by the actions of Lewis Hamilton, who’d been informed moments last not to risk his W11 & that returning the vehicle into the pits was most important. Lewis would’ve lost the race if Red Bull Aston Martin Racing hadn’t pitted Max Verstappen on the 51st Lap alongside Valtteri Bottas. However, Verstappen was still pleased with his 2nd Place Podium Finish.
The Technical Department for Scuderia Ferrari has been restructured, which follows after poor performances throughout the 2020 Formula One Season. Ferrari is typically declared into the top three teams, with Mercedes in 1st and Red Bull in 3rd. 2020 would see that change with Scuderia Ferrari slumping into the midfield. Their straight-line speeds have dropped significantly over winter break, which was prolonged & supported little technical development with the COVID-19 pandemic. Scuderia Ferrari’s headquarters is located in Italy, a nation which was severely affected by the coronavirus.
Ferrari is sustaining a 5th position in the Constructor’s Championship, losing out to the likes of McLaren Racing & Racing Point. It’s the lowest standing that Scuderia Ferrari has seen in years, which their pace difference evident after Charles Leclerc placed 11th at the Hungaroring Grand Prix. Sebastian Vettel would place 6th.
Employed personnel within the Technical Department are expected to be angered by this announcement. Mattia Binotto, the Team Principal for Scuderia Ferrari, promised on July 17th that there wouldn’t be layoffs following their poor performance. That would all change by the 20th, with Mattia Binotto announcing that their technical team will be restructured & a new performance development department is being created.
Scuderia Ferrari’s Team Principal indicated that their restructuring efforts would create a practical package that emphasis on straight-line speeds for upcoming seasons. Mattia Binotto wants management to become simplified & focused, giving leaders the tools required to finalize their objectives.
Mattia clarified who will reign over which departments. It’s known that Enrico Cardile will oversee the performance development department. He’ll also lead the Power Unit Team. Sporting Director of Trackside Activities has been awarded to Laurent Mekies, with Simon Resta holding his position for Manager of the Chassis Engineering Department.
The Long Game
Scuderia Ferrari admitted that their 2020 F1 Season is lost. Those midfield positions will continue throughout 2021, with Ferrari being forced into using the SF1000 for an additional season. Cost-Saving Strategies are being employed by Mattia Binotto, ensuring the long-term survival of Scuderia Ferrari. The Team Principal emphasized that they’re creating the foundations needed to return into a winning cycle.