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    • F1 2018 - Ferrari starts the Formula 1 season with a win - ESPN race schedule for US fans

      The 2018 Formula 1 season is officially underway and it started pretty much as everyone expected with Ferrari and Mercedes-AMG duking it out. Mercedes is the favorite and of course coming off four straight championships. Ferrari did show they just about closed performance gap last year.


      At the Australian Grand Prix Ferrari took the win despite Hamilton getting the pole position. Really it came down to Hamilton making one big mistake and he was never able to catch Sebastian Vettel.

      Beyond Ferrari and Mercedes-AMG Red Bull Racing looked strong although their young drive Max Verstappen made a critical error spinning out at one point. He recovered pretty well and finished in sixth place:


      Race highlights are here:


      Hopefully it is a competitive season and for fans in the USA Formula 1 is on ESPN which should make it accessible to a much larger American audience.

      The upcoming schedule is below:


      This article was originally published in forum thread: F1 2018 - Ferrari starts the Formula 1 season with a win - ESPN race schedule for US fans started by Sticky View original post
      Comments 23 Comments
      1. pr3ci5n335i's Avatar
        pr3ci5n335i -
        Great start to the season. Gotta love the competition between Ferrari and Mercedes. I was surprised that Hamilton couldn't pass Vettel during the last 10 laps.

        Those new safety bars are hideous! You'd think the center bar would block their vision.
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by pr3ci5n335i Click here to enlarge
        Those new safety bars are hideous! You'd think the center bar would block their vision.
        Same thing I was thinking.

        They look terrible but they have to impede performance as well.
      1. pr3ci5n335i's Avatar
        pr3ci5n335i -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
        Same thing I was thinking.

        They look terrible but they have to impede performance as well.
        I would think so, added drag along with annoyance. I feel like I would lean left and right to avoid it but maybe the drivers block it out.
      1. F16HTON's Avatar
        F16HTON -
        Seeing as Vettel set the record for fastest laps at Mellbourne...ever. Non issue.

        Looks like “party time mode” for Hamilton did not play out so well. Trump curse perhaps? Mabey because he chose to “stand for his life”? Let’s see how the rest of the season goes.
      1. BlackJetE90OC's Avatar
        BlackJetE90OC -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
        At the Australian Grand Prix Ferrari took the win despite Hamilton getting the pole position. Really it came down to Hamilton making one big mistake and he was never able to catch Sebastian Vettel.
        Umm, someone didn’t actually watch the race. Vettel was a third place car Sun. He won by pure luck, getting a virtual safety car right before he was going to pit. After the VSC, it is impossible to pass at Melbourne. The entire race was basically follow the leader, Hence Max spining out trying to pass a Haas.

        Ferrari is still .5+ sec a lap behind in pure speed, quali speed. During race Merc was running Lewis in reduced mode, because he was cruising to a victory.

        Vettel was less that 12 sec ahead of Lewis and less than 18 sec ahead of Kimi, before he was going to pit. The pitlane delta was 23 sec, he would have came out 5 sec behind Kimi. The VSC gave him a free pit stop, he gained time doing pitlane speed rather than VSC speed.
      1. Sticky2's Avatar
        Sticky2 -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by BlackJetE90OC Click here to enlarge
        Umm, someone didn’t actually watch the race. Vettel was a third place car Sun. He won by pure luck, getting a virtual safety car right before he was going to pit. After the VSC, it is impossible to pass at Melbourne. The entire race was basically follow the leader, Hence Max spining out trying to pass a Haas.

        Ferrari is still .5+ sec a lap behind in pure speed, quali speed. During race Merc was running Lewis in reduced mode, because he was cruising to a victory.

        Vettel was less that 12 sec ahead of Lewis and less than 18 sec ahead of Kimi, before he was going to pit. The pitlane delta was 23 sec, he would have came out 5 sec behind Kimi. The VSC gave him a free pit stop, he gained time doing pitlane speed rather than VSC speed.
        I actually did watch the race. Vettel pitted earlier and got ahead. Hamilton couldn't catch him and went wide giving Vettel an insurmountable lead.

        if you want to attribute it to the VSC that's fine but it remains Hamilton could not catch him.
      1. F16HTON's Avatar
        F16HTON -
        Pit lane strategy is what wins and loses races, its about 10% science and 90% luck. Vettel victorious!
      1. BlackJetE90OC's Avatar
        BlackJetE90OC -
        ? No Vettel pitted after Lewis and Kimi.

        Lewis and Kimi pitted early. Vettel ran long and caught virtual safety car and got a free pit stop.

        He won purely because of luck, he was going to finish third. He only had 11 sec on Lewis(pit stop taking 23 sec), with gap getting smaller each lap because Lewis was on fresh tires. Lewis and Kimi had already done their pit stops and was running down Vettel when VSC happened.
      1. BlackJetE90OC's Avatar
        BlackJetE90OC -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by F16HTON Click here to enlarge
        Pit lane strategy is what wins and loses races, its about 10% science and 90% luck. Vettel victorious!
        It wasn’t strategy, it was luck. It should have been a traditional safety car. Merc was cruising to a victory. Ferrari fans shouldn’t get their hopes up. They will need luck like that and/or rain every race to win a championship.

        Merc is faster this year, than last year.

        Merc/Ferrari Melbourne quali gap:
        2017 - 0.268
        2018 - 0.664


        ”Party Mode” is real. Merc is easily over that 1,000hp mark.
      1. Sticky2's Avatar
        Sticky2 -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by BlackJetE90OC Click here to enlarge
        ? No Vettel pitted after Lewis and Kimi.

        Lewis and Kimi pitted early. Vettel ran long and caught virtual safety car and got a free pit stop.

        He won purely because of luck, he was going to finish third. He only had 11 sec on Lewis(pit stop taking 23 sec), with gap getting smaller each lap because Lewis was on fresh tires. Lewis and Kimi has already done their pit stops and was running down Vettel when VSC happened.
        I thought Vettel went in first? Maybe I got it mixed up but I remember looking up and seeing Hamilton and Vettel swapped positions.

        Regardless, Vettel drove better after that and Hamilton was the one who made a costly error.
      1. BlackJetE90OC's Avatar
        BlackJetE90OC -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky2 Click here to enlarge
        I thought Vettel went in first? Maybe I got it mixed up but I remember looking up and seeing Hamilton and Vettel swapped positions.

        Regardless, Vettel drove better after that and Hamilton was the one who made a costly error.
        It is virtually impossible to pass at that track, you can’t even follow within 1.5sec without losing front aero grip. The narrow track makes it worse and the short straights at Melbourne render DRS useless. Bottas was stuck behind Ocon in 14th for 20+ laps.

        When they get to the modern tracks, that make up 80% of the schedule. It will be easier for drivers to mix it up. Max won’t have to spin out trying to keep up with a Haas.
      1. BlackJetE90OC's Avatar
        BlackJetE90OC -
        I actually have a feeling Red Bull could end up being the challenger to Merc eventually. Let’s see how this plays out. Vettel does not seem as pleased with this years car as he was last year. He was pissed off in interviews after Melbourne practice sessions.

        Vettel won Melbourne last year also, we know how the season turned out. Merc locked up championship early, Red Bull was coming on strong end of year.
      1. BLKROKT's Avatar
        BLKROKT -
        The US market ESPN coverage was about as bad as it could possibly get. F1 and their American owners are going to have a serious problem on their hands unless they fix it quickly.
      1. F16HTON's Avatar
        F16HTON -
        QFT,

        I vowed to never watch ESPN unless there was something special happening. My time zone in HI made it easy to watch quali and race. Prolly not going to watch any more on ESPN. Made a whole season without NFL and NBA do far. $#@!ty race coverage makes it even easier.
      1. BlackJetE90OC's Avatar
        BlackJetE90OC -
        Vettel admitted Ferrari was lucky to win the 2018 season opener and is not a match for Mercedes at present, describing its new car as "a bit too conscious".
      1. DavidV's Avatar
        DavidV -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by F16HTON Click here to enlarge
        Seeing as Vettel set the record for fastest laps at Mellbourne...ever. Non issue.
        ??Daniel Ricardo set the fastest laptime.Vettel only set the 4th fastest time in the race. Lewis set the fastest time in qualy.
        And it is not as if the halo is the only change in the cars this season, so that is really apples and oranges.
        Looks like “party time mode” for Hamilton did not play out so well. Trump curse perhaps? Mabey because he chose to “stand for his life”? Let’s see how the rest of the season goes.
        This may come as a surprise for you, but the rest of the world stopped caring for USA politics unless it directly concerns them. Like the trade war threat.
        So blaming a programming error in Mercedes analytical software on Trump is just so... Trumpish?
        If Lewis had known he had pushed a little more and he would have won easily.
      1. SpeedLimit?'s Avatar
        SpeedLimit? -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by F16HTON Click here to enlarge
        Seeing as Vettel set the record for fastest laps at Mellbourne...ever. Non issue.

        Looks like “party time mode” for Hamilton did not play out so well. Trump curse perhaps? Mabey because he chose to “stand for his life”? Let’s see how the rest of the season goes.
        Wolffe already explained there is no "party mode". Lewis ran on the same setting for both runs in Q3 Friday, the real difference is the driver. Vettel gets props for capitalizing on his luck and sealing the deal but we all know what driver and what car is the superior combination. I just wish F1 figured out a way to foster head to head racing in a similar fashion to MotoGP...FAR better racing imho.
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by BlackJetE90OC Click here to enlarge
        It is virtually impossible to pass at that track, you can’t even follow within 1.5sec without losing front aero grip. The narrow track makes it worse and the short straights at Melbourne render DRS useless. Bottas was stuck behind Ocon in 14th for 20+ laps.

        When they get to the modern tracks, that make up 80% of the schedule. It will be easier for drivers to mix it up. Max won’t have to spin out trying to keep up with a Haas.
        Well then what's the point? Just kind of boring.

        I didn't find it all that entertaining really. Not sure how F1 gets these huge TV deals.
      1. Sticky's Avatar
        Sticky -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by BLKROKT Click here to enlarge
        The US market ESPN coverage was about as bad as it could possibly get. F1 and their American owners are going to have a serious problem on their hands unless they fix it quickly.
        What should they do differently?
      1. BlackJetE90OC's Avatar
        BlackJetE90OC -
        Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
        What should they do differently?
        ESPN is a simulcast of Skysports F1. I believe it is an upgrade from the old farts on NBCsports. Having Nico as a guest analyst was nice, heard he signed on for a few races.

        Only thing ESPN need to do is show more of it. Why are practices on ESPN3? Why don’t they show more post quali and post race coverage?

        F1 needs to get their streaming service up, not having it ready for the season start is ridiculous.