What is it with all these publications which cannot write a news story without the words “RubbishF1.com has learned…” at the start or tiresome claims of exclusives that are so obviously not exclusive? I just don’t get it. Do they think that the audience has such a short attention span that they have forgotten the website they are reading before they start reading the new stories? You cannot really call it advertising because the people are there reading the story and don’t need to be lured. Is it some bizarre form of publication masturbation, that makes them feel better about themselves? Anyway, it’s decidedly odd…
The last of the F1 seats for 2016 has now been filled and the full driver line-up for the season is now known. Here is the list. One presumes that the FIA will eventually put out some official list. By the way, we’d like to know the official chassis name of Scuderia Toro Rosso – is it Toro Rosso or is it STR?
Mercedes AMG Petronas: Lewis Hamilton, Nico Rosberg
Scuderia Ferrari: Sebastian Vettel, Kimi Raikkonen
Williams-Mercedes: Valtteri Bottas, Felipe Massa
Red Bull-TAG Heuer: Daniil Kvyat, Daniel Ricciardo
Force India-Mercedes: Sergio Perez, Nico Hulkenberg
Renault: Kevin Magnussen, Jolyon Palmer®
Toro Rosso-Ferrari: Max Verstappen, Carlos Sainz Jr
Sauber-Ferrari: Felipe Nasr, Marcus Ericsson
McLaren-Honda: Fernando Alonso, Jenson Button
Manor-Mercedes: Pascal Wehrlein®, Rio Haryanto®
Haas-Ferrari: Romain Grosjean, Esteban Gutierrez
The ® sign indicates a rookie driver.
Incidentally, someone sent me an interesting list of the FIA super licence points system qualifications, which I suspect was “borrowed” from f1fanatic.co.uk.
The new system is officially introduced this year, which means that points achieved up to now do not matter. As you will see later in this article, that is fortunate for a number of drivers racing in F1 this season.
In order to get a super licence you need 40 points, collected from various different championships (based on the FIA’s weighting system). Under the new system there would be no superlicences for Max Verstappen (27 points), Daniil Kyat (30 points), Carlos Sainz Jr (35 points) nor Kevin Magnussen (35). Will Stevens (22) and Roberto Merhi (20) would also miss out. It is ironic that the least qualified of the new boys is Pascal Wehrlein with just 16 super licence points in the bag, while Rio Haryanto has 20. The only new boy who is properly qualified is Jolyon Palmer with 46 points. The ousted Alexander Rossi would also have qualified with 43 points to his name. It is worth noting that f1fanatic.co.uk has worked out that the most qualified driver in super licence points terms is André Lotterer with a stonking total of 140 points, ahead of Stoffel Vandoorne (105) and IndyCar Champion Scott Dixon (100).
PS: There must be some kind of prize for getting the word “masturbation” into a motor racing news story.