‘Gasly undone by crashes, Albon better than Kyvat’

Red Bull chose Alexander Albon to replace Pierre Gasly because Helmut Marko feels he is “better” than Daniil Kvyat while explaining that Gasly was undone by his testing crashes.

Last week Red Bull announced that Gasly, under-fire for a lack of results, would be heading back to Toro Rosso with immediate effect.

His place at Red Bull would go to rookie racer Albon for the final nine races, giving the team the opportunity to evaluate the driver before deciding on Max Verstappen’s 2020 team-mate.

Red Bull advisor Marko played a role in making the decision and recently explained it to Japanese publication, Autosport Web.

The Austrian reckons Red Bull did not see the best of Gasly this season as the Frenchman was unable to shrug off his pre-season crashes.

Gasly twice crashed the RB15 during the Barcelona tests, not only putting Red Bull on the back foot but he was also publicly blamed for the crashes by Marko.

“Not just once, but twice,” Marko told as-web.

“Yes, his crashes had a great effect on the team’s test programs. We were short on parts, and faced issues completing our tests.”

Asked if Gasly felt responsible, Marko said: “That’s definitely true. And even after the season began he was not able to erase it.”

He added: “Pierre until this year was fast, and there was no hesitation in overtaking during the race.

“However, the original speed has not come out at all this year.”

As for the team’s decision to put Albon in the car, Marko says he has been impressed by the Thai-British driver’s performances in his debut campaign.

“I am optimistic,” he said.

“To be honest it was unexpected that he showed such a good performance in his first year.

“Moreover, he has made steady progress from race to race.

“Alex’s contract only covers the remaining nine races of this year.

“No one has yet decided who will be Max’s team-mate next year so Alex should be able to grow and race without feeling any extra pressure.”

The decision to put Albon in the car instead of Daniil Kvyat came as a surprise to many especially as the latter is the one who stood on the podium at this year’s German GP.

Marko explained: “I think Albon is better.

“We know how fast Kvyat is, we can say that he has become a more complete driver. However, based on all factors, we chose Alex.”

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‘Red Bull offered Gasly seat to Alonso at Silverstone’

Red Bull approached Fernando Alonso around the time of the British Grand Prix, offering him Pierre Gasly’s race-seat only to receiving a “resounding ‘no’”.

Alonso walked away from Formula 1 at the end of last year but continues to make headlines as reports link to him a possible return in 2020.

It, however, could have been earlier had he accepted a Red Bull race-seat midway through this season.

Although Red Bull were publicly proclaiming that the team would stick with Gasly through to the end of this campaign, behind the scenes they were already shopping around at July’s British Grand Prix.

According to Mundo Deportivo, the Milton Keynes squad offered Gasly’s seat to Alonso only for the double World Champion to decline the offer.

“And it is not Fernando who approached Red Bull,” claims the report, “but it was the team led by Christian Horner who was interested in the driver.”

The answer though, was a “resounding ‘no’.”

When Alonso left F1 last year, he made his feelings on today’s sport well-known, saying he is unimpressed and uninterested in the lack of competition.

This is not the first time that Alonso has been linked to Red Bull with tech guru Adrian Newey revealing they were “very close” to signing him back in 2007.

“It’s one of those things that unfortunately never happened,” he told Esquire Magazine. “But it was very close.”

There were also talks in 2007, 2009, 2011 and 2013 while last year Alonso stated that Red Bull also approached him in “Monaco and again in August” regarding a 2019 drive.

Red Bull denied the latter approaches while it remains to be seen whether this latest one will come with a rebuttal.

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Honda engine/penalty strategy is ‘very complicated’

Honda admit is is “very complicated” deciding when to introduce a new Spec 4 engine as it means penalties for both Red Bull and Toro Rosso.

Honda have already introduced two engine updates this season, the Spec 2 and Spec 3.

The latter has been in action since the French GP but already the Japanese manufacturer has another upgraded ready to go.

The question is when do the Red Bull and Toro Rosso drivers take it.

“We are discussing all the time with the teams and we will decide when we apply a new engine or updated spec,” Honda’s F1 technical director Toyoharu Tanabe told Motorsport.com.

“At the moment no decision has been made yet.

“It depends on the situation and timing and the result of the discussions with the teams.

“It’s very complicated.”

While Formula 1 returns from the summer break with Spa and Monza back-to-back, both high-speed high-power circuits, Singapore is likely to be the next race on the calendar have a really good chance of winning.

Then there is the Japanese Grand Prix, Honda’s home race and one in which they would love to excel.

Singapore will almost certainly be prioritised given it represents a significant opportunity for Red Bull to take another win this season, but Honda’s home race in Japan is only the fifth race after the summer break.

With Motorsport.com reporting that Honda believe their power unit can last six races without issues or losing performance, it is a case of balancing long-term goals with short-term ones.

Tanabe added: “We have two types of plan, long-term and short-term.

“After the race we review the situation, the condition of the PU, maybe two or three races is the short-term. And the long-term means until the end of the season.

“It is very complicated.”

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before he even knocked on mj’s door, my boi peter parker firstly took care of himself. LOOK AT HIM.


he’s lost weight he’d gained during his bad days. he combed his hair. he’s got a clean suit. he’s got flowers. he’s about to smile. he’s nervous, but ready to face the love of his life.

he probably also tidied up his apartment, organized his documents and desktop, did his laundry, cut his hair, started shaving regularly, and only then he faced mj.

remember to take care of yourself first, people. everything comes from within and starts with you.

This detail makes me so happy, because he doesn’t want to be pitied. He wants to prove to MJ that he’s ready to be back in her life and that he’s ready to be a dad so he gets off his butt and stops wallowing in his own sadness and takes care of himself. And all it took was for Miles to remind him what it means to be Spider-Man, and to put him in a situation where he has to be better than he has been recently. It fills him with the confidence he needs to take the next step in his life no matter how afraid he is.

As much as Peter was able to teach Miles, he learned just as much from him at the same time. It’s a beautifully crafted arch that the both of them go through and it’s the best way to have Peter in a Miles story, without stealing the show.

God I love this movie.

See this is what “you have to love yourself before you can love someone else” means. It doesn’t mean that people with no self-esteem don’t deserve love. It means that you can’t be dependent on your partner to take care of you, because that isn’t fair to them. They didn’t sign up to be your mother. Peter B couldn’t have gotten MJ back in the wallowing state he was in before he met Miles because he wasn’t ready to build a life with her yet.

Stroll and Racing Point focusing on present

Lance Stroll has said he and Racing Point are focusing on the present rather than looking ahead to next season and beyond.

Since being bought out by Stroll’s father, the team have begun to make steady progress, but with more investment and regulation changes on the horizon, they could be forgiven for paying more attention to the future.

“I think we have to focus on the present,” Stroll said as per insideracing.com.

“What we can do moving forward is definitely in the back of our mind, but yeah we’ll see what the future holds.

“At the moment it’s really about approaching the rest of this season and then, of course, bringing the best car we can for next season.

“That’s a different story right now. We still have a lot of racing left for this year, and then we’ll see.”

While he has enjoyed some strong results, such as a P4 finish in Germany, Stroll, who’s set to be announced for next season, has generally struggled in his first season with the team, only making it out of Q1 once.

“It’s not where we want to be,” he added.

“This sport is an unknown, there is no certainty.

“Clearly, the other teams have made some progress through the course of the first half of the season. Unfortunately, they’ve managed to leap us by a few tenths.

“That’s how it is, we just need to deal with it and bounce back.”

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“Insane” McLaren size adds pressure for Norris

Lando Norris has said the sheer size of the McLaren operation has added pressure to his rookie season in the sport.

Norris has impressed in the first half of the season, finishing as high as P6 twice and helping the team establish themselves as the best of the rest.

Speaking to Motorsport.com about the size of McLaren, the Brit said:

“It’s pretty insane. How nice everything is and how many people are there.

“It’s at the higher end compared to the majority of the teams.

“Every day I walk in, it’s always awesome. I’ve spoken to a lot of people, aerodynamicists and guys in different bays or the carbon shop or trim shop or whatever, it’s always cool and always find out something more. ”

While the youngster is generally enjoying being a part of such a huge operation, he admits that having so many people count on you does add pressure.

“It does add a bit of pressure at the same time, knowing all of these people there relying on Carlos and myself to do a good job”, Norris added.

“It puts more pressure on you but it’s a pressure that’s gone away more and more, in a good way.

“I did the first race and I was like ‘I’ve got a lot of people expecting things’.

“It’s the same now, but I’m more relaxed on that side, and more confident in my own driving, that I can do a better job and I won’t disappoint them.”

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Hamilton wants closer fight with young rivals

Lewis Hamilton has said he’s impressed by youngsters Max Verstappen and Charles Leclerc, and hopes to enjoy a closer battle with them going forward.

While the Brit has battled the two on track, neither has had a strong enough car to consistently challenge Hamilton in the Championship.

This has briefly changed in recent times however in the case of Max Verstappen, who has won two of the last four races and enjoyed a titanic fight with Hamilton in Hungary.

“We’ve seen a big step with Red Bull. They’ve really taken a leap forward with their [Honda] power unit this year and it’s pretty great to see,” Hamilton said to the official Formula 1 website.

“They’re going to go from strength to strength and Max is naturally just… he’s not a youngster necessarily in the sport anymore. While he’s young, he’s been here for a few years.”

While Leclerc hasn’t enjoyed the same level of success as the Dutchman, he’s been a precious few laps away from victories in Bahrain and Austria.

“Charles is only in his second season, so he’s grown and I can only see him getting stronger and we’re already seeing some great performances from him this season and that one is definitely one to watch out for,” Hamilton added.

“Whether or not Ferrari are going to pick up their pace, I don’t know. They’re kind of up and down at the moment – last year I think it was quite close between three of us, I think Ferrari were slightly quicker.

“I hope it’s close, and I hope it gets closer through the year. I’m always down, I’m always ready.”

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