Charlie’s Chatter

  • Defending champion Nico Rosberg is going to make an appearance at the track this weekend. Does he have an itch for racing that needs scratching? We’ll see if Hamilton gives him the cold shoulder.
  • Massa doesn’t seem to appreciate being left in limbo by Williams about whether he will have a ride next year. He’s trashing the idea of Kubica, his possible replacement, testing in a 2014 car.
  • Is McLaren waiting until after the Japanese GP to announce Alonso’s extension? If it does, Alonso can publicly trash Honda at the presser, which we all know he is dying to do.
  • ESPN/ABC announced that it bought the US broadcast rights to F1 for 2018. For better or worse, that probably means the end of the F1 crew from NBCSports. Hopefully ESPN manages to snag heartthrob Will Buxton, so the boys of The F1 Newsletter don’t have to go into mourning.
  • Further evidence (Stroll’s onboard camera) suggests that Vettel bears the majority of the blame for the cool down lap collision between the two. Is Vettel unraveling?
  • No team has more wins at the Japanese Grand Prix than McLaren.
  • Red Bull team head Helmut Marko surprised everyone by announcing that “Ricciardo is on the market” for 2019. I mean, duh, we all knew his contract expires after 2018. So what is the play here? And Marko better check the fine print on Verstappen’s contract too because, although Marko wishes it were otherwise, so does young Max’s.
  • Alonso is already ramping up the pressure on his McLaren engineers. He says that a team with McLaren’s history should plan to beat Red Bull in 2018 when they will have the same engine.
  • Marcus Erikkson says that he is .3 seconds per lap slower because he is 10kg heavier than his teammate and that is making him look uncompetitive. Here’s a free tip Marcus: lay off the cheeseburgers and this problem will take care of itself.

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