Tech-know-crat

Your Dose of obsession from Formula 1, Flying, Travel, Football, Watches, Collectibles and everything inspirational everywhere in daily life

Posts for Tag: 2016

The Flying Diaries : BOM - BCN - BOM ( Emirates First & Business )

The First Race of the 2016 F1 Season that I had the privilege of attending was the Spanish Grand Prix. The Race was held on 15th May. I decided to opt for a Mixed Class Experience on Emirates since both the legs to Barcelona were Airbus A380 and the Return legs on the Boeing 777-300ER, so First Class on Outbound, Business Class on Inbound.


My Travel Dates : 12th May 2016 to 20th May 2016.



Mumbai - Barcelona ( 12th May 2016 ) :

Shots from the First Class Lounge :


The Spread in the Lounge :


First Class Suite onboard Emirates :


Aero Bridge retracting from Airbus A380 ( Video Link ):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KETtYVIxj4E


Taxiing to the Runway :


Takeoff from Mumbai International Airport ( Video Link ) :


The Menu enroute to Dubai :


Croissants and Yogurt for Breakfast :


The Airbus A380 has a Lounge behind the Business Class and one must not miss the chance to visit it :


Nearing touchdown at Dubai International Airport :


Landing at Dubai International Airport ( Video Link ) :

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=543O6kDVW_4


Dubai International Airport :


Shots from the First Class Lounge :


After a quick nap it was time to board the flight to Barcelona.


My First Class Suite :


Taxiing to the Runway :


Takeoff from Dubai International Airport bound for Barcelona ( Video Link ) :


The Goodies Basket :


The Menu for Flight to Barcelona :


Savoury Snacks to start the journey :


Lunch Service commences :


Spending some time in the Onboard Lounge :


76 Business Class Seats :


A Mini-bar in First Class :


A Quick Walk-through the Business Class ( Video Link ) :

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yY5ofM45dKI


A Quick Walk-through First Class ( Video Link ) :

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9BvKkMto_VY


The Bed ready and set for the nap :


My First Class Suite ( Video Link ) :

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O2rUKmEDEyo


I always choose to have a shower an hour before landing. The Washroom doubles up as a Shower Facility onboard the A380 :


Video Link for Shower Spa :

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OhvUx6oowK4


Some fruits before landing :


Approaching Barcelona. The Compass Feature is beautiful on ICE :


Nearing Touchdown :



Landing at Barcelona Airport ( Video Link ) :


Barcelona El Prat International Airport :


A quick exit from the Airport Formalities and a spanking new BMW 7 Series was waiting for me to drop me at Novotel Barcelona City.


Enroute to the Hotel :




Barcelona - Mumbai ( 20th May 2016 ) :


The Mercedes Viano Van for return transfer :


Driving to the Airport :


All formalities complete in record time, it was time to relax in the lounge, common for First and Business :


My Business Class Seat to Dubai :


Ginger Ale, not anything else ;)


Dinner Options on-board :


Taxiing to the Runway :


Takeoff from Barcelona ( Video Link ) :




The English Premier League Show. Fairy Tale Story of Leicester City FC :


Dinner :


Such a comfortable looking bed :


"Hitting the Apex" a Fantastic Presentation about Moto GP riders :


Approaching Dubai International Airport :


Landing at Dubai International Airport ( Video Link ) :

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8bmYFMPjrbY


Touchdown at Dubai International Airport :


A Very Comfortable Bus Ride to the Airport Terminal :


Business Class Lounge in Dubai :


Business Class seats on final leg :


The Menu for the Final Leg :


Really? A Watch this expensive?!!


Goodbye Dubai, until next time :


Takeoff from Dubai International Airport ( Video Link ) :

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EQb0ayaPOrs


Lunch Service :


Touching down in Mumbai :


Landing at Mumbai Airport ( Video Link ) :

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qzli7HRoPLA



Mumbai International Airport :


Being picked up by a Mercedes C Class from Mumbai :

A very relaxing journey, lip smacking food, luxurious transfers, what more can an airline do to pamper you! Thoroughly impressed by the service by Emirates and I can't think of flying with any other airline.

The next trip will feature the Mixed Class Travel to Budapest. Thank you for being patient.














The Driver Merry-Go-Round...Decisions Decisions Decisions!

The European Leg of the 2016 F1 Season came to an end last weekend. The 7 "Fly-Aways" remain.

We are entering into a pivotal part of the season, both on and off the track. A lot of changes happened and are going to happen in the world of F1. 2017 is going to be an intriguing year, be it for the new Regulations, Fatter Tyres and the new owners of F1.


This time of the year is also important for those who still are unawares of their drives next year. There are a lot of things that are going to play a big part in deciding their fate for 2017. So who is certain and who is not for 2017? Are there any new rookies joining the fray?


Time to take a quick peek into the "Driver Markets" World!


Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team :

Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg are locked down for 2017. The Decision is a no-brainer for both the team and the drivers. Who would want to leave the fastest team on the grid! Could 2017 bring some parity? We shall know next year.


Scuderia Ferrari F1 Team :

Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen continue their partnership next year. There was some chatter about Perez getting Kimi's seat for 2017 but Ferrari squashed all rumours by announcing their lineup a lot earlier than usual. Kimi has been a lot closer and beating Vettel in many races. The Iceman's performances drastically improved and letting go of such an asset would be very unwise. Staying with the tried and tested also brings stability in the team, specially for Ferrari who are playing catch-up for sometime now. This pairing has it in them to bring back the years of the "Prancing Horse". I am overjoyed about Kimi's contract renewal. ALL HAIL THE ICEMAN!


Red Bull Racing F1 Team :

Daniel Ricciardo and Max Verstappen have been fantastic in 2016 ( so far ) and the team sees no reason to change its line-up. Max who replaced Kvyat after the Russian GP has been a revelation- winning on his race debut ( youngest driver ), podiums and strong points finishes. True his recent performances and lack of respect for co-drivers leave much to be desired but the youngster's ability cannot be doubted. Ricciardo, the Honey Badger, he is an absolute hit amongst the fans. His demeanour, his character is perfect fit for a team like Red Bull. Performances are never a cause for contention and not persisting with the Australian would be suicidal.


Sahara Force India F1 Team :

Force India improved considerably in the new turbo era and one can say that they are contenders for podium finishes in certain races. Perez bagged his fair share of podiums while Hulkenberg prides in finishing consistently in points. The Latter didn't ruffle many feathers in the paddock but is going about his job in a professional way. He continues with the team. Perez on the other hand was on the lookout for a better drive, a replacement for Kimi was also doing the rounds. Some suggested approach by another works team in Renault. The latest developments suggest that he has re-signed with Force India, probably playing a waiting game before a seat in the top runners opens up in 2018. Wise Decision.


McLaren Honda F1 Team :

Jenson Button and Fernando Alonso, 2 Former Champions drove for McLaren since 2015. McLaren are clearly struggling in their new partnership with Honda. Progress is slow and both drivers have been losing patience with the car. Stoffel Vandoorne, the 2015 GP2 Champion is waiting in the wings and putting him in one of the seats would be a great option for the team. The Path was cleared when Jenson Button announced that he was taking a 'sabbatical' in 2017 and would aid in the development of the 2017 challenger. He would have the option to race in 2018 should Alonso choose to retire. This is quite an interesting decision to be honest. Taking a 'sabbatical' could turn out to be a master stroke, as was the case with Alain Prost who won his 4th Championship with Williams on his return to F1 or it could also turn to retirement should the team find someone capable enough to race in 2018 or even persist with Alonso. What conspires over the course of next year no one knows. I personally think McLaren covered themselves against Williams who were vying for the Brit's signature in 2017. Williams is placed well above McLaren for now but 2017 could turn out to be a great leveller.


Scuderia Toro Rosso F1 Team :

Carlos Sainz Jr. is confirmed for 2017. Max Verstappen moved upto the A Team from the Spanish GP while Daniil Kvyat got demoted. Kvyat struggled since then and his performances in the final 7 races would be pivotal in deciding his fate in F1. Red Bull seem to be diplomatic in its answers about the Toro Rosso lineup for 2017. Pierre Gasly driving in GP2 has gained a fair amount of experience in a F1 car. A drive in F1 is long overdue for the Frenchman. I feel its a matter of when rather than whether and internally it seems that the answer for when will be given well before the season ends. Kvyat's management should be exploring and contacting other teams. The Red Bull program looks done and dusted for him.


Williams F1 Team :

Valtteri Bottas and Felipe Massa, a strong pairing will not feature together in 2017. Felipe Massa announced his retirement at the Italian GP bringing to an end an unbelievable career in F1. He will be completing 250 Races at the end of the season and who can forget the narrow miss of the Drivers' Championship in 2008! Valtteri Bottas has expressed his desire to stay at Williams for 2017 but the team don't seem to be in a hurry to finalize their lineup. Frankly, there aren't many options and the team should renew his contract. Bottas has a fantastic management handling his career so this shouldn't be an issue.

Button who was tipped to replace Massa according to some tabloids opted for a sabbatical so the second seat is up for grabs. Perez has an outside chance but would not want to jeopardize his chances of switching to Ferrari in 2018. I believe GP2 driver Alex Lynn will get promoted from his Development Driver Status. Lance Stroll, F3 Driver is also in the reckoning. Many tabloids suggest he is ready for the big leap. He has the skills, just hope he has the maturity to race at this level. One cannot write off someone like Kvyat if he opts to leave Red Bull's program but then again, every race result would be important for him.


Haas F1 Team :

Haas F1, the debutants of 2016 have both seats available for 2017. Romain Grosjean and Esteban Gutierrez would be keen to renew, the former being more successful for the team. Grosjean left Renault in 2015 with the sole intention of joining Ferrari in a couple of years and his "audition" at Haas has been decent. Gutierrez's return to full time racing has been marred with problems.  Ferrari will have a big say in the decision making and would encourage the team to hire somebody from their Ferrari program - Raffaele Marciello from GP2, Charles LeClerc and Antonio Fuoco from GP3 the contenders. LeClerc for me is the best bet. Persisting with Grosjean would be logical decision. Sadly, Gutierrez might have to return to being a Reserve Driver for Ferrari.

I hope I am proved wrong!


Renault Sport F1 Team :

Jolyon Palmer, the 2014 GP2 Champion and ex-McLaren driver Kevin Magnussen were the challengers representing the Renault Sport F1 Team for 2016. Neither have a contract for 2017. An insider known to me had hinted about Palmer being in the team for only one year and the team would have to be convinced to continue with him for 2017. The decision had been made even before the season began it seems! Magnussen is young and still maturing in F1. The Team needs someone with experience, someone who would help develop their car and help them move up the field. They are a works team, so the onus of being a front runner is big, for whoever they sign. Grosjean is the only one that comes to mind but the Frenchman spent many years in Oxfordshire. To think of a reunion would be downright absurd. The team has next to zero options when it comes to hiring experience. Bottas is available but would he be willing to move down the grid and help the team move up? Illogical. Kvyat could get the drive and maybe Magnussen a contract extension. Esteban Ocon, their reserve driver up until the Belgian GP is also an intriguing case. He has been sponsored by Genii ( former owners of the team ) and is also a part of the unofficial "Mercedes Driver Program". His career path is chosen so his chances seem bleak. Antonio Giovinazzi is one independent driver in GP2 that comes to mind and is extremely talented. Carmen Jorda? Well it would be a proud moment to have women racing in F1.

Renault is a works team and have their work cut out for the upcoming season. Spending money on hiring will not be a challenge but getting a mix of experience and youth will be. One must not forget the learning curve is steep so it won't be smooth sailing. Patience is key.


Sauber F1 Team :

Sauber, a team riddled with financial issues are searching for a potential buyer. A takeover is on the cards and if it does come to fruition, Marcus Ericsson and Felipe Nasr's could be up for the taking. Both are pay drivers and helped the team to stay above board this year. No disrespect to either but I feel they were hired a season too early. There were more mature drivers in the feeder series but the fatter sponsorship got the job done for the duo. The situation today is the same in the feeder series. If the team were to decide on making only one seat available, Ericsson will get the boot ( according to me ). Sergey Sirotkin got a taste of F1 in the past and would be eyeing a promotion. Ferrari will have a say too ( not as much as in Haas' case ) and hiring one of their academy drivers would bring in benefits for the team. It will be an interesting to see who is onboard for 2017. I believe Nasr and Marciello would be in the Blue Overalls for 2017.

Sauber are the slowest team on the grid and its sad to see them struggle like this. The team that had the knack of springing surprises must return to scoring points again. Peter Sauber earned the reputation of hiring quality in F1, a known fact amongst the paddock and the fans. I hope that their financial issues are resolved and the team is back at doing what it does best - bringing the best to F1!


Manor Racing F1 Team :

Manor, cash-strapped and essentially a testing ground for the Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team had a brilliant 2015 ( under the old name Marussia ) and an even better 2016 ( so far ). Pascal Wehrlein is a revelation. Rio Haryanto not so much. The Latter too was a pay driver and rushed into the sport earlier than he should have been. His inability to deliver on the sponsorship side sadly saw him lose his seat to Esteban Ocon who immediately warmed up to the task and looks set for delivering strong finishes for the team in 2016. Re-signing both is the way forward. True they have limited resources and funds to live with but their drivers are punching well above their weight. The sky is the limit.


2017 promises to be a challenging year for all the teams. New Regulations might bring more parity. There is still a lot that 2016 has to offer and the next few weeks should clear the air about who ends up where.

Till then, fasten your seat-belts and enjoy the ride!

God Bless!





2016 Mid Season Review - A Cut above the Rest

2014 & 2015 saw Mercedes AMG F1 flatten all opposition that came in their way of winning both the Drivers' and the Constructors' Titles.

Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg have dominated with race victories, the former winning 2 World Championships.

2016, the 3rd year of the Turbo Era boasts of being the longest season in F1 with 21 Races. Baku, Azerbaijan is the New European GP. Haas F1 Team is the new entrant and hired the services of Romain Grosjean and Esteban Gutierrez. Lotus F1 became Renault Sport F1 ( Works Team ), Kevin Magnussen and Jolyon Palmer joined their ranks. Marussia became Manor Racing, DTM Champion Pascal Wehrlein and GP2 Driver Rio Haryanto joining them.

A Lot is new in F1 this season but is there a new force to reckon with in the sport? we have completed 11 races of the season and its time to take a quick peek into how the season has unfolded.


Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team :

Its no secret that Mercedes spent a lot of time developing the cars for the new turbo era. Experts tipped them as favourites for 2016 and the team has not disappointed again. They have dominated both in Qualifying and in the Races. Barring one race ( Spain ) where both the drivers took each other out, the team has won every Grand Prix up until now. Lewis Hamilton suffered with reliability issues and he might have to take a 10 place penalty in the near future. Rosberg had strong start to the season but his challenge has faltered somewhat since Spain. 3 Podiums in 7 races meant losing the Championship lead to Hamilton going into the mid season break. Hamilton on the other hand was riddled with reliability issues but rose among them. 6 Race Victories to 5 of Rosberg's mean he leads the Championship by 19 points. Hamilton looks in ominous form. However he is playing down his chances for the Championship cause of Penalties coming his way. Its hard to catch Hamilton when he gets into such a rhythm and how Rosberg approaches the upcoming races would be intriguing to watch.

Mercedes have enough in reserve and can easily extend the gap when they need to against their opposition. Frankly, I don't see anyone challenging them for the 2016 Crown. Again!


Scuderia Ferrari F1 Team :

Ferrari had a lot of positivity about them going into 2016. They really believed the SF-16H had what was needed to dethrone the Mercedes from its perch. Sebastian Vettel had some blistering starts in the races. Kimi Raikkonen followed suit too. However both have suffered with Reliability issues ( Vettel more often ). Bad Strategic calls in some races added to the woes. The Team seemed to be the sole challenger but the challenge has somewhat fizzled out since the British Grand Prix. A Lot of updates and tokens have been used throughout the season but they have yielded mixed results.

Kimi Raikkonen, the more consistent of the two drivers, sits 4th in the Championship, 95 points adrift of Hamilton. Sebastian Vettel is 5th, a further 2 points away. Raikkonen's performances improved from those in 2014 and 2015 and suffered only 2 retirements up until now. Vettel suffered from 2 DNFs and one DNS ( Did not start ). However has 5 podiums to Raikkonen's 4 till now.

Ferrari sit in 3rd in the Championship standings, Red Bull having jumped above them with strong results in the last 3 races. There is a lot of work to do for the Maranello Based Outfit. Beating Mercedes for the Constructors seems like a far fetched idea. Their battle is with Red Bull now, to be the best of the rest. 


Red Bull Racing F1 Team :

Red Bull sport a new name on their car in 2016. They formally broke their alliance with Renault at the end of 2015 but they sport a Tag Heuer branded Renault engine at the back of their car. Their lineup remained unchanged in Daniel Ricciardo and Daniil Kvyat until the latter's mistake in Russia brought about a decision to demote him to Scuderia Toro Rosso ( Red Bull B Team effectively ) and promote the Young Max Verstappen up into the A Team.

What followed next is the stuff of dreams. Max Verstappen won the Spanish GP in his debut race for the team holding of the challenge of Kimi Raikkonen and Sebastian Vettel. He also became the youngest driver to win a GP. Ricciardo on the other hand did what Ricciardo does best - Maximize results. It seemed that his time to win had arrived as well when he was leading in Monaco. However a botched pit stop handed victory to Hamilton and Ricciardo was distraught. He gathered himself and put in some really strong performances. Max Verstappen won a race and finished on the Podium thrice ( since his joining ) while Daniel Ricciardo has 3 podiums to his name and sits 3rd in the Championship.

Red Bull have got a measure of Ferrari now it seems. They have emerged as the primary contender to Mercedes for the 2nd half of the season. True, Renault's power deficit still needs to be address but the aerodynamic efficiency of the car is powering them ahead, maybe to more race victories.

It may be a little too late for Red Bull to fight for the Constructors' but the Milton Keyes based 4 time Constructors' Champions has made its presence felt!


Williams Martini Racing F1 Team :

Williams sit 4th in the Constructors, the deficit too big to cover to get into the top 3. They are looking nervously over the shoulder since Sahara Force India F1 is breathing down their necks. It is really intriguing to see how fortunes have changed for Williams. 2014 was a very strong year for Williams. 2015 saw a wane in form but in 2016 they seem to be totally off the pace. They still are the "Fastest Mercedes Customer" Team but this title might not last long with them.

Valtteri Bottas and Felipe Massa continue with the team in 2016, Bottas 7th and Mass 9th in the Championship. Bottas the more consistent of the duo bagged 3rd place in Canada, the best finish for the team till now. Massa's best finish is 5th ( twice ). The car is clearly struggling on multiple fronts. Should the team invest and try to improve this year or focus attention to 2017 and hope to stave off the challenge by other customer teams? I think they don't have enough in their arsenal to hold off the chasers and a certain amount of investment is needed this year to garner any hopes of being 4th in the Championship. Bottas is settled in the team but Massa seems a bit lost with the uncertainty of his driver contract for next year. Such issues need to be cleared asap so that the weightier matters can be addressed.


Sahara Force India F1 Team :

Force India had a strong 2015 after the B-Spec Car was launched. 2016 has been no different. They have carried the momentum and confidence into 2016 and I don't see any team stopping them from attaining 4th Place in the Constructors by the end of the year. Sergio Perez and Nico Hulkenberg continue racing for the Team in 2016. Perez finished on the podium twice this year while Hulkenberg's best finish is 6th. The team picked up the pace after the first 3 races and it will be interesting to see how their season pans out in the 2nd half.

Perez sits 8th in the Championship finishing in the points 5 times. Hulkenberg has 7 points finishes to his name and is 10th in the Championship. Its clear that it is a faceoff between the Williams and the Force India. My money is on the latter.


Scuderia Toro Rosso F1 Team :

Toro Rosso with a Ferrari Engine powering them have had a mercurial season so far. Their strengths came to the fore in the rains but have work to do in the dry. They can be proud of the fact that they lead the McLaren Honda team by 3 points but the next 2 races would be pivotal in maintaining their hold on P6 in the Standings. The Extra Money coming their way ( should they finish in 6th ) will aid in the car development to a great extent. The Team has a talented set of people working for them and the days ahead promise a lot of joy and excitement.

Carlos Sainz Jr. and Max Verstappen kicked off the 2016 season, the latter being promoted to Red Bull Racing from the Spanish GP. Daniil Kvyat took Verstappen's seat in Spain. Many people were unhappy with this premature decision. Some also questioned the reason behind choosing Verstappen over Sainz. Max outscored Sainz comfortably in the first 4 races and his performances for the A team have silenced all the critics. However one has to feel for Kvyat whose demotion initially left him distraught but the Russian has gathered himself and wants to prove his mettle in F1 again. Sainz leads the team-mate battle, having finished 8 times in the points and is placed 11th in the standings. Kvyat has a podium ( 3rd ) to his credit but that was with Red Bull, post that his performances dipped and he has only 3 other points finishes to his credit. Hopefully, the 4 week break has helped him sort out his problems and his results should improve from Belgium.

Toro Rosso is a great contributor to F1 and the fact that they boast such a young driver lineup, one can be rest assured that the future of F1 is in safe hands. All the Best to him for the second half of the season.


McLaren Honda F1 Team :

"Oh how the Mighty have Fallen". These are the words that come to mind when I think of McLaren. 2014 was a mediocre year. 2015 was rekindling an old partnership with Honda. What conspired after that was a nightmare. Everyone in the team hoped for a better outing in 2016. Honda made promises of addressing all the issues of their power units. McLaren sit 7th in the Constructors at the midpoint of the season, having scored one-tenth of what the Mercedes have scored. Honda is still finding its feet in the new era but this is nowhere near the standards set by the Woking based outfit in their yesteryears.

Fernando Alonso and Jenson Button continue their partnership into 2016 and both are working hard to iron out issues in their cars. Alonso is ahead in the team-mate battle on 24 points to Button's 17. They are placed 13th and 15th in the Drivers' Standings respectively. Alonso finished thrice in the points, 5th place being his best finish, Button has 5, 6th place being his best. In the aftermath of a collision with Gutierrez in Australia, Alonso was unfit to race in Bahrain and Vandoorne raced in Bahrain bagging a point for the team.

McLaren have their work cut out. They need to finish the 2nd half of the season on a strong note so that the same momentum is maintained going into 2017. Developing the 2017 car simultaneously would also be a wise decision. There are technical changes coming in 2017 and with the financial prowess they possess, development shouldn't be a problem.


Haas F1 Team :

Haas, the new boys in town roped in the services of Romain Grosjean and Estebaan Gutierrez. Ferrari supplied the engines and the team works closely with the Prancing Horse. Haas can boast of a strong debut in F1. Their performances and results have impressed many in the Paddock. The gap to McLaren is not much but I don't think that they would be able to finish ahead of them at the end of the year. Nevertheless if they produce strong results in the 2nd half of the season, 8th in the Constructors' can easily be cemented.

Grosjean has been the sole points earner for the team with 4 Points finishes and 12th in the Championship with 28 on the board. Gutierrez's return to F1 has been riddled with mistakes, misfortune and reliability issues. He is yet to score this season. Gutierrez needs to get off the blocks soon since performances this year and the next could decide who drives for Ferrari in 2018 ( should Raikkonen call it a day ). Grosjean seems happier than he was at Lotus. I see this team going from strength to strength and they should be regularly featuring in the points in the 2nd half.


Renault Sport F1 Team :

Renault had been a works team with Red Bull. However the struggles of 2014 and 15 brought about a storm that led to the separation of the two. Renault acquired Lotus F1 Team again and fans dreamt of the glory years of 2005 and 2006. The Road ahead is pretty arduous though. The acquisition was announced not too long before the Pre-Season Tests and as a result Development was hampered big time. The 2016 challenger is essentially the 2015 car with a lot of upgrades. Jolyon Palmer and Kevin Magnussen became the new driver pairing. As expected, the team has struggled to perform well. Magnussen's best finish of 7th in Russia are the only points that the team has achieved till now. Palmer's best finish was 11th in the Season Opener in Australia.

Renault Sport F1 is a team very close to my heart and I know there are lots of challenges along the way. However I am confident that one day the team would be back at the top contending for the crown. They have to recruit the right personnel with the necessary expertise and experience.


Manor Racing F1 Team :

Manor, the new name of Marussia ( from last year ) came into 2016 as supposedly the "slowest team" on the grid. Rio Haryanto ( GP2 Driver ) and DTM Champion Pascal Wehrlein signed up for them. Pascal got the drive thanks to Mercedes being the engine supplier for the team. Pascal managed to finish 10th in Austria and bring home the solitary point of the team so far. Haryanto has come up second best and sadly due to sponsorship issues has lost his seat to DTM driver and Renault F1 Reserve Driver Esteban Ocon. It would be a great feat for Manor to finish 10th in the Championship. Onwards and Upwards from there if they can manage more finances.


Sauber F1 Team :

Sauber an old yet famous in F1 is responsible for bringing in some of the fastest racers in F1. All that remains now is a mere shadow of their past. Riddled with Debt and short on finances, the team soldiers on. There have been news of a takeover doing the rounds since some time and if it comes to pass, a lot of issues would be addressed for the team. Its sad to see them struggle and I don't see any improvements happening in the near future. Felipe Nasr and Marcus Ericsson are yet to score a point this season and both need to move up a few gears in terms of performances. Frankly, their sponsorship backings are keeping them in F1..but for how long...the question remains..


Mercedes AMG F1 Team seem unstoppable in 2016. Red Bull Racing have rediscovered their Form. Scuderia Ferrari need to work hard to stay in touch with the Table Toppers. The Constructors' Championship seems done and dusted while the Drivers' Championship should be a faceoff between the Mercedes Team-mates.

The Season returns in Belgium this weekend. F1 returns and so does sanity! Enjoy the rest of the season friends!