Usually the Thursday before a Grand Prix is a relatively low key affair, teams pottering about round the garage, drivers popping along to the *yawnsome* FIA press conferences and fulfilling sponsorship obligations, journalists casually milling to and fro and a few keen enthusiasts wandering down the pitlane to gawp at what is going on.

colinkolles.jpgToday things got a little bit more interesting. Current reports suggest that Spyker-Ferrari were not content with sitting back and waiting for the arbitration proceedings they have launched against Super Aguri and Torro Rosso after Melbourne to come to fruition. Eye witnesses in the Formula 1 paddock report spotting Spyker Team Boss Colin Kolles at one point in the afternoon engaged in ‘animated discussion’ with Daniele Audetto from Super Aguri, that’s a full-on flaming row to us normal folk.

Obviously firm believers in the two for the price of one concept, Spyker then lodged an official protest against the Scuderia Torro Rosso team within the two hour scrutineering deadline, basically stating that the STR2 was nothing more than a copycat of the RB3. According to media reports Spyker are supposed to have put forward newly aquired top secret evidence about who designed the STR2…..although what is so top secret is beyond me since Design Guru Adrian Newey is known to have been behind it. Maybe Spyker should get round to reading their newspapers a bit more.

New STR Technical Director Giorgio Ascanelli was seen at one point having to take parts of the STR2 into the stewards for scrutineering. I doubt very much if Mr Ascanelli will be feeling quite so philosophical if STR has to go racing with half its bits and bobs missing because they have been confiscated by the “naughty” police. Still having learnt his trade at Ferrari it will be like second nature for him being at the sharp end of things….and a bit of mud slinging well it will all be water off a ducks bottom for our Giorgio.

Meanwhile Spyker who lodged the protest have been left to sweat it out all night, as the stewards are thought to be still debating the issue (although personally I reckon they are actually eating their tea off the bodywork and watching reality tv behind closed doors). An announcement regarding the outcome of the official protest is expected to be made tomorrow morning at 11am before free practice starts, and after the stewards have recovered from their hangovers and consulted wikipedia to find out what they are actually looking at.

Insiders in the sport are claiming the issue will be brought to a conclusion once the correct level of compensation has been obtained, which does lead one to wonder if it means Spyker are holding out for enough cash to buy themselves their very own customer car to cheat with.

Meanwhile down at Ferrari, everything is looking ice cool and under control. Despite McLaren sneakily shopping their arch rivals to the FIA for having moving floor-boards…(they really should come to my house they’d have a field day) Ferrari duo Felipe Massa and Kimi Raikkonen are claiming that the team are completely unconcerned about the new stringent floor tests the FIA will be introducing.

kiminonchalant.jpgKimi has stated that the Ferrari has always been legal and in keeping with the FIA regulations (are we talking about the same team here?), and that the team have not actually had to remove or alter anything on the F2007. Team Mate Felipe Massa has also confirmed that the new tests will have zero impact on the performace of the F2007.

Just to show how really unconcerned he is, and let’s face it with Kimi’s “I don’t give a monkeys” attitude we were never convinced otherwise, the flying Finn has gone on record as stating he is not worrying his socks off about the state of the F2007’s engine which suffered cooling problems in Melbourne. “I don’t worry about that because we don’t know what the deal is. If we need to change then we need to make a new plan, but we wait until we know exactly what we are going to do,” the Finn said. No doubt Head of Track Operations Luca Baldisserri is doing all the panicking on your behalf Kimi. Poor poppet.

So it remains to be seen who will come out having the last laugh? who will be going home from Sepang with egg on their face? will McLaren ever make that quantum leap Ron-Bot is always spewing about? and why do F1 teams always get their knickers in a twist over coiled springs?

(For a short animation on how Ferrari’s “moving” floor is supposed to work) visit:
http://mediacenter.gazzetta.it/MediaCenter/action/player?uuid=6cb83acc-e40d-11db-a9ea-0003ba99c667

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