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Rediff.com  » Sports » 'Kimi should leave McLaren'

'Kimi should leave McLaren'

April 03, 2006 19:37 IST

Formula One fans are a passionate breed. And when Sumit Rajwade and Raja Sen landed in the rediff Formula One chat on Monday afternoon a minute late, the questions were already piling up.

Don't miss: The Formula 1 blog

Even as McLaren fans argued the benefits of Kimi Raikkonen, and the Renault gang was crowing over Fernando Alonso having just won the Australian Grand Prix, it was pretty clear that Ferrari-love isn't dead. And neither is Michael Schumacher-worship.

Check out all the action from rediff's inaugural Formula One chat:

Panzer asked, Guys! Why is the answer column still empty??
Sumit Rajwade answers, Good afternoon everyone. Sorry for being a minute late. Lets start our very first chat of F1


Panzer asked, Wht is wrong with Mclaren even when they hav found reliability??
Sumit Rajwade answers, Its not the question of what is wrong. Kimi and Montoya are looking in a very good form. Their car is in a stable mode as well after the burn outs in the previous years. Its the case of Renault being a faster car.


desiabroad asked, Sumit, How are the chances for Mclaren and Kimi to win the constructors and Drives titles this season ?
Sumit Rajwade answers, See, as the things stand today, we have just finished 3 races. Alonso has 28 points while Kimi has 14 points. So, though the gap is there, Kimi still has a chance as long as he gets a pole position in maximum races. Kimi can definitely drive the car fast.


Muni asked, Do you still believe GPMA is alive ??
Sumit Rajwade answers, GPMA is still there. Atleast for now. They are yet to put pen to paper on a new Concorde Agreement.


Raja Sen says, Hi guys. Hope you've been flooding Sumit with questions! Now the rabid Ferrari fan enters the chat, so shoot for me too.


Panzer asked, Sumit, How Ferrari, Renault and Honda r still having tobacco sponsorship on their cars when others like Mclaren (West) hav given it up long ago??
Raja Sen answers, Heya Panzer.. honestly, the tobac companies are some of the biggest cash cows in the sport... all the firms would love a Marlboro but they can't get it.. McLaren hasn't given up on West, West gave up on McLaren :)


mp asked, hey sumit , dont u think one tyre rule is just rubbish ?
Sumit Rajwade answers, Yes and No. Yes, because I think if there are 2 tyre makers they they both have fair chance to battle on the ground. No, because as Bridgestone tyres take longer to warm up than Michelin which can at times prove against them. So for fair race, 1 tyre is fine, for fair chance to Cos, 2 tyres are fine :-)


Panzer asked, Sumit, How Ferrari, Renault and Honda r still having tobacco sponsorship on their cars when others like Mclaren (West) hav given it up long ago??
Raja Sen answers, Heya Panzer.. honestly, the tobac companies are some of the biggest cash cows in the sport... all the firms would love a Marlboro but they can't get it.. McLaren hasn't given up on West, West gave up on McLaren :)


paragmohata asked, is the ferrari dominance being replaced by renault dominance?
Raja Sen answers, parag, I hate to say this, but you might be right. the Blue team hasn't put a foot wrong all season (well, lets not discuss signing Fisi) ..


Muni asked, FIA says , they have changed the rules to save the cost..but rules for 2008 seems to be worst like freeze the engine development etc
Raja Sen answers, the rule changes are getting increasingly drastic and increasingly ridiculous. I believe we should go back to the 2000 season. Hell with revcounts; let the cars fly!


Panzer asked, The Williams team seems to hav copied the MP4-20 design, havnt they??
Raja Sen answers, Panzer, remember how the MP420 fared? Why would anyone copy THAT?? ;)


paragmohata asked, RS, in that case, shud ferrari look for signing on fresh talent, rather than going for MS. I also think that massa was a funny choice... your comments please
Raja Sen answers, See, Massa has always been a flummoxing decision. He's never shown Ferrari-worthy talent. But then Jean Todt and gang must have seen some spark. He was impressive in Qualifying at Bahrain, but he really needs to up his game and make the most of this opportunity. As for MS, I believe no team can (or should) ever ask him to step down. What do you thinK?


mogambo asked, well well whoever said sumit rajawade is a racing nut-he is truly a great nut in every sense of the term
Sumit Rajwade answers, :-) I will take than as a complement.


Panzer asked, Raja, u mean to say the new rule to hav no tobacco sponsorship in Europe doent apply to F1 yet??
Raja Sen answers, Not entirely. As you must have noticed, most of the euro races have the tobacco names blanked out or replaced -- McLaren has the drivers name, Ferrari whites out Marlboro, Benson'n'Hedges was turned into Bitter Heroes -- but for the rest of the races, tobacco sponsorship goes on.


mclaren asked, What do u recon? Michael is a spent force? His reflexes are not what they used to be.. he cannot match up to the young guns, time to bid good bye to a legend!
Raja Sen answers, McLaren, now you're being way too optimistic. :) As we saw yesterday, Michael's still raring to go. His car (and, yesterday, his tyres) aren't as good as the Renault,but that doesn't mean he can't give them a fight. Prepare for a resurgence soon.


Panzer asked, Well RS, the MP4-20 was way quick than the others!! Only problem was frm the Mercedes V10!!
Raja Sen answers, *grin* It was stunningly quick, I agree. Now if only it would last a race distance! ;)


sharmasharad28@rediffmail.com asked, Why do u think is the Ferrari team is suddenly witnessing downfall after the historic 2004 season??
Raja Sen answers, in a sport, every team has its time to peak. Ferrari enjoyed superlative dominance for the last five years, and it was obvious that the other teams would technologically catch up.


shaikh asked, Montoya are looking in a very good form. Their car is in a stable mode as well after the burn outs in the previous years. Its the case of Renault being a faster car.
Sumit Rajwade answers, Really speaking both cars are equally fast, however Renauls goes a litle faster on the straights -- thats what I feel. The special thing about Renauls is their combination of overtaking and pit stop strategy. Above all, Alonso really is running it like nobody else can. Its just the overall equation which is placed right.


Princess asked, Ah Mr Sen! from movies to mclaren, montoya and michael... that's quite a leap indeed. So what's your take on the dismal performance by Schumi so far? Should he retire gracefully, like some cricketer we know so well in India, you think?
Raja Sen answers, Well, Princess, leaps are what keep us active, don't you think? Personally, I don't think Schumacher is any less of a racing driver than he's ever been. Yes, his car isn't as fast as the Renault. And yes, the Bridgestones aren't warming up quickly enough. But lets just wait for Europe.. p.s - come on, stop baying for Dravid's retirement! ;)


mclaren asked, NK does not have age on his side, most constructors need to see talent and want to take a long term view of their drivers.. see any car, everyone has their men identified... mclaren- alonso, ferrari - kimi, honda - button, Redbull - JPM etc
Raja Sen answers, honestly, can't wait to see Kimi in a Ferrari. It'll be amazing to see what the Finn is capable of in a 'reliable' car. I think he's the fastest current driver out there. Lets hope the rumours are true, and he signs for the Reds soon.


button asked, Sumit, I disagree with you about Alonso, He won mostly on pit stratergy. If there is no Pit to car communication, he will not make it to the podium
Sumit Rajwade answers, Well, race - 1 yes. He got it right by 1/10th of a sec. What about race - 3 @ albert part. Do you think his initial dash and then overtaking Button was not his own credit?


chatgururavi asked, Hi Raja, I think its time Bugati made appearance in the F1 scenario, have they arleady started thinking about it?
Raja Sen answers, hi.. that's an intriguing thought, and I drool over the Veyron too. But racing requires massive resources, and I don't know if it suits Bugatti. Also, some great sportscar makers have floundered in F1.. that just makes things bad. Why would a Porsche want to join F1 and finish behind Toyotas and Hondas?


jaunpablofan asked, Hi Guys, Given the first few races - Do you think the V8s are producing close racing?
Sumit Rajwade answers, Good question. Well they ideally should and they kind of are. But the close racing is so far seen mainly in the 2-3 or 4-5 place fights. But overall, yes, we should witness quite a good amount of close racing this year.


button asked, I really think, that the pit to car radio should be banned and the convention sign boards should be used.
Raja Sen answers, but then we won't get to hear Fisichella being yelled at by his team for being 2 seconds slower!! :D On a more serious note, button, the technology is a great one, and driver-pitlane communication benefits everyone. It doesn't make any job easier -- imagine driving through a rainy chicane with pit bosses barking orders.


mclaren asked, Kimi and Ferrai will be some combo, they will need to be if they have to take on alonso in mclaren.. can't wait..! bring 2007 on....
Sumit Rajwade answers, Yes. If Ferrari launches a new car by then, then its going to be an eventful year 2007. But, watch 2006 as well. There is a lot different this year.


mclaren asked, Raja, wish your words are true.. will be good to see schumi back in the zone... but with ferrari chasing Kimi and Maasa being allowed to race MS on track, the cracks are begining to show.. MS is now in a unfamiliar territory...
Raja Sen answers, he's had tricky years before. great sportsmen need to up their game to make a comeback. He knows he needs to make up for the car. He's angry, as we saw with the frantic driving yesterday, and that's a good sign. Watch out for more.


button asked, Raja, do not forget the Ferrari ordering Barechelo to make way to MK
Raja Sen answers, yes, but ALL teams have team orders. every single team has a strategy and the drivers are expected to follow it to the T.. Remember the Hakkinen days when DC would stay behind and block the Ferraris so Mika could race ahead?


chatgururavi asked, raja sen, Yes, but its intersting to see what bugati would churn out only for F1 may be much better stuff, and really fast car! with all the pit stop strategies! :)
Raja Sen answers, I agree, and I'm all for more teams entering F1!


mp1 asked,  Why dont all drivers are given the same car then asked to compete , then only we can see who is the best . Some poor chap like NK is driving a car that like bullok cart in front of Ferari's . this is not a fair comptetion
Sumit Rajwade answers, He he. Thats like asking too much once single tyre is pushed ahead. Imagine single tyre, single car -- whats left to compete on? The overall race will be boring. The excitement today is definitely due to cars performing different over curves or straights.


mclaren asked, I dont like bringing this, but here we go... what do u guys think of JB? will he ever win? :-) i think he is far better than his results, but needs a good car... would love to see him partner alonso in mclaren next yr. what say?
Raja Sen answers, I think JB's a very good driver, but he's not a Champ, by any standards. His performance yesterday was ridiculous. He needs to be more aggressive. He's very efficient, but not a worldbeater. Maybe its a British driver phenomenon? Whatsay, David Coulthard?


Princess asked, What I am hearing from Sumit and Raja is that Renault have put up a better car, is that right? Strange, I recall reading that Renault's budget is what, one-fourth of Ferrari. So is it the machine, or the man behind the machine? What wins?
Raja Sen answers, First off, Renault's nowhere near as poor as you think :) And Formula One is about the man, the machine, the technique, the strategy, and the impulses. This isn't just about driving fast. Alonso deserved his win last year. This year, he seems to be running far ahead too. Just because the Renault is blindingly fast doesn't take anything away from his achievements.


Nithya asked, What does everyone feel about the pace of McLaren ? I think they're a bit down on the Renaults. And surely, the Renaults are lucky chaps. Aren't they ? I couldnt believe this when Alonso called Kimi as one lucky .... imagine the amount of luck Alonso has every season.
Raja Sen answers, Very true, Nithya. Alonso is truly leading a bloody charmed life. Last year Kimi was the best driver on the circuit, but it ended up a 'what if' championship dream for him.


Sid asked, Get back..Mika...he is the only one among Michael's contemparories that will find a place in formula one history...none of the current lot has it
Raja Sen answers, ah yes, Mika, of course. But Alonso is amazingly talented too. And, head-to-head with Fernando, I'd always say Kimi's a 'better' driver. Webber has potential. And aren't we ALL excited by Nico Rosberg??


raj asked, what went wrong with button in last few minutes , was it machanical fault or overpower from ENGINE to make renault's Fisi lag behind?
Sumit Rajwade answers, Raj, its a very tough thing to answer. It seems his engine got heated up. In the overall race, he did not skid on the greens or collided with anyone to have a problem of this kind. Seems most likely he went faster to stay ahead of the following car and in the end heated and fired his engine. -- really unfortunate though.


kimi asked, Haha.. till now I thought Kimi used to loose the race in the last lap, but now Button joined the club
Raja Sen answers, Mika pioneered that club. Now Kimi, Button, Rubens..


Nithya asked, Are we ever to get a F1 Racing track in India. Bernie Ecclestone is planning for a second track in Japan other than Suzuka. Its a lot of investment, but can also bring tourism into the country. Publicity too.
Raja Sen answers, Chandrababu Naidu was very gung-ho about the idea, but it would really be wasteful to squander such a massive amount of resources. Maybe later.. We hope.


mclaren fan asked, hi people..i was one of the lucky person to see the grandprix in melbourne
Raja Sen answers, heya fan :) enjoyed the Aussie experience? What was it like?


button asked, I cannot believe that Torro Roso won their point
Raja Sen answers, Yeah the guys must be thrilled and incredulous themselves :)


button asked, Any answers on my question, why Scott Speed was fined and stripped of his one point?
Sumit Rajwade answers, Speed overtook when the yellow flag was on. SC (safety car) means there can not be any overtake. He did not follow the rule, thus was fined and his points were taken away.


jaunpablofan asked, With V8s, slower cars, less technology - the FIA is turning F1 into F3 and removing the spectacle and special factor of F1 - your thoughts?
Raja Sen answers, I agree. I think the cars shouldn't be made to slow down as much. F1 is about the speed.


Schumi asked, Why isn't Red Bull and the likes able to win with v10 engine, even though Ferrari et all has V8?
Raja Sen answers, because it isn't just about the engine capacity. Several factors -- chassis, aerodynamics, torque, et al -- matter. Also, the V10s are restricted by a rev-limiter, which makes them function almost like a V8. Except they have more torque.


tifosi asked, well what do u think are ferrari's chances of winning the world championship this year...either the drivers' or the constructors' title?
Raja Sen answers, Well, I'm insane - and going to root for Schumi forever : ) I think he can pick up the driver's championship if he shows a tremendous resurgence in Europe --- and if that lucky Spaniard has a couple of non-finishes.


button asked, Raja, got you.... Its not Torro Roso, But RBR who got the point due to the Scott Speed incident
Raja Sen answers, but(ton) Speed was stripped of his point, my friend. Refer to Sumit's last answer :D


abhi asked,  who is quicker kimi or alonso?
Sumit Rajwade answers, With their respective cars, Alonso. With raw skill, I think Kimi will prove himself as a better and a faster driver.


Princess asked, Raja, I believe Renault is the best on the circuit today, sorry if I conveyed the impression that I thought it was a poor car. And I think Alonso simply rocks! While on the subject, why do I get the impression this chatroom is skewed in favour of Schumi!?!?
Raja Sen answers, Princess, Alonso does rock. I just personally believe Kimi rocks harder, and is just unfortunate. As for chatrooms, *grin* that's inevitable. He's bigger than the sport, so EVERYONE thinks he's amazing. It's like Tiger Woods or Michael Jordan. Why, you don't like him?


tifosi asked, well RS, what do u feel ferrari needs 2 do 2 recapture its old days of GLORY??
Raja Sen answers, needs to keep slogging away. they CAN do it, of course. It's just a matter of time before they make the technological breakthrough. It could still happen, mid-season this year. Otherwise, if MS is in the mood, then next year could be brilliant with him and Kimi driving Ferraris :D


Manjunath asked, Will ferrari ever turn to michellin tyres?????
Raja Sen answers, very very unlikely.


Nithya asked, Will schumi quit this season end ? Obviously he would like to leave on a high, but it might take atleast 2 seasons for Ferrari to reach their heights. So Schumi cant really hold on till that I guess.
Raja Sen answers, The thing is that he'll race as long as he enjoys himself. If it'll take 2 seasons for the car to hit peak again, and he's feeling up to it (he is the fittest driver out there), he might very well continue.


Biju asked,  Do you think Massa is a good selection for Ferrari ?
Sumit Rajwade answers, Biju, I think its a perfect logical move to take. After being a test driver at Ferrari, he went to Sauber and flourished there. I think its a good add to the team.


tifosi asked, well i think it wld b a dream come true 2 c iceman-kimi n the legendary - MS 2gether in a single team. I cant stop my adrenaline from pumping up rite now itself....team orders then.....ANY TAKERS??
Raja Sen answers, no. even Ross Brawn wouldn't dare ask Kimi to move over. It'll be superb to see those two pushing each other up the grid. The rest of the cars will have to stay ten seconds back and enjoy ringside seats as these two joust it out.


Gaurav asked, Anyone who believes that the best formula1 era was Schumi VS Hakinen which turned very personal when both mclaren and ferrari used their second drivers in every was possible to ensure that the main driver wins. To me that was the best formula 1 period!!!! What do u say??????????
Raja Sen answers, Gaurav, it was a tremendous period, truly! I used to love qualifying, with each of them going within .001 sec of each other again and again. Fabulous stuff, and truly one of the great racing rivalries of all time.


mclaren asked, team orders won't work with kimi :-) he knows only one thing... race and race hard! will be good to see them together, i can bet kimi will start slow relative to MS and eventually catch him and get ahead in the season... want to take me on? :-)
Raja Sen answers, sure, you're on :D


Schumi asked, How would the race be with MS and Kimi both in Ferrari as is the speculation for next year??? Whom do you think will be the winner?
Sumit Rajwade answers, More than who being the winner. If Kimi and MS teams up, it will be fun to see the best combination of perfection and aggresiveness. But its tough to say how will they gel well as a team.


Nithya asked, I agree with Gaurav. Schumi, Mika contests were really great. But beyond that there weren't much fights happening behind. I remember once Alexander Wurz being side stopped by both the drivers
Raja Sen answers, I enjoyed Schumi-Hill a lot as well. And if Kimi's car manages to finish some races, Kimi-Alonso would be one for the books as well. Nothing in the league of Prost-Senna, though! :D


Princess asked, What's going to happen on April 23 Raja/Sumit? Any bets? I am putting my money on Alonso/Renault, of course:D
Sumit Rajwade answers, I will finish the pre-match analysis and post my bets on Friday. Watch for the same on http://f1.rediffiland.com/


Princess asked, What's going to happen on April 23 Raja/Sumit? Any bets? I am putting my money on Alonso/Renault, of course:D
Raja Sen answers, aaah, so we're betting now. San Marino. My drivers to watch: Michael, Ralf (!!!), Nico, Villeneuve.


Biju asked, Hi Sumit, I don't think that is a good move because after 3 race Massa ended without a single point. Ferrari should go for another option so that they can fight for constructor championship
Sumit Rajwade answers, Too early to say this. I think its best to wait and see his performance in Europe this year.


Nithya asked, What do we all think will happen on the second driving slot for McLaren in 2007. Will it be Kimi or Juan Pablo. I think Juan is a nice chap, but his share of bad luck continues way back from 2005. Kimi has demonstrated his class but there are rumours he's talk to Honda, replacing Button
Raja Sen answers, Kimi better leave McLaren. He's too good for a firm now notorious for lack of reliability.


tifosi asked, hey RS wht do u think is so spl abt finns - keke rosberg, hakkinen, raikonnen n now rosberg(german ya i no but with finnish origins)tht they make such COOL racing drivers??
Raja Sen answers, tried their vodka? ;)


Nithya asked, What do we all think will happen on the second driving slot for McLaren in 2007. Will it be Kimi or Juan Pablo. I think Juan is a nice chap, but his share of bad luck continues way back from 2005. Kimi has demonstrated his class but there are rumours he's talk to Honda, replacing Button
Sumit Rajwade answers, Tough to say at this point. But they might try and get Roseberg. He really sounds promising with his current performance beginning in coming years.


Karan asked, Hello Mr.Raja, Team Renault is doing very well under Flavio Briatore in last two years, Ferrari is facing lot of problems with tyres and engine and ferraris new recruit Massa is just like last years Baricehello. Mclaren is doing well with the two aggressive pilots Kimi and Montoya. By seeing all this you still think Ferrai has chances in Imola and other upcoming circuits ???
Raja Sen answers, Hi Karan. McLaren is doing strictly okay; they are capable of much more. Yes, Renault is FAR ahead but Ferrari fans never say die. Right???


Manjunath asked, What's the problem with ferrari??????? Why are they not able to make it??????
Sumit Rajwade answers, They are using their winning model, but the rest have advanced as well. Also, bridgestone tyres. They do get warmed up slower to get to the high speed.


gokul asked, whos better mika or kimi
Raja Sen answers, kimi is startlingly fast, but, unfortunately, he hasn't WON enough races to be compared to the two-time World Champion yet. A good driver is able to not just catch up and take the lead, but stay in the Number One car and soak up the pressure consistently. So it's too premature a comparison.


Advay asked, I feel Alonso and Kimi are the two tough drivers on any day as these guys can change the scene in few minutes unlike MS... i dont think Ferrari can get a podium place untill they take pole position... Massa and MS havent produced stunning results in last 3 races... ?
Raja Sen answers, you didn't think Bahrain was good for MS?


gokul asked, but one thing they share is bad luck
Raja Sen answers, well, that's not completely true either. Mika had great luck to win the championship from Eddie Irvine after MS broke his leg mid-season


button asked, I really want to see Rosberg on the podium. He got the potential
Sumit Rajwade answers, Yeah. He does have a great potential. Al right everyone. Its time to say good bye for now.See you soon. We will keep posting updates on our blog about F1 @ http://f1.rediffiland.com/ -- I will sign off now. It was nice chatting to you. Take care and have a nice week.


Gaurav asked, Almost Time... Predict 1,2 & 3 for 2006 season................now.......
Raja Sen answers, alright, here's what I'm betting (hoping) for: MS, Alonso, Kimi, Button. There. :) Okay guys, been great chatting with you lot. We'll catch up again right after San Marino. Cheers.