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2009 Calendar and drivers line-up

The 2009 calendar was issued today, and bye-bye Montreal! The Canadian GP will be replaced by the Abu Dhabi GP, that will be placed at the end of the season, while the former Canada GP date will be taken by the Turkish GP (correct to race there in early June rather than in August as it used to be).

I'm sorry to lose Montreal, but rather because it was a tradition and because of the perfect timing in Europe-Africa, on Sunday evening, than for the track itself. Even though if Abu Dhabi is like Valencia and Singapore tracks, I'd rather keep Montreal 1000 times. Has any of you guys got any clue about indiscretions on the Abu Dhabi new track? Tilke again?

Moreover, the opener in Melbourne will be only on March 29, the season will be more squeezed at the beginning and at the end, with a 4 week break between Hungaroring and Valencia. 4 times there will be races in 2 successive weekends: Australia-Malaysia, Great Britain-France (why do they keep inverting nearly every year?), Europe-Belgium and Japan-China.
German GP should be in Nuerburgring, Japanese in Suzuka. No idea if French GP will be still in Magny Cours, I guess it probably will.
I don't know if it is correct to close at a new circuit, I feel decisive race should be in a well known track.

As for the drivers' line-up, with BMW confirming its duo yesterday, it should be, as far as I know:
TOIT: Kimi-Massa
McLaren: Clewlis-Kovy
Toyota: Trulli?-Glock
BMW: Heidfeld-Kubica
Williams: Rosberg-Nakajima
Renault: Alonso- ?
Force India: Sutil?-Fisichella?
Honda: Button-Barrichello?
Red Bull: Webber-Vettel
Toro Rosso: Bourdais?-Piquet?

Therefore, 5 or 6 seats still at odds (even though probably only 2 or 3 of them will be actually left free).


  • Montreal getting canned really pisses me off, though it does force me to have to go to Europe to see a race now. As for Abu Dhabi, I assume that it will be Tilke, so likely a crap track, hope not as bad as Valencia.
  • The layout for the Yas Island Circuit is shown in the Link below

    Abu Dhabi Circuit layout
  • This is like the nail in the coffin! It really sucks.
    The sad part is that alot of people are not ready to put a fight as last time. If they do not come in 2009, I seriously doubt it that F1 will ever comeback to Montreal.
    Since attending my first race in 1981, I have a hard time believing that something I really enjoyed and took for granted, is no longer there!!
    I guess the new world order dictates it as such.
  • Big big surprises from the FIA Council: beside Canada, also France will disappear from the calendar, so reduced to 17 events.
    Moreover, China is moved to be the 3rd event of the season on 19 April, while Australia and Malaysia will start at 5pm local time, Japan at 3pm. Singapore will remain the night race.
    British GP shall be held in Donington, and if Donington won't be ready, will be cancelled as well!
    No confirmations as yet that the Japanese GP will be in Suzuka and the German GP in Nuerburgring (as should be dictated by the rotation rule introduced from last year).

    As for the drivers, Ferdy signed for Renault until 2010, and I'm ready to bet that this means that next year he'll be again a contender for the title.

    Rubens wants to stay, which sounds like a joke, but actually this year he's been much better than Jenson. Might be an idea for Honda to sign him for one more year and get Bruno Senna to make the necessary experience to take his debut in 2010.

    Then there is of course the new rule of the 3-race duration for engines, that I leave to another thread........
  • Honda have already told Barrichello that he could look elsewhere for a drive. Outperforming the lacklustre Button is hardly a reason to keep him.
    I think there will be trend in F1 now to go for young turks. If Senna beats Button next year he can look for employment elsewhwere as well.
    There are probably only 2 other seats available both at STR. Fisichella seems extremely lucky to keep his seat at Force India and makes me wonder how much insight into the sport Mallya has.
  • Fisico did OK, considering. But otherwise I agree, why would Mallya go for him again?

    Senna is almost ready, but there are doubts still - I reckon Grosjean is better, but he definitely needs another year. I wish F1 was still a sort of place for the likes of Maldonado, fast but wild, lots to learn but exciting. Alas, those days are gone.
  • As usual ghosty you are spot on. Grsosjean and Maldonado are both prodigies. Can't understand why they have not been given chances. Lets see who the boys from Faenza plump for!
  • Toro Rosso confirmed Bourdais, even though Bruno Senna announced that he's leaving GP2 hoping for a seat in Toro Rosso. But Toro Rosso has already signed Buemi, so maybe Bruno will just have a tester role, hoping to replace French Seb in case results are disppointing.

    I think it's a good move for Faenza to keep Bourdais, he was just unlucky last year, and in Monza, without the electrical problems at the start, he would have ended the race an easy second. I'd bet he'll show his value this year.

    Meanwhile, hopes for Honda team to be taken over are smaller and smaller, less than 7 weeks from the season opener.
    Button is now seriously risking to stay out (unless he replaces Piquet at Renault, but he does not have a good relationship with Flav, they parted badly in 2002). But he does not seem to be worried, and gets comforted by his new Argentinian-Japanese girlfriend - I've seen the pictures, really not bad......

    To date, drivers' line-up is the following:
    Mc Laren: 1 Hamilton, 2 Kovy
    Ferrari: 3 Massa, 4 Kimi
    Honda: 5 Heidfeld, 6 Kubica
    Renault: 7 Alonso, 8 Piquet(?)
    Toyota: 9 Trulli, 10 Glock
    Toro Rosso: 11 Bourdais, 12 Buemi
    Red Bull: 14 Webber, 15 Vettel
    Williams: 16 Rosberg, 17 Nakajima
    Force India: 18 Fisichella, 19 Sutil

    Anyone knows about the idea teams to be able to run a third car? I heard nothing more about this, and I deem now it's too late to introduce it.

    Concerning the calendar, anyone knows if the British GP will be still in Silverstone or in Donington? I know for sure that Donington will host the event from 2010. Is Silverstone managing to give adequate guarantees? Or does the GP still risk to be cancelled? Simon might know something more precise.

    Instead, I recently read that the German GP will be at Nuerburgring, in accordance with the alternation rule valid also for Japan (Suzuka this year). In November, I had instead read it was gonna be in Hockenheim, and that surprised me.
  • Anyone knows about the idea teams to be able to run a third car? I heard nothing more about this, and I deem now it's too late to introduce it.
    I read that this is no longer the only option under the new rules. Apparently Mosley is considering filling up the field with GP2 cars.
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