For the first time since 2013, a Formula 1 race will be held at the German Nürburgring this weekend. Race driver Tom Coronel answers five questions about the Grand Prix of the Eifel.
Let’s start with last week’s big news: what do you think about Honda’s departure from Red Bull at the end of 2021? A bad thing for Max Verstappen?
Tom Coronel: “Of course this is a bit of a bummer, because Red Bull and Honda were an ideal combination. There was good chemistry and both companies had the same goal.”
What about Red Bull?
“A Mercedes or Ferrari engine is out of the question and Red Bull has left Renault with a clashing divorce. But chances are that both sides are now condemned to each other again. That can only work if team bosses Christian Horner and Cyril Abiteboul put their egos aside. and talk everything out. “
“But why wouldn’t Renault want to work with Red Bull again? If you can’t become world champion yourself, then you better make sure that a team with your engine becomes champion.”
“Another option is a new engine supplier to join Formula 1. I do not rule out Mugen taking over from Honda. That brand belongs to the son of the founder of Honda. He can take over his father’s estate quite easily. It would be a shame for Honda to just throw away all investments in the Formula 1 engine after 2021. “
Last five winner F1 race at Nürburgring
- 2013: Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull)
- 2011: Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes)
- 2009: Mark Webber (Red Bull)
- 2007: Fernando Alonso (McLaren)
- 2006: Michael Schumacher (Ferrari)
You lived in Japan for five years. Do you think the next year and a half will go out like a candle for Honda and Red Bull?
“No, that chance is really 0.0 percent. Japanese never walk away with their tail between their legs. They will remain seriously involved until the end, you can count on that with the Japanese.”
“The partnership will not go out overnight, but with a big bang. The budget and the number of man-hours put into the engine will not change. The engine updates will continue as planned. Honda will do everything it can to improve the next one and a half. year to perform at the top. “
Car driver Tom Coronel has a lot of experience at the Nürburgring. (Photo: Getty Images)
Enough about Honda. Let’s talk about the Nürburgring. You have raced there many times, what do you expect from a Formula 1 race in Germany in October?
“I had a race there last weekend. And at the end of September I took part in the 24 Hours of the Nürburgring. That race had to be stopped for eight hours because it was very foggy.”
“In that respect it is always haunted in the Eifel. It can rain or be very cold. Last week it was really cold, at night it was only 4 degrees. Then you really can’t get the tires working and that is possible. make the race a lot more interesting. Formula 1 is used to racing with 25 degrees and a nice sun, but that’s a bit different here. “
“Moreover, the teams do not have any current data from this circuit, because there has not been a race in Formula 1 for so long. As a result, they will have to search a lot for the adjustment and the balance. Moreover, a lot of rain is forecast.”
“All these factors can ensure that Verstappen will make it very difficult for Mercedes here. It is also a circuit with a lot medium speedcorners, that suits the Red Bull very well.
Map of the Nürburgring. (Image: Nürburgring)
It will be a special race for Kimi Räikkönen anyway, he breaks the record set by Rubens Barrichello with his 323rd Grand Prix participation.
“I think he’s a wonderful personality. A lot of other drivers are those marketing dolls, who thank the great audience and sponsors every race. Räikkönen just says what he thinks and Formula 1 needs that kind of character.”
“And make no mistake, there are a lot of people jealous of Räikkönen. He is still driving Formula 1 at the age of 40, which is a boyhood dream for all men.”