F1 »

Less than magnificent seven for KERS Down Under

The early benefits of Formula 1's new KERS (Kinetic Energy Recovery Systems) technology have been called into question after five of the seven cars using it in Melbourne dropped out before the final qualifying phase of Q3 – and the best-placed could manage no higher than seventh.

Only Ferrari, McLaren-Mercedes, Renault and BMW-Sauber star Nick Heidfeld elected to fit the controversial energy-saving devices to their cars Down Under – and, perhaps tellingly, they were amongst the earliest to be dumped out of contention.

Nelsinho Piquet went first – a lowly 17th in Q1 – followed by former world champion team-mate Fernando Alonso (twelfth), Heidfeld (eleventh) and McLaren pairing Heikki Kovalainen and Lewis Hamilton (14th and 15th respectively) all in Q2.

The only KERS-equipped drivers to make it through to the top ten shoot-out were Ferrari duo Felipe Massa and Kimi Raikkonen, and even they languished in the lower half of the Q3 order at the chequered flag.

By contrast, Robert Kubica in the other BMW – a man who chose not to run KERS because of his greater weight than team-mate Heidfeld and the negative effect that would likely produce – qualified fifth, and the Pole admitted that the system 'can have a big influence'...for good and for bad.

“I think KERS can have a big influence, if you have it on-board or not,” the Pole reflected, “so I think this is the main key. I'm not expecting more overtaking due to the aerodynamic changes, just maybe if some cars in front of you are not using KERS and you have additional power. Then it might be a bit easier, but it's still quite difficult, I think.”

In conserving kinetic energy, the devices convert that into power 'boosts' that can be used for between six and seven seconds every lap – an initiative that it is hoped will increase passing opportunities in the top flight.


Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Felipe Massa (BRA) Ferrari , Barcelona Test 9-12th, March 2009
Who will replace Nico Rosberg at Mercedes?
Who will replace Nico Rosberg at Mercedes?
French Grand Prix at Paul Ricard
Lando Norris, McLaren Autosport BRDC Awards [Credit: Martyn Pass PR]
Kimi Raikkonen tests the 2017 F1 tyres in Abu Dhabi [credit: Pirelli]
Lewis Hamilton tests the 2017 F1 tyres in Abu Dhabi [credit: Pirelli]
Kimi Raikkonen tests the 2017 F1 tyres in Abu Dhabi [credit: Pirelli]
Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Pirelli 2017 tyre test [Credit: Pirelli]
27.11.2016 - Race, Celebration, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016 and Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid race winner
27.11.2016 - Race, Celebration, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016 and Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid race winner
27.11.2016 - Race, Celebration, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016 and Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid race winner
27.11.2016 - Race, Celebration, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016 and Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid race winner
27.11.2016 - Race, Celebration, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016 and Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid race winner
27.11.2016 - Race, Celebration, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016 and Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid race winner
27.11.2016 - Race, Celebration, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016 and Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid race winner
27.11.2016 - Race, Celebration, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016 and Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid race winner
27.11.2016 - Race, Celebration, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016 and Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid race winner

Join the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register before adding your comments.

Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.


2Pac - Unregistered

March 28, 2009 4:08 PM

Don't be so quick to dismiss KERS as a "stupid" idea. like any new technology it will take time for the systems to develop and become really beneficial to the teams. Allan mentioned the batteries not being "green" but remember that KERS doesn't dictate the use of batteries, it's just the solution most of the teams have chosen to use. I believe Williams are using a mechanical flywheel system as opposed to batteries as a means of energy storage. and to answer the question any system that stores energy that would otherwise be wasted and provides additional power without the need to burn additional fossil fuels is by definition "green".



© 1999 - 2016 Crash Media Group

The total or partial reproduction of text, photographs or illustrations is not permitted in any form.