2010

End of year awards 2010
The inaugural Chequered Flag end of year awards were handed out with Lewis Hamilton and Jorge Lorenzo the top winners!

New three-year regulations confirmed for Formula 1
With the confirmation of radical new rules in Formula 1 this column looks at the new engine regulations in more detail as well as investigating whether the introduction of moveable rear wings for 2011 will aid overtaking or whether there were better solutions to the overtaking problem.

Pivotal few weeks ahead for Formula 1
This column gives an insight into a radical overhaul of Formula 1’s technical regulations that was expected to be announced within days of publication. The new rules will see an emphasis on changing engine technology to more fuel efficient methods. The future of the Concorde Agreement, the document that regulates Formula 1, also comes under scrutiny.

The season never ends with F1 looking towards 2011
There is no offseason in motorsport. This point was emphasised once more with preparation for 2011 is already underway with testing taking place for teams to get some understanding of the Pirelli tyres before Christmas.

A year on the edge: key moments of F1 2010
With the end of one of the most entralling seasons of recent years comes time to recount some of the most significant moments of 2010

Vettel takes the title as Ferrari lose focus
Victory at the final race of the season in Abu Dhabi ensured Sebastian Vettel became the youngest world champion in history. While the German was superb for Red Bull the decision making processes on the Ferrari pitwall contributed to their title downfall

Red Bull wins battle, but could have lost the war
After Red Bull clinched their first Constructors’ title following a dominant one-two finish in Brazil it was inevitable that the decision to keep Mark Webber behind Sebastian Vettel would be scrutinised

Epic F1 title fight nearing completion
Five drivers head to the Brazilian Grand Prix with title hopes still alive. This column takes a look at how the varying degrees of hope for each driver.

Team need to evaluate title tactics after dramatic race
After months of speculation the Korean Grand Prix took place this weekend. The weekend started well with teams and drivers all enthusiastic about the circuit but the unfinished circuit would come in for criticism during the race. Rain started to fall prior to the start but with drainage still to be fully completed there was nowhere for the rain to go. After a one hour delay the race restarted with Fernando Alonso taking a fortuitous win.

F1 heads to Korea with contenders still to be separated
The Korean Grand Prix was finally confirmed just days before the teams were due to arrive. The new circuit looks set to challenge the teams and drivers but the main focus of attention will be on the title contenders. There are still five drivers in the hunt for the world championship and this weekend will be very telling in the fight. McLaren have struggled of late and another poor showing will end the challenges of Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button. The build up to this race also featured the surprise announcement that Russia will host a Grand Prix in the near future. The deal will see Winter Olympic host city Sochi feature on the F1 calendar from 2014 onwards.

Vettel thrust back into title contention
Sebastian Vettel’s Suzuka win has placed his title destiny back in his own hands. The German has had a trying season at times but his recent performances in Singapore and Japan have been of the highest caliber. With just three races remaining he now finds himself firmly back in title contention. Robert Kubica’s Japanese GP ended very early on with a wheel failure, the Renault driver though showed once more why he is one of the leading lights of 2010 with a stunning lap in qualifying.

Webber will feel the pressure in Japan
Previewing the Japanese Grand Prix this column looks at the challenge that will face Mark Webber in his bid to become world champion. The Australian has been in sparkling form this season but recent races have seen him make daring strategic decisions, will these cost him dear? Title rivals such as Fernando Alonso have close down his points lead during recent races but with time running out in 2010 each race becomes even more crucial. The Korean Grand Prix also comes under scrutiny. The race has been in doubt for some time and is still yet to pass track inspection

Alonso can Sing(apore) when he’s winning
Alonso continued on from Monza success by winning the Singapore Grand Prix ahead of Sebastian Vettel. Even though Red Bull finished the race with both drivers standing on the podium question marks arose from their strategic decisions with both cars

Title battle to go downto the wire
With just five races remaining there are still five drivers that have a realistic chance of winning the title. Read on to find out the hopes of each of these drivers

Monza victory revitalises Alonso’s title hopes
Fernando Alonso won a tense Italian Grand Prix after a race long duel with Jenson Button. The victory showed that Alonso could still be a title contender

MotoGP mourns the loss of Tomizawa
The motorsport world was stunned by the death of Moto2 racer Shoya Tomizawa at Misano. Winner of the inaugural race in the category Tomizawa had started to build up a legion of fans.

Vettel: Have Spa and hismentality cost title?
Sebastian Vettel’s race at Spa was marred by a series of poor decisions that overshadowed a terrific performance by Lewis Hamilton and Mark Webber at the front of the field. Vettel’s mentality and approach to racing came under harsh scrutiny

Holiday season is over as F1 gets back to work with weekend’s Belgium Grand Prix
With the enforced summer break over Formula 1 was set to return to action with the Belgian Grand Prix. This column feature a preview for Spa, with an in depth analysis of how the championship contenders would each be able to find a way to compete at the sharp end during this race.

Lorenzo makes it seven as he opens up a 77 point lead
Jorge Lorenzo’s domination of MotoGP in 2010 continued during the Czech Grand Prix when the Spaniard was once more vicotrious. He has now opened a 77 points lead at the top of the championship. Lorenzo’s teammate, Valentino Rossi, finally announced that he would be leaving Yamaha at season’s end to move to Ducati.

McLaren face uphill struggle in highly competitive F1 battle
One of the most competitive season in recent Formula 1 history enters its summer break and with only seven races to go the teams face a terrific challenge to win the title. No team faces a greater struggle than McLaren who have been off the pace in recent races.

Outside of Formula 1 it is worth noting the potential of a pair of Irish motorcyclist, Jonathan Rea and Eugene Laverty, who are both showcasing their abilities on the world stage

Vettel gifts victory and title lead to team-mate Webber
Sebastian Vettel had been leading the Hungarian Grand Prix but a safety car lapse by the young German cost him dear and allowed Mark Webber to retake the lead of the drivers world championship. Aside from the intra team battle at Red Bull their innovative car was once more the centre of a technical storm as the paddock sought to ban their flexing front wing

Alonso was first past the flag but there were no winners at Sunday’s German Grand Prix
The German Grand Prix ended in controversy when team orders from Ferrari once more came to the fore. Felipe Massa led from the first corner but with the Brazilian closing in on a race win, on the first anniversary of his Hungarian crash, a call from the pit wall was made that ensured Fernando Alonso emerged victorious

The Doctor stars on his early return at German Grand Prix
Valentino Rossi made a surprise return to MotoGP during the German Grand Prix when Casey Stoner finally announced his move to Honda from Ducati for 2011

Red Bull gives you wings…but Webber has his wings clipped
This column looked at the issues arising from Red Bull’s decision to take Mark Webber’s new front wing and give it to his teammate, Sebastian Vettel

Barcelona and Yamaha become “Lorenzo Land” as Rossi finds a new home
Jorge Lorenzo may have won the Catalan Grand Prix but with news filtering through the MotoGP paddock that Ducati and Valentino Rossi were set to join forces for the 2011 season the focus of attention that weekend was on his teammate, even though he was still absent due to injury

Vettel streets ahead in Valencia but his teammate steals the limelight
The Valancian Grand Prix marked a turnaround for Sebastian Vettel as he won for the first time since the Malaysian Grand Prix, the race though will long be remembered for Mark Webber’s crash with the Lotus of Heikki Kovalainen

Silverstone impresses as Formula 1 prepares to head for Valencia
Silverstone was the centre of attention as it hosted its first MotoGP since 1986. Fans were anxious to see how the layout would fare as it was also due to host Formula 1 just a matter of weeks later. This column also previewed the Valencia Grand Prix

Canada left fans breathless but Hamilton left his rivals ‘tyred’
The Canadian Grand Prix was one of the seasons best with Lewis Hamilton breaking Red Bull’s stanglehold on pole positions. The race was expected to be a challenge for the former world champion with tyres playing a key role

The Doctor needed an operation but now Yamaha’s health is called into question
The most shocking moment of the 2010 season occurred at Mugello when Valentino Rossi crashed and broke his leg during practice. This column dealt with the potential impact on Yamaha and whom they could replace the nine times world champion with

Red Bull drivers lock horns and show team’s frailties
The Turkish Grand Prix was one of the most controversial of the season with Sebastian Vettel crashing into Mark Webber while trying to take the lead. Team orders came into focus after Red Bull missed out on a one-two finish and had to settle for Mark Webber only finishing third in a race they should have comfortably won

Webber needs to cement his position
With the Turkish Grand Prix upcoming it was crucial for Mark Webber to continue his dominant form from Spain and Monaco with another strong showing. The Australian had put a poor start to the year behind him and knew that he was now a genuine title contender:

Street fighting man Webber dominates in Monaco
Mark Webber achieved won the Monaco Grand Prix with a superb performance that potentially changed the dynamics within the Red Bull team. At the end of the race Michael Schumacher passed Fernando Alonso when confusion reigned as a result of new safety car regulations, for more information read on!

Webber gets off the Mark in Spain as F1 looks forward to Monaco
In the Spanish Grand Prix Mark Webber won for the first time in 2010 with a dominant performance, with the Monaco Grand Prix taking place the next weekend this column also previewed the most glamorous race of the season

Optimism abounds as Formula 1 heads back to Europe at weekend
This column offered a full preview of the upcoming Spanish Grand Prix

The Formula 1 ground war is set to begin
The first Chequered Flag column dealt with the importance that motorsport has played in Ireland’s North East region. The new Formula 1 season was now firmly underway with the Chinese  having taken place, and offered the perfect chance to review the season thus far2010

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