F1 Rumors - news ahead of the headlines

October 4th 1998:

Salo to stay with Arrows?

Arrows man Mika Salo looks increasingly likely to remain at the British team next year despite rumours suggesting that the Finn could be joining the new Honda team to test their new cars. It is said that Salo is highly rated within Arrows but he could be replaced in favour of a ‘pay-driver’ to bring much-needed funds to the team.

Getting to Grips with Prost


The Prost team have been on a steep learning curve this year. Even now, they are finding huge improvements on their cars, indicating just how much more they need to get on top of to get to the front of the grid. But things are looking up: recent tests have shown significant improvements, whilst designs for the 1999 car are looking very promising. Whilst the new improvements are not expected to put Prost with this years top runners, you may look for improvements at the Japanese Grand Prix...


Renault to Return?


Could the French motor manufacturer stage a comeback? Louis Schweitzer has admitted on French radio that a return to Formula 1 could be on the cards for Renault. The company's president said it has an ambition to, "return one day to F1, to win. We have a new team of engineers, a new generation, which is working to develop an engine that will return a competitive advantage to Renault. The decision to return will depend on technology."

Sources suggest that the company could be aiming at a return to Formula 1 as early as the 2000, possibly with Benetton. BAR is also understood to be chasing the possibility of any possibility of a Renault engine deal.

We also know that when Renault pulled out, they were intending to start work on a new technology for engines - best guesses were either 'very hot running' or 'air cooled': the net effect of either would be to massively reduce or eliminate the radiator space required for water cooling (though oil cooling would still be necessary), hence significantly reducing the the cars drag from the reduction in side pod frontal area requirements, making it significantly faster in a straight line. This would have some compromising effect on cornering speeds.

It was thought that the banning of expensive materials and other regulation changes put paid to that plan, but maybe they have another one up their sleeves?

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