In Depth

F1 engines sound 's***' says Vettel, as Button weighs in

If you don't like it race something else, says Button, but Vettel complains that there is more noise in a bar

THE lack of noise being generated by Formula 1's new V6 engines is being made up for by the deafening volume of complaints coming from their detractors, who continue to rail against the lack of decibels being produced by the cars.

 As Mercedes pair Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg came out on top in the first two practice sessions at the Malaysian Grand Prix at Sepang, reigning world champion Sebastian Vettel weighed into the debate, describing the sound of the new engines as "s***" and calling it a "shame". Reflecting on events in Australia a fortnight ago, when he was forced out of the race early, Vettel said: "I was on the pit wall during the race, and it is quieter than in a bar. I think for the fans it is not good. I think F1 has to be spectacular – and the sound is one of the most important things." He is not alone notes the Daily Telegraph. "The 26 year-old's assessment echoes the view of the sport's octogenarian supremo, Bernie Ecclestone, who has opposed the introduction of the new hybrid engines since they were mooted." And Vettel's intervention could be significant. "His opinion will carry weight among millions of fans around the world trying to come to terms with this technological leap that appears to have appealed to no one but the legislators," says The Times.  

The organisers of the Australian Grand Prix have already threatened to sue over the lack of noise, and said the new whining engines could "kill the golden goose". But not everyone is against the engines. Nico Rosberg, winner of the Australian Grand Prix, said the change was "good for F1". Although his opinion could be to do with his sudden elevation to title contender. "Not to question Rosberg and Vettel's sincerity, but it is amazing how a driver's view of a regulation is so often aligned to the relative performance of their car," muses Daniel Johnson in the Telegraph. It fell to veteran McLaren driver Jenson Button, now the oldest man on the grid, to urge the drivers to concentrate on the racing rather than the roar. "When you win a race you win a race, it doesn't matter what it sounds like. If [the engines] were silent you wouldn't care," he said. "Go and race something else if you are not happy."

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