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Old 21 Sep 2005, 08:20 (Ref:1412881)   #1
sonic
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Who is the best Talent spotting team owner currently in F1?

Following on from BAR's news about recruiting 5 hot new talents...

Which team owner actually does the best job of bringing the best new drivers into F1?

I'm not really a fan of his but my vote is Flav.

Alonso, Trulli, Webber, and Koveleinen is a Pretty good track record. He gets them drives and results too.
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Old 21 Sep 2005, 08:30 (Ref:1412893)   #2
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I agree, but over the last 15 years I would say that Eddie Jordan was the best (both Shumi's and Fisi).
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Old 21 Sep 2005, 09:00 (Ref:1412911)   #3
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Well Williams wasn't too bad. He brought in Hill, Coulthard and Montoya to name 3.
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Old 21 Sep 2005, 09:57 (Ref:1412953)   #4
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Well Williams wasn't too bad. He brought in Hill, Coulthard and Montoya to name 3.
Jenson Button, that Canadian bloke…
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Old 21 Sep 2005, 09:58 (Ref:1412954)   #5
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Peter Sauber brought Frentzen, Räikkönen and Massa. A race winner, a championship contender and a 2006 Ferrari driver
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Old 21 Sep 2005, 11:31 (Ref:1413006)   #6
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Frank is very good at spotting drivers whose talents aren't fully appreciated by the wider F1 community, having not previously had a competitive car, and getting the best out of them. Flavio's record is perhaps the most impressive of the current guys overall though, especially if Kovalainen succeeds in F1 - then again, this time next year we mgiht be adding Nico Rosberg to the Williams list.
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Old 21 Sep 2005, 14:08 (Ref:1413114)   #7
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Currently I think that both Sir Frank Williams and Flavio Briatori are very good at spotting new talent..Williams are testing a young German driver in Spain I believe.
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Old 21 Sep 2005, 17:12 (Ref:1413253)   #8
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Briatori is probably the best allround, but I have to hand the best ever capture to Peter Sauber for Kimi.
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Old 21 Sep 2005, 17:25 (Ref:1413265)   #9
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the young german in spain is sebastian vettel, who has been good in the f3 euroseries, altho he is a red bull driver. his contract is actually with bmw who have evidently prodded williams into testing him while they still have their hands on a half decent car

i think flavio briatore has also picked up a number of not quite so good drivers, so his hit rate is about 30%. it's just with his scheme, you can work out whether a driver's good over a course of years rather than a few tests...
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Old 21 Sep 2005, 19:46 (Ref:1413348)   #10
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Eddie Irvine was always good at spotting talent and as recently been seen in the paddock doing just that,but what's that got to do with F1?

His he a team owner i hear you cry.......remains to be seen.
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Old 22 Sep 2005, 00:24 (Ref:1413565)   #11
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Originally Posted by bella
the young german in spain is sebastian vettel, who has been good in the f3 euroseries, altho he is a red bull driver. his contract is actually with bmw who have evidently prodded williams into testing him while they still have their hands on a half decent car

i think flavio briatore has also picked up a number of not quite so good drivers, so his hit rate is about 30%. it's just with his scheme, you can work out whether a driver's good over a course of years rather than a few tests...
Yes you are right bella! Isn't that strange that this young chap is signed to BMW and he is testing for Williams?
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Old 22 Sep 2005, 13:22 (Ref:1413954)   #12
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Presumably either BMW are paying for the test, or they are willing to sell the driver's contract to Williams (for them to place in GP2 next year, for example).

On the original topic,Frank's record takes some beating. Of all the drivers who've won world championships for him, only Prost had ever won a race before joining (Mansell did in between his 2 Williams spells).
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Old 23 Sep 2005, 04:44 (Ref:1414495)   #13
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i must say that Frank and Flavio are both strong in this area.

However, there are some glaring errors made by both men. Either in terms of judging their talent, or in squeezing the best from their potential.

Ie Frank took on the likes of Ralf Schumacher, Zinardi, wanted to take on an old Mika Hakkinen, didn't opt for Nick Heidfeld, didn't manage to get the best from Montoya...

Flavio? The way he snatches every half-decent young kid into his "program", there would definitely be a handful who would turn out good enough.
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Old 23 Sep 2005, 07:55 (Ref:1414554)   #14
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Ie Frank took on the likes of Ralf Schumacher, Zinardi, wanted to take on an old Mika Hakkinen, didn't opt for Nick Heidfeld, didn't manage to get the best from Montoya...
In Ralf's first year at Williams he was brilliant. He took that old ill-handling Supatec-powered lump to places it should never have been, and almost won at Nurburgring.

Zanardi was/is a highly talented driver. Formula One and Williams did not quite suit him, but there are countless examples that demonstrate his talent.

Who knows if Mika Hakkinen would have worked out or not? Suggesting he would not have is pure unqualified speculation.

Didn't opt for Heidfeld? Hang on ......... who has been Webber's team mate all season?

And I would say Frank's talent-spotting credentials are enhanced by the presence of Montoya.
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Old 23 Sep 2005, 08:35 (Ref:1414580)   #15
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Historically it would be Enzo Ferrari followed by Colin Chapman. (Or Ferrari and Lotus to follow the threads actual title)

Of the current form I'd say Williams, I was not surprised from a personal point of view that it was Frank not BAR who spotted AD was fast in the Friday sessions last year when they all visited Bahrain for the first time.

I was told by a good scource in the International Karting scene that Flavio went 'shopping' for drivers there in the mid 90's...and just asked them "Who's good?" and was told Trulli, Fisichella...Oh and keep an eye on a young junior called Alonso for the future. Not sure where he noticed Webber tho?...Anyone here know?

McLaren are the worst in my opinion at talent spotting dispite their win rate. Although RDs chance involvement in Martin Hines's 'Champions of the Future' karting series did help point RDs attention at a junior Lewis Hamilton, but I think I'd credit Martin Hines and Zip Karts more for that bit of talent spotting!

In fact the last F1 podium at SPA were all products of junior and senior International karting...so perhaps the top 'TEAM talent spotters' are in the Karting paddocks these days and not in F1 at all! Which as we all know is all about technology, politics, business, and money and very little to do with actual driver talent...Now where did I leave those grapes?...Doh!...they're going all sour!
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Old 23 Sep 2005, 08:37 (Ref:1414584)   #16
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It was enhanced by Zanardi too. That didn't work out for a few reasons. I think rather than questioning the talent spotting credentials there maybe the ability to get the best out of all drivers can be questioned.
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Old 23 Sep 2005, 08:57 (Ref:1414605)   #17
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I think Webber was spotted by Flav driving Sportscars...

He tested for Benetton in 2000-2001.. and he finished sports cars in 1999
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Old 24 Sep 2005, 14:39 (Ref:1415403)   #18
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mac, i've stated in my first line that Frank Williams is STRONG in this area.

I've recognised him to be one of the better men in this aspect. However, that doesn't mean he is always right in "spotting talents" or "applying talents".

We can't say he spotted talent in Zinardi, because he had already shown himself to be a talent (in other forms of racing). Williams did not discover that talent, and more importantly, they based his past experience to bring him into F1, which resulted in almost a horrible season.

Ralf was shown to have flashes of talent in his Jordan. Frank took him on.. it didn't work out. Similarly, was it Ron who openly claimed that only he could unlock the huge potential of Montoya (ie Frank can't). And HHF is a decent F1 driver (look at 99)..but it didn't pay off when he was at Williams did it? Similarly, drivers who went into Williams (ie Jacques/Montoya claim that it took some time for them to convince the team to allow the drivers to voice their setup preferences). This perhaps indicate a less than ideal environment under Frank to develop the best of a driver.

That many drivers who could win was perhaps more of an indication of the quality of Williams car (ie see 96) which can win with a good driver (rather than exceptional driver).

As for Nick, Frank was initially bent on having Antonio Pizzonia...and sort of signed Nick because of pressure from BMW. Even Frank was highly uncertain after signing Nick, and refused to let Pizzaboy race in another series because he thought that Nick may not be good enough and have to be replaced. It's only by mid-season that Frank admitted that Nick performed well.

I don't understand how that indicates Frank is a good spotting of talent through that.

But yes, Frank is still a good person at judging drivers.

I'd say that the person who discovered Kimi is really good..somebody untested/unknown who turn out to be a superstar. It hasnt really happened since Michael Schumacher.
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Old 24 Sep 2005, 14:56 (Ref:1415412)   #19
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I'd say that the person who discovered Kimi is really good..somebody untested/unknown who turn out to be a superstar. It hasnt really happened since Michael Schumacher.
IIRC, Kimi's manager persuaded Peter Sauber to give Kimi a test as a prize for winning the Formula Renault championship in 2000. Raikkonen performed so well at the test that he was given a drive for 2001.
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Old 24 Sep 2005, 15:53 (Ref:1415440)   #20
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so i guess that makes Kimi's manager a genius!
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