Sunday 28 March 2010

Button Claims Win in Melbourne

Vettel and Webber did not get their boring race and as predicted, the weather played its part in the excitement. Alonso found himself facing the wrong way on turn one after cutting across Jenson Button's Mclaren. The safety car was also called on before the end of the first lap following a nasty crash caused by a front wing failure to Kobayashi's Sauber.

The critics, as usual had got it wrong and the race gave the fans the excitement they wanted. The Red Bull cars were very fast, but on the challenging track with changing conditions they were kept in check. Vettel will find it particulary difficult to bounce back after spinning out whilst leading.

Jenson Button had the lead handed to him on a plate now looks very comfortable in his new team.

Saturday 27 March 2010

Vettel on Pole in Melbourne

Click on Map for larger view

As predicted, Red Bull blew away the opposition to claim both places on the front row in Melbourne earlier today. Sebastian Vettel beat team-mate and local hero Mark Webber to his second pole position of the year, leaving Alonso and Button on row two. The surprise result was Lewis Hamilton who qualified in a lowly 11th place and well off the pace.

The first 3 corners of the Albert Park track will be critical on lap one with a high risk of an incident on turn one. Hamilton gets to choose tyres, but he will be in the middle of the pack as they scramble through the tight first turn. Add to this a 33% chance of rain and a safety car becomes a real possibility. The forecast is for drizzle which may mean a safety car start. Ironically this will bring the cars to turn one even quicker after release.

One thing is clear; the Red Bull boys should clear any excitement behind. Both drivers are very confident and hoping for a boring race, let’s hope they don’t get their way!

1st Mark Webber
2nd Jenson Button
3rd Sebastian Vettel

Tuesday 16 March 2010

Ferrari Win in Bahrain, but Red Bull Lay Down the Gauntlet

Spaniard Fernando Alonso placed himself among the legends of Ferrari F1 History by winning his first grand prix for the Italian team, beating team-mate Felipe Massa. The first race of the new 2010 season got off to what can only be described as a processional pace after a bit of excitement in the first couple of corners.

A combination of tyre care, fuel economy engine management meant that drivers settled down into what appeared to be a demonstration run. Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel maintained a comfortable lead until a cracked exhaust near the end of the race demoted him to fourth place. Both Vettel and team-mate Mark Webber had an excellent race. They may not have any silverware, or even many points under the new scoring system, but they have demonstrated that they had the fastest cars on the grid. There is no doubt that Vettel would have won, without the problem and Mark Webber’s lowly 8th place finish hides the fact that he was faster than both Schumacher and Button when behind them. However, he just lacked the pace to overtake.

The next race in Australia is a bit of a lottery, but the teams have some serious work to do by Sepang if they are going to stop the Red Bull qualifying on the front row and getting away from them on the first lap.
Hamilton will be very happy with third place, but will not be complacent. The Mclarens were a bit heavy on the brakes.

Lotus were the only newcomers to make it to the end of the race, but both Virgin and Hispania have reason to be proud of their performance

1st Fernado Alonso Ferrari
2nd Felipe Massa Ferrari
3rd Lewis Hamilton McLaren

Saturday 13 March 2010

Vettel on Pole at Bahrain

Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel qualified in front of Ferrari's Felipe Massa at the first qualifying session of 2010.

The results are significant as they represent an accurate reflection of relative performance. All the cars will have been set up for maximum performance with no option to under fill the tank to sneak a higher qualifying place. All cars will now be given a full tank of fuel which will have to last until the end of the race. Each of the top ten will be required to keep their qualifying tyres until they opt to stop. Interestingly most have opted for the softer compound which will have already given up their optimum performance.

This race is all about tyres. Those on softs may opt to pit very soon for the favoured harder compound. Those further down the grid have a tyre option for the start. Those on the harder option may find themselves catapulted to the front as those on the softer compounds loose their performance and pit. However, when these teams choose to use the softer tyres they will at least have the performance advantage of new tyres not enjoyed by the top ten earlier in the race.

Result Prediction:
Haven't got a clue!!

Sunday 7 March 2010

Confirmed Teams and Drivers for 2010

Click on the table for a larger image

The teams and drivers were formally confirmed by the FIA for the 2010 season on 3 March 2010. Teams also have reserve and test drivers that are not listed. The USF1 team registered for the 2010 season, but it was confirmed by the FIa that they would not be in a position to compete this year.

Bahrain Preview

The day that we have been waiting for is almost here. It seems a long time since Jenson Button crossed the line in the penultimate race of the 2009 season to claim the championship. We were at first rather confused by the lack of action on Jenson Button's part to negotiate a new contract with Brawn. However all was revealed and Jenson now partners Lewis Hamilton at Mclaren and I look forward to that competition as much as the main event.

So Brawn became Mercedes Mercedes parted company with Mclaren but still supply engines. BMW pulled out to be reborn as Sauber, four completely new teams signed up and Michael Schumacher rejoined. Wow!

At this point I would normally be predicting the result but it is difficult to call without having seen any competitive action. What I can say is that the pole position will be a good indicator of who has the fastest car and then it is down to who is best at protecting the tyres. Shumacher can’t be ruled out to be up there at the front, but he has been out of an F1 car for a long time, so don’t expect to see him competitive from day one. Button and Hamilton will be closely matched and therefore at risk of taking each other out on the first lap. There are also a few new boys out there who will forget they are in F1 cars when they get in the mix, and we could see cars flying off everywhere on lap one. This will be less of a problem now that Bahrain is the first race of the season.
....So let the games begin!