Posts Tagged ‘china’

Another racy weekend in China

April 18th, 2010 No comments

Those people who declared Formula One dull and processional after the opening round in Bahrain must be eating their words now.

Today’s rain-splashed Chinese Grand Prix proved to be yet another exciting race with Jenson Button powering to his second victory of the season thanks to another successful tyre strategy. While team mate Lewis Hamilton made a sudden dive into the pits for intermediates, Button stayed out on slicks. Hamilton said:

Jenson made the better choice on the tyres. It wasn’t easy making the call when to change the tyres. I chose very late halfway around the last corner. Clearly it wasn’t the right choice.

But while it may have been the wrong decision, Hamilton again showed what an amazing talent he is by charging back through the field to finish second despite four pit stops.

And is it just me or is the quality of the stewards’ decisions much better this year? There was a mighty battle between Hamilton and Vettel as they both struggled to regain lost places; a battle that continued down the pit exit when Hamilton was released at virtually the same time as Vettel.

Hamilton got exuberantly sideways as he tried to dive in front of Sebastian and the German then proceeded to squeeze Hamilton perilously close to the wheel guns of the other pit crews.

In previous years this probably would have resulted in a post-race 25 second penalty or place drop, potentially altering the very result of the race itself. As it turned out the two drivers only got a stern talking to.

It seems the policy of having an experienced race driver to advise the stewards at each race is a big improvement.

There is now a mini holiday in F1 which is just as well as the eruption of Iceland’s Eyjafjallajoekull volcano continues to close European airspace. Until it reopens the teams are stuck in the Far East.

2010 Chinese Grand Prix Race Results

Pos Driver Team Grid Time Points
1 Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 5 1:46:42.163 25
2 Lewis Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes 6 +00:01.530 18
3 Nico Rosberg Mercedes GP 4 +00:09.484 15
4 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 3 +00:11.869 12
5 Robert Kubica Renault 8 +00:22.213 10
6 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1 +00:33.310 8
7 Vitaly Petrov Renault 14 +00:47.600 6
8 Mark Webber Red Bull-Renault 2 +00:52.172 4
9 Felipe Massa Ferrari 7 +00:57.796 2
10 Michael Schumacher Mercedes GP 9 +01:01.749 1
11 Adrian Sutil Force India-Mercedes 10 +01:02.874 0
12 Rubens Barrichello Williams-Cosworth 11 +01:03.665 0
13 Jaime Alguersuari Toro Rosso-Ferrari 12 +01:11.416 0
14 Heikki Kovalainen Lotus-Cosworth 21 lapped 0
15 Nico Hulkenberg Williams-Cosworth 16 lapped 0
16 Bruno Senna Hispania-Cosworth 23 lapped 0
17 Karun Chandhok Hispania-Cosworth 24 lapped 0
18 Jarno Trulli Lotus-Cosworth 20 retired, 26 laps 0
19 Lucas di Grassi Virgin-Cosworth 22 retired, 8 laps 0
20 Pedro de la Rosa BMW Sauber-Ferrari 17 retired, 7 laps 0
21 Sebastien Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari 13 crash, 1 laps 0
22 Kamui Kobayashi BMW Sauber-Ferrari 15 crash, 1 laps 0
23 Vitantonio Liuzzi Force India-Mercedes 18 crash, 1 laps 0
24 Timo Glock Virgin-Cosworth 19 retired, 1 laps 0

Image: Greg Baker/AP

Categories: 2010 Season Tags: ,

Prediction game: Round 3 results

April 22nd, 2009 2 comments

Red Bull One-Two, China, 2009Listening to the whinging of Renault’s Flavio Briatore you could be forgiven for thinking that the FIA had handed the Championship to Brawn GP by  ruling their double-decker diffuser legal but Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber proved that cars with ‘standard’ diffusers can still win races by taking a stunning one-two victory in China last weekend.

Even though the Brawn GP cars were carrying more fuel and were faster in qualifying, Vettel was flawless in the wet race conditions and Button could only manage third place with Barrichello behind him in fourth.

While no-one thought (correctly) the Red Cars would be a threat, Andrew was the only one to predict a podium for Vettel and so managed to narrow Sergio’s lead to three points.

Keep an eye out for the Round 4 post which will be going up soon!

Image: Getty

Categories: Prediction Game Tags:

China: Weight adjusted qualifying times

April 18th, 2009 No comments

Jarno Trulli, China, 2009Once again the established order is upset and and an exciting qualifying session in Shanghai ended with Sebastian Vettel putting in a blinding lap to take pole position for Red Bull. Fernando Alonso also surprised by putting his Renault alongside him on the front row.

But were those times really indicative of race pace or were their cars fueled light?

Well, thanks to the FIA now publishing the weights of all cars after qualifying we can figure it out for ourselves.  Below is a graph showing the actual lap times of the cars compared to their fuel-adjusted lap times.  Only the top ten are shown because any car that doesn’t make it into the third qualifying session may refuel before the race.

2009 Chinese GP Q3 (weight-adjusted)

We can see from the graph that the two Brawn GP cars are still fastest and Alonso and the two Red Bulls are fueled pretty light, although Vettel isn’t looking too bad.  Jarni Trulli could also be a threat if he gets a good start from the third row.

Categories: 2009 Season Tags: , ,

We don’t need no stinkin’ diffusers

April 18th, 2009 2 comments

Sebastian Vettel qualifies on pole, China, 2009Sebastian Vettel showed you can still go fast in Formula One without a fancy double-decker diffuser. While car designer Adrian Newey is back at the factory figuring out how to bolt a new back end onto the car, Vettel drove the RB5 to Red Bull’s first pole position in qualifying for Sunday’s Chinese Grand Prix.

Team mate Mark Webber also did well and almost looked like he was going to take pole but he will start third behind Fernando Alonso.  The Spaniard’s car was running with an interim diffuser although Renault decided not to use KERS.  In fact out of twenty cars, only three (Heidfeld’s BMW and the two McLarens) will be running a KERS device in the race.

For the first time this season there is no Brawn GP car on the front row with Barrichello starting from fourth and Jenson Button behind him in fifth.

Once Adrian Newey comes up with a new diffuser that fits the RB5 suspension, will Red Bull take over from Brawn GP as the team to beat?

2009 Chinese Grand Prix Qualifying Results

Pos Driver Team Time
1 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1:36.184
2 Fernando Alonso Renault 1:36.381
3 Mark Webber Red Bull-Renault 1:36.466
4 Rubens Barrichello Brawn-Mercedes 1:36.493
5 Jenson Button Brawn-Mercedes 1:36.532
6 Jarno Trulli Toyota 1:36.835
7 Nico Rosberg Williams-Toyota 1:37.397
8 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1:38.089
9 Lewis Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes 1:38.595
10 Sebastien Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1:39.321
11 Nick Heidfeld BMW Sauber 1:35.975
12 Heikki Kovalainen McLaren-Mercedes 1:36.032
13 Felipe Massa Ferrari 1:36.033
14 Kazuki Nakajima Williams-Toyota 1:36.193
15 Sebastien Bourdais Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1:36.906
16 Nelson Piquet Jr Renault 1:36.908
17 Robert Kubica BMW Sauber 1:36.966
18 Adrian Sutil Force India-Mercedes 1:37.669
19 Timo Glock Toyota 1:36.066
20 Giancarlo Fisichella Force India-Mercedes 1:37.672

Update: Timo Glock drops five places after a gearbox change.

Image: Getty

Categories: 2009 Season Tags: , , ,

McLaren try a new diffuser in China

April 17th, 2009 No comments

Lewis Hamilton, China, 2009McLaren made a return to the top of the time sheet in the first practice session for Sunday’s Chinese Formula One Grand Prix.  Thanks to a new ‘interim’ diffuser that McLaren have bolted onto Lewis Hamilton’s car, the reigning World Champion set the fastest time in first practice with team mate Heikki Kovalainen (running the old diffuser) fourth and the two Brawn GP cars sandwiched in between.

Hamilton couldn’t carry the pace through to the second session, though, where Button finished fastest ahead of Nico Rosberg’s Williams with Barrichello third fastest.  Even without fancy diffusers, the two Red Bulls of Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber were fourth and fifth.

Here are the times from the first two practice sessions:

First Practice

Pos Driver Team Time
1 Lewis Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes 1:37.334
2 Jenson Button Brawn-Mercedes 1:37.450
3 Rubens Barrichello Brawn-Mercedes 1:37.566
4 Heikki Kovalainen McLaren-Mercedes 1:37.672
5 Mark Webber Red Bull-Renault 1:37.752
6 Jarno Trulli Toyota 1:37.764
7 Nico Rosberg Williams-Toyota 1:37.860
8 Timo Glock Toyota 1:37.894
9 Fernando Alonso Renault 1:38.089
10 Sebastien Bourdais Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1:38.195
11 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1:38.223
12 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1:38.274
13 Sebastien Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1:38.307
14 Adrian Sutil Force India-Mercedes 1:38.319
15 Felipe Massa Ferrari 1:38.418
16 Nick Heidfeld BMW Sauber 1:38.456
17 Giancarlo Fisichella Force India-Mercedes 1:38.460
18 Robert Kubica BMW Sauber 1:38.463
19 Kazuki Nakajima Williams-Toyota 1:38.730
20 Nelson Piquet Jr Renault 1:38.825

Second Practice

Pos Driver Team Time
1 Jenson Button Brawn-Mercedes 1:35.679
2 Nico Rosberg Williams-Toyota 1:35.704
3 Rubens Barrichello Brawn-Mercedes 1:35.881
4 Mark Webber Red Bull-Renault 1:36.105
5 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1:36.167
6 Jarno Trulli Toyota 1:36.217
7 Kazuki Nakajima Williams-Toyota 1:36.377
8 Timo Glock Toyota 1:36.548
9 Heikki Kovalainen McLaren-Mercedes 1:36.674
10 Sebastien Bourdais Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1:36.800
11 Adrian Sutil Force India-Mercedes 1:36.829
12 Felipe Massa Ferrari 1:36.847
13 Lewis Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes 1:36.941
14 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1:37.054
15 Sebastien Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1:37.219
16 Nelson Piquet Jr Renault 1:37.273
17 Robert Kubica BMW Sauber 1:37.491
18 Nick Heidfeld BMW Sauber 1:37.544
19 Fernando Alonso Renault 1:37.638
20 Giancarlo Fisichella Force India-Mercedes 1:37.750

Image: McLaren

Categories: 2009 Season Tags: ,