July 12, 2010

Karma's a bitch but...

...to take a contrarian view, wasn't Mark Webber being a bit of a drama queen?

I mean, it's not like his car was that much slower than Vettel's in qualifying and while in the end the way the British GP played out made for a fantastic story with the whole revenge thing, it's not like he actually beat Vettel to more than the first corner. Vettel was taken out by Hamilton who once again touched a Red Bull ( must bring him luck, however this time, since it was not his car that was damaged, there were no cries of "Vettel ran into me").
Christian Horner, I thought, made the most logical decision as a team manager: faced with a choice he gave the best available equipment to the driver who could potentially gain the most.

In any case, Webber drove a great race in a car Sakon Yamamoto might have scored a podium with and Hamilton was once again in the right position to take full advantage. Vettel's learned a few things and Alonso... well, his race was lost in the first couple of yards. Was it him or the clutch, who knows but if he had gotten off the line he would never have been behind a really slow Kubica .

The penalty? You were watching the race, how long did it take you to form an opinion as to his having to give the position back? I'm guessing not as long as it took race control once again (from lap 17 to lap 31). Of course , what are the odds British stewards at the British Grand Prix would choose to give Alonso a penalty for gaining an advantage on a car that was not in the race anymore .... whatever. Alonso should not have been in that position to begin with, you all saw how quickly he was able to pull away from Kubica once passed. Yet another Ferrari lost opportunity.

It was a good race for Williams, Barrichello must be relishing his thrashing of Herr Schumacher. Force Indias were very impressive, they seem to have especially good traction coming out of corners making them very hard to pass, even for a Red Bull.

But the real star Sunday was the circuit, Silverstone is just fantastic, the crowd great. The new additions work very well and the race,though not that much happened up front, was very entertaining. Well done BRDC!

end of post


  1. I think Mark played the whole situation off track very well (re Drama Queen). Being angry will ensure that he either gets the good parts, or gets credit for doing well with the slow parts. He gets the underdog support from the fans. Also a good mindf*ck for Vettel who isn't the strongest guy mentally (why didn't he bother to try overtaking until the safety car?). Only negative for Mark is that he is highlighting the factions in the team, which I am sure the team doesn't like, but what has he got to lose?

    I think Horners mistake was not taking the wing off Mark, but not ensuring the drivers knew the decision making process in advance. No matter what he did he was going to piss off Vettel, Webber or Newey (who insisted on running the wing on someone's car). I would want to keep Newey happy first, but the drivers should have known the process (in their contracts).

  2. I wouldn't trust Nigel Mansell to make me toast never mind steward an F1 race.

  3. Can't really understand what Webber says on the radio at the end of the race, can anyone transcribe pls?

  4. Re Alonso; yes he should have conceded the place back to Kubica, but as he took the decision not to, surely a fairer penalty from the stewards would be to demote him 1 place. You gain a place illegally, you lose a place. An eye for an eye...

  5. Well that was a pretty inflammatory piece! I think the notion of British bias against Alonso is a bit rich - as the commentators quite rightly said during the race, the guest steward is more of a PR stunt than an attempt to actually get a driver's view of an incident. And Jean Todt, who basically has the final word in any given decision, used to run Scuderia Ferrari.

    As for Red Bull - if there is an actual admission that The Australian Gentleman IS the number two driver, then none of this controversy would abound. After all, even the great Sir Stirling would often ask for one team mate's chassis to be fitted with another's engine for him to drive. Because it was clear that he was the number 1 driver, nobody could, or would, complain.

  6. Got to disagree with you AC, but Webber was untouchable. Vettel was lucky just to stay on the lead lap (from what I gather he was closer to Webber than 3rd place was).

    Webber and Hammo were far and away the best drivers out there. It was patently unfair to take the wing off Webber, and if Webber was overreacting you mustn't have seen any of Vettel's tantrums this year.

  7. Webber at the end says "Not bad for a #2 driver" and "cheers mates" which is australian for..... :)

    then he asks who is going to be on the podium from the team to receive the constructor trophy and names someone, not sure if he was the gentleman who eventually was on there. Ironically this too was Australian for ....

  8. Talking about Karma, Alonso's seems to have been in need of an upgrade. :-) His Alphaness hasn't been very uplifting for the team as a whole.

    This year in F1 has been the year of the Safety/Pace Cars making the results quite unpredictable. Considering how the whole Piquet Saga developed with that "planned" Safety Car, this is just too sweet to be true to have Alonso losing sure points due to "unplanned" Safety Cars.

    RedBull are once again losing to themselves the way Ferrari lost that championship to Hamilton that year of many mistakes.

    With so many points at stake every race, McLaren have done the best job of collecting much needed points to try and nail the titles at the end of the season.

  9. The problem is the way in which the team handled the situation. James Allen's blog says "Webber and his engineer were not sold on the new wing by the time the decision was taken". So Webber might not have even wanted the wing anyway (until it was taken from him).

    The team could have asked drivers if the preferred the new wing and went from there. They might not have need to have this argument. Of course Webber might have said he did want it just to mess with Vettel's mind.

    All this situation has done is create ill-will the team. As we saw at the start of the race neither driver will give way to the other and it is likely we will see more of what we saw in Turkey.

  10. @James Ash
    Regarding "I think the notion of British bias against Alonso is a bit rich". If someone with no other knowledge of F1 were to happen upon a British blog or comments section of a British newspaper website, they would undoubtedly believe that Alonso had legally changed his name to "Cheating Dago Tw*t" (or "Whinging Dago Tw*t"). I'm not joking - one of those phrases is used routinely in nearly any British discussion of the man. To suggest there isn't still a huge amount of animosity directed from a lot of British fans (at least) towards Alonso is "a bit rich"...

    That said, Alonso's move was clearly a violation of the rules. Kubica's subsequent retirement added an odd twist where the stewards *might* have applied some leniency. But to *expect* that to happen, particularly at an "away game" was a startlingly stupid decision on Ferrari's part. Or, perhaps, lack of decision...

  11. once again Alonso f***ed up the start and paid the price.
    That's not the Fernando we used to see in the last few years, no surprise british media tagged him as a whiner since he actually is one.
    i wonder what the Scuderia Ferrari reactions would have been if it was hamilton overtaking alonso on that precise situation...
    oh no wait, it happened actually in SPA 2008, when Ham despite giving the position back to Raikkonen was still penalized with some 20 or so seconds, finishing third. Remarkably Raikkonen, who played the Kubica role, also went off making it impossible for Hamilton to give the position back (again, just don't ask me why he should have done so but anyway...)
    Massa "won" the race and i can't remember the Scuderia whining about that...
    The truth is that the Scuderia is a "Win or Whine" team, like it has always been, no wonder then...

  12. once again Alonso f***ed up the start and paid the price.
    That's not the Fernando we used to see in the last few years, no surprise british media tagged him as a whiner since he actually is one.
    i wonder what the Scuderia Ferrari reactions would have been if it was hamilton overtaking alonso on that precise situation...

  13. It is petty of Webber to behave like that.
    I like the one quote he said, "If I would have known things would be like this I wouldn't have signed". Really?!

    I forget how extremely talented he is and how Ferrari/McLaren were fighting for his contract /Sarcasm. He is actually surprised he is a number 2 driver?! Maybe his agent should go over his entire career with him.

    Horner should tell this guy to sit down, shut up, and deal with it. It was a clear decision. It IS a team after all.

  14. @anonymous. I imagine you must have been super critical of Lewisite Hamlton for not giving himself a drive through in Valencia? Seriously all this tired old bellyaching about Ferrari is so silly, as if none of the other teams would immediately complain if they saw a chance. It happens in all racing, at all levels. He'll even CG got screwed when a competitor who was being lapped claimed to be passed under yellow (video showed it not to be true). And this was in a club race!!

    I think M hit the right note, a strong personality like Alonso needs an equally strong balance on the pit wall. They all should know better that they were never going to get away with that incident at Silverstone

    I think M hit the right note, a st

  15. The Wing situation was probably the straw that broke the camel's back. After Istanbul and who knows what else goes behind closed doors within the team. Mark making it a public thing has earned him sentiment from the fans and he will avoid the fate of Coulthard and Barrichello.

    It doesn't matter that in the old days there were clear #1 and #2 drivers. It's the past. Fans today want to everyone race and they want it to be a fair fight. We're the fans, we make it possible for F1 to be what it is, they have to give us what we want, how we want it.

  16. No mention of Kobayashi?? In my opinion he drove a great race and is maturing quite well as an F1 driver.

    As for Redbull, I think there going to keep treating Webber as the number two guy and Vettel as number one. It seems to only motivate Webber to win which he proves race after race(especially this one).

  17. "Vettel was taken out by Hamilton who once again touched a Red Bull ( must bring him luck, however this time, since it was not his car that was damaged, there were no cries of "Vettel ran into me").

    WOW.....the "Hami-hating" is strong once again. Maybe if Vettel's driving wasn't so erratic then it could have been a Red Bull 1-2. For the second race in a row he collects Hamilton but this time his car is damaged.

    His woes are just more evidence of karma at work.

  18. @M:

    Very true, Brits are not exactly enamoured with the whinging Dago tw@t (sic).

    But last time I checked, they weren't making the marshalling decisions.

    For me, at least, motorsport should be about chivalry and glamour, with a good dose of self-deprecating humour thrown in - things Alonso has never displayed to the public. That's why the man on the street probably prefers The Australian Gentleman to The German Schoolboy. And it's the same reason you'd probably prefer to go for a drink with Jenson instead of Lewis.

  19. Fourteen laps! It took them fourteen laps to hand out a penalty, and if that wasn't bad enough, they waited until the safety car came out to award it! I almost did not watch this race after the joke of motor racing that was the last race weekend. The BBC and Eddie Jordan are just the icing on the cake. This series has become stupid.

    Someone above (seriously who is still posting anonymously?) mentioned how the safety cars have made the races much more random this year. That is because it's much harder to strategize during the race without refueling. If the safety car brings you bad luck instead of good, it's much harder to make up that lost time without refueling. I think it was Whitmarsh who said recently that F1 is a meritocracy; the fans want to see the fast cars win, and the lack of refueling tends to make the lucky cars win. I was in favor of banning refueling when the season started, but after seeing this season unfold I see why it was important.


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