July 11, 2012
2012 British GP: Not bad for the #2 driver, again.
Maybe, like me, you suffered through another awful tape delayed Grand Prix broadcast on Fox. Watching their intro, which turned drivers into cartoon characters (El Lobo vs the Iceman Cometh vs the Mystery), you wonder why a network would insist on believing the F1 audience is made up entirely of morons. You would not know it by what you saw occasionally between all the commercials but there was an interesting race happening at Silverstone.
I so wish there was a complete, multichannel digital package one could purchase so one would be free of inanities one is forced to hear from the now very long in the tooth commentary team.... or perhaps Fox should strap Varscha, Hobbs and Matchett to biplanes like BBC did with Eddie Jordan, Coulthard and Humphreys.
Interesting race, the big surprise of course was that it was dry. In the end it came down to Ferrari not being able to work the option tires as well as Red Bull. Webber, drove a great race, keeping cool until it was his moment to pounce two laps from the end.
The F2012 is almost as good as the RB8 now, an amazing effort for a team who's car was seen as a dog at the beginning of the season. There is a bit of a mystery as to why Massa's option tires on full tanks lasted longer than Alonso's options on empty ones. Driving style or just inconsistency? Nobody is criticizing Pirelli but I've heard some grumbling.
I wonder how the bosses at Red Bull are taking Webber being ahead of Vettel? His contract was renewed for a year, which perhaps is how 35 year old drivers get treated these days even is they are multiple winners...
Revelation, Lotus. Now if they can only get Grosjean and Raikkonen not to throw away their races... but their win is coming, just like Romain's awesome pass on Rosberg. That kid's got some talent, someone find him a brain and he's the real deal.
Speaking of brains.... Maldonado. There is no doubt in my mind he did NOT slip on cold tires but widened his line, defending what was already gone. Money may buy you speed but not necessarily smarts.
Massa had his best race in ages and I think went a long way towards the possibility of a contract extension with Ferrari.
Maybe the biggest disappointment again were the Mclarens. Super fast in a straight line (some 10km/h faster than Ferrari and Red Bull) but with no traction and with an apparent inability to get heat into the tires, like last year's Ferrari. The eagle eyed among you may have noticed Hamilton after qualifying touching first his, then Alonso's tires.
Hamilton has called into question the whole design philosophy of the MP4-27, the only car without stepped nose (along with Marussia). It seems Mclaren is a bit lost right now, what with its drivers doing cartoon testing and aero improvements not improving the car. Interesting that an ex Mclaren man is at Ferrari and an ex Williams man is at Mclaren. Next thing you know Lewis will try to steal Kimi's seat!