Grand Prix 2012 Chinese Grand Prix Practice, Qualifying & Race Discussion

Il_leone

Champion Elect
From a Mclaren point of view, they made mistakes with both drivers today costing them the fight for victory, but they were small mistakes that was magnified by the tight grand prix. Lewis was pitted too early in the first stop, which meant he had to move through about 4 more cars than Jenson who pitted later. Then, that pit stop for Jenson was 6 seconds longer than normal, but was enough to put him behind 4 cars he should not have been.

Lewis actually called for the pit stop but he had trouble passing Massa who put up a stubborn defence it has to be said
 

Il_leone

Champion Elect
I've never rated him. Always seen him as a Nick Heidfeld type who was comfy bringing the car home in 4th and 5th but usually cracked when he had any chance of winning a race. Was expecting him to go backwards today and he didn't!

Sometimes it nice to be proved wrong though so I doth my cap to Nico.
there were doubts about Nico as some started labelling him the new Nick Heidfeld and Schumacher was getting closer to him and ahead of him in the previous races. This race would have lifted his confidence and belief now
 
J

johnnoble1990

Guest
Lewis actually called for the pit stop but he had trouble passing Massa who put up a stubborn defence it has to be said
Working out where he would fit back in is impossible for Lewis to do on track. Mclaren should've been smarter. The longer he stayed out, the less people he'd need to overtake.
 

Il_leone

Champion Elect
Working out where he would fit back in is impossible for Lewis to do on track. Mclaren should've been smarter. The longer he stayed out, the less people he'd need to overtake.

It was Lewis' call if he said he felt his tyres were gone then they had no choice plus any longer he could ended up behind Webber who made up a lot of places by using pit stop pointing to the poor straightline speed of the Red Bull specifically
 

Il_leone

Champion Elect
Big change around at Williams - they are using those Renault engines really well and both drivers are exceeding my expectations.

They've got a decent designer in Mike Coughlan running that team.despite whatever your misgivings about him at Mclaren.

On top of that the Renault engines with some experienced Renault engineers is definitely helping given their fruitful relations of previous years

Would be nice to see them rather than Lotus or Red Bull deliver the first Renault engine win this season
 

Il_leone

Champion Elect
I think Massa drove okay this week actually, but his strategy kind of failed.
Massa drove well and did not surrender only to Alonso for team orders

but really the Ferrari is a poor car...it is slower than Williams and Sauber !
 

f1fansp

Points Scorer
It was Lewis' call if he said he felt his tyres were gone then they had no choice plus any longer he could ended up behind Webber who made up a lot of places by using pit stop pointing to the poor straightline speed of the Red Bull specifically
Indeed, Webber pitted early each time following his very early first stop, and after the last stop, Webber was ahead, and Hamilton only got ahead by overtaking (on similarly aged tyres) rather than by strategy
 

Brogan

🦶 Leg end
Staff member
A thoroughly enjoyable race.

Great win for Nico.

An excellent save for Hamilton considering his grid penalty, crucially he made to make some important overtakes to get 3rd; he'll be very heartened leaving here leading the WDC.
If not for traffic I think both McLarens had a chance of winning

Webber continues to have the broadest smile in the paddock, passing his team mate fair and square in the dying stages.

A terrible result for Raikkonen - they should have brought him in for fresh tyres long before they hit the cliff.

Williams with a double points finish.and Grosjean manages to finally finish a race.
 

siffert_fan

Too old to watch the Asian races live.
Contributor
If the rest of the season contiues like this race, it may be epic. Without the tyre problem Kimi would have been well up, and the same could be said for Schumacher. I wouldn't be surprised if both of them win at least one race this year.

Vettel came through lots of traffic with his nose clean, so hopefully that will be the end of the rubbish comments about his ability to drive anywhere but in the lead in and in the fastest car.

Well done to Nico. It will be fascinating to see if the old adage in F1 about once having claimed your maiden victory, others usually follow soon afterwards.
 

Kewee

Race Winner
to Alonso he needs to be seen as the favoured son of the team. Yes he backs up with his relentless and formidable work ethic but seeing his teammate get attention ahead of him riles him.

Ferrari may say both drivers are treated equally but they would not dare to upset Alonso and would order Massa to get out of his way at first moment... Mark Hughes did mention in 2010 that after Melbourne Massa not moving over for Alonso even though was race 2 was going to spell trouble and it sure did with his engine blow out frustrations in Malaysia when he simply floored the smoky engine when it went

Even in china when Alonso sneakily cut the grass to pass Massa in the pits
He actually already had his front wheels ahead of Massa's before they reached the pit lane. Check out the replays, they're still on Utube. :)
 

The Artist.....

Champion Elect
I just had a question for you all- (I may have missed this on screen),but I've just been looking at the pitstop summaries. Charles Pic drove through the pits on lap 48- taking 13.981seconds. Presumably this was a drive-through, but I can't remember what for (or even seeing anything about it)... Anyone know?
 

tranquility2k9

Podium Finisher
Interesting that Sky Sports F1 picked up on a radio message Vettel gave to his team on the slowing-down lap:- http://www1.skysports.com/formula-1/news/12433/7674912/Vettel-slams-straightline-speed

Vettel:- "And we had absolutely no straight-line speed whatsoever the whole race. Unbelievable. People pulling away...ridiculous."

Looks like he is losing his cool a little. Although Red Bull's top speed wasn't great, it wasn't much worse than the others in this race and all drivers found it difficult to overtake on the main straight, plus he did a 2 stopper and thus had more worn tyres than most people around him.

All in all I thought that was a fantastic race, it was interesting at the start but came alive in the 2nd half with everything changing in the last few laps - I don't think you can ask for better than that. Also, it actually turned out that in a strange way the DRS made it even harder to pass on the back straight because those in-front used it and everyone hit the limiter, but I think this therefore encouraged overtaking in other places and as JB said on the forum, more clever use of KERS.

I don't think Rosberg would have been caught today even in a straight fight with the McLarens, although it would have been mighty close had for example Lewis, started in 2nd on the grid and had a clear track. I also do not believe McLaren particularly got their strategy wrong. The main problem today was that in the first half of the race especially, it proved much harder to overtake than predicted and so the top teams in faster cars (McLaren and Red Bull) pitted earlier to try and get the undercut. Usually this would work because they'd be on fresh tyres and would be able to get past those in-front on older tyres. But as we saw, even when drivers were on much older tyres it was not easy and spending 3 or 4 laps behind a driver allows those in-front to pull away. In hindsight, possibly McLaren could have kept their drivers out a little longer, but I doubt it'd have changed much. I think they made a mistake in putting on soft tyres in the 2nd stint when everyone else was on mediums, because the mediums looked quicker, especially on the McLaren.

One final thing I have to say is other than the obvious Rosberg, I think Hamilton is possibly driver of the day for me. He made a good start and showed strong pace though out. He didn't really show any signs of his tyres degrading more than others but due to him starting further back he was always in traffic and I thought he judged it very well when to overtake and when not to. At first I thought he was being a little tentative but then he came alive at the end. I think the Lewis of old, or at least the one of last year, would have got through the field quicker but may have ended up crashing and even if he got through quicker I don't think he'd of finished above 3rd today.

What I think he has shown this weekend is that he was able to match Button and didn't fall into massive trouble with tyres so if he is able to start ahead of his team mate on the grid (which he generally does) then he has a very good chance of a few wins now. I do think he is genuinely more conservative with his overtaking this year and that is a slight shame on the one hand, but I think he maybe needs to build up a bit of confidence from all the accidents last year. I think more recently Jenson has gone for more daring moves and got through the field quicker at times, but this is just because his confidence is there. The problem for Lewis is one crash could start a snowball effect and all the media would jump in on it. I personally feel some of the other drivers are aware of this and are purposely (but completely within their right) being ultra hard on track when it comes to letting Hamilton overtake because they know he's explicitly trying to avoid an accident.
 

Il_leone

Champion Elect
Interesting that Sky Sports F1 picked up on a radio message Vettel gave to his team on the slowing-down lap:- http://www1.skysports.com/formula-1/news/12433/7674912/Vettel-slams-straightline-speed

Vettel:- "And we had absolutely no straight-line speed whatsoever the whole race. Unbelievable. People pulling away...ridiculous."


I said the Red Bull would be suckers down the straight and they were. I don;t think Vettel even with the DRS could pass anyone in front of him...

his set up has too much down force which is great for aero reliant tracks like Barcelona but not good on a track where top speed is an equaliser like it was for Mercedes which I thought would be one of their stronger races

Vettel is not happy with the car and it is giving the team a headache given Webber is enjoying the new set up

race pace in clear they are quick but stuck behind another car their aero is too sensitive.... I think Red Bull passed most cars through pit stops compared to the other teams

It can;t be all the Renault engine as the Williams and Lotus are faster... the Red Bull I think are the 2nd slowest in a straight ahead of HRT ! Adrian Newey has got some real thinking to do
 

Brogan

🦶 Leg end
Staff member
Please don't block quote whole posts, especially ones as big as that.
Just crop the part you're responding to.
 

Il_leone

Champion Elect
I should add the double DRS did not make it too easy to pass which was a good thing ...it was just about the right place for those to have a dare and the other passes were done after the start line in between the esses although Hamilton loves turn 6

It would have been interesting to see if Button and Mclaren would have got close to Rosberg and the difference in straightline speed despite using the same engine


a strange tactic by Vettel to use 2 stops given his teammate did 3 last year and came from further back to get onto the podium. Unless Seb used all his tyres too quickly
 
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