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

Valencia........ :bored:

Even Abu Dhabi and Bahrain are more exciting in comparison. Valencia is the only grand prix on the calendar that I genuinley do not look forward to. It's dull, boring and hasn't provided an interesting race at all since its inception on the F1 calendar in 2008. Thankfully it won't be a regular feature in the future as it will be alternating with Barcelona in the future.

Going into the Grand Prix Lewis Hamilton is back as the Championship leader after becoming the 7th driver to win in 7 races with victory in the Canadian Grand Prix. After missing out on the podium in recent races he was back with vengeance after fighting back from starting second and being third with 10 laps to go but thanks to fresher tyres he made easy work of Vettel and Alonso in the latter laps who fell away after a gamble to one stop failed. In the end Roman Grosjean and Sergio Perez finished on the podium and it is testament to the unpredictably of 2012 that it wasn't the first time either of them have been on the podium this season.

From race to race no team has been consistently at the very front, in Spain it was Williams, in Monaco it was Red Bull and in Canada it was McLaren. Both Ferrari and Lotus have probably been the most consistent package over recent weeks but not enough to win races with podium places the highest they can manage, but considering the start to the season Ferrari made, that probably isn't a bad thing and Alonso is only 2 points off the championship leader with world champion Vettel just one point behind in third.

It's a complete reversal of 2011 as this time last year Hamilton left Canada with a world of problems after a DNF which involved a collision with team mate Button who went on to win one of the best races of his career passing Vettel on the last lap. But 12 months later Hamilton won the race with Button finishing a lapped 16th. What's worse for the 2009 champion is that was on merit as well and not down to any car failures or pit problems, it marks a horrid fall from grace after winning the opening race in Melbourne and an early run of podiums but now he is struggling to even get into Q3 and convert that into points finishes. Button appears clueless as to where the problem lies and it may not be a short term fix as the car isn't slow as Hamilton is currently proving. It could be already over as far as Button's title hopes are concerned as he is currently 43 points behind Hamilton and has roughly half the points total.

It is also interesting to note that Button was further behind the leader last season and he was second in the championship, while at the moment he lies in 8th behind both Lotus drivers who are the only front running drivers yet to win a race (excluding Schumacher) and having come close in Bahrain and Spain they will want to be the next winners and take the total to 8 winners in 8 races and with both Raikkonen and Grosjean closely matched it's hard to say who is the more likely. But it's Grosjean's form which is the most surprising, a lot of people questioned why he was given the driver role given the way he was outperformed in 2009 and a lot of people said he would be outraced by the returning Finn, but after 7 races he is only 2 points behind and that is despite several first lap incidents where he has been the innocent part in some cases but not others (Malaysia). With the pendulum swinging from race to race it is hard to predict who will have the upper hand in the Spanish heat.

For Galahad's brilliant circuit write up - http://cliptheapex.com/pages/valencia-street-circuit/
 

RasputinLives

Leave me alone I'm on Smoko
Contributor
gethinceri - my favourite quote from my favourite movie! good call.

I know I was a little harsh on Hamilton straight after the race and have mellowed a little now and do feel sorry for him. I just get frustrated that the same things happen to him over and over again and I know most of the time the major fault lays with the other driver but at the same time you never see the likes of Alonso taken out by these guys because they learn to give them a wide-birth. I know strictly speaking Lewis is in the right but just wish he'd buck his morals a little bit for the greater good. a 4th place would have left him perfectly placed to pick off Alonso as the season continues - I still think he can do it just its now harder than it should be.

I also object to this "he dangerous he'll kill someone" attitute on drivers - we know Maldonado is a bit ropey but then I've seen some of the greats do things far worse. Lets remember the great Mika Hakkenien once took half the field out at the start of a race once with something equally stupid.

as for the race. gutted for Seb, gutted for Grosjean, gutted for Lewis but still think Mark Webber needs a bigger pat on the back for that race than he's getting.
 

LifeW12

Podium Finisher
Red Bull are sore losers, they couldn't build a car to go the distance in the circumstances of the race and they look for other people to blame for their unreliable car. Its a Newey thing his cars can never seem to finish races this goes back to the early 1990's Williams cars, 1995 Williams, 2000 McLaren, 2005 McLaren, 2008 Red Bull, 2009 Red Bull, 2010 Red Bull.
 

Josh

Champion Elect
I'd say his cars have been pretty reliable in 2011 and are pretty reliable (so far) in 2012 too. Also it could be a valid excuse, it wouldn't be the first time an engine broke down after a safety car I'm sure.
 

The Pits

Harumph. Again.
Valued Member
If we could all please stay on topic. There are threads set up to talk about Avatars, Lewis Hamilton, and Pastor Maldonado, and indeed, Lewis vs Pastor.

Any further off topic posts will be deleted.

Thank you
 

FB

Not my cup of cake
Valued Member
I wonder if there could be any thoughts of deliberately creating a safety car incident if a Renault engined car is leading? No, no team would be that cynical would they? :whistle:

Crofty "Vettel and Grosjean and simply running away with this... And Massa has had a big one on the exit of Stowe, that's bound to bring out the safety car."

Or

Brundle "Vettel and Grosjean are simply running away with this... I don't know what Button was doing there but I've never seen someone lose control on Hangar straight before. That has to bring out the safety car"
 
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