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 -


Race Winner
Seb had a problem last year when Charlie Whiting left the red lights on.....longer, .didn't he go off just after the first corner...
Same problem as last weekend or over heated rubber..
You at the front...get to the back of the class......


Pole Sitter
KekeTheKing - it's interesting to watch Maldonado's overtaking maneuvers in that race. Almost all of his passes saw his opponent pushed beyond the white line. A clear example would be his pass on Webber at the last corner. Webber was pushed wide and ended up losing a further two places as a result.

Hope that wasn't off topic.


Champion Elect
Why did it take so long before lapped cars were allowed to overtake anyway? Do they have to wait until the marshals have cleared the track? If so, that doesn't make any sense unless the entire track is littered with car pieces. They can easily drive slowly around the area where the marshals are working and the marshals could get out of the way. It also took a bloody long time for Karthikeyan to finally get past the front runners. Imo they should be made to get out of the way. The way it is now just takes an unnecessarily long time.


Rooters Reporter
It seems bizarre to me that lapped drivers can have their laps back. If they've been lapped on the track before the safety car period and not because of it then they should be required to drop back to their position in correct race order. If under safety car conditions all cars are supposed to be running to the same delta then even after diving into the pits no-one should find themselves lapped because of the safety car unless they are in for accident repair - in which case, I'm sorry but, that's tough.

If my theory holds, and I stand to be corrected, there should be no need to wait for "unlapping" cars to pass the safety car and play catch up. That's got to save having at least one lap under the SC, maybe even two, and maintain the race order prior to the SC.

Maybe that's too simple for Race Control or am I missing something? :thinking:
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.

Am I missing some spectacular sarcasm or am I the only one to have noticed that RB won the double in 2010?
2010 was pretty spectacular in a Newey-designed car that can't finish a race because RB are sore losers who can't build a car that goes the distance.
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