Wednesday, April 24, 2013


The Bahrain GP weekend was a real hotbed, not just the temperatures and F1 machinery going berserk in the middle of the desert but the surrounding region was a hotbed of protest. The unrest in Bahrain rages on despite claims by the government of on-going "talks" to heal the nation. But the show goes on even when Bernie says the Bahraini government was "stupid" to host the race. Although he also said:
"I feel they do a super job and we're more than happy to give them a new contract for five years. I don't see any problems."
Yeah, all he sees is cash as the Bahrain GP promoters cough up GBP26 million per race, so a 5 year contract would do just nice for Bernie. Who cares how many have died on the streets, right?

I need the money, ex-wife sucking me dry (not there)..
Qualifying set up a pretty interesting race although Rosberg putting his Mercedes on pole was more of a show as we know the Mercedes has been struggling on Friday and Saturday. With Alonso and Vettel so close, it was a foregone conclusion that they would overtake him pretty quickly to shape up the race. Which was what duly happened although Rosberg did put up a brave fight until lap 3.

The pace of the Mercedes were appalling  it was ridiculous to see them losing so much time, unable to fend off anybody for the first few laps. They dropped off for most of the race although Lewis did regain the pace later towards the end when the temperatures went down a bit and his car went from crap to "amazing". I'm unable to comment on the fight between him and Webber at the end because my live feed went down when it mattered. So I basically missed the finish.

"I was nowhere and had no speed at all. There was nothing I could do because no matter what I did to the car it wouldn't go any faster and the gap was growing in front. Then all of a sudden something happened after the second pit-stop and the car started to react differently and I was able to push because I had grip again.
It must have been something that happened to the car after qualifying when we changed gearbox and something wasn't set right and then went back to being set right because all of a sudden the car was amazing."

Ferrari went into this race as the favorites for the win as both Alonso and Massa have won here many times. Ferrari also have been traditionally strong in Bahrain. But luck was not on their side. Alonso suffered a DRS wing failure so couldn't use it for the whole race and Massa had 2 tire punctures plus a host of other problems. Alonso commented:

"We were very, unlucky," he said. "In four races we've had two very unlucky moments. But it will come for the others and in that moment we will take our opportunity. It was very difficult. I stopped two times in two laps so was at the back of the group, with no DRS to pass. The race became very, very difficult."

Lotus were also the favorites as they have good pace and tire management even in the heat of Bahrain. They also have good data from finishing on the podium last year. But their starting position was not so good and they had to fight through the field to reach the podium. Coincidentally  this year's podium was exactly the same order as last year. So basically Vettel had free reign to cruise his way to the podium.

The interesting battle of the race was a race long scrap between the McLaren pairing of Jenson Button and Sergio Perez, who spent much of the race in a fight with Rosberg. As has been the case during this early part of the season McLaren had a much better race pace than what they have shown on a Saturday and were able to compete with Ferrari and Mercedes throughout the race.

Perez was on form and harassed Button like crazy to which Button complained to his race engineer, insisting that Perez was driving too aggressively and should be ‘calmed down’. Perez didn't really give a rats ass as his team boss Martin Whitmarsh has already told him after China to be more aggressive and use some "elbows". Afterwards Button criticized his team mate for being too aggressive and said, “That’s not the way I want to go racing.”

Keep your fucking elbow in the car at all times Checo!
"I was vocal on the radio and emotions were running high but I will say exactly what I said then: the racing out there and was great fun but Checo was too aggressive. At 300 kilometres an hour you don't expect your team-mate to come alongside and bang wheels with you. So that was a bit of a surprise and I'm probably not the only one feels like that."
I think Button needs to suck it up and toughen up too. What do you think Mr Whitmarsh? Personally I quite enjoyed Perez harassing Button as it was exciting racing. Of course nobody wants to see an accident between team mates especially when one of them is a noob and overdid himself but it did look good. Perez has the skills, he just needs to round off the edges now and smoothen it down.

Di Resta produced an excellent drive, particularly in his first stint to pass Rosberg and pile pressure on Alonso. It will be a shot in the arm for Force India who have had some difficulties in the first part of the season, however the second car of Adrian Sutil collided with Felipe Massa on the first lap and could not recover to score any points. But the Force India has become a force to be reckoned with this season. The force is strong with this one, eh?

1. Vettel Red Bull 57 laps
2. Raikkonen Lotus + 9.1s
3. Grosjean Lotus + 19.5s
4. Di Resta Force India + 21.7s
5. Hamilton Mercedes + 35.2s
6. Perez McLaren + 35.9s
7. Webber Red Bull + 37.2s
8. Alonso Ferrari + 37.5s
9. Rosberg Mercedes + 41.1s
10. Button McLaren + 46.6s
11. Maldonado Williams + 1m06.4s
12. Hulkenberg Sauber + 1m12.9s
13. Sutil Force India + 1m16.7s
14. Bottas Williams + 1m21.5s
15. Massa Ferrari + 1m26.3s
16. Ricciardo Toro Rosso + 1 lap
17. Pic Caterham + 1 lap
18. Gutierrez Sauber + 1 lap
19. Bianchi Marussia + 1 lap
20. Chilton Marussia + 1 lap
21. van der Garde Caterham + 2 laps

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