Monday, April 23, 2012

F1 Drivers Championship 2012 after Bahrain

Sebastian Vettel is now leading the F1 2012 Championship after Bahrain Grand Prix.

There is not much difference between the top 5 drivers, so that championship is wide open.
Michael Schumacher who has been in the first two rows in qualifying in Australia, Malaysia and China has only 2 points to his name after Bahrain. It again reinforces the fact that the proof of the pudding is in eating ie. finishing the race in points scoring positions in F1.

The interesting thing is at the bottom of the table. Timo Glock and Charles Pic of Marussia are 19th and 20th at the moment due to their higher finish. Marussia finished in 14th and 15th position in Australia where as the best place finish of Caterham was 16th and 18th in Malaysia. So Marussia is now in the 10th position. If non of them last three teams ie. Marussia, Caterham or HRT finish in the points and if Caterham and HRT doesn't finish above 14th position, then Marussia will get the 10th position. That is vital because only the top 10 teams get money for the championship. That is many millions of dollars for the 10th placed team and it makes a huge difference to them.

Sebastian Vettel
Lewis Hamilton
Mark Webber
Jenson Button
Fernando Alonso
Nico Rosberg
Kimi Raikkonen
Romain Grosjean
Sergio Perez
Paul di Resta
Force India
Bruno Senna
Kamui Kobayashi
Jean-Eric Vergne
Pastor Maldonado
Daniel Ricciardo
Nico Hulkenberg
Force India
Felipe Massa
Michael Schumacher
Timo Glock
Charles Pic
Vitaly Petrov
Heikki Kovalainen
Pedro de la Rosa
Narain Karthikeyan

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Vettel wins from Pole in Bahrain Grand Prix 2012

Vettel who had last won in the Indian Grand Prix in 2011 won the Bahrain Grand Prix 2012 after he could just manage to ward off the charging Kimi Raikkonen. Vettel scored the fastest lap time of the race on Lap 41 which was timed at 1:36:379.

With this win Vettel is once again leading the championship.

There was plenty of drama in the race with pit lane gaffes which impacted Hamilton and Raikkonen, tire wear and heat.

Daniel Ricciardo who had got a very good qualifying and was 6th on the grid started badly and was 17th in the opening lap. Nico Rosberg too had a bad start and dropped down from 6th to 9th in the opening lap. Jenson Button, Bruno Senna, Pastor Maldonado and Charles Pic retired.

Michael Schumacher who started from 22nd position came in 10th position and scored the last point. Narain Karthikeyan who made 4 pit stops was just 0.5 seconds behind his team mate Pedro de La Rosa who was on a 3 stop strategy. The stewards will look into an incident between Hamilton and Rosberg after the race. In case there are any penalties, we will bring that information in a later report.

Race Results:
1. Sebastian Vettel Redbull Winner   Gap
2. Kimi Raikkonen Lotus                 +3.3 seconds
3. Romain Grosjean Lotus                +10.1 seconds
4. Mark Webber Redbull                 +38.7 seconds
5. Nico Rosberg Mercedes              +55.4 seconds
6. Paul di Resta Force India             +57.5 seconds
7. Fernando Alonso Ferrari              +57.8. seconds
8. Lewis Hamilton McLaren             +58.9 seconds
9. Felipe Massa Ferrari                    +64.9 seconds
10. Michael Schumacher Mercedes  +71.4 seconds
11. Sergio Perez Sauber                   +72.7 seconds
12. Nico Hulkenberg Force India      +76.5 seconds
13. Kamui Kobayashi Sauber            +90.3 seconds
14. Jean Vergne Toro Rosso             +93.7 seconds
15. Daniel Ricciardo Toro Rosso       +1Lap
16. Vitaly Petrov Caterham               +1Lap
17. Heikki Kovalainen Caterham       +1Lap
18. Jenson Button McLaren               +2L (Retired)
19. Timo Glock Marussia                  +2L
20. Pedro de La Rosa HRT               +2L
21. Narain Karthikeyan HRT             +2L
22. Bruno Senna Williams                  +3L (Retired)

Gearbox penalty for Schumacher: Provisional Grid

Michael Schumacher had qualified at a dissapointing 18th position in the 2012 Bahrain Grand Prix. However, he was to start at 17th position, as Pastor Maldonado of Williams was hit with a Gearbox penalty. Drivers are penalised 5 places for a gearbox change. Each gearbox has to last 4 races.

However, Mercedes has decided that they will change the gearbox of Michael Schumacher's car No. 7. Hence, Michael Schumacher is likely to start at 18th place on the grid.

With smart Ross Brawn being at the helm of Mercedes, they may chose to change the setup of Michael's car and start him from the pit lane. One has to remember that the heat and surface characteristics of the Bahrain circuit is likely to eat up tires. Michael Schumacher because of his Q1 exit has two spare sets of tires. So I am sure, they will change the set up of his car to take the benefit of the extra tyres and start him from the pit lane. Till then the provisional starting grid for the 2012 Bahrain Grand Prix is as follows:

Provisional Grid:
1. Sebastian Vettel Redbull  
2. Lewis Hamilton McLaren 
3. Mark Webber Redbull  
4. Jenson Button McLaren  
5. Nico Rosberg Mercedes 
6. Daniel Ricciardo Toro Rosso 
7. Romain Grosjean Lotus  
8. Sergio Perez Sauber  
9. Fernando Alonso Ferrari
10. Paul di Resta Force India
11. Kimi Raikkonen Lotus  
12, Kamui Kobayashi Sauber  
13. Nico Hulkenberg Force India  
14. Felipe Massa Ferrari 
15. Bruno Senna Williams  
16. Heikki Kovalainen Caterham  
17. Jean Eric Vergne Toro Rosso
18. Vitaly Petrov Caterham
19.   Charles Pic Marussia
20.   Pedro de La Rosa HRT 
21.   Pastor Maldonado Williams 
22.  Michael Schumacher Mercedes
23. Timo Glock Marussia  
24. Narain Karthikeyan HRT  

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Bahrain Qualy: Vettel back in Pole: Schumacher goes out in Q1

Baharin is hosting the Formula 1 Grand Prix in 2012 despite massive protests and violence. On Saturday in qualifying, Sebastian Vettel of Red Bull finally scored the first pole of the season. The biggest casualty in the qualifying was Michael Schumacher failing to qualify for the Q2. He was helplessly watching from the pits when  the timings kept on tumbling and Heikki Kovalainen of Caterham bettered his timing to score the 17th position.

Mercedes who were the pre race favourites to score the pole could not do so. Apart from Michael's surprising exit in the Q1, which the team tweeted as "a technical problem prevented Michael running again in Q1..more info later", Nico Rosberg too could not go beyond the 5th place in Q3. Lewis Hamilton separated the two red bulls and Jenson Button scored 4th.

Narain Karthikeyan, the lone Indian in fray, came 24th and was outqualified by his team mate Pedro de La Rosa.

1. Sebastian Vettel Redbull 1:32.422
2. Lewis Hamilton McLaren 1:32.520
3. Mark Webber Redbull 1:32.637
4. Jenson Button McLaren 1:32.711
5. Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1:32.821
6. Daniel Ricciardo Toro Rosso 1:32.912
7. Romain Grosjean Lotus 1:33.008
8. Sergio Perez Sauber 1:33.394
9. Fernando Alonso Ferrari
10. Paul di Resta Force India
11. Kimi Raikkonen Lotus 1:33.789
12, Kamui Kobayashi Sauber 1:33.806
13. Nico Hulkenberg Force India 1:33.807
14. Felipe Massa Ferrari 1:33.912
15. Bruno Senna Williams 1:34.017
16. Heikki Kovalainen Caterham 1:36.832
17. Pastor Maldonado Williams
18. Michael Schumacher Mercedes 1:34.865
19. Jean Eric Vergne Toro Rosso 1:35.014
20. Vitaly Petrov Caterham 1:35.823
21. Charles Pic Marussia 1:37.683
22. Pedro de La Rosa HRT 1:37.883
23. Timo Glock Marussia 1:37.905
24. Narain Karthikeyan HRT 1:38.314

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Nico wins. Mercedes messes it up for Schumacher

First win for Nico Rosberg in the Chinese Grand Prix. Luck seems to have deserted Michael Schumacher. His mechanic did not fit a nut in his wheel and he had to retire in lap 12. The race Stewards imposed a fine of 5000 Euros on Mercedes for unsafe release. Michael Schumacher has qualified well in the previous two races as well, but due to bad luck he has only 1 points to his credit.

Sebastian Vettel was running at 2nd position before he was overtaken by others. Vettel was on a two stop strategy and hence his tyres were in very bad condition before he was overtaken. However, Vettel has not been reported to have shown a finger to his team. Information is awaited about given his temperamental nature.

1. Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1:36:26.929
2. Jenson Button McLaren +20.6 secs
3. Lewis Hamilton McLaren +26.0 secs
4. Mark Webber Red Bull +27.9 secs
5. Sebastian Vettel Red Bull +30.4 secs
6. Romain Grosjean Lotus +31.4 secs
7. Bruno Senna Williams +34.5 secs
8. Pastor Maldonado Williams +35.6 secs
9. Fernando Alonso Ferrari +37.2 secs
10. Kamui Kobayashi Sauber +38.7 secs
11. Sergio Perez Sauber +41.0 secs
12. Paul di Resta Force India +42.2 secs
13. Felipe Massa Ferrari +42.7 secs
14. Kimi Raikkonen Lotus +50.5 secs
15. Nico Hulkenberg Force India +51.2 secs
16. Jean-Eric Vergne Torro Rosso +51.7 secs
17. Daniel Ricciardo Torro Rosso +63.1 secs
18. Vitaly Petrov Caterham +1 Lap
19. Timo Glock Marussia +1 Lap
20 Charles Pic Marussia +1 Lap
21 Pedro de la Rosa HRT +1 Lap
22 Narain Karthikeyan HRT +2 Laps
23 Heikki Kovalainen Caterham +3 Laps

Retired Michael Schumacher Mercedes on 12th Lap due to Wheel

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Chinese Grand Prix Qualifying: First Pole for Mercedes

Mercedes has been threatening to score a pole position this year, but their friday pace had not translated into a Pole position in qualifying in the season opening Australian Grand Prix and also in Malaysia. In the third race in the 2012 calendar, Nico Rosberg scored his and Mercedes first pole. Hamilton came second. However he will be demoted by 5 places due to his gear box change. Michael Schumacher, who was faster than his team mate this year, and was the fastest in practice in Friday, could only score P3 and was half a second adrift of his team mate. Many people had expected Michael Schumacher to score the pole here in China. However, it was not to be. Due to Hamilton's demotion, Nico and Michael will start from the first row.

Last years dominant driver Vettel could only be 11th. His team mate Webber could make it to the Q3 in the qualifying and scored 7th. India's Narain Karthikeyan who had done really well in the Malaysia Grand Prix came last and 24th.

1. N. Rosberg Mercedes 1:35.121
2. L. Hamilton McLaren1:35.626
3. M. Schumacher Mercedes 1: 35.691
4. K. Kobayashi Sauber 1:35.784
5. K. Raikkonen Lotus 1:35.898
6. J. Button McLaren 1:36.191
7. M. Webber Redbull 1:36.290
8. S. Perez Sauber 1:36.524
9. F. Alonso Ferrari 1:36.622
10. R. Grosjean Lotus No time in Q3
Times in Q2
11. S. Vettel Redbull 1:36.031
12. F. Massa Ferrari 1:36.255
13. P. Maldonado Williams 1:36.283
14. B. Senna Williams 1:36.289
15. P. Di Resta Force India 1:36.317
16. N. Hulkenberg Force India 1:36.745
17. D. Ricciardo Torro Rosso 1:36.958
Times in Q1
18. J. Vergne Torro Rosso 1:37.714
19. H. Kovalainen Caterham 1:38.463
20. V. Petrov Caterham 1:38.677
21. T. Glock Marussia 1:39.282
22. C. Pic Marussia 1:39. 717
23. P. de La Rosa HRT 1:40.411
24. N. Karthikeyan HRT 1:41.000