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Webber and Red Bull hunt down Alonso for brilliant Silverstone victory
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Posted By: James Allen  |  08 Jul 2012   |  3:47 pm GMT  |  188 comments

Mark Webber chose the perfect strategy and paced his race to perfection to catch and pass Fernando Alonso in the closing stages and clinch his second British Grand Prix victory.

It was the ninth win of Webber’s career and his second of 2012. It was also his second British Grand Prix win to go with his second Monaco victory earlier this year. Webber’s Red Bull team mate Sebastian Vettel completed the podium.

The result moved Webber to just 13 points behind Alonso in the drivers’ world championship and confirmed him as Alonso’s closest championship rival. The double podium finish extended Red Bull’s advantage at the top of the Constructors’ Championship.

After a weekend of heavy rain, Silverstone surprisingly remained dry throughout the race, which was run entirely on slick tyres. With track temperatures fluctuating between 34 degrees and 29 degrees,

There was a further surprise in the race as the hard compound tyre proved to be faster than the soft and ultimately it was the final stint that proves decisive as Webber, who had started the race on the softs, ended on the hards, while Alonso was the other way around.

The greater structural strength of the hard tyre was important through the lateral loads in the high speed corners of sector 2 in particular, while drivers found that the soft tyre understeered more in the race. Pre-race expectations that it was up to a second faster than the hard proved inaccurate.

Ferrari had started Massa on softs and had data from his runs which indicated that the softs would perform reasonably well at the end, but Webber’s pace on hards was too much for Alonso, who had not been able to build enough of a lead over Webber in the early part of the race to maintain his position at the end. Webber stayed in touch with Alonso throughout the first two stints of the race, never allowing him to get too far ahead and then was able to catch and pass him with one decisive move around the outside of Brooklands corner with there laps to go.

“I have a few wins now, but this one is taking a little bit to sink in,” Webber said. “I think it didn’t look like a spectacular race with Fernando initially but it was on. There was a little bit of strategy involved, particularly pacing stints on tyres.

“I knew he was running a different way, and I thought after first stint he was in very good shape to close the win out, but it came our way in the last stint and I am absolutely over the moon.”

Alonso had controlled the race throughout as he kept a steady gap ahead of the Red Bull duo. However, the superior speed and durability of the prime tyre turned the race in Mark Webber’s favour as he took the lead with just four laps remaining. Vettel came close to making it a Red Bull 1-2 after an early pit stop put the double World Champion in contention for the race win. He had earlier been in a train of cars stuck behind Michael Schumacher but opted for the early stop after seeing the performance of the prime tyres. In the clear air he was able to jump from fifth to third.

Lewis Hamilton was the only other driver in the top ten to start on the prime tyre. But he was not able to exploit the advantage of the tyres; being caught in a queue of traffic behind Schumacher. When the traffic did clear during the first phase of pit stops he was 18 seconds off Alonso. He shortly held the lead but Alonso quickly regained first on fresher tyres. Hamilton eventually finished the race in 8th position.

Felipe Massa put in arguably his best drive of the season and his highest finishing position since Korea in 2012 to hold off a fast-charging Kim Raikkonen and take fourth place. Massa looked racey throughout as he hassled Schumacher in the early stages, taking third place but losing that position to Vettel after the pit stops.

Raikkonen headed home Lotus team mate Romain Grosjean as the pair gained another good haul of points for the team after swapping fastest laps in the closing stages of the Grand prix. Grosjean in particular produced yet another very good performance to overcome an early front-wing change and pass Schumacher and Lewis Hamilton.

Schumacher and Hamilton both had difficult races, starting from third and eighth and finishing seventh and eighth respectively, lacking pace throughout. Schumacher’s main struggles were on the prime tyre relative to other teams as he slipped down the field during the second half of the Grand Prix. Hamilton did a very short middle stint on the soft tyres, after running a long first stint on the hards which looked like it might have got him into contention for a strong points finish.

Bruno Senna and Jenson Button completed the top 10 of a lively race. Button made up four positions on the opening lap to make up for his poor qualifying but did not have the pace to progress in to the major points scoring positions.

In the early stages of the Grand Prix Pastor Maldonado and Sergio Perez were in amongst the points scoring positions. But a overtaking manoeuvre around the outside by Perez quickly ruined their days as Maldonado lost control and continued his run of assisting other drivers in early retirements. Maldonado managed to finish the race but in a lowly 16th. Perez described the Venezuelan as “stupid” and said that he and other drivers felt that he shouldn’t be in F1, with such driving.

Kamui Kobayashi compounded a bad day for Sauber when he locked up on the way into the pits and struck a member of his team. Kobayashi continued to 11th place, while the mechanic went to the medical centre for attention.

The three podium finishers all got trophies, but the fans deserved a medal for putting up with difficult conditions, muddy car parks and traffic problems all weekend. In the end the race provided a great end to the weekend, which had started off in such trying circumstances due to heavy rain.

[Additional reporting: Matt Meadows]

BRITISH GRAND PRIX, Silverstone, 52 Laps
1. Webber Red Bull 1h25:11.288
2. Alonso Ferrari + 3.060
3. Vettel Red Bull + 4.836
4. Massa Ferrari + 9.519
5. Raikkonen Lotus + 10.314
6. Grosjean Lotus + 17.101
7. Schumacher Mercedes + 29.153
8. Hamilton McLaren + 36.463
9. Senna Williams + 43.347
10. Button McLaren + 44.444
11. Kobayashi Sauber + 45.379
12. Hulkenberg Force India + 47.856
13. Ricciardo Toro Rosso + 51.241
14. Vergne Toro Rosso + 53.300
15. Rosberg Mercedes + 57.394
16. Maldonado Williams + 1 lap
17. Kovalainen Caterham + 1 lap
18. Glock Marussia + 1 lap
19. Pic Marussia + 1 lap
20. De la Rosa HRT + 2 laps
21. Karthikeyan HRT + 2 laps

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188 Comments
  1. Sebee says:

    Another one for the tires?

    Karma perhaps for last race?  Or will we need a Ferrari DNF to square things?

    Can one see the pit stops from the stands across with that lowered pit lane?  And did Sir Jackie not look exactly like Austin Powers giving that thumbs up?

    Finally – is it just me or should F1 trophies not be allowed to look like logos of companies?  I know it’s a marketing show – but that’s just a bit much to have constructors trophy look like Santander logo.

    1. RobertS says:

      I noticed that about the trophies.

      1. KRB says:

        I don’t like that either about the trophies, but the old adage of ‘he who pays the piper calls the tune’ applies.

        Stats to date
        =============

        * added T5′s b/c they tell a story

        Wins: FA2,MW2,SV1,LH1,NR1,JB1,PM1

        Podiums: FA5,LH4,SV3,KR3,MW2,NR2,RG2,JB2,SP2,PM1,MS1

        Top Five Finishes (T5′s): FA7,MW7,SV6,LH5,KR5,NR3,RG3,JB2,SP2,PM1,MS1,FM1,KK1,NH1

        Points Finishes (4+): FA9,MW8,LH8,KR8,SV7,NR6,RG5,JB5,PdR5,BS5,SP4,MS4,FM4,KK4,NH4

        Longest podium streaks (2+): LH3,FA2(2x),KR2

        Current podium streak: FA2,MW1,SV1

        Longest T5 streaks (2+):
        FA5,MW4,LH3,FA2,MW2,SV2(2x),LH2,KR2(2x),NR2,RG2

        Current T5 streak:
        FA5,MW2,KR2,SV1,FM1

        Longest points finish streaks (3+): FA9,LH7,KR6,NR6,SV5,MW4(2x),RG3

        Current points finish streak: FA9,KR6,MW4,JB2,MS2,BS2,SV1,LH1,RG1,FM1

        Retirements (not classified)(3+): MS5,RG4,KK3,CP3

    2. Dave C says:

      Interesting how no one seems to notice Vettel raced the whole race with a damaged front wing, to get a podium after that I say jays off to the boy, but Lotus’s race pace in Grosjean’s hands looks mighty, the hotter conditions of Hungary might just yield a win.

      1. radosav says:

        he broke his wing himself with his strange overtaking technique

      2. JackFlash says:

        Mmmmm….
        Sometimes a little end-fence damage actually helps rather than hinders front wing effectivity. Not ideal, but not always that detrimental. JF

    3. Jenks says:

      Hugely agree with you regarding the trophies. I am sick of seeing the Santander logo. Sure, put it ON the trophy if they’re paying to sponsor it, but don’t make the whole thing just a big advert for them. They look lame.

    4. ida says:

      What did Alonso do in Valencia to deserve bad ‘Karma’?? Didnt realise coming through the field from 11th to 2nd without hitting anyone and then seeing the Red Bull retire demands some cosmic retribution!!!!

      Is that why most drivers stayed within the vicinity of his starting position today? In case they made up to many places and cursed themselves for the German GP?

      1. Sebee says:

        I didn’t mean it in an evil way, just in a making things even after that gifted win thanks to reliably gods finally taking a few cars down to give us a bit more drama.

      2. Quattro_T says:

        Are you sure you are talking about Valencia 2012??? I remember Alonso overtaking almost half the field on his way to 2nd. That is called top notch raCing!

        “What did Alonso do in Valencia to deserve bad ‘Karma’?”

        Probably hinting that Alonso used his famous super power to bring the alternators of Vettel and Grojean to a halt.

      3. Sebee says:

        All I’m saying is he got a win when he was only good enough for second and today he lost a win after dominating most laps. It balanced. I didn’t say anything about the impressive drive to get to second. It was awesome, but was not enough on the day to win without help from reliability gods.

        I’m sure he’s ok with win and second in back to back GPs.

      4. kfzmeister says:

        Horner suggested that Alonso’s luck would soon run out. Something about statistics, etc.,..
        If this was it, then great. Let’s get on with it :)

    5. xrr says:

      I think they tried to be over cleaver with tyre choice. To start with hard tyres let you stay out a bit longer in the first stint and it may be really useful if there is a rain threat.
      It didnt rain and they paid the bill.

      But the main problem is, not to have fastest car. In every race until now Alonso never had the fastest car, he always had to check his back.

      It was same in Barcelona, same thing happened in Canada and forced them to made mistakes.
      One can not always win without the best car, even if he is the best driver.

      Alonso doesnt need a dominant car to win the title but at least in some races he should have a car as fast as others.

    6. ChrisS says:

      Good call on the trophies. It is such an achievement to win one so why make them tacky.

      1. Sebee says:

        I’d like to award 25 fan points or the perfect choice of words to Chris. Tacky is the way it looks indeed! Like something they would award to a bank location for having the cleanest facilities in the region.

    7. Kay says:

      +1 on trophies.

      It’d be a whole lot better if the trophies were more about the track or the country the drivers won the race in, rather than about the sponsors.

      Imagine driver’s collection of trophies were all company logos in his display cabinet, he wouldn’t know which is which from a distance!

  2. Jako says:

    Another interesting and quality race in this very close season.
    Many good overtaking moves, especially Webbers
    move on Alonso at the end.
    Really enjoying this season.

    cheers

    1. Brace says:

      That was probably one of the least exciting overtaking moves in the race to be honest.

      1. Agreed. I like the idea of the DRS for not spoiling a race by allowing faster cars through so that they can battle up for their intended position, but DRS overtakes for the lead are a total let down.

      2. Sebee says:

        Interesting. Allow DRS but not in fights for P1. Hmmmm.

      3. timothy clarke says:

        that is absolutely right on!

      4. timothy clarke says:

        think of Alonso holding off Schumi all those years ago…that was real racing and will be in replays forever…who on earth is going to remember Mark’s pass after say..tomorrow!

      5. hero_was_senna says:

        timothy makes a great call.
        Imola 2005, Alonso holding off Schumacher for the final laps was staggering driving, not catching the backmarkers in front so as to not present any opportunity. DRS would have ruined that drive.
        Even more than ITV deciding on an add break right at the end!!

      6. Sebee says:

        I gave this more thought while brushing my teeth this morning, and the only thing I can come up with that would be a hurdle is the black/white argument. Would not allowing DRS deployment in fights for P1 be too confusing for the general public?

        Right now it’s pretty black and white. DRS is either usable or not to all in the field. But they do have that 1s gap rule already, so there is already gray in the rule. I don’t see why taking DRS away for P1 fights would be an issue to understand for the public.

        I really think we may be onto something here.

        Someone please – argument points against DRS not being allowed in fights for P1.

      7. Sebee says:

        James,

        I’m really beginning to think that this idea of no DRS for P1 is a good one. I can’t come up with any objections in my mind, although that is limited brainstorming feedback of course. You have the power to give Damien’s idea a bit more wind in the sails. It would be exciting to have this website contribute to refinement of the rules, especially one like DRS which has polarized the fans to extent. I think we can agree no DRS for P1 would put one in their court. Not to mention I bet you every driver would fully support this idea. I’m getting ahead of myself here, but it would be cool for JAonF1 to be the catalist for this discussion of no DRS for P1 in F1 world and perhaps even to a rule change.

      8. Agreed, Damien. DRS passes for ANY position are a letdown and completely forgettable. They are bland drive-by passes that do nothing to excite the fans. The lead driver is a sitting duck for the trailing driver to open his wing and drive by.

        Granted, this race was a little better than Montreal or some of the others where it was so easy to pass that most drivers chose not to pass elsewhere in preference for an easy, uneventful DRS drive-by; at least DRS didn’t put them two car-lengths ahead by the braking point! However, Hamilton’s re-pass on Alonso (when Alonso’s DRS was open) proved that it’s not needed and can often detract from the spectacle. The softer Pirellis (relative to the older Bridgestones) allow for easier passing on more parts of every circuit; now you can drive offline without it being almost 100% certain that you will blow the upcoming corner.

        Like I have said before, racing used to be a case of “catching him is one thing, passing him is another”; now it’s just a case of catching the car ahead – passing is a foregone conclusion!

        Sebee, every argument made for P1 being exempt from DRS is a case against DRS in every position. Next, you’ll say “it shouldn’t be so easy to get onto the podium”, so P1 through P3 will be exempt. Then it’ll be points, so suddenly the top 10 are exempt. Why bother? It’s an artificial gimmick. If you want more drafting passes, make the wings more draggy (single elements only) and the tires wider.

        If you look at all the passing that is now possible outside of the DRS zones, you’ll rapidly discover that DRS isn’t needed, and merely takes away possibly exciting overtakes on other parts of the circuit.

      9. ida says:

        I think no DRS for podium positions because thats where the big boys play. 4th can use it to get 3rd. Podium places should be seen as new elite playing field.
        Either that or the DRS speed advantage comes down from 10mph to 5mph so it shouldnt help too much with top position overtakes.
        @DAMIEN great call that got me thinking about what i like and dont like to see in a race. I really think no DRS for the top 3 would be a good balance between having the ability to use a device to get you free from race ending situations and potentially to 3rd position. But to win a race you need a bit more than what we saw on sunday.

      10. Sebee says:

        You’re right Malcom. But let’s think it through. P1 is IT. Making DRS not active in fights for P1 makes sense, podium not so much, same for points. Yes, they are achievements, but in the end – P1 is P1 – that’s all we’re talking about. Purists don’t like a win through a DRS pass, and I bet you neither do the drivers – sitting there knowing it’s coming and guy will just drive by at 12km/h on the outside.

        So, still suggesting P1 only. Not top 3, not points. Just P1 – becuase nothing is as golden as P1 in a GP. And this rule wouldn’t care about 3 or 4 way fight. Let P2-P4 fight it out with DRS as to who is up front applying the pressure to P1. When they go for the pass for P1 – no DRS can be used.

        This type of rule would please the purists. If P1 is successfuly defended – well, that’s fair game, isn’t it. If P1 is passed, then it was done on absolute merrit. DRS got you to the fight, now pressure. You’d probably have more frequent Vettel/Button Canada 2011 type of stuff happening at the end trying to force and error – but without help of DRS.

        Look, everything F1 has done lately is to give us action and give us excitement in the end. But that excitment more often turns out to be about tires and how much faster a driver in P2 is than P1 on the tires and how many laps remain for him to bridge the gap. When he chases down P1, it’s almost a forgone conclusion that he will make the pass in DRS zone.

        On the flip side, Malcom brings up what I said already black & white – DRS either used or not. And of course indeed, there is a level of admitting that if DRS is wrong for P1, then it may be wrong overall. Which is perhaps the biggest issue against such a suggestion. Plus, if no DRS for P1, then it may not give the motivation to drivers to push for that P1 – it may leave them content with P2.

        In the end there are a few flaws with the idea which I’m not sure could be refined.

    2. Mikee says:

      Jako
      What was great about webbers overtaking of alonso
      Alonso’s tyres were shot and had no defence to webber
      Its only great to fans of reb bull and webber
      As for technical skill there was. none
      Good win foe webber though sshame alonso came 2nd
      But thats racing
      Bring on hockinghime Germany

      1. James Allen says:

        Webbers tyres were older…

      2. F1Fan4life says:

        Um… Yea James, his hard tires were older… That’s the entire point of hard tires. Not sure why the polesitter had an alternate strategy that differed from those directly competing with him. There were better passes than Webbers today.

      3. Paul says:

        But Webber was on the better tyres.

        While it was one of Webber’s more deserving victories, I still think Seb is the man most likely to challenge for the championship within Red Bull. Webber taking points away from him might just let Alonso take the title.

      4. Randy Torres says:

        …yes Webber’s tires were older, but isn’t Ferrari typically harder on the softs and wasn’t that third stint too long for a Ferrari on softs?

      5. dufus says:

        Well said James.
        Masterclass from Webber.

      6. Bullish says:

        Hey Paul, how was Webber’s win taking points of Vettel. Winning the race ahead of Alonso helped Vettel in the points margin to Alonso.

        On the point about the Webber – Alonso overtake, Alsonso is a much better driver than everyone else that was passed. He is a much more difficult competitor to overtake. Also given that the Red Bull is crap in a straight line, the pass was a very good move

      7. Jako probably refers to the suspens and that feeling of exhilaration when Webber finally managed to get round Alonso.
        I don’t blame the tyres for this overtake though. Pirelli do a great job to provide exciting compounds. Blame Ferrari’s strategy and DRS for the lack of spectacle in this manoeuvre.

      8. Wild Man says:

        Webber passed Alonso. Not that easy & only one who did it all day.

        By the way, nice spelling.

      9. Jako says:

        OK I concede, it was a Dead Average pass,
        Around the outside of Alonso, one of the most respected drivers on the grid, while leaving him enough room, so a missing the apex on purpose, in a car that isn’t suited by the DRS zone and struggles with straight line speed, on older, hard tyres,compared to Alonso’s fresher solf tyres, for the Lead of the Race a couple of laps before the finish.

        Yeah, it was a really ordinary pass, shouldn’t have raised a mention really.

        cheers

      10. JD says:

        Alonso’s tyres although newer, were the soft and no good. Therefore Webber’s pass in the superior RB8 on more suited tyres means Alonso was helpless. However when they were running the same tyres, Alonso was still faster even though the Ferrari isn’t as good!

      11. Grayzee (Australia) says:

        + 1 (but then I may be biased, which NOBODY else on the site is, of course….)It was a class move between two professional and expereinced drivers. Much respect!

      12. hero_was_senna says:

        There’s respect between these two. You only have to look at Schumacher and Kobayashi last year, or Maldonado and Perez this year to see the difference between talents.

    3. moxlox says:

      Massa’s move on Schumacher into Stowe was quite spectacular. Saw that with my own eyes and winced for a split second!

      Hamilton’s ‘almost’ retake of the lead from Alonso at Brooklands was good entertainment…considering he got back past Alonso with no DRS when Alonso had his DRS wide open. Granted he then was too fast to break properly allowing Alonso back through. 10/10 for effort and entertainment though!

  3. DK says:

    I am happy for Mark to take the victory, great driving. At least The fight for WDC is closer now.

  4. r0ssj says:

    Good drive from Webber. Seemed to be faster than Vettel all race, and made the hard tires work in the final stint to get past Alonso. Closes the gap in the championship and takes a well deserved win.

    Alonso drove well as usual, seemed to have the edge on the hard tires, but couldn’t match the Red Bull on the soft tires in the end. Lost some points to Webber but extended his lead over Vettel and the rest of the field, so probably not too disappointed with 2nd.

    Red Bull look to have the fastest car now. Vettel is probably favourite for the championship. Although it’s fairly close between Vettel and Webber, I think Vettel will pull away. Ferrari also looking fast now, hopefully they can continue their improvement and Alonso can maintain his challenge.

    1. Optimaximal says:

      How can you comfortably say ‘Vettel will pull away’ when Webber extended his lead over him this time out?

      1. r0ssj says:

        Well I said, “I think” it will go that way, I could be wrong though!

        I would prefer to see Webber win rather than Vettel, but in my opinion Vettel is a better driver and he’s clearly the favorite at Red Bull.

        Red Bull looks good right now, and if Vettel starts qualifying on pole I think he’ll have the edge on Webber.

      2. Dave C says:

        Obviously Vettel is better than Webber and the front wing damage was the reason why Seb couldnt challenge for the win, Vettel will still win this title as long as reliability is not a factor like Valencia or accidents, the front wing was unfortunate but the HRT in Malaysia was not awake that day, still half way to go I’m sure Seb will take the title seen as Mclaren has faded badly, lotus are not consistent enough in cooler conditions and Ferrari are still slower, so it’s a matter of who becomes the youngest 3 time world champion first, as goes for Webber, yeah not bad for a number 2 driver

  5. RobertS says:

    Another race another incident with Maldonado. Spa 2011, Australia, Monaco, Valencia and now British gp. I always say he drives too aggressive. This time it was more a racing incident and he says he was on cold tyres, but surely on cold tyres on the inside off the racing line he should know he will have less grip, and should of braked earlier. I hope he finally gets a strong penalty as i think he races too aggressive and ruins races.

    1. JF says:

      Liability, menace or great in progress. Many of the todays more aggressive drivers had an incident filled start.

  6. Bumpkin says:

    What a surprising day! I was expecting a proper wet race and out pops the sun! Reward indeed.

    Really impressed by Grosjean and what a move from Webber.

    Agreed on the trophies, not the most subtle design I’ve seen. But not as bad as those vulgar steering wheel things I think from 2010 season… I guess it is a question of taste.

    However, it has started raining now the party/mass exodus is underway.

  7. Manish says:

    James, thanks a for such a quick update. You always manage to get the news quicker than the others.
    On a personal note, I thought it was a BORING race. There was no real fight for the top spot as we saw in the first half of the championship.
    There was no fun in this race honestly, adding to that the much promised rain did not arrive, hence robbing us of a very interesting race.
    One Special mention for Massa, he seems to have found the pace, with a fourth place finish(the best this season).

    1. James Allen says:

      Wow! You are hard to please! I thought it was great

      1. it got a bit boring in the middle .. but that always happens in F1 over the years …

        i stayed awake through it :) .. and only fast forward a bit ! LOL

        Matt

      2. PaulL says:

        My problem was that the biggest factor in the outcome of the race for the top two was simply tyre strategy.

        From a driving point of view, I’d like to see tyre conservation play as little role as possible because it’s destroying the racing.

        I think the fans are happy to see the unpredictability “effect” in F1 racing but don’t care how it’s achieved. And of those involved long-term with the sport, they are happy to see it’s popularisation even if it’s sold out of substance.
        Once again, I submit it’s cheap thrills.

      3. Lezza says:

        The problem as always, is that the gulf between television coverage and being there is gigantic.

      4. pargo says:

        I thought it was a great race too. Most likely the real issue is that their fave driver didn’t win, rather than it being a “boring” race!

  8. Quattro_T says:

    Very good result for Ferrari, given car performance difference we saw in Valencia. Well done to Webber!

    I cannot help feeling a bit dissappointed that Fernando did not get the win. I feel Ferrari gave away the win the moment they decided Fernando would start on the hards. What made matters worse was that they pitted after only 16 laps, at a time when they were doing very decent lap times. Once again they concentraded on covering Webber and loosing sight of the big picture. It was like they did forget that they would, at some time in the race, fit the (worse compond) softs…

    Also felt sorry for di Resta as he had a dry weather setup and could have had a good race.

    Last but not least, watching the BBC forum I could not help noticing how the “very knowledgable and fair” english supporters were (miss)behaving when Fernandos name was mentioned by the BBC commentators. Not so fair or knowledgable after all in reality.

    1. Mimi says:

      Actually in this case covering Webber was a good idea as Webber was in the end the only driver to finish in front of Alonso, so had Alonso stayed in front of him, he would have won the race ;).

      1. Quattro_T says:

        Exactly, I am arguing that had Alonso run a couple more laps on each of the two sets of hards they used today (instead of reacting to others), then they would not have had to do ~14 laps on the softs in the last stint.

    2. Randy Torres says:

      I think that the possibility of rain factored in Alonso’s and Ferrari’s overall strategy and when the rain didn’t materialize they made some adjustments on the fly. Maybe that’s why they saved the softs for their final stint, when they had no other choice but to use them. At the time I thought it was a great strategic move for Alonso to pit and still come out ahead of Webber. In hindsight though, given that Ferrari seems to be hard on its softs, I wonder what would have happened if he had stayed out one maybe two more laps on the hards thus giving his softs a little more life at the end of the race.

      1. Quattro_T says:

        Agree about factoring in rain possibility but they had the info on how bad the softs were for then, since Massa used them for first stint and should have considered that. I guess they choose to gamble on the track rubbering in + Alonsos ability to handle the softs better than Massa. Oh well, you cannot win each GP can you :)

  9. Holly says:

    Great race by the top 3, specially Webber, I feel bad for Alonso, but that’s racing, and the title is open.

    1. alexbookoo says:

      Congratulations too to Ken Clarke, who appeared to finish in front of Mark Webber judging by the podium ceremony.

  10. Paul R says:

    Great seeing Webber pass for the win, but otherwise, what a topsy turvy race, the tyres are really mixing it up too much for it all to make much sense.

    After 30 years of watching F1, spending far too much time reading up and learning, this is the first year I cannot really explain what is going on or why.

    1. Grayzee (Australia) says:

      Totally agreed. I have following it since 1980 and you dead right about this year.
      I just finished reading Nigel Mansells auto biography from 1995(co written by one James allen!) and the racing was so more predictable. But was it better? I don’t know.
      Certainly alot more unreliabilty back in the 80′s and early 90′s.
      i can’t make head or tail of it this year.

  11. Ross says:

    Well done Mark Webber. A well deserved win for a British tax payer!

    1. Craig in SG says:

      Good point. How many of the British drivers reside and pay taxes in Britain?

      Answer: none

  12. Lisa Thomas says:

    James you are sorely missed on the telly.
    I watched on the BBC. I say watched but I didn’t really see the race. Every significant action was seen only in replay. Too many cutaways at crucial moments: why did we have to see diResta and Perez complaining instead of watching what was happening on the track
    The director was just not good enough [sorry BBC]
    Also their red button forum was just a chaotic free for all with no discussion that would interest a real F1 fan. I’ve just left it now. Shame cos there’s a lot to talk about.
    DC is a nice guy but just a bit dull. What we need in F1 coverage is someone like James.

    1. dkfone says:

      Agreed. Can’t understand why the director thought we’d prefer to see diResta being interviewed over the Massa/Schumacher battle. A lot of sloppy moments like this throughout the race. James is this one of the races where FOM arent responsible for the television pictures/

    2. RobertS says:

      I find the bbc pre and post race coverage very good compared to sky. EJ says what he think, I find that sky ask dull questions and they sit on the fence a lot! If sky had bbc presenters it would be perfect. I also notice that the drivers get on a lot better with EJ, DC and Jake as opposed to the sky presenters!!

    3. Optimaximal says:

      The BBC, Sky and all the other channels show the feed FOM supply. They have no control over what gets shown, live or in replay.

      They can drop back to their own cameras if they want but that rarely happens unless the race is stopped or something significant has happened.

      Driver interviews mid-race are either played audio-only or shown after the race.

      Your beef (like most) is with FOM.

      1. kp says:

        Lisa is right, Optimaximal just plain wrong. The BBC consistently cuts away from the action to show irrelevant interviews with drivers who have crashed or whatever.

        Quite why they just don’t show them at the end is mystifying to me!

        As we now say, if you want good sporting action, go Sky. No matter how much it pains!

      2. wing8 says:

        kp is area sales manager for Sky?

  13. Luke Potter says:

    Great race!

    Congratulations to the FIA on the new podium ceremony. I’ve felt for ages that the drivers should be interviewed either as soon as they’re out of the car or on the podium as that’s when the emotions are highest.

    One thing though – they really should change the position of the person handing over the trophy. Kenneth Clarke was quite frankly in the way and it looked like he was trying to upstage Webber (I am not suggesting he was). The dignitaries should be taking both a figurative and literal backseat in the podium ceremony in my opinion.

    1. Optimaximal says:

      I thought it was terrible – the sound was all mucked up as the cameras were essentially listening to the PA system wired to the stage. Props to Vettel for taking the piss out of KC though.

      Also, are they always going to be getting ‘celebrity’ interviewers or was this just a ‘British GP/Jackie Stewart isn’t doing much these days’ thing?

    2. Glennb says:

      I thought the post race interviews on the podium were rubbish. What was that all about? Great to see Sir Jackie but please don’t ever do interviews on the podium again.
      I see some complaints about the trophies but Webber’s sure looked good ;) Seems he thought so too.
      Well done to RBR. Both cars on the podium. One of the best GP’s I’ve seen for a while.

  14. Mark says:

    As said, 8 upgrades for mclaren in this race and that’s 8th place for them this race! What happened with their major updates???

    1. Sir Drinkalot says:

      It was my understanding that they didn’t use any new parts for this race ’cause of the rain. They’ll try ‘em on in Germany.

      1. Mark says:

        http://formula-one.speedtv.com/article/f1-lewis-hamilton-surprised-by-mclaren-race-form/

        “We thought we were going to do better here this weekend, with the downforce package, but obviously not.”

        I think they had updates but didn’t work at all.

    2. Optimaximal says:

      I don’t think they used all the updates because of the lack of running on Friday.

      That said, anything they put on the car simply didn’t work – they’ve dropped behind Lotus in the championship and don’t have much of a buffer over Mercedes.

      It’s a bit embarrassing really.

      1. dzolve says:

        They’re tyre stops were good though!!

      2. hero_was_senna says:

        Yes, they gain 0.3 seconds on a stop but have lost 0.5 of a second on track per lap.
        hmmm, so 0.6 for 2 stops but minus 30 odd seconds on track. Well done Sam Michaels.

        In Car magazine, an interview with Frank Williams revealed that Sam Michael was sacked by Adam Parr.
        People speak of Karma, is this payback for all the years that Ron stole sponsors, engines and designers from Williams?

    3. mr sneff says:

      Fastest thing about McLaren were the pitstops!

  15. Navro says:

    James, can you shed some light on the last last pitstop of ferrari for alonso, here in india, it showed he (ALO) is 19.xxx seconds ahead of web before going into pits, and his pit time was 23 odd sceonds, still he came out 4 seconds ahead of WEB..
    was it timing glitch in our broadcast, cuz its baffling me, its mathematically impossible.

    1. stoic little says:

      Even though alonso took 24 secs in the pitlane, webber still has to travel the length of track from the pit entry to the exit. And according to James’ analysis on the British GP preview, you lose approx. 15 on the pit stop.

    2. Sir Drinkalot says:

      The counter starts from the moment the car enters the pit lane, but the car is still moving (only much slower), doesn’t it? It’s not like the time is measured only when the car is stopped.

    3. Antti says:

      The time is from pit entry to pit exit, and it takes other drivers (who are not pitting) some time to cover the corresponding distance on track. Hence, Alonso (or anyone else) do not lose as much time as the pit time suggests.

    4. Gdon says:

      Great spot.. i noticed that too and thought Weber was going to the lead after that pit stop but Alonso was 4 secs ahead… could’nt wrap my head around that one

    5. Sebastian says:

      It takes a couple of seconds to drive the car on the racetrack between the pit entry and exit.

    6. Jon says:

      the difference is the time it takes Webber to go from pit entry to pit exit on the track.

    7. Ged says:

      You are not the only one that saw that, remembered me of older days of Schumi saw that several times in the past.

    8. TheGreatTeflonso says:

      It’s not impossible. Amazing that Steve Slater commentated and was baffled by this too. Simple answer, the drivers take about 25 seconds to pit, the time counting when they enter pit lane and ending when they exit. In the 25 seconds the driver has travelled down pit lane. A car on track still has to travel that length. The length Between entry and exit to pit lane took Webber more than 5 seconds. Therefore Alonso pitted 19 seconds ahead, spent 25 seconds pitting, exiting ahead to strategy. Webber needed to be maybe within 14 seconds of Alonso when Alonso pitted for them to meet on track.

      1. James Allen says:

        It’s called loss time, which is the time it takes to stop, compared with staying out

      2. Marc Aubry says:

        Hi. Maybe you could had the Loss time in your pre-race statistics. Seems like little trouble for a good stat. Marc

  16. TheGreatTeflonso says:

    A little disappointed with Ferrari… They seemed to have the wrong strategy with Alonso. Was it not obvious when Alonso easily kept Webber behind on the first stint despite starting on hards and Webber on softs? Ten points lost in my opinion…. Add that to the horrid Slip from 1st to 5th a couple races ago and that’s more than enough points to lose a title. Happy for Massa.

    1. stoic little says:

      Agreed with you regarding strategy. I think they had good data from Massa’s car regarding the soft. They should have pitted a little later on the first 2 stints. And no, they lost 14 points on this race alone. Instead of Alonso leading by 27 points he now only leads by 13.

    2. Optimaximal says:

      It’s not like they could do much about it – they had to use both sets meaning he was going to be compromised at the start or at the end.

  17. Roberto says:

    Hello James,

    Thanks for the report, just a correction, Alonso started on Hards, same as Hamilton, and from my point of view, pitting so soon in the first stint did cost him the victory.

    Regards,
    Roberto.

    1. James Allen says:

      The report says that Alonso started on hards and ended on softs with Webber the opposite

      1. Roberto says:

        Yep, but it also says, “Lewis Hamilton was the only other driver in the top ten to start on the prime tyre.” Minor fix needed there.

      2. Luke says:

        Roberto, I think the Prime is the “Hard”…the Option is the “Soft”, so James would be right…or am I confused?

        Anyone else want to start a petition to drop the “Option & Prime” words from F1? Just tell us the bloody tyres they are on, soft or hard, it’s much less confusing!

      3. Aussie Fan says:

        But the Prime in this case was the hard????? Roberto the report is accurate…

      4. JackFlash says:

        “only other” here means Alonso AND Hamilton on primes. English language trickery. JF

      5. Roberto says:

        Yep, my reading mistake, I missed the “other” in the phrase.

        Apologize.

    2. kfzmeister says:

      I was thinking the same, namely that Ferrari pitted Alonso too soon on lap 16. Iirc, Webber came in just a lap before on the softs.
      Is it feasible to believe that had Alonso pitted on lap 19 or 20, he could have won? Surely his hards were not dropping off that early. Didn’t Hamilton put in 22 laps on his first stint on the same hards???

  18. SP says:

    The most telling part of this race is that Mclaren certainly have issues. There was just no consistency at all. Even when Lewis came out behind Kimi with a fresh set of softs, he was expected to close and pass cars but it just didnt work. His engineer came on the line to say he needs to take advantage of the softs and pass cars in front. Yeh, right! lol

    Reminds me back at the Oz GP, well when it was over…. Damon saying something along the lines of Button already having one finger on the title. I thought it was such a stupid comment coming from Hill after 1/20 races and it sure was. Racing for a single point here was not on the cards.

    Heres to Mclaren….. the team who were ONCE able to develop cars well ;)

    1. One lunger says:

      Didn’t that one guy who was at Williams last year (the worst in Williams history) go to McLaren this year????

      1. JackFlash says:

        Sam Michael has nothing to do with car design and technical development. Pit stops and raceteam co-ordination, but not car design and development. If you are going to take an ‘armchair ping’ at Sam Michael, at least do it for things he has actual influence upon (responsibility) inside McLaren. JF

    2. hero_was_senna says:

      Yes and Button also said after Malaysia that he wasn’t worried about Alonso and Ferrari for a championship threat.
      Famous last words…

  19. Ram says:

    What is happening to Pastor..
    the last a driver was stripped of his F1 superlivcnes that comes to my mind is Yuji Ide of the Super Aguri … is Pastor heading the same way … would love to see the driver meetup in Hockenheim …

    1. Optimaximal says:

      I do wonder if the amount he’s costing Williams in points and car rebuilds is covered by his sponsor money.

      Also, if he doesn’t buck his ideas i’m sure the FIA will *eventually* step in.

    2. Quattro_T says:

      I do not think he has done more than what Hamilton has done in the past couple of years and I did not hear anyone talking of stripping him of s-licens…

      Todays incident was nothing more than a racing incident IMO – a matter of the car sliding due to loss of grip. Last race Maldonado was literally pushed out of the circuit and he reacted to it badly. I think people are being too harsh towards him.

      1. Ram says:

        What Pastor has is certainly pace and that is getting evident with Bruno in the other car … would it have been wise of Williams to had a combination of raw pace with old experienvced driver like Rubens or even Sutil …he was in the paddock this weekend …would Sutil done justice to the williams car by bringing a steady haul of good decent points.

      2. Quattro_T says:

        Williams probably knows everything there is to know about what is best combination for that team. Problem is I guess they really need the cash to keep the company up and running.

  20. Matt Cheshire says:

    Red bull domination hasn’t materialized so very relieved to see a tight race.

    Interesting to see Webber and Alonso so close in pace on both days.

    Yet again Ferrari have left Alonso Vulnerable in the last stages.

    A sad(ish) irony that Maclaren’s best moments were the pit stops.

    “pasta marinara” was the best comment. A messy dish with a bit of an odour- just like Pastor’s driving.

    1. Luke says:

      Yeh I heard that one too and thought it was brilliant. I think it was from Alan Jones (1981 world champ) who was guest commentating on Channel 10 in Australia…just in case our British friends on this site are wondering where we heard it.

      1. hero_was_senna says:

        Hate being pedantic, but Jones was 1980 WDC.

      2. Grayzee (Australia) says:

        ahem….not to be picky, but….Alan won the 1980 WC….. just sayin’….

  21. Methusalem says:

    Great drive from Webber! It’s getting clearer now that the championship is between Ferrari and Red Bull. I think the Ferrari and Renault engines are the best for this season. What McLaren, Mercedes and Force India do have in common is the surprisingly unsuitable (for the tyres) engine from Mercedes.

    1. Optimaximal says:

      The Mercedes engine is still the best performing engine on the grid (the others lack significant power compared to it). It’s the cars they’re bolted too & the drivers they’re propelling that have problems.

      The Renault engine is relatively asthematic at full pelt and IIRC, the Ferrari just seems to lack the legs and yet (I believe) is less fuel efficient.

      This was the case 2-3 years ago, so given the engine freeze i’d assume it’s still the same.

      1. Hansb says:

        Ohh no… that is just guessing. Fact is that since 18K rpm limit, differences are very much reduced. The only way to find out which engine is best or has the highest output, is to put them on the very same bench and judge them on all important figures.

  22. Die Scuderia says:

    First, congratulations to Mark. We sure did well today. A bit disappointing that we did not win, but hey such is life in motorsport. We shall get them next time!

    The race was a bit a bore for me though. The DRS and these tires are surely killing my love for the sport. I think the sport needs to dig deep and find a way to bring back passion into the sport. DS

  23. olivier says:

    What’s this thing with Maldonado?

    He is pushing drivers to the limit which is something I like. The thing I don’t like is that he cannot handle the limit himself. He is always losing his car … He did it to Hamilton a fortnight ago, and now he did it to Sergio.

    Did you also notice how Kimi had to use all of his experience to avoid a crash with Maldonado in the first lap?

    Hothead Maldo is surely building himself a reputation on track.

    1. Sebastian says:

      Yeah, Kimi has had two races compromised by maldonado’s driving (three incidents). Maldonado should take a chapter from Kobayashi’s book. Loose your place with grace and take it back in the next corner…

  24. Nigel says:

    As I feared, McLaren were unable to get any benefit from their belated upgrade thanks to the weather. They now appear to have the fourth fastest car.

    The strategy calculator was way off for the second race running (though to be fair, the rain meant the track wasn’t rubbered in). Are you going to make any modifications to it for the next race, James ?

    1. efi says:

      more like 6th

  25. JimmiC says:

    Great win for Webber, another stonking drive from Alonso. It’s curiously ironic to think back to that situation between Ford and Ferrari over the naming of the F150 and how the two could be confused – how we all scoffed, wrongly. Alonso has been hauling a big, red truck around all season and I was slightly disappointed that he couldn’t hang on for the win. Not to take anything away from Webber though, a great win. How odd that Webber (team-mate to the wunderkid) and Alonso (driving a pick-up with a horse painted on the side) are the first two repeat winners this year.

    On Perez and Maldonado; I have sympathy with Pastor that has been seriously lacking in all of his previous incidents. He obviously just lost the back of the car and clipped Perez. Perez was alongside rather than ahead and you could call it a racing incident. Nevertheless, Maldonado will be damned by his reputation which in many ways is wrong. He’s committed some calamities this season but his crash with Perez wasn’t one of them and I’d be disappointed if he ended up being penalised.

  26. Onko says:

    A well deserve victory to the man from OZ a
    true blue, who does not shoot from the hip, but
    tell it as it is,he will tell his close mate Alonso I got you this time bud.
    As for the first looser Fernando he can thank
    his pit wall for its srategy of tyers,its a
    second time around they done it,seriously Mr
    S Domenicaly must take the walk, he is the man
    that ticks the boxes, to be blunt about he has
    not made the grade since taking over from R.Brown and that,is long time ago.

    1. Pasq says:

      The days of Ross brawn at ferrari are long gone, they do not hold the political advantages once enjoyed, it’s a different F1 now! As for the decision to start on hards that was a good call, if Alonso had started on softs he would have been overtaken by lap 3, at least we got a race! The red bull is a better car, and would have proven so much earlier, as for calling for domenicali’s head is ridiculous, he’s a manager of many talented engineers and drivers, there were not many dry weather data to draw from earlier in week to ensure what was best tyre or how they would degrade! A decision was made with full intention to win, but didn’t work out, just like most things in life! In hindsight maybe they could gone on to
      Softs for the second stint after knowing the yards were a better tyre, so more competitive for last stint!

      1. Quattro_T says:

        ” In hindsight maybe they could gone on to
        Softs for the second stint after knowing the yards were a better tyre, so more competitive for last stint!”

        While agree on most what you said, still taking softs for 2nd stint would not have helped if pitting at 16th lap as they did. The last stint on hard would prove to be a very long one. They should have done like Hamilton – pitting for softs on 18th-20th lap and hards again at 29th-30th lap. Especially as they were still doing very decent lap times when they pitted first time.

      2. Onko says:

        pasq you are lovely man and I thank you for
        your thoughts.
        On some points I raise the white flag,however when it comes to Mr S.Domenicaly don,t defend
        the undefendable ” the buck stops with him,”he’s
        on the pit wall,he tick the boxes,period.
        But let us go back to recent times like 2010
        a” ? “why Aldo got the bullet, a superb engineer of Ferrari mould, was his decission to
        keep Alonso out for far to long I doubt very
        much,2011 a year of disaster in Ferrari F1 history, currently on three accassions Alonso
        was keept on one stop strategy a madness,second
        a far to early pitt call, the same yesterday at Silverstone.please I am a Ferrarist through
        and through have been a Ferrari dealer till 95
        met the great man,I am retired now and it hurts me to see dead wood like Massa and Domenicaly with a zero performance for so long.

  27. Chi-Square says:

    Webber and Alonso were very close in performance in this race. In the latter part of the race Webber just seemed to have done just a little bit more to edge Alonso and that is not a trivial thing against the man rightfully regarded as the best performing driver in the current Formula One grid.

    1. Pasq says:

      Possibly could have stretched both stints on hard tyre so not too long on softs at the end, could have pushed on them for maybe last ten laps, but post race interview with alonso now suggests that they were worried about rain so there may have been no need to use softs at all!

      1. kfzmeister says:

        Agree with the longer hard stints suggestion.

  28. Rob Newman says:

    Quite a good race. In the end the better man and the right man won this time – unlike in Valencia where Red Bull suffered mechanical failure or last year at Silverstone where Red Bull had pit stop issues and Ferrari getting a little helping hand with blown diffusers from FIA. In both those occasions the wrong driver went on to win.

    I am Very happy for Webber. That was a fantastic overtaking move which gave him the victory.

    I wouldn’t blame Maldonado fully for that accident. Kimi avoided a similar incident so Sergio could have avoided it. At Valencia some pundits were saying Maldonado should have gone to the run-off area. Sergio could have done the same just like Kimi did.

    Massa did a very good job in a car which is actually designed for his team mate. Hope he gets a podium soon.

    Grosjean looks to be the danger man. His time will come soon and he will spring a few surprises.

    1. irish con says:

      i have to say i always never think your right. and again today is no different. not making any sense to me.

    2. Cozza says:

      What do you mean wrong driver?
      The right driver to win any GP is an F1 driver.
      The wrong driver is probably a taxi driver outside the gate.

    3. Quattro_T says:

      “… and Ferrari getting a little helping hand with blown diffusers from FIA.”

      If I remember it correctly it was Redbull (not Ferrari) who was found guilty of using movable parts (exhaust blown diffuser) to generate downforce at the back of their cars. Ferrari (and other teams) agreed to not demand it to be removed completely (and put thereby themselfs at disadvantaged), since Renault (Red Bull engine supplier) cryed that their engine could not handle removing that (not so legal) downforce generating technology.

      Do some research before spreading misleading information!

      1. Rob Newman says:

        You need to read about the engine mapping saga and the mid season rule change last July. A rule which was for just one race. Isn’t it surprising all this happened when Ferrari celebrated their 60th anniversary? Coincidence, eh?

      2. ida says:

        My eyes were opened up to a new world when i first read one of your posts around the Spanish GP. Very well written. Short, sharp, controversial, ill informed comments always cause a stir. I must admit i search for your post race analysis with some anticipation now. I know you’ve done it for a laugh cos if those thoughts were real, the debates with other posters would be awesome! So if your gonna do this, dont be lazy and do it properly. Reply to people! You should be backing up your nonsense with even more nonsense mixed in with more misinformation …then you would have had a ROB NEWMAN that we all could have been proud of. Dont make me create a new member to the JAF1 forum… a controversial spaniard, whos anti McLaren and anti Lewis stance will make people wanna reply so bad….I will call him ROBERTO NUEVOHOMBRE (insert spanish guitar music now)

    4. Brace says:

      Are you serious?
      I guess you are just trying to cause some argument, by intentionally making controversial, polarizing and overly biased statements.

    5. KRB says:

      Fantastic overtaking move?!?! It was a decent overtake, nothing more. DRS assisted. If an F1 driver can’t effect an overtake with DRS assistance on that bit of track, then they don’t deserve to be in F1.

      I’m pretty sure Rob works in MK for RBR.

  29. Ankit says:

    Hi James

    Fun race and an amazing victory for Webber. After the 2nd round of stops I was confident Alonso had it in the bag but the final laps were completely unexpected.

    As an aside would love it if you could restart the technical feature you had in 2010

    1. James Allen says:

      Well you might just get what you want…

  30. Alex says:

    Another race where if not for the “IF that never happened” Lotus could have won.

  31. the pimp's main prophet says:

    Alonso would lead the championship by 27 points, would he have won. Now it’s only 13 points. I’m sure Alonso considers to have lost 14 points today…

    1. JackFlash says:

      Alonso only lost WDC ground to one man – Webber. He extended the WDC lead over everyone else. Not all doom n gloom in that. JF

  32. Andras F. says:

    Hello All,
    Am I saw right that Williams garage was at the end of the pitlane? Does anyone know why?

    1. Luke says:

      Didn’t see it myself, but if they were, its all political. The new Silverstone pitlane obscures half the teams garages from the fans in the opposite grand stand. So to give the Brits a bit of cheer(and to band aid a bit of design stuff-up), they move teams around from their regular garages so the fans can see the stops of some teams. Not sure what end Williams was at, but being a local favourite, I imagine they were at the end where the fans could see.

    2. JackFlash says:

      Yes. The new Pitlane complex built at Silverstone is actually below racetrack level by a couple of metres at the end entering back onto the track. So, visibility of the garages and pitstop action at that end of the pitlane are quite limited (obscured) to the crowds in the Pitstraight Grandstands opposite. I heard on SkyF1 commentary from Martin Brundle (I think) that the race organisers (or FIA?) allowed a re-ordering of pit garages to let the Big 4 teams be more pit-visible by positions mid-straight.

      Someone may correct me, but I am certain this was the reason for the odd pit garage orders this weekend. JF

  33. Krishna says:

    Fantastic race after yesterday’s qualifying lottery!

    The late pass by Webber on Alonso brought great joy and great racing from Massa, Raikkonen, & Grosjean made it all the more interesting.

    Sadly, Hamilton and Schumacher didn’t have the pace to compete today.

    And boy is Maldonado a rebel. I don’t think the 10000 Euro fine is enough let alone all of the previous fines he’s received…

    James, I watched as Nico Hulk got passed by Senna however, I am not certain as to why he went off the track as he did…letting Button by. What happened there?

  34. Toolwyn says:

    So, to sum it up, Alonso got “tyred” in the closing stages of the race. Honestly, I am getting “tyred” of reading every other week that the “tires” decided the outcome of yet another race (pun fully intended). Am I the only one?

    1. ida says:

      Yes you are the only person who would have used “quotes” around his “puns” and then alerted us to the fact that you did in fact intentionally use them as “puns”……..

      1. Tolwyn says:

        How very sad that you are the only one to take that personally. I was merely pointing out that the outcome of the race was yet again dictated by the tyres (and DRS for that matter) – with several laps to go it was pretty clear that Alonso would be a sitting duck and would have ro yield the lead.

  35. Elie says:

    Great result so pleased for Mark! I don’t want to see that Ferrari win too often ! I cannot believe anyone could say that was not interesting ( Manish) – this was a good race. As predicted -Red Bull would be strong in the dry and what I think happened was Mclaren left the set up a little soft in case of late rain- just trying to read between the lines on Whitmarshs comments after the race. .James i would be interested to know if it was more set up compromise than Mclarens oughtright pace. I don’t think most teams were counting on a full dry race so the race was always going to be slightly unpredictable from tyre & set up as they all had very little dry running over the weekend .

    Don’t we all wish Lotus can qualify just that little bit better ?? but then you can’t have it all I guess. I love watching Kimi race he is so good at having a go and avoiding trouble, and he was still the quickest at the very end taking time from the leaders.

    I think the weather uncertainty from Sat / Sun mixed up the outright order a little . Red Bull will continue to dominate if Mclaren & Ferrari don’t get more from their updates . Bring on Hokenhiem !

    1. Ro_Jo says:

      I think Kimi quallied pretty well without KERS and for starting Q1 on the full wets and having to go in and change to inters. The first corner of the first lap messed his race up a bit but he’s brought in another solid bunch of points. Wish Lotus had just pitted him in China and he would have been a points finisher in every single race… Anyway – races always seem better won on a Monday

  36. shakaku says:

    Congratulations to Webber, special mention to Grosjean and his passing moves.

  37. Anand R says:

    James, do you think this race sees Mclaren and the drivers out of contention? Silverstone was their big upgrade weekend after weeks of no upgrades, yet they seem to be the 5th best team only slightly ahead of Sauber and Williams in pace (Button couldn’t get past Bruno Senna for all he tried).

    Looks like their strategy to go with a more aesthetic but less efficient front section is proving detrimental now in the development race. Way back in February, Gary Anderson commented that the Mclaren design leaves little room for in-season development and he is proving right.

    Heads will/should roll at Mclaren if they indeed finish 3rd/4th/5th in the Constructors. And with this race, I have a gut feeling that Lewis will say good-bye to the team he clearly loves to be with. But wins are all that count and look at ‘Drinks Company’ Red Bull… incredible pace of development under the stewardship of Adrian Newey. Even Ferrari is progressing well, albeit its easier in their case as the car had lots of room to improve.

  38. Charalampos says:

    It starts to look like 2010 Alonso and webber in front while better is trailing.

    Pastor needs to do him self a favor and calm down. He is very fast but he needs to overcome his bad self.

    It would be nice to see webber finishing in front of vetted for the championship just for a change. The way he won this race was very calm and he lost the championship in 2010 because he could not keep his calmness and have mediocre results in the last races. Maybe if luck is with him this year as in 2010 he could make it.

    When will grosjean win a race?

  39. Jude says:

    What has happened to Webber’s DRS and KERS? They have been way too reliable lately; Redbull better get their act together !!

    1. ida says:

      Don’t worry, Webbo’s mechanics are bound to go back to last years favourite prank sooner than later…. the old pull the park break up while at the stops trick…Webbo always falls for it!!
      If that doesnt work im sure Helmut Marko (Dick Dastardly) and Vettel (Muttley) have something up their sleeve

    2. Lezza says:

      Love it.

    3. Nathan says:

      Ha! Funniest comment so far.

      I think Webo is finally getting his head around the tyres. I notice he paces himself much better now and isn’t the first to head to the pits for new tyres like in the past.

  40. ETM says:

    How can people excuse Maldonado?  He chose the inside line, braked too late, missed the apex by a mile and still had his car at a shallow angle well after the proper apex point. By the time he looped his car he was no longer trying to make the turn, he was trying to avoid running into Perez.  How much more room can people expect Perez to yield when he already gave Maldonado twice as much room as he should have needed. 

  41. Vantro says:

    Lotus was very quick today. If they only could quali better they should be able to win. Surprising to see Romain so high up, but if you look at it is maybe not so strange anyway. He could race all the race on the better tyres (even if he had to stretch the stints a little longer). He also could race more in free space. And the cars he came up to in the beginning he could easily pass (they were much slower). Kimi was not able to use his pace in the majority of the race. Being stuck behind cars that was almost as quick as him. A little bit more luck at the first lap and he could have a much better race.

    1. DK says:

      Grojean was fast but he was helped by Maldonado/Perez incident.

  42. Simon Russell says:

    I left the Red Button Forum about half way into it. Even the presenters looked uncomfortable and it felt embarrassing. The Forum was compelling viewing in the past. Maybe with less budget this year, that has affected it?

    I also agree about DC. By the way, I thought his grid walk was a shambles. He ended up interviewing Eddie Jordan!

  43. Steve Zodiac says:

    Good race seemed to be ruined by the producer showing lots of views of film celebs/tyre walls etc. ( both about the same in terms of interest!). Not an Alonso fan but he is definately a class driver. Not a Grosjean fan but he is consistantly quick and was undoubtedly “driver of the day”. Maldonado, first up against the wall when I’m in charge!!

    1. pargo says:

      Maybe you should consider becoming an Alonso and Grosjean fan!

  44. Steve Zodiac says:

    Oh yeah, brilliant from Mark Webber.

  45. Bring Back Murray says:

    I agree. The grid-walk was a joke wasn’t it.

    They should cut their losses on that and find something else to do.

    1. Bring Back Murray says:

      (Was supposed to reply to comment #33)

  46. Jenks says:

    I’m very happy with a Webber win.

    Maldonado is rapidly becoming the bogie man of F1. Lewis will be pleased.

    Just one question. That was Sutil at the GP wasn’t it? Did a team invite him or did he buy a ticket?

    1. MikeyB says:

      Sutil’s picked up some work with Sky Germany, apparently:
      http://motorsport.nextgen-auto.com/Sutil-still-pushing-for-F1-comeback,44754.html

    2. FerrariFan says:

      he seemed to be in a garage

  47. Sergio says:

    Red Bull is the strongest team right now. I ‘m scared thinking of next video edit from F1 official website with dozens of replays of Webber’s pass to ALO and sad faces of Ferrari Garage.

  48. IP says:

    James,

    Webber is looking like more of a match for Vettel this season, as opposed to last year. Has it just taken him a year to get over the disappointment of 2010?

    As for Pastor Mardonaro, and the other BTCC wannabe drivers, could they maybe learn a thing or two about overtaking from webber and alonso? They’ve had some epic battles over the years!

    Cheers

  49. Damien K says:

    Guy’s hindsight is a wonderful thing, a lot of people telling us how it was going to turn out(matter of factly). Maybe some consulting work is on your horizon for a teams strategist position so they don’t make any more mistakes.

    There have been a lot of calls for Domenicaly’s head over the past few weeks, has anyone stopped to think that along with Alonso’s great driving he is another reason that Ferrari is leading the WDC, the car they are using is not the class of the field is it ? Anyone working for Ferrari get scrutinised for for every tiny thing that is not a win.

    James, hearing the guys talk about the HP battle of the engines it would be interesting to know the facts about them. Do you think that when these engines have finished their service next year we will find out the actual numbers/ could we find out the numbers ? A lot of people might be quite surprised, for example a car with a lot of downforce will be slower in a straight line .ie Redbull. Yet the Lotus’s with the same engine are quite often at the top of the speed trap at almost every circuit ?

    Did any cartoon ever get drawn up with the Alonso/ Webber joke “Mark, Fernando is faster than you……. Well he’ll be able to get by then wont he !” =>

    Great drive Mark i hope this is your year.

    Sorry about the length guys.

  50. Brendan says:

    Why do you have Vergne ahead of Ricciardo?

    13. Vergne Toro Rosso + 51.200
    14. Ricciardo Toro Rosso + 53.300

    From my memory Daniel finished ahead of Vergne.

    1. KRB says:

      Brendan = Daniel Ricciardo

      :-)

  51. MikeyB says:

    The Toro Rosso placings are transposed in the results at the top – Ricciardo pipped Vergne by 2 seconds.

  52. KRB says:

    Great win for Webber, and the RB8 is the car to beat now. Terribly disappointing day as a McLaren fan … they are floundering (though credit where credit’s due, their pitstops today were phenomenal). Where did that 5-tenth’s advantage from Barcelona go? Maybe they didn’t have as good a dry setup as the other teams today, but still it is what it is. They’re still nowhere on the tires.

    Has the mandated floor change really hurt them that badly? I suppose it came at a most inopportune time, as there were perhaps developments meant to link up with that design that then had to be rethought, etc. But RBR dealt with a floor change effectively enough, though now it’s clear they were always going to be changing their floor at Valencia anyways (Webber alluded to this in the Thursday presser in Canada).

    It seems now, with the tires as they are, that the MP4-27 is now the 4th fastest car, after the RB8, F2012, and the Lotus. If I was Lewis, and there was a chance to go to RBR and link up with Newey, I’d do it in a NY second!

    Macca best in the development race??? Doesn’t look like it, AT ALL.

    And with Murray basically crying uncle after failing to force the 2nd set tie-break, an awful Sunday for British sportsmen.

  53. Yos says:

    Mclaren started the year with the best car but now they are even behind the sauber and williams which makes them 6th best team just infront of str. I think they should have come out with the higher nose configuration jsut like the othes right from the start. Now they may need 3-4 more races to get back to the top by that time Alonso and the redbulls will have got more than 80 points advantage over hamilton and with one or two pit stop set backs lewis will lose another 20 points…chamionship for hamilton is dead but they can at least finish maybe in the top 4 r if they can beat the lotus 3rd at the end of the year.

    1. KRB says:

      Dunno about 6th fastest, but 4th definitely (RBR, Ferrari and Lotus ahead of them). Hard for me to believe that it’s down to the chassis, at least on the aero side. It’s all down to how the car can’t look after the tires while maintaining a competitive pace.

      If they continue on as they have done, then yes, the championship is over for the team and both drivers. But there could just as easily be more twists and turns in the championship yet. I just remember the second-half of 2005 … the McLaren won 7 of the last 9 races that year (Raikkonen won 4; Montoya won 3).

      In that year McLaren left it too late (common refrain), plus there was no other team besides Renault consistently a threat for wins. So Alonso was able to withstand KR’s late challenge by scoring podiums.

      This year if McLaren were able to get back on top, and clearly on top, then RBR and Ferrari will take points off each other. I’m not holding out much hope, but ya never know.

  54. Thabang says:

    Was it just my imagination, or did Button “block” Hamilton for a couple of corners knowingly that the latter is quicker and only to succumb rather easily to the Lotus? Surely it can’t be that Jenson deliberately hindered his team-mate’s progress.

    1. KRB says:

      Yeah, I was thinking the same thing! Not that it would’ve mattered. Grosjean would’ve passed Hamilton eventually, but Button did absolutely no favours for Hamilton (and McLaren), while pretty much rolling over right away for Grosjean after Hamilton had passed. Button’s useless.

      This isn’t the first time Button has done this either, yet I can’t recall an instance where LH has held up Button if team strategy called for him to stand aside.

  55. Peter says:

    I was intrigued by the British GP. I noticed that Lewis Hamilton, while entering the pits in order to make his first stop, virtually overtook other drivers (according to the standings on TV). It appears that the fastest way to finish a lap while being in the Stowe corner is not via the regular track, but via the pits entry.

    This reminded me to Ayrton Senna’s fastest lap in Donington ’93, which was set due to mistakenly entering the pits. I also had in mind Schumacher’s controversial race win in the 98 British GP, as he was penalized but served the stop&go penalty in the ultimate lap.

    Now this leaves two questions:

    - Is it still allowed to finish the race in the pit street?
    - Do we have evidence that the fastest way to drive the third sector of the Silverstone track is via the pit street? Could Alonso have won the race that way if he would have been any closer to Webber?

    All the best from the Netherlands, sweet country without Grand Prix winners :(

    1. ida says:

      Good question about pits but this is what you should focus on….Your Dutch pride!!! You got Zandvoort, Assen, Jos ‘the boss’ Verstappen, Christijan Albers, Robert Doornbos and the one and only Jan Lammers…For me thats worth more than all of schumi’s gift wrapped GP wins.

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