An online poll on JA on F1 overnight has shown that from a sample of over 3,500 fans polled, 90% of them thought that the Grand Prix yesterday was really good and that the racing in China was entertaining.
This contrasts with the mixed feelings after the first races, where there was too much action in Malaysia and not enough in Melbourne.
Not everyone is happy about the new style racing, with around 10% still feeling that the DRS and the high wear Pirelli tyres make the racing artificial.
Meanwhile 55% of a poll of 6,000 JA on F1 fans thought Mark Webber was the Driver of the Day for his charge through the field, ahead of race winner Lewis Hamilton who polled 35%.
I’ve picked out two points of view from fans which sum up the general mood about the spectacle we saw yesterday, however.
Posting this morning, Simon said, “I understand [the] point that tyres are maybe of too much importance to the pace of an F1 car, but I take a different point of view than this is “manufactured racing”.
“If looked at from a completely different standpoint, F1 itself is a manufactured thing, everything is manufactured, the engine, the front and rear wings, the bodywork and everything. A few years ago it was the double diffuser that was the difference between Brawn and the rest of the field, now tyres is the differences. Because the cars from the tops teams are so close in terms of performance, any advantage would be made to looked to be a great advantage, I can’t see someone from the lower teams starting from 18th and finishing 3rd, and at the end, everyone is given the same number of set of tyres, same rules for everyone.
“But all in all, this is a personal preference. I would rather see this type of races than everyone finishing the race in order of what they qualify with no overtaking, and wouldn’t mind if everyone try to qualify 18th and overtake people to try to win a GP!”
Meanwhile regular contributor Trent said, “After watching dozens of races over the years without a SINGLE top-6 overtaking manoeuver (outside the pits), give me this formula any day.
I’m starting to think even the Spanish and Hungarian GPs could be worth watching this year!!”
It’s not all positives, though. Although the last minute adjustment to the DRS zone made for a good compromise in overtaking, it’s clear that some teams are still having problems with the DRS and KERS. Michael Schumacher lost some time in qualifying with a DRS problem on the penultimate corner and in the race Fernando Alonso had issues for the second race in succession.
A BBC producer spotted Alonso’s DRS opening after Turn 14 as he battled with Schumacher, in an area where it should not have been activated. It only opened for a couple of seconds, but it raised questions about the synchronisation of the system.
According to the BBC, the FIA explanation of the glitch was that Alonso’s system was activated late. Instead of opening 750 metres before Turn 14, it opened 300m before and was still active after the corner.
It’s clear he didn’t gain any advantage from it and it was a glitch so no penalty applies. But the teams have three weeks to perfect the DRS system before the next race in Turkey, where it will again play a major role in the racing.