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Hamilton Holds Off Rosberg To Win Fascinating “Battle of the taxi drivers”
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Posted By:   |  06 Apr 2014   |  6:50 pm GMT  |  953 comments

If Formula 1 in 2014 is a battle of the taxi drivers, as Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo called it this morning, then it could catch on.

Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg gave an exemplary display of close racing today to have a race-long battle in the Bahrain Grand Prix, with Hamilton claiming victory at the Sakhir circuit following an enthralling race, in which Sergio Perez completed the podium. He now has two victories to Rosberg’s one, but the German still leads the world championship.

It is the 24th victory of Hamilton’s career, equalling the tally of Juan Manuel Fangio, and gives Mercedes their second one-two in succession.

“It’s a long time since I had a race like that,” said Hamilton. “My weekend started off well but I didn’t really have great pace for qualifying and the race. I knew that I needed a good start and to go into the first corner in the lead was crucial to my race this evening.

“From there, it was such a battle. Nico drove fantastically well and, in all honesty, he had the pace on me today but I managed to hold on.”

Bahrain under lights produced a fascinating race, not just between the Mercedes drivers, but among team mates at Williams and Force India, and between Red Bulls and Ferraris too. There were DRS overtakes but many non-DRS overtakes too in a thrilling 57 laps.

The battles throughout the field culminated in a ten-lap sprint to the finish following a late Safety Car period following a spectacular roll for Esteban Gutierrez.

With Hamilton snatching the lead from Rosberg at the start line, the Briton established a one second lead as the pair disappeared from the following cars. As the first phase of pit stops approached Rosberg decided to attack and on laps 18 and 19 the pair staged a furious fight, with Hamilton on the limit to retain his lead.

A late braking manoeuvre in to turn one saw Rosberg momentarily take first place, only for his team-mate to switch back on the inside and regain the lead.

A lap later and Rosberg attempted the same move, holding the inside line as both cars locked up in the heavy braking zone. The German was more successful this time around, holding the lead on the run up to turn four as Hamilton switched sides behind.

The two raced wheel to wheel through the downhill chicane complex with Hamilton once again taking back the lead of the race, before pitting at the end of the lap for a second set of soft tyres with Rosberg staying out a further two laps before a switch to the medium compound tyre.

Mercedes were able to complete the race on two stops, with each driver opting for a different strategy. Rosberg went for the medium tyre in order to have a crack at Hamilton at the end on the faster soft tyre at a time when Hamilton would be on the medium. Then luck swing dramatically Rosberg’s way with the Safety Car, which cut Hamilton’s 10 second lead and seemed to turn the race in Rosberg’s favour as the two cars pitted line astern, Hamilton for mediums and Rosberg for softs.

At the restart, Rosberg attacked, knowing that he had to take advantage of the soft tyre’s 6/10ths of a second performance advantage straight away. Twice he made his way up the inside in to Schumacher corner, Turn One, only for Hamilton to once again switch back and hold position.

It was a remarkable display by Hamilton, who managed to hold off his team mate, despite having clearly the slower tyre.

After chasing each other around, Rosberg’s soft tyres began to overheat and he dropped back and followed his team-mate home to increase Mercedes’ lead in the Constructors’ Championship, with Force India on 44 points the closest to Mercedes’ 111.

Behind, the battle for third swung in numerous directions as Valterri Bottas lost the initiative at the start. Felipe Massa held the final podium spot in the opening phase of the race due to a brilliant start from seventh to third by the first corner.

He opted to pit two laps later than team-mate Valtteri Bottas, the Finn taking third place through use of the under-cut as the pair sat ahead of the Force India duo.

With two-stopping Perez and Nico Hulkenberg showing stronger pace as the race wore on, they were able to hold third and fourth position prior to the Safety Car, which could have wrecked their race when it came about as Pastor Maldonado exited the pits, tagging the Sauber of Esteban Gutierrez in the exit of turn one and flipping the Mexican in to a barrel roll.

At the restart, the closely bunched field gave Red Bull drivers on the faster soft the chance to move up after a quiet race at the tail end of the points positions.

Sebastian Vettel led his young team-mate, before the Australian made use of the DRS-zone to move past the world champion in to turn one.

We were in unfamiliar territory with Red Bull in this race; first the team instructed Vettel to let his team mate through in the first stint as he was on the faster tyre at the time, then in the final stint Ricciardo showed himself as the faster of the two as he passed the world champion and set about chasing the Force india duo, taking fourth from Hulkenberg before quickly hunting down Perez, eventually ending the race less than a second behind and taking his first points for Red Bull with a good drive from thirteenth place on the grid.

It was his first points finish of 2014 and nothing less than he deserved after a sensational start to his Red Bull career.

Vettel was unable to take fifth place from Hulkenberg, the two countrymen completing the top six.

After running third and fourth earlier in the race, the Williams pair eventually came home in seventh and eighth with Massa getting the better of Bottas.
They headed the Ferrari pair of Fernando Alonso and Kimi Raikkonen, who completed the top ten.

Hamilton has the trophy tonight and Rosberg is gutted to have lost to his old friend, especially after the safety car seemed to have given him an open goal.

But, if it’s not too much of a cliché, Formula 1 was the winner in this race. Against a backdrop of carping and criticism about it being “Formula Boredom” it was one of the most exciting races for a generation.

And with Rosberg and Hamilton in this kind of mood and no team orders from Mercedes, there is much to look forward to in the coming races.

Bahrain Grand Prix, Sakhir, Race, 57 Laps
1. Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1h38m42.743
2. Nico Rosberg Mercedes +1.085s
3. Sergio Perez Force India +24.067s
4. Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull +24.489s
5. Nico Hulkenberg Force India +28.654s
6. Sebastian Vettel Red Bull +29.879s
7. Felipe Massa Williams +31.200s
8. Valtteri Bottas Williams +31.800s
9. Fernando Alonso Ferrari +32.500s
10. Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari +33.400s
11. Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso +41.300s
12. Romain Grosjean Lotus +43.100s
13. Max Chilton Marussia +59.900s
14. Pastor Maldonado Lotus +1m02.800s
15. Kamui Kobayashi Caterham +1m27.900s
16. Jules Bianchi Marussia +1 lap
17. Jenson Button McLaren +2 laps

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953 comments

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1

Wow, what a fantastic race!

But I do feel like I’ve been cheated these past few years by Red Bull and their conniving team orders - To see Mercedes battling it out at the front shows what we’ve been missing! Who cares if they’re miles ahead when they race like this.

By the way, congrats to Ricardo for putting Vettel in his place!

2

Not sure i'd agree with the pundits about what a great race it was. Let's face it: the ending was set up by the safety car. without it, another boring race at the front anyway. if we want this kind of ending, why not just bring out the safety car at every race? Oh yeah, someone already thought of that! It is called NASCAR! What a joke!

3

Wow, what a fantastic blog response!

James, you must have pushed over the last milestone for stickiness on an internet site!

Wow!

Is it because people, chanting to the beat of the knee-jerk reactionary naysayers, the poeple were expecting stifling non-competition?

Or is just because the beloved Lewis won a seemingly tight two-car race (against the awful Hum, at that?)

Anyhow, way to go on the web suite and reporting; there are no traditional media avenues that are truly in your formula.

4

RAI about the Ferrari: It's not like there is a massive problem in handling, we are just lacking the downforce and the speed and the horsepower.

OK, so you miss downforce, speed and BHP, what is really good then 😉

5

And one race is all that's required to write off Seb!! Funny 🙂

Lewis was awesome - his head is in the right space for now... can he hold on to it?

6

If ever there was a race that deserved double points - This one was it! My best race in the 15 years I have followed F1. Super good show by Mercedes!

7

Exciting race yes, race craft lacking by Rosberg.

Hamilton owes Rosberg big time, any other driver would have passed and sealed the result in 1 or 2 attempts. Put Alonso, Vettel, Raikonnen etc and it would be game over.

I mean seriously, all Rossberg had to do was park his car on the apex of turn 1, and not give Hamilton a chance at aiming back on the inside. He did the same thing like 4 or 5 times! Definition of Insanity...

Then when Rossberg finally gets ahead he stays on the outside of turn 4, gifting Hamilton the inside line!

Seriously Rossberg on softer tyres and could not pass with so many opportunities, that was ridiculous! These guys are supposed to be too notch drivers, race craft from Rossberg made Hamilton look good.

8

Man, you're seriously underestimating both driver's immense talent--especially Hamilton's!

There's more to it than you make it out to be.... Lewis was simply faking Nico out on deep, corner braking, then undercutting Rosberg on corner exit. Not by any means an easy task with F1 Turbo power!

9

I only got to watch the race from lap 24 because I didn't wake up in time. The race starts at 1am here in Australia, now I'm absolutely kicking myself...

What a race! Great job by Lewis and Nico on that battle. Lewis currently has the upper hand but Nico is always there, he will get his time soon methinks.

Dan really is not intimitated by his teammate. He is laying down the gauntlet every chance he gets at the moment. He is a star in the making thats for sure.

Good job by Force India drivers and Williams as well.

Shame on Ferrari. They should really look at themselves instead of constantly bickering and pointing fingers. No one else to blame here but Ferrari itself. Their drivers are being wasted. LDM will soon have knives in between peoples teeth, he should look on the mirror while doing it to himself.

Why is Maldonado still im F1? So Ricciardo gets a stop/go and 10 place grid penalty for an error by the team. But Maldonado gets a stop/go penalty only? Does he need to seriously hurt a driver before this gets a look at? He doesn't belong in F1. Period.

Btw, best looking trophy for Lewis I've seen in a while.

10

Exactly! Have you noticed Lewis reaction when he saw the trophy?

11

Hahaha I am in Australia too, and I knew I wasn't going to wake up on time so I recorded it and made sure the news alerts on my phone were off. Woke up at 4.30am this morning and watched for a good 2 hours before heading to work. What a fantastic race it was.

I am a Hamilton fan, but I liked Rosberg's response. He could still smile and fool around with Hamilton. I am not sure how Hamilton would react if he was on the losing end next time around. He doesn't come across as a good loser to me, but maybe I am wrong.

12

hamilton doesn't know how to be on the losing end. he only wins. even alonso couldn't beat hamilton in a wheel to wheel combat in the same car albeit henbane the then youngest ever back to back double world champion, who had just seen off schumacher(best wishes) into retirement and hamilton was a rookie. this is all alonso could manage.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3MeTHySzddY

13

Maybe we can consentrate on the racing now instead of having to listen to Ferrari and RBR throwing tantrums.

15

It looks like the best of the racing we're going to be seeing this year, will be between these two guys Hamilton and Rosberg, the Mercedes team so far this tournament have been flawless. http://www.f1worldtour.com

16

Well Exactly, the whole world heard Paddy speak to the drivers and only Ted decided that it was team orders 'plain and clear' as he put it.

What a fantastic race, battles all the way down through the mid-field! Fuel still hasn't really come into play, I was really worried before the season started that it would be an economy drive but not one race has really been impacted by fuel yet! HOORAY! No ridiculous tyres either! Hooray again. ERS seems to be working right, i.e. it's not too easy to overtake - that's a third hooray right there.

Realise I'm going to get written off as a HAM fan-boy but....was that a great drive or what? That was HAM from his first couple of seasons but now with extra added control and maturity! Breath-taking.

Seems to be the only F1 teams who are criticising the sport are those that did a terrible job with the engines. They're transparent and embarrassing. Merc did the best job, they rightly get the rewards and they're teaching Pirelli a thing or two about how to use F1 to promote a brand as well 😉

Seems that VET is struggling. Are the doubters about to be proven right this season? Can he drive around a car that does not suit him? Can he elevate a car like all the best drivers? Not to Merc level yet but he should be able to push that car to the second row/podium shouldn't he?

And I still really like the sound of these new engines, I love being able to hear the engineering at work and I love being able to hear the environment when the camera gives us a driver's perspective.

The only thing wrong with F1 right now (as is often the case)is the people who run it (the teams and the politicians).

17

New to this forum but have quickly picked up that Bob really doesn't like Hamilton, trying to argue that Hamilton didn't have to work hard in defense is rather poor I feel.

Credit where credit is due I say. Not the only driver that deserves credit for that race. Watched since the early 70s and that was fine driving for the win by any standards.

18

Why is Vettel struggling? It's one race, where he had problems all weekend.

He also had 'software' problems in Australia.

We all know where he finished in Malaysia.

Getting so tired of these shortsighted opinions.

19

Good observation about Ted. The guy is a sensationalist & this season particularly seems to be all over the place. Someone & Sky needs to pull him aside & have a few strong words.

20
Alexander Supertramp

Have to disagree on Hamilton. My view is that he's been very good in the past years as well (2011 being the exception) with 2012 a very good example. He was good in 2013, but the thing about Lewis is he doesn't care about P2 and above. So the moment he realised there was no fighting Seb he remained "just" a very good driver. Now he's great because he smells victory, he's adding those couple percents that make very good drivers like himself "great".

21

@ Alexander Supertramp. I love Hamilton's abilities on the race track but isn't kind of unfair to his employers to give up on P2 just because he knows he doesn't have the car to get P1. You help your team by scoring the most points. More points more money. I think this is part of what cost him the championship in 07. Japan and Brazil comes to mind.

I think this is what separates him from Alonso, who celebrated 9th with a fist pump today because he knows that he squeezed everything out of that car.

22

Wayne, that was a great race and it was a well driven race from Hamilton, no doubt.

But let's get real here - Hamilton didn't win that race - Rosberg lost that race and he knew it!

I honestly believe that any of the other top 4 or 5 drivers would have nailed Hamilton after the safety car if they were in Rosberg's car.

I mean, c'mon! Rosberg has some mega speed but his race craft leaves a lot to be desired! He's so frustrating to watch! 4 times trying the same unsuccessful move around the outside of turn 4!!

Like I said, Hamilton defended well but all that really entailed was driving his line - Rosberg did all the hard work for him and expertly positioned his car on the outside ready to be pushed off the track!

23

Let me clarify - of course the safety car put Rosberg on Hamilton's tail. Without it, I doubt he would have been able to catch him. But the fact is there was a safety car and Rosberg was on his tail.

From that point on, Rosberg lost the race and he knew it. Did you not see how devastated he was after the race? He KNEW he should have won that.

And no, Hamilton did nothing special in defending turn 4 - he blocked the inside, as you do, and then simply drove through the corner. He didn't have to do anything else because Rosberg kept trying to go around the outside again and again.

He should have cut back and gone up the inside, just like Hamilton did to him and like many others did during the race.

In other words, his defending job could have been much harder. I think we can all agree that Rosberg made it easier for him than it could have been.

However, all in all it was a great race and a great drive from Hamilton.

24

I have to disagree. Hamilton made sure Rosberg's window of attack was very small, and slammed it shut every time. Eventually, Rosberg's tires started failing, and he no longer had the speed.

Re-watch it, if you can, and watch how Hamilton shifted his approach to the turns every time Rosberg got close enough for the pass-- and used that different line to re-take the position immediately.

25

Bob - if it wasn't for the safety car, Rosberg would be on the 'faster' tyre and chasing down a 13 second lead with 17 laps to go. Doubt he would have made that from what he showed during the race. But Hamilton and Rosberg were both equal chances of winning it.

26

Lol.. What?

Rosberg "lost" the race?

If it wasn't for the safety car, he wouldn't have been anywhere!

Hamilton has the measure of Rosberg.

27

"Like I said, Hamilton defended well but all that really entailed was driving his line "

What race where you watching.?

Hamilton was off line numerous times using every tactic in the book to defend and retake his position.

A masterclass in defensive driving.

28

Hamilton did clearly win that race, and the only way Nico got close was due to the safety car.

As much as I like Mercedes and Hamilton, I do hope that some-one closes the gap before the summer break.

But to suggest that Hamilton didn't win that, sounds like a Vettel fan that has suddenly realised that French cars don't do electrical systems very well.

29

What you don't seem to understand is this? How was Hamilton able to keep pace given the fact that his tires were slower during the last stng. The guy is a genius. Alonso would not have passed lewis and as for Vettel we now know how bad webber was. Riccardo is putting him in his place alright. Go lewis go.

30

It definitely did not just entail HAM driving his natural line, Bob, really it didn't. Neither in defending or re-passing each time.

31

You know....to lose Mercedes a guaranteed 1-2 is to lose favor within the team instantly. Rosberg though...OK...I'll still lead this after this race. But this will blow up.

32

If the positions had been reversed I do think Hamilton would have passed Rosberg.

33

It seems Vettel is not as fast as others thought when you put a fast driver alongside him and take away the blown diffuser which Vettel mastered.

Thank you to Mercedes, Force India and Williams for letting their drivers race.

And yet again, Alonso outscores Kimi. Give the guy a car..

34

Yeah right - after 4 championship, you still need more time for him to prove & one bad race & you right him off - have some consistency in your thought process.

35

are you suggesting that vettel is a fake time world champion?

judge him at the end of the season.

36

@krischar, we'll find out if you're right about vettel being a fake time champion by the end of the season or better still over the number of seasons he's teammates with ricciardo.

you will see the real champion emerge.

37

@ Aveli

yes vettel is a fake 4X WDC. You have called it right

Vettel was protected by EBD and the team entourage for the last four seasons over Webber. Daniel have proved it right from the outset. The way Daniel muscled his way past vettel into turn says a lot about the kid's potential. I cert this will be the pattern going forward through out the season

vettel starts P10 and ends up behind daniel, while daniel from P13 to almost P3 you beauty. Fantastic drive daniel keep it going

38

Don't know about Mister, but I (not-a-Vettel-fan) wouldn't suggest that. I think he was lucky in 2010 and 2012 (Ferrari mistake, and McLaren implosion, respectively).

I think he's a very fast driver, but was a very immature driver when he won the WDC the first time, and hasn't (yet) had to deal with a bad season.

I expect this season will make him a much better driver, and may help his negative image.

39

He is a world champion, but we could only compare him with Webber so far. Now we have Dan, which did not show much speed in the Torro Rosso, compared to Vergne, but it looks like he has the upper hand already in his 1st season at the team.

I would've expected Vettel to massively outperform Dan, as the car would've been built around Vettel more than Dan.

40

What were you watching last 5 years?

Yes, I never recall Vettel and Webber heated on track battles where one didn't give the other an inch. Those 5 seasons together were just a beautiful bromance.

41
Rubinho's Keyfob

The difference is, a turn or two later someone would have been bleating over the radio and telling them to stop.

Big props to Merc for the show today. Reminding them to be respectful of each other, but letting them race.

I have huge respect for Ross Brawn, but I think if he was still on the pitwall he may have made a call for Nico to hold back today in the later laps (to be honest, I think that may have been justified as the only reason Nico was so close at that point was because of the pace car).

Hmm, I wonder if some people will see this as a LACK of management on Merc's side (rather than "having the balls to let them race" it could be seen as "not having the balls to tell them to hold position").

Whatever, it's fascinating. More, please! 🙂

42

While I do agree that we got to see some good racing thanks to Merc / Paddy, the situation is not fully comparable - having a car 2 sec ahead of everyone is different to last year. I see no harm in them backing Lewis once he is ahead - the same can't be said for Nico till he proves he has it in him to show some Magic when needed. He had a great opportunity yesterday - imagine the headlines today if he had pulled it off last night...

43

mercedes managed their drivers better than those who give team orders. the engineers are allowed to do their best for the team. the mechanics are allowed to do their best for the team so why can't the drivers be allowed to do their best for the team?

as far as am concerned, let nature take its course and leave politics out of racing.

44

Merc can afford at this stage even a crash between the drivers. Their car is 2 second clear of the next at some tracks, so if they don;t win this race, they will win the next.

45

@ Sebee A beautiful bromance, really? Is that what u want to call it? All I remember was acrimony between the two. They were not "bros" remember "multi 21" does that ring a bell? Stop, defending Vettel and let him take his beating like a man.

46

You need to get a new Sarcasm Flow Meter. Yours has apparently been drilled into one too many times.

47
Matthew Cheshire

Hey Michael, I know that hit on the head was a big one but surely you can spot sarcasm as heavy as that. Careful on those skis next time?

48

red bull don't know how to put on a show. they just want to win by telling the drivers what to do.

49

It was obvious sarcasm.

50

RB distinctly favoured SV (the wing affair being a case in point) and to be fair, Webber wasn't really a top, top driver. You get the impression RB kept him on because their cars were fast enough to come in 1-2, but they didn't want them battling each other.

Fair play to Merc, they have two top drivers, and they are letting them go for it. They might be streets ahead of the rest of the pack, but if we get to see Hamilton and Rosberg going for it like this every race, it will be a classic year.

51

When Webber drove for Williams, he put Rosberg in the shade, Webber was denied time and time again by the team, not their driver and today proved it. All Webber doubters need to realise he was better than Rosberg and Rosberg put Shumy in the shade. Webber helped that team to 4 world championships, give him some honest credit please.

52

Close on track battles between Vettel and Webber were few and far between. Sure there were a few good ones but the vast majority of races Webber couldn't get Vettel, what were you watching over the last 5 years?

53

@C63

i was actually trying to be sarcastic 😉

54

@powersteer

I would say Turkey 2010 was more an example of crashing rather than close racing. I know that might appear to be flippant, but any fool can crash into their competitor.

What we saw from Ham/Ros displayed unbelievable skill. What we saw from Vet/Web [Turkey 2010] displayed a complete lack of skill.

55

Turkey 2010 comes to mind... thats RBR close racing for you 😉

56

One of the best races in recent history. Thanks mainly to Mercedes letting their drivers race throughout the race.

Same thoughts about Mercedes domination. I dont care as long as its not one driver running away with it every single race. Credits to Mercedes for not pouring cold water on the excitement in the name of bringing it safely home.

What a pathetic car Ferrari has built. I am not sure what LdM was cursing when Alonso was passed by a Force India (I think). He should stop politics and focus on using all that money wisely.

Finally a great day for Force India. I was thinking they could potentially win it if the two Mercs collide and mess it up. It could still happen in some race.

57

Totally agree! I am a Ferrari and an Alonso fan through and through and I am dissapointed that they just cannnot get their act together again and give him the car he deserves. As for Vettel, we are starting to see him being outclassed by Riccicardo, which is what I expected.

58

Ferrari has added some additional talent, but in essence it just keeps doing the same thing year after year- manage only a second-rate car-and thinking that somehow this new year will be better. LdM needs to clean house like Ron Dennis did; should have tried to grab Eric Boullier or Ross Brawn, for example. I think it's evident that Domenicalli doesn't have what's necessary.

59

Oh yea,sacking Martin Whitmarsh has really improved things.........................

60

Not sure if the powertrain is the only issue for us.

We were losing on the high speed corners too.

In fact we were losing everywhere 🙁

The car seems to be sound but...slow!

I don't know whose fault it is and I think it's still too early in the season to call it off but if by the 2nd or 3rd European race we're still fighting for 6th-10th I say LdM has to act.

I mean even if it's not his direct fault, Domenicali has to step down.

LdM needs to start hiring experienced people. Not a fan of Alonso but the drivers are ok even if I expect e bit more from Kimi.

61

Ferrari actually think that by painting the car RED it will go faster!

62

I think that should have been 'what a pathetic engine Ferrari has built' - I'd be willing to bet that their car is basically sound and the engine is the problem. Those merc engines were just driving past them like they were not even there.

63

After the race Kimi said, "we had no down force and no top speed". You should be able to have one or the other. It sounds like lack of power and poor chassis design on top of the highest fuel consumption. Hardly a wonder Montezemolo wants changes to the rules.

They all could take lessons from Force India on getting the most bang for your buck.

64

You know, Luca's always saying he'd love for Ferrari to be able to supply customer chassis-- I bet if he asked Todt to get rid of that pesky rule about only 4 teams per engine, Mercedes would gladly build (and sell) Ferrari a stack of engines. 🙂

65

My meaning being of course, a car normally includes an engine right? So what's wrong with competing on not just chassis and aerodynamics but also on engine

It's an end to end competition. On every car component

And Ferrari have done nowhere near as good a job

Thus the LDM whinging.

66

It's a Ferrari engine, right??

67

I think the cars look a major handful..and that's not the engines fault!

Awesome race...best I've seen for ages..a big pie in the face for all the nay-sayers! 🙂

It must have been double tears for LDM, Ferrari picking up scraps..and a great race that just flushed his 83% down the toilet!

68

Yeah...once the ERS kicks in the car is nowhere 🙁

69

Thanks to Maldonado and the safety car we've seen some exiting racing.

70

maldonado didn't invent the safety car. it has been part of f1 for a long time.

71

Yep, Mondonado has replaced "Joie" Chitwood as my new "Thrill Show" hero.

72
Matthew Cheshire

+1. Not quite up to Ken Carter standard (yet).

73

Gotta hand it to Wayne here.

I'd seen plenty of action before SC came out on track.

But the big question is: WHEN???

When will they cancel Maldonado's super license?

The FIA has given him enough reprimands and penalties. Today Gutierres was very lucky.

I say it's time to act before he kills someone.

74

+1,000,000 Maldonaldo's gotta go. And he's driving a car that can do some real damage

75

Seriously guys, you've seen Lewis control charging Nico .3s back. You think Lewis would have pissed away 10s? I say Nico would have gotten 7 of those 10 back at best thanks to tire. Let's at least be honest about that one.

76

That's rubbish, there was plenty of exciting racing long before the safety car and you know it.

77

Agree. There are a still a few people who were enjoying the attention they were getting from making negative comments that they just can't give it, even after a race like that.

78

Beside Daniel, he's right. The show spiced up big time after SC. Before that Lewis had a 10s cushion that was as comfy as the one he takes his pre tea time nap on.

79

it's not redbull's fault. their drivers just weren't as good as the mercedes drivers.

both the mercedes drivers are gp2 rookie champions. the only other gp2 rookie champion is hulkinberg but he is not in the same league as the mercedes duo.

now those who don't understand why hamilton is the best f1 driver to have stepped foot in the sport will begin to understand as the evidence unfolds.

80

Let's all be adults please and have a normal discussion.

Respect all drivers, don't bore us with your personal favourite.

It's getting old.

81

This +1000

82

Really? You are kidding right?

Button drives a dominant car for 6-7 races and gets nothing but flak about winning his WDC in a dominant car.

Vettel wins most of his 4 WDC's in a dominant car and he get's a lot of stick about it.

Hamilton is now driving THE MOST DOMINANT car in recent memory (we're talking MP4/4 dominance here) and you proclaim that it proves he's the best ever?

MY GOD!

83

"It was hard for Brawn to challenge at the back half of the season cause they had no budget."

They scored more points in the second half of the season than anyone except Red Bull and Barrichello won two races during that period; Button just collapsed, and was pretty lucky that Red Bull and Vettel didn't take advantage. Having said that, this was back in 10 points for a win, 8 for second; under today's points system he'd have wrapped up the title earlier.

On the flip side, Button got more out of the Brawn than he's given credit for in the races he won, like nailing key overtakes in the early stages, putting in good last ditch qualifying laps, and not making the mistakes that Barrichello did.

84

i think you are a few of those suffering from a genetic defect called antihamiltonism.

how could you possibly compare this race to any of those won by red bull or brawn? hamilton didn't dominate the race. if you are not aware, rosberg was faster than him and he still won. can you use your intelligence to explain how he did it?

85
unF1nnished business

In F1 you're only as great as your car.

86

bob +10000000000000000000

unfortunately some people have short memory and change their mind very easily.

last year hamilton was nearly overshadowed by rosberg, according to some people, while even a wall knows that mercedes n1 driver is hamilton and that mercedes last year wasn't a perfect car.

now, with a car in which even fisichella and barrichello could have won a wdc, we talk about best driver, while for button and vettel it was just the car.

best car would be a better definition(with a good driver), for almost 90% of wdc winners. sad but true. drivers count for 10/20%, not more.

put perez, hulkenberg, grosjean, bottas, massa in such a car and they would all be wdc champions because like it or not, the differences between the top 10 drivers aren't so huge as some journals want us to believe.

87

Nailed it right there. Only fanboys get a kick out of seeing their "hero" winning in a dominant car.

One team having an huge advantage has never been good for F1, whoever you support.

We saw a fantastic race yesterday with great drives from many drivers, but let's face it, we watched 2 races yesterday. Merc and the best of the rest. Both great races in their own right, but we need one race not two.

For me it devalues Hammy's win somehow, as does winning in a HYBRID

88

Are you kidding ME? Hamilton has proven himself by beating two world champions as teammates and shown us supreme overtaking and defending skills throughout his career. Haven't any of you noticed anything different between this year the past three? Now that the tyres are durable again Lewis can show his full potential - the tyres were holding him back after all and helped bunch up the grid. Peoples judgement on drivers has been clouded by schizophrenic tyres and warped the grid up. Thankfully the drivers have more control over the races now and we're seeing the true colours of some.

89

First of all chill. Second of all, JB and SV have had a number of questions pointed at them for their ability to perform when they haven't got A) the right car, or B) the right setup.

Can you tell me a race where Lewis hasn't put the car a place or 3 further than it should be? He has had his ups and downs, but what you are seeing is what people have been talking about for years, if you take Vettel out of the dominant car he gets lost in the pack, you take JB out of the dominant car he is a good driver but puts the car exactly where it deserves to be.

You put Hamilton in a dominant car with a great team mate who is quicker, on better tyres and with no fuel saving he puts the car past the chequered flag 1st.

90

"aveli Reply:

April 6th, 2014 at 11:48 pm

the evidence is overwhelming!"

Can you please present some? He is very good, one of the best but greatest of all time?

91

A few things...

First of all, it was a great race and a great drive by Hamilton - no doubt. But as far as I'm concerned his win was more to do with Rosberg's poor race craft than Hamilton's amazing driving.

I mean c'mon! He tried to go around the outside of turn 4 FOUR times! I can't help but think that any of the other top drivers would have got Hamilton.

Second of all, @j and @L.B - really? Button and Vettel had no challenge from their team mate?

Barrichello - 11 wins, 68 podiums, 14 pole positions and 17 fastest laps

Webber - 9 wins, 42 podiums, 13 pole positions and 19 fastest laps

Rosberg - 4 wins, 14 podiums, 5 pole positions and 6 fastest laps.

So to make Hamilton look better, you declare that of the above drivers, Rosberg is the biggest challenge and the other two were easy? Give me a break!

@grat

It was hard for Brawn to challenge at the back half of the season cause they had no budget.

Second of all, the MP4/24 that Hamilton won in was NOT a dog of a car. The one he was driving for the first half of the season was, hence his results in the races preceding his win, but the one he won in was a new car altogether.

Are you honestly going to tell me that the car he drove to 12th, 13th, 16th, 18th in rounds 6, 7, 8 & 9 was really the same car he won in during round 10? I guess his amazing brilliance just went missing for the first 9 races of the season.

I really wish Hamilton fans could have some sort of balanced view for a change!

The CONSTANT belittlement of his rivals and the constant bigging up of Hamilton regardless of how good or bad he does is really getting tiresome.

Hamilton is a great driver, no doubt, but he isn't a great as you all make him out to be and his rivals aren't as bad as you make them out to be.

92

What proves Hamilton is one of the best drivers ever is what he did to Rosberg. Supreme driving ability!

93

Relax Bob, take a chill pill. Just enjoy the racing for what it is at the moment and dont get caught up in the whole 'best driver ever' argument because its getting a little old now.

94

What was great is the PAIR of them. ROS and HAM. Their knowledge of each other's styles, placing, and where they will fight each other.

It's the same thing MSC and HAK had.

The PAIR of them will make the races great.

95

At least it is "MP4/4" dominance also in the sense that there are two great drivers free to fight. It could be worse - something like 2002 or 2004. I'd rather have a repeat of 88 then a dominant team with a strict #1/#2 hierarchy any day of the week. If Red Bull gets a lot of flak at the moment, it's their own fault. Webber was doing better than Vettel in 2010 and then they decided to "put him on his place". If they let them fight on equal terms, they could have lost that WDC to Alonso, they could see Webber get the title, but in any case they would be still be considered a "cool" team, which is the image they had when they entered the sport. Mark my words, if Mercedes let the drivers fight as they did today, there's no way people will hate them as they now hate Red Bull even if they are this dominant the whole season.

96

Button got flack for not being able to defend the second half of the season-- it was apparent that once his car was no longer the absolute fastest, he had difficulty winning. In contrast, Hamilton won two races with the MP4-24, which was a dog of a car.

My problem with Vettel is that he constantly made rookie mistakes on his way to at least two of those titles. To be fair, last year he drove much better than he had previously, but hasn't (yet) shown the kind of racecraft that Lewis Hamilton displayed in Bahrain from laps 52-57.

Hamilton was consistently one move ahead of Rosberg-- Any time Rosberg was about to overtake, Hamilton would take the line that would allow a re-overtake.

97

Button and Vettel had no real challenge from their team mates.

98

There is a small difference. Look at their teammates.

99

the evidence is overwhelming! you can cry all you like but hamilton is the best f1 driver ever to step foot in the sport. you better start appreciating it because you may never see another driver as good in your life time.

100

No, it was nothing to do with driving the most dominant car, it was the way Lewis held onto that lead against Nico when Nico was on the softer tyre. Those two have raced against each other for more than half their lives and they know each other's every move. When Hamilton is overtaken it's like he moves up a gear.

One of the best races I've ever seen. What a battle! What a season!

101

Its the racing betwen the Mercedes that hes wining so far is the *point* - maybe you missed that bit.. to hold off a faster car for 10 laps with race thinking up to that of the greats shows something special.

102

You did watch his battle with Nico, right? It was fantastic racing. No one doubts vettel and his talent but I think we can all admit he had it pretty easy over the years.

103

Wow, a rare voice of reason on this site 🙂

Well said Sir.

104

Couldn't agree more, bob.

Not a huge fan of Hamilton but still I consider him in my top 3 and it has always been a joy to see him racing (except for the silly "Cranes 'R' us" season).

But I haven't been enjoying him this season.

For instance, today for at least 3 occasions he didn't leave enough track space for his team mate, forcing him off track (opposite to the regulations!).

And he's been acting strange on press conferences. As if they changed his brain.

Kinda weird but this seems a different Hamilton but for worst 🙁

105

Great race, very enjoyable but I'm a little concerned about the huge gap between Merc and the other teams. Doesn't bode well for the rest of the season for those of us who enjoy close competition. Merc are enjoying a far bigger advantage then Red Bull ever did and it will be a major embarrassment for Hamilton if he doesn't take this Championship with only Rosberg in his way.

106

"they have given us more entertainment in a single race than redbull ever did In their 4 dominant years"

Such a justified statement Aveli....Merc have earnt so much respect from the F1 fans for allowing both guys to race, providing such a beautiful racing spectacle for the true racers out there.

Wonder if Ross Brawn would of approved of this policy?

107

Look at it this way... You get two races... one up front between the two Ferrari... er.. Mercedes drivers, and then the battle for the rest of the field.

Actually, the rest of the field appears pretty close to each other, Mercedes engine or not. Ferrari is lamenting their pace, and it's obvious their car has a problem, but they're not very far behind Red Bull, who isn't that far behind the Mercedes powered cars.

At the moment, the silver arrows are where the Brawn GP01 was-- about a full year ahead on the development curve.

108

are you sure about that? red bull won for 4 years and their champion driver won 9 races in a row last year, 13 in total on a single season. mercedes has only won 3 races between their drivers. let them win for 4 years before we start complaining.

with their speed advantage, they have given us more entertainment in a single race than redbull ever did I their 4 dominant years.

ferrari and renault engineers fell asleep when they were asked to design the new engines. mercedes put the air compressor of their turbo as far away from the exhaust manifold and as close to the inlet manifold as possible. a simple idea. am not an engineer but I remember posting this idea on the old bbc forum and anti hamilton fans posted their usual rubbish.

109

I happen to agree that HAM/ALO are the best drivers in F1 by a margin but.... It does not matter who you put in that rbr right now they would not catch the merc, the engine just isn't up to it. Personally I reckon RBR have done a great job with the car but they cannot compensate for the stunning job merc has done with the engine.

110

We'll said BoogWar....

111

Merc has other customers with the same engine. I think there is a bit more to the W05 than just superior power. 24 seconds in 10 laps? TWO POINT FOUR SECONDS PER LAP? Jeezalou!

112
Tornillo Amarillo

The song says>

Clap along if you know what happiness is to you

Because I’m HAMMY!!!

113

Clap along if you feel like Hammyness is the TRUTH....... 😀

114

Wonder who will be DOTD second week in a row. Ali G "Hamilton Army in Da House. Big up yourself."

115

We should remember one thing, if Hamiltons car had not broken down in the first race, he would have won all three races and be way ahead of everyone else including Rosberg.

Lets hope Hamilton doesn't suffer any mor "reliability " issues".

116

Stick to the racing Sebee

Stereotyping is poor form from you.

117
Tornillo Amarillo

Dad Anthony Hamilton should be proud.

118

This race might shake Rosberg's confidence. He was on the option tire and still lost. This will definitely give him something to think about. I think I heard a radio transmission by Redbull that said "Sebastian, Daniel is faster than u get can u get out the way" lol

119

Oh, I think Rosberg’s confidence is just fine. Late in the race, their boss instructed both drivers not to crash into one another. Rosberg took that to mean, "OK, I'll make sure not to so something stupid and hit my teammate". But Hamilton took it to mean" OK, the responsibility to avoid a crash lies entirely with Rosberg no matter what I do including running him off the track. I can do anything I want and Rosberg will have to back off and give me room."

I think Rosberg knows he could have beaten Hamilton had Hammy heeded the team instructions and shown the same respect for the team, the team orders, and his fellow teammate that Rosberg did. I suspect things may be different next time. Rosberg is no Massa.

120

VasEline said it - Rosberg needs to be tougher if he wants to win. Hamilton will drive a guy off the track if he has too to get his position. He'll play chicken longer, because he believes that the other guy will yield. Rosberg did it over and over again yesterday...2 wide in the corner...and Rosberg was the one backed off. Neither guy might yield, and there might be a collision. But until Rosberg proves to Hamilton that he is willing to risk that for a position, he wont the races on track. He would have to hope for better luck to win the races (and championship).

121

Brownie points dont count towards a world championship. Vettel was ruthless, 'even all smiles' Jenson Button was ruthless to his team mate when he took the crown. Rosberg needs to be more ruthless on track. F1 isnt kind to on track nice guys, with at least 0.3s/lap advantage and an ambiguous team order you're saying he chose to respectfully give up 7 points? In for a penny, in for a pound.

122

I kind of agree that Hamilton was quite aggressive with Rosberg, running him to the outside of the track on several occasions. However, this used to be what we called racing before this era of complaining to Charlie every time a driver is passed outside of a DRS zone.

I think it was great defensive racing from Hamilton and Rosberg might just be kicking himself that he didn't get past.

I'd speculate that if it had've been Vettel or Alonso (or Hamilton for that matter) in the trailing Mercedes, they would have made a move stick and won the GP.

Rosberg should have plenty of opportunities to show that he does have the killer instinct this season, but the opening exchanges have undoubtedly gone in Hamilton's favour.

123

Can't disagree with you more! Firstly, neither driver ever touched the other....

Secondly, it all depends where both battling cars are placed on the track. If the nose of one car is well positioned, alongside, and down the inside, in a corner's braking zone, the car outside has to give room, even if the driver arrived in said area, first! That is known as being out-braked...

Don't give room and turn-in--you have Bianchi/Sutil'sw accident.

Lewis never closed the door on Nico in corner braking. He simply moved wide left, and took advantage of Rosberg's deep corner entry. This allowed Hamilton to slip behind his Teammate and gain better traction, a much quicker exit and line to set up the next sequence of corners.

Meanwhile, any attempt to pass a car on the outside is done at a driver's own risk if the inside car has the proper race line and corner exit.... That's how it works! Lewis never put Nico off into the dirt. Once Nico had to move over onto the corner exit tarmac run-off because Lewis had the proper inside corner exit line. But is not the same as putting another driver into the weeds!

In the end, neither driver complained about their Teammate's tactics--and rightly so! Earlier, Rosberg's made a comment over the radio about Lewis' first move after Nico began his attack for the race lead.

However, from my view, that complaint was due to shock at how quickly Hamilton fought back, just a reaction, from Nico, really. No doubt, seconds afterwards Rosberg realized that Lewis wasn't going to surrender victory, by any amount, easily. Following that, Nico got down to business and put up a great fight, in his own right!

What those two super competitors did was, simply, to inject much needed excitement into the new F1 season and formula by carrying on their old Karting rivalry, from the distant past, with 800+ horsepower at their disposal. Superb wheel to wheel racing--the best in decades!

124

Are you mental? That was clean and fair racing to the end and only the most blinkered person couldn't see that.

Cheesy as it is to say Formula 1 is the winner with this one, The fans are winners and what a showcase for the new formula. I love the fact that Mercedes when they pushed each other actually showed the rest of the field what they could really do, and I still think they have some in hand as well....about time RB dominance was questioned, they will catch up but a hungry RB means good battles to come.

125
Bring back V12's !!!

@Roberto - I take it you are one of those people who just despise Lewis no matter what he does? You can't even congratulate him on a stunning defensive performance/win? Reminded me a little of that footage of Ayrton holding off Mansel in the Monaco GP many years ago. Lewis is a fantastic race driver but some people will just choose to discredit him no matter the circumstances.

126

It seems highly likely one of the two Mercedes drivers is going to end up as world champion. They both know it, which is why I think we can see them racing so hard. We never saw how far Rosberg was willing to push Hamilton. I'll reserve judgement until we've seen Hamilton coming from behind and trying to overtake Rosberg.

127

Yep. I thought the same thing. I prefer Hamilton and he is a nice guy but Rosberg went up a level in terms of respectability after this race and also Malaysia 2013. I think when Button retires and if he stays true to his personality and morals in his battles with Lewis this season he will be the most respected driver on the grid. Lets just hope they both battle it out fairly for the WC.

128

Without the safety car and the different tire strategy he wouldn't have come close. Hamilton had a 10 second gap before the safety car. This race was practically over.

129

+1 oh the joy!

130
kenneth chapman

like you elie, a joy to behold.

131

Oh yes! Thank goodness the Pirelli WWE nonsense has been removed from the sport. We got real racing up and down the field.

I was on the edge of my seat through out! That is easily the best F1 race I have ever witnessed. Brilliant!

Lewis has shown once again that he has more in the toolbox than Nico, 10 times he overtook Nico and 10 times, he made it stick. 9 times Nico attempted to pass Lewis and 9 times, he failed.

As for Vettel, it just seems to be whinge season. Not much more to add there. It could turn out that Bernie's unimaginative, artificial "spice it up" nonsense only gave us tainted championships in the last few years.

132
H.Guderian (ALO fan)

+1.000

Without cheat mode (in one car only), things are A LOT harder, huh???

133

Yes, he did. Just think what he would've done without the 10 place grid penalty. I also want to know does Redbull still think they're catching up to Mercedes? I think not. Mercedes are not showing there hand. I believe they have a lot of pace in hand. After the Safety car they still beat the field by 24 seconds. The rest of the grid have a long way to go.

134

+1

The nature of RIC and VET is interesting.

RIC on VETs rear, "we need to do something about this".

VET on WEBs rear, "get him out of the way".

If RIC does beat VET this season and this is still a big if, VET will have nightmares about that big white smile. Much like the rest of us with that finger 🙂

135

Agreed. Not only what he said, but also thw way he said it that impressed me.

Calm, authoritative. diplomatic. In complete contrast to the rantings of Mr one finger.

Looks like we've got another top bloke from down under!

Not a Red Bull fan, far from it, and not an Aussie. But like Mark Webber before him, Danny Boy gets my support from now on.

136

+1

137

I'm amazed by RIC performance against VET as well.

Looks like this guy may have been very underrated whilst at TR.

138

Sebastian.........Your team mate is better than you! 🙂 looks like Mclaren ditched the wrong driver too!

139

Says a lot that seb moved over...good to see him putting team first after stuff like multi 21 gate last yr

140
kenneth chapman

hahaha did vettel really have any option? ricci was all over him like the proverbial rash.

interesting to note that as soon as ricci blew him away he came on the radio stating that he was slow at the end of the straight!!

but he still fought competetively until he realised that ricci was just too fast for him.

142

The trouble with Checo has never been his speed and ability. The trouble has always been that he is completely schizophrenic from one race to the next. When he is on his day, he is bloody quick and puts in a top level performance. When he is not, he runs into everything in site. If he can pull off these kinds of performances consistently this year, especially as he is being measured against Hulkenberg, he will do himself some very big favors.

143

Well said.

Pastor also springs to mind - victory in Spain 2012, superb drive. What he has done since?

Measured consistency is the key.

144

Sebastian team radio ' get me out of the way, I am too slow' .

145

It was funny to see Seb's excuse everytime Riccardo passes him, for ex., DRS is not working. But, I did see it work on his car later in the race.

146

And I did also see it open briefly at the start of one of the straights and then close again long before it should have. Maybe it was sorted out later on, but it definitely was a problem.

147

Yea. And gears not working too. The guy is being out classed by his team mate. Am glad I don't have to see that stupid finger he used to bring out to say he is number one.

148

Good one lol!

149

I think he handled that with incredible maturity and team spirit. He complied without whining and even told them where it would happen to avoid any issues.

The question is did he do that to save face (because he was going to get passed anyway) or did he do it for all the right reasons?

150

I agree, first likeable thing I've seen from Vettel for a long time.

151

I think he did it for the right reasons. He and Ricciardo were on different strategies, and there was no reason to hold up his teammate.

152

With all the respect to the man, he complied and even told them where he's going to let him pass.

153

why do the redbull drivers have to ask for permission to pass their teammate? have they not learned from paddy lowe?

155

It looks like? Everybody knew they screwed up when they let Lewis go. Button isn't even in the conversation when it comes to the best drivers in F1.

156

I thought Lewis was at his best today..but Button was showing well until his clutch issue...possible 3rd on the cards. To write JB off is to downplay Lewis's skill..they are both top level drivers just like Alonso and Kimi...I'm still not convinced by Seb..he doesn't seem to enjoy the close competition like Lewis and Jenson do!

157

So would I...I knoiw that JB would be up for it...mmm...not so sure about Seb though?! 🙂

158

now i'd love to see vettel and button in the same team.

159

Michael, is Button not a WDC on your planet?

160

He was referring to Perez, not Lewis...I think!

161

He is referring to Perez. Button was never in the elite drivers club anyway.(and never will be)

162

Gaz Boy, I'm very relieved to hear that you think I'm entitled to my opinion, that means ever so much to me.....

It's interesting that you should only pick up on a minor detail in my post and one that is neither definitively quantifiable or indeed at all paramount to my overall argument. From your total silence on any of my key points, can one assume you are in reluctant agreement?

Whether Kimi had been at the very top of his game in 2008 is neither here nor there, and whether he went on to have a good 2009 is totally irrelevant seeing as we are talking about the state of F1 at the end of 2008, in the context of whether Button had done enough at that point to be considered a top driver, and one who would have, in a normal situation, likely found himself in a dominant car.

Kimi at the end of 2008 still had the number 1 on his car, having won the World Championship in a very good Ferrari just a year earlier. He had been brought in to lead the dominant team of the era to replace the dominant driver of the era because he was considered one of the very best and probably the outright fastest driver in the field at the time.

With that in mind, I stand by my statement that as of the end of 2008, the best drivers in the sport were considered to be 2005 & 2006 world champion Fernando Alonso, 2007 World champion Kimi Raikkonen and 2008 world champion Lewis Hamilton.

Outside of those you also had Felipe Massa who, as you rightly pointed out, had just come off a very impressive 2008, totally justifying his position in a top team, as well as the in-from drivers of the moment who might also have reasonably expected to be drafted in to a traditional top team, notably Robert Kubica and Sebastian Vettel.

That then adds up to there being AT LEAST 6 drivers who at the end of 2008 would have been considered of a higher caliber than Jenson Button, who had just come off a season where he had been beaten again by his teammate; the old man, number two, Barrichello.

Thanks to fortuitous circumstances then, Jenson flukes his way in to the dominant car of 2009 and has an easy shot at the world title that his talent under normal circumstances would never have afforded. That is why he is probably the least deserving world champion in history and why in a recent list of the top 50 drivers in F1 history, he didn't even make the list.

163

@ Gaz Boy do you honestly believe a driver thats a WC in 2007 and rated by the greats as the fastest driver on the planet in. All of a sudden becomes nobody in 2008. Do you also think Felipe was the same driver in 2008 that he is now.... Really think about it mate..

164

RE Red 5: You're entitled to your opinion. However, in 2008 Kimi was one of the top 3 drivers in F1?????? Are you sure about that??? Comprehensively smashed in the gonads all season long by that chap called Felipe who oh so nearly won the 2008 WDC! In 2008 and 2009, Autocourse rated Kimi as 9th for both seasons. And even they were being generous. And at the end of 2009 Ferrari said, Kimi, on yer way son...........I may be wrong, but to claim Kimi's performances in 2008 and 2009 were worthy of a Top 3 rating is extremely myopic.

Apar

165

those of you who don't understand the value of button hear me out. after button's first race schumacher looked him up and down while they waited to be weighed. he must'do seen something special in button. two teams fought over button's services, a legal battle. he is 34 and has managed 250 races and still able to beat his younger teammates with ease except hamilton. he is a champion and a good one for that matter. stop the hate and see the facts as they are.

166

Button fans are some of the most delusional fans ever.

Yes he did win a WDC with not only the best car but the car that was over 1 sec faster.

No champion in the past 20 years got beat by guys who never won WDC like Fisichella and Rubens, it's a fact.

If you are a team principal, you would trade Button for Lewis, Alonso or Vettel.

Don't get me wrong he is a very good driver, just not a world class driver. There's no reason to hate the guy.

167

@ Red 5

Excellent post, absolutely on the money in my opinion.

168

Ok, time for some home truths on the Button front.

I have been watching the sport for a quarter of a century and Button is without doubt the weakest driver to pick up a World Championship in that time, and one of the weakest ever. The other driver who comes close on that front is Damon Hill, but you could at least claim that Hill was a very decent qualifier. Damon also has the humility to admit that he wasn't in the top tier.

Jenson Button only even had a shot at the title by dint of having the dominant car of the season, and the only car to benefit from the blown diffuser. He also benefited from having a very ordinary team mate to contend with in Barrichello, who was only ever a good number two. Even during his prime with Ferrari, he rarely ever had the upper hand over Schumacher, and by 2009 was way clearly past his prime. And yet old man Rubens managed to push Button all the way to that year's title.

Now as for those who rightly claim that few if any drivers ever win the title unless they are driving the best car, or at least one of the best cars, that is quite right. However in the normal scheme of things the best drivers tend to find themselves in the best cars precisely because they are the best drivers. Senna and Prost didn't find themselves in dominant Mclarens by fluke, neither did Mansell at Williams or Schumacher at Ferrari. That wasn't the case though with Button in 2009.

At the end of 2008 the best drivers in the sport were Lewis Hamilton, Fernando Alonso and Kimi Raikkonen and these were the drivers rightfully in demand and in place in the top teams. Button by comparison was staring forced retirement in the face as his Honda team had decided to pull out of Formula One, and no other team were particularly interested in hiring him. His immediate future was saved by the fact Ross Brawn, keen to utilize the loophole he had found in the regulations decided to lead a management buyout of the team and ask Button to stay without a salary. With no other options, he agreed, the blown diffuser was a huge advantage, and the rest as they say is history. Button therefore found himself in the dominant car that year, not because he had earned his place through being one of the top drivers, as is usually the case, but by fortuitous circumstance.

Burton's lack of true class has only been further borne out in the years subsequent to 2009. At Mclaren he was comprehensibly out performed by first Hamilton and even by Perez last year. The only occasions in which he has been able to win races with the team have come when the weather has been changeable and he has been able to roll the dice on tyre choice.

If any further proof were needed of Button's lack of world class, it comes in his current situation. Button now finds himself in a Mclaren team that is clearly no longer one of the sport's top teams. Meanwhile Hamilton finds himself sitting pretty in the Dominant works Mercedes; fluke? No. It has been clear for some time that Mercedes were a team on the up, and a team who were clearly going to be one of the leaders when it came to the new formula. Hamilton is merely following the usual path; finding himself where the best drivers usually find themselves; in the best car.

169

Jeez if Button is so bad are there even any words that describe most of you guys? It's like tribal wars or something, why can't people just enjoy it without having to whinge about some driver, team or technical regulation.

170

"...Button was never in the elite drivers club anyway.(and never will be)..."

Yes, cause they hand out WDC's to every Tom, Dick and Harry!

And don't even THINK about spouting that rubbish about him having the worlds most dominant car! Assuming Rosberg or Hamilton goes on to win the WDC this year (I can't see it not happening) then Button will have won his WDC in the least dominant car of the last 3 World Champions - FACT.

171

Jenson is a good driver. He may not be as fast over 1 lap as he top 2 or 3 guys, but he can race if he's happy with his car.

Great driving from Perez though today. I think the Hulk v Perez battle will be a good one and like the Hulk will be pretty miffed at Perez getting on the podium before him.

172

Don't get me wrong guys. Button is an excellent driver. He is just not as good as Senna,Prost,Schumacher,Alonso,Vettel,Hamilton,Lauda,Mansell just to name a few. These guys have that extra what makes them elite.

What a beautiful race...will watch again many times.

173

Hmmmmm race wins and a WDC title puts him there no matter what you think. Not many people actually have one of either.

174

Oh please too funny Button is a Vettel type champ ie got the exceptionally better car sit back and enjoy the ride! same idea as as Ricky is clearly showing in Vettels case always said Vettel was a top 10 driver for what they are at very very best!

175

Bit harsh?

Jenson is a WDC, that's a very, very elite club!

It's like saying England have only won World Cup.........but the triumph of 1966 it still one more championship than the likes of Holland, Denmark, Sweden and Hungary - no disrespect to those countries intended, but they all fell at the final hurdle.

Jenson, on the other hand, did achieve world championship status, so his name is etched in F1 history for as long as there is F1 - as a champion. Like Bobby Moore and co in 1966................

176

At least Button destroyed his team mate this weekend. The mclaren simply wasn't in the league of the force India this time - if anyone think that shows Perez is better than button or magnussen they don't understand the basics and probably shouldn't be using a computer unsupervised...

177

@ Mike Martin thanks for looking out. It seems like they made the wrong choice in both cases. It's really sad. Mclaren is becoming the next Williams.

178
Alexander Supertramp

I think he was referring to Perez.

179

I think he meant Perez., Hamilton chose to leave.

180

It looks now like Lewis was a profit. He knew a sinking ship when he saw one. lol

181

button is a champion.

182

@bob. Hamilton did break down a lot more when leading though. And he had a lot more poles

183

"...Ok, whatever u say. lol..."

Ummm, no, it's not whatever he says, it's fact. Look it up.

And I believe the original poster was referring to Perez.

People like you make me laugh. 3 years he was Hamilton's team mate and in 3 years he scored only 2 wins less than Hamilton, but more points and more podiums.

Not even in the conversation? Keep dreaming pal!

184

Ok, whatever u say. lol

185

Driver of the day lewis! Best race in years.

186

I think Hamilton should buy Rosberg a beer after that one - after all, Rosberg gifted him the race!

INSIDE of turn 4 Nico - INSIDE!!!

187

bob, re-watch lap 53 please. Rosberg tried to take the inside line going through Turn 4. Hamilton knew it, and kept tight to the apex through there. Rosberg tried a few different attacks, but Hamilton read his book each time.

If you're too young for the reference, here's a clip (amazing actor; amazing film):

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ssfrVOaBA8A

188

Gifted? You must have been watching a different race just 99% of us.

Congratulations - you're in the one percent.

189

Perhaps leave him your number on his website. I'm sure he never thought about going up the inside. 😉

190

yes hamilton is that good! So good that you don't understand how he does it and yet refuse to admit that he is as good as he is. another genetic disorder?

191

red bull and williams should stop interfering with the racing and allow the drivers to race like paddy lowe does.

192

And a BITTER for Bob I reckon. LOL

193

@Truth

One of the wittiest comments I have seen for a long time. Made me laugh out loud 🙂

194

Haha, maybe he's had one too many BITTERs.

195

or a saucer of milk!

196

Yes, indeed! What an amazing race, and not just between the two Merc drivers. Perez-Hulk, Vettel-Ricciardo, Massa-Bottas ... multiple examples of teammates going wheel-to-wheel!

I was cursing the bonehead Maldonado for causing the late safety car, thinking at the time that it had robbed us of a great finish to the strategic battle then unfolding between Hamilton on the softs and Rosberg on the mediums. I was certain that with them each having to swap to the other compound, that Rosberg would be able to easily get by on the faster options, with the SC having erased Lewis' 9.5 sec lead. What I didn't account for (or rather, didn't account for enough) was Hamilton's tenacity and sheer determination to win that bloody race! Absolutely AMAZING.

197

The whole top 10 were drivers of the day. An amazing class of drivers, worth getting up to watch at 1am in Oz. But for me, Dan really proved he's the real deal to the F1 world. Although a lot of us already knew that. I just wish Brian Johnston had of hit a high note and belted out Thunderstruck during the podium.

Maldonado is a madman, I've said it before. He's going to get someone really hurt one day and they need to get rid of him despite his money coming to teams. Way too much red mist when he sees someone in front of him. It's moronic intimidation tactics that are supposed to make the other guy think twice the next time they race. Cheap club go karting stuff that no one respects. They should sit him down and make him watch that race to show him how real drivers with brains are supposed to race.

198

Ricciardo definitely had a great race, very happy to see him bag his first points. He's been horribly done by, in the first two races.

Yeah, having celebs like Johnson, and Benedict Cumberbatch last race, for the podium, is quite the incentive. I bet the drivers got an autograph. I certainly would if I was as close to such a rock icon.

199

+1000000

Lewis was pure world class today, best way to answer all the critics is with drives like that, awesome drive

200

@lance manion, why are you telling me what to do? are you in pain? is that how you cry? vettel is a very good driver but people can see through it all. redbull gave adrien newey shares in order for him to design them a fast car which doesn't break down. mclaren refused to give him shares when he asked and he designed them a fast car which broke down at every opportunity.

vettel was never paid much money by red bull. why do you think that is? hamilton on the other hand is paid a lot more? why is that?

this is how hamilton started his race on pole, stayed ahead http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3MeTHySzddYand won.

201

6 years after winning a championship and not winning another, most drivers fade away like villenurve. not the best driver to have stepped foot in the sport. 44 just steps it up another level.

202

Give it a rest Aveli. Hamilton has the best car on the grid. He's always been fast. I just hope to see the same people who gave no credit to Vettel the last 4 years and all credit to the car do the same here with Hamilton if he cruises to an easy WDC. This Mercedes looks as good as any car Vettel has driven.

204

I would think that the best F1 driver ever to have stepped into the sport would not need 6 years... 🙂

205

That was one of the best races I've ever seen - an absolute classic.

I really hope this shuts up all the naysayers. This is shaping up to be one of the best ever seasons.

206

great race if you like watching team-mates battling - not so much if you like close racing. Teams lined-up neatly without the safety car, too unevenly matched to fight each other...

207
Tornillo Amarillo

So Safety Car should be mandatory... Just thinking.

208

Like NASCAR. There is a candy wrapper on the track, bring out the SC. While their at it they should then hose down the field and put everyone onto intermediates. LOL

209

Ssshh. Don't give them ideas!

210
Tornillo Amarillo

Well, tire change and tire-compound change are already mandatory, why not...

211

don't say it too loud, otherwise certain Mr. Ecc...

212
Matthew Cheshire

Bernie is probably drawing it up now. But it would have sprinklers on the back, a PA with V12 engine noise and Danica Patrick driving in a bikini.

213

A race like that, after LdM's Taxi Driver comment...

Brilliant!

214

So true! LdM should focus on making a faster taxi

215
David in Sydney

I think Luca was actually referring to the F14T driving like a taxi...

216

The racing is mostly between teammates. Just look at the positions after the safety car: Teammates next to each other, because the car is a much bigger component this year than in the past.

217

This particular track (power track), and others like Monza, Mexico in the old days, bring out the cars differences, but I also think this year team mates are more even than in previous years, and pit walls are letting them race, at least for the time beign

Should make for a fun season throughout the field

218

LDM will do well to keep quiet for a week or so. RBR should spend more time singing Rics praises and apologizing for costing him valuable points in the first 2races.

Well managed merc. That's a way better way to win fans and increase viewing figures than RBRs approach.

219

Just FYI, before you start giving the new formula credit for this exciting finish,  it should be noted that it was really thanks to the safety car and we have seen this before many times.  goferet can tell you how many times if needed.  Lewis was 10s ahead and was going to control this till the end like a game of Ms. Pac Man until SC came out.  What took so long for the SC by thr way?  Was Bert pinching a duce?  

This MB is a 2s per lap faster space ship.  They opened up 20s to P3 in 10 laps!   

Remember boys and girls, it's not Lewis or Nico who's winning this year.  It's they boys in the engine shop! :-p.  

220

Sebee, sssssssst.

221

Twas a great race before the safety car!

The merc end dual was just the icing on an already delicious cake! 🙂

222

if it rained you'd have said is the rain, if there was a sand storm you'd have said it was the sand storm. it was a race and it is normal for the safety car to be deployed for a damaged car to be removed from the track following a crash. rosberg and hamilton drove the cars. so did ricciardo, perez, vettel,hulkinberg, massa, bottas and co.

the drivers did their job in an exciting manner not the safety car. did you hear how hamilton whipped up the crowed into a frenzy?

223

Agree, opened up a 20 second gap in 10 laps. FIA need to bring them back to the field some how.

224

Should RBR be made to hand back their last 9 wins from 2013, as Merc and the others stopped developing and moved their resources to their 2014 cars?

These regulations were initially supposed to come in for the 2013 season, so perhaps they should hand back all 13 wins from last year?

Merc prepared for 2014, and clearly prepared better than most. Arbitrarily punishing them for foregoing late-2013 to reap rewards in 2014 would be more than a little unfair, no?

225

Good point.

226

Why?! They've done a better job than the others

227

Not exactly objective from you this time around Mr Sebee. Split tyre strategies in the second stint meant that the racing between the two was going to be interesting at the end, even without the safety car as Rosberg was going to use the faster softs against Lewis' slower mediums.

228

10s gap? Come on...

229

Even prior to the safety car it was still a decent race. Crashtor helped make it a classic.

230

Did you not watch the first part of the race then. The team mate battles at FI Williams ferrari and Red Bull. .Some people cannot like anything.

231

Did anybody else hear Massa get on the radio to his team complaining that Botass' (who was in front of him) tires were finished... basically asking the team to move Bottas out the way? Did nobody else see the hypocrisy in that message after the events of Malaysia??

232

I noticed that, Felipe really shot himself in the foot in Malaysia didn't he? Obviously it would have been the right thing to do to let Massa through at that point but why would the team risk upsetting Valterri? No point asking him anyway, clearly there is no way Bottas would have let him through.

233

lol. when it was Vettel running away with it, it wasn't just the car! now someone else is doing it and it is the "engine shop"!

234

There were still plenty of battles to watch out for without the safety car though, as some teams tried 2 stops and some tried 3. The battle for 3rd was fantastic as both Force India and Williams showed pace and the fight for the win would have gone on until the end.

235
My Dad's Harder Than Yours

It's incredibly embarrassing to see how Ferrari and Red Bull are whining about the rules in an effort to corrupt the competition, just because Mercedes have comprehensively beaten them in the engineering battle. Glad today's race was such a cracker and glad to see Mercedes allowing their drivers to race from lights to flag, very refreshing.

236

Imagine if they had taken each other out? Or could that happen in the near future? In only takes a locked front wheel from the car behind running closely to his team-mate and..............

237

Then they would have shrugged, still led both championships comfortably and won the next 16 races.

238
Tornillo Amarillo

It's not Lewis? But Lewis beat ROSBERG in inferior tires.

But sure Vettel was number 1 before so yes, it was Newey in that case.

239
David in Sydney

They were not inferior tyres - the team itself told Rosberg that the speed differential between the two tyres was not what they had thought (i.e. the softer tyres were not faster).

Hamilton had another masterful race and Rosberg was behind. Still leading the Championship but for how long..?

240
Tornillo Amarillo

Well if it was not what they had thought, maybe it WERE faster but not that faster (i.e. 0,6 seconds faster)... Who knows how faster, but it seems they were faster anyway...

241

The stupid rule that allows lapped drivers un-lap themselves.

242

As they said in the commentary, the point of the rule is so the competitors on track can race without lapped drivers in the way. Admittedly it was more of a problem in the era when overtaking was more difficult. But not many here seem to remember the racing then, when it could be really boring. One of the great fixes was DRS, and some people still whine about that.

I think it's important to remember that in F1 a safety car is exactly that, not an artificial way to spice up the racing, if it's needed it's used, props to Charlie. Some win and some lose when it's deployed, which is a shame for the losers, but F1 is safer for it.

243

yeah, it was wasn't it (I had to look up snarky), oops

244

@neilmurg, snarkiness will get you everywhere. 😉

245

KRB, oldiron, rad_g

terrific, you want a rule change, thanks for sharing.

Except it won't change this race, or any race sooo why not talk about the race instead?

246

I'm with KRB (was thinking the same after the race, oddly). Just drop the backmarkers to the back of the line - they don't even need to wait for the queue to form up for that, just let people move through to the race order position. It would be way faster than faffing around letting them drive through the queue of faster cars after waiting for the queue to form.

More radically, I was also thinking just have them pull into the pits out of the way, but thats (possibly) a bit harsh :). More seriously, if merc ever drive at full speed the whole race, it might remove a large portion of the field.

247

With the max fuel limit now (100kg/race), perhaps what they should do now instead is have all lapped cars just drop back to the back of the SC line, but now those cars would only be allowed to use (race_laps-1/race_laps)*100 kg's of fuel for their race.

Ok, they would get the benefit of one less lap of tire wear, but the fuel restriction should make sure that no lapped car benefits (anymore than any other car might with a SC). It certainly wouldn't take as long as it does now, any time the SC comes out.

248

Yeah it's makes sense to let them unlap themselves so they get out of the way but they shouldn't have to wait till they rejoin the back of the pack as it takes too long

249

Sorry for you to have missed most of the race, as you must have undoubtedly come around lap 40.

250

It was a great race even before the safety car. The first stint battle between the two Mercs was as intense as the last 10 laps.

251

it must be a genetic disorder. the evidence right in your face and you go to look for things from the dark? incident occur in races and the drivers drive accordingly. the conditions were the same for all the drivers and those who could deal with those conditions better than the rest, did.

i hoped we'd have a great race today and we certainly did!

252

Hey, look everybody....it's a Vettel fan. Quickly grab your photo camera before they get extinct.

"Riccardo is faster then you"...PRICELESS!!

254

Imagine if a Martian landed on Earth this season. I wonder if they would rate Vetell as a top driver? Just goes to prove, if proof were needed, that it was all down to the car after all.

255

@Andre

If someone speaks about an F1 driver in the matter that you do, why do you even watch it. (Sic)

If I understand you correctly, it would appear you are questioning why I watch F1 because you happen to disapprove of one of my comments. I still think your question was odd. If I had said something, like ''this new formula stinks, no racing, boring etc' then you would have a point. But I didn't say that. I made a light hearted remark implying that Vetell is not looking so impressive this season. You disagree, your entitled to your opinion but, unfortunately for you - so am I 🙂

256

My point is simple, he was on a 2 stopper unlike many around him. So the SC ruined his strategy. I'm not talking about LH.

The question is not odd.

If someone speaks about an F1 driver in the matter that you do, why do you even watch it.

A little childish isn't it?

257

SC ruined LH strategy as well. So what is your point?

As regards why I watch F1. Odd question, was it rhetorical?

258

If a "Martian" or any creature whatever, from wherever in the universe visited the planet known locally as Earth, He, she, or it would shake his, her, or it's head, or whatever it had to shake, at the behaviour of the "prime" species on the third rock, and fly away laughing. (or whatever such a person/creature/monster/nice person would do to express contempt for grown men chasing each other around in circles in funny looking chariots, and others paying money to watch!.....We like it though. GO DANIEL1

259

I guess you missed some of his brilliant moves in this race.

SC ruined Vettel's race as his two stop strategy was killed.

Oh btw. Why do you even watch F1?

260

I'm beginning to think the Red Bull's would actually have been 2s a lap quicker themselves in recent years had they had a decent driver!

261

Lol'd at that!

262

8-0

263

I sense another red bull man throwing his toys out of the pram 🙂

264

Exactly, mow we saw the real pace of the Mercedes.

2 seconds faster than anything else. Both in the first stint and after the pace car.

265

Exactly my thoughts too.

Thanks Maldonado, thanks safety car and thanks Mercedes for letting them have a go at each other for 3 laps.

266

Oh come on Seebee your negativity is unbecoming.!

I thought you were better than that.

Besides what went on behind the Mercs was also brilliant wheel to wheel action the whole race, and not just because of DRS.

267

So let me get this straight Sebee, Mercedes are 2 seconds a lap faster? That's not one but two fingers in the air, right?

268

You've got a fat lady singing somewhere? I was Sebee when Schumi was winning I am Sebee today, I will be tomorrow!

Be honest, would it not be a cheesy move by me to name myself Lewee, after 3 GPs too? 😉

269

How many laps after safety car?

What is the gap to P3?

Thank you.

270

Maybe you should change your name to Mercedee, Lewee or Nicky. Problem solved 😛

271

It's not Mercedes' fault that Red Bull have had their, how would Herr Vettel say it, "balls in the pool".

272
Alexander Supertramp

Hahaha, boomerang!

273

@Seebe, c'mon admit it. This was the best race we have seen the past four years. Lewis and Nico raced each other from start to finish. It was always going to end like it did between Lewis and Nico, though might not have been so intense without the safety car.

There was battle up and down the grid. This is a slap in the face for all the critics of the new formula. Many thanks to Mercedes for letting both of their drivers to race. This race is a box-office material. Lewis, Nico and all the drivers got me saying wow! Wow all race long.

I enjoyed it.

274

Im with Sebee here. what are we missing James , Lewis kept Nico at bay on fresh softs and no margin - why would Nico have more chance with worn softs against worn Mediums AND 10 sec further behind- it makes no sense-why are Merc strategists saying this ? Thanks

275

@Mike Martin- and what do you think would have happened to Nicos Soft tyres driving flat out for 13 laps trying to make up 10 + sec??. & once he got into dirty air after 13 laps - how easy do you think it would have been to pass on completely shod soft tyres -- Comeon guys - Use some sense for gods sake!

276

Appreciate your feedback as always James & .if this advise from Merc was before the safety car we would all be happily agreeing with it. But like I said After what we saw what Lewis did - do you believe it..... You dont think it has something to do with Mercedes being German and trying to keep a level support for its drivers...i?! Its getting a bit silly- he got walloped by Lewis twice during that race- jumped at the first pit stop and again on the harder tyre.. Mercedes are playing it down.. Would of.. Could of.. Should of.. But didnt & Nico showed how much he got exposed in the post race - that was clear for all to see.. He will have his days too.. But trust me they will be much less from here on in.. Its a huge psychological blow

277

Closing a 10 second gap in free air is much faster than wheel to wheel racing. Nico lost lots of time with his charging(and overheating the tires in the process). If Nico would had got in front he would be breezing away with ease.

Suck it up guys. This was a 100 meter sprint race between Usain Bolt and Michael Jordan and Jordan actually miraculously won it.

Don't belittle such a great day and race.

278

Thanks James but 1 or 2 laps warming up a medium tyre (& warming up softs) arent going to cost you10 sec are they..Further, during the race we were seeing some teams 1-2 sec between the Softs and the Mediums. Even using yours/mercs .8sec diff Nico would have needed 12.5 laps just catch Lewis if they pitted with 10 laps remaining-Game Over. If he was that much faster he should have passed him within a few laps of the safety car.

Engineers and teams can sit & calculate laps times and deg rates etc. But they cannot determine what drivers do when they are fighting to win!.

I cant believe anyone could suggest Nico had a hope with a 10 sec gap after what we saw on Sund. Something is not right here...

279

Well that is from Ham's engineers at Merc, so if that is not good enough for you, I give up

280

rosberg wouldn't caught hamilton up had the safety not been deployed and we would've seen the same show as hamilton put on for us.

281

yes, in the end Lewis had NO gap, and Nico WAS on the faster tyres, how can we assume it would have been easier for Nico with a 10 sec gap? Lewis to trundle around & wait till Rosberg finally catched up?

282

Hamilton had a 13 sec lead before the SC and he had no issues to warm the tyres up. As niki Lauda said after the race, Lewis was able to put so much heat in the medium tyres to be able to go almost as fast as on the soft tyres

283

Because the softs were around 0.7s -0.8s a lap faster, plus mediums had warm up issues for a lap or two.

With no safety car they would have pitted with 10 seconds or so to go and Rosberg would have caught him, if Ham didn't have at least 9/10 secs lead

284

Yes going to be very difficult to choose a driver of the day yet again!

So many F1 / Gp2 / Gp3 etc champions on the grid this year,very very high quality racing throughout the whole field...

I am a huge Lewis fan - but I do hope this season doesn't into a red bull style domination - come on Ferrari Red Bull Mclaren etc sort your cars out and give them some competition?

285

It was a great race, but I'm sorry, Canada 2011 still beats it!

286

BTW....so many exciting races last 4 years. Let's start a list right here:

287

so exciting! maybe at the next race only the 2 mercs schould race, like that fantastic race in the USA a couple of years back! who cares about the rest of the field, this new f1 is almost as great as that race was!

288

What are you talking about? Safety car made that ending possible. Lewis was working on his meal schedule for the week after the first pitstop. If SC do didn't come out it would have been a Vettelesque GP with Lewis showing how it's done.

289

James Allen: While I agree Rosberg would have caught Hamilton at the end, it would have been less close than it was and we would not have seen that immaculate and extended defence we did see. Beyond that because the track had rubbered in it drastically reduced the gap between the soft and medium compounds, and of course Rosbergs soft tyres would have lost their edge in just the same way so I think the result we would have seen would have been more lightly that than the one we did. Marvellous race, quite outstanding!

290

Sebee obviously knows better than the Merc strategists! 🙂

291

Sebee, you need to listen James, he is a zillion times better informed than you.

Also, drop your obsession that it's the cars that win races on their own, it's not.

Best car + best team + best strategy + best driver + best luck = winner.

292

Sebee, he would have caught him but would have had just as much difficulty in getting by, the sc gave us 10 laps of Merec battling but we would still have had 2 or 3, don't forget the stops would have been on different laps without the sc.

293

@James Allen, Hamilton had a gap from more than 10 sec. The soft tyres was said to be 0,5 sec faster a lap, how would it have added up with 17 laps to go?

You and Nicos engineers made a mistake at thinking Hamilton would wear out his soft tyres faster in the 2nd stint, but he kept them alive for 20 laps and still was able to push. This was the crux where the Rosberg strategy failed

294

If he was going to gap 10s+ due to tire James, where was that speed differential after restart? Rosberg had benefit of DRS and soft rubber and couldn't pass. If the speed differential was that high he would have breezed by in a DRS zone by staying close in pre DRS section thanks to tire. No?

295

Disagree, It would have been very close at the end without SC.

Rosberg on faster tyre would have caught Hamilton just before the end. I've been through it with Merc strategy guys

296

Sebee, you can't be serious! Even without the SC, it would still be an amazing race. Before the SC, I was under the assumption that the lap difference between the option and prime was 0.5s/lap, which was less than expected, but still large enough to have made the last stint an interesting battle.

You are looking at it in hindsight and just saying it was all pre-ordained to happen the way it did. Nothing could be further from the truth!

At the time of the SC, I was sure that we were robbed of an interesting finish (how wrong I was!).

The Merc is incredibly fast, you are right. It was just over 2 sec/lap faster after the SC, you're right. The designers and engineers at Mercedes and Merc HPP no doubt deserve huge kudo's for this car. I was glad to see Aldo Costa - the Ferrari scapegoat for their 2011 car - up on the podium accepting the Constructors' trophy.

But Sebee, who won that race today??? Who found themselves 10 laps from the finish with their teammate right behind them, in the same car, but with the faster tires? Do you for a moment believe that Nico didn't think "it's mine now" in his helmet after the SC erased Hamilton's 9.5s advantage?

Give credit where it's due. It can only be to your credit to do so.

297

KRB,

Fine, you dragged it out of me. 🙂 You are right that when SC came out Nico surely thought the race came to him.

And yes, Lewis drove clean, left room and read each play perfectly. Kept the charging Nico in P2 even though the latter had benefit of DRS and faster rubber. It was 10 laps in a pressure cooker and Lewis didn't put a wheel an inch off. These are facts.

You really think we would have had that finish without SC? I doubt it very much. I can't believe how in battle mode the MBs left the grid 20s back in 10 laps. They will lap P3 at Monza.

298

@Sebee

I can’t believe how in battle mode the MBs left the grid 20s back in 10 laps...

Superb line 🙂

299

KRB,

Mercedes engine in P3 car as well that was 25s back.

300

Thanks for that ... I was starting to worry about you, thinking you'd crossed to the dark side.

As for the finish, at the time I (and I assume most others) didn't know! I thought if the option is 0.50-0.65 sec/lap faster, and they switch (HAM to Med; ROS to soft) with 17 laps to go, that we would be in for a storming finish. Of course in hindsight it's clear that w/o the SC that Lewis would've won comfortably. I guess Rosberg technically was fine to run to the end w/o another pitstop, but I don't know if that was ever part of the plan.

Not sure if they'll be that far ahead at Monza. They'll be quicker than most through the Lesmos, but otherwise the Merc-powered cars will be closer than they were here. The Renault-powered cars, on current power, would be way down, although the Red Bull will be good getting around Parabolica and onto the power sooner than most.

301

Funny stuff! Just as Ricciardo seems to be revealing a few truths that aren't engine related too! 🙂

thank goodness we can now see wheel to wheel racing from start to finish now that the wretched tyres we had in the last few seasons are GONE.

This race was a classic from start to finish. Just incredible!

302

Oh yes ofcourse Webber never passed or finished before Vettel.

Judgement on one race..my dear god.

303
H.Guderian (ALO fan)

"This MB is a 2s per lap faster space ship. They opened up 20s to P3 in 10 laps!"

I did not hear you saying the same thing when that same thing hapenned with Vettel.

Where were you, Seebe???

304

@ Sebee I have a feeling you're going to have a very long long year. lol

305

At least my hearing will remain undamaged by season end. My audiologist has been urging me to quit F1, now he will think I "listened" to him!

306

Please close the door on your way out. I am new for f1 but I remember all your posts the past years. I don't usually respond to your comments but wishes to see your reaction when your boy is unable to beat a better teammate on average car.

Bring on china! Can't work, can't think of other thing?

James, do you think there may be some change to the rule to close the gap? Like engine upgrade for Renault & Ferrari

307

Another red bull fan?

308

Of course it was. Maybe the boys in the engine shop should drive the cars too.

309

Just pointing out what I've been hearing last few seasons. It's funny a bit how now a shoe is on the other foot and those views are gone about as fast as a Mercedes into the lead.

Like Lewis is winning, not the car. But Newey was winning not Vettel.

Or RBR domination was boring, but 2s per lap MB domination likes of which RBR never achieved is exciting.

I find that funny. Let's check the temperature and ratings by 10th GP when Mercedes wins WCC in Germany.

310

Sebee, although you may not have noticed, Rosberg had the same car as Lewis on Sunday.

311

Bob, Sebee

You people are being very bitter.

You are going to have to learn how to accept defeat.

I'm going to enjoy watching Vettel losing his crown.

Vettel is a class act and living legend but he was never massively more talented or faster than Kimi, Hamilton and Alonso and he has been very fortunate up till now.

What F1 needed was competition and we are getting that this year.

Red Bull deserved their success and now Mercedes are worthy of theirs.

Yes the Mercedes domination is bigger than any advantage since early 1998, but Rosberg and Hamilton cant do anything about that.

At least they are permitted equal status.

The RBR domination was boring.Simple.

The Mercedes domination will be boring at times this season but nothing about Bahrain 2014 was boring. Even you Sebee will have to agree with that.

You Hamilton haters are getting what is due.

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Is Hamilton winning because of the car? Yes, definitely. But he's not being favored and he has a team mate who can keep him honest throughout the race unlike Vettel in previous years which is why RBR domination was boring. Also Hamilton's class has already been certified (He matched a double world champ in his first season). Vettel's has not.

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Off course Lewis is wining because he has the fastest car, don,t let some if his more star struck fans wind you up.

I have always been a Hamilton fan because I believe he is the best seat of your pants dri