Hamilton wins despite more pit stop problems (McLaren race review)

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Hamilton withstood pressure from Alonso for much of the race

Hamilton delivered a top-drawer performance, under considerable pressure for most of the race, to win the Canadian Grand Prix and take the championship lead.

McLaren made a risky call on strategy which was ultimately vindicated and Hamilton bounced back from another pit stop setback with some great overtaking.

Jenson Button Lewis Hamilton
Qualifying position 4 1
Qualifying time comparison (Q3) 1’15.520 (+0.415) 1’15.105
Race position 2 1
Average race lap 1’20.510 (+0.032) 1’20.478
Laps 70/70 70/70
Pit stops 2 2

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Jenson Button

There were times in qualifying when Button lagged a long way off Hamilton’s pace. He got it together in the end to qualify within four tenths of a second of his team mate.

Button lost a place to Mark Webber as he struggled on the super-soft tyres at the start of the race, but gained it back through the pit stops.

While chasing Alonso, after an otherwise quiet race, McLaren told him they were catching traffic which might present an opportunity for him to pass. Button seized it, drawing past Alonso on the outside as they ran towards turn eight, claiming second place.

But it wasn’t enough to stop Hamilton overtaking him in the championship.

Compare Jenson Button’s form against his team mate in 2010

Lewis Hamilton

Became the first driver to beat Red Bull to pole position in 2010, claiming his third from three attempts at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve.

McLaren started both cars on super-soft tyres, which looked like a risk as they had proved weak on long runs in practice. A safety car would have played into their hands but one never came – instead Hamilton pitted after seven laps of pressure from Sebastian Vettel.

Fernando Alonso pitted at the same time and for the second race in a row a slow pit stop cost Hamilton a place. But he made the first of two important passes by taking Alonso as the Ferrari driver tried to pass Sebastien Buemi.

Hamilton’s second pass came when he caught struggling leader Webber. After their run-ins at Melbourne here was an opportunity for Hamilton to make the sort of mistake under pressure we saw several times in his championship-winning year.

But he motored by cleanly and the gap it bought him over Alonso effectively won him the race.

He put on a quick burst of speed late in the race, after his team mate passed Alonso, to discourage Button from making a bid for the lead. His 13th career win was up there with his best.

Compare Lewis Hamilton’s form against his team mate in 2010

2010 Canadian Grand Prix

    Browse all 2010 Canadian Grand Prix articles

    Author information

    Keith Collantine
    Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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    91 comments on “Hamilton wins despite more pit stop problems (McLaren race review)”

    1. Fantastic weekend for Lewis, Jenson and Mclaren as a whole but they do need to work on those pit stops. One day it may cost them..

      1. Er, may cost Lewis. Button doesn’t seem to have these pit stop problems. Funny that …

        1. S, it seems like you’re suggesting Button is favoured at McLaren. Shirley (sic) you can’t be serious…

          1. Oh no, He is serious, I’ve read his conspiracies before…

            Quite imaginative.

          2. not possible as they use different pit crews. (right?)

            1. Button retired at Monaco due to a mistake from one of the Mclaren crew. Why is it a conspiracy when it happens against Lewis but human error when it happens to Jenson?

              I’ve never seen S.Hughes present any facts to back his arguements up

          3. I am serious. And don’t call me Shirley.

            …Airplane, right? :p

            1. Bingo! Thanks for noticing :)

        2. I wouldn’t pay too much attention to Sian. She’s the sort of person to accuse McLaren of being racists for the pitstop mistake.

          I’ll bet she wasn’t watching in Spain when the same pitsop errors cost Button a podium or Monaco where they basically blew his engine…

          I’m no Button fan but “Hamooligans” really **** me off sometimes…

          1. Yes, because racism doesn’t exist as we all know, and conspiracy theories never ever turn out to be true. Hmmmm.

            1. That isn’t what anyone’s saying. But your constant, baseless insinuations about Button on many other comment pages have gone beyond tiresome. Please make them somewhere else if you haven’t got anything more constructive to contribute.

            2. What percentage of conspiracy theories are true is the more pertinent question.

            3. Well, probably 0.5% of conspiracy theories turn out to be true, not a very good return rate, but enough to create an absolute conviction in the credulous that their particular theory is true too. The problem, S Hughes, isn’t pointing out the racism that’s been evident against Hamilton at some points in his career (witness the many Spanish fans in 2007, some of Flav Biatore’s comments etc.), but that this is endemic and continual. I just don’t see it as a major issue or obstacle now to his F1 career, if it ever was more than an unpleasant nuisance. Your stance seems totally counterproductive and factually baseless. It makes no sense, at all, to argue that McLaren are plotting against someone they’ve spent years nurturing! If this is an issue specifically about Whitmarsh favouring Button, I doubt it, but if so, so what? Did Dennis favour Hamilton (over Alonso say) just because of his skin colour? As he supposedly favoured Hakkinen over Coulthard? You’re just crying wolf too many times…

            4. @ Keith:

              I am sorta disappointed to read this kind of charged response from you!

              Seems like S Hughes pushed your Button?

              I don’t agree with S Hughes’ opinions, but telling him/her to ‘… make them somewhere else…’ is not cool, coming from the blog moderator.

              Do I have to change my otherwise high opinion of you, Keith?

            5. telling him/her to ‘… make them somewhere else…’ is not cool, coming from the blog moderator.

              On the contrary, my interest is to promote a good quality of debate on this site. If that means preventing certain people who can’t act reasonably from participating I am quite happy to.

              There are plenty of other places to discuss F1 who offer completely unrestricted and unmoderated commenting and their standard of debate is dismal as a result.

            6. “It makes no sense, at all, to argue that McLaren are plotting against someone they’ve spent years nurturing!”

              Thank god, someone can speak the truth to the “Hamooligan” (good one Nehpets).

        3. S Hughes – he did in Spain.

          1. Okay, I’ll be keeping a eye on it though.

            1. Hang on while I put my tin foil underpants on!

            2. S Hughes,

              I would recommend not keeping an eye on it and instead enjoying F1 and many other things in life. Conspiracy theories do come true once in a while but the vast, vast majority do not even come close to being true (Moon landing conspiracy and 9/11 spring to mind). Do you really think that after years of careful preperation and apprenticeship Maclaren would suddenly turn on Hamilton? Maclaren appear to be treating both their drivers with massive respect and fairness and this in turn seems to be reflected by the drivers themselves (has anyone ever seen to world champions getting on so well in the same team before?). Please supply some hard evidence if you really want anyone to take you seriously.

            3. Lee, I am unconcerned if anyone takes me seriously or not. I am expressing my opinion. Obviously it annoys a lot of you, not least the excellent host of this site, but I maintain my opinion nevertheless.

              In my defence, I have seen many comments on F1 sites this season – BBC, Autosport, James Allen, even this site – saying exactly the same thing as me only to be abused and shouted down. Be that as it may, my opinion stands.

              I think Whitmarsh does favour Button. My hard evidence? Just observations, like the many observations about Red Bull favouring Vettel despite no hard evidence. Whitmarsh weeping after the Australia win saying you’ll be unlikely to find a better drive in F1 than that when in that very race, Lewis drove one of the best races I’ve ever seen. Taking Lewis’ engineer away which is a major disruption that Massa didn’t have to endure. Slow pit stops that put Lewis behind opponents meaning he has to try harder to get back his position. The extra unnecessary pit stop in Australia where he could have got 2nd. Whitmarsh saying his favourite part of the Canada race was Button overtaking Alonso. What about Hamilton overtaking Webber and Alonso, both crucial overtakes and necessitated by his teams incompetence? Whitmarsh holding Button’s hand and whispering to him before the Canada race. Didn’t see him doing that with Lewis (unless FOM didn’t show it). Not to mention the “miscommunication” in Turkey which nearly cost him the win. Button DID LIE (FACT) in Turkey when he said he wasn’t given a lap time only for Tim Goss to say he was and for him to then admit it in Canada. Very similar things have occurred in the Red Bull team resulting in most people thinking they favour Vettel. Why doesn’t everyone think the same in the McLaren team?

              Why? Because in this fair country of ours, racism, whether overt or subconscious, is still very prevalent and the media, BBC, blogs, F1 writers, have an almost unspoken rule to never criticise Button, to praise him to the hilt for achieving things that Lewis regularly does, and to viciously attack Hamilton for the slightest misdemeanour that would go unnoticed if it was Button. Do you really think if the situations were reversed in Turkey it wouldn’t have been headline news that the McLaren team seemed to slow Button down so that Lewis could overtake, and then Lewis lied about target lap times? I don’t think so.

              I’ve seen many comments about how it seems so hard for the BBC to praise Lewis for his great drives – there was hardly a mention of it on the BBC F1 forum. I have just seen a great write up about Lewis’s race http://www.bbc.co.uk/dna/606/A70169457 on the BBC forum from someone confused to see so little written about his amazing race in Canada (do read it). If Button had won the race Lewis did in Canada, we wouldn’t hear the end of it from the BBC, James Allen, et al.

              I could go on, but I think I’ve given enough ammunition for those on here who like to abuse those with an opinion that is unpalatable to them, to go on about tin foil hats, etc.

              The reason why Button is being favoured? Personal preference for the reason stated above. They don’t knock Lewis out of the race; they just do enough to try and get Button ahead of him. From my viewpoint, Hamilton has had to work twice as hard this season for his results mainly due to the team. McLaren know they can do this and Hamilton will still get results for the constructor’s title, so I do wish people wouldn’t keep asking why McLaren would do this. They are not, IMO, trying to stop Hamilton finish the race, just finish the race behind Button.

              So abuse away. There are a significant amount of people who hold the same view as me (I’ve seen for myself) and it’s easy to lump us all in the category of tinfoil hatted loonies. Whatever, we should still be able to express our opinion, and I find it fascinating and annoying in equal measure how the British F1 journalist fraternity protect the Button’s honour so vigorously.

            4. Paper Tiger
              15th June 2010, 18:17

              If McLaren were a bunch of racists, surely the best thing to do (from their point of view) would have been NOT TO HIRE A BLACK PERSON IN THE FIRST PLACE. Unless of they only noticed he was Black after they hired him and thought “Oh no, we´ve hired a Black person! Let´s do all we can to screw him over!”

            5. Because in this fair country of ours, racism, whether overt or subconscious, is still very prevalent and the media, BBC, blogs, F1 writers, have an almost unspoken rule to never criticise Button, to praise him to the hilt for achieving things that Lewis regularly does, and to viciously attack Hamilton for the slightest misdemeanour that would go unnoticed if it was Button.

              Presumably you include me in that. If so you are completely wrong. I have never done that, nor do I have any desire or intention to.

          2. Come on guys. Hard evidence? This blog is not supposed to be District Court. Yeah S Hughes is without foundation in claiming racist favoritism against McLaren but what is the point of censoring her? In fact, the subsequent replies show the value of allowing relevant, informed answers to inform people about the sport. No one is insulting anyone so I say play on.

            Anyway, bald-faced conspiracy theories often provoke thought. For example, it was once a conspiracy theory that VMM’s fuel-saving orders in Turkey were in fact an order to hold station. Why would someone accuse the esteemed Martin Whitmarsh of such scandalous treachery and why was this libel tolerated? If the allegations of racism are malicious and unfounded let Martin Whitmarsh’s barrister have her served and summoned. I hear you guys make the losers pay costs. Super harsh, but I guess it keeps people in line.

            1. That’s true, and I’m not for censorship, though this isn’t my site to decide anything. But ideally a site like this should be – and generally is – a place for semi-reasoned discussion. The point being made to S Hughes, as I understand it, is for her (? sorry if I missed that one) to back up these fairly heavy claims about endemic racism in McLaren and the UK media with something more than conjecture. I’m willing to listen, really, But I want to know, for example, why Dennis favouring Ham over Alonso isn’t a race issue, but (hypothetically!) Whitmarsh favouring Button is! You can’t have it both ways. Or you can, if you’re completely unreasoned.

              That said, I’m obliged to watch Brazilian TV coverage of F1 and specifically hear the commentator Galvão, who’s ‘thing’ against Hamilton is well-known and smacks totally of racism, but hey, maybe he just doesn’t like people called Lewis, always possible…!

            2. I don’t think its fair to deride contributors like this way, since the whole issue is about fairness. Unlike some people, I did notice the inequity but thought it was because Whitmarsh is expecting Hamilton to do the miracles while Button is set doable tasks.

              McLaren should stop assuming Hamilton to be part of their family who will stick with them no matter what. At the end of the day, there is so much one can do and Hamilton is no exception.

              One thing to come out this season is how opportunistic JB is. All he has to do is sit back and catch up with the front troubled by LH pace so he could pick up the leftovers whether its ailing vehicles or sleeping drivers.

            3. S Hughes should be happy that Hamilton won again. Unless you are not a fan of his? There’s your conspiracy :)

          3. Tricky one for you Keith, you run a site that has allowed you to indulge your passion, and has gone from strength to strength by allowing and encouraging the fans to participate in one of the few ways that are possible for the armchair fan, but whether baseless or not, it is the freedom to make your comments on a site like this, and the opportunity to have your opinion published, whether anyone agrees with you or not, that is the real strength of the site.
            There will always be others who disagree with somebody else’s opinion, and will be motivated to respond. You have provided that, and I, for one enjoy it, but if you try to stifle the bits you don’t like, then what makes the site strong, could undermine it.
            Just a thought…

            1. martin bell
              16th June 2010, 10:35

              I just think it’ a shame that S Hughes doesn’t seem to enjoy the races very much, spending all her(?) time looking for these conspiracies. I guess there’s something for everyone in F1.

    2. Superb race from Hamilton, I think he was the only driver to both have great pace and not make a single mistake. He showed great maturity to make the hard tyres last longer than anyone else and still had the pace at the end to put Button in his place when he started to close in.

      I have to say I also think Lewis’ pole lap was one of the best laps I’ve seen in a very long time, and it was great to hear the excitement of the crowd both when he crossed the line and when he got out to push.

      Button also had a very very solid race but just didn’t have the pace all weekend to match Lewis. He did well to take advantage of Alonso’s traffic problems and showed good pace throughout the race, fully deserving of his 2nd place.

      In my opinion if Lewis continues on the form he has been on this season and the Mclaren continues to be a race winning contender, he has to be the favorite for the title.

      1. on of lewis’s atributes is that nowdays he is almost always on a very impressive form, hadrly ever having off days recently.

        1. Now you mention it, other than Melbourne qualifying, I can’t remember a single ‘off day’ this season. (Perhaps qualifyng in Malaysia but that was more down to the team despite his spin, and qualifying in China but this was more down to a sudden change in the tyre and track conditions and therefore the balance of his car).

          Either way, he has yet to have an off day on a Sunday

          1. spain was not enough?

            1. Well, he literally had an “off-the-circuit” at the end of the Sunday in Spain, if that is what you mean. But that is most likely due to the car giving up, not the fault of Hamilton.

            2. Hamilton had a great race in Spain, managing to split the Bulls at a track where they were as much as half a second quicker on race pace. He was just unlucky with a tyre failure, nothing he could do about it.

        2. Yes, I’ve noticed that Lewis is usually on the pace from Friday at each race. Jenson has struggled at some races.

    3. maestrointhesky
      15th June 2010, 1:15

      I noticed Hamilton made his own decision for his second pit stop when he was on the precipice being overtaken by Alonso. His team were totally unprepared for him and he out manoeuvred Alonso, who was probably going to follow him in again if he was still behind. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, Hamilton is learning more from Button than we could have ever thought in terms of strategy. Making his own decisions rather than waiting for the team won Button 2 races this year. Not as pronounced, this pit stop decision appears to have given Hamilton the edge in Canada and is perhaps the first sign that he has matured this season in his development as a driver!

      1. i thought the team looked prepared for him…so did the speed commentators (although you cant go by anything they say apparently lol) over all i enjoyed the race and LH drove brilliantly. great wknd for mclaren

        1. On the BBC, they actually commented on the fact that the crew only just got the covers off of the tyres in time. So I think maybe he did call it at the last moment.

      2. Looking at the transcript on McLaren’s website – after 17:34 – it looks like they called Hamilton in: http://mclaren.com/home

        1. This is true… I expect the lateness of coming out into the pits was so not to give away to Ferrari that he was coming in. In Turkey we saw Webber being called in as a reaction to the Mclaren guys out in the pit lane

        2. maestrointhesky
          15th June 2010, 1:56

          Had a look and yes point taken. Maybe it was his intentions to allow Alonso to draw alongside to remove the tow Alonso would get following, compromise his subsequent corner and crucially prevent Alonso following him into the pit lane and getting the jump as he did in the first pit stop.

        3. and look at just after 18:00!
          Jenson: ‘Can you only talk on the straights, please?’
          PIT: ‘understood, sorry’


          1. LOL

            I remember Kimi wobbling last year as his pit crew started talking to him in the middle of a serious turn! and him “yelling” the same thing to them… although for the iceman, it came out as a monotone


            I was at the race and it was smokin!!

      3. Maybe he is learning that he can’t count on the team to give him sound counsel in these matters. Which is slightly different.

        Did it have to do with Ron D. in the pits? Also, I bet that Hamilton’s pit stop fail went so nicely with Ron there. VMM has gone from having most respected pit crew to being a reliable liability this year. Maybe Ron can offer up some tips to his successor.

        1. I can’t remember McLaren for having the most respected pit crew recently.

          I know Benneton had it, then Ferrari with Schumi were good, Renault also was very good recently.
          Now Mercedes seems to be doing a very good job at fast pitsopts and Red Bull does fast stops, but only sometimes.

      4. Mr. Zing Zang
        15th June 2010, 4:06

        Hamilton has nothing to learn from Button. Stop speaking crazyness, saving tyres and knowing when to back down is nothing new. All that is happening is the new no refueling format is kicking in.

        1. He does have to learn from Button. Driving according to his needs (fast when needed, take it slower when possible), thinking ahead and for himself with race strategy etc. Those are parts where he can learn.

          On the other hand, Button can learn from Lewis how to make more of the car even when not perfect.

          A great pairing where both give something a little bit different to the team and each other.

        2. Looing at the way Lewis is handling the media this season, is very similar to the way Jenson does it.

          There is more than just on track learning to be got.

        3. I agree with Bas and Ady that he has been learning a lot from Button already this season, especially in Australia, and China again, he was a bit miffed that his great drives only got him so far, as Button was winning, but since then he has seemed to have taken that on.

          I liked the “Okay Lewis, you showed that you have the pace, now save tires” reminder though – I guess his engineer wanted to remind him of the “finish first, then first make sure you finish” lesson. It could almost have been Rob Smedley to Massa :)

      5. Lol Hamilton learning from Button. That has to be a joke.

        Come on people. Button had two mostly lucky tyre calls. That’s IT. Apart from that Hamilton has been showing Button a clean pair of heels.

        Button had some incredibly poor strategy calls too. Malaysia for instance.

        Button usually isn’t far behind Hamilton. That’s pretty good and he should be happy with that.

        Mostly Button is mostly benefitting from the work Hamilton is doing. Button is struggling to keep up, but because Hamilton is constantly fighting with the other fast cars, they lose pace and in the end Button can catch up a little.

        Of course Hamilton could take it easy like Button too, but then he’d end up third or fourth like Button would if Hamilton wasn’t making waves up front.

    4. Hamilton’s critics constant complaint that he would destroy his tires during a race, because of his aggressive driving style. Well that myth should be laid to rest, after Sunday’s performance.

      1. Don’t bet on it. Didn’t you hear DC on the BBC exulting about Button being “the King of smooth driving and conserving his tyres”, then he said in a disappointed tone, “but Hamilton ended up on the top step”? I wonder why he didn’t put 2 and 2 together and deduce that maybe, just maybe, Hamilton is good at conserving his tyres too. No, this tyre-chewing myth will run and run I’m afraid if even an ex-driver and the BBC commentating team keep it fuelled.

    5. I hope that da wdc is between lewis and jenson and that they do have good fights.I’m beginning to believe that as a team mclarens r alredy pulling off into da distance for the other constructors championship.they r a good team and there is no favorits.I think ppl should stop being so conspirotal(lol)the team wants to win so too do lewis and jenson.theirs is a formula1 supremacy inda making and I believe they no it.

      1. Woah, text speak-tastic.

        But I do agree that things look pretty rosey at McLaren at the moment. I’d wait until Silverstone though to see just how good a chance they have of taking both championships.

      2. Hmm… I do wish people would write their comments properly. I gave up after 2 lines there. Maybe I’m just lazy, but txt spk just makes things more difficult to read, so I stop reading.

        On the other hand, I probably put more effort into writing this comment than it would have taken to read Wayne’s comment.

    6. Lewis is a great driver, maybe along with Fernando Alonso the best in current field… Actually, Michael Schumacher is not at the level as before, but I hope to see more from him in the future…
      And back to Lewis, he is also very consistent this year looking at his races performances, only Jaime Alguersuari is surprisingly matching him in this… Other drivers had too many ups and downs and Jenson is not an exception… He had great races in Australia, China, Turkey and Canada but then put quite poor or moderate performances in Monaco, Bahrayn, Malaysia and Spain…

    7. I like Jenson’s comment over the radio

      “Can you only talk on the straights, please?”

      1. I noticed that on the Mclaren site, there are many more messages being sent to lewis than Button. Is this reflective of their censorship policy? Or is it actually representative.

        I wouldn’t be surprised entirely if Lewis got more “coaching” (as Massa does) through the race, Button seems to be more strategically minded, although this maybe just be down to Lewis still being, relatively speaking, a Rookie.

        1. Not all “Coaching” is transmitted. The site seems to favour transmitting LH. I have been following the trend too and at first, I got the impression the team will send LH out to find out how the track looks, especially on Fridays, then they will give his findings to JB. But that was obviously wrong. It is just that they don’t transmit JB’s message …… it just wonders me tho……

          1. As far as I was aware, the entirety of McLaren’s radio transmissions is made available to FOM, I would suspect the same would be true on the McLaren website.

            That, or maybe people are simply more interested in what the team says to Lewis?

            1. I am pretty sure not all messages are shown on the McLaren site. I noticed in Australia (Lewis comments on tyre strategy) and checked for Turkey as well.

              Sometimes they don’t show messages put on television until after the session/race too.

              Maybe we could ask Keith to question McLaren on this if a opportunity arises.
              Safe for that, the McLaren site is nice for fans, so only a little bit more complete and it would truely be great.

            2. Yeah, that McLaren website is useless. They only give a small selection of the transissions that are actually sent.

              Besides the team also sends information to the dashboards of the drivers which we don’t get to read. ie the target lap times, engine settings and such.

        2. If there is more communication between the pit and Lewis than to Button, perhaps its because Lewis can probably multi task better.

      2. For me the exchange between Vettel and his engineer was good as well, telling him to forget even thinking about fastest lap.

        1. That was actually Christian Horner – Red Bull Team Principal.

          1. That makes it even better!

    8. That guy they have removing the front right was slow for both Hamilton’s stops and one of Buttons. Hopefully McLaren will look at the footage and replace him.

      1. Ha i read “front wing” the first time in your comment and was baffled.

        Now i understand, nice spotting. Last time i think it was the guy in the rear left having trouble.
        They might be working on it, or it was just “bad luck”, but McLaren has not been good in executing pit stops this year, having multiple small lapses.

    9. I really like these ‘by the team reviews’. Excellent work. Makes this site shine at the top of the pile.

    10. Jenson reminds me a little of Graham Hill, not as outrageously gifted as his peers, Jackie Stewart & Jim Clark he nevertheless won 3 world championships by not getting an inferiority complex about it.

      Jenson knows Lewis is quicker than him and probably anyone so he acknowledges this and plays his own hand which owes more to driving tactically than outright pace.

      Lewis can learn this from jenson, its debatable Jenson can learn from Lewis how to be quicker.

      btw- 3 genuine world class drivers, several who are close (jenson, britney, webber, kubica) and a cranky and slow legend sticking his elbows out. This is almost the 2nd golden age for F1. Enjoy it while it lasts.

    11. The theory about the tire-saving-genius advantage of certain drivers and their expected ability to prosper without refueling has been busted. This was supposed to be the chief mechanism of how the refueling ban would improve racing, remember?

      When the tires are generally too hard, as has usually been the case, it seems the cars and drivers most able to work the tires get ahead. RBR has had little trouble this year and Ferrari’s fabled Race Pace and tire management has amounted to nothing.

      I remember reading all the promises in these pages that Hamilton would be left behind because he did not have the wits to “manage” tires. Neither he nor any other driver is in desperate straits this year for inability to make tires last. In fact, to the extent Button has this trait through habit, it is apparently not serving him well. He cannot get ahead of Hamilton on one-lap pace and he cannot extend the curve of tire-wear enough to overhaul him in the race.

    12. I have to say I am impressed with McLaren. Their pace developing the car is just unbelievable, and both drivers have been flawless on the track in recent races. I put myself in the group that in march thought the world championship would be a fight between Webber and Vettel, but if McLaren continue improving the car the real fight will be between Hamilton and Button. And in this case, Hamilton seems to me far more aggresive and hungry, while Button seems to be more solid and consistent. (With due respect to differences, remind me somehow at the McLaren with the furious Senna and the cerebral Prost).
      Awesome, awesome job by McLaren.

    13. I’ve been surprised and pleased with Button. I must admit that, although I didn’t think moving to McLaren was a mistake, I had thought that Hamilton would be far too fast, but JB is doing just fine (what a difference from Kovalainen)

      1. Also shows how much the teams need two good drivers if they’re to stand any chance of winning the Constructors Championship. Much like Mclaren should have with Hamilton and Alonso in 2007.

    14. 1st rule of blogging : dont feed the Wum’s!!

      2ndly – conspiracy theories tend to be believed by people on the margins of society who are paranoid about the mainstream.

    15. Boy JB’s move is sure looking good now…#2 WDC here we come :)

    16. i Still think Hamilton will eventually take away WDC..He seems much more calm nowadays in the race.. BUT is consistent but yet not quick enough to match his teammate in overtaking skills yet. The myth about tyre management is quite busted already as 44 laps on the same set of tyres yet Hamilton is able to pull out near to end was impressive, with one lap being 2nd fastest lap in the race on lap 60 if im nt wrng.
      I guess he will be able to do few more of those if he felt the need to open up the gap.

      A pt to note, it does seem mclaren is slightly better at tyre management than RBR.. their car seems tough on tyres, as seen in webber,they are losing 0.6 seconds each lap on a tyre that is around about 30-40 laps old ( after deducting the possible traffic at that time) . while mclaren at the later end of the race, with similarly old tyres pulled out fast laps and laps that are in the 1.18s.

    17. its funny, only a season or so ago, we were all eulogising about Vettel, his calm exterior, his affable- ness and his speed. Now we know hes human and has flaws, just like Lewis, Alonso, Button and the grate (sic) Michael Schumacher. Only at the sharp end do these traits become apparant. ANd that goes for Red Bull also, this exhaust diffuser thing seems to be their secret to their performance but they are not micro managing races very well. Is Horner out of his depth??

      1. WidowFactory
        16th June 2010, 9:58

        No, i think reliability is still RB’s biggest problem, Vettel would still be leading the championship had he not had those early-season mechanical failures. There’s not much Horner or any other team boss could have done to avoid the infamous collision in Turkey, that was purely down to the drivers not giving each other room.

        (and learn to use (sic) correctly please…)

    18. I’m not sure who’s impressed me more, Hamilton or Button.

      Button has done very well, everyone expected him to be destroyed. Yeh you could say luck here, luck there, etc., but what happened is what’s happened.

      Hamilton, meanwhile, seems to have upped his game every race and is catching up with Button in the areas Jenson is strongest in. He’s reaching an entirely new plateau of excellence, and if he wins the championship this year there will be few who could reasonably argue that he’s not better than Alonso (my current #1 of the field, though that margin is diminishing all the time).

      There are a lot of Hamilton-Button/Senna-Prost comparisons, but I personally though Schumacher (in his heyday) was more complete than either of them because his racecraft and speed were nearly as good as Prost’s and Senna’s respectively; what made him better in my view was that he could combine the two in a way the other two greats didn’t seem to. I wonder, could Hamilton be going more the way of Schumacher than Senna?

      1. well alonso is very much considered the most complete man in f1, after this season so far i think that mantle should be handed to hamilton,

        the bbc were talking about it, and he seems a bit rusty. spin in australia, jump start in china, crash in monaco, quali in turkey.

    19. I am one of those people who needs to eat their words as like many at the start of the season, i predicted Hamilton to top Button on all accounts. Both drivers for me have been solid, consistent and driven to the best of their ability. I would go as far as saying that they are the best driver pairing on the grid.

      Hamilton for me has matured so much during his time in F1 and it is really showing in his driving this year. Many a time i have heard the commentators remark as to how old Hamilton or Hamilton of old would have handled such a situation differently to how he just did. Its this mature head and driving style that has got him currently leading the championship.

      Button in my eyes has proved himself in a sense. After being simply tossed aside by many (myself included) as inferior to Hamilton in a driving calibre, he has brushed this misconception aside with solid performances and strategic calls which have put him just 3 points behind his team mate in the current championship standings.

      McLaren as a team have once again proved their exceptional development program and pace that they can apply it. I feel as a team they are better experienced and better adapted than Red Bull to deal with the kind of pressure that is there at the sharp end of the sport and more importantly, handle the pressure and strains of having two drivers at the top of their game both competing for the title. That said, Red Bull should never be underestimated.

      Another 1-2 in spain would do just nicely, but for me its Hamilton 1st.

      Oh yeah, and as for conspiracy theories, grow up.

    20. Antonyob well said, and throughly agree with your comparisons between Jenson and Graham. Look how Jenson reacted to being out qualified by Lewis in Canada. Jenson’s response was…..he was just to quick for me today…..that’s all. Contrast that with the reaction of Alonso when teammed with Lewis in 2007. At China as you well know, Lewis out qualified Alonso….and Fernando’s response was that nobody can beat me by .600….nobody….and then in a rage proceeded to tear apart the bathroom in the Mclaren pit area. When you contrast the action of Jenson with that of Fernando, you can then understand why that, Lewis feels that Jenson is the best teammate that he has had since entering F1.

    21. S. Hughes has understandable observations, however oversensitive as they may be.
      Considering the traditional make up of the F1 audience.
      It is more than acceptable that there is a small bias towards Button.
      It is obvious that Lewis is the faster driver and the stronger racer in most conditions.
      However we must remember there many other intangibles that contribute to the final result.
      And these details are not always obvious as a lap time.

      Take this weekend for example. Hamilton was almost always on it (except maybe for first practice)
      Jenson had plenty of opportunity to panic and lose his head such was the pace of his teammate.
      Instead he stayed rather calm-collected and somehow salvaged a second place.
      This skillset has served him well and cannot be attributed to the team giving him preferential treatment.
      He seems to have the flair of a succeful trader or a winning gambler knowing just when to up the ante.
      The second half of 2009 was a great example of this unheralded skill, and quite possibly prevented the championship from slipping through his fingers. As it follows this turn of fortune in his carreer makes him now quite marketable.

      Certainly from several points of view, Lewis is pure magic.
      But it would be unreasonable to expect the press to constantly hark back this message.
      As the media’s popularity rely on its reporting back what the masses want to hear.
      It could be possible the masses are more attuned to titles carrying Jenson Button.
      It is also possible that Mclaren does not escape these business decisions, driven by the demand for a certain brand.

      So in this case it would be wrong to fault any party for adapting to the demands of the consumer.

    22. ‘and if he wins the championship this year there will be few who could reasonably argue that he’s not better than Alonso (my current #1 of the field, though that margin is diminishing all the time’

      @ Icthyes: Agreed. I’m a huge Alonso fan, always have been and I still consider him to be the ‘best’ driver on the grid and would rank Hamilton a very close second. However I believe Hamilton has more raw pace and agression than Alonso. It appears of late that Hamilton seems to be ironing out his weaknesses and therefore seems to be just getting better and better. If his trajectory keeps going up the way it is, I have no doubt that all of us will rank Hamilton as number 1 in a year or two!!

    23. Hamilton did a stunner of a race.His battle with Alonso was hard but fair both showing equal respect for each other both on track & off track.I think he is now the biggest challenger for the Red Bulls.

    24. And on a side note, thank you Keith for finally calling out S Hughes – you had every right to. Though everyone is entitled to their opinion and has a right to express it, saying ‘it’s racism’ 3147 times….is…….erm…… a broken record…..hmmm…..overkill…..hmmmm…….ENOUGH!!!!

    25. Jhonnie Siggie
      16th June 2010, 5:13

      Martin witmarsh saying nice things about Button is a management decision and does not mean that he favors him. It is important that Mclaren make their investment feel welcomed in the team. When button was about to switch, ppl were saying he was entering the lion’s den, so the public relations machinery at Mclaren might be working overtime to prove equal treatment. This may at times appear to uneducated viewers to be to Hamilton’s detriment but the reality is that what happens in the background is much different from the spin you read about. Hamilton is well paid is by no means defenseless. if he was being discriminated against, you would certainly hear about it.

      1. Also i think nobody except Button and maybe Withmarsh expected Button to manage so well in the team and up his game.
        Most of us on the internet as well as in the media expect Hamilton to drive his heart out and win a lot.
        So Button achieving something is more of a supprise and news item for everybody, and therefore gets more press space.

    26. spot on siggie. but why are you giving this nincompoop the oxygen she craves?

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