Whitmarsh expects to race new diffuser

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Martin Whitmarsh said he expects McLaren to race their exhaust-blown diffusers in Germany this weekend. It brought to the British Grand Prix but removed them after Friday practice.

He said the configuration, which only Red Bull had on their cars at the start of the season, was one of two notable innovations in F1 this year, along with McLaren’s F-duct, which the team first ran a version of at Monaco in 2009.

Speaking during the Vodafone McLaren Mercedes phone-in Whitmarsh said:

We’re working on the premise that we’ll have blown diffusers on both cars to start with. In Silverstone Lewis wanted to keep the blown diffuser on on Friday night. But we made the decision there to switch them both back to the old diffuser.

We could end up dividing the drivers if there was a preference from one side of the garage to the other. If I can I will avoid that but we’ll do it if we think it’s the right way to perform.

There are advantages to running one car in one configuration and one in the other. But provided that in so doing you don’t end up rightly or wrongly accused of treating the two drivers differently.
Martin Whitmarsh

And he sees no reason to favour Lewis Hamilton over Button at present:

I think Jenson is second in the drivers’ championship and had two great wins this year. He’s proven a great racing driver and great reader of the race. But also someone who can recover from 14th to fourth is a phenomenally quick and adept racing driver, and has a lot of determination to be able to do that.

I’m sure Jenson hasn’t given way to Lewis’s charge for the world championship. He will want to win this weekend and move that momentum back in his favour and that’s just how it should be.
Martin Whitmarsh

He pointed out that it was difficult to conduct side-by-side tests of the cars in different configurations because of the time it takes to change the floors:

One of the challenges is that whereas flaps, wings and various aerodynamic appendages are fairly quickly changed on a car, and you can do a back-to-back during a session, the blown diffuser is completely different floor, different heat management components and of course a different exhaust. Therefore it’s not possible to perform an in-session back-to-back. It’s quite difficult to do it even between sessions.

So we will have to rely on the data we previously collected. There will be modifications to the blown diffuser which will probably change between the cars or from one car to another. There is a compromise – in the old days we’d go testing and have two cars run alongside each other. We can’t do that, so we’re torn between the priorities of develop the car for long term improvement versus using the very limited track time the drivers get to understand that particular event, that race circuit and prepare for Saturday qualifying.

So it’s not easy, but it’s the same challenge for everyone.
Martin Whitmarsh

He explained that part of the decision not to run the new part at Silverstone was because of other challenges presented by the circuit:

Our priority was get as much data as possible and make sure we were treating the drivers as equally as we could. I don’t regret taking it and I don’t regret running it on the Friday.

I think at the time there were a number of things happening at the circuit. The new track had some entertaining bumps in the new section and on the old sections of the circuit, presumably from construction traffic – not a feature that you normally have to deal with at Silverstone.

It was also gusty. And clearly we can’t test before races so I think we got some good information.

There were some views within team by Sunday that we could have left it on the cars but we were conscious of the need to score as many points as possible in the British Grand Prix.

So a decision was taken on Friday to eliminate some of the variables. We couldn’t eliminate the gusts or the bumps but we could eliminate [the new package].

I think it was the right decision. We then had a back-to-back in a sense – on Saturday we ran without the blown diffuser and that was useful to compare with the data we generated from the day before.

I think we did the right thing and I’m comfortable with it.
Martin Whitmarsh

Button described the car as ‘undriveable’ after qualifying but found it much better during the race. Whitmarsh believes that was because the MP4-25 performs better with a heavier fuel load:

We’ve been working hard to develop the race car this year and I think it’s been fairly quick on a number of occasions, certainly quicker than any other car including the Red Bull.

In qualifying we have comparatively struggled but I think it was a view that Jenson had based on the qualifying car, I think in the race he was quite comfortable.
Martin Whitmarsh

He believes the team are in a good position providing they keep up their pace of development:

I’m not sure we’ve been behind in the development race. I think we’ve had car that’s been capable of winning races.

You have to be reliable and quick enough to win races. I think we’ve had both of these things generally. You’d always like to be quicker, you’d always like to be more reliable. I think we’re in a reasonable position but we need to develop the car apace if we’re going to win both championships this year.
Martin Whitmarsh

However early weather forecasts suggests McLaren’s planned testing on Friday could be disrupted. Whitmarsh said:

Inevitably any race weekend can be disrupted by weather. Personally I don’t pay too much attention to weather forecasts until we get within 48 hours of it because they swing about.

We’d prefer it to be dry so we can get more information but we’ll deal with what’s thrown at us.
Martin Whitmarsh

He added he was surprised more teams hadn’t pursued their own version of the F-ducts after McLaren ran an ‘un-switched’ version of the rear wing at Monaco last year:

This year generally people knew what was coming: there would be more extreme version of double diffusers which of course will disappear next year. The double diffuser last year was something of a surprise to many of us who wouldn’t have deemed it legal were our engineers to have brought such a concept to us.

So that was a surprise and created a lot of catch-up for the teams.

This year I guess there were two things the teams generally didn’t expect. First, the move back to blown diffusers. Blown diffusers have been in F1 several times before. But they have challenges attached to them to get performance so that’s been an interesting tension for various teams.

Similarly the F-duct clearly wasn’t anticipated – oddly, because the F-duct, or a non-switched F-duct was first introduced on a McLaren in Monaco last year 14-15 months ago. Variants of that developed and the switched one obviously started this year and caused a bit of surprise.

But it’s been a particularly interesting set of challenges. I think both of them – exhaust-blown diffusers and F-ducts – are not super-expensive to implement. Certainly the F-duct is a series of carbon fibre ducts and a slot in your rear wing element.

So by Formula 1 standards the cost is within the means and capability of any team to develop and exploit. Blown diffusers offer a bit of an engine management challenge, but that aside they are not too challenging.

But they’re both very interesting topics for F1 teams. And really, historically, not the sort of thing that has been developed in Formula 1. In future we’ve got to concentrate more on high-efficiency concepts in Formula 1 but nonetheless they’ve created some interested dynamics in the season so far.
Martin Whitmarsh

Asked if he felt the championship was a two-horse race between McLaren and Red Bull, Whitmarsh answered:

I’d love to believe that but experience has told me you can’t write Ferrari off. They’re a strong team, technically capable, with fantastic resources. They’ve got a former world champion and one other top-line driver.

Mercedes similarly have another multiple world champion and a very good driver in Nico as well.

I think it’s too early to write them off

We’re trying to improve our car and do as good a job as we can do. Red Bull are clearly quick at the moment but I don’t dismiss the others.
Martin Whitmarsh

He added that he wasn’t unduly concerned by Hamilton’s first-lap contact with Sebastian Vettel at the first corner in the last two races:

You want them to be as aggressive as they can be providing the car comes around intact and not requiring a pit stop at the end of the first lap.

A Formula 1 standing start is one of most exciting spectacles. It’s a very critical phase of the race, it’s when you are closest to your competitors, you can lose places or gain them.

And you have to take some risks and have a degree of aggression to do it very well. I think Lewis has done that very well and so, indeed, has Jenson. He came around from 14th to eighth in one lap in Silverstone which was mighty impressive.

You don’t overtake cars like that without taking some risks. The skill of the really great drivers is balancing that risk, taking the right amount of risk to gain what is achievable at the start.

I think both of our drivers have done a very good job in that regard.
Martin Whitmarsh

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    Keith Collantine
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    60 comments on “Whitmarsh expects to race new diffuser”

    1. Nice little dig at Red Bull there when justifying why they didn’t give the new diffuser to just Lewis’ car ;)

      1. I also like him repeating, that these are pretty low cost solutions (as opposed to the adjustable bodywork rear wing for next year).

    2. Agree with you there Andy. I really like Martin Whitmarsh, I think that he is more open than Ron Dennis, and has made McLaren a more approachable team (if you know what i mean..). I would love to see the blown diffuser work properly and for someone to challenge the Red Bulls in qualis, i know its a long shot but it would be great for F1 if there was some change in quali, plus it will make the F1F predictions harder, rather than having to choose one of the Red Bulls, we could have to use a bit more luck and choose a McLaren/Ferrari/Renault/Merc…

      1. I think Vodaphone does a lot with the ” approachable ” aspect

        1. I hope they have a nice new video ready for Hockenheim as well. Maybe Lewis and Jenson having fun doing burn outs and quipping at borrowing eachothers wings and exhausts?

    3. They had the F-duct in last year’s Monaco GP?! Any picture of their car at that race? Keith do you have the last year’s Monaco GP pictures gallery?

      1. From what Whitmarsh is saying it was just a self-stalling rear wing, not the driver-operated (‘switchable’) version used this year.

        You can see what looks like the slot in the rear wing on Kovalainen’s car here:


        More pictures from that weekend:

        2009 Monaco Grand Prix practice pictures
        2009 Monaco Grand Prix qualifying pictures
        2009 Monaco Grand Prix in pictures

        1. IIRC, many teams had that slot, and I think Toyota pioneered it. It was understood at the time I believe that it was simply a virtual third wing element, for added downforce, rather than a passive stalling system.

          1. But from what Withmarsh said, McLaren was thinking of developing a switched version for it that far back. It’t true, that they also tested using a shark fin at several GP’s last year.
            This fits with info that they have been working on the F-duct since 2 years back. So to keep it secret they tested elements of its function and form at several GP’s to build up a total picture before putting it on.

            1. Still, it seams a bit odd that they would have run it in Monaco of all places. Arguably the F-duct would give the least amount of benefit at that race.

        2. Thanks Keith, perfect as always.

      2. I remember when Lewis crashed in quali last year at Monaco he got a radio messsage saying stay with the car. Brundle then explained teams ask drivers to do this because when Mclaren had 3 pedals they got found out because a driver left the car after a crash leaving photographers to take pictures. I remember thinking at the time if they arent hiding anything why does he have to stay? I guess we now know what they were hiding.

    4. I think McLaren’s approach in respect of the Blown Diffuser is bang on. Work like hell on the simulator, try verify the data on Friday and if it doesnj’t work, go back to the original floor. Then repeart the process for the next race by which time you should have enough data to run it in a race.

      That is a sound decision by a team that is used to winning world championships…

    5. I dont understand why lewis was not allowed to run the blown diffuser, he wanted to run it jenson didn’t so it was a case of prefrence, they could have got good data from that.

      I seem to think that martin favors jenson over lewis, in that phone-in he is constantly talking up jenson not so much for lewis though.
      When asked a question about lewis he switches it to jenson

      1. I was in the phone-in and I didn’t get that impression at all.

        Reading between the lines, I think the real reason they didn’t run the exhaust blown diffuser at Silverstone was as much reliability as anything else.

        Whitmarsh admitted it would have been useful to have the two cars running side-by-side in different configuration, yet he didn’t allow Hamilton to run it.

        It’s very difficult to get it right first time – look at what happened to Mercedes in Valencia. And we know McLaren had a failure before they ran it at Silverstone.

        With the points system we have at the moment getting zero points instead of 15 because you ran the EBD and it failed is worse than getting 15 instead of 25 because you didn’t run it and it could have been quicker.

        1. Yeah looking at it like that I suppose it was best to take the safe option.

          Hopefully the blown diffusers will work come germany, although looks like the weather good be not great which will not help development

          1. dunno what happened last line, meant the weather does not look good

            1. Ultimately and development aside, which is bet in the wet : normal or blown diffuser?

            2. I think it might even bring more of an advantage in the rain, as the downforce from speed and low ride height is less.

              The only concern is (i suppose) that they won’t be able to do as much running and get good comparable data on it in the rain.

        2. I think your right there. McLaren said repeatedly, that they were having problems with the floor warping and getting burned as well, like Mercedes had in Valencia.
          That might have been too big a risk, think of it, Lewis running second in the British GP(or maybe even first) with a burning back end!
          Instead they went for the secure option to bag a lot of points.

        3. When you think about it the decision to run them both on the old spec car is exacctly the kind of team order that Hamilton needs to make sure he continues to consistently score well,

          1. They are fighting for the championship so they have to play it safe.
            Other teams can easily run it in the race, because they don’t have much to lose.
            Let’s hope McLaren can run it now.

      2. Indeed it’s odd how Whitmarsh constantly keeps referring to how well Button is doing.

        Is he doing that to avoid any hint of a bias towards Hamilton? Or is he biassed towards Button? :)

        1. I wouldn’t read to much into it. Nothing has to be said about Hamilton really : He has been doing for the last 6 races a very solid job. And that’s what everybody is expecting from him. So nothing to add really.

        2. Sure, maybe Withmarsh is a Button fan (see the reference in the roundup). But he is very much satisfied with both guys, as his comments above show:

          And you have to take some risks and have a degree of aggression to do it very well. I think Lewis has done that very well and so, indeed, has Jenson.

          See, first he says Lewis had done a good job, than confirms that Jenson has as well.

        3. I’ve noticed the pattern over the whole season. They really are trying to get across that there’s no favouritism.

          1. Yes, but it’s something that McLaren have been telling us for quite some years now (with Mika and David and all the time from there on).

            I agree with you, that this year it seems they are really acting on it.
            I feel Lewis father not being in the pits anymore and the changes between engineers were all done to give Button a fairer basis for real equal opportunities this year.

        4. No he is not biased towards button, Here is the reason why. LH driving superiority is unquestionable,LH self confidence in his ability is unshaken, Mcleren is LH’S second home now JB is far more fragile due to the above reason and whitmarsh recognizes this,he also recognizes that JB is a very capable racer and based on experience, once you start getting beat by your team mate time after time it actually start to affect you phycollogically which will in turn impact on your driving , which will ultimately impact on the overall WCC. And whitmarsh wants both WDC & WCC hence the massaging of JB’S fragile ego. It is just clever peoples skill and mark my word WHITMARSH will go to become the best manager in F1

        5. I have often wonder the same thing.But you know, it does not seem to bother the team as whole or Lewis. So, it must be ‘all good’.

    6. That is some interesting news for sure that they ran an F-duct last year. In the story of how McLaren got to the front of the field last year that was never a major issue.

      Regarding the EBD, its nice of Whitmarsh to pronouce the idea old hat, given how hard it is to implement. Anyway, if it rains Friday they will be in a jam. I know that if the cars fail in the race due to the EBD changes, Whitmarsh will get one of those incredible stares from Ron Dennis. If they can’t test it on Friday, I say don’t bother. This is not a RedBull track, VMM are the current substantial front runners, so they need to keep calm and carry on.

      It’s also interesting that he backed up the story that Lewis wanted to run the EBD in Silverstone. This could lead to a bad place for the team if it starts to look like Button is holding back development because he can’t man up and drive fast but twitchy car. It goes to Button stereotype as some kind of precious gentleman racer who can’t wring out a troublesome car. Alternatively, if Hamilton gets denied the EBD again to keep the playing field level then he will have to wonder if he is being handicapped to favor Button and to cover Button’s weakness.

      1. Good remark Dave. LH has given them a chance and by next time around he will go public. Hopping not the way Webber did his….. (sigh)

      2. From what Withmarsh is saying here, they might actually run the EBD on Lewis car only, IF reliabilty is no issue for Sunday (a burning drive during the race is not good for Lewis championship hopes) and Button finds it too twitchy.

        We could end up dividing the drivers if there was a preference from one side of the garage to the other. If I can I will avoid that but we’ll do it if we think it’s the right way to perform.

        There are advantages to running one car in one configuration and one in the other. But provided that in so doing you don’t end up rightly or wrongly accused of treating the two drivers differently.

        1. As McLaren is a team where both sides of the garage can talk to each other easily during a race weekend (since all the engineers are in the middle), it would make sense for them to try both versions side by side at some point, although it never occured to me that their difficulties switching over at Silverstone were because they had to change the floor too……

    7. I think the attitude of striving for parity of treatment between the pilots very interesting.

      Whitmarsh is good for F1.

      1. Parity at the detriment of a possible development process?!? I know the McLaren team as a “progressive team” not a retrograde team for the purpose of parity… :(

        1. @ Will and BBQ – I agree.

          But this is the first year I can think of where there does seem to be true parity and equality of both drivers. I’m sure if you were to ask Lewis and Jenson if they felt they were being treated fairly, they would both say ‘YES’

          I highly doubt that same resonse would have occurred in any other McLaren pairing over the last ten years!

    8. I wouldn’t go so far suggesting that McLaren favors Jenson over Lewis, but I would say that the decision in remove the EBD — having Lewis want to race it — could be a real disaster if Lewis didn’t have done that fantastic lap at the Q3…

      What I understand here in this interview is that McLaren driver equality policy is the main factor to remove the EBD…

      If Jenson can’t get around that kind of problem in the handling of the car, why Lewis should pay for that?

      1. Maybe everybody think that McLaren priorized yhe parity (against development), but it doesn’t seems like McLaren…

        I believe that the decision of remove EBD was taken by the incapacity of ‘remove’ the bumps of Silverstone.

    9. Don’t forget they mentioned the EBD was degrading due to warping. It could have been they felt it wouldn’t last long enough to be reliable and provide a constant improvement throughout the race.

      1. Don’t think so. If that was the case he would have said it was a clear decision, but instead he said “So a decision was taken on Friday to eliminate some of the variables. We couldn’t eliminate the gusts or the bumps but we could eliminate [the new package].”

        He probably did not want to be held responsible if Lewis and Button had extremely contrasting results.

        Personally I fell that Button is taking a little longer to catch up with the car. I doubt he will be able to cope with the car this weekend either or for a few races.

        1. type * Personally I “feel”

          1. typo for a typo :-)

    10. Martin Whitmarsh is very clear about one thing that managing perception is more important than anything else like giving into whatever the driver’s want or developing the car by running both systems etc…

      Martin is taking the safer approach. And they can afford to because they are ahead at the moment. We have to see what he will do if VMM fall behind in the championship.

      1. It certainly looks like the drivers are satisfied with the team and each other.

        Button even offered Hamilton a lift home from Silverstone

        1. Yes, next they will be sharing an ice cream sundae after a round of mini-golf. New team motto: one team, one dessert, two spoons.

          But let’s read between the lines:
          “It’s strange. I’ve had four solid races, two wins and two second places, and yet I’m only 12 points ahead; we’ll have to see how it goes but if I can increase that gap a bit I’ll certainly be happier.”

          Translation: I’m beating this guy like a red-headed step-child and somehow he is still hanging around. Get ready for the pain, Jenson.

          1. Laughed my **** off !

    11. Once they’ve got the overheating sorted, will they have to evaluate the blown diffuser at every track, to make sure it works over the bumps there?

      John Beamer’s article described the McLaren’s characteristics beautifully – stiffer than the average suspension etc – and I can imagine them having problems on other tracks, like Singapore, with “entertaining bumps” (lovely expression – I’m expect Brundle to use that one!)

    12. Whitmarsh seems to feel that they were undone by construction vehicles at Silverstone, then I guess he is feeling good for Germany, which should be autobahn smooth.

      Also, would it not be case that RBR’s batmobile style afterburner uses extra fuel? Maybe so far they haven’t used it in a race, so it’s no matter, but think of the last time their hands were really forced in a race–Turkey—and they were seeing major fuel trouble. If VMM or Ferrari can truly get on the race pace it will be interesting to see if RBR can still reserve the jets for qualifying or will they risk roasting their engines to try to stay head in the races?

      They may have the fastest car, but they are the ones who absolutely must win the races to win the championships, not McLaren. With Lewis and Jenson shaddowing them in the races, and snagging a win here and there when RBR predictably trips up, RBR will have to win a good half dozen again just to get even. If VMM’s EBD works out, they will be suddently in a very frantic position. I predict that the RBR team dynamic will take a dramitic turn the second McLaren lands a solid pole position. I don’t think Vettel and Webber are the guys you want with that pressure, and Horner’s pit wall calls will not win close fights.

    13. Why does Whitmarsh have to keep flagellating Button’s ego? He really cannot seem to hide his fanboy ailment for Button. When asked a question about Lewis, he manages to turn it into a eulogy for Button. The way he goes on about Button’s progress up the field in Silverstone, you would think that no one has ever driven up the grid from the back before! He should ask certain Schumacher….or Massa, or Alonso, or even Vettel – who in the same race, drove from 24th to 7th, from halfway through the race! And he only need to look at his other driver to stop masturbating over “Jenson’s drive”

      Whitmarsh is a Jenson fanboy. That much is clear unless people are waiting for him to come out and say so. This has been evidenced by various strategy calls that favoured Jenson. The calls either ensure Lewis couls not challenge him, or consolidated his position. Even in the so called “great” call of Aus, Jenson had been given the option BEFORE the race to make the call to switch to inters or full wets – No such discussion took place between Lewis and the team.

      You dont have to change your estalished drivers’s engineer, and give him to the new driver, so the new driver can feel welcome. That is just taking the equality thing too far. Imagine if Vettel goes to, say Renault, and they give him Kubica’s engineer – all in the name of equality?

      What jumps out from Whitmarsh’s comments regarding the decision not to race the floor, the main overriding reason, was not its unreliabity or warping – it is rather that they could not put it on Jenson’s car, as it meant the car was undrivable. As it turned out, the “drivable” car was then driven to 14th on the grid by the same Jenson! How silly!
      It is just a matter of time before all this implodes. You do not hold back one driver, because you are trying to bring equality to the team.

      1. Hi kdavies

        In my prof. opinion, he is not biased towards button, Here is the reason why. LH driving superiority is unquestionable,LH self confidence in his ability is unshaken, Mcleren is LH’S second home now JB is far more fragile due to the above reason and whitmarsh recognizes this,he also recognizes that JB is a very capable racer and based on experience, once you start getting beat by your team mate time after time it actually start to affect you phycollogically which will in turn impact on your driving , which will ultimately impact on the overall WCC. And whitmarsh wants both WDC & WCC hence the massaging of JB’S fragile ego. LH Will get the new BDD on sat you watch, at least JB can not complain he has not been given the chance or listened to in relation to it’s drivability. just covering his back(whitmarsh) It is just clever peoples skill and mark my word WHITMARSH will go to become the best manager in F1

        1. Well said Barry. Maybe Lewis was a bit uncertain how the new garage set up would work at the start of the season, but he does not seem to need any hand-holding now, he is happy with his pace, and confident he can fight every weekend, with support from his team. He has a good chance to be the no.1 next year. Button is having more trouble in qualifying, but he is still second in the championship, and it is good of Whitmarsh to put him in the spotlight for it too. Lewis won’t mind, he knows he is fast regardless.

          1. and more so the more JB’s ego and confidence are massaged the more competitive he remains , hence more points taken away from competitors, hence he safeguards LH championship points….it’s a win win for LH and Mclaren……………….LEST WE FORGET LH AS A ROOKIE DESPATCHED A 2 TIME WORLD CHAMPION AND GOT HIM SCUTTLING OFF WITH HIS TAIL BETWEEN HIS LEGS………JB IS NO MATCH……..

            1. Barry, whilst I generally agree with your points about Button – Lewis DID NOT dispatch Alonso in ’07. FFS, they finished with the same number of wins and the same number of points. They were, for all intents and purposes very evenly matched and most would agree that it’s still the same to this day.

      2. Wow kbdavies, you have so much hatred for Button and Whitmarsh. I noticed it in your comments on the McLaren race review for Silverstone also. One of the reasons I enjoy the F1F comments so much is the well informed and balanced mindset of the majority of contributors. You might find some more like minded souls over on the Autosport forums, I doubt you will here.

        Keith, I’m not sure if comments such as the last sentence of the first paragraph are contravening the comments policy, but I most certainly would prefer not to see them here. I often read F1F when my young children are around.

        1. There’s something for everyone in F1. Some like the technology, some the glamour, some like the history, some the human contest of it. Some even enjoy the racing. Then there are some who just want to look for conspiracies in the nuances of running a team. Not my thing, but there you go. Hard to imagine that an affable bloke from Somerset can evoke such hatred, but, as I say, there’s something for everyone.

    14. @BARRY & Boyser –
      This makes no sense. We might as well say as Webber beat Vettel in Silverstone, despite the team giving Vettel his wing, then it is OK,and as he is beating him generally, then it does not matter if Vettel is favoured.

      We can then also conclude that as Webber “is happy with his pace, and confident he can fight every weekend”, then it is also ok to have his team mate favored.

      Lets take it further –
      As Vettel is “having more trouble in qualifying, but he is still second” in the RBR standings, then “it is good” of Horner “to put him in the spotlight for it too”. Webber “won’t mind, he knows he is fast regardless.”

      “And more so the more” Vettel “ego and confidence are massaged the more competitive he remains , hence more points taken away from competitors, hence he safeguards” Webber in the championship points….”it’s a win win” for Webber and RBR

      Can you both see how ridiculous it all sounds when you apply your “opinions” to another team?

      1. Look, Whitmarsh is trying to keep things cool in the garage, plain and simple. He knows that Button is now under major pressure to up his game in qualifying, and under even more pressure because it appears that Hamilton is ready for the EBD and Button is afraid of it.

        Button is a competitive guy and no slouch in the car; he has never been beaten in a team and he is going to get frustrated. If they do push through the EBD and Button flops in Germany its going to get uncomfortable.

        Hamilton for his part must sense that this is his opportunity to mentally break Button, by excelling with the new car while Button comes to grips with it. I think Hamilton will be dead-set on running the new car.

        Is Whitmarsh biased? Probably. Button is his hire, Hamilton is the old boss’s guy. He wants to put his stamp on the team and turn the page from the Dennis era. If Hamilton wins the WDC, people will say, Marty, good job running Ron Dennis’s race team. Ron Dennis will appear again a bit of a genius for spotting Hamilton and grooming him so carefully, and for giving him the seat when Whitmarsh said no.

        1. Heh Dave did whitmarh actually object to LH racing for Mclaren? Anyway i do not think LH gives 2 hoots whether whitmarsh favours JB as long as big daddy ron is live and kicking he will always ensure LH gets a fair shake at mclaren. e.g whitmarsh tried some of his shenanigans with racing strategies that tilted JB’S way and big daddy ron stepped in right away at turkey and ever since then it has become a level playing field again at mclaren and LH has never looked back since then. JB simply needs to up his game or he is done…

          1. Just to add fuel to the fire here. :-)
            Whitmarsh wanted Hamilton out of the Mclaren young drivers programme at one point.

            Moving on from that, I quite agree with DaveW here. And another point. Mclaren already has the perception from the general public that Hamilton is tight fit in that Mclaren garage, so there is a possibility he over compensates when he trys to make the drivers equal.

            Anyway, liking one driver over another is not necessarily hatred. Hamilton is already stale news there, even though younger than Button, whereas Button is the new beau. :-)

        2. DaveW – i think you are spot on. I think Whitmarsh is trying his best to be keep the peace but if he had to pick between the 2 then it would be Button – a driver he recruited as he reminded us all this week.

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