Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull, Bahrain, 2012

Red Bull race pace makes Vettel strong candidate for win

2012 Bahrain Grand Prix pre-race analysis

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Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull, Bahrain, 2012Is the 2012 season about to go all 2011 on us? Sebastian Vettel is on pole position and his Red Bull has looked good over a race distance this year.

The start

The man who started 15 races from pole position last year is back at the sharp end of the grid. But will Sebastian Vettel be able to translated pole position into victory?

The key to so many of his wins last year was building up enough of an early lead to keep away from his DRS-equipped rivals.

Lewis Hamilton, who shares the front row of the grid with him, fancies his chances of getting ahead: “The start could be key ?ǣ we?ve had good launches all season so I expect us to be able to challenge Seb down to turn one.”

However starting off-line on this dusty track could be a disadvantage, as Jenson Button notes: “A good launch tomorrow will be very important ?ǣ both Lewis and I will be starting on the dirty side of the grid, which makes things more difficult, so we?ll need to get it right.”


The worry for McLaren is that Red Bull have looked quicker in race trim this year. Mark Webber said: “We haven?t been too strong on Saturdays until now, but we have on Sunday.

“We can have a good race from there tomorrow; tyre strategy will be very, very important ?ǣ a lot of drivers, including us, have used a lot of tyres already in qualifying.”

One driver who hasn’t used all his tyres yet is Nico Rosberg: “I think that I’m in a good position for the race for tomorrow,” he said.

“I am the only driver in the top five who has a set of new option tyres which can be very useful at this circuit. It will be very important to drive carefully, and find the right tyre management in the race, as the conditions are very tough out there.”

This gives his team mate Michael Schumacher some cause for cheer. He may be starting down in 17th but will have plenty of fresh tyres at his disposal.

As Lotus director of trackside operations Alan Permane explains, starting further back with more fresh tyres could be an advantage. His driver Kimi Raikkonen starts 11th after being knocked out in Q2:

“We knew it was a risk not running him again, but the performance penalty of not making Q3 was is not as great as it could have been due to the benefits of the fresh tyres saved for the race.

“It?s better to be starting in P11 with four new sets of tyres available for the race than further up the grid with fewer new sets.”

Keeping life in the tyres will be crucial in the punishing heat of Bahrain. In this afternoon’s GP2 race Nigel Melker had a front-left tyre de-laminate, tearing itself apart and ripping his front wing off.

Pirelli expect most front-runners to lean towards three-stop strategies.

Qualifying times in full


Q2 (vs Q1)

Q3 (vs Q2)
1Sebastian VettelRed Bull1’34.3081’33.527 (-0.781)1’32.422 (-1.105)
2Lewis HamiltonMcLaren1’34.8131’33.209 (-1.604)1’32.520 (-0.689)
3Mark WebberRed Bull1’34.0151’33.311 (-0.704)1’32.637 (-0.674)
4Jenson ButtonMcLaren1’34.7921’33.416 (-1.376)1’32.711 (-0.705)
5Nico RosbergMercedes1’34.5881’33.219 (-1.369)1’32.821 (-0.398)
6Daniel RicciardoToro Rosso1’33.9881’33.556 (-0.432)1’32.912 (-0.644)
7Romain GrosjeanLotus1’34.0411’33.246 (-0.795)1’33.008 (-0.238)
8Sergio PerezSauber1’33.8141’33.660 (-0.154)1’33.394 (-0.266)
9Fernando AlonsoFerrari1’34.7601’33.403 (-1.357)
10Paul di RestaForce India1’34.6241’33.510 (-1.114)
11Kimi RaikkonenLotus1’34.5521’33.789 (-0.763)
12Kamui KobayashiSauber1’34.1311’33.806 (-0.325)
13Nico HulkenbergForce India1’34.6011’33.807 (-0.794)
14Felipe MassaFerrari1’34.3721’33.912 (-0.460)
15Bruno SennaWilliams1’34.4661’34.017 (-0.449)
16Heikki KovalainenCaterham1’34.8521’36.132 (+1.280)
17Michael SchumacherMercedes1’34.865
18Jean-Eric VergneToro Rosso1’35.014
19Vitaly PetrovCaterham1’35.823
20Charles PicMarussia1’37.683
21Pedro de la RosaHRT1’37.883
22Pastor MaldonadoWilliams1’34.639
23Timo GlockMarussia1’37.905
24Narain KarthikeyanHRT1’38.314

One of the surprises of qualifying was Heikki Kovalainen taking Caterham into Q2. Although he was aided by Schumacher’s DRS problem, he did beat Jean-Eric Vergne on merit.

Kovalainen said: “It’s a real bonus for us getting into Q2 but we’d already seen this morning that we were close to a few cars and we thought that with the conditions today, being hot and pretty windy, we might be able to use the option tyres to get us into Q2, and it worked out.”

Another driver who impressed was Daniel Ricciardo. While his team mate went out in Q1, he reached Q3 and qualified an excellent sixth.

“We had a below average week in China with some updates we brought,” Ricciardo explained.

“We persisted with them and we made them work significantly better here, which is down to the hard work of the whole team. My communication with the team was also very good and it has helped us get into Q3.”

Sector times

DriverSector 1Sector 2Sector 3
Sebastian Vettel29.413 (2)40.003 (1)23.006 (3)
Lewis Hamilton29.474 (4)40.131 (4)22.912 (1)
Mark Webber29.405 (1)40.073 (2)23.137 (7)
Jenson Button29.532 (5)40.102 (3)23.077 (6)
Nico Rosberg29.439 (3)40.235 (6)23.147 (8)
Daniel Ricciardo29.790 (11)40.165 (5)22.957 (2)
Romain Grosjean29.540 (6)40.409 (9)23.047 (4)
Sergio Perez29.731 (7)40.374 (8)23.265 (13)
Fernando Alonso29.926 (13)40.310 (7)23.167 (9)
Paul di Resta29.750 (8)40.687 (15)23.073 (5)
Kimi Raikkonen29.834 (12)40.616 (11)23.205 (11)
Kamui Kobayashi29.782 (10)40.630 (12)23.376 (15)
Nico Hulkenberg29.770 (9)40.645 (13)23.235 (12)
Felipe Massa29.995 (15)40.510 (10)23.370 (14)
Bruno Senna29.952 (14)40.656 (14)23.409 (16)
Heikki Kovalainen30.195 (18)41.244 (18)23.413 (17)
Michael Schumacher29.999 (16)41.290 (19)23.196 (10)
Jean-Eric Vergne30.442 (20)41.129 (17)23.443 (18)
Vitaly Petrov30.366 (19)41.711 (20)23.708 (20)
Charles Pic31.040 (24)42.452 (21)24.142 (21)
Pedro de la Rosa30.991 (22)42.599 (23)24.293 (22)
Pastor Maldonado30.062 (17)41.066 (16)23.511 (19)
Timo Glock31.027 (23)42.504 (22)24.374 (24)
Narain Karthikeyan30.979 (21)42.984 (24)24.351 (23)

Timo Glock said he had a “massive mistake” at turn 13, which left him behind his team mate and Pedro de la Rosa on the grid.

Speed trap

PosDriverCarSpeed (kph/mph)Gap
1Romain GrosjeanLotus318.1 (197.7)
2Kimi RaikkonenLotus317.9 (197.5)-0.2
3Lewis HamiltonMcLaren317.2 (197.1)-0.9
4Paul di RestaForce India316.9 (196.9)-1.2
5Nico HulkenbergForce India316.7 (196.8)-1.4
6Kamui KobayashiSauber315.5 (196.0)-2.6
7Sergio PerezSauber314.9 (195.7)-3.2
8Jenson ButtonMcLaren313.4 (194.7)-4.7
9Nico RosbergMercedes313.4 (194.7)-4.7
10Michael SchumacherMercedes312.8 (194.4)-5.3
11Bruno SennaWilliams312.3 (194.1)-5.8
12Vitaly PetrovCaterham311.2 (193.4)-6.9
13Heikki KovalainenCaterham311.1 (193.3)-7.0
14Pastor MaldonadoWilliams311.1 (193.3)-7.0
15Fernando AlonsoFerrari310.7 (193.1)-7.4
16Felipe MassaFerrari310.2 (192.7)-7.9
17Jean-Eric VergneToro Rosso308.1 (191.4)-10.0
18Daniel RicciardoToro Rosso307.8 (191.3)-10.3
19Mark WebberRed Bull307.0 (190.8)-11.1
20Sebastian VettelRed Bull306.9 (190.7)-11.2
21Narain KarthikeyanHRT306.6 (190.5)-11.5
22Pedro de la RosaHRT306.4 (190.4)-11.7
23Charles PicMarussia300.6 (186.8)-17.5
24Timo GlockMarussia300.4 (186.7)-17.7

In a straight-line speed battle you have to favour the McLaren over the Red Bull – Vettel is giving away over 10kph to Hamilton.

But as we saw last year, that doesn’t necessarily mean Hamilton will have an easy time passing him.

2012 Bahrain Grand Prix

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Image ?? Red Bull/Getty images

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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73 comments on “Red Bull race pace makes Vettel strong candidate for win”

  1. Keith – historically how bad has it been, starting off line? How did the GP2 folk get along with starting on the dirty side?

    1. Gutierrez in P2 had a very good start compared to Valsecchi in P1. The same for Ceccotto. He started 4th, if I remember correctly, and he passed Nasr who started in P3.
      The dirty side doesn’t seem that bad.

      1. I think Cecotto started P5, Leimer had a bad start from 4th.

    2. Talking about GP2, the race was epic once again i guess i have really good memories from racing in Bahrain because of GP2 and also because Toyotas have been succesful there, Alonso was overtaken by Heidfeld and also made some double overtakes.

      1. @ukfanatic The race was indeed a good one, as was the second one which just finished.

        1. the 2nd race was epic.

  2. RIP 2012, you were fun for a while.

    1. Umm it’s just one quali session and the gap was a measly 0.098 seconds. I’m a Lewis fan, but I’m not getting depressed. I think he has the best chance to win tomorrow.

    2. I hate people who rain on someone else’s parade. Vettel dominated for a bit, now the field is getting bunched up. This year has been spectacular and just because Vettel’s on pole, some people want to go crybaby.

    3. Notice the tongue-in-cheek.

  3. Is the 2012 season about to go all 2011 on us?

    For fear of this, I have greeted every misfortune of Vettel so far with more enthusiasm than perhaps was nice to him (or more importantly, his fans on F1Fanatic, as the man himself may not be reading), hoping his time away from the front would be long enough to ensure a different champion in 2012.

    For tomorrow, I guess the odds are in favour of Vettel, as we haven’t seen many instances of Hamilton beating Vettel on tyre management.

    1. We’ve seen how sensitive the field order has been in 4 different tracks. Merc was far ahead in China, now they are behind.

      So I think it’s more of a 2010 repeat than 2011: different tracks and conditions being better for certain teams and not just Vettel ahead no matter what…

      1. Don’t think it was the case in 2010 either in terms of Qualifying, at this stage in 2010 we had 2 different pole-sitters, who were clearly in the fastest car at the time. Given the circumstances of Vettel & Red Bull dominating almost every single qualifying session in 2011 & what we’ve seen from this season so far, It was nice to see Seb as the 3RD different pole-sitter of the season for a change, variation in performance & results obviously does the Sport some essential good.

        As for which season 2012 replicates, i think personally it would be probably the 2005 or 2003 season, one car having an edge on the other in terms of qualifying pace whereas came the race it was a completely different story (take BAR and Button for example in 2005)

  4. It will be interesting to see if Vettel can pull out a 2-second lead on the first lap like he did last year, or whether that was some car trick. If Hamilton can remain close enough to use DRS I think he has the straight-line speed to overtake, especially as the DRS zone looks quite long. It will also be interesting to see the benefit of having new tyres. But I can’t see anything past a Red Bull-McLaren lock out of the top 4 places.

    1. ” If Hamilton can remain close enough to use DRS..”
      That is the problem. Lewis has not (in previous races) been able to close the gap when the guy in front pulls away. In fact what happens is that the gap tends to be on the increase by the 10th lap. So if Vettel makes it safely through the first corner, the race tomorrow becomes his. I am more worried about Lewis being able to maintain his second position. I pray he understands that so far he’s been doing well and that he doesn’t blow the crucial extra points he stands to gain if he finishes the race.

      1. Results when Lewis has started in P2 alongside Vettel:
        Abu Dhabi 2010 – 2nd
        Australia 2011 – 2nd
        Malaysia 2011 – 8th
        Hungary 2011 – 4th
        Belgium 2011 – DNF
        Italy 2011 – 4th
        India 2011 (qualified P2, 3 place grid penalty) – 7th
        Abu Dhabi 2011 – Won

        Hamilton has only managed to equal or better his grid position on 3 occasions & it’s valid to grow doubts whether he will make the podium given the history of starting alongside pole-sitter Vettel. Hardcore statistics & anything can happen, just like this season has proven so far but once Vettel has gone into Turn 1 leading & Lewis has had a poor start then……..

        1. Thanks for the stats. Twice has he finished 2nd and only once has he won out of 8 races. Doesn’t look good. Well it’s gonna be a long and interesting race tomorrow. Anything can happen.

        2. But all those occasions have been when Vettel in the Red Bull has had a clear race pace advantage over the McLarens.
          From experience of the first few races, Macca seems to have the best starting car, while RBR one of the worst, and their overall race pace seems less clear cut.

          1. Agree, Its totally different machine now. So it would be nteresting to watch. Can’t wait to see the race started. :)

          2. But all those occasions have been when Vettel in the Red Bull has had a clear race pace advantage over the McLarens.

            Not Malaysia 2011 and Italy 2011, where the Mclarens got stuck behind slower cars through their own fault, not Belgium 2011, where one of them qualified 13th and the other crashed and not Hungary 2011, where Mclaren were faster.

  5. Another bad day for Pirelli, another bad day for Formula One.

  6. Andy G (@toothpickbandit)
    21st April 2012, 16:39

    Don’t the top 4 also have a fresh set of options? I thought they did their first Q3 stint on their used Q2 options.

    1. Didn’t look like it on the BBC coverage.

      1. rosberg is the only one in the top 5 that has a set of brand new tires

    2. I think you are right andy, all of the others around ROS ran a used set of options for their 1st Q3 run. James Allen picked up on this also, although from Rosberg’s post qualifying comments he seems to think that because he only did the one run the others must have used a new set on their 1st run, which im 99.99999% sure they didn’t…

      1. BUT used 2 new sets in Q3 according to the McLaren pitwall.

  7. Should be another cracking race tomorrow. So many drivers in the fight this year – fantastic stuff! Watch out for Romain Grosjean tomorrow. He looks like he’s out to prove something.

    By the way, I just watched last week’s race again and I take back what I said about Hamilton looking second to Button. Both drivers look very strong with Hamilton stronger in qualifying, as usual, and Button as fast but probably kinder on his tyres in races, although Hamilton seems to have closed the gap there too. At this point in the season (too early of course) you’d bet on McLaren winning the Constructor’s trophy.

    There’s going to be so much rubber on that track tomorrow after the first third of the race, it’s going to look like 24 Moses crossing the Red Black Sea together.

  8. THe Pirellis don’t rubber the track well as the bridgestones

  9. well im afraid that vettel could repeat a dominant 2011 victory. I base this comment on the top speed of ham, by the looks of it he has a pretty agressive set up(less wing compared to but) so I think his tyres could be dead fast.

    1. Swings and roundabouts. When you set your car up for top speed that’s a race tactic generally, not about optimising the 1 lap speed.

    2. I guess they figured they eventually have to fight traffic after their pit stops so they need straight line speed to overtake midfielders…should be interesting!

  10. Raikkonen for Podium.. :P

  11. Some of you write about last years race but you don’t mean Bahrain I guess since it was cancelled? I hope Hamilton beat finger-boy to the first corner!

    1. Anyone will do… but F……B..

  12. 2011? You’ve got to be kidding, right? There were two McLaren 1-2s in qualifying for the first two events of this year, and yet I don’t recall anyone crying out ‘Are we back in the 1992?’. Vettel has done a great lap and got his hard-fought pole, but McLaren has a car to beat this season, so he will have to pull something special out of the bag to convert his position to win. Still, it’s funny how some people fear him – only a week ago he was ‘rubbish’ missing the Q3, and now, after a pole, the same people are really scared that he will dominate this season in the inferior RB8.

    1. You mean “back to 1988”,i suppose??? …and yes,its very sad to see a double world champion not getting his due here…had either of hamilton or button waltzed away to victory at each of the first 3 races,im sure no one would have complained…am alarmed at all this hatred of vettel. Give the guy a break!!!!

    2. I agree.
      The guy is well down the championship table, so far he has been trounced by his team mate in qualifying and hasn’t really been that good in the races either, although his drive in Melbourne was superb, it was hardly fantastic.
      If anyone is looking dominant this year it is McLaren, I think it will make the season a lot more exciting if the McLaren’s can’t run away with it from front row like they did in Australia.

  13. The one thing that can give us some hope that this won’t be another bore-rain is that so far only one pole sitter has won a race this season. McLaren did alot of long run work and seemed to also find pace overnight into saturday. That Mercedes could have gone faster in qualifying, there are a few potential victors!

  14. So basicly, we have got a boring circuit, not good for overtaken, plus a red bull plus Vettel on pole….oh yeah I can’t wait to watch a 58 odd lap race, Vettel prossesion. Urgh, just when I thought, we got away from Seb and Christian Horner, talking to the F1 coverage 24/7, I was starting to like the mix of team principals/drivers! But I guess all good things must come to an end! I really hold no hope for Hamilton, getting passed, it is simply going to be a Vettel win, whilst his team mate probably goes backwords at the start, as per usual!

    1. Last week race had little fight for P1 as Rosberg did a Vettel, but the race was still hard-fought for all the other positions and load of people were excited with the result. True that we can have a repetition of that tomorrow, the difference being Vettel leading the pack, but will that immediately brand the race as a boring Vettel procession?
      Sure that he has done it a lot in the past, so it is nothing new, but I won’t discard a race just because Vettel gets away with it (even if it happens)!

    2. Bahrain TRACK going to be Boraing race even with the DRS it is not going to be easy to pass amongst the top 3 teams if anyone managed to get away at the start!, e.g fingerboy, the second car is going to hold up the rest of the field for a few laps then you know what happen… (a run away). it would be great to see top 6 cars can stay close at least the first few laps until DRS activation are allow. well it just my prediction! hate to see just one car run away!!! most boring thing to see…

  15. i just saw the Q3 becuase i fall asleep, really impress me the Red Bull’s, more Vettel because in Australia and Malaysia struggle with the car.
    in a moment believe Webber had the pole, Rosberg too. but Vettel impressed with that pole maybe can get the win or maybe not.

  16. Finally! The People’s Champ has come back to Formula 1!

    1. See! Germans do have a sense of humour.

  17. As a an of F1 since 1976 I find it hard to get interested in the results of qualifying for the first time in my life. The Bahrain GP 2012 should be forgotten. No on should die for a sport we love. Don’t watch, send a message for human rights.

    1. MW, have you watched all of the South African GPs between 76 and 85?
      It’s not the first comment I see here on this site about this being the first time someone will not watch a GP since the 70’s or 80’s and it makes me wonder about the South African GP during the apartheid.
      I don’t want to be cynical, but as far as I know no one died for the sake of F1. Last year there was no GP and there were still deaths and injuries inflicted to the people protesting!
      I even have to say that the fact F1 is in Bahrain brings a new level of media focus to the country situation, because for some months, the international media had forgotten about it and moved on to other hot topics. Now that F1 is there, some people are realizing that there are still issues in Bahrain for more than 1 year now!
      Had not been for F1 and a lot of people would not be talking about Bahrain these days.

    2. I just want to clarify that with my previous comment I don’t mean that the F1 GP is actually good for the all Bahrain situation. Of course is not, it is adding fuel to the fire, but I have no doubts that F1 coming here brought again attention to what is going on, and to some degree it is a good thing that the world eyes are set on the cruel way the people are still treated by the regime there, abeit a lot of promises of change announced last year.

    3. For a time I was considering not wathcing this race on account of the human rights issue there but let’s not kidd ourselves; if we cared that much for human rights we wouldn’t watch the sport at all considering the murder of millions of babies per year is considered a human right in about ALL of the countries formula one is held in. If the voice of more than 40 million tiny defenceless human beings can be ignored year after year with no protest, so can the voice of one million Bahrainee adults.

  18. Lewis WILL emerge victorious,if not tomorow(with the massivelely increased competition)Then,defianately/triumphantly @ season`s end,to take what has almost been his,since first getting his name inscribed on it.

  19. Lewis is saying about challenging Seb into turn 1, could be a bit like Korea with the straight after the first couple of corners with slipstream + KERS

  20. Meanwhile, last Monday at Torro Rosso ; Helmut Marco :” Just thought I’d let you know that the Red Bull guys have some old bodywork that they won’t be using again, maybe you could do something with it.”

  21. There were several times last year when we expected degradation to be very high, and then it turned out that it actually wasnt that bad…To be honest I think we are in for a 3 stop strategy race easily, but still, lets see what happens. Some cars seem to work better on the harder compounds, they might just do a few laps on the soft, get rid of them and do the rest of the race on mediums, similar to what some tried to pull last week in china. who knows? the track did improve a lot through the sessions. hopefully we will see different strategies by different teams, again. difficult to call

  22. Calling it now, if Vettel dominates in 2011-like fashion, people will be like “OH, HE WASN’T THE BEST ON THE TRACK, ALL HE DID WAS RUN AWAY WITH IT FROM POLE” and conveniently forget about Rosberg in the process…

    1. Everyone loved China because it was Rosberg’s first win. Similarly, everyone loved Monza 2008, as it was Vettel’s first win. Nobody really acknowledged that both of them easily won pole-to-flag. We loved it because we had a new winner, something fresh.

      Nowadays, we hate it when Vettel is on pole, and we hate it when he wins. The reason behind that is because we’re all tired of Vettel. Simple as that. We’re all sick and tired of Vettel and him constantly winning. He’s been shoved down our throats for the past 2 years, and we’re sick and tired of him. In 2011, almost every single race weekend was the same crap. Vettel pole! Vettel win! Vettel has became the John Cena of Formula One. He keeps winning, and the vast majority of fans hate him because of it.

      1. The first paragraph is good, but that second paragraph says more about the jealousy of those fans than the man doing the winning.

        1. Nothing to do with jealousy. I’m simply stating the truth – nobody is enthusiastic about Vettel being on pole, because we know how the race always turns out to be.

          Vettel is a good driver though, no doubt; but he simply wins too often. Remember Schumacher in 2004? Well, that was Vettel in 2011. He simply wins too often.

          I don’t mind Vettel winning races, as long as he has to fight for it. Sadly, 90% of the time that’s simply not what happens.

          I don’t “hate” Vettel, I’m simply bored of him.

          1. Well, provided the car and the close grid this year, I won’t expect him to be as dominant as last year. And his races so far weren’t so good this year also. Mclaren and Mercedes have very good cars this season and also don’t forget Webber! Webber is in very good shape and will post a challenge to him. Combine all thse, I think Vettel will have to fight for the win.

      2. Anyone would think Formula One was about winning….

      3. Speak for yourself, which I’m sure you’re doing. I like the boy. I enjoyed golf when Tiger was winning everything he was in. I have no problem watching the worlds best and potentially starting a golden age.

      4. Don’t mind whoever win just not too many of those bloody finger pointing in your face every bloody race!!! that would be good…

      5. @kingshark Speak for yourself! Some of us enjoyed Vettel’s domination last year. We should take pleasure in watching a driver so comfortable and confident in his car. It was only one season, you’re not exactly talking Schumacher style dominance here.

  23. With LHs time being so close SVs it seems highly unlikely that SV will be able to open a 1 second + gap in the first two laps and with an extra 10Kph I expect Hamilton to be leading on lap 3, then it’s all up to tyre wear and pitstops, Hamilton should use his tyres up faster than Vettel but if Hamilton pits first his outlap should be faster than Vettels inlap, interesting. Webber and Jenson? Jenson is running more downforce than Lewis but still has more than 6kph over Webber on the straight so it would seem to come down the first corner position and we all know how that is going to go so the questions are, can Lewis keep it together all race long, can Vettel hold of Button for 2nd., can Webber amaze us again with a thrilling fight back from 7-11th. to get on the podium, and finally, who is going to be the Joker in the pack to upset the natural order. I think it is a little early to writing the season of, after all “1 finger does not a summer make”

    1. -to BE writing-

  24. I think Grosjean deserves a mention..
    Great qualy effort…….

    1. and Ricciardo, too many possible spoilers to list them all.

  25. I was enjoying a season without the finger.

    Now Webber winning Bahrain, THAT is something I would like to see!

    1. “Webber gets a perfect start, Vettel leaves his braking too late ,runs wide, hits Lewis gets a puncture and goes off, Lewis spins in front of Jenson, cars going off in all directions, Webber in front with a massive lead” yere right dream on.

    2. ALL FOR THAT! much prefer he uses up his nose!!!

    3. @rpiian – Sorry mate ;)

  26. Looking forward to the race. Happy to see anyone else win but fingerboy! Go Webber

  27. Last year I think we all grew accustomed to Vettel pulling out enough of a gap to negate any chasing drivers DRS. This year, I’m not so sure if he can do it. That Red Bull is mighty slow in a straight line, which of course it was last year, but given how the EBD restriction hit Vettel in the last race I don’t see how he will be able to do it so easily. That said, it means that Hamilton still has to get passed regardless.

    I just hope we have a clean couple of opening laps so we can see how things pan out between Hamilton and Vettel.

    Surprised by Mercedes lack of straight line speed through the speed trap. I swear they were less than 2kph out yesterday, a change in strategy? Didn’t seem to work out too well for Rosberg in qualifying. I just hope that their tyres can cope with any additional downforce that might be thrown at them.

    I’m looking forward to Schumacher and Maldonado. Two attacking drivers right at the back ought to make for a great challenge up the field.

    1. @andrewtanner, you’r right on both counts Andrew, the Maclarens are equal to or better than the Bulls this year, and Merc are using the double DRS to add extra wing rather than going for top speed, although if they can I wouldn’t be surprised if they reduced wing on Schuis car to give him a better chance to pass the mid-field in the DRS zone, don’t think they can do it without him starting from the pits though. Actually the extra downforce is good for the tyres, less slip equals lower temps.

      1. @hohum Perhaps they can’t with Schumacher due to Parc Ferme. I imagine with qualifying badly and changing his gearbox they would have made changes and started from the pit lane if they could, so maybe they can’t change that in Parc Ferme?

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