As Mercedes leapt to a fantastic victory, lets review how their rivals performed in the Chinese Grand prix held on Sunday.
A brilliant start by both the drivers coupled with some excellent overtaking made this possible.
At the start of the race, Button was chasing Schumacher and was being chased by Kimi Raikonnen. But shortly afterwards, Button entered the pits to change his tires.
When he came back, the competition had died as Schumi had retired and Kimi fell back to a different strategy.
Hamilton on the other hand had to push throughout the race to stay ahead of his rivals. At the start, he competed with Kimi, Perez, Webber and Alonso. When he was out of the pits, he had to overtake a number of mid-runners to ensure that he stayed ahead of Mark and Vettel at the end of the race. Surprisingly, all his overtaking moves were clean and this helped him grab third place.
Red Bull racing Team:
If there was one team that made excellent calls on when to pit and followed a brilliant pit-stop strategy, it is Red bull.
Their team principals understand their cars very well and know when to call their drivers for refueling and how to gain advantage over others.
An example of this is the early pit stops made by Mark Webber, which allowed the Australian to stay ahead of Alonso and the Williams. However, his car was not good to challenge the McLaren’s, else he could have easily finished second.
At the start, he fell back to 14th place and struggled to overtake Force India drivers. But later, his perfect timing at the pits, helped him regain his position and his second pit stop was also perfectly timed to gain advantage over other drivers.
According to the Chinese calendar, 2012 is the year of dragon and the horse is never compatible with the dragon.
This proved true as the Prancing horse suffered in the practice, in the qualifying and suffered in the race as well and could not finish any higher than ninth.
The initial phase of the race was fruitful to Ferrari as Alonso overtook Webber and was challenging Hamilton, but they visited the pits much earlier than him and that was the turning point of the race. Ferrari failed to capitalise on Alonso’s potential.
Even at the end, Alonso failed to overtake Maldonado whereas Hamilton overtook all the midfield-runners to finish third.
The cars are slower than their rivals by a whole second, and their exhausts must be blamed for their car’s pace. Also, they still haven’t solved the issues of tire degradation and the car delivers only in a narrow constriction of conditions.
The next race at Bahrain might be worse because of the hot track conditions. The nightmares for Massa still continue as he failed to score points. Again.
Except the last three teams on the grid; every other driver has scored points in this season. With their current form, it is unlikely that the Maranello based team can finish in top five of the Constructors Standings.
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Published with permission from Myf1eye.