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Sunday, 17 April 2011

Hamilton Wins!

Lewis Hamilton will now feel more content with his current team.  In winning the Chinese Grand Prix the dominance of Red Bull has been broken.

It was Jenson Button who went to the Red Bull team - albeit temporarily.  He pitted for a tyre change but parked his car in the Red Bull bay before realising he need to drive forward to the next garage.  He lost his lead by this error and could manage no better than fourth.

Mark Webber went out in 'quali 1' and ended 18th on the grid but fought up to third place behind his team mate Vettel.

A great drive by Hamilton who was understandably very emotional immediately after his win.




Lewis Hamilton Leaving?

When a sports star starts to slip behind his peers he generally looks for a move.

For example, a football player who is replaced in the first team by a colleague whether taken off the field prematurely, or used a substitute only.

Left alone, feelings of neglect are often easily dissipated by being back in the first choice line up again in a team sport or another win in an individual one.  However in these days of ever more professional management, a need is cultivated to be first, visible, winning.  Sponsors need to be appeased and brand links require prominence and media exposure.

It is in this environment that Manchester United players leave for Real Madrid and F1 drivers move to other teams.

One of Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp's strengths is noted to be making his players feel wanted, important, even when they don't make the first team starting line up.  Other managers make it clear that the team is the thing and individuals need to fit in to whatever suits the team's best interests.

So when celebrity management moves into sport, the concept of 'the joy of taking part' and being loyal to the team comes into conflict with the need to promote the individual.

It is in this context that sportsmen say there is no interest in being with a team for life.  Exceptions like Ryan Giggs are rare.  Transfers make headlines and money for management and the individual.  He needs to be publicised as a winner.

That is why Lewis Hamilton will find it hard to tolerate being led by his team mate in the last race or being behind him on the grid in China.  A move may become inevitable if the season continues in this way.

Monday, 11 April 2011

Massa Beats Alonso

Team hierarchy is starting to take shape...

Felipe Massa beat his team mate Fernando Alonso in Malaysia.
Jenson Button beat this team mate Lewis Hamilton.
Sebastian Vettel beat Mark Webber and won the race.
Renault's Nick Heidfeld beat Vitaly Petrov.
Schumacher beat Rosberg.

This of course is not consistent with the race results in Australia.  However, the result was influenced by uncharacteristic mistakes and unforeseen issues.  Alonso collided with the back of Hamilton's McLaren; Hamilton was given a retrospective time penalty for weaving;  Webber lost use of his KERS system but Vettel had his second victory sewn up anyway and retained his 100% points record this year.

A very entertaining battle took place between Schumacher and Kobayashi, with Kobayashi showing what a fighter he is and coming in ultimately two places ahead in seventh.

Button's second place gave him great encouragement and he was visibly delighted after the race, talking up this season as having championship potential for him.

Webber had the consolation of fastest lap and fourth place.  Heidfeld brought Renault their second podium of 2011 with third place.  After his own third in Australia, this time out Petrov broke his steering mount by attempting a vault over the kerb from the grassy side.  Massa may have eased the tension over his place at Ferrari by his fifth place result.  Alonso managed sixth with his new nose and Hamilton was demoted to eighth.

Schumacher slipped into the top ten with 9th and rookie Paul di Resta brought his Force India home in 10th - his second finish in the points and one place ahead of his team mate.



Wednesday, 6 April 2011

Lewis Looking for Fuller Future

Interesting take on the Lewis Hamilton story on newsldn.com.
Some sources have him on his way out of his boyhood team...

Well, the ultra-quick Kimi Raikkonen was going to drive Nascar trucks so anything can happen.
Who knows what goes on in a world class driver's mind?

Jenson Button has stated that for Lewis to leave would be a bad idea.  These two close friends may therefore have at least discussed the possibilities.

Meanwhile we head on to Sepang this weekend.

McLaren and Red Bull are expecting Ferrari and Mercedes GP to be more competitive this weekend.

The weather will play a big part so Pirelli tyre choice and pit stop timings will be a major factor again.

With Jenson Button looking the more settled of the two McLaren drivers, his smooth style may prove decisive.