In part two of our Singapore Grand Prix hot-or-not we’re looking at the midfield pack, better known by Badger as the Chasing Dogs.
- Qualifying: Rosberg(7th) Schumacher(8th)
- Race: Rosberg (7th) Schumacher (DNF)
Singapore was never going to be Mercedes’ best race of 2011 so an end result of six points and Michael Schumacher still being in once piece isn’t all that bad.
Nico Rosberg did his job in qualy and ran well enough throughout the race. Highlight-wise we enjoyed his little scuffle with Sergio Perez, not least his mad weave across the track to re-pass the Mexican. There’s little else to say – seventh was as much as the car could manage and that’s where Nico ended up. Frustrating times as Mercedes seem to continue their treading of water just outside the top-three teams, but then it could be worse (see Renault).
On to Michael, who also did a solid job in qualy. He was doing okay in the race too until a misjudged attack on Perez quite literally brought him down to earth with a bump after his back-to-back strong performances in Belgium and Italy. The German looked set for a decent run prior to that though ultimately the best he was looking at was P8, behind Rosberg. Then again that would have been much better than looking at a Sauber rear-wing, the night sky and then a wall in frighteningly quick succession.
Badger’s Best: Rosberg
- Qualifying: Perez (11th) Kobayashi(17th)
- Race: Perez (10th) Kobayashi (14th)
They picked up a point, but Singapore was largely a continuation of Sauber’s poor recent form.
Life ain’t great for Kamui Kobayashi. He’s scored just two points in the last seven races (having taken 25 in the opening seven) and has seen rookie team-mate Sergio Perez establish himself as the team’s superior qualifier. Sergio has also out-scored Kamui over the second half of the season and there haven’t been quite as many eye-catching passes of late. Worrying.
The Japanese driver’s woes were compounded when he ramped over the Singapore kerbs and into the wall during qualy, leaving him 17th on the grid. From there he had a scruffy race which included a drive-through for ignoring blue flags.
It was a better, albeit not perfect, race for Perez, who got to the flag despite Michael Schumacher’s attempts to use him as a ramp (what is it with Sauber drivers and ramps?). Perhaps more impressively, Sergio out-qualified Kobayashi for the ninth time this season and only just missed out on the top ten. He ran a two-stop race which resulted in a very worn set of Pirelli’s by the end, leaving him pretty chuffed to bag the top-ten spot. Improving.
Badger’s Best: Perez
- Qualifying: Barrichello (12th) Maldonado (13th)
- Race: Maldonado (11th) Barrichello (13th)
Who? Oh, Williams. Sorry, it’s just become so easy to forget they’re on the grid this season.
On the plus side the Grove-based team got both cars to the flag in decent positions at Marina Bay (Maldonado 11th and Barrichello 13th) and could be about to sign a former world champion for 2012. On a more negative note their efforts in Singapore brought no points and that ex-world champ isn’t renowned for busting a gut when his car isn’t capable of much.
It says it all that their longest stint on the TV screen was when Jenson Button was lapping them. Qualy was decent but as ever they went backwards during the race, which basically sums up their season. A sad, sad state of affairs. Can Renault engines and a former world champion really put it right?
Badger’s Best: Maldonado
- Qualifying: Buemi (14) Alguersuari (16th)
- Race: Buemi (12th) Alguersuari (DNF)
Toro Rosso’s attempts to hunt down Sauber for seventh in the constructors’ standings hit something of a wall in Singapore, largely due to their drivers literally doing just that. Buemi binned it in practice, setting him back for the entire weekend, whilst Alguersuari got weirdly cozy with the barriers late in the race.
Seb enjoyed the better qualifying but largely went nowhere in the race. Frustrated by a lack of downforce, he pootled round and finish 12th, splitting the Williams cars but making little further impression on the grand prix.
Jaime meanwhile took a drive-through for contact with Trulli’s Lotus and then clouted the barriers in the final few laps. In fairness he was probably a bit tired (he’s only young, bless) and thinking about his recently-released album.
Badger’s Best: Buemi
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