- Qualifying: Hulkenberg (8th) Barrichello (10th)
- Race: Hulkenberg (7th) Barrichello (10th)
A strong weekend for the Williams team, who must be delighted that their efforts in qualifying are now being rewarded in the race; no more is it inevitable that both drivers slip backwards from their starting grid slots.
Hulkenberg (or Young Nico as we at Badger like to call him) absolutely nailed it in qualifying, beating Barrichello and setting exactly the same time as Nico Rosberg in seventh. What’s even better is that he was able to keep up that form in the race – losing a place off the start but making back two during the first chicane. In the latter part of the race he was involved in a ding dong battle with Mark Webber. Well, we say ding dong, but what we really mean is Hulkenberg displaying scant regard for the spirit of the rules by consistently cutting chicanes. Even though Webber got through in the end, is the young German finally coming good and developing a ruthless streak?
Barrichello, by contrast, wasn’t able to set his car up to his liking during qualifying and then got stuck behind Buemi during the race. There’s not much else to say about the veteran Brazilian in all honesty, except that he looks old now. Old.
Badger’s best: Hulkenberg
- Qualifying: Kubica (9th) Petrov (15th, but started 20th with five place grid drop)
- Race: Kubica (8th) Petrov (13th)
Another race, another occasion on which Kubica was able to beat Petrov.
Kubica, after qualifying slightly below what he felt was his best time, was able to run fifth on the road after the start. From then on, he dropped back, being swallowed up by Hulkenberg and Webber after a slow pit stop. Given his past performances this season it’s easy to expect him to massively out-drive the car on every occasion. It just so happens that on this occasion, the car simply wasn’t good enough to allow him to mix it with the big boys.
Petrov endured another weekend of mediocrity – after blocking Glock in qualifying and taking a five place drop from fifteenth, it wasn’t realistic to expect any great shakes. That said, he’s still offering up the line that “I think I did the maximum I could have hoped for this afternoon, but it was my first time here in Formula 1 and this weekend was all part of my learning curve. Hopefully, when I come here next year I won’t need to learn anything; I’ll just be able to show my best level of performance.” Optimism, that’s what it’s all about Vitaly, optimism.
Badger’s best: Kubica
- Qualifying: Buemi (14th) Alguersuari (16th)
- Race: Buemi (11th) Alguersuari (15th)
Middling. Mediocre. So-so. All words to describe Toro Rosso. They’re not that good, but they’re ok.
It’s difficult to find anything to write about in all honesty – Buemi was quicker than Alguersuari in both qualifying and the race. Alguersuari was mystified by his drive-through penalty. Buemi thinks they should be more competitive in Singapore. Same old, same old. Can any of our readers help us out?
If not, then it’s very much a case of move along, nothing else to see here…
Badger’s best: Buemi
- Qualifying: Sutil (11th) Liuzzi (20th)
- Race: Liuzzi (12th) Sutil (16th)
A weekend of two halves for the Force India drivers.
Sutil’s performance in qualifying, while not spectacular, did at least get him into the best position outside the top 10, giving him a new set of tyres and the clean side of the grid. Sadly, from then on it all fell apart. Pushed wide on the first lap into the gravel and forced to pit early and trail around at the back meant that it was never going to be a great race for him. Still, there’s a chance he might find himself at Renault next season, which just goes to show that, overall, things haven’t gone too badly.
Liuzzi, by contrast, found himself up slack alley in qualifying, having had a recurring problem from the third practice session. However, come race day he turned it around to finish twelfth. Yes, not in the points, but not too bad. It’s just a shame he got stuck behind Buemi and Barrichello, otherwise he would have been on for a point. Still not enough to justify keeping him on next season though. He’s had his chance. Get rid.
Badger’s best: Liuzzi
See Part One here…