Sunday, 22 July 2012

Germany: post-race analysis

Well, that was a tremendously exciting race from start to finish (and beyond) and it even turned out to be profitable. I tipped Perez to be top 6 (he was 6th) at 4 with Ladbrokes, no hedge, but he slipped to 5.9 after getting a five place grid penalty and starting in seventeenth position.

The start was exciting but rather hard to follow on the radio. Numerous cars had problems (Hamilton got a puncture and numerous others parted ways with the circuit) but nobody retired. The top few cars stayed in formation and Hamilton limped a long way back to the pits.

Perez, happily, was having a very nice time of things, and was soon up to about 12th, and Button was also having a better performance than has recently been the case. Webber seemed strangely off the pace. He wasn't going backwards, he was just stuck and unable to really make much progress.

The Force Indias, having had a great qualifying, then drifted inexorably backwards and in the end Hulkenberg just got into the points in 9th and di Resta just missed out in 11th. Rosberg had a pretty good race to finish 10th having started very near the back, and Schumacher came 7th, (better tyre wear might have seen him hold 5th, as he pitted late on).

At the sharp end Button was picking off those ahead of him one by one until he was third and closing with Alonso and Vettel, who were very close. After the final pit stops Button was just ahead of Vettel and challenged the Spaniard for the lead but he just couldn't get ahead of Alonso. Then Alonso pulled a small gap and Vettel closed up to Button. Very near the end of the race Vettel passed Button, but he was off the track when he did so and it may well be investigated and penalised by the stewards (we'll see if he gets a penalty, unlike the engine mapping shenanigans of Red Bull which went unpunished).

Raikkonen got a solid but unspectacular 4th and Sauber will be delighted with an impressive 5th and 6th, which is especially good as their drivers started about 12th and 17th. If they could sort out qualifying they might be in a position to contend for more podiums.

Massa came a lowly 12th, and Grosjean was only 18th. Hamilton was the sole retirement due to a reliability failing quite late on. It was a pretty rubbish way for a 100th Grand Prix to go.

In the dry the McLaren was perhaps the fastest car of them all, and if not it was not far off. The Saubers were also pretty tasty. Force India were clearly helped by rain in qualifying, and are less competitive in the dry.

Before the race began Red Bull were being investigated for possibly illegal engine mapping. The FIA apparently called the mapping illegal but stated that the rules were too unclear and so the team got no penalty.

The contentious nature of Vettel's late overtake will probably be investigated, and we'll see what happens (or not).

The good news for McLaren is that, in the dry, their car is now very sharp. The bad news is that reliability in the race and rain in qualifying cost them this time and there's just one more race before a prolonged break.

The Perez tip was probably half down to good judgement and half down to luck. I never would've backed him (even at 5.9) to be top 6 from 17th on the grid. Really quite pleased with how this weekend's gone, both in terms of entertainment and betting.

Hungary is just next weekend, but I will be writing a mid-season review part 1 (looking especially at what's happened so far and the betting aspect of things) during the week [assuming I can actually sort out my records, which have suddenly grown a strange discrepancy]. After Hungary, during a long break, I'll write part 2 of the review, with an eye on the last nine races of the season.

From Hungary onwards I'll be adding 'green line' tips to my records, with such tips being the ones offered by my esteemed commenters.

Morris Dancer


Morris Dancer said...

Vettel got a 20s penalty which puts him down to 5th. Maldonado got the same penalty for ending Hamilton's race in Valencia.

Nigel said...

The penalty was fair, I think. Had it happened earlier in the race, it would require a drive through, and 20 sec is the equivalent.

Pretty hard for Red Bull to complain about the letter of the rules - which Vettel undoubtedly transgressed - when they relied on the letter of the rules to get away with their half-throttle-blowing engine map.

Having decided to chicken out of betting on this race completely, I then watch all your tips come good....


Morris Dancer said...

Ah ha!

I have *you* to thank for Perez miraculously making the leap from 17th to 6th!

[I know the feeling, having often ignored Mr. Smithson's long shot tips only to see them pay off].

If Vettel's penalty was fair then Maldonado's was lenient. I'm a bit surprised finished so far back (15th).

Nigel said...

"then Maldonado's was lenient"

Some even might say unduly so.

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