Wednesday, 26 September 2012

Singapore GP - "You beauty've won the Singapore Grand Prix again"


The Pitstop Princess is delighted to welcome you to the first Guest Post.  Asda Equivalent Energy Drink Racing was delegated the responsibility of reporting and charting the Singapore GP.

Singapore, the new Monaco; Singapore, the Monaco of the future; Singapore, the Monaco of the East....... Let’s be honest though, folks, on track it’s usually a better circuit for the viewer than it’s Mediterranean idol.
Sky have been chomping at the bit for this race, having used it in their promos for the past 10 months. However, I watched it on BBC – it was a buy-off between BBC’s painful opening skits (Dragon boats? Really?) and Sky punctuating their elongated build-up with ‘tributes to drivers who die in horrible ways’ features. Plus it’s always fun watching drivers flirt with Lee McKenzie, especially when they’re testing the new F1 video game, which is now on the Xmas present list [AEEDR has sufficient sports video games, please do not feed the animal. - Ed].

Qually had the now regular not-so-shocking “shocks” - Kimi struggling, Massa not turning up - but Q3 was overall painfully dull. Aside from Pastor’s “shock” in getting to the front row AND staying there (he’s usually got a grid penalty in the bag), and Grosjean (AKA Beaker from the Muppets) trying to kill himself, the only other point of interest was when I sat on the remote and ended up viewing a “to upgrade to this channel” screen. It was more enjoyable than watching cars sitting in the garages.
Amazingly, the race itself started without major incident (I’m assuming a Caterham team collision isn’t classed as major) and the incessant safety car predictions commenced. After that, the common problem with street circuits - that they’re too slow overall to produce good racing, reliant on DRS (diminished reality system) and pitting to produce changes in order - came to the forefront. By lap 20 or so, both myself and Fernando Alonso were wishing Nelson Pique Jr. was still in F1 to mix up this race. Where Monza two weeks ago flew in, this one was dragging early on.

McLaren’s tactic of providing one of their drivers with a faulty car lead to the first real moment of note, costing Hamilton a lead that only Vettel looked like taking.  As the race reached the halfway point, Fernando and Pastor lit things up with some brilliant wheel-to-wheel racing... But the pointless Karthikeyan, his HRT and the subsequent safety car (who had lap 33?) put pay to that. That said, Pastor driving while being told his car was gubbed and Button trying to dink Vettel did add something to the ten minute procession.
The safety car interlude was clearly enjoyed by Mr Schumacher alot, as he got it back out within 30 seconds of the restart by rear-ending  Vergne. One wonders why Schumi didn’t get a race ban, since that crash was even more reckless than Grosjean’s in Spa and he also mounted a car in Barca this year.

On re-restart, Massa and Senna took over from their more illustrious teammates in providing some drama. Filipe’s form is slowly improving and at this rate he’ll have a drive next year. Obviously, not with Ferrari. In other news, we found out that team orders are in use at Lotus, though the team waited until after some aggressive racing to tell the drivers.
Once it was announced Old Father Time (Bernie?) would bring this race to an unnatural end, some thrilling, if messy, midfield battling ensued. However, no main challenger changes occurred and Vettel walked away with an anticlimactic win. Following the rarely seen countdown clock, the obligatory excuses, bitching and team move rumours followed...

When all is said and done, Sky’s marketing dept were right that cars do look pretty under the lights.
Chart of Lust
1. (new entry) Sparks flying under the cars – Gets the pulse rate going
2. (new entry) Flashing lights on Vettel's helmet - It’s nice that he let the Girl Guides decorate it [Girl Guides prefer a copious spread of sparkly stickers - Ed.]
3. (new entry) Williams v Ferrari – Provided the best wheel-to-wheel in ages
4. (new race) Night race – Purely because I hate getting up early for the other Asian races
5. (ne entry) Fireworks – Makes every race win feel like the Superbowl and Wrestlemania

Chart of Loathing
1. (Re-entry) Cool vests  - Honestly, man up! If I have to work in a stuffy office because old women need the heating jacked up then you can sit in a car and live with being a wee bit clammy, Jenson!
2. (new entry) Jake going to BT – I like him, he’s non-threatening and relatable... [Am seriously considering how things stand between us - Ed.]
3. (new entry) Slow corners – Doesn’t make for good racing
4. (new entry) Back marker passing under safety car – Takes too long and fighting through back markers makes for an added twist
5. (new entry) Blisters on the bum – Some vulgar filler-chat from DC

Singpore GP - Results

1. Beauty & the F1 Geek - 729
2. The Pitstop Princess - 724
3. Wyld Stallyns - 708
4. La Pic di Resta - 676
5. Still Chewing - 666
6. White Jeans - 663
7. Better the Vettel you know - 640
9. Sebastian Vettel's High Flying Turds - 599
10. Crash of the Titans - 580
11. Push Pete's Button - 576
12. Ferrari Fanatic - 571
13. Hippy F1 - 545
14. Parke's Winners - 543
15. Put the Vettel on (push the Button) - 536
16. Asda Equivalent Energy Drink Racing - 510
17. The Lord of the Wings - 504

Sunday, 9 September 2012

Italian GP - "So grateful for this opportunity"

Firstly, if anyone has suggestions what the tally marks signify on Vettel's helmet, please post below.  My ideas are number of how many races since he won or how long until he can approach Whitmarsh for Hamilton's vacant seat.

This was a race with lots of twists and turns.  I can't remember when there were so many DNFs due to break-downs.  Some drivers did avoid misadventure though.  Senna started off with many adventures but came out in the points.  Massa had a brilliant start but was a sitting duck to Alonso's onslaught ("He should get the DRS.")  Button must have been gutted to park the car ("No drive.  No drive.  No drive.").  Horner stated that this circuit "doesn't flatter their package", however their package was certainly lacking.  They really need to fix that alternator and Webber's spin and later retirement was the straw that broke the camel's back.

Lastly, a word for those who don't get so much press.  Perez is my man of the match, Maldonado made up the most places from his grid start (having had "no more trips to the stewards" written on his helmet), Senna ended in the points even though Mercedes engines were supposed to have the advantage and Rosberg scored the fastest lap.

Italian GP - Charts

Chart of Lust

1. (new entry) Perez - what a hero
2. (new entry) Massa's start - never has a good start been more needed

Chart of Loathing

1. (new entry) Adverts - specifically Alonso for Ferrari aftershave and Vettel for Infinity.  An honourable mention for McLaren's Tooned
2. (new entry) Nicky Lauder's belly
3. (up 2) Facial furniture - perhaps Gillette could sponsor Hamilton, for the good of everyone

Italian GP Results

1. Beauty & the F1 Geek - 683
2. The Pitstop Princess - 675
3. Wyd Stallyns - 659
4. Still Chewing - 623
5. La Pic di Resta - 621
6. White Jeans - 618
7. Better the Vettel you know - 588
9. Sebastian Vettel's High-Flying Turds - 554
10. Ferrari Fanatic - 552
11. Crash of the Titans - 542
12. Push Pete's Button - 538
13. Parkes Winners - 494
14. Hippy F1 - 488
15. Put the Vettel on (push the Button) - 481
16. Asda Equivalent Energy Drink Racing - 462
17. The Lord of the Wings - 447

Thursday, 6 September 2012

Belgian GP - "..."

How the mighty have fallen.  Vettel didn't make Q3...again.  Ross Brawn's poor tactical decisions meant Rosberg also qualified poorly.  Sauber went from hero to zero in a matter of laps.

A fairly good race, Button sitting out front where he is most comfortable and some overtaking behind him.  It's just a shame that every time someone pulled out a great move, they lost it in the DRS zone.  Time for a rethink I think.

Apologies for the delay in getting these published.  Must to better.

Belgian GP - Charts

Chart of Lust

1. (up 1) Senna - for completing the fastest lap of the race in a Williams
2. (re-entry) Lucky pink shirt - strikes again
3. (new entry) Gaffs - Bernie announces Schumi's second retirement and Hamilton tweets his telemetry

Chart of Loathing

1. (new entry) Accidents - terrifying and also ended Alonso's 23 race-run of point-scoring (even more disappointing because he would have broken Schumi's record)
2. (re-entry) DRS - making good overtakes null and void
3. (new entry) Maldonado - yet another DNF
4. (new entry) Spinning flags - flags should be fabric
5. (new entry) Facial furniture - see Hamilton's face

Belgian GP Results

1. The Pitstop Princess - 644
2. Wyld Stallyns - 634
3. Beauty & the F1 Geek - 623
4. White Jeans - 591
5. Still Chewing - 582
6. Better the Vettel you know - 573
7. La Pic di Resta - 567
9. Sebastian Vettel's High-Flying Turds - 532
10. Crash of the Titans - 501
11. Hippy F1 - 484
12. Push Pete's Button - 478
13. Put the Vettel on (push the Button) - 477
14. Parke's Winners - 462
15. Ferrari Fanatic - 448
16. The Lord of the Wings - 443
17. Asda Equivalent Energy Drink Racing - 433