Red Bull Racing have had an incredible week in Barcelona capped by their Australian driver, Mark Webber, claiming a near-perfect victory from Pole Position, after he took charge at the first corner and pulled away from the chasing pack in this afternoon’s 2010 Formula 1 Spanish Grand Prix.
Behind Webber, however, things got really interesting, not least for his teammate Sebastian Vettel, who had to first endure a nightmare pit-stop which saw him overtaken – and pushed off the course – by Lewis Hamilton’s emerging McLaren for second place, then his brakes failed on the last ten laps leading to another enforced pitstop and his having to coast home.
Luckily for Vettel, he managed to grab the third podium slot thanks to Hamilton’s bad luck – the British former World Champion had a tire blowout with just two laps between him and a vital 18 point second place.
Hamilton’s and Vettel’s misfortune saw home hero Fernando Alonso gain two places in his Red Ferrari with just a handful of laps remaining. He had driven adequately to retain his fourth qualification place, and had something of a gap in front and behind thanks to the pace of the Red Bulls and Hamilton’s McLaren in front, and the fact that Michael Schumacher was holding up Jenson Button’s McLaren following a slow pitstop from the World Champion. Button had a sticky clutch to blame for his troubles, but would only likely have finished one place better without it.
Button currently leads the World Championship, and McLaren lead the Constructors. The team are only three points ahead of Ferarri, however, who are, in turn, only three points clear of the resurgent Red Bull Racing team. Button, likewise, has only three points on Alonso in second, showing that consistency, not just raw pace, might be the order of the day in 2010, with the new points structure.
Had Hamilton got two laps further today, he would be 18 points better off, just one point behind his teammate. As it is, thanks to Red Bull’s latest update, and the class they showed this weekend, it looks ominously like Webber and Vettel could be the men to catch next week at Monaco, and beyond. Providing rain doesn’t come.
This season is still gearing up to be one of the most fascinating in recent memory, not least because Vettel today showed that, despite their searing pace, the Red Bull has more than a couple of reliability question marks hovering around that refuse to go away.
What better time to throw in the intrigue and excitement of a Monaco Grand Prix? The great news, for fans of Formula 1, is that there are only seven days to wait for the circus in Monte Carlo to come to town.
Formula 1 2010 Drivers Championship – Current Standings
|3||Sebastian Vettel||Ger||Red Bull-Renault||60|
|4||Mark Webber||Aus||Red Bull-Renault||53|
|5||Nico Rosberg||Ger||Mercedes GP||50|
|9||Michael Schumacher||Ger||Mercedes GP||22|
|10||Adrian Sutil||Ger||Force India-Mercedes||16|
|11||Vitantonio Liuzzi||Ita||Force India-Mercedes||8|
|14||Jaime Alguersuari||Spa||Toro Rosso-Ferrari||3|
|16||Sebastien Buemi||Swi||Toro Rosso-Ferrari||0|
|17||Pedro de la Rosa||Spa||BMW Sauber-Ferrari||0|
|18||Kamui Kobayashi||Jpn||BMW Sauber-Ferrari||0|
|21||Lucas di Grassi||Brz||Virgin-Cosworth||0|
Formula 1 2010 Constructors Championship Current Standings