Grosjean, who finished third has plenty of raw speed, as could be seen from the Qualifying, but has yet to turn that into race pace. When he does, he will be the next champion, but don’t expect it this year! His team mate Raikkonen continues to give good solid performances, but if the team can’t get him up on to the top step of the podium, he will get bored and take his ice cream and retire again. Or - he might go back to Ferrari to replace the underperforming Massa.
Vettel (Red Bull) was unable to give the finger the exercise, and although he is up near the top of the championship table, he does not look like being a certainty to repeat his WDC title. Adrian Newey will have to weave some more magic before that will happen, though Newey being the creative engineer that he is, might just come up with something, and which will be legal as well.
His team mate Mark Webber again disappointed his fans. Did not make the top 10 in Qualifying, but did a blistering first lap to leap to 7th from 11th but then the forward march stopped and he finished 8th, though Red Bull has said that he had a differential problem. Let us hope it was not a gearbox problem which would mean a five place grid demotion at the next meeting (Spa, September 2). Quite frankly, these penalties for changing an engine or a gearbox are ridiculous. What does the FIA hope to achieve by these, other than trying artificially to mix up the field.
While on the FIA, its much vaunted DRS system did not work in Hungary. It requires much longer straights than were available at the Hungaroring. The results of the race depended once again on the tyre lottery. Top teams are able to double-guess the degradation of their tyres and bring their drivers in at the last minute before the tyres “fall off the cliff”. But get it wrong and the driver is stuck in slower traffic and the team ends up with poor results.
Alonso (Ferrari) drove a consistent race. Not fast enough to challenge for the lead, but fast enough to keep challengers behind him. He has really become the ‘thinking’ driver. Massa did scrape into the points, but Ferrari is looking for more than that for Felipe. Word is that Ferrari has not taken up its option in Massa’s services for next year. Pack your bags now, Felipe.
Button, in the second McLaren, showed plenty of tiger in the opening laps, but then after the pit stops the fire went out and he just maintained position and “passing” became a lost art. Let us hope the holiday will sparkle Button up again.
One of the best drives of the day came from Senna in the Williams. Stayed out of trouble, drove sensible and was rewarded with 7th place, in front of Webber, Massa and Rosberg (Mercedes). His team mate Maldonado repeated his barging style of driving and the stewards repeated the drive through penalty. When will he ever learn?
Schumacher (Mercedes) had the weekend from Hell. Overheated on the grid, turned the engine off but could not restart. Then hit for speeding in the pit lane in his hurry to join the race, a subsequent drive-through penalty and then a puncture.
A break of four weeks now until Spa. What will we do?