What did we learn from the (South) Korean Grand Prix?


Well, we learned that during official practice, Hispania Racing Team let Yamamoto out of the pits with a tyre warmer still on and for such a heinous offence was fined $5,000.  FIA gone mad again.  It could have been HRT’s new secret weapon – after all Yamamoto couldn’t get any slower.

Now to the “race”.  Races behind safety cars are not races, they are processions.  If the conditions are such that the (reputedly) 24 best drivers in the world can’t handle it, then don’t bother starting the event and wasting everybody’s time.

However, South Korea did better than most people thought, and despite all the dire predictions (including mine), the circuit stood up to the racing and the rain.

Alonso deserved his win.  A faultless run, and although gifted the lead when Vettel pulled the pin on his hand grenade this should not be used against him.  Team mate Massa also drove well to come third, but once again shows he is number two in the prancing horse stalls.

Lewis Hamilton made a lot of friends in Korea, with his “let’s get on with it” approach.  He also deserved his second place.  Jenson Button?  What can you say about the current world champion driving a potentially championship winning car and finishing 12th?  The word ‘woose’ comes to mind, I’m afraid.  He complained later that the race should have finished earlier.  About lap three was when Jenson was at his best…

Red Bull goes home licking their wounds.  Webber blew his chances, and probably the world championship, while Vettel blew his engine in a big way.  Webber has had too many crashes this year, and is probably trying just a little too hard.  This leaves Alonso in control of the championship and the smart money will be on the Spaniard.

Michael Schumacher (Mercedes) had a better weekend and obviously still enjoys racing in the rain.  4th equals his best placing all year.  Rosberg did not have a good weekend getting involved in Webber’s wobble and joining him in the DNF category.

Killer Kobayashi (Sauber) did not disappoint, having a go at everything within throwing distance.  While mentioning Sauber, did you know the team is still officially BMW Sauber with a Ferrari engine?  This is because the team was originally BMW Sauber and the FIA, those custodians of good sense and sportsmanship, said that even though BMW had withdrawn, the team name had to stay the same.  Apparently the FIA does not have the resources to use a bottle of correction fluid!  As nonsensical as some of the stewards’ decisions.

We will only see Petrov (Renault) for two more races.  Totally destroying yet another car will have sealed his fate.  Another pay driver will take his place – and he knows it, walking away from the wreckage totally dejected.  Kubica, although a strong points finisher, did not drive with any of his usual fire.

And talking about pay drivers, it looks as if Hulkenberg will be dropped by Williams and a South American driver with 15 million dollars in his overalls pocket will take his place.  Shame really, as Hulkenberg has steadily improved this season.

Down in the Team Poppadum camp Sutil appeared to have totally lost the plot.  With team mate Liuzzi in front of him, he spent his time running himself and anyone near him off the track.  With that display he has probably lost the Renault seat he wanted as well, but he did catch the eye of the stewards who rewarded him with a five place grid penalty for the next GP.

Brazil GP will start at 11 p.m. Thai time.  It will be worthwhile staying up!