Reader Rights: Crisis?What Crisis?
“Crisis Called Off” declared Mercedes team chief Toto Wolff quite ironically to the BBC while examining the huge crowd after the British Grand Prix on Sunday.
Yes because F1 was boring huh? Let’s refresh our memories just a little:
- Mercedes have convincingly won every race since Monza last year bar Malaysia.
- Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg now have (I lost count) pole positions since 2014 started.
- As an added surprise for 2015 the top three on Sunday was Hamilton, Rosberg, Vettel.
- And before the rain hit the top five runners on Sunday were all Mercedes engined (two Mercs, two Williams, one Force India)
Yeah, of course you’d say that Toto!
So while a number of British reporters and commentators were getting rapt in the moment of their hero winning the British Grand Prix mostly thanks to a complete stroke of luck, others were looking at the race thinking that if only Williams had bothered to strategize we might have actually had a fight for the lead of a grand prix this year.
Instead the closest we got to seeing an on track lead change was Nico Rosberg cruising up to Hamilton only to be denied by the fact that there was no way he could double-stack in the pit box without losing out.
1 more lap of dry skies with Rosberg closing by two seconds a lap and the German would have had track position, first pit rights and Hamilton may have been the biggest loser this side of the British Isles.
Still at least we saw some great passing this year. I don’t think so. Compared with last years radio bashing, track limits infringing, good old biffo between Vettel and Alonso this British GP was as passing bereft as it gets.
If anything this race absolutely confirmed why F1 needs to ditch complex aero and definitely not return to refuelling. The last fact duly noted by Martin Brundle as Hamilton passed a stationary pitting Massa for the lead when he said ‘and that ladies and gentleman is why we should not return to refuelling’.
Even the supposed snooze fest that was 2014 had Bahrain and Hungary. Tours de force in what makes a breathtaking grand prix. Huge crashes, risky passing, tyres falling off cliffs, cars catching fire, strategy differences and the odd out of position ex world champion.
But most of all passes for the lead. On Sunday everyone except Hamilton fans got the biggest racing denial in when he ducked into the pits and emerged as a ‘strategy god’.
Wanna see ‘strategy god’? Watch Senna demolish Donnington in 1993. Even Alain Prost said ‘he made us all look a little stupid’.
V6 era F1 definitely can be exciting but yesterday was not its finest hour – just a well-timed home grown victory to please the crowd.
And as an after thought why in Sir Franks name did Williams not split strategy and send Bottas or Massa (preferably Massa at that point) in to pit early while the other held up the Mercs?
That team needs some self belief. And some Senna-esque ruthlessness.
Opinion by reader Matt Bolzon