Today: 1 – 2 (DNF)

24 Oct

SO

Korean GP this weekend, after all the speculation as to whether the thing would actually go ahead, everybody racked up nervously over the past week, anxiously doubting what they would be expecting on the 5 hour drive from Seoul.

It seemed apart from the media bridge and the placements of seats IN the grandstands, everything seemed complete. The newely laid track was scrutinised by all drivers and race engineers, and even Martin Brundle had a crack at it.

Cautious thoughts were raised about the oil seeping through the top of the track surface (a natural process for all newely laid tarmac… needs a few weeks to sort itself out) making it very slippery. The pit lane – a completely different surface altogether left the front jack man from prety much all the teams with sore shins, as the concrete that was down just made the cars do this nice little slide when the brakes were applied.

The entrance to the pitlane became more of an issue when FP1 graced our screens, cars slowing to enter the pitlane, were behind a blind corner, on the racing line :/

The times during all three practice sessions dropped off from about 2min 30sec to 1min 40secs or less, everybody having to learn the track. This probably revealed the most adaptable and quickest learner on the grid, Robert Kubica, who although decided to remain distinctly average throughtout FP1 and FP2, demoted the rest of the field to nul by setting the fastest time in FP3 – fastest of anyone in free practices.

Qualifying led to no real surprises, Quali-king Sebastian Vettel made pole with Mark Webber blocking out the dirty side of the grid in second. Petrov suffered his 5 place grid drop and started the race in 20th, whilst there was more controvery over the 7-time world champion Michael Schumacher blocking his former team mate Reubens Barichello. When the issue was pointed out in the media interviews afterwards, MS waited to apologise. It seemed accepted with a pinch of salt – old wounds don’t heal completely it seems.

THE RACE.

“It’s raining, quite alot” – Legard is way ahead of us in pointing out the obvious. Charlie whiting decided it safest to start behind the safety car, which they all did, for 4 laps.

Red flag and everyone starts twiddling their thumbs in their cars (Felipe Massa), re-doing their make-up (Lewis Hamilton), re-doing their hair (Nico Rosberg) or were discussing the differences between the safety car in spray and an F1 car with Bernd Maylander (Mark Webber, Fernando Alonso ).

Cup of tea later and they decide to start following the leader again. THEN FINALLY they let them go go go! time seemed to fly at least for Nico Rosberg who seemed to jump everyone and was doing fantastic until Mark Webber decided that running a little bit over the curb was a brilliant idea. 2 retirements. (and some more following the leader)

Racing continued with Sutil seeming to explore across everbody else’s racing line like a sheep dog, and Liuzzi taking some excursions. Jarno Trulli was the next retirement with some unfortunate Hydraulic issues. 3 retirements.

Lucas Di Grassi assisted Virgin by adding more DNF’s to their race tally, unlucky aquaplaning, whilst Sebastian Buemi took a first class ticket off the track taking Timo Glock with him, earning himself a grid drop at the next race. Vitaly Petrov seemed to think that the race didn’t have enough carnage spread across the track, so put his shiny yellow Renault into the pitwall. Pretty hefty impact, which won’t do his 2011 race seat any good. Sutils explorations soon caught up with him, as he collided with Kamui Kobayashi, and also earned himself a grid drop for knowing e had break issues. (I think the issues are called ‘standing water’)

Sebastian Vettel had it all going for him until his engine just went. He pulled a Heiki Kovalinen to put his own car out on track.

Hulkenberg secured a point after a magnificant race leaving him with a NEED to pit a few laps from the end of the race, Algesuari finished above Jenson Button, who in turn finished above Kovalinen and the 2 HRT’s.

Fernando ‘eyebrows’ Alonso took the victory, Lewis Hamilton and Felipe Massa followed him swiftly over the line as darkness fell over the first race weekend at Korea.

A good weekend all in all. The track should be perfect for next year and all the curbs will be in place, as well as some accomodation and apparently more parking facilities!

Eyebrows now leads the championship by 11 points, with 2 races to go. Although RBR are still confident they WILL win both championships, the fans confidence was knocked a bit at the time. But we’re a resiliant bunch. The victory will be ours.

The party afterwards will defo be worth getting arrested for sneeking into aswell…

 

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