State of Mind
In what was quite an incident-packed German GP, Fernando Alonso became the first driver to win more than 2 races in the 2012 World Championship. With this hard-fought win, he goes 33 points clear of second-placed Mark Webber, who managed to only finish 8th. Young Defending World Champion Sebastian Vettel, who finished 2nd in the race, had to forfeit 20 seconds after being found guilty of breaking the rules while overtaking Button on the penultimate lap, and had to settle for an ordinary 5th place instead. The German, for once, was on the wrong side of the race stewards- a penalty that could be very crucial in the larger scheme of things. It keeps him 3rd in the Championship, 2 points behind Webber- and gives Alonso plenty of space and confidence to breathe.
Spot the Winner
The top 3 were the ones in the spotlight throughout the 67 lap race. Button, who endured his most miserable season so far which only 7 points from his last 6 races, has finally proved that there is a concept called the law of averages. The problem with Mclaren Mercedes is that if one driver rises, he is seldom accompanied by a similar rise by his partner, and this time, it was Hamilton who took over Button’s role and refused to finish the race. This was not before he created a big nuisance of himself by trying to unlap himself, overtaking a furious Vettel in the process. He had to make his presence felt, and one suspects it was the only reason he was thrown back out onto the track after his early puncture that pushed him to last position. Whatever the case, it kind of worked, because it disturbed the usually unflappable Vettel, and forced him to make a silly move towards the end of the race. All this while, Alonso admirably held off the two cars behind him, who were clearly faster than the Ferrari, but that has been the case throughout Alonso’s Ferrari career. He loves a challenge, and he is finally rising to it in style- proving that there is no driver more skillful than he is in F1 at the moment. What he lacks in speed, he makes up for in experience and terrific defensive technique. That his partner Massa has endured yet another miserable race- only compounds the fact that Alonso has been a driving masterclass in the first half of this season. The way he held back Button, and then actually pulled away in the last few laps demonstrates that Ferrari seems to have gotten their strategies right with the Spaniard- coming a long way from the season opener in Australia.
Kimi Raikkonen put in yet another stellar effort to finish 4th (3rd, thanks to Vettel’s demotion), and he could be a massive threat in the coming season- if his motivation holds up and if he is provided with a better car. For now, though, he is proving that the long break has not robbed him off his natural ability, and it is only a matter of time before we see him at the top of a podium again. Schumacher finished yet another race ahead of Rosberg, third in a row, enjoying a slight peak in form at the right time after going through a very barren first 5 races. Hamilton’s Championship hopes have all but evaporated, after this third retirement in the last 4 races.
Lewis is busy breaking up, guys. Concentrate on me.
After a record-breaking week for British Sports, where two Brits secured the top two spots at the Tour De France, and the pulling out of Nadal from the Olympics which could secure atleast a bronze medal for Andy Murray- the two bumbling Brits in Formula One are taking turns while trying to bring back the adoring Home fans back to the core of the earth. Meanwhile, Spain are going all guns blazing into the second half of the year, after winning everything there is to win in Football- with Alonso now making up for Nadal’s injury absence. He has now win 2 of the last 3 races, finishing on the podium in all 3, and his only real contender- Vettel- will need to stage a massive comeback while hoping for Alonso to break his streak of finishing 21 consecutive races in the points.
On to Hungary now, where it will all come down to who is more hungry for success. As of now, it’s a two horse race- and it’s only a matter of time before Vettel pulls out his Chariot that took him across last year. No disrespect to Webber, but he is the ultimate no. 2 man, and will still contribute largely to Red Bull winning their third consecutive constructors Championship.