30/10/2012

Sunday Analysis

First of all, apologies this article is late - have been having technical problems. Better late than never, eh?

Formula One
Race Results: Hulkenberg 8th (4 points), di Resta 12th, Karthikeyan 21st.

Given that the Sahara Force India cars qualified in 12th & 16th positions, the race went quite well to be honest - both drivers gained four positions on their grid spots!

Nico Hulkenberg had an impressive start to the race and quickly found himself settled into 8th place. From then on, it was just a case of maintaining position. The German driver was able to do this without incident and would therefore pick up a four valuable points.

As for Paul di Resta, he also had a good start and got upto 14th early on. The Scottish driver was able to benefit from problems to other cars and eventually finish 12th. Despite him not scoring any points, this result was actually quite impressive. His car looked awful to drive in qualifying, the balance was appauling after he went completely wrong with setup during FP3. These problems carried through to the race. His VJM05 was so inbalanced that i'm surprised he managed to make the checkered flag - good effort!

Constructors championship (5th-8th)
5) Mercedes (136 pts) (+0)
6) Sauber (116) (+0)
7) Force India (93) (+4)
8) Williams (59) (+1)
Note: numbers in green represent the points scored this weekend.

For P6:
Pre-India: an average of 6.75 points more than Sauber needed each race.
Post-India: an average of 7.67 points more than Sauber needed each race.

For the second race in sucession, Sauber failed to score this weekend. Despite this, our average points required per race still rose - however, that's not an issue. All it takes is one race with both cars solidly in the points (say P5 & P6) and we'd be right back in the fight. Three races to go, it's definately do-able.

Drivers championship (11th-16th)
11) Kamui Kobayashi (50 pts)
12) Nico Hulkenberg (49)
13) Paul di Resta (44)
14) Michael Schumacher (43)
15) Pastor Maldonado (33)
16) Bruno Senna (26)

In terms of the drivers championship, Nico Hulkenberg has pulled away slightly from Paul di Resta. Although i'm sure Paul will be stronger next weekend. This battle will go down to the final race purely because both drivers are so evenly matched.

At the back of the field, Narain Karthikeyan had an interesting race.

His race engineer sent several messages during the GP telling Narain to slow down as the brakes were overheating. Narain obliged and as a result, fell back from his teammate, de la Rosa, at a considerble rate. One thing to note about the HRT is that their brake ducts are not sufficently big to cool the brakes enough on many tracks. In India, it was pretty clear de la Rosa didn't slow to cool his brakes (that's why he pulled away from Narain). On lap 42, Pedro had a brake failure (due to overheating). Another race where Narain has done a good job to beat his teammate - a classic case of the tortoise vs the hare.

Drivers championship (19th-25th, all 0 pts)
19) Timo Glock (Best finish: 12th x1)
20) Heikki Kovalainen (Best finish: 13th x1)
21) Vitaly Petrov (Best finish: 13th x1)
22) Jerome D'Ambrosio (Best finish: 13th x1)
23) Charles Pic (Best finish: 15th x2)
24) Narain Karthikeyan (Best finish: 15th x1)
25) Pedro de la Rosa (Best finish: 17th x2)

No changes at the bottom of the championship this weekend.

Review quotes here.

World Endurance Championship
Race Result: Chandhok 5th (overall & in class) 2nd (in LMP1 trophy) (10 points for Karun, 18 points for JRM).

Having started the race from the LMP1 trophy pole position (4th overall) - a win was the aim.

It was Karun who started the race for JRM and he vallinately kept the lead until his first pit stop. When he handed the car over to Peter Dumbreck, he was in P5 overall (P2 in LMP1 trophy). The team did look on course to win, however a change of bodywork during the final driver change cost the them one minute which put the British-based team out of contention. They would finish 2nd in the LMP1 trophy however, 5th overall. The car crossed the line just 8 seconds behind the car ahead! Without the minute lost at the pit stop, JRM would have easily won - a positive end to the season!

Karun Chandhok (JRM driver):
"We started off reasonably well and the first couple of laps were okay but we realised early on that we were not quick enough when compared to the #12 Rebellion and the Strakka. I could hold the Strakka back initially as I had pretty good traction and straight line speed, but I got stuck behind a Porsche at the wrong moment and Jonny [Kane] got ahead of me. After that I just found a consistent pace and drove my own race. It was a bit lonely, with nobody behind, even though I did have a battle with Danny towards the end of my triple stint. But to finish on the podium again is a perfect way to end the season. We can be very proud of the way we have improved over the year and I have really enjoyed my first season in endurance racing".

Drivers World Championship (9th-12th):

9) Enzo Potolicchio (53.5)
10=) Peter Dumbreck (50.5)
10=) David Brabham (50.5)
10=) Karun Chandhok (50.5)
11) Marc Gené (49)
12) Ryan Dalziel (48.5)

LMP1 trophy standings:
1) Rebellion Racing (205 pts)
2) Strakka Racing (148)
3) JRM (123)
4) Pescarolo Team (30)
5) OAK Racing (25)

The final position for JRM Racing was already decided before this race. 3rd place, a good effort. Karun Chandhok and his teammates finish 10th overall in the Drivers World Championship - they'll be happy with that! The question now is; will there be an Indian in the World Endurance Championship in 2013? I'm expecting Karun Chandhok to retain his seat whereas NarainKarthikeyan may make the switch over - let's wait and see!

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