13
Mar
10

Bahrain qualifying

So let me get this square in my head.  USF1 comes to the FIA a month or so ago and says “Look fellas, we’re not going to be able to give this Formula One thing a credible go in time for the first four GPs; how ’bout we start off in Spain or thereabouts?” and the FIA says “OMGWTFBBQ” and kicks them out.  But Campos Meta Hispania shows up at Bahrain, runs a grand total of seven laps of practice with only one of their cars, qualifies ten seconds off the pace… and The Bernie’s fine with that?  Shit, Jarno Trulli (now of Lotus F1; last year he qualified, er, on the pole at Bahrain) as much as admitted after Q1 that the newbie teams were treating the first few races as extended practice sessions rather than competitive events.  Why make such a big deal out of excluding USF1?

Well, on with the good stuff.  Vettel’s on the pole; it’s no great surprise that the Red Bull is quick once it has a proper diffuser designed into it.  Ferrari are fast, which is a bit of a surprise given how much they complained during pre-season testing; on the other hand, Scuderia Ferrari often seem more like an excuse for world-class whinging that happen, by coincidence, to be involved in motorsports.  Nico Rosberg out-qualified Michael Schumacher, which is also a bit of a surprise to me but can probably be attributed to Schumi’s relative lack of recent experience.  McLaren were quick but not all that quick, which once again goes to show that the F1 world will bitch to the heavens about a perceived “unfair” advantage even if it doesn’t mean fuck-all in practice.  And Renault and Force India are right up there, which is good to see.

The top ten qualifiers will start tomorrow’s GP on the same tires they used to set their qualifying runs.  For those of you keeping score from home, that means the back of the grid will have a bit of an advantage on the front half, in tires at least, for the first… I dunno, dozen or so laps of the race.  In theory, this will lead to a lot of passing from (say) P11-P15 over (say) P6-P10 in the first few laps, followed by a lot of passing from and over vice versa around the halfway mark; in practice, it may lead to a giant clusterfuck in T1 on the first lap.  Either way, it’ll be exciting… at least for a few seconds.

Vettel’s my pick to win the championship, although I wouldn’t count out either Schumi or Hamilton.  I’m cheering on Barrichello, Kobayashi, and Hamilton — in that order.  Dekimasho!

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anarchocapitalist agitprop

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