TJ13 F1 readers poll: Bahrain most exciting race of the year and a look ahead to Barcelona

After each race weekend, we’ve asked you to vote on how you rate the race from 0-10. Here are the results so far.

6.86 Autsralian GP

6.84 Malaysia GP

6.39 Chinese GP

7.57 Bahrain GP

The race

In what must be seen as a turn up for the books, you felt Bahrain was clearly ahead of the rest of the early season flyaway races.  This despite Vettel winning at a canter and despite the annual questions asked over whether F1 should race in Bahrain. Having followed a number of these polls over the years, Bahrain is often rated the worst or in the bottom 3 of the year by F1 fans.

Of course Vettel may have had a tougher time had Alonso not had problems with his DRS, but again questions must be asked over Ferrari’s ability to make the right strategy calls in the heat of the moment. There appears to be some consensus among the analysts, that the likelyhood of a second failure was high and Ferrari should have told Alonso not to attempt to use his DRS again.

Heikki Kovalainene returned to F1 that weekend, even though his participation was limited to 90 minutes in FP1. Unsurprisingly following Heikki’s input the team had their strongest running of the year in the race and with the new set of Pirelli bullet proof tyre available for practice, we should expect to see Heikki pounding out the laps to develop the car setup in FP1 each race weekend.

Grosjean drove well though the field for a podium and of course we had Jenson squealing like a girl when under attack from his young upstart team mate – Sergio Perez. At last we may have glimpsed the reason McLaren signed Perez over Hulkneberg who tacked the world champion with all the aggression of a classic Mexican gunslinger in a Spaghetti Western.

TJ13 readers comments

So how did Bahrain buck it’s usual borefest stereotype? Here’s a few of TJ13 readers comments which explain their thinking.

“Only a six from me – an uninspiring circuit, a fairly lack-lustre race except for a few instances of genuine racing rather than DRS assisted overtaking and a difficult to follow highlights offering by the BBC”. @Ted.

An unusually indecisive @thejudge13 said,

“I agree – the circuit is uninspiring, but the race was pretty exiting….

  • well…. the first place wasn’t but the rest of the places were…. 

well second was I guess an uninspiring 2 stop trundle… 

  • Jenson did incredibly well to get from 10th to…. 

finish where he started Mmm

Okay – you got me Ted but I’m saying 7 – because Grosjean did a good job and Perez gave Button a lesson… and Lewis hadn’t a clue where he was most of the time – that was entertaining too – defo 7″.

A lurker from ‘the dark’ called @Guest felt the race was great as a spectacle

“It was a very exciting race. Ferrari had great chances, but failed miserably with Alonso’s DRS and Massa’s tyres. It really opened a chance for Vettel, who took a chance. He was probably too powerful and left others far behind after tackling his way forward the grid. The Flying Finns, Kimi Raikkonen and Nico Rosberg drove as expected: Raikkonen could hold his tyres in good shape, while Rosberg had misfortune with his. On the lower places, Caterham was finally a bit better than before during this season, so Marussia should watch out.

@DomVito commented on the obvious lack of fans in attendance, though didn’t allow this to colour his view of the race.

“Great race. Disappointing though to watch without seeing thousands of fans cheering at every corner. Racing in Bahrain seems a bit contrived to me”.

Who goes well in Spain?

So what do you think we are in store for this weekend. A Wigan victory over Manchester City in a classic David verses Goliath in the final of the oldest and largest association football competition in the world? I digress.

There have been 37 F1 races since 1950, though 2 races held at Jarama in 1967 and 1980 these were non-championship races.

Ferrari have won 11, McLaren and Williams 8 each, Lotus are close behind with 7 wins and Red Bull wins in 2010-11 give them 2. The race has been held at the Circuit de Catalunya since 1991, but in 1992 the race was not called the Spanish GP but the Grand Prix of the Olympic Games. The table of wins looks a little different when we consider only F1 races since 1991.

Ferrari 7, Williams 6, McLaren 4, Red Bull 2.

Interestingly there have been 7 different winners in the last 8 races and the only driver on the grid with more than one win is Kimi.

2012  Pastor Maldonado Williams-Renault
2011  Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault
2010  Mark Webber Red Bull-Renault
2009  Jenson Button Brawn-Mercedes
2008  Kimi Räikkönen Ferrari
2007  Felipe Massa Ferrari
2006  Fernando Alonso Renault
2005  Kimi Räikkönen McLaren-Mercedes
2004  Michael Schumacher Ferrari
2003  Michael Schumacher Ferrari
2002  Michael Schumacher Ferrari
2001  Michael Schumacher Ferrari
2000  Mika Häkkinen McLaren-Mercedes
1999  Mika Häkkinen McLaren-Mercedes
1998  Mika Häkkinen McLaren-Mercedes
1997  Jacques Villeneuve Williams-Renault
1996  Michael Schumacher Ferrari
1995  Michael Schumacher Benetton-Renault
1994  Damon Hill Williams-Renault
1993  Alain Prost Williams-Renault
1992  Nigel Mansell Williams-Renault
1991  Nigel Mansell Williams-Renault

How will the teams have fared during the past 3 weeks. What have you read that leads you to believe it won’t be a Red Bull dominated race? Can Williams raise their game to somewhere ear the performance they delivered in 2012? In the battle of the bottom 2 – who will conquer?

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