Brought to you by TJ13 Courtroom Reporter & Crime Analyst: Adam Macdonald (@adamac39)
It wasn’t quite the exciting climax we saw in Bahrain, but you can’t win them all. China provided us with yet another example of why Hamilton has every right to be confident he will be World Champion for a second time this year. From the unhappiness of Friday’s setup, he changed it overnight after working with his engineers and effectively went into the race ‘blind’ due to the wet running on Saturday. It really was a drive of Champions as he dominated and never even slightly looked in danger from others.
Some sections of the media could not wait to bleat on about how unlucky Rosberg was, but the fact of the matter was Hamilton was quicker – by almost a second a lap at some stages of the race.
Another issue I want to bang the drum about which frustrated me a great deal was the “Vettel cost Ricciardo a podium” line. It was to be expected that people would jump on some kind of Vettel bashing bandwagon given his idiotic “tough luck” call, but Ricciardo was not held up all that much by the four time World Champion. Lap 24 for Ricciardo was the slowest of his stint (a 1:44.94) which was roughly a second slower than his stint average, which would not have been enough for him to leapfrog the Ferrari of Alonso. Factor in the poor straight line speed of the Red Bull and the fact the race ended two laps early, these claims are nonsense.
As for the predictor league, it was another strong showing for many retaining the high-scoring start to this year. Here are some of the highlight performances…
Follow the leader
We have a new leader in the TheJudge13 league as dbkil took over at top rising 80 places with the top 6 all predicted correctly as well as the pole, winner and fastest lap bonus. Even with audacious choice of Kamui Kobayashi as most positions gained the team still managed 74% prediction accuracy.
Also a strong performance
Strong is really an understatement for this team, as Aetherym rose 129 places, breaking the 300 point barrier in the process. Now sitting 4th in the league, just 32 points off the top this is one team to watch for in Barcelona. Predicting a stunning 7 of the top 10 correctly contributed to the team amassing 181 points for the week. Congratulations!
The only way is up
Not an entirely bad weekend for Nederman F1, however, such is the strength of the league the team still dropped 43 places to 109th in the league. A little more luck would have seen it become a very successful weekend, so better luck next time in Spain.
Nobody saw it coming
It seems that once again Williams will be thanking Pastor Maldonado for the strong rear suspension, but this did them no favours when it came to the pit stop and the rear left wheel was slow coming off the car. Felipe Massa has been largely disappointing this year given his pre-season billing, could Barcelona finally be his podium opportunity?
Those with sharp memories will recall Felipe taking a third place there last year after a strong showing from the Ferraris.
Food for thought
Jenson talked after the race about how the McLaren would struggle on front limited circuits, which must come as a worry for their fans with development being slow from the Woking team in recent years. It has been a much debated subject of late whether Jenson Button is actually any good at developing a car. Assuming he is not, this puts a lot of pressure on his young Danish teammate…
In this section there will be a question each week to test your memory from GPs gone by. The idea is not to look it up but see if you can remember it first!
Tyre degradation has always been an issue at the UBS Chinese GP, with 45 pit stops at this year’s edition. How many pit stops were there in total in the 2013 race? Can anyone name the driver who pitted on lap 1?
(Answer will be posted in the next Predictor summary)
Last question’s answer
The question was: Over 3,000 men and women worked on the construction of the Bahrain circuit. How many work hours is it estimated to be in total?
Answer: A staggering 8,265,000 hours of work went into completing the circuit which has received international acclaim and has potential to seat a 50,000 crowd. This may not sound all that impressive compared to the bumper crowds in excess of 100,000 at Silverstone, Melbourne and others, but this is 7% of the country’s population.