Are Hamilton and Button really Senna-Prost Part II?

Along with Formula 1 being the pinnacle of motorsports, I’m also now convinced it is the pinnacle of hyperbole.

Witness the Armageddon pronunciations following the Bahrain GP. Witness the anti-Armageddon talk in response.

And now, witness all the talk following the Chinese GP that McLaren has put together a latter-day Ayrton Senna-Alain Prost duo.

In Lewis Hamilton, apparently, we have the passion, the aggression, the ruthlessness, the driving moxie — often most apparent in his “prolific passing” ability — of Senna. In China, he again dragged his McLaren up the grid, including past Michael Schumacher. And he had the pit lane episode with Sebastian Vettel.

By contrast, Jenson Button is strategic and smart, with a smooth driving style that coaxes the car carefully to the finish line. His two wins this year, of course, have been at least in part, if not largely, because of smart tire choices on his part, followed by his ability to maximize the tire’s life. He’s Prost, all over again.

Now, certainly there are some similarities, starting with the teaming being at McLaren. But is it a bit too soon to be making such comparisons? I this just a matter of journalists and fans creating a rivalry before it really exists, not to mention among drivers not yet worthy of being mentioned in the same breath at Prost and Senna?

Or are you excited about what this rivalry might hold, might develop into? There certainly is wide agreement that the 2010 drive line-up is the best we’ve seen since Senna and Prost were behind the wheel. At McLaren, do we have a line-up of similar caliber?

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