McLaren- Hats off to Kimi for a great drive and the team for positioning him in just the right way to insure a victory. I feel a bit bad that they didnâ€™t call JPM in when the SC came out but it made for a pull-over without looking like JPM was pulling over for Kimi. JPM made two critical mistakes however and these are really what cost him the victory.
Renault- I am not sure if FA had any problems but how uncharacteristic of him to white-wall the tire when leading. Heâ€™s a great driver and these mistakes do happen. I recall MS taking a close look at that wall a few years ago so forgiveness can be given here. GF had trouble as well but I must say that he looked very good until then. FA was quicker but quicker doesnâ€™t always mean leading. Getting around GF may have been harder than it seems until Flavio radioâ€™s to have GF move. Good drive GF; you deserved a better finish.
Ferrari- Well it must be great for Ferrari to see red on the podium again. MS had a three stop strategy but still was left out of the first half of the race. I would say that the tire performed well mid-race but again, you need to be competitive the entire race, not just the middle. I think the drive of the race must go to RB! Coming from pit lane with full load and finishing 3rd is a great achievement. He has done this a number of times and I for one am sad that there was no coverage of his drive on the world feed.
Williams- As usual, Nick was handing Mark his backside until hampered by an engine problem. Nick was surely on the podium or close to it had he been able to hang in there. Mark on the other hand had several ragged attempts at getting by the Sauber and in the end finished. Probably three spots down from where Nick would have been. I recall the comment made to Uther Pendragon when thinking of Mark; â€œno Uther, you are not the oneâ€. With all the finger pointing between Williams and BMW; the result still leave it unsolved. One engine failure and one mediocre finish. Is it really the lump or the aero? The debate rages on.
Toyota- Good drive for Ralf but sad for JT. I think JT had a better pace and would have outscored his teammate again leaving Ralf in a bit of a quandary for next season. I canâ€™t imagine Toyota sitting on mediocre performance given their investment. JT seems to shine at times and given the car; I think he can be as competitive as anyone. It just seems there is a lack of motivation sometimes. I am sure that is not the case but the results just arenâ€™t consistent.
Honda- With a damaged rear diffuser and several laps down; it was interesting to see Sato back on track for data acquisition. Apparently changing out the gear box and running the car was going to give the Honda engineers an edge and that was interesting to see. Poor Button made a split second decision and it cost him a finish. Straigh-line the corner and let MS through or try to make the corner? He chose that latter and paid dearly. Somehow I donâ€™t see Kimi or FA making that decision. To finish is to have a chance. Button has always seemed flappable in these situations though and I think it is a maturity that he is gaining from the decisions that he is making. If I am Sir Frank; I would rather have Jense than Webber.
Sauber- It seems JV was driving for his life but put his nose up someoneâ€™s backside early. Thus removing his chance at a point finish. He seems lucky to finish a race let alone the season at this point. Massa was a surprise and given the Ferrari lump; it shows signs that Ferrariâ€™s problems are not engine related. Good drive for Massa who could have easily put it in the wall given his penchant for radical driving. I was wondering if he and Webber were going to finish the race or finish in the litter.
Jordan- Both cars finish. With all the political ramblings and the departure of top executives; it is a miracle that they showed up let alone finish. This team is in serious disarray and Narain is the least of their worries. Anyone miss Eddie?
Minardi- How about finishing 11th! Thatâ€™s not bad for the privateer. I was impressed with Friesacher until he had issues and Albers made a good run at it but was a bit of a hand full when being passed by faster cars. Canâ€™t blame him though, this is a racey as they have been all year.
Michelin- Seemed like they brought the right tire but I am still a little fuzzy on the â€œdiscernable groovesâ€ rule because there were a lot of Michelinâ€™s out there that looked like slicks.
Bridgestone- Seems like they made some improvement but still need to be competitive at the beginning and not just the middle of the race. The tires looked good after the race so that is a testament to the wear-factor.