Hamilton fumes after strategy mistake

Posted on | Author Keith Collantine

An extra pit stop cost Hamilton a likely podium
An extra pit stop cost Hamilton a likely podium

Lewis Hamilton performed brilliantly in the Australian Grand Prix but was clearly angry at finishing only sixth having run third earlier in the race.

Hamilton blamed the team’s decision for him to make a second stop for tyres on lap 35. That dropped him behind the Ferraris of Felipe Massa and Fernando Alonso.

Although he caught them at around 1.5 seconds per lap Hamilton struggled to pass Alonso. On the team radio he repeatedly asked the team about the decision to make an extra pit stop and complained that he had no grip on his last set of tyres.

Hamilton had successfully made several passes earlier in the race, beginning with a move on his team mate. He then lost several positions when most of the field pitted for tyres.

He got into a three-way battle with Massa and Ma rk Webber, first passing Massa and then trying to get by Webber at turn three. Webber ran deep into the corner and Hamilton got passed – but Massa moved ahead of the pair of them.

Hamilton got back ahead of Massa but clipped the Ferrari on his way past, damaging his front wing. He then caught Nico Rosberg.

After several attempts Hamilton got around the outside of Rosberg at the high-speed turn 11. Rosberg came back at him, but with yellow flags at the next corner due to Sebastian Vettel’s crashed Red Bull he was unable to re-pass.

Now up to third, Hamilton spent several laps behind Robert Kubica, his team took the decision to bring him in the pits for fresh tyres. Some other cars behind him had already pitted, but Kubica and the Ferraris stayed out.

After several attempts Hamilton was looking around the outside of Alonso at turn 15 when he was hit by Mark Webber.

Webber apologised to Hamilton after the race. But should the McLaren driver have been in the position in the first place?

At the end of the race it was clear the drivers who hadn’t changed tyres were lapping much slower – by up to two seconds per lap compared to drivers like Hamilton and Webber who’d taken new tyres.

If Hamilton hadn’t pitted, what state would his tyres have been in by the end of the race? While drivers like Button and Kubica had been able to preserve their tyres after their early first stop, Hamilton had given his a lot of punishment in making his way through the field.

But it’s not likely Hamilton’s tyres were in such bad shape that he wouldn’t have been able to keep the Ferraris behind.

The gamble backfired, and Hamilton clearly isn’t happy at losing a likely third and a potential second for sixth place after a great drive.

320 comments on “Hamilton fumes after strategy mistake”

  1. David Watkins
    28th March 2010, 9:46

    In. A. Nutshell.

    1. This was clearly a great race! I am a ferrari fan but I clearly think that the best two of the day were Fernando and Lewis! they show impressive motivation and they are aggressive enough to make you jump on the chair! I really hope this championship will be as thrilling as in this race! forza Ferrari

    2. The strategy was no “mistake”, it was a deliberate action to handicap Hamilton and give Button the win, its joke and people can see exactly whats going on here..

      1. David Watkins
        28th March 2010, 10:22

        That’s nonsense I’m afraid. McLaren have been incompetent before and have been so again.

      2. Haha I think it would be more likely the other way around :P

      3. I agree, it is absolutely disgusting and people who are fans of other drivers and teams are saying the same thing on other forums. How can Hamilton’s brilliance prevail when his team favour Button? I find it outrageous. Can’t stand McLaren now.

        1. Are you being serious? Hamilton would never have beaten Button had he not stopped, they didn’t know how well the soft tires would hold out for a whole race distance so they went each way with the strategy. Add to that Hamilton had been driving hard in traffic and is generally harder on his tires, and he was the obvious choice to bring in.

          Now stop it.

          1. You know i don’t think Mclaren tried to help Button over Hamilton but how many would have believed me if i said so with the drivers reversed?
            If Lewis goes well at other races people will still say it’s his team.

        2. Stop the tiresome bleating S Hughes – time and time again, Hamilton has proved that he doest;t have the nous.

          There’s no conspiracy – he just can’t manage his tires or a race. He’s sees red and lost his cool.

        3. Bigbadderboom
          28th March 2010, 13:55

          Sorry Hughes but you talk nonsense. Hamilton needs to sort his life off the track out and stop becoming this arrogant self indulgent figure. I am a supporter of hamilton, I live in the area he was raised and have been very proud of his acheivements, but thje fact is he was abusing his tyres and was actually complaining they were going away from him. The strategy was simply ondone by ferrari managing to got the distance by better tyre management. To think McLaren favour Button is ludicrous.

          1. Martin Whitmarsh himself said the strategy was wrong – so how come you claim you know more than him?

          2. Making a decision that turned out to be wrong doesn’t automatically mean the team favours Button, Hughes.

          3. Jhonnie Siggie
            28th March 2010, 20:36

            There is no proof that he had problems with his tires. The team made a call after he spent a few laps behind Kubica plus seeing MSC and others pit and improved their lap times. At the end of the day Button’s gamble paid off and Hamilton’s didnt. Dont get your panties in a wad over a tire issue that didnt exist.

        4. This is sarcastic right? I assumed it could ONLY be sarcasm, but so many people have taken it seriously that I am now quite confused.

          1. Don´t worry Matt. It´s obviously sarcastic…

          2. Thank god for that. Having read cabbage’s arguement further down (I’m afraid that it goes on so long that it can’t be anything other than serious and is almost as ridiculous as the ‘Glock pulling over for Hamilton’ ‘conspiracy’) I was terrified that he wasn’t the only person actually thick enough to think that.

      4. F1 conspiracy theory #7483817

        1. Conspiricy theories aside, that was a wonderful advert for the refuelling ban. Super fast qualifying. Racing for track position. Dynamic strategy influenced by the knowledge of a driver live on track, not by computers back in Woking. Fuel levels would make stops predictable. We had no idea who would stop and why today, exciting stuff.

      5. No need to be so paranoid! Lewis hits his tyres harder but a lot of cars stopped for a second set. At the time it would have looked reasonable and would any of us have been surprised in the event Jenson, Kubica and the Ferraris actually stopped?

        Lewis was unlucky as much as anything. He got into a couple of tangles with Webber and was carrying damage to the front wing. Despite the incidents getting him out of position, he was still one of the most consistently fast guys out there today.

        Jenson made a ballsy call to get himself into a winning position. Lewis suffered from a call which, with hindsight, was a bad one.

        1. David Watkins
          28th March 2010, 10:53

          Some of us were holding in our heads when they pulled him in. It was so bad that you didnt need hindsight to see it

        2. Mclaren made a tactical error by basically thinking that they could have HAMILTON in on fresh tyres and use his aggrssive ability to curve through the remaining field.Remember at that time the forecast indicated that the front runners will pit hence mclarens idea was to have Hamilton pit and then maybe leap frog the front runners after they had pitted.IT WAS also some form of cussion incase
          something happenned to Button
          I can understand Hamiltons anger and frustration with all the news since his police incident and therefore his addrenalin was at maximum as he made his way through the field.ALL said and done to me its good that at this rate we shall have a diffrent winner at each race which is good for competition and my bet is that we shall have Either Schumacher or Roseburg on the pondium at Malaysian grand prix next week end…if not Webber and Vettel this time ….

      6. Richard in Hong Kong
        28th March 2010, 11:14

        Jenson made the decision to come in early and put on slicks. HE made the decision – not the team.

        In other words, if Lewis had the balls he could have done the same thing. But he didn’t, and he came 6th, not 1st.

        There’s only one mistake made here, and it was made by Lewis.

        1. Yeah but it was the only option for him really, as he said after the race, he was wrecking his inters and so rather than lose a lots of places he thought meh I’ve got nothing to lose let’s get me some slicks and in this case it paid off. Like I said in another thread it’s rather like Hamilton in Monaco back in 08 where he got that puncture, went in before everyone else and then went on to win the race.

        2. You’re missing (the glaringly obvious) point that Hamilton could have finished 3rd if not 2nd if his team hadn’t let him down again.

          He would have gotten there on his own performance rather than a lucky call.

          1. Richard was trying to point out that Hamilton should have used his own judgement like Button, rather than need the team to make the decision for him. They let him down, but Hamilton technically could have made the right call himself.

        3. EXACTLY a victim of his own lack of thinking & assertiveness on the hoof and a result of being in the team for so long and being used to / able to question & compute strategy calls for himself – too reliant on the people on the “Pratts Perches” on the pit wall – do you think Alonso/Schumacher/Button would have accepted that call no questions asked ? – nope experience is obviously a wonderful thing and the lack of it done Hamilton today – on the bright side he now has a bit more of it to store away for use later in his career – but he may mentally question every decision they make now which will not be good for his surprisingly fragile state of mind – as Coultard alluded to it is a definite chink in his armour he needs to address.

          I loved the bit where Alonso told his team “I don’t want to know” when they were giving him info on how quick Hailton was closing in on him :)

          Masterful Performance by Button lets hope it shuts up a few of his doubters – although how much further proof do they need to admit he is a ballsy class act !

          A World Championship, decisive overtaking whilst under intense championship chasing pressure & now sublime strategy calls & the nuts to override his teams decisions if he thinks it’s right to.

          1. “I don’t want to know” that was one of the funniest things in a long time.

      7. OK well this is just trolling and I don’t really know where to start with this but here goes:

        The drivers are treated equally, if one of them is favoured, it’s more likely to be Lewis. The controversy in Aus last year was more due to Dave Ryan and just a bad call by the team to let Trulli through. Hamilton did mislead the stewards but the issue originated with the team. Therefore there wouldn’t be any attempt at payback, which they wouldn’t do anyway as it costs them points and consquently money. Which is also why the won’t get rid of Lewis because he’s a great driver who brings them wins and money. Also he’s not going to want to leave because, despite the occasional mistake, McLaren are one of the top teams on the grid and all teams make errors from time to time.

      8. are you the type of fan that in 2007 said that mclaren gave the same shot to alonso and hamilton? I guess yes.

        1. I don’t agree one bit that the team did it to favour Button but I know if it was the other way round everyone would be saying it was team orders and rubbish.

          Alonso and Hamilton both did amazing to come through the pack and were brilliant. Vettel drove a good race but again it looks like reliability is going to stop him from being champion :(

          1. COTD for me. Absolutely on the money.

        2. exactly…. good point.. I think MClaren have switched to Jenson…

      9. Hamilton was destroying his tyres trying to get past Kubica, hamilton is not a driver who is known for being able to preserve his tyres, as spirited as his performance was. If they didnt pit him he would have been passed by the ferraris at the rate he was destroying his tyres and then a pit stop would have put him back further.

        1. Wrong. Hamilton learned how to preserve his tyres. For instance Brazil 2009?

          1. The fact is.. he was destroying his tyres. we are merely stating the fact that he just was. Lewis can preserve them, but not at the rate he was driving.
            Yes, Button did destroy his inters because of his inability to cope with changes/imbalances in his mclaren spaceship, and that doesn’t make button the better driver either.
            and i agree that he would have atleast came 4th or 3rd. But the fact of the matter is he was destroying his tyres and there was still the chance the prancing pony could have pounced at him, causing someone else to plow him into the sandtrap.

          2. Hamilton hadn’t destroying his tyres. Which is exactly why he was so upset that they made him come in for new ones!

        2. I’m tired of all this drivel, and of Hamilton’s moaning. Anyone with Formula One experience could see that both rear, and the left front tyres on Hamilton’s car were visually going off. Had he not gone for the third set, he most likely would have not finished due to a puncture or de-lamination. Had Hamilton managed to nurse the second set to the end, he would have ended up being so slow that he probably should have finished exactly where he did. Follow the lap charts (live T&S) when viewing.

          That is all…

      10. You know what these claims that McLaren would deliberately handicap Hamilton to help Button remind me of?

        All those people in 2007 who said McLaren deliberately handicapped Alonso to help Hamilton.

        And they’re just as wrong now as they were in 2007.

        Here’s the thing: both McLaren drivers drove utterly brilliant and completely different races.

        Button took a big gamble, called it exactly right, and it paid dividends. He also got a bit lucky with Vettel’s retirement.

        Hamilton was formidable in attack, passed loads of front-running rivals and kept it clean all the way. He also got a bit unlucky because the team messed up his strategy.

        That’s what happened. The conspiracy theories are garbage.

        1. I could not have agreed more Keith,

          Conspiracy theories are merely rubbish; Teams have the best intention in giving their driver the best possible result. It was a hard decision and the team merely chose the wrong option out of the two and so the outcome then infuriated it’s poor victim.

          It may be a tad idealistic but it’s arbitrarily professional. and Mclaren is a professional team at that.

          And following the telemetry: Jenson after a short burst of purples, played it smart and patient backing off from greens whilst following vettel and conserving his tyres for another 50 laps.

          Lewis on the other hand lit up the screens trading blow for blow with the local hero, making for a spirited clash of heroes.Both drivers rode exceptionally in their own way.

        2. Too right.

          To tell you the truth I really don’t get what all of the fuss is about here. I’m guessing the team brought in Lewis because they thought (quite reasonably too at the time) Ferrari and Renault would do likewise and they didn’t want him to be stuck in Kubica’s dirty air (and damaging his tyres in the process).

          It does remind me of Hockenheim 08′ when they did pull in Hamilton too late after the SC and he ended up 4th or so with about 20 laps left – now that was a far more clear cut error on the part of McLaren.

          1. It does remind me of Hockenheim 08′ when they did pull in Hamilton too late after the SC and he ended up 4th or so with about 20 laps left

            Yeah it’s a lot like that – here’s the write-up of that race for anyone who may not be familiar with it: Lewis Hamilton wins despite strategy blunder (2008 German GP review)

          2. Hockenheim 08 was another example of Hamilton not being able to to look after his tires. Turkey 08 where he was the only 3 stopper and China 07 are also examples. Lewis is brilliantly quick and aggressive but there is a price to be paid for his style. Too bad he can’t put the brakes on his mouth as quickly as on the car.

            Alonso, when asked after the race if he was held up by Massa said no, he had simply used up his tires carving thru the field and had nothing left. True or not, it was a classy response to a frustrating situation.

            Hamilton is an unbelievable natural talent but I question whether he has the intelligence to be an all time great. Arrogance and entitlement seem to have corrupted his mind. Win as a team, lose as a team!

          3. Seems to me as though, If Mclaren thought that all the cars would pit again, then to pit Hamilton early makes perfect sense, as we all know how pitting early gives an advantage nowadays…

        3. Agree with you Keith, maybe you should touch on this during the race and lap analysis?

          It would be interesting to know exactly the lap times the guys running in 2nd to 6th were setting and whether if there ever was a realistic chance for a McLaren 1-2…

          1. Time wise obviously Hamilton could have made up the time, but getting past 3 cars in a few laps is incredibly unlikely.

            Hamilton’s engineer must have thought everyone was still coming in for new tyres.

            Guess that’s what you get when you give people a brand new engineer instead of the one he worked with for years already.

        4. bernification
          28th March 2010, 17:50

          Totally correct Keith.

          I thought it was a strange idea at the time, as Lewis tyres were showing no signs of going off and he had caught and passed everyone up until Kubica.
          But McLaren had no idea, as did no-one else, about how the tyre wear would progress or the likely need to change again, and hedged their bet.
          In Hamiltons early carrier he did wear his tyres harder than his team mates, but that does appear to be in his past, but I can see why the more risky strategy was given to Hamilton.

          Button is regarded as one of the easiest drivers on his tyres, and if they had pitted him he would not been in the position to profit from Vettels retirement.

          McLaren took a gamble and unfortunately for Lewis it didn’t pay off.
          Great win for Button, and thank you Lewis for the entertainment.
          No thank you Webber for proving time and time again what you are- a talentless whinging aus.

          1. “I think there’s reason to suggest that if he hadn’t stopped we could have had a one-two.

            “So if Lewis didn’t feel disappointed and frustrated about that, I’d be worried.” Martin Whitmarsh Team Principal Mclaren (not some under informed coach potato somewhere on the globe). Point is they missed out a 1-2 and they know it. As a professional outfit, those kind of errors should not be cropping up after so many years of experience.

          2. The only wrong thing from the McLaren team was this: They thought the others would pit also for new tyres but they didn’t.

        5. theRoswellite
          28th March 2010, 18:01

          Exactly Keith….that’s all it is. McLaren want both their drivers to do as well as they can, always.

          Any talk of favoritism simply displays a lack of knowledge about how the team operates.

          However, someone should point out to Lewis that airing his frustration over the radio…when there is nothing to be gained by it…displays a definite lack of maturity and professionalism.

          It only adds to his less than memorable weekend.

          1. True but I think we should underline once again that his driving was absolutely top-drawer today. His moves on Massa, Webber and Rosberg were aggressive but clean passes against first-rate opposition. And if Webber hadn’t hit him it looked like he was set to go past Alonso who’d gone into the corner a bit deep.

            Maybe it doesn’t justify him getting angry, but I can understand why he was.

        6. agree on this year. And both are british so, the british media is not getting too much involved.
          In 2007 was different. Not at the beggining of the year, but there were some tings at the end of the year with tyre pressures that made you wonder.

        7. a bit lucky??, no way was he going to catch or pass vettel, get real Keith

        8. ^ this for next Comment of the Day!

          1. (for Keith’s original comment, not the one above!!)

      11. Give it up please. We don’t need anyone starting the Alonzo “Hamilton is favoured” BS with Button.
        The engineers make the calls not the team and Button’s guy was smarter than not only Hammi’s guy but it would seem the rest of the field save Vettel.

        1. Mouse_Nightshirt
          28th March 2010, 19:05

          Well, in reality, he was smarter than Vettel too. If he had driven as well, he wouldn’t have gone off on T3 and would have been ahead.

          That would have made things very very interesting!

      12. If Hamilton had pulled his finger out in quali he wouldn’t have been in this position in the first place.

      13. @cabbagesVScarrots

        Don’t be ridiculous! I am a huge lewis fan but I am afraid I can not believe that anyone thinks that it was a deliberate attempt to stunt lewis. It was a strategy mistake which could have come off if the others had needed to pit. All the teams are still learning about the tyre wear so I am sure they will not make the same mistake again. However I remember quite clearly the opposite happening a few years ago when they should have brought hamilton in but did not and his tyres were destroyed. There is no chance on earth that Maclaren would purposely ruin the chance of a 1-2 finish!

      14. Really? Do you honeslty believe that? Hamilton is used to things going his way and he has become a spoilt brat. It was on the team’s interest for him to finish on the podium and do as well as possible

      15. Nick Someone
        29th March 2010, 16:32

        cock-up or conspiracy? :-)

        I’m going to spuriously make up a statistic:

        97% of all perceived conspiracies are cock-ups.

    3. Airborne Williams Cap
      28th March 2010, 17:19

      I’m not so sure it was a mistake – I guess if the Ferraris have pitted as well, Lewis’s earlier stop would have been called great strategy.

      1. I don’t see why Hamilton should be fuming after this strategy mistake, he’s the one driving the car, he’s got plenty of experience, he should be making that call if he feels the decision to change tyres is wrong. In the other McLaren Button dictated the strategy to the team early on and won the race. There’s no conspiracy, Button was just the smarter driver.

        Hamilton is a great driver, but he does seem to lack that racing savvy that Button and in particular Alonso seem to have.

  2. Button wins the most exciting race in formula one history..but my driver of the day is the other maclaren driver “lewis hamilton”.we started the race at 11th ..passed the whole field inclding button upto 3rd,.stuck behind robert kubica..and due to wrong call by mclaren he went behind at 6th place…to add webber hit him…according to hamilton ‘McLaren wrecked drive of my life’..indeed true..

    1. Driver of the day: Alonso, come on boys, last position at the first lap and managed to finish 4th. Be serious and less fanatic :)

      1. ..what he said! Ok, I´m a Scuderia man myself. But Alonso did the drive of the race. After what happend in turn1 & how he managed to drive with those tires, that is IMHO just awesome driving.

        1. Alonso driver of the day…what a joke. Who did he actually go past apart from people in inferior cars, once he caught up the pack which any driver in that Ferarri would of, he couldn’t get past his team mate, who was struggling to keep the car on the track.

          At least Hamilton went past people at the tight end, Webber, Massa, Rosberg, Button!!!!

          Driver of the day was Jenson…he won didn’t he!

          1. Yeah, but Hamilton still couldn’t pass Alonso.

          2. Actually, if you look back at when Webber hit Hamilton, Hamilton probably would have got past Alonso then if it hadn’t been for Webber.

            Alonso had braked too deep into turn 13 – so much so that Rosberg almost got him into the next turn. If Webber hadn’t hit Hamilton I think Hamilton would have passed Alonso very easily into turn 14.

          3. Dude..whatever the case, even if Alonso didn’t pass drivers in the deep end..he still ended up ahead of Hamilton..says a lot in my opinion.

            In football, winning 1-0 and winning 5-0 is the same thing. In this case, finishing ahead of the guy behind you gets you more points, doesnt matter how you got there, it just matters that you did.

            Lewis drove really well, albeit the cars he passed were coasting on ice with terribly worn out tyres, but then again, those were their problems. Those of you who think that Hamilton could have done better if he didnt pit, dont kid yourselves, there is no way he could have made his tyres last. I would have loved it if he proved me wrong, but not a chance.

            The way he was driving, the tyres would have eventually let up.

            Its funny how the word conspiracy goes hand in hand with Lewis and Mclaren..whats that all about?

          4. But when deciding on driver of he day it is not as straightforward as the higher the driver finished the better they were.

            To use your football example the man of the match isn’t always the one who scores the goals and they might not be on the winning team.

      2. Kubica was my driver of the day, Alonso and Hamilton were both impressive, but made mistakes.

        1. +1 for Kubica.
          2nd in the 5th(?) best car, thats a great drive!

          1. Aye, very similar to his drive in Brazil last year, here’s hoping Renault’s big upgrade brings them up to at least Mercedes pace so he can keep up there.

        2. It’s not a bad call – Kubica was rock solid in a limited car all day. Jenson’s decision to go on the dry tyre surely earns him driver of the day though?

          1. Apart from that decision his race wasn’t that special though, he had a comfortable second position until he inherited the lead, whereas Kubica had to defend the whole race from Hamilton and the Ferraris.

        3. Kubica done well today but to be fair he didn’t have a lot to do, he was under a bit of pressure from Hamilton for couple of laps and done well to hold him off. Good drive thought in an average car.

      3. David Watkins
        28th March 2010, 10:46

        lol

        No I’d still go with Kubica. The safety car did help get Alonso back to the lower-middle order but he picked them off nicely.

        For me the driver of the day is Kubica. Solid as a rock

        1. *request Kubica youtube tribute with ‘solid as a rock’ soundtrack :D

      4. Wholeheartedly agree-Alonso faught Lewis off bravely protecting his teammate Mass & assuring a 3+4 ….well done…you have my respect Alonso !

        1. Alonso is one of the braver drivers — not as ballsy as Hamilton, though — but surely in this case he was protecting *his* position, not his team-mate’s?

          I’m a big fan of Alonso’s driving, but come on.

          1. it has to be button. He is the winner after a perfect race, and a smart pit stop. Vettel, Alonso kubica, hamilton all did a very good race. No complaint about drivers this year. F1 just needs a few small changes to get, where we all want it to be.

        2. bravely protecting his teammate Massa

          Yeah, I’m sure that’s what he was doing. Because Alonso loves it when he finishes behind his team mate.

          Sarcasm, of course.

          1. If he had successfully overtaken, Massa wasn’t going to hold off Hamilton for more than two turns or something. Ferrari loses a position there, for the chance to have a go at Kubica, that might or might not work. He said so himself after the race, after he hit 4th the goal was to bring the points home.

          2. Tralfamadore
            28th March 2010, 19:59

            >Because Alonso loves it when he finishes >behind his team mate.

            Pretty sure he doesn’t, but he has learnt to keep his cool about it. In the interview after the race he was quite the sportsmanlike teamplayer. A definite improvement since his McLaren (“no longer a team”) year.

      5. Yes, but Alonso benefited from 9 DNF’s (not counting Vettel)! Lewis’s final position was more extraordinary given that he was up to 8th on the first lap, fought his way to 3rd, pitted, ended 8th again, and fought his way to 5th, before being rear ended by Webber. It is trully a testament to his driving that his 6th position is considered a disappointment – given he started 11th!

    2. Great race all round. Pointless bad tempered hotmouthing from Lewis after what seemed like a growth in maturity last year. More gonzo overtaking from Webber costing himself and others points, masterful driving from Alonso from dead last, Red Bull’s car fails again while they blame a supplier, Massa struggles to a better result than his race performance might have warranted, and Button fixed his self imposed qualifying/starting with a great race.

      Unpredictable in some ways, business as usual in others! What was telling for me is that both Brawn and Whitmarsh have effectively both commented “Wasn’t sure about Button before, but now he’s in the team I’m bloody impressed”. Speaks volumes about a driver. I think Button will have made a lot of friends in McLaren today – when he had problems, he didn’t finger point or lose the cool, he raced well, he was intelligent, and he mad the team look good today. Teams like that.

  3. I was really thinking that Jenson/Kubica/Massa/Alonso would have had to pit, in which case Lewis would have won! But they’re so durable. :/

    Anyway, great win for Jenson, but Lewis will beat him in the championship, I’m sure of it.

    1. hmm maybe, I think Button was altogether more canny today. Being the fastest doesn’t mean best. Prost wasn’t fastest, but he was best.

      1. senna was the best… abd the fastest.

      2. Common mistake, but it was usually Prost who had the fastest lap while Senna was the consistent driver.

        1. P1 at the flag = fastest guy. No point being P2 and posting FL, is there?

  4. Hindsight is a great thing but Button got a say in strategy so Ham probably has a say in his and he really could have just said no.
    He put in a stunning performance, it was a disappointment for him but if he thinks he knows better then he should say so on the radio.
    Ham’s tyres were getting a bit worn after the 2nd stop so whether he could have even gone the distance is another question.
    Nice to see some passion but it really is directed the wrong way in my opinion.

    1. Yeah but it seemed like his crew suggested that the cars around him were going to pit as well and that by pitting himself, at that time, he might get the jump on them. Yes he could have said no but I don’t think it’s unreasonable for Lewis to think that his crew were giving him accurate imformation. That pit stop cost him a pretty much guaranteed third place, possibly second; his tyres didn’t look that trashed. I think the team is exactly who his frustration should be directed at.

      Button only made the call because he was going backwards on the inters and so took a gamble because he thought he had nothing to lose.

      1. Other drivers struggled on inters but weren’t as brave as Button. His gamble still could have gone very wrong had he crashed into a wall.
        Thing is though, loads of drivers had the opportunity to pit again and only Lewis did. The team give guidance and provide the information but Lewis is still at the cockpit. I don’t think Lewis is a clever driver like Alonso or Button and his team did sort of make a mistake but it’s a team that have also ehlped him win with their quick thinking; Monaco 08 as an example. Mistakes are made but Lewis has to take some respinsibility and I do that he’s understand he’s frustrated after a great performance.
        Plus I stand by my point that after he came out, his tyres were beginning to wear again which was heightened by the aero behind Alonso but would he really have it made it the rest of the race without a pit?

        1. Terry Fabulous
          29th March 2010, 11:09

          Good Point Steph.. He must have some sort of say in what is going on.

          And he has to be able to take the good with the bad. Remember when they pitted him on like lap 2 at Interlagos last year and he thought it was a dumb idea. He got a podium that day!! And it could so easily have worked for him here.

          I think he just needs to chill out a bit, stop talking about it and get his head ready for Sepang.

    2. I remember Lewis being told no to a strategy decision last year that he did not like. The team was fairly rude on that occassion telling him they were in charge of strategy and he in charge of driving. Much as some of us tried to bring it up for debate on several sites, the mods were not interested. Lewis ought to realise that something natural about him attracts controversy. He needs to reduce his media profile – currently, its like s**t to flies! There is no way he can win a PR contest with Button in McLaren – he should know that and change strategies. Otherwise from what i see, the media will be labelling him a misguided out of control nervous wreck by the end of the year.

    3. Button’s call to change to slicks was more of a driver decision as he would know the track conditions better than the team.

      The call to bring Hamilton in was based on the team seeing others come in such as Schumacher, Rosberg and Webber and thinking that the rest of the top cars would need to.

      We have to remember that with no refuelling it is not better to stay out as long as possible as it used to be, and if those around you are going to change their tyres as well it is probably better to get your stop done first.

      McLaren may have gone for the tactic of splitting the strategies or they may have thought because of track positions and time gaps Button had a bigger cushion so they could leave him out and see what the rest did but that they couldn’t take that risk with Hamilton.

  5. It looks to me that Hamilton should look at his ability to care for his car before he starts pointing his finger at his team. And what is with his radio transmissions during the race? Grow up and drive the car.

    1. Last year Button did this in Hungry, stop having a go, seriously Lewis was fairly brilliant today. Many passes against fast cars, was robbed of second. You would be so angry, really just consider if it was you. Then ask him to grow up.

      1. I agree Hamilton drove an exciting race, but he was hardly “robbed of second” as he lost it with his poor tire management.

    2. Turns out Whitmarsh agrees with him that they could have got a 1-2 if they had not pitted. Obviously i believe Whitmarsh over you Baum, which would mean that there is nothing for Lewis to do about his tires that he is not already doing. I doubt he would listen to you if you told him to his face.

  6. It’s the one regret I have about the race. If he carried on I think he would’ve taken Kubica and there would’ve been a great battle between two team mates of him and Button towards the end. I’m disappointed as an F1 fan in general, a McLaren fan and a Hamilton fan.

    1. “I think he would’ve taken Kubica”
      Don’t be so sure, he was trying for a few laps and he had much better car than Renault.

      1. He probably would have passed Kubica in the end and he might even have been able to catch up to Jenson – but at the time it looked reasonable to suggest Kubica would have been stopping anyway, giving Lewis the chance to pass in the stops and get a move on sooner.

        This sort of strategy call only looks bad after the event when it’s gone wrong!

        1. He would have passed Kubica or destroyed his tyres trying!

  7. I think Hamilton was stitched up today due to a terrible decision by the engineers. I’m not taking anything away from Jensons win, he deserved it but Hamilton desereved a lot more. Mclaren could have taken a 1-2 today had it not been for that poor strategy.

    Looking at the results from todays pole, I think Hamilton contributed the most to a fantastic race, I would have scored it a 10 if he had finished on the podium.

    I just hope he doesn’t throw his toys out of the pram and gets on with his job, at the end of the day everyone makes mistakes and he just needs to get over it. Remember Spa last year, he had banked 3rd place and made a mistake, I don’t think the team deserved that, but like I said we all make mistakes, its how you overcome them.

    1. apologies I meant Monza…

    2. “Hamilton desereved a lot more”
      well Alonso and Vettel also desereved a lot more but this is racing.

  8. Prisoner Monkeys
    28th March 2010, 9:55

    You know, if Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton had each experienced the other’s race, you’d all be calling Button foolhardy and Hamilton masterful. But no, here it’s a case of Hamilton getting screwed out of a victory and Button simply being in the right place at the right time.

    What are you going to say in the event that Button beats Hamilton in the end-of-year standings?

    1. Agree. Drivers discuss strategies with the teams, they took different routes and one worked the other didn’t. Good on Button.

      1. I don’t think going 50 laps on options would have worked with Hamilton, he tends to be more aggressive on his tires and the team probably didn’t want a repeat of Shanghai 2007…

        1. Oh come on i am tired of this Hamilton is bad with his tires s**t!

          1. You should re-watch the race…

  9. Alex Cooper
    28th March 2010, 9:55

    I’m surprised by Lewis’s reaction. A brilliant drive though it was, his wheel to wheel dicing wrecked two sets of tyres while Button looked after his one set of slicks.

    You could see the differing wear patterns between the two McLarens. Lewis pretty much HAD to pit for new rubber.

    1. Exactly, Lewis driving was VERY strong, but the reaction to the team & the radio traffic is not in order. The team didn´t execute him over the air at Monza! You win as a team & you loose as a team.

    2. hamilton lost the gp on q2, and button won it with a decent qualy, right pit stop, good pace, and some luck.
      You deserve the victory, great drive.

  10. I wonder why people assume that, while not not pitting, Hamilton would have passed Kubica. He wasn’t able to do so before tire change and was prone to mistakes more than the driver he was trying to pass. Unfortunately a little bit blinded Lewis’ fans don’t see that simple fact, that Lewis is still a nervous driver and gets frustrated (thus, making mistakes) much more easily than the cool-headed Pole. Sorry guys, but passing top driver in a machine relatively closely matched is not so easy for Hamilton as you all think.

    1. Totally agree. Lewis is not a mistakeless-winning-machine as many blindly see. He did stupid things in history, he did some silly things this weekend too. He’s quick but has to grow up.

  11. wong chin kong
    28th March 2010, 10:06

    Hamilton fuming for the lost positions is understandable because he drove a fantastic race, only to be let down by stupid team strategy. Remember last year Rubens was hoppin mad when he lost a chance to win the race when Brawns get him to run 3 pit stops and Jenson won the race on 2 pit stops. I am sure this unfortunate thing will not be repeated in the races ahead.

    1. I do remember that and I also remember everyone saying that Rubens was being ridiculous, including Rubens. It’s foolish to say that “team strategy” has nothing to do with the drivers decisions and that Lewis was let down by the team – he could have stayed out. The only let down for Lewis was Webber’s over-optimistic move at the end of the race.

  12. Not really Lewis’ team now, is it.

    Good job to Jenson.

    1. Right. And this is the right source of all those nervous reactions during and after the race…

    2. Maybe having that feeling is why Lewis was as upset as he was!

      This guy gets his WDC while having a superior car, gets into the team, the team changes race engineers for both.
      Then the police bothers him for having a little fun in the car, he gets blocked in qualifying so does not make it to Q3.
      And in the end the team makes him pit instead of keeping him out and lose him a podium at least.

      I hope Lewis puts it behind him, before this kind of thinking gets to him (like Fernando in 07).

      1. your parallels between Lewis now and Alonso 2007 is interesting – does McLaren manufacture these disputes on purpose! All those rivalry marketing videos etc, may be they are just not make believe – may be they are real.

      2. Teams do not make drivers pit. that is not how it works.

  13. Looks like mr hamilton showing what a bad team mate he is.
    He couldnt handle it when alonso stuffed him,now button great call had better tactics than him,and looked after his tyres.
    Daddy-better control your son s.o.s to anthony LOL

    1. Strange choice of username…

    2. I thought Hamilton was very respectful of Buttons win and he seemed genuinely happy for him. I don’t think Hammy was being a bad teammate to Jenson, if that is what you were trying to say.

      As far as the radio transmission goes, well, it was in the heat of the moment and I found it a little bit harsh and annoying, but he was emotional and was having a great race, so probably not the best choice of words. I am not a huge fan of Hammy’s, but it’s always good to see drivers getting emotionally invested in what they are doing….

  14. Such a baby! Lewis must trust his team on this. Again his aggressive driving bit him back from the Webber melee. He needs to be more patient like Alonso (from 3rd-20th-4th place).

  15. Hamilton would have destroyed his tyres, if he was on Button’s strategy. So in that sense, McLaren in my opinion, sort of made the correct call. Though maybe they should have waited a bit longer to pit him.

    1. David Watkins
      28th March 2010, 10:48

      That would have put him behind Webber and Rosberg, who had pitted earlier.

      If anything they pitted him too late

    2. i agree. He is just frustrated when things don’t go his way, and button winning makes it even worse.

    3. Even Martin Whitmarsh said it was the wrong decision when he was interviewed after the race, so your assessment is 100% wrong.

      1. There are afew myths that i noticed this weekend:

        Myth 1: McLaren is Lewis Hamilton’s team. This was always a myth that has finally been proven as such. It may be too early times yet, but there is a good seat at Mercedes that he can take up in 2011. With Brawn, he’d rule. I am sure his dad was making calls over the weekend.

        Myth 2: Lewis destroys his tires. This has been a myth for a long time now but Lewis slammers need this myth to comouflage what they really mean.

    4. What nonsense. Hamilton was faster than everyone around him until he was called into the pits.

      And speaking of tyers, wasn’t it Button that destroyed his intermediates first after being passed by Hamilton ;)

      1. @ S Hughes

        It’s just my opinion, nothing more, nothing less. Just because Martin Whitmarsh’s opinion is different doesn’t mean I am wrong. We will never know what would have happened if Hamilton stayed out.

        1. Well..that kinda contradicst your first statement…doesnt it?

          1. Which part are you on about?

        2. Correct sir. Hamilton was the only 3 stopper at Hockenheim 08 and the team took the blame for him. I suspect today was similar with Whitmarsh trying to take the heat off a bad weekend for Lewis.

        3. what comes from Whitmarsh unlike you is fact not opinion

          1. Well I disagree with that. There’s nothing to say, that leaving Hamilton out would have meant he would have got a better result.

  16. Captain Caveman
    28th March 2010, 10:27

    just a quick question, did button actually manage any overtaking manouvers on track? i saw him being passed a number of times but can only conclude that his early pitstop was the only differentiator.

    can anyone else confirm? i am looking at the reruns but still uncertain.

    1. I think he did, when he was the only one on slicks and the track was drying, but I don’t think he passed any of the front runners until they all pitted a few laps after him…

  17. I think Lewis has started to realize that Button is no Kova… hence the fume…

    1. totaly agree wit u he has been put back in his place now, seems he really dose need a minder what age is he 5?

    2. I don’t think Hammy’s fuming has anything at all to do with Buttons result. He was ****** because he was third, pitted and was then fifth. His inexperience led him to yell at the team for making a bad decision, but his comments after the race show that he knows that he AND his team made the wrong call. It has happened many times in F1 to many drivers/teams. It’s really not that big of a deal…I think that this particular situation just happens to be escalated because Button/McLaren made a great call and Hammy/McLaren mad a bad call…

  18. It looked like a reasonable strategy call at the time. The BBC commentators (including Martin Brundle) were certainly under the impression that the Ferraris would be sitting ducks. Alonso was even on the radio asking why Ferrari hadn’t called him in. Hamilton was gaining on the Ferraris so quickly it appeared that he’d have one or both of them fairly easily – he’d certainly passed enough people earlier in the race when on similarly worn tyres. Hamilton was looking like he was about to pass Alonso – but then Webber crashed into him.

    Had Hamilton not stopped there is no guarantee he would have passed Kubica, who never looked under serious threat from Massa. The Ferraris finished close behind the Renault so would probably have been on Hamilton’s tail. Button was well placed to manage his tyre wear but Hamilton would have been forced into either defending from the Ferraris or attacking Kubica.

    Had Hamilton not stopped and his tyres gone off seriously badly he would have been lucky to finish sixth. Had he made it into Q3 he might have won the race…

    1. Hamilton was virtally past Alonso when Webber rammed him out.

      Alonso completely missed the corner and was standing still while Hamilton was moving to the inside of him still rolling.

      BTW this again makes me wonder why did Hamilton got penalized in Fuji while Alonso pulls the same stunt here …

      1. At best Hamilton was alongside Alonso on the run down to the corner, but on the outside line. While Alonso goes into the corner deep, Hamilton appears to have backed off slightly – presumably to try to get a run on Alonso on the exit. That’s when Webber runs into the back of the McLaren.

        There’s no comparison to Fuji 2008 – Webber was simply too close and got caught out, which is why he apologised to Hamilton and was reprimanded by the stewards.

        1. What’s the point of replying when you didn’t even read what I wrote?

        2. I read what you wrote – I replied to say how I disagreed with it.

          You said Hamilton was “virtually past” Alonso when Webber hit him, but he wasn’t so I explained why you were wrong.

          You made a comparison to Fuji 2008, but I disagreed with it and explained why.

          Why so confrontational, old chap?

        3. Did you see how Rosberg almost made it past Alonso after the accident? Guess not, but Alonso missed that corner by a mile and lost all momentum. Rosberg came from 30 or 50 meter back and actually had to slow down not to ram into the back of (a weaving) Alonso.

          Hamilton would most definately taken that position.

          You made the comparison to Fuji, but you missed that I was comparing Alonso. Why on earth would I compare Webber ramming into Hamilton to Hamilton missing the corner in Fuji?

          For that matter, the first time that Webber rammed into Hamilton in this race was a 100% copy of Fuji 2008. Hamilton got past Webber, but Webber gets back at him by simply not braking and he slides off the track tapping Hamilton’s front wing as he slides by. Hamilton loses momentum and Massa gets past.

          Webber 2 incidents that have landed Hamilton a 10 place grid penalty (punting into the back of Raikkonen) and drive through penalty (missing the corner in Fuji) in one race. Yet Webber gets only a slap on the wrist.

        4. @PatrickL

          I think comparing stewarding decisions from the last few seasons to this season is pointless as they now (finally) have retired drivers on the stewards panel. Finally we have people that are actually qualified (at least to some degree) to make decisions on racing. The stewarding over last few years left me gobsmacked. Lewis penalised for going off track but others escaping, massa taking someone out and that person being punished, drivers punished over and over again for trying to overtake and getting it slightly wrong. Webber was wreckless in the race having almost taken lewis out earlier and making a few excursions of his own. But the hamilton accident was merely webber getting a bit too aggressive in the overtake, he went for a gap that was not really ever there and it is correct that he was reprimanded for it but I am glad he escaped punishment as I really want to see racing drivers race. The only incident that I thought Alonso was at fault for (and should be equally spoken to about) was the first corner when he turned into button, the rest of that race he was just racing as you would expect (and I really do not like Alonso). Massa was the only other that should be spoken to after he wildly weaved in front of button (at least I think it was button) to stop him getting past. I have to say that so far the stewarding has been far better than previous seasons.

        5. Actually I’ve noticed the Stewards didn’t punish anyone, In the past they would have…

          I like it like this, Now drivers can race hard, and risk mistakes without penalty. If a driver makes a **** up, It is his problem, the only exception is when safety becomes a larger issue. Like when Massa (I think) was weaving down the back straight, a crash then would have been , err, not good.

  19. Webber was again the worst driver of the day. That chap makes a real habit of ruining races for other drivers. Although, McLaren had already stuffed Hamilton’s race anyway.

    My driver of the day was Lewis Hamilton, followed by Fernando Alonso. Best two drivers on the grid in my opinion… I love watching them both race. Amazing talent.

    1. what about button and vettel? both perfect races, with different outcomes.

  20. I am gutted by Hamilton’s stop and to top it off Webber hitting him.. But I can’t keep wondering had he stayed out would his tyres last him? After all he complained on team radio after his 2nd stop that his tyres were off, and those were the new ones.. Was the problem only with the new ones, or did he struggle with the old ones as well?

    The team seemed to be confident that he would be able to pass the Ferraris since their tyres were old.. but then Webber hit him.. Maybe they were thinking The Ferraris have got old tyres, Lewis with fresh ones so he’ll be able to get them even though he was complaining about his own new tyres..

    Drivers make mistakes and teams do too, no one should be blaming the other too much and most importantly learn from the mistake.. Things can always be worse, that clash with Webber could have ended his race, at least he got himself a good solid 8 points!

    He deserved a better result for his drive, but this is racing.. Really amazed by Button looking after his car and tyres.. Their decision to pit went from a ridiculous one to a perfect one in a matter of minutes!

    McLaren have made an excellent call and the most important one today as it got them the win, but also may have made a bad one that cost them a 1-2 opportunity, 2 podium finishes, or better points..

    1. David Watkins
      28th March 2010, 10:51

      He and Webber drove the wheels off their cars to reach the Ferraris so no surprise his tyres went off.

      If he’d kept his tyres I think he would have fallen back deliberately from Kubica to preserve them and challenged Massa to trash his own tyres if he fancied a go at overtaking. However Massa looked off form today and dont think he would have been a threat.

      The pit stop was a bad call. End of

  21. Had Hamilton not pitted the best he could have had was third place. Don´t think it was a bad choise piting. Had he overtook Alonso most certainly would have past Massa too.
    The problem for him was Alonso in front and Webber behind him. To win the race he just needed to be as brave as Jenson was. Great drive from Jenson but the man of the day was KUBICA.

  22. Guys! Stop using the verb “to deserve”! It’s embarassing…

  23. I would have thought it’s far more understandable Mr Hamilton getting worked up after the disappointing result in that race than it is all you guys getting equally worked up about Lewis getting worked up!

  24. Hamilton could have won this with one stop only if mclaren had magic tyres only for him that would have lasted. Everyone knows that the two Mclaren drivers are at opposite ends of the tyre wear grid and if Hamilton stayed out he would have not made it to the end. His fast and agressive driving does not suit the new regs.

    1. stop living in the past.

    2. This is incorrect. Button did not manage his tyres better than Lewis – He simply did not overtake, or attempt to overtake anyone, and Moreover, he was not in anyones “dirty” air, so his tyres should be in much better shape than Lewis who fought his way up. Looking at Lewis’s pace before the stop, he would definitely have passed Kubica eventually, and caught up with Button.

      1. ” Moreover, he was not in anyones “dirty” air” But then Hamilton was in dirty air so his tyres were getting worn when he couldn’t overtake Kubica.

        1. In the interview done with Hamilton, it’s obvious he doesn’t agree with that assessment though

  25. I see the australians fans were as gracious in defeat as always…these young men risk their lives (granted for a very attractive paycheque) to provide us with entertainment and thrilling racing, to boo them is a disgrace.

    I imagine it was the minority, but a disgrace none the less.

    1. If you’re referring to the “boos” that came from the crowd when Jenson was handed his trophy, I think you’ll find that was directed squarely at the Victorian premier who was handing Jenson the trophy, not at Jenson.

      It happens almost without fail at every major sporting event where politicians hand over the trophies.

      1. Oh I see, thats fair enough then.

        Just I thought there was also boos when John Travolta also handed over the trophy.

        1. Terry Fabulous
          29th March 2010, 11:19

          Hiya Andrew.

          I was hanging off the fence 15m from the podium yesterday when the trophies came out… The only person who got booed was indeed the premier of Victoria!

          Button got a rousing cheer, he is well liked.

          But the biggest roars where from the tifosi for Felipe, the vocal Poles for Kubica and loudest of all…. For Danny Zuko himself.

          John is LOVED in oz!

    2. there lives? that was more than twenty years ago. They don’t risk anything but their reputations nowadays.

      1. Kobayashi could have easily taken Hulkenberg’s head off if he had struck on the cockpit instead of the engine cover. Risk is less these days but still exists. Massa could tell you that, Henry Surtees can’t.

  26. A very good drive from Hamilton (you really can’t argue against him for driver of the day), who looked to have the measure of Button depsite finishing 5 places behind him. Just the split-strategy working against him today.

    Some sublime passing moves as well. I’d have loved to have seen a show-down between the two Mclaren drivers had Hamilton gotten up into 2nd and not stopped again.

  27. From top 8, to me Schumi was the biggest loser. Awful almost everywhere, slower cars with slower drivers and he couldn’t do anything. This is his last season if he doesn’t improve soon.

    Massa is the the second worse driver. Very slow when compared to Alonso and didn’t really overtake anyone. Lucky Lewis and Mark pitted otherwise there wouldn’t have been a podium for him.

    Rosberg, meeh..nothing special but he’s beating his team mate nicely.

    Webber, had good pace but didn’t overtake many. Shouldn’t have pitted for tires but not his fault as all drivers rely on their teams. The crash with Lewis was though.

    Vettel was great, shame he couldn’t really demonstrate much as he’s very quick in a very quick car. This guy needs to start last )

    Button is not the best driver of the day. Making strategy calls is your team’s job. He knew he would have no chance of podium had he stayed out longer so he pitted. That to me looks like a gamble and not a well calculated decision. Teams make strategy calls all the time because they really have more info than the driver. Apart from the strategy there was nothing, well maybe the fact that Lewis passed him on the same tires.

    Alonso couldn’t have done better with what he was given. I am now in favor of manditory pit stops. the guy was incredibly good recovering from last place. He overtook slower cars, drivers as if they weren’t there. Once he caught Hamilton he couldn’t overtake and then with Massa he didn’t have the tires especially as he knew he would have to defend from Lewis later on. I still think he should have overtaken some fast guys and because he didn’t he is not the driver of the day.

    Lewis is! Clearly made full use of his car, overtook so many really fast guys in really fast cars, even his team mate. He did exactly what F1 fans want to watch. Most of you say this was a perfect race. Why? Was it because Button made a right strategy call? pfff… Lewis clearly deserved to be on the podium. Now the strategy. I cannot believe some of you say McLaren are playing against Lewis. Given the fact that Lewis did so many overtakes before, it wasn’t a bad assumption the he would do a few more with fresh rubber. The car was good, the driver is known for his skill to overtake + clean air. I’m sure strategists thought it would be easy to overtake Ferraris. What nobody knew is if medium compound tire can hold for 50 laps. Now we do but that’s the first time we ever saw cars running so long on them so can’t blame the team. If I were Lewis I would be angry too. I will not direct that anger at someone but I will be angry. He knows how good he is and we cannot possibly know what it feels like to lose at something you know you’re best in.

    I just hope he keeps on racing the way he does.

    1. Good post. I agree with what you say. (I had to add that second sentence as apparently 2 words is too short for a post :))

    2. “Button is not the best driver of the day. Making strategy calls is your team’s job.”

      And the team failed to do their job for Hamilton, so looking back on it, Button was right to take matters into his own hands and take the gamble.

  28. Yet again terrible strategy ruins Hamilton’s race, by my count thats 6 catastrophic errors by McLaren, undoing great races from LH. Getting very annoying. His tyres were clearly OK, and he would I think have taken 2nd.

    How can Webber still be at Red Bull, hes so out classed by the drivers around him. Just makes tons of excuses when he dosnt get a result, nearly every race, and Vettel hammers him with a fraction of the experience, and xcant judge braking points.

    What a great race, congrats to JB, impressive strategy and reading of the race, JB seems one of the most cunning and smart drivers out

  29. Normally Mclaren make good calls for Hamilton, but i thought if they overestimated the tire wear on his car… but having said that… i’m sure Hamilton now knows how Heikki Kovalainen felt for last two seasons.

    1. Wait what? Heikki knew he did all he could but lewis was better.

      Now Lewis drove a better race except results don’t show that.

      1. true, but Heikki got all the B grade race strategies & Lewis enjoyed most of the attention… this is prolly the 1st time he got a B grade pit call compared to his team mate..

        1. The team weren’t faced with a hard choice, it’s not like they had 2 guys on the same strategy running close together. The gave Hamilton the best, from their perspective.

  30. For me Alonso was the driver of the race. Finishing 4th from being over 10 seconds behind the guy in 19th seems pretty amazing to me.

    1. David Watkins
      28th March 2010, 12:17

      Not considering the safety car and the slowness of the second half of the grid.

      1. Doesn’t matter. He put Schumacher to shame.

        1. David Watkins
          28th March 2010, 13:45

          Well that’s true. Go De Grassi. Great moment

  31. Lewis only went from 11th or 6th…..

    In that time he ruined 2 sets of tyres, the first was while he was hammering to catch up and caused the stop he needed too take and then winged about.

    The second was ruined when he caught the ferrari. Clearly its still impossible to follow a car closely in the dry as it causes epic understeer and ruins the tyres.

    For me driver of the day was either Jenson for his intelligent driving and brilliant pit stop. Or Fernando for coming from the back to finish 4th.

    1. This post shows the inconsistency of F1 fans.
      You want overtaking, but overtaking puts more wear on the tyres. Lewis shows everyone what F1 should be about, but we complain he cant manage his tyres. Yes he went through 2 sets, but he made the most(and best)overtaking manoeuvres in the whole race. Overtaking cost tyres – FACT. What is it to be? Overtake, and put on a good show, whilst using more tyres, and people say ur n idiot,or be conservative, don’t push, don’t overtake, manage ur tyres and people say you drove a “brilliant” race? F1 fans, make your mind up!!!

      1. Gigantor – couldn’t have put it better myself.

        I don’t even see any evidence that Lewis had hurt his first set, but in any case you’re 100% right about this.

  32. What a fantastic race. Australia didn’t disappointed me.Great call from Jenson for the tyres, but for me the man of the day was KUBICA second place with Renault fifth best car on the grid RESPECT, yes I know Alonso did great to recover from the last place, and I feel sad for Sebastian Vettel. But what Kubica did with his Renault was great any single mistake defended beautiful against Lewis. Yes and I would like to see on the youtube Solid as a Rock song with Kubica too.

  33. ConcedoNulli
    28th March 2010, 12:24

    If Hamilton had not pitted I don’t think that he would have had the capability to protect his tyres. He lost say 25s in the pitstop and would have still have finished behind Button.

    Jenson had the brain/technical savvy to do the maths to change tyres and drive at 99% to assure a well deserved win. Hamilton likes to think he is an aggressive racer but relies 100%(?) on technical backup from the pitwall. Although Lulu thinks he is Senna reincarnated but there is more to it than wearing a yellow helmet.

    It will be interesting to see the dynamics within McLaren – no doubt there will be lots more teddies thrown out of the Lulu pram.

  34. I’d like to officially complain about this racist and offensive comment.

    1. BTW – you have no problem about me calling a white guy a donkey? Another example of double standards.

      1. There is no way you don’t really understand the significance – you are being disingenuous. Typical.

        1. Britanichris
          28th March 2010, 16:21

          genious, beauty and knowledge of F1 is in the eye of the beholder. I see a lot of you watched the REPLAY yes the REPLAY. Was’nt it a great race ? where were you F1 fanatics at 6am ?

          1. Mouse_Nightshirt
            28th March 2010, 19:18

            Are you assuming this because we’re only commenting now? I only went to bed after the F1 forum after an all nighter!

          2. At 6am? In my bed watching the race on my laptop while posting on the live blog. Thanks once again to Keith and the moderators.

          3. I was watching the race live on my 42″ plasma TV and with my Samsung netbook showing me the F1.com live timimg. At the time McLaren made the call to pit Lewis I thought it was the right move. Schumacher and Webber were flying on their initial out laps and got down to laptimes unmatched in that phase of the race. It was a no brainer to pit. Blame Bridgestone for having an option tyre that can go 52 laps! Go to FIA.com’s F1 media centre and look at the race history pdf file and get informed before posting.

    2. Excuuuuse me, but racism?? As far as I can tell, race has never been mentioned here. And, of course, the fact that LH has made an @ss of himself yet again has nothing to do with his race whatsoever.

  35. I think its stupid t say mclaren did anything to ‘favour’ button..

    mclaren arent THAT stupid..

    its far to early in the season to be making acusations like that..

    mclaren could of had a 1-2 so why would they ruin that to favour button..

    button took a gamble and it payed off. simple as.

    only two races down. there’s still a looooong way to go. i still got my money on hamilton finishing on top on button..

  36. Does anyone seriously believe that Mclaren would sabotage Hamiltons chances? Come on! No, he drove well but again showed his lack of class by sticking out his bottom lip as soon as things aren’t going his way. Teddies should be thrown from the pram in private. If I was Whitmarsh I’m afraid Hamiltons comment about ‘we’ll find out’ who made the tyre call would result in a severe dressing down. He needs to grow up and fast.

  37. no penalties for webber. The new way from the stewards, using drivers to judge, it’s working. We miss you not mosley.

    1. If i remember rightly it was actually a Max Mosely initiative before he left power for this to happen this season.

  38. Britanichris
    28th March 2010, 12:35

    Lewis is one of the greatest in F1 but let’s face facts. With his driving style I reckon he had an even 50-50 chance of finishing with he’s tyres intact and at least he gained points in what, for me, will be a race remembered for years to come. You sure did thrill us Lewis and that’s what F1 is all about mate.
    A lot of fans think Lewis is the better driver in the team, but with their differing driving styles and of course differing circuits to race on, I think at the end of the season there will be nothing in it, as each will come into his own at different venues. Congrats lads.
    Nice one Robert, Fernando, Sebastian amongst others and Is’nt it great for all here to have witnessed a truly great race and now debate about it. It’s got tongues wagging again and that can only be good for F1.

    1. Lewis didn’t get taken off by his own driving style, but by someone else!

      1. Britanichris
        28th March 2010, 13:30

        Hi there, Lewis had the chance to stay out and continue, he could have made a decision like Jenson did but he went along with Mc Claren. He must know that now and either regret not doing so, or realise the odds of himself completeing the race were against him to an extent. Either way he is good for F1 and a nice young man I reckon. Cheers for your reply, Chris.

        1. Wrong! Jenson was given the choice when to come in. It was pre-discussed between him and his engineer. He was informed of the “window”, because his “inters” had gone off, and was told to make the call of when to come in within that window.
          This is different from Lewis’s stop. He was simply called in and he thought it was a normal strategy call, as nothing had been pre-discussed btw him and his engineer or the team!

          1. Britanichris
            28th March 2010, 16:10

            Yes, you are right, I know that now and thank you for posting. I guess F1 fanatics like me “jump the gun” sometimes about something we are passion about. Cant wait to see next race buddy

  39. What a great race, congrats to JB, impressive strategy and reading of the race, JB seems one of the most cunning and smart drivers out

    He is not smart, :-( He was just lucky. Can you imagine what pple would say had his strategy not worked out? And added to that, he made the calls.

    1. I can’t believe people congratulate him on this. He was falling back on intermediates. If he didn’t gamble he would have been knocked out of top 10 soon. He did the only thing he could, pit.

  40. Britanichris
    28th March 2010, 12:39

    Lewis is still a very young man, please give him a break. He will end up being one of the greats

  41. Lewis is kinda pathetic.

    Jenson called his tyre change – that’s what’s called “a sense for a track.”
    If Lewis was so good that he didnt have to come and pit again, he could have called his own strategy just like Jense.

    But, hey the way he chose to do it – he’s immune. Should he have won – it would have been heralded a great drive by him. He suffered a bitter loss – well, suddenly it’s team’s fault.

    what a joke this guy is. and im not even gonna comment about his over the radio tirade. that’s so immature that i can’t believe how this guy is still in F1

    1. also he just cannot take of the tyres, we all know that, and it was painfully evident. sometimes the way he drives seems as if he was playing on playstation, going all gung-ho on his car…

      he was sliding around the track when following kubica midway through the race, no way he would have made it to the podium on that set of tyres

      in fact, Alonso was equally aggressive as Hamilton fighting his way back from 22nd or so, and managed to hold up the tyres till the end.

  42. Wow! Such a lot of comments already.

    And such a great race.

    So we have our solution to F1 and overtaking…
    Just make the track greasy and wrong foot the teams with unpredictable weather!

    :-)

    Yesterday I noticed during Vettel’s superb Q3 run, that ultimately put him on poll, that he struck the left front wheel very hard on one of his exciting excursions over the kerbs. At the time I meant to tweet about that as I wondered if we’d see some problems for his car because of this. Actually I was expecting an early tyre / wheel problem. I have to wonder today if that had something to do with his apparent brake failure. I guess we’ll never know.

    Overall though, I feel sad for Vettel again this week. That was not deserved.

    Credit to Massa for a very good start. I had to wonder at the time if he had jump started. Apparently he simply nailed it. However, his performance behind Kubica and the fact that he requires coaching during a race from his mechanic is/was frankly pathetic. Put Rob himself in the car and see what he can do I say!!

    I feel aggravated for Alonso. Although I have to say that his comment to the team when they were on the radio telling him how close Hamilton was in the closing stages was a classic! And his last gasp defensive manoeuvre against Hamilton which ultimately wrong footed both Hamilton and Webber was great racing. Fantastic stuff.

    I don’t think Massa should have moved over for Alonso. If Alonso couldn’t get past, that’s just the way it is at this stage in the Championship. But Massa is considerably slower, and less able to deal with a challenging race than Alonso. That much is clear. But then it always was.

    Credit to Button for his tyre strategy. Great to hear he called it himself. Respect where respect is due. Congrats for a well deserved win.

    Can’t wait till next week.

  43. Awesome_race
    28th March 2010, 12:47

    Alonso the driver of the day??? really….what a joke….Even i like alonsos style but saying that he was the driver of day is really stupid. The best driver of th day was Hamilton.He overtook the top teams but the second pitstop ruined all his hardwork. Jenson was good….but also lucky, first with the tyre choice…then with some clear air in front of him. Kubica had a great drive as well, managing to hold off the top teams…definitely deserved his 2nd.

  44. Britanichris
    28th March 2010, 12:49

    I do wonder how a lot of drivers these days need a shave and brush up. They have such nice looking women, you’d think they’d look after their appearance a lot more

  45. Britanichris
    28th March 2010, 12:57

    Who’s going to be the first to mention diffusers ? They should be banned in my opinion. Normally during a race they get commented on regularly but not today.

  46. Firestarter007
    28th March 2010, 13:05

    I think its a shame about lewis as he was consistently 1.5s faster that JB and was gonna catch him if he passed Kubica. But Mclaren did not want Lewis on the Podium after his tangle with the aussie police! In Qualifying, he was throttled too. There is no way he could have been that slower compared to Button. All in all, i think lewis was punished and you can see it very evident from the team Principal during the interview.

    Lewis needs a Manager quick and start negotiating a divorce from McLaren. JB is not gonna win them the title…..

    1. To be honest I was a bit surprised with Whitmarsh’s comments. After such a good drive he didn’t say anything positive about Lewis.

      1. Yeah, even when they asked a question about Hamilton’s amazing dreive, Whitmarsh went back to be so happy for Button.

        I wouldn’t be surprised if this weekend later turns out to be the reason for Hamilton to move to Red Bull of Ferrari.

        1. Earlier this month Lulu stated that he had wanted to quit last year over his lies to the stewards about the incident with Jarno.

          What a shame that he didn’t!!!

          And surely Ferrari will NEVER ever want him as a driver

          1. Yeah right. Hamilton is the fastest driver on the grid. Only Alonso would be able to keep up with him, but only on consistency rather than pace.

            You have got to be kidding (yourself) when you think Ferrari wouldn’t love to have Hamilton in their car.

          2. Tralfamadore
            28th March 2010, 19:48

            Haha, it would be kinda fun, ALO and HAM in the same team again.

            BTW Jean Todt reportedly stated that ALO would never make it to Ferrari as long as he was calling the shots in the Scuderia. So it goes.

          3. Fair enough, maybe sometime in the distant future Ferrari might consider lending one of their red beauties to LH… but first he would have to grow up, seriously. Getting from toddler to preteen would not suffice.

  47. Awesome_race
    28th March 2010, 13:12

    How can you say that Jenson made the right tyre call by judging the track (or the sense of track as some may refer)..it was pure gambling and he got lucky that it payed off. Even he himself and most people confirmed that it was a gamble. He himself said later to BBC that he changed his tyres only because he couldnt find the balance with inters and feared he might loose places. i have to agree that he takes good care of his tyres than hamilton.I think hamilton would have never managed to last his tyres like jenson. But again the way hamilton overtook many of the strong cars was just awesome to see. I just get the feeling that most of the people just hate hamilton for no reason. He is one of the best racers on the track along with alonso, vettel, massa and kubica

  48. Britanichris
    28th March 2010, 13:16

    I wonder what’s going on behind the scenes Ivan ? Whitmarsh could have been more positive towards his man, like a pat on the back for a great team effort and a brill drive

  49. I can hear it now in jenson’s 2011 quotes: “I blew Hamilton away”

    This is why Jenson is prooving a match for Lewis since he can use his brain to decide an outcome, a risky choice yes but it worked for him. shame Lewis doesn’t do it since it looks like he is dependent on his pitcrew more then his head.

    1. i agree with jenson using his head..

      but lewis is an awesome awesome driver. i think this race proved it. he isnt scared of taking risks on the track and never gives up. he pushed and pushed right up unitll webber shunted him..

      hamilton is not a ‘that will do’ type of guy..

      one of the few proper racing drivers on the grid IMO

      1. yes he got frustrated and ‘lost his head’ but doesnt that show his passion for racing. he just wanted to do the best he could..

        we all let frustration get the better of us at times..

    2. I don’t agree with Button using his head. It was more that he was lucky that he ruined his intermediates so quickly.

      1. What makes you say he’d ruined his intermediates? Granted, he’d just been passed by Hamilton but there was no sign he was off the pace of the other runners. Looked like a gutsy gamble to me.

        1. JB said himself.
          “There were very strange grip levels out there on the tyre and I was really, really struggling. I could see a dry line appearing in most places and at the rate my rear tyres were going away I knew there must have been enough grip for slicks. I made the call to pit early as I thought if I don’t pit early I am just going to keep going backwards.”

        2. gutsy gamble, more like hurt pride? Hamilton passed him with ease, so Button went to the pits to regain pride, using tyres as an excuse. Theres no justice in F1. Button did not deserve to win, he inherited it of vettel (who was superior) Hamilton showed how much of a better driver he is to.

          1. I am tired of people talking about who “did not deserve” to win, be it a podium, race or championship. Button crossed the line in first place, so he deserved to win the race.

      2. but didn’t he make the call to go in early? because he knew the inter’s were losing grip quickly.

        What I mean by “using his head” he will make his own decisions if needed because jenson knows best for himself no matter what all the computers say.

        Example with role play:

        (lewis/jenson we need you to stay on inter’s for a few more laps, so just hold on.)

        (lewis: Ok….)

        (jenson: No i’m coming in now because i’m struggling, do it.)

        this isn’t the first time having lewis put his faith into his pitcrew over his own driving sense, China 07 comes to mind…. if i’m mistakend.

        1. I think Lewis might well learn a thing or two from Jenson on such matters this season, which will only serve to make him stronger in the future.

          Lewis obviously has the ability to make those judgement calls, but I’ve always had the feeling he respects the team too much sometimes (understandable, given they have guided him long before he made it to F1).

          1. “Lewis (…) respects the team too much”

            I wouldn’t say that listening to his post-race comments!

      3. Lewis wasn’t exactly using his leaving the track friday night.

        but i do feel that it was very Bad Ass, hence respect

  50. I see Hamilton becoming very dangerous and it is only going to get more entertaining. He is rarely challenged in the last 2 years and challenge with Button will bring the best out of him.

    IMO, Hamilton’d drive was far superior than Button’s comparably very uneventful race. Lewis fought hard from 11th on the grid, did lot of overtaking, nice fight with Webber but came out on top and the stupid strategy but still finished 6th and ahead of anyone doing 2 stopper. He should have at least taken 3rd behind Robert.

    Also i think this stupid diffusers should be banned. Some teams are saying now a car behind should be around 3 seconds faster and not the normal 2 seconds to normally overtake.

  51. How Webber did not get punished during this race is hbeyond me. First he rams Hamilton’s front wing and than later he simply rams into the back of Hamilton.

    It’s so often Webber ramming into people. Last year he got punished for this nonsense, but the new stewarding system means that behavior like that is ok now?

    1. Webber’s been given a reprimand from the stewards.

      1. Yeah, I guess that’s something.

        Still, with Webber’s history of avoidable race incidents, one would expect the stewards to be a bit more forthcoming with penaltied to finally end this behavior.

        I guess it’s a good thing they don’t penalize drivers for every accident that happens. It’s just strange that they keep flip flopping the rules about that it’s almost impossible to understand what does deserve a penalty and what not.

        Kubica and Vettel going off, lands Vettel a 10 place penalty. Webber’s move on Barrichello at the Nurburgring 2009 lands him a drive through penalty. Yet, when he causes 2 incidents in one race, all they do is tell him not to do it again.

    2. don’t be a girl. It is racing, and sometimes this kind of things happen. If he keeps doing it every week end, he’ll get some penalty. They are using common sense, let them keep doing it.

      1. I second kowalsky’s statement. I can’t believe the number of comments suddenly suggesting Webber is a reckless driver who always rams into people, the incidents today were racing incidents.

        1. Suddenly? Did you miss the 2009 season?

          1. As far as I recall, there are appear to be more right now than last year, but the main point stands. Today’s incidents were racing incidents, and do not warrant penalties. There is common sense in the decisions made by stewards, unlike 2008.

          2. Common sense maybe, but it’s al very inconsistent with the penalties handed out last few seasons.

            I guess Webber will get his penalty when he inevitaby rams into someone else again.

          3. @Patrickl

            The only thing that was consistent about the last few seasons stewards decisions was their inconsistency!

            I am happy that webber has been given a warning as he was reckless during the race, however I am glad it is just a warning as this is racing and I would rather see people get taken off by reckless moves rather than no one attempting to overtake at all.

            As long as webber is punished if he does the same again (which will obviously happen) then I think it is fair.

            The last seasons have seen drivers punished for trying to race which has just been a farce!

  52. just read this comment from whitmarsh on hamiltons website..

    MARTIN WHITMARSH

    Team principal, Vodafone McLaren Mercedes

    “After starting 11th, Lewis once again showed the grit, determination, passion and bravery that has made him one of the most exciting racing drivers in the world.
    “In less than an hour this afternoon, I think it’s fair to say that he almost single-handedly debunked the much-touted recent theory that Formula 1 has become boring. On the contrary, he entertained millions of people around the world with a series of audacious and thrilling overtaking manoeuvres.

    “While we concede that, with hindsight, it’s possible that we may have been better served by calling Lewis’s tyre strategy differently, we’re enormously encouraged by his never-give-up attitude and his ever-exciting talent”

    1. Shame he couldn’t have said that on the telly!

      1. He did say something similar on TV actually on the f1 forum.

        1. Couldn’t bear watching it as the BBC presenters were so gushing about Button, it put me off my breakfast.

          1. The endless carping about Button is getting very tiresome. If you’ve nothing more worthwhile to contribute please go some place else.

          2. Mouse_Nightshirt
            28th March 2010, 19:14

            Hear Hear Keith!

            I really don’t understand the hostility to either party here. Do you think the German fans are getting this bitter over the whole Rosberg/Schumacher stuff?

          3. I agree with Keith and Mouse_Nightshirt. Plus, a Mclaren fan would support both drivers, even if they prefer one driver over the other. I’m a Ferrari fan who spent years disliking Alonso when he drove for Renault and Mclaren, but as long as he represents the prancing horse, i’ll be his fan.

          4. I’m not a McLaren fan, I’m a Hamilton fan, so why should I automatically be supportive of both drivers?

          5. Oh and Keith, this was the twitter comment from Legard today: “Thank you Melbourne. You did F1 proud. Likewise Jenson Button. How quickly Lewis Hamilton turned on ‘supportive’ McLaren..” No mention of the fantastic drive from Hamilton, except by Brundle. I think it is pretty obvious that there is blatant bias in the reporting on BBC and as a Hamilton fan I should expect non-biased coverage of the race for both British drivers. The fact that it is obviously not unbiased makes me very angry and I’m not the only one to have commented on it. If it was the other way around, I’m sure there would be plenty of moaning too.

          6. If Hamilton wasn’t in F1, would you watch the sport?

  53. Britanichris
    28th March 2010, 13:46

    He deserves a reprimand, he seems a nice sort of bloke but will never be remembered as one of the greats. perhaps Lewis was right, he should retire ? I dont know about that he’s only 35 is’nt he, Michael’s 41. In a different class I know but its not the age is it ? He just loses it under pressure. An Australien form on Tim Henman maybe.

    1. I think Mark webber’s worst enemy is himself, look at last year he does not do himself any favours with clipping people and given himself drive through penalties.

      Being right on sombody’s backside and then shunting them because you came in more aggressive then them is not overly smart.

      webber will be 34 in august btw or so it says in wikipedia, so he still has a few years of F1 left before he retires.

  54. Don’t understand why everyone is having a go at Mclaren for pitting Hamilton, and yet no one is having a go at Mercedes for pitting Rosberg, who was also ahead of Webber and both Ferraris on lap 26, and would probably have got back past hamilton if it hadn’t been for the yellow flags. (just watching the rerun now)

    Webber and Hamilton were both pushing really hard (at times 2 seconds a lap faster than the car in front), and got stuck in the dirty air so many times, i’m sure their tyres wouldn’t have lasted another 25 laps.

    On the data at the time (from Schumacher’s pit stop) the new tyres were giving a significant advantage, and as we saw last time, the first people to stop got an advantage.

  55. Britanichris
    28th March 2010, 13:59

    Yes I know that’s true. Maybe they should both call it a day lol. Lets get rid of anyone over the age of say 28 and let another load of ex carters go out to play. Only joking but can you imagine the thrills and spills ? that would put more bums on seats, from the lesser die hards I might add

  56. Britanichris
    28th March 2010, 14:07

    Does’nt matter what colour we are, we all love F1 so it dont matter

  57. ..so

    after that horrible incident at turn 7.. lets get back on topic

  58. Keith, I’m a little surprised of the tone of the article. Martin Whitmarsh admitted it was the team’s error to bring Hamilton in. The way the article is written, it makes it seem like Hamilton is at loggerheads with his team about responsibility, when McLaren have already admitted to being to blame.

    At least one good thing is that this undermines the whole “Lewis’ team” argument.

    1. it seem like Hamilton is at loggerheads with his team about responsibility

      He was clearly pretty angry from the radio bits they played during the race.

    2. Not the first time they have stuffed up his race. Hockenheim 2008 (they tried to but Hamilton still won through brilliance). China 2007. Australia 2009 – Lewis knew he didn’t have to give the place back to Trulli, but engineers insisted he give it back, thus giving rise to the whole lie-gate shenanigans.

      I don’t think the team give Lewis the benefit of the doubt enough in decisions whereas they let Button do what he wants. Grossly unfair.

      And anyone who blames him for being furious isn’t living in the real world.

      1. Mclaren have made blunders but so have every other team on the grid. Ferrari at Monaco 08 with Massa and Silverstone 08 with both drivers. These things happen and if Hamilton had a problem he could have said so pre-pitstop. Maybe it was a mistake but there’s also the question of whether Hamilton could make his tyres last anyway esp as he was stuck behind Kubica.
        I’m quite annoyed at this whole agrument being blown out of proportion as it really casts a shadow of Hamilton’s brilliant performance and unfairly has a go at a team who has always tried to stick by their driver and give him every opportunity and a team who always -despite criticism and this is something I admire about Mclaren -given their drivers an equal chance to race.
        Oh and I think the whole issue with lie gate wasn’t so much the misunderstanding with the situation but the fact they lied, hence the ‘lie gate’ ;)

      2. Read my comment below. He should have just overuled the decision to come in. End of.

        Now that fuel is not an issue, the driver’s judgement for the tyre condition is crucial.

        1. It’s not as simple as that. It’s not practical to give the driver all the information about what every other driver on the track is doing with strategy (which just for starters would include their pit stops, tyre choices, gaps to all the other cars and how they’re changing) and expect him to make an informed decision. Some of it has to be processed and decided by the team.

          On the other hand, if a driver feels a damp track has become dry enough for slick tyres they are in a better position than their team to make the call. Until some other drivers tries it and starts setting fastest sector times, in which case the team need to be on the case.

          1. Button came in for the early pit stop not because he thought it was a good strategy, but because he had no choice as his tyres were shot. He says so himself on the McLaren.com website. I wouldn’t say it was a good strategic call, more a call of necessity.

          2. You are right of course about it not being as simple. I guess the point I’m making is that Hamilton was very quick to blame his team, and someone looks to have made a wrong call… but I think he has also got used to being told what to do too much… perhaps this discussion highlights a more general trait in Lewis that will come with maturity.

            A great driver as we know should also sometimes tell the team “no, I’m staying out” and I can’t remember Hamilton ever over-ruling a team call in such a fashion because of what *he* himself feels.

            Totally understand the point that sometimes the complexity of the information available to the team far outweighs that which it can transmit to the driver though.

          3. I can’t remember Hamilton ever over-ruling a team call in such a fashion because of what *he* himself feels.

            Fair enough but I’m struggling to think of many examples of other F1 drivers doing that. Except ones who then pulled over because they were out of fuel!

        2. Hamilton can’t overuled a pitspot. Brazil last year they said pit on lap one and he said why, the response was because the boffins said so. He got a good result due to the early stop and said after that the pitcall is his team’s department he just drives the car

          1. More or les what Fernando said after Singapore 2008…

  59. Two years in a row Mclaren manage to screw up Hamilton’s race down under.
    As much as we are happy for Button, his decision was forced on him as his inters were destroyed and no point changing back to the same tyres for a drying track.
    Hamilton was delayed in his first stop and had to make up ground. His second stop took him half a minute back that time had to be made up before any hope of overtaking.
    It was easier for Button to manage his rubber while in the lead but in the first race he destroyed his rubber while following other cars.
    All that smooth driving talk is rubbish, it all depends on your driving position.

    We must also stop reacting to sensational headlines.

  60. I don’t believe the “McLaren deliberately hampered LH” But I will say this. McLaren were very incompetent, inconsistent, and at the time rubbish team with rubbish team boos—-> Martin Whitmarsh. He is a shrewd bad person. every time you listen to his interviews, he try to put the blame on the drivers and the powerless team engineers,for his errors. He dose not want to take blames personally. unlike the other team bosses in F1.

    Just keep an eye on Martin Whitmarsh. And you will see what I mean. I think there is a possibility that LH may living McLaren next year, for the first time in his life. All thanx to the cleaver dodger Whitmarsh!

    1. You know, I am beginning to think Whitmarsh wants to create his own legacy, he doesn’t want to operate in the shadow of Ron Dennis, so in a way he would want Button to go on to win the championship, as that would be something different from the continuity that is Hamilton.

  61. Even im more like his enemie not a fan, i think his right because if he would be in place of Button, he would win :)

  62. David Johnson
    28th March 2010, 16:33

    Really happy Button won, but I can’t believe it is only the great Martin Brundle and a few guys on here, that picked up on the fact Button came in for tyres AFTER being caught and then overtaken by a team-mate in the same car and conditions. ?!!! When I eventually win the lottery, I think I’ll put it down to tactical nous!! I’ll take the Alonso’s and Hamilton’s of this world over the boring time trialists of f1, those two were a credit to F1 today…but they won’t be loved !!!

  63. Hamilton could and perhaps should have overuled the team and said he wanted to stay out. Simple.

    It’s easy to blame the team. This time, Hamilton also has to shoulder some of the responsibilty just like Jenson would have if his call to change to dry tyres early had not of paid off.

  64. Geez Keith, nothing gets your forum buzzing like a good Hamilton story. The man brings the passionate (from both sides) out of the woodwork. You should do a weekly one ;-)

    Nice job as always presenting a balanced story.

  65. Hamilton should be more angry about Mark Webbers kamikaze attack at the end of the race than about his strategy.

  66. Johnny Bravo
    28th March 2010, 18:02

    For me, Sebastian Vettel is THE driver of the day.

    Why? Because he made no mistake. None. Zero. Zip.

    He took the pole – which is NO one else can do. He then keeps leading the race, all the time – which is NO one else can do, too. He did a BRILLIANT, PERFECT job.

    He just had to leave the race because of a brake failure, which is NOT his fault at all.

    1. Up to that point he had done well, but he only set 13th fastest lap and there was a long way to go in that race when he went into the gravel trap.

      1. 13th fastest lap, but that was with a heavier fuel load than most of the faster laps set later on in the race.

  67. Mclaren ruined Lewis’ race. I am so angry right now!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  68. And what’s up with Hamilton crying to the team during the race? So the strategy back fired, do your damn job and drive the car and save that crap for the motor-coach. You can’t win them all Lewis. You’ve been screwed by the stewards, your team, and yourself before. Being on the F1 circuit for 4 years now you’d think he would learn how to handle this kind of thing.

    His raw talent is unmatched on the grid. He’s got to keep his head in the game. Those comments will not get you far in regards to your team. Calling out your team can sometimes give them that chip on their shoulder, give them that fire to prove people wrong. But when drivers do it during the race it shows their lack of focus.

    1. Being on the F1 circuit for 4 years now you’d think he would learn how to handle this kind of thing.

      It should be said that his anger didn’t come across in his driving. There were no rash moves or anything like that. If he’d let rip at his team and then run into Alonso it’d be a different matter.

      I don’t blame him for letting off a little steam in the heat of the moment. I’m certainly prone to doing that.

      1. Mouse_Nightshirt
        28th March 2010, 19:18

        Not so sure about the anger not coming through.

        I was thinking it before Brundle said it, but with the constant attempts to pass at turn one, he was never in position to take advantage of turn 3, which would have been very much the sensible option, at least even to try once.

        1. What does Brundle know about following a 2010 Ferrari into a corner? Brundle might be an ex F1 driver, but he doesn’t always get it right.
          The Ferrari had good traction out of the turn 1/2 section, so just how exactly was Hamilton supposed to get close enough to have any chance into turn 3?
          To think of it, just how much overtaking did Brundle do when he was an F1 driver?

      2. It’s not that his anger didn’t come through, any driver would be getting frustrated at that point. There’s just a time and a place for things. Yelling at your crew during the race because of the bad call is not going to change the situation.

  69. Im really pleased this happened today as it now shows that Lewis does not get special treatment over his teammate. It means Lewis fairly beat a 2 times world champ in his rookie season and hopefully you doubters can now see this. I bet Kovi feels a bit crap knowing it has only taken Butoon 2 races to beat Hamilton in is apparant own team. Lewis did drive a stunning race, many people think he cant manage his tyres, your wrong, had he not been pittd he would have at least finished 3rd and more likely 2nd. Lewis is the man to watch for the title and on tv, he is entertaining and I dont get out of my seat for any other driver.

  70. Of course he’s a bit miffed, he was going to get second! Although the frustration came out having not been able to pass Alonso, if at the time he felt happy enough with his strategy then he shouldn’t have came in for new tyres. another thing that would disappoit him is that the new team mate outperformed him. OH! And a further thing, being dumped of the track when he was going to pass Alonso on the next lap (surely it would have happend!) wouldn’t have done much for his mood.

  71. “But it’s not likely Hamilton’s tyres were in such bad shape that he wouldn’t have been able to keep the Ferraris behind.”

    Is that a joke?

  72. Mr. Zing Zang
    28th March 2010, 21:43

    Hey you, Kieth!

    Read the driver comments on F1.com especially the Kubica’s comments. How can make such a baseless statement that Hamilton destroyed his tyres!

    I know you took time to write the article but please be more informed in the future.

    1. Perhaps you could at least tell me which comments you’re referring to?

  73. of all the comments i read so far about the hamilton ordeal and how he will be throwing his toys from the crib. Is it gonna take someone getting hurt bad for the acts that Webber been pulling the last two seasons? up to that point I thought it was a fantastic race with a few chance on the remaining laps to see something special.

  74. I’m a McLaren fan but people seem to be forgetting that the only reason Button won the race was due to the continued misfortune suffered by Vettel (and the Red Bull team in general). Red Bull really need to work on the reliability of their cars, Vettel should have been World Champion last year but lost out because of his car. I agree that it was a bad judgement by McLaren to pit Hamilton when they did but boy did he go for it afterwards! Just shows the difference the fresh tyres made compared to those out in front.

    1. Vettel should have been World Champion last year but lost out because of his car.

      He made a fair few mistakes as well, at Melbourne, Istanbul and Monte-Carlo for example.

      (More here: Unreliability costs Vettel another win)

  75. Its amazing the number of tyre experts we have on this site.

  76. I truly think the McLaren race engineers did what they did by calling Hamilton in for the 2nd pit-stop because they believed it could have catapulted Hamilton in front of the two Ferraris and the Renault. It would have played out to Hamilton’s favour if Kubica, Massa, and Alonso needed to pit for a second time. But that was not to be.

    McLaren desperately wanted the 1-2 in Melbourne as a morale-booster and to prove the doubters wrong and they took a gamble with Hamilton’s 2nd stop.

    Button’s gamble paid off but Hamilton’s didn’t. It’s simple as that.

  77. Although understandably Hamilton was not happy with the decision for him to make another pit stop, I don’t think the best time to be asking who made the call was when he was trying to find a way past Alonso.

    With hindsight if Hamilton could have made his tyres last he would have finished at least third and may well have managed to get past Kubica. But at the time it was probably the right call if McLaren thought the Ferrari’s would stop also.

    Also from a team point of view it is often a good idea to split the strategies to cover all bases, the downside is that one driver will probably loose out and then you get some people claiming it is favouritism towards one driver.

    The things that stopped the strategy from working were the soft tyres managing to last so long, and the fact that you seem to need to be 3 seconds a lap quicker to overtake (according to Martin Whitmarsh after the race) or hope that the other driver to make a mistake.

    It was a shame that Webber ran into Hamilton in the last few laps as I think it was set up for a good finale with Hamilton and Webber on fresher tyres trying to get past Alonso, Massa and Kubica. Although I would say it was Webber’s fault for the coming together, I would put it down to a racing incident.

  78. With all the praise being heaped on Alonso it should be recognised his spin at turn one was his own fault. He cut across infront of Button who clearly had the line into the corner.

    Lewis did not crash into anyone else, they all crashed in to him.

    His anger on the radio you must remember in his mind would have just been a discussion between him and his team. its only because of the open frequencies that we even get to know about it.

    His media interviews are not that bad, he credits the team for the car etc, just complains about the strategy. I mean its not like all the drivers hop out of their cars and walk up to all their team mates give them a nice hug and a kiss and say hey i love you guys, even if i came 6th instead of 2nd because of a dodgy stategy.

    Lewis had every right to be annoyed, Considering Webber almost ended his race altogeather. All he said was “That was not cool” some other drivers (especially Webber) would be way more colourful that than.

  79. Yes, it was a poor decision. Was it done deliberately? I don’t think so.

  80. In Racing only winner counts as everyone forget the epic battle behind them. Wait a year and everyone says how good Button did to win. look at Spa 2009 everyone know Raikkonnen did win but what happened during the race….

  81. Matt Hubbert
    29th March 2010, 12:49

    Why does there have to be a big conpsiracy?
    It looks like a bad call by Mclaren in hindsight
    Button made a good call and deserved the win.
    Hamilton drove fantastic without reward.Surely he could have made the call to stay out on his tyres?

  82. Schumi_the_greatest
    29th March 2010, 16:27

    Just though id throw my thoughts in on this 1 having read all the comments…be warned this will take a while to read..

    1st of all great drive by jenson a clever win picked up without having the best car, obviously a big element of luck was involved but if he didnt take that risk pitting he wouldnt of done anything he was going backwards on the inters.

    lewis was sensational today, 1 of the best drives ive seen and ive bin watching f1 for 15 years now. Superb overtaking maneouvers and ballsy driving it was great to watch!

    im suprised by how much attention is being paid to his little rant, he had just driven the race of his life only to finish 6th because of a team error, its frustrating, who can honestly say theyve never reacted like this in a similar situation? lewis always thanks the team after every race and last year he kept the teams spirits up when he was driving a truck at the start of the season!

    someone also posted that they think martin whitmarsh favours button because he hired button hed rather him do the winning, well soemthing along them lines! at the end of the day maclaren are not stupid they know that hamilton is potentially on eof the all time greats whu wud MW sacrifice that talent?

    We have to remember that lewis is only in his 4th full season of f1 hes still got things to learn but what he has got is the raw ability and speed. he will get better with experience and it will take another few years before hes the finished article and whn he is hes going to be awesome!i seeem to remember a certain aryton senna still making mistakes when he was at a similar stage in his career (monaco 88 for example)

    ive also read soemone say that hamilton think hes some kind of reincarnated senna – ive seen alot of criticism put to hamilton because of his adoration for senna. I dont understand it because whats wrong with modeling himself on 1 of the all time great drivers? i play football at a decent standard, my favourate player is steven gerrard and as i play the same position as him i do ry and immatate some of the ways he plays the game. i dont see why people get so worked up about it?

    my next gripe is with the perceived favourtism jenson button gets with the british media these days. jenson on his day is a very good driver, but hel never go down as 1 of the greats for the simple reason that he never really performs when the chips are down, i also remember hear him moan alot last year when the brawns advanatage went and he couldnt win races but when hamilton complains about soemthing he becomes a spoilt child apparently? being an f1 fan for the last 15 years i have for the majority of that time not seen alot of very good british drivers, my favourate driver was always schumacher but as a birt i ovbiously wanted the brits to do well, for years our hope rested on the likes of coulthard and irvine and then button who for the majority of his younger career spent more time partying on yachts than anything else. you would always hear the british press bigging up some youngster haliong him our answer to schumacher and senna etc etc

    hamitlon comes along and its clear hes got the potential to be just that but now all he gets is the press on his back anytime he says how he truly feels? but then when he tows the party line and dishes out the usual f1 driver talk lines like “for sure” and “the team did a great job” he gets called a corporate robot…he cant win no matter what it just goes to show how fickle and quite frankly sad the british media are!

    all i would say is hamilton has the personality that will split people some will love him others will hate him (senna-esque aye??) but enjoy it while hes here because drivers like him dont walk onto the grid every year hes a senastional talent and performances like yesterday show why hel end up a multile world champion and id bet britains most succesful driver of all time

  83. Schumi_the_greatest
    29th March 2010, 16:30

    having just read back over that i may have come across rather critiful of button, im not knocking anything button has achieved im just saying that in my opinion hamilton is better

  84. At the end of th eday it was a bad call. End of Story.

  85. Re the tyre call – I’m not sure that Lewis does get to make tyre calls on his own, I’m sure it was mentioned before in an interview that the team make his tyre calls as they have more info than he does. Anyone else remember that?

    Otherwise great drive from Lewis, as Keith said unfortunate outcome – but I also think it’s a pity the damage to his reputation this weekend.

    I’m amazed at the Oz official who told the press that Hamilton was a d******* for doing a bit of a burnout. Rough weekend for Lewis, but them’s the breaks rough for Vettel as well.

  86. Another thought. The amount of times Barrichello suffered from biased strategies last year (and actually throughout his career) and there was nowhere near as much uproar. 3 stop strategies from pole whereas Button had two. Not that i’m saying Button wouldn’t have been as successful, but it’s a point.

  87. This was a terrible decision. It doesn’t add up to me, Hamilton was struggling to pass Kubica for the 2nd place. Kubica was defending really really well btw, it’s not easy to keep Hamilton behind. But he would have been third! The Ferrari’s were struggling with their tyres as well (Sidenote: funny how Alonso is noticing everything that’s going on around him, “why is everyone pitting?” whilst driving 250-300 km/h) and now they put Hamilton about 10-15 seconds behind Alonso, one of the toughest guys to pass! So now, instead of fighting for the second position which he did, he had to push as hard as he could in order to fight for the 4th position.

    About Webber: Yeah, he was very reckless in the race. The frontwing ok, but crashing his car into Hamilton was not a very clever move at all. He was on terrible form unlike Hamilton himself, who was the third driver to me this race (1. Alonso, great passing, drive of a true champion and the most all-round driver on track, 2. Kubica, close second, how the **** did he get that Renault to the second place? Absolutely phenomenal 3. Hamilton, who did a superb job all race but was a victim of this decision).

  88. Wasn’t Hamilton’s first radio-indiscretion announcing to the world that his tires were shot? That is, the tires that went on in the Great Strategy-Blunder pitstop?

  89. Hamilton needs to gain some maturity. When he’s made mistakes in the past, McLaren have supported him. They may have criticised him behind the scenes, but not publicly, and Hamilton should have done the same.

    And I don’t think the strategy was as clear cut as Hamilton makes out. Button had been able to save his tyres, while Hamilton was racing up the field, and we know he’s not as light on the tyres in the first place. Sure, his tyres would have stayed physically intact, but as his tyres got more worn and lost grip, could he have held off the Ferraris, Webber and Rosberg? We don’t know the answer, McLaren don’t know the answer, and Hamilton should stop pretending that he does.

  90. Since this is my first interaction with this fantastic site I think the first thing to say is HELLO! I’m a Mexican F1 fan.

    The second thing to say is this: I think LH is a super fast driver, one of the fastest in the current field, I think his speed comes from the fact that when others start to “think” about the consecuences of their racing acts he just does them and his talent resides on the fact that when he does them he has the gift to make a smaller amount of errors than the average driver would make. What I’m trying to say is that the guy is fast and he will get the results and maybe become an all time record breaker but I just can’t get the sense of affinity I get with the other drivers because of his personality. I’m not saying is a good or bad personality just one I can’t get to like 100%.

    I’ve read comments that say that the guy is only on his 4th seasson and he has so much to learn and this and that, but I think he’ll never change his feeling driven personality that has put him where he is. For example SV is on his 3rd season and in this race he had a bigger and more significant team related problem and one where he could single out the guy that didn’t fix the wheel well enough and made him and the team loose a GP win. His reaction was a mere “big brake problem, race over” or something like that, again he is not a better or less talented driver for this reaction he is just not LH, the LH that on the heat of the moment when he couldn’t easily pass a worn tired FA he informed he had destroyed his tires (one have to wonder how he says he could have finished without a second pit stop if he “destroyed” the second set of dry tires in what 20 laps?), a couple more corners ahead and still no pass so he just informs the world that the situation it’s not his fault at all, the fault is from some random guy of the team that just decided to pull him in on a heart driven call. Come on! No other current driver could’ve had this type of reaction, again, because they are not LH. Even his Team boss knows that he is a special guy to deal with, a very fast guy none the less. His talent is worth the effort to have him around and yes, watch him on the TV making great passes or just feeling kind of good when he gets some trouble. (I know it’s a bad feeling but I have to confess myself).

    Is this mix of personalities and talents that makes for the fans the passionate sport that F1 is.

    I hope my not so good english skills let me express my thoughts well enough.

    Cheers from Mexico!

  91. It was only a terrible decision because Hamilton could not make it work. Had Hamilton made it work we would be lauding the sheer awesomeness of the decision and Hamilton’s best drive of his life!

    How many times has Ross Brawn praised both Schumacher and Button for making a strategy work, when all seemed lost.

  92. From outside the UK – it’s really quite fascinating to see the intesnsity of reaction that anything remotely controversial involving Hamilton draws out of people – the only ting I can compare it to is the emotions on display in anything having to do with the Canadians hockey team in Montreal. Unfortunately, though, it’s a bit like watching a train wreck in slow motion.

  93. Lewis derved better after a sensational drive and good on him to make it known…

  94. Whatever he says that move round the outside of Roseberg at turn 11 was BRAVE. The best of the day. It was sad end to his journey but he alongside Webber showed some great aggression & I hope this is not the last of them.

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