Watched the Chinese GP back for a 3rd time (I’m a student who’s meant to be revising), and got thinking about Buttons first pitstop… Does anyone else think he pitted a lap later than he was supposed to, to disadvantage Hamilton?
My theory: Whichever team mate qualy’s fastest gets first call on pitstops so, by Jenson pitting late, Hamilton had to pit late also. Hamilton’s tyres were clearly going off quicker than Buttons and Vettels and, in the subsequent lap, he lost out to Massa too. Had they pitted when they were supposed to, I’m pretty sure Hamilton wouldn’t have come out behind Massa and possibly could have been challeneging for the lead, depending on how quick his in lap was.
Thoughts? Apologies if this has been brought up already…
When I watched the race I also thought they made a mistake by not bringing Hamilton in first, but I thought possibly that Hamilton’s fresh set of softs would’ve countered this. In the end, it did. Even if Button hadn’t pulled into the wrong pits which cost him about 4 seconds, Hamilton still would’ve got him.
I don’t know if it was deliberate but McLaren nearly made an awful mistake by not bringing in Hamilton the lap before. With clean stops, they would have had Button-Hamilton-Vettel afterwards. Instead Vettel jumped both of them, DRS on Hamilton on fading tyres, pit-stop jump on Button. Had they been on the same strategy it would have been game over.
If Button did it on purpose, I don’t know. Last year in Malaysia he pitted early to try and undercut Hamilton, forcing him to pit early and ultimately costing him 5th by compromising his strategy. So the theory has some validity.
The same mistake was made by Ferrari. Alonso was 5 seconds slower ftom 4 laps, Massa was almost on decent lap times, and they waited a lot before bringing them in. I would have brought Alonso in at least 5 laps earlier, before Massa, maybe sacrificing the two-stop strategy but surely not sacrificing the result.
yeah, ted kravitz said McLaren are ready for their stop (Button), it went on to Hamiltons camera and they both past turn 16 at this time, going past the pits. Then our tv screens went into the pits and saw Red Bull machanics go back inside but McLaren mechanics still out with their tyres, at this time i thought “those tyres are gonna get cold, because they would be standing there for 1 minute 40 seconds.”
It was later suggested that Martin Whitmarsh said Button was planned to come in a lap earlier. I thought it was a war/battle with the machanics to see who will counter-act.
As whitmarsh said that though surley the obvious solution would have been call Hamilton in, wouldn’t have been too hard to get the different tires.
Ah well, Hamilton probably benefitted later in the day, the pirelli’s degredation being so extreme two laps really does make all the differance. Button probably lost himself a podium, an possibly gained one for Vettel, wonder how significant that’ll be come the end.