Do we now have a pecking order?

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    I think it is fair to say, it is still somewhat unclear after 8 rounds which package is the fastest. I think a fair judgement would be that certain cars are suited to certain conditions and only flourish in these conditions. I think that Lotus clearly likes the hot humid conditions supported by its competitive showing at Bahrain and Valencia. As for RedBull, Mclaren, Ferrari, i think the RB8 and the Ferrari have become more of an all round package than the Mclaren.

    In silverstone and the coming races i expect Mclaren to be leading the way given the fast flowing nature and high speed corners at tracks like silverstone are to the liking of the MP4-27.



    It’s really, really tough to say, still. The Red Bull has had 4 of the last 5 poles (albeit the Monaco one was gifted) and on paper that would look quick. But Most of those have been all slow-corner dominated circuits, and the one time they didn’t feature even in the top 8 was in Barcelona, where there are quick corners.

    However with the latest F2012 update in Canada, and the latest RB8 update in Valencia, we truly know too little about those packages to truly make a definitive argument.

    If we see regular small updates only, and nothing massive like Ferrari and Red Bull have introduced recently, I believe we can conclusively draw something by Hungary. And no I’m not being sarcastic.


    Mallesh Magdum

    Nope, not yet…I think we need a few more races. Button still is underperforming and looks like MSC’s bad luck is coming to an end



    The thing is teams are making such huge leaps race by race. Ferrari in Spain made a huge leap, and another smaller leap in Canada. Red Bull made a good leap in Bahrain before making a massive leap in Valencia. That’s constantly shuffling the pecking order, so all we have are singular snapshots of a pecking order which changes by the next weekend anyways.



    As of now i’d say RB and Lotus are out in front, then Ferrari/Mclaren/Merc all very tightly together (still only a mite behind the top 2) then Williams (drivers massively underachieved), Sauber, FI, and then Toro Rosso getting worryingly close to Caterham, with HRT getting alongside Marussia.

    Over the season, Mlaren go up a couple, Ferrari down a couple, then from that order RB/Merc swap



    Heat: (30-41° C tarmac)
    1. Lotus
    2. Red Bull
    3. Ferrari
    4. Williams
    5. Mclaren
    6. Mercedes
    7. Sauber

    Cold: (20-30° C tarmac)
    1. Mercedes
    2. Mclaren
    3. Sauber
    4. Red Bull
    5. Ferrari
    6. Lotus
    7. Williams



    @kingshark I disagree – I’d put Red Bull ahead of Williams in the warm now, and Williams ahead of Ferrari.

    I’d also say it’s not really fair to judge any cold weather pace at the moment – the last GP that was even remotely cold was Monaco, and since then there have been changes to the pecking order, by virtue of the vicious development rate Ferrari and Red Bull have been bringing to the table.



    @kingshark I disagree – I’d put Red Bull ahead of Williams in the warm now, and Williams ahead of Ferrari.

    Uh, I did put Red Bull ahead of Williams?

    Anyway, you may be right on Williams being a third best team in the heat. However, it is their drivers who are not performing up to the cars ability. Maldonado is bloody quick but erratic, and Senna practically is useless (sorry, no offence Bruno). In that respect Ferrari is better as they, in my opinion, have employed the best driver in F1 at the moment.

    Mercedes have improved their hot weather performance quite a lot since the start of the season. Australia was hot, they were disappointing in the race. However, Merc had decent speed at Valencia despite the tarmac being a burning 41° C. I imagine that on cold (20-30° C) tarmac Mercedes are going to be the team to beat. The chilly British weather will suit them. They unquestionably had the best car in China, and in my eyes, also the best car in Monaco.



    @kingshark apologies! I meant Red Bull ahead of Lotus. Brainfade during typing… it happens. I agree that car + driver puts Alonso+Ferrari above Maldonado+Williams in hot weather, but Williams is above Ferrari IMO.



    I think there is a pecking order, but it changes more than it has in recent years, and people suddenly appear from nowhere to be very competitive. To that end, I think it works:

    There: Red Bull, Ferrari (Alonso), McLaren (Hamilton)
    Thereabouts: Lotus, Mercedes
    Upper midfield: Sauber, Williams (Maldonado), McLaren (Button)
    Lower midfield: Ferrari (Massa), Force India, Williams (Senna), Torro Rosso
    Nearly midfield: Caterham
    Backmarkers: Marussia, HRT



    I think a pecking order has emerged. Vettel’s consistency & some of Mark’s performances show that Red Bull is the most well rounded team on the grid in terms of race pace, quali pace and suitability to all kinds of tracks.

    The 2nd would be Mclaren, who are still strong on quali pace and on most Sundays. Hamilton would be leading the championship if it wasn’t for his team’s blunders. Jenson’s lack of versatility and talent is making the Mclaren look a little weak, which actually it isn’t

    The 3rd spot is taken up by Lotus, which has shown decent quali pace, and really strong race pace in warmer conditions and. Grosjean and Kimi haven’t capitalised on the potential of the car yet, but it is just a matter of time before they do.

    4th spot Ferrari – Not the strongest team in quali, but make up for it in race pace and suitability to different tracks. Even if the car had started the season as the 5th or 6th fastest car, it seems to be on it’s way up… at least in the hands of Fernando Alonso.

    5th Mercedes – Awesome in quali and the race when the conditions suit them. Unfortunately, it doesn’t come often enough for them

    6th Williams

    7th Sauber

    8th Force India

    9th Toro Rosso

    10 Caterham

    11th Marrussia

    12th HRT
    The 3rd spot would be

    All the car performances are so close, that it becomes impossible to fix a pecking order in stone. Come the British GP, we could easily see a Sauber going for the win. However, the pecking order of the drivers has been define . Alonso, Vettel & Hamilton have shown what they can really do with a car, while Jenson and Felipe have shown that no matter how strong a car is, they could still make it look like an underperformer.



    At the moment, it kind of looks like this to me:

    1. Red Bull
    2. Lotus
    3 (tied). McLaren
    3 (tied). Ferrari
    5. Mercedes
    6 (tied). Williams
    6 (tied). Sauber
    8. Force India
    9. Toro Rosso
    10. Caterham
    11. Marussia
    12. HRT

    Red Bull’s double floor and other upgrades have brought them back to the top, but Macca’s Silverstone upgrades should see them gain some places. Wouldn’t surprise me at all if this order was “shaken up” even more.



    I think:

    1. Red Bull
    2. Mclaren (Button underperforming)
    3. Mercedes (both drivers underperforming slightly)
    4. Lotus
    5. Force India (both drivers underperforming)
    6. Sauber
    7. Williams (Senna underperforming)
    8. Ferrari (Alonso overperforming)
    9. Toro Rosso (both drivers underperforming)
    10. Caterham
    11. HRT
    12 Marussia

    Although the differences in speed between the top 8 teams are so small it’s difficult to tell really.



    One of the things that is making this year so exciting is that there is no clear pecking order.

    It seems Red Bull may have found a step of extra pace than the rest, but come race day any one of ~10 different drivers can be in contention for the race win.

    The Williams does seem to be particularly ‘driver limited’ at the moment.
    Jenson’s inability to deal with a car that doesn’t meet his needs is rearing it’s ugly head at the moment
    Massa just hasn’t been the same since ’09
    Lotus appear to be *this* close to their first win of the year



    @todfod looks basically like the WCC standings there!

    The last 2 events have been warm events. Let’s wait until we get to the cold to judge where Lotus is there. If they can perform inthe cold, then I’ll say they’re in the mix.

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