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Stewards led by Damon Hill penalise Michael Schumacher, Mercedes to appeal

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Michael Schumacher overtakes Alonso 2010 Monaco Grand Prix

Michael Schumacher might be the most successful driver on Monaco, but from this weekend he would be getting another tag of probably being the most unlucky/controversial driver at the Monaco circuit. Fresh on the heels of the controversy that the British media generated about the 2006 Monaco Grand Prix incident.

In the latest incident Michael Schumacher was punished with a 20 seconds penalty which threw him out of the points for illegally overtaking Fernando Alonso. The point of contention here is if he was allowed to overtake Alonso when the safety car went in. The article 40.13 states :

If the race ends whilst the safety car is deployed it will enter the pit lane at the end of the last lap and the cars will take the chequered flag as normal without overtaking.

But the article should not be valid here as the race monitors said Safety car in this lap.

The rules state if the race ends under the safety car period, the order will remain the same, however Michael Schumacher and Mercedes GP contend that since an all clear was given to race the overtaking move on Fernando Alonso was legal and legitimate.

FIA Stewards José Abed (FIA Vice President), Dr. Christian Calmes (a representative of the Automobile Club de Monaco), Paul Gutjahr  announced the verdict alongwith Damon Hill. The text was :

 

Fernando Alonso Monaco Race

The appeal went to the stewards where Michael Schumacher’s old foe Damon Hill was the driver’s representative. A large number of press sources are blaming Hill for the verdict. Also British press sources are very happy about the penalty, totally ignoring another incident that happened in the race, Rubens Barrichello after retiring threw his steering wheel onto the track, but no action was taken.

Michael Schumacher Monaco Race

Schumacher in his defence said :

“The message was ‘safety car in, track clear,’ if that’s given then its racing,” said Schumacher.

 

Damon Hill meanwhile defended himself and was quoted as saying :

“Believe me my only concern was that the right thing was done.

“But there was a wry smile from Michael. Slightly ironic you could say.” said Damon Hill

Ross Brawn also came in defence of his driver Schumacher and was able to demonstrate dissimilar endings at Melbourne. He also mentions the marshalls had waved green flags, a symbol for normal racing to resume.

“We believed that the track had gone green and the race was not finishing under a safety car when article 40.13 clearly would have applied,” said Brawn. “The reason for the safety car had been removed, the FIA had announced ‘Safety Car in this lap’ early on lap 78 and the track had been declared clear by race control.

This was further endorsed when the marshals showed green flags and lights after safety car line one. On previous occasions when it has been necessary to complete a race under a safety car, full course yellows are maintained, as in Melbourne 2009.

On the last lap, we therefore advised our drivers that they should race to the line and Michael made his move on Fernando for sixth place. We have appealed the decision of the stewards.”

In a video he explains that at 15:51 – Safety car coming in was flashed

15:52 – Track Clear was flashed

15:53 – Chequered flag

The appeal looks very promising as the race doesn’t appear to have finished under the safety car as track clear was flashed before chequered flag.

The result of the appeal will be announced by the FIA court of appeals and the result of Monaco Grand Prix is at the moment provisional.

Is it revival time ? Michael Schumacher 3rd fastest in practice behind the McLarens

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Update: Michael Schumacher was third fastest in the second practice session also behind the Red Bulls.

In what is good news for formula one and Michael Schumacher fans all around the world, the German seemed to be on pace in the practice session of this weekend’s Spanish Grand Prix. We have been following this story all week right from the press stories against Michael Schumacher to the Mercedes GP change of the chassis of Michael Schumacher’s car in order to make the car more suitable for him. But the joy could be shortlived as teams could be testing different experimental combinations before the actual race.

Lewis Hamilton was fastest during the session while Jenson Button was second fastest in the session. Mark Webber for the Red Bull team was fourth ahead of his teammate Sebastien Vettel. Nico Rosberg, Michael Schumacher’s teammate was sixth in the practice session.

Fernando Alonso was eighth in the session while teammate Felipe Massa was twelfth in the other Ferrari car.

Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton make it 1-2 for McLaren at the Chinese Grand Prix

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Jenson Button McLaren 2010

Jenson Button catapulted himself to first place in the formula one driver’s championship with an incredible drive and 1st place at the Chinese Grand Prix. Jenson Button now leads the championship table with 60 points. Teammate and fellow Briton Lewis Hamilton took second place at the Chinese Grand Prix to make it a McLaren 1-2.

Lewis Hamilton had his brush with the wrong side of the F1 law when he almost took out Sebastien Vettel in the pits. He later blamed the incident on painted advertisements on the tarmac which  reduce grip. It was another matter that to remain wheel to wheel with Vettel he actually was on the wrong side of the driveway. They briefly touched wheels and Hamilton again came into focus for dangerous driving that is becoming his trademark. Sebastien Vettel of the Red Bull team did not mince words while blaming Lewis Hamilton :

“At the stop I was ahead. I don’t know why he pulled to the left and was keen to touch me,” Sebastien Vettel said.

“His front wing was at my rear wheel. I hoped I didn’t get a puncture from that .I don’t really understand why he did that as I was a bit ahead of him and had the advantage. He didn’t have to make contact.” The German added

Jenson Button had a less eventful race by comparison, only looking uncomfortable once when he lost the grip at the hairpin of turn 6 as a result of aquaplaning. Jenson Button called the victory special after the race showing his mastery of the wet track and good judgement in choosing the right tyres.

“This is so special,”  Jenson Button said.

“For me it is my best victory. Every time that you win I think it becomes your best victory, but this one was very special as it was very tough conditions. I had a job keeping it on the road at the end and the great thing is our pace was good. It wasn’t just the luck of calling the weather.” he added

Nico Rosberg finished third for the Mercedes GP team while teammate Michael Schumacher again struggled and finished 10th. Adrian Sutil had a decent race in his Force India car finishing 11th.

The Ferrari team had a mixed race with Fernando Alonso finishing 4th and teammate Felipe Massa finishing a dismal but still points earning 9th.

Final classification of the 2010 Chinese Formula One Grand Prix :

  1. Jenson Button (Britain)       McLaren 1hr 46mins 42.163secs
  2. Lewis Hamilton (Britain)      McLaren           +00:01.530
  3. Nico Rosberg (Germany)        Mercedes           00:09.484
  4. Fernando Alonso (Spain)       Ferrari            00:11.869
  5. Robert Kubica (Poland)        Renault            00:22.213
  6. Sebastian Vettel (Germany)    Red Bull           00:33.310
  7. Vitaly Petrov (Russia)        Renault            00:47.600
  8. Mark Webber (Australia)       Red Bull           00:52.172
  9. Felipe Massa (Brazil)         Ferrari            00:57.796
 10. Michael Schumacher (Germany)  Mercedes           01:01.749
 11. Adrian Sutil (Germany)        Force India        01:02.874
 12. Rubens Barrichello (Brazil)   Williams           01:03.665
 13. Jaime Alguersuari (Spain)     Toro Rosso         01:11.416
 14. Heikki Kovalainen (Finland)   Lotus                  1 lap
 15. Nico Huelkenberg (Germany)    Williams               1 lap
 16. Bruno Senna (Brazil)          HRT                   2 laps
 17. Karun Chandhok (India)        HRT                   4 laps
 Ret.  Jarno Trulli (Italy)          Lotus                30 laps
 Ret.  Lucas Di Grassi (Brazil)      Virgin               48 laps
 Ret.  Pedro de la Rosa (Spain)      BMW Sauber           49 laps
 Ret.  Sebastien Buemi (Switzerland) Toro Rosso           56 laps
 Ret.  Kamui Kobayashi (Japan)       BMW Sauber           56 laps
 Ret.  Vitantonio Liuzzi (Italy)     Force India          56 laps
 Ret.  Timo Glock (Germany)          Virgin               56 laps
Image : McLaren Media

Jenson Button clocks fastest time at Chinese Grand Prix practice

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Defending formula one champion Jenson Button of the McLaren formula one team clocked the fastest time in the opening practice session for the formula one Chinese Grand Prix. His teammate (Brit again :P) Lewis Hamilton also clocked a super time to be P2 in the practice session.

Nico Rosberg of the Mercedes GP team was third in the practive session while teammate and veteran Michael Schumacher who is looking to redeem himself at the Chinese Grand Prix was fourth. Sebastien Vettel for the Red Bull team was the fifth fastest during the session.

The biggest news of the circuit during the session was Sebastien Buemi’s crash in which both of his wheels seemed to fly off as he braked. The suspension on his car seemed to have broken and in some of the photos one can see extensive damage to tyres done on his car. Buemi thankfully escaped unhurt and was seen gesticulating to his team engineers. Scuderia Torro Rosso later gave a clarifying statement about the crash that read :

“Sebastien Buemi’s incident in FP1 was caused by the failure of the front-right upright “

 

GP CINA F1_2010

Ferrari was ok in the practice but reliability woes hit them again. Fernando Alonso suffered an engine failure with smoke and fire coming out of the rear of his Ferrari 2010 challenger. At the hairpin of turn 6 Fernando Alonso’s car suffered this breakdown. Ferrari are going through their engines very fast with a limited number of engines allowed in the season and later on might have to deal with extra engine penalties.

Felipe Massa thankfully did not suffer an engine failure and was 10th fastest. Force India continued their good run with Adrian Sutil finishing the session 9th fastest ahead of Felipe Massa’s Ferrari. Force India also had some beautiful photos of the track (and their sponsors in the side profile Open-mouthed ) :

 

Force India F1 team Chinese Grand Prix

Force India F1 team Chinese Grand Prix 1

Sebastien Vettel wins the 2010 Malaysian Grand Prix , Red Bull 1-2 with Mercedes GP completing the podium

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Nico Rosberg 3rd malaysian grand prix 2010

Apologies for no photo of the winning driver, apparently Red Bull’s media department is not approving our application to use their photos for editorial purposes.

Red Bull really did give Sebastien Vettel and Mark Webber wings with the duo grabbing a 1-2 at the 2010 formula one Malaysian Grand Prix. Nico Rosberg was third for the Mercedes GP formula one team (erstwhile Brawn GP) while his teammate Michael Schumacher was unlucky yet again as a nut came off his car’s wheel and he was forced to retire. Before that Michael Schumacher in a strong start had made up 2 places.

Sebastien Vettel proved that if you are good enough and if you drive good enough, victory will come and luck factor will diminish. After 2 unlucky races, Malaysia proved to be third time lucky.

Lewis Hamilton was another the start performer of the day though, the Briton made his way up from 20th on the grid to sixth place. His teammate Jenson Button was 8th at the finish line.

Meanwhile Spaniard and Ferrari driver Fernando Alonso called the Malaysian Grand Prix the toughest race of his life. He suffered a gearbox problem and apparently no clutch in the race.

“Right from the start things went wrong. On the formation lap, my gearbox broke, and I had no clutch during the race,” Fernando Alonso said.

“So I had to brake in a weird way. I had to first gear down and then push the throttle hard so it would engage the gear for that corner.

“So it was probably the hardest race of my whole life in terms of driving, because I had to improvise for every corner.

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