Monday, May 29, 2006

Monaco 2006 GP Winners Losers

Winners

1. Alonso. Drove superbly and controlled the race from Kimi in the first half. The part where he slowed down and let Webber and JPM catch was masterful. I particularly liked the way he managed to get a 1 sec advantage just before the safety car period and then used that to get out in front of Kimi. Awesome! The best part was to do it in front of Renault Boss Carlos Ghosn who has often criticized F1 as too expensive. I'm sure Renault got their money's worth in this race.
2. DC. Most of the folks who scored or did well in the race were either previous winners, or had experience in Monaco. DC is a double winner and he used all his experience to take 3rd place. Superman returns!
3. JPM. Fairly quiet race but more importantly brought the car home. Now only 4 points behind Kimi/Fisi.
4. Webber and Kimi. Both did not finish the car but drove exceptionally well until their cars let them down. End of the day, they did not finish, that was the problem. Webber was way ahead of his team mate and either of the BMWs. In addition, he was not a moving chicane like the Hondas or the BMWs
5. Barrichello. Held of people back throughout the race and the 1 pitstop strategy worked beautifully. He would have finished on the podium except for speeding in the pitlane. He outqualified Button by a mile and converted that to a good finish. He slowly finding his feet at Honda and beginning to catch up with Button.
6. M Schumacher. Ironic. Had he started from the front even if it had been 2nd or 3rd place, he would have most likely won. I don't know whether to classify his drive as a brilliant recovery drive or a stupid one. I'm sure he used up quite a few of his guardian angel's brownie points on the way to 5th. Bit of luck that Kimi, Webber, Trulli, Klien - all of who were ahead by a mile DNF'ed, but that's just how racing is. On the whole it an interesting weekend for him and perhaps one that will come back to bite him if he loses the championship to Alonso by less than 10 points.

Losers

1. Button. Where was he throughout the race. Held back MS as much as he could - in 15th place. Considering that Barrichello was half a lap ahead of him most of the race, I was beginning to wonder if he was even awake. If I remember correctly, Button usually doesn't go very well at Monaco and proved it again this year.
2. BMW. Both Heidfeld and JV were being beaten not only by the Red Bulls but were racing for position with the Torro Rossos and Midlands. Weekend to forget but at heidfeld managed to get a point.
3. Massa. Threw it all away in qualifying unfortunately. Lost nearly 4 seconds in the pitstop due to "problems that afflict only Ferrari No 2. drivers". However, the way he lost out to MS in the 1st lap was pretty bad. Not sure if it was Jean Todt telling Massa to give way or whether it was Massa losing out by himself.

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