Chinese GP: a report card with a hint of wittiness by Froldi

Overtakes. Score: 10. I’m all for quality overtakes over quantity overtakes, and Jacques Villeneuve is a great example. Those single-seaters really show who’s talented and who’s not. Who has the guts and who hasn’t. Who knows how to be bold and overtake and who doesn’t. If only they got rid of the horrible circuits (the worst Tilkedromes) and started to add more gravel escape routes…

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Ferrari SF70H. Score: 10. The little one, Gina, is growing well. It is astonishing to see Maranello’s men bringing some innovations to the second Grand Prix… and they work! Good job! Who knows how it would have been a dry Grand Prix…

Team Ferrari. Score: 8. The strategy they tried on Vettel was a well-calculated hazard, in those circumstances it was quite predictable that an S-Car would have shown up. The problem was the passage in the pit lane (it was unpredictable) and Raikkonen that blocked the way. If this happened in any other part of the circuit, they wouldn’t have passed in the pit lane, and Vettel would almost certainly have snatched victory (or, at least, we would have seen a close duel with Hamilton). But I understand Ferrari’s team, if they had given instructions from the team they would have been criticized, however, they didn’t give it, and they have been criticized anyway. It’s easy to judge while we watch the Grand Prix sitting comfortably in our homes.
Hamilton. Score: 9. Lonely race for him. As soon as Vettel marks a fast lap, he does the same. One all, it’s a draw with the Ferrari’s man. I feel like it’s more his victory rather than Mercedes’ victory.
Hamilton vs Rosberg. Score: 2. Just stop this! Hamilton keeps teasing his nerdy former teammate. I can understand that he’s bothered because he doesn’t have a payback on the race track. Everybody should know how to be a gracious loser (and appreciate and make someone appreciate your victories). Hamilton makes a bad impression, rather than Rosberg (who on social networks is acting as if nothing happened). Maybe the Valkyrie that escorts him to every interview in a diligent and motherly way should explain it to him.

Hamilton in love with Vettel. Score: 2. This new budding romance, with sweet and passionate declarations, doesn’t convince me at all. I believe that Hamilton whispers love words just to keep diminishing Rosberg (see above). If Vettel starts to rise in the ranking, I bet they will start to fall apart… or maybe I’m just cynical and I know nothing about heart’s reasons

Vettel. Score: 10. I give him a point more compared to Hamilton because he did a masterpiece overtaking Ricciardo. This performance kind of reminds me of Villeneuve vs Arnaux (Dijon) and Mansell vs Senna (Spain). Awesome.
Mad Max. Score: 8. As I said before: I notice that he’s matured. He’s always really fast and tough, but he doesn’t go over the limit. He embarrasses his teammate with a great overtake, tries to catch Hamilton, and he fails under Vettel’s pressure (he’s human after all). If he keeps going like that I’ll have to remove the nickname “mad”. It wouldn’t be pleasant (just joking).
Ricciardo. Score: 6. His intention was to give tit for tat to his teammate, during the last laps, but he didn’t make it. Overall he looks like a sort of slow cab driver.
Bottas. Score: 5. He qualifies pretty well (and he must be under a lot of pressure to confront himself with a legend like Hamilton). The S-Car’s mistake was a newbie mistake. But it is not an isolated case and it is not the most famous. I can recall Imola’s Grand Prix, in 1991, when Prost started to “surf” during the reconnaissance lap, before the race. He was driving a Ferrari.
Raikkonen. Score: 5. Is Iceman becoming a shrinking violet? Second race without praise or blame. During the race he pointed out some issues with power gaps and according to Antonini (in live coverage) it was fixed via software. To me he’s ready to retire, and I’m very sorry to say that. He acted like he was an exquisite Moet & Chandon cork and he made his teammate lose precious seconds.
Giovinazzi. Score: postponed. He’s an unquestionable talent. But in two days he did two almost identical crashes (and he was the only one to do that), it reminded me of Massa during his last year in Ferrari (in Montecarlo, I believe). Sauber’s team, which is currently in troubled waters, doesn’t even know anymore how to put together the pieces to create a good single-seater to bring to the next GP. And, crashing on the main straight, he indirectly damaged Ferrari’s aggressive strategy with Vettel. Let’s hope the young Italian pilot does better in the next Grand Prix.
Race direction. Score: 7. The turnaround that started with this championship keeps going on. The race marshals are featureless (and it should be like that, except for extreme cases) and the pilots aren’t blocked by ridiculous rules.
Pirelli tires. Score: 8. In the Grand Prix the tires are great. That’s a pity. Last year I got used to criticize them! I’m joking, of course.
Marchionne. Score: Bad luck. He was in the box shortly before the Grand Prix and he said that a mistake is ok. You know the rest of the story. Mr. president, a free advice: watch the Grand Prix at home!
P.S.: Let’s draw a veil over the former record pair McLaren-Honda… but you know, subject to certain exceptions, getting back together is the same soup, just reheated…

Mariano Froldi
Translated by Isabella Lai


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