Saturday, 8 September 2007

Fautless Alonso Grabs Pole

Alonso well and truly silenced the Hamfosi today. Whatever Mclaren’s problems off the track, on it at least, the team performed faultlessly; the silver cars looked absolutely beautiful.

Alonso was on blinding form and if his fist punching was anything to go by after grabbing pole, he knew it too. I don’t for a minute pretend to understand the underlying dynamics of an F1 car but you could visually see Alonso’s advantage today especially in the last sector. He seemed to carry so much speed into the Parabolica yet seamlessly get back on the power earlier than any other driver out there.

No doubt about it, Hamilton is going to have his work cut out to hang on to his team-mate tomorrow. We may even see an error from the Britain if he is forced to try and match a race pace beyond his grasp.

Ferrari were the big losers in today’s session and suffered an embarrassing result on home turf. There was a lot of talk about Raikkonen being disadvantaged by running in the T-Car following his crash in practice. I’m not so sure about this. A driver of Raikkonen’s calibre could still have delivered the goods in these circumstances. The Ferraris are just drastically of the pace plain and simple. I think Raikkonen is probably carrying a good deal more fuel than his team-mate which would partly explain why he struggled and why the on-form Heidfeld was able to get the jump on him.

So it wouldn’t surprise me if Raikkonen is one-stopping. But I think the Mclarens will be out of reach for the Finn even if they do have to two-stop as their lap times suggest.

Other names worth a mention include those drivers brining up the back end of the top ten: Kovalainen (7th), Rosberg (8th), Trulli (9th) and Button (10th). Kovalainen has come of age in the last few races and seems to have got the measure of his vastly more experienced team-mate. Melbourne seems so long ago when he burst on to the scene with a string of unforced errors. I had my doubts about him then but must admit I am starting to rat

Rosberg delivered the goods yet again. I wonder if he will be in a Williams next year. The problem is there is no real space in any of the top teams.

How Jarno Trulli managed to make the top ten is beyond me considering that he was right on the cusp in P16 at the end of the first knock-out session. It obviously gave him a bit of a wake-up call.

And finally, credit must go to Button for getting the evil handling Honda into the final session.

2 comments:

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