Delicious Chinese take-away for McLaren

By Lee Catuzzi

Credibility is something that must be established with more than one performance and some luck. Well that’s exactly what Jenson Button proved this morning in Shanghai at the Chinese grand Prix. Another perfect tyre choice which saved him two extra pit stop, coupled with his skilled smooth driving earned the Brit a top spot on the standing tables and I think that he will deliver more in the GPs to come. McLaren’s team principal, Whitmarsh was obviously delighted with the driver’s line up and the overall team, that so far has proved to everyone why they deserve to be on top.

I was one of the many cynics that at the beginning of the season didn’t give Jenson a chance to do well at team Hamilton (McLaren) but he has proved us all wrong and if you ever going to read this post Jenson, please accept my apologies. Hamilton on the other hand proved what a good driver he really is by finishing just over one second behind Button, having stopped four times compared with the two of Button.

The Red Bulls of Vettel and Webber were hardly a danger to anyone in Shanghai. They dropped their top spot qualifying position to 6th (Vettel) and 8th (Webber). It seems that their car when in perfect condition can beat anyone on the grid but they probably ought to learn to do that more often otherwise Sebastian Vettel will soon find somebody eager to give him the good car he needs to be word champion.

And Ferrari? My team! A mixture of emotions and realities must come to light here.
Drivers first. Massa should definitely go after this season because together with Fisichella they are a major embarrassment at Maranello. At the Chinese GP, Massa was the only one who had big problems passing the embarrassing Schumacher’s Mercedes car. Did that present a mental block for him?  On the other hand Fernando Alonso after his clear jump-start and five stops (4 for tyres and 1 for penalty) managed a very good 4th position by driving an excellent race. If the rumours are true then next year, Ferrari will have a competitive line up with Alonso and Kubica.
The Polish driver is as good as the top three drivers but never had a chance to show his true potential because never had a car that could deliver that for him. Renault maybe have that for him this season and if it works out for the better may stay there. His rookie Russian team mate Petrov has shined enough by proving that the car is definitely something to take serious.
In my opinion the Ferrari team’s management is at fault more than anyone else for different reasons. It is not the same team or better from the one when they employed Ross Brawn and Jean Todt. Those two made the place work like clockwork and not just Schumacher but any other driver at the time could have scored well at Ferrari. Stefano Domenicali still has to prove that he is good for the job, just like Button is proving a point as a driver. He has to deliver more that one.

Biggest disappointment of all (actually more an embarrassment if you ask me) is the not so great anymore, Michael Schumacher. What the heck is wrong with this guy? I really thought he was clever, cunning and intelligent but I take it all back. He is sacrificing a name he has created (with help from Brawn and Todt) for the kick or more like with a attitude of a big-header who thinks he is invincible. No wonder there is a queue of drivers who don’t want anything more than beat him fare and square. That obviously include his team mate Nico Rosberg who has not only out-qualified him, but also finished in a better position in the race, been on the podium twice out of four GPs and sit comfortably second in the Drivers standings.

To finish I would like to say: “Well done Jenson!”


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