Sunday, May 28, 2006

What The Hell Was That??????

I would like to announce a reward of Rs 50 (not much, but what can you expect from a kid?) that will go to the first person who can explain to me, properly, WHAT JUST HAPPENED AT MONACO! The entire race was filled with incident and controversy. First Schumi's pole position being stripped, quite deservedly, if I may say so, and going to Fernando Alonso. It isn't the first time in his life Michael has tried pulling a fast one (can you say Damon Hill?).
Schumi made up for it almost as soon as the race started, moving up from 22nd position (and starting from the pit lane) to climb to 16th within a few laps. A one stop strategy further helped his rise up the standings.
Of course, that wasn't the only eventful part of the first few laps. Kimi almost overtook Webber right at the start, and then did so a lap later, in a daring move that could have found him slammed into a wall if he didn't do it fast enough. Kimi kept closing in on Alonso as the race progressed.
Alonso, tried to slow things down, hence causing Webber and Montoya to catch Kimi and cause problems. Then Alonso had a few problems of his own as the front four got caught in heavy traffic, which finally resulted in Alonso and Kimi lapping the 8th placed driver (and we thought it would be difficult to overtake at Monte Carlo!). In his effort to get past Fisichella, Webber's car stalled and started smoking. The safety car was called onto track.
This should have been Kimi's chance to catch Alonso. Instead, the Mclaren once again got into its vintage pattern of all speed, no reliability, stopping completely because it slowed down (if only my dad's car could do that. It would make him speed up when the bicycles look ready to overtake!). Anyway, as a McLaren fan, I can at least be thankful that this car had a little bit of the pace that last year's car did.

Anyway, by this time, Schumacher had made use of the two trips for the safety car (this would go up to 3 when 3rd placed Trulli pulled up some laps later) by closing in, and then overtaking when it became legal. Usual Schumi style, he took every half chance available to do so, not really mindful how risky the manouevre. Don't forget, this is the same guy who barged his own teammate Barrichello to overtake him on the last lap last year. Again, they found themselves in a race for fourth position, but on different teams this time.
In the end, Barrichello managed to hold on to fourth, with the top three comprising Alonso, Montoya and Coulthard, respectively.
Did you get all that? Nahh!!! Don't worry about it if you didn't. I am still trying to comprehend what happened myself. Only way to get a decent idea of the story of the race, if you didn't watch it, is to do so when the repeat telecast comes. In the meantime, the final result could help you get a fair idea of the way the championship standings are going.

1. Fernando Alonso Spain Renault 78 1h43m43.116
2. Juan Pablo Montoya Colombia McLaren-Mercedes 78 14.5
3. David Coulthard Britain Red Bull-Ferrari 78 52.2
4. Rubens Barrichello Brazil Honda 78 53.3
5. Michael Schumacher Germany Ferrari 78 53.8
6. Giancarlo Fisichella Italy Renault 78 1m02.0
7. Nick Heidfeld Germany Sauber-BMW 77 1 Lap
8. Ralf Schumacher Germany Toyota 77 1 Lap
9. Felipe Massa Brazil Ferrari 77 1 Lap
10. Vitantonio Liuzzi Italy Toro Rosso-Cosworth 77 1 Lap
11. Jenson Button Britain Honda 77 1 Lap
12. Christijan Albers Netherlands MF1-Toyota 77 1 Lap
13. Scott Speed United States Toro Rosso-Cosworth 77 1 Lap
14. Jacques Villeneuve Canada Sauber-BMW 77 1 Lap
15. Tiago Monteiro Portugal MF1-Toyota 76 2 Laps
16. Franck Montagny France Super Aguri-Honda 76 2 Laps
17. Jarno Trulli Italy Toyota 78 6 Laps
R Christian Klien Austria Red Bull-Ferrari 56
R Nico Rosberg Germany Williams-Cosworth 51 Accident
R Kimi Raikkonen Finland McLaren-Mercedes 50
R Mark Webber Australia Williams-Cosworth 48
R Takuma Sato Japan Super Aguri-Honda 46

That's it for now. Alonso's success continues, and so does Spain's sprting renaissance. Can this period of good fortune for the nation carry on into the World Cup and the rest of the Formula One season? Let's wait and watch.


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