Team-Mate Wars: Korean GP

Tuesday 08-October-2013 22:46

Because in F1 the first person you have to beat is your team-mate...

Red Bull Racing
Race: Vettel
Season: Sebastian Vettel 13 - Mark Webber 1
Mark Webber is no casual acquaintance of misfortune. Even when he was taking part in his own charity endurance event in Tasmania he got knocked over by a car. He's gone aerial in both sports cars and F1 cars, he's had recurring KERS problems on his side of the Red Bull garage and in the last two races he's had fires engulf his car. When it comes to insuring his house, the premium must go through the roof. As will a light aircraft very shortly, knowing his luck.

In Korea he stood a real chance of competing with Vettel before the grid penalty cast him back with the kind of people who might try and drive their McLaren on the Kevlar belt part of the Pirelli tyre. Then he got a less-than-substantial punt from Adrian Sutil but in exactly the wrong place and it ruptured an oil radiator. So maybe he's entitled to whinge afterwards that he was "Driving at 7/10ths for most of the second stint, we were just waiting, waiting, waiting." When if he stops and thinks about it, that's what he's going to be doing a lot more of when he goes to sportscars - saving tyres, saving fuel, and...erm...bringing the car home. It's not called the Endurance series for nothing.

Race: Button
Season: Jenson Button 11 - Sergio Perez 3
Button got his wing stomped on as a consequence of the Massa squeeze and spin. The domino effect pushed Alonso onto Gutierrez onto Button. So to finish as high as he did while nursing 33-lap-old tyres to the flag was a pretty good result. Checo added some more cameo nudges to his collection - irritating more of his fellow professionals including Massa and DiResta but providing great entertainment. When you watch Grosjean or Rosberg following another car, there's a high probability that they'll sit behind for the rest of the race. When Chco is following another car you know he is going to make a move sooner than later.

Race: Hamilton
Season: Lewis Hamilton 9 - Nico Rosberg 5
Hamilton threw away what was a great getaway off the line by giving up a place to Grosjean on the opening lap. From that position he failed to look after his tyres which went off considerably quicker than Nico Rosberg's set (Rosberg stopped a lap later) allowing Raikkonen through and ultimately losing P4 thanks to the Safety Car. When Lewis says that he and Fernando are a different calibre and shouldn't be racing for 5th and 6th, he should study how he got there.

Rosberg was all set to take a place off his team-mate when the nose mountings broke and then didn't have the sense to get out of Hamilton's way. Had the front wing folded under the front wheels (like Alonso's in Malaysia) then he would have been off and it could have impacted on his team-mate behind.

Race: Alonso
Season: Fernando Alonso 12 - Felipe Massa 2
For the first time this season Alonso looked tentative, something you could never accuse him of in past races. He was still in the division above Massa, who, like Paul di Resta, gave a very public demonstration of his fallibility at a time when he needs to impress.

Race: Raikkonen
Season: Kimi Raikkonen 10 - Romain Grosjean 4
More sublime overtaking moves from Raikkonen, one of which he executed on his team-mate into Turn 1. And it was clever, too. "I heard there would be yellow flags on the straight" said Kimi, "so I knew he would not get me back with DRS." If anyone thought that Kimi had switched to 'cruise' mode in his final races for Lotus they were wrong. He really must be on a very good points bonus.

Force India
Race: Di Resta
Season: Paul Di Resta 7 - Adrian Sutil 7
This is unusual, we know, considering Paul crashed out of the race and Adrian didn't, but it was a case of one mistake versus three. Sutil made a mistake at the start, he made a mistake spinning into Mark Webber and added to that he got a fine for speeding in the pitlane.

Race: Hulkenberg
Season: Nico Hulkenberg 13 - Esteban Gutierrez 1
Gutierrez continued his upturn in form and may yet be racing alongside the Russian foetus in 2014. And he doesn't weigh a lumping great 75kg. Getting to Q3 in the last two races would have attracted very high odds at the bookmakers, now if he can do it in Japan, that's quite a spread of race tracks. You can't help thinking that Degner 1 and 2 are waiting for him, though. Hulkenberg was in superb form, holding off three Wold Champions to the line.

Race: Bottas
Season: Maldonado 10 - Bottas 4
Maldonado produced the start of the season to climb from P18 to P9 on the opening lap. This was the Venezuelan's tribute to Mao's Great Leap Forward of 1958. Since the race ended he's been talking about not racing in 2014 because he doesn't want to be at the back, but next year Williams might have an advantage. They are a specialist in energy recovery systems and with that source increasing fourfold from the amount of KERS energy available this season, it might be very interesting. Pastor lost out in the South American hurly burly when he got mugged by Massa, Gutierrez, Perez and Bottas all on one lap.

Toro Rosso
Race: Ricciardo
Season: Daniel Ricciardo 8 - Jean-Eric Vergne 6
Ricciardo continues to do what he has to, outqualifying and outracing Vergne until the Toro Rosso brake problem kicked in.

Race: Bianchi
Season: Jules Bianchi 14 - Max Chilton 0
If his dad wasn't so rich you'd probably feel sorry for Max Chilton. Up until the last lap of Q1 he was leading Bianchi and then, yes, you've guessed it, he wasn't.

Race: Pic
Season: Giedo van der Garde 5 - Charles Pic 9
Van der Garde was up to P15 on the opening lap but by the end Pic had got back in front of his team-mate by the smallest of margins.

The Kimi is Disappointed File: "Second place is okay."

Star of the Race
Vettel 3, Alonso 2, Hamilton 2, Hulkenberg 2, Sutil 1, Brawn 1, Perez 1, Rosberg 1, Grosjean 1,

Overtaking Move of the Race
Raikkonen 5, Vettel 2, Grosjean 2, Alonso 1, Button 1, Bottas 1, Webber, Hamilton 1

Dull vs Exciting GPs
Exciting 11 - Dull 3

Sat on the Naughty Step
Van der Garde 2, Sutil 2, Maldonado 1, Vettel 1, Red Bull 1, Gutierrez 1, Hulkenberg 1, Grosjean 1, Hembery 1, Stewards 1, Webber 1, Massa 1

Media Watch

"You can't have a bonfire at the side of the race track." Jonathan Leggard, R5

"If you think there are wasps in the room with us, it's not." Jonathan Leggard, R5

"I don't want to be mean, but it's getting a bit tiresome." Jonathan Leggard, R5, on Vettel winning all the time.

Andrew Davies

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