So Rubens Barrichello can’t understand why he didn’t win the Spanish Grand Prix, leading to speculation about “team orders” in the Brawn GP outfit? Well, the Brazilian needs only to look at his pace after the first round of pitstops: whether it was his driving or an issue with the car, fact is, he simply wasn’t fast enough.Jenson Button’s switch to a two-stop strategy was simply Ross Brawn thinking on his feet. Lighter-fuelled Button’s strategy had been compromised by his fast-starting team mate and the safety car period, so the change was necessary to bring Button back into play. Of course, this required the Briton to deliver the necessary pace on heavier tanks, and – in the final stint – a longer run on the hard tyre. And how Jenson delivered!
Barrichello, on the other hand, just could not maintain the pace he had shown in the early laps, and came under pressure from Mark Webber, another driver whose team had read the race situation perfectly, keeping him out on softs until late, a move that vaulted him ahead of Felipe Massa and Red Bull team-mate Sebastian Vettel.
I must say this was the best Spanish Grand Prix in years, with clever strategies compensating for the circuit’s notorious lack of overtaking possibilities. Pity, though, that the commentary team are so clueless: despite listening to the same radio conversations I heard, our local anchors thought Barrichello’s strategy had been switched, not Button’s. And, in the post-race interviews, even Bob Constanduros was confused, needing to be set right by Jenson Button.
And then there was that do-or-die overtaking attempt by Fernando Alonso on Mark Webber, when Martin Brundle, nogal, suggested Alonso had used his KERS. As far as I know, Renault announced it was shelving the system for the next seven races…
Seems that, if you pay attention, you can have a better view from your armchair than they have in their well-equipped studios or trackside commentary boxes!