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F1 analysis: Indian Grand Prix

2011-10-31 09:24

India - Team by team analysis of the inaugural Indian Formula 1 Grand Prix (listed in championship order):

RED BULL (Sebastian Vettel 1, Mark Webber 4)

Vettel started on pole, led every lap, set the fastest lap on the last lap of the race and celebrated his 11th win of the season. The double champion also set a record for the number of laps led in a season. Webber started on the front row but was passed by Button at the start and lost out to Fernando Alonso at the pitstops in the middle of the race, a setback in the team's bid to get him into second place overall.

MCLAREN (Jenson Button 2, Lewis Hamilton 7)

Button took his sixth podium in seven races and consolidated his grip on second place overall. Hamilton again clashed with Ferrari's Felipe Massa. This time the stewards ruled he was the wronged party but the collision wrecked his race. He has already started with a three-place grid penalty for ignoring warning flags in practice.

FERRARI (Fernando Alonso 3, Felipe Massa retired)

Alonso (third overall) added some distance between him and Webber (fourth overall) with his ninth podium of the season while Massa became embroiled in controversy, collecting a drive-through for the collision with Hamilton. He retired after clouting the kerb and breaking the suspension for the second day in a row. Not his finest hour.

MERCEDES (Michael Schumacher 5, Nico Rosberg 6)

Schumacher made a strong start, going from 11th to eighth. Staying out five laps longer than Rosberg allowed the seven-times champion to take fifth place at his second stop. Both felt they had got the maximum out of the car.

RENAULT (Vitaly Petrov 11, Bruno Senna 12)

Both drivers at least improved on their grid positions. Senna made up four places at the start but then suffered a KERS problem. Petrov started on hard tyres but lost time in his first pitstop when he made a mistake with the clutch. The Russian started with a five-place penalty for causing a collision at the previous race in South Korea.

FORCE INDIA (Adrian Sutil 9, Paul Di Resta 13)

Sutil gave the team some points on their home debut. Force India also managed to move a point further away from Sauber, helped by Sebastien Buemi's retirement while ahead of Sutil. Di Resta started with an aggressive strategy hoping for a safety car interlude that never came.

SAUBER (Sergio Perez 10, Kamui Kobayashi retired)

Perez scored a point thanks to a bold tyre strategy (using the hard tyre for the first lap only) after starting 20th on the grid due to a three-place penalty. Kobayashi was involved in an accident at the start. The point allowed the team to stay ahead of Toro Rosso on race placings.

TORO ROSSO (Jaime Alguersuari 8, Sebastien Buemi retired)

The team showed good pace and would have scored more points had Buemi not suffered a technical failure and retired while in eighth place.

WILLIAMS (Rubens Barrichello 15, Pastor Maldonado retired)

Another dismal day for the former champions, who have not scored a point since Belgium in August and even then only one in their last 10 races. Barrichello ended where he started and was caught in a first corner incident that led his front wing to be jammed under the car. He rejoined at the back of the field. Maldonado, whose car was clipped by his team mate at the start, had a gearbox failure on lap 13.

TEAM LOTUS (Heikki Kovalainen 14, Jarno Trulli 19)

Trulli was hit by an HRT at the start and had to pit with a puncture. Kovalainen ran as high as 10th at one point as cars pitted ahead of him.

HRT (Narain Karthikeyan 17, Daniel Ricciardo 18)

Karthikeyan, replacing Italian Vitantonio Liuzzi for his home race, started last but ended ahead of team mate Ricciardo, who had a problem with the rear right wheel.

VIRGIN RACING (Jerome D'Ambrosio 16, Timo Glock retired)

Glock collided with Kobayashi at the start, pitted for a new front wing, returned to the race but then retired one lap later.

Reuters