Ferrari before the Fall – Spanish GP 2018
We had another unfortunately uneventful Grand Prix in Spain, despite a safety car and a relatively high amount of retirements.
- Lewis Hamilton – Mercedes must be pleased as punch with Hamilton driving an unchallenged race victory.
- Valtteri Bottas – Ditto for Bottas.
- Max Verstappen – The Dutchman can breathe easily for a while now. After an abysmal start to the season full of crashes, Red Bull must be happy to already achieve their second podium for the season.
- Sebastian Vettel – Vettel’s chances for challenging the Mercedes cars was ruined by a slow pit-stop in the latter half.
- Daniel Ricciardo – A so-and-so effort from Ricciardo but at least Red Bull are finally driving seriously.
- Kevin Magnussen – Though the Danish driver has received a lot of flak for his dangerous driving, Magnussen has scored all of Haas’s points this season. He’s certainly no slouch.
- Carlos Sainz – Renault seemed to have some issues in this race. Still, an okay result.
- Fernando Alonso – Whereas it has been looking like Alonso’s all washed up, what’s notable is that he’s scored in every single race this season while his team-mate has not.
- Sergio Perez – Despite the surprise podium in the previous event, it seems it was back to reality for Force India in this race. Still, achieving his second points-scoring finish for this season was regardless a positive turn out.
- Charles Leclerc – The Sauber rookie seems to really be giving his team-mate a run for his money. First a 6th place in Azerbaijan and now already another points-scoring finish. Sure, Leclerc still has ways to go but Sauber is beating the stuffing out of Williams and closing in on Toro Rosso. This result is still way better than what the team was fearing at the start of the season.
Golden Pineapple Award: Lance Stroll, Williams
Just when it looked like Williams were getting over the hump, Spain turned into another zero-points race for them. Stroll also becomes the fifth driver to be inducted into the Pineapple Hall of Fame for this season. I really hope Williams can shape up in the next couple of races.
Drop-out count: 6
On the very first lap, Romain Grosjean spun out and upon returning to the track took out Pierre Gasly and Nico Hülkenberg. This resulted in a safety car.
Technical difficulties were to blame for the rest of the drop-outs which included Esteban Ocon (whose car also lead to a brief Virtual Safety Car session), Stoffel Vandoorne and Kimi Räikkönen.
Back of the Lot News:
I actually don’t want to criticize the non-points scorers too harshly this round, because frankly they all did the best they could under the circumstances. Brendon Hartley had to start the race with a completely rebuilt car and was still able to beat Marcus Ericsson, who in turn battled Sainz admirably at one point in the race. Hartley and Ericsson were 12th and 13th respectively.
Dead Last: Sergey Sirotkin – Equally I don’t have the heart to really attack Sirotkin. It’s clear that Williams is still in trouble and Sirotkin suffered a spin late in the race which meant that he had no real chance of catching up to the pack. Better luck next time, Sergey!