Formula 1 from Shanghai China
The Formula One road show heads back to Asia this weekend for the Chinese Grand Prix. And as ever there is plenty of drama both on and off the track in Bernie Ecclestone’s mad world of Motor Sport.
Controversy follows F1 like a lonely puppy and this Grand Prix is no exception. As we stand F1 teams are expecting the upcoming Bahraini Grand Prix to be canceled due to civil unrest and concerns about safety in the country.
And as the Bahraini issue swirls around F1 there is another set-back to Lewis Hamilton’s season. The British driver has been issued a five-place grid penalty due to a change of gearbox in his McLaren. This doesn’t exactly come at an ideal time for Hamilton who was hoping to record a hat-trick of pole positions at the start of the 2012 season.
Two previous poles that did little, in the end, to secure a first place podium spot in the Australian and Malaysian Grands Prix. He finished third in both.
If more drama were required going into a tinderbox of a Grand Prix, it seems the rain in China falls mainly on the Shanghai International Circuit. That’s right; esteemed weather people like Michael Fish (is he still working?) expect rain this weekend for the race.
If there is one thing Motor Sport fans know it’s that souped up supercars + a slick, slippery surface = entertainment. And we’re expecting entertainment by the gallon in Shanghai.
It’s not just race fans rubbing their hands with anticipation going into the latest stop on the F1 tour; Fernando Alonso will also be chuffed to hear of the expected downpour.
His Ferrari is still as much as a second behind the pace of its rivals. A disadvantage wiped off the board by the equalising effects of a wet track. We have also seen in Malaysia how well Alonso deals with such conditions. He recored a much needed win there and will be more than confident he can replicate that success under the same conditions.
And with Hamilton at best starting from 6th position in the grid, that is another rival potentially out of the race in the early running; potentially.
Lewis Hamilton is a driver capable of just about anything. So this offers the tantalising possibility of an irritated Hamilton tearing up the track and overcoming the disadvantage placed upon him by outside forces.
Don’t forget about Red Bull. They have placed in pole the last four times the Chinese Grand Prix has been held. No doubt they will have something up their sleeve to bridge their early qualification difficulties.
As ever there are countless story lines going into a Grand Prix. One thing is guaranteed; this won’t be dull.
Remember you can watch the Chinese Grand Prix FREE on your computer or mobile with BBC Live Streaming. Need a UK IP address? Click Here
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