2014 Formula 1 Report: USA Edition
Drafting the Circuits
Grand Prix Date Tire Compounds
Grand Prix of Austria June 20-22 Supersoft/Soft
British Grand Prix July 4-6 Medium.Hard
Hockenheim Grand Prix July 18-20 Supersoft/Soft
1. Nico Rosberg 140
2. Lewis Hamilton 118
3. Daniel Ricciardo 79
4. Fernando Alonso 69
5. Sebastian Vettel 60
6. Nico Hulkenberg 57
7. Jenson Button 43
8. Valtteri Bottas 40
9. Kevin Magnussen 23
10. Sergio Perez 20
11. Felipe Massa 18
12. Kimi Raikkonen 18
13. Romain Grosjean 8
14. Jean-Eric Vergne 8
15. Daniil Kvyat 4
16. Jules Bianchi 2
1. Mercedes 258
2. Red Bull 139
3. Ferrari 87
4. Force India 77
5. McLaren 66
6. Williams 58
7. Toro Rosso 12
8. Lotus 8
Canadian Grand Prix
Oh Canada! After receiving a 10 year extension on their F1 commercial rights, the action on the track justified the agreement. By far, this was the best race of the 2014 campaign!
Although Mercedes locked out the front row of the grid again, this race was anything but a Mercedes romp. Instead, Daniel Ricciardo received his first Grand Prix victory and Infiniti Red Bull Racing occupied two steps on the podium. Like Stefan from SNL says, “this race had everything”!
The opening lap was the warning shot. Before lap one was even completed, the safety car was required after the two Marussia’s took each other out in turn 3. Max Chilton skipped over the inside curb and swept into teammate Jules Bianchi’s machine. Carbon fiber went flying and both cars were down for the day. The stewards deemed Chilton as the responsible party and he will receive a 3-place grid penalty for the next race in Austria.
Once the race resumed, it was business as usual as Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton checked out and made it the typical two-man Mercedes show. By mid race, Hamilton was reeling Rosberg in and it was expected that the two Merc drivers would have a whale of a battle as the race developed.
This never happened.
Instead of stretching their leads, the Mercedes were seen actually losing pace and the field started to slowly reel them in.
The Mercedes loss of pace was due to MGU-K failures. Paddy Lowe described the failures like this…
“We experienced near-simultaneous failure of the MGU-K on both cars just after half distance, which was apparently caused by an issue in the high-voltage Control Electronics which manage the MGU-K. This meant both cars lost hybrid power from this point onwards and, without the additional braking force of the MGU-K, this also put a much higher load on the rear brakes. Lewis then suffered a complete rear brake failure after his second pit stop, which was a consequence of the MGU-K fault. Nico was not affected in the same way and managed incredibly to maintain position from lap 37 to lap 67, making up time in the first and second sectors in order to defend in sector three, when he was considerably down on power.”
At this point, Sergio Perez in the Force India machine was slowly climbing closer to the leading Mercs.
This set up a finale that was gripping. Sergio Perez, Daniel Ricciardo and Sebastian Vettel ran head to tail with all three catching the leading German. The fastest car on the track was Felipe Massa who was lapping faster than anyone.
Massa quickly dispatched of teammate Valterri Bottas and Nico Hulkenberg and set out to draw in the trio of Perez, Ricciardo and Vettel. He was quickly amongst them and this set up the thrilling finish.
The final 20 laps were fantastic! Perez had an issue with the DRS flap on this rear wing and also brake problems. He was truly never able to get close enough to Rosberg to take a swing at the lead. Ricciardo, however had no such issue. He dispatched Perez and took off in pursuit of Rosberg.
With two laps left, Ricciardo made the move and blew by Rosberg for the lead. Vettel, made a move to pass Perez and grabbed the final podium position.
But the racing was not finished. Felipe Massa and Sergio Perez had a huge, nasty crash when Perez changed his racing line triggering a mess that sent both drivers into the barriers and to the medical center. Massa labelled Perez “dangerous” and said that Perez has done this many times before. Fortunately, both drivers were released from the hospital.
Here’s a final thought.
This might be the best thing that happens for Rosberg and Hamilton in their championship battle. Why? Because, now the focus will be on the mechanical vehicle and not on Lewis and Nico for at least a few weeks. The may act as a pressure release valve for these drivers as the drivers return to Europe for the long summer. A pressure release valve, but not for long!
Pos Driver Team Time/Gap
1. Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull-Renault
2. Nico Rosberg Mercedes
3. Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault
4. Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes
5. Nico Hulkenberg Force India-Mercedes
6. Fernando Alonso Ferrari
7. Valtteri Bottas Williams-Mercedes
8. Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Renault
9. Kevin Magnussen McLaren-Mercedes
10. Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari
11. Sergio Perez Force India-Mercedes
12. Felipe Massa Williams-Mercedes
13. Adrian Sutil Sauber-Ferrari
14. Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari
Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault
Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso-Renault
Lewis Hamilton Mercedes
Kamui Kobayashi Caterham-Renault
Pastor Maldonado Lotus-Renault
Marcus Ericsson Caterham-Renault
Max Chilton Marussia-Ferrari
Jules Bianchi Marussia-Ferrari
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