Mighty Brawn: Nimble Brain

raam shanker@raam_s13Contributor IMarch 28, 2009

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 26:  Ross Brawn the Team Principal of Brawn GP is seen in the paddock during previews to the Australian Formula One Grand Prix at the Albert Park Circuit on March 26, 2009 in Melbourne, Australia.  (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)

The much expected Formula One season kicked off to a phenomenal start this weekend in Melbourne. Now a little trip down memory lane to my childhood when my parents once told me, “Mighty brawn is no match for nimble brain”. Back in the days, brawn referred to muscle power. However after the qualifying, I am tempted to ring my parents and tell them “Mighty Brawn is the nimble brain”.

Full marks to the subtlety with which he has pulled a fast one on his former employers, much to their chagrin. It appears he has once again engineered an “invincible” car with the potential to re-inject life into this quasi-comatose team, formerly known as Honda.

I am all excited and want to sing praises of Jenson Button, Rubens Barrichello and Ross Brawn for pulling off a coup and upstaging the favourites. The questionable point is the fact that it is still earliest of days and the race has not even started. The saying in the paddock has always been “to finish first, first you have to finish”.

To give credit to the so called mid-range teams of Williams, Toyota, BMW and Red Bull, they’ve joined hands with Brawn to put Ferrari in P7 (Massa) and P9 (Raikkonen) respectively. The World Champion is a measly P15, one behind his team mate Kovalainen. That is the extent of damage inflicted by Brawn with his accomplices named above.

We have always known Brawn to be an excellent strategist. Some of his memorable decisions were back in Hungary 1998, whilst guiding Schumacher to victory with three stops, guiding Schumacher to his third career title in Japan 2000 and again taking Schumacher to the chequered flag in France 2004 after an incredible four stops. What else can go right for Brawn is the stepping back of Ron Dennis as Mclaren Chief and Jean Todt leaving Ferrari. This could play right into Ross Brawn’s hands psychologically.

The purpose of a spectacular qualifying can be defeated if the car does not make it past the first bend. The secret to success in this sport is not a function of how fast you can go (top speed) or how fast you can get there (acceleration) but of can you sustain the pace till the end (reliability). What could go wrong apart from the potential reliability issues is the ability and speed of Ferrari and Mclaren to redesign their cars and jump right back into the fray.

It remains to be seen if Brawn has yet again ushered in a new era in Formula One and that will only be determined in the weeks to follow. Like I mentioned earlier, it is still the earliest of days, however I am all excited because of all the obvious reasons. The only one thing that needs to be seen is whether or not I wake up in six hours time to catch the race, which means I will have to hit the shut down button ( I am not referring to Jenson here) right now.