July 8, 2009
It's difficult to fathom that Jenson Button, having dominated the Turkish Grand Prix just two weeks prior, would have an incident-free Silverstone Grand Prix and yet, finish a paltry sixth.
Red Bull's dominance started in Practice one and finished on the checkered flag with Vettel a convincing first, followed by Webber (+15 secs) and Barichello (+20 or so secs).
Vettel drove a faultless race, which he was no doubt under pressure to deliver after mistakes in Turkey and Monaco cost him track positions and team points. That said, he not only won the race, but won from pole and had the fastest lap.
Webber delivered his usual "under the radar" performance. After a P3 qualifying effort that was "good without being spectacular," he salvaged his race by passing Barichello during the first round of pit stops to take second.
It's imperative that Webber beats Vettel in both races and qualifying sooner rather than later in order to avoid catching second driver disease which has taken the careers of other drivers such as Fisichella (Renault), Coulthard (McLaren), and Barichello (Ferrari & Brawn)!
Was Red Bull's success but a mere blip on the Brawn radar, or is it a more permanent sign of things to come? Depends who you ask really!
Brawn is adament that their less than average showing was caused by the cold temperatures Silverstone presented to them. This prevented their tyres (an area Brawn has always had a problem with) from reaching adequate running temperatures. As the season progresses and the average race temperature increases, they are confident performance will return.
Red Bull on the other hand, is convinced that Vettel and Webber's outstanding 1-2 performance was the result of much hard work and Adrian Newey's continued development of the RB5. Christian Horner believes that Germany and beyond will see the Red Bulls far in front.
What is certain is that whilst Brawn and Red Bull will remain at the front of the field, more prestigous teams like Ferrari and McLaren will struggle for podiums!
Bring on the German Grand Prix!
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