Sepang F1 Quick Predict on Lotus, Webber, Kubica, Todt, Virgin, Hamilton

Barry RosenbergContributor IIApril 4, 2011

Smilin' Mark Webber
Smilin' Mark WebberClive Mason/Getty Images

Mark Webber didn't look as good as I hoped he would in Australia's season opener because I wish the best for him. Mark complained of chassis flaws that left him far behind Red Bull teammate Sebastien Vettel.

I'm disappointed to observe that there appears to be little that can be done to Webber's car, so I guess he'll have to do it himself, on the track. Still, it makes one fear that the gentleman's best days are behind him.

Although Vettel won going away at Albert Park without KERS, Red Bull might use it at tracks more suitable to the Energy-recovery system.

Malaysia will serve as a test track for Pirelli during Friday practice. They'll give the teams sets of their hardest compound experimental tires. The extra hard tires were alluded to by the new tire supplier before the season began.

Now, the teams have the opportunity to experience the “super-hard” compound and provide feedback to Pirelli's director of motor sports, Paul Hembery.

Ron Dennis reportedly wept at the screening of a new documentary on his former driver, Ayrton Senna.

In this observer's opinion, Mr. Dennis was most likely moved to tears by the thought of all the potential profit that was snuffed out with the loss of the great champion.

Renault-Lotus will offer an excuse other than insufficient heat in their Pirellis for their poor performance in Malaysia.

Helmut Marko has again opened his pie hole inappropriately and I expect his criticisms of other leading teams will go into the dumper where they belong.

Fortunately, team boss Christian Horner has the wisdom to expect his competitors to improve to Red Bull's level and possibly beyond at Sepang and throughout the 2011 season.

Robert Kubica will very soon take his first steps since his disasterous rally accident in Italy.

Virgin Racing will again draw a zero at Malaysia. I hope Richard Branson endures long enough for the fledgling team to find their way to some success.

Branson must now be realizing that the 2009 Brawn team brilliance was a once-in-a-lifetime fluke.

Lewis Hamilton will do extremely well at Sepang and his McLaren teammate Jenson Button will do well too, but not as well as the Ham.

It's a shame, too, in my opinion. Jenson is everything good as a person that Lewis is not.