Delayed Race Notes: Hungarian Grand Prix 2009

[Preface – Due to accountancy studies I fell behind with the editing of these posts. They were written during the live BBC coverage as usual, save for the race result and points. Anything in italics in square brackets was written during the edit, just like this paragraph.]

Formula 1 ING Magyar Nagydig 2009
/ 2009 Formula 1 ING Hungarian Grand Prix
Circuit: Hungaroring
Location: Budapest, Hungary
Distance: 70 laps

Coverage: BBC One / BBC Radio 5 Live[*]
Anchor: Jake Humphrey
Analysts in the paddock: David Coulthard (DC) and Eddie Jordan (EJ)

R5 commentary[*]: David Croft (Crofty) and Anthony Davidson (Ant)
R5 pitlane[*]: Holly Samos

Tyre selection (red): SS / S / M / H

[*for many years the BBC has held the UK radio rights to F1. In ’09 they also picked up the TV rights and they now offer an alternate feed on digital television, combining TV pics with radio commentary. I tend to use this feed.]

Coverage begins at 12.10pm. Update on the season so far.

Hungaroring is 14 corners in roughly 3 miles. I can’t see how that many corners in such a small space can produce good racing – and it doesn’t at this track.

Massa is in a stable condition after his horrible accident yesterday.
Ted reports. Felipe didn’t need another lap as he was already through, but went again to make sure. Failure on Barrichello’s car when a spring fell off at 140mph, 3 seconds later Massa drove into the path of the spring.
It cut a 4″ groove out of the helmet shell but it remained structurally intact.

Luca Colajanni, Ferrari – He was concious when he arrived at hospital, he went through medical checks, he had a cut in his forehead, bone damage to his skull, brain concussion. He has to undergo and operation.

Ross Brawn – Heavy object, 1.5 – 2 pounds, a kilo, at those speeds its a serious impact. Spring is from the gearbox. It is part of the assembly, we’ve raced it all season, it is subject to a lot of testing. Not happened before, first occurrence. We need to understand what happened.

Ted says surgery was successful and he remains stable in intensive care.

Colajanni again, live this time – He went for a CT scan which had a negative outcome, which is positive, now he sleeps. His family have just arrived from Brazil. Now he sleeps, we just have to wait.

[Thankfully, as we all know now, Felipe is well on the way to recovery! He’s very lucky.]

David Coulthard – It’s been a freakish week [with Surtees the week before]. We just have to look at the positive side of this, Felipe should make a full recovery, we should move on and try and stop things falling off cars in future.

Eddie Jordan has a spring from a GP2 car to illustrate the size/weight, says the F1 version is very similar.

DC – Felipe is a well-liked member of the drivers’ association. Ironically enough the part that has fallen off has been used since the invention of racing.

Qualifying update with Lee
Alguersuari struggled in his first Q session.
Force India had to repair Sutil’s car after a big hit in practice. He says 18th is not so bad..
Button could only do one Q3 run because they were changing the spring on his car after Barrichello’s failed, the team and the FIA wanted to make sure it was safe.
Hamilton starts 4th, his best of the season.

Then the official timing system went down! Alonso was going to each driver asking their time! Each driver gets their own time on the dash so they knew that, but not what others had.

Vettel (P2) – Our biggest threat is coming from behind with the KERS cars.
Alonso (P1) – Car worked fine in qualifying, the most stressful time was in parc ferme afterwards asking ‘what time you did’, what time you did’!

Pat Symonds – We knew what we’d done, it was a little bit better than we expected but we didn’t expect pole.
DC – Did you think you went too short on strategy?
PS – We came here to be aggressive, we knew tyres would be a big part, they are marginal here and a three stop is not a silly thing to do.
He says Piquet has the same car as Alonso this weekend, completely identical.

Nelson has been complaining because his drive is under threat. Yesterday in the quali show we learned he must score half the points of Alonso to keep his drive and he hasn’t done that – but he says he hasn’t had the car.

The grid has moved forward to fill Massa’s space, so only the top 9 ran their fuel load in qualifying.

Grid from BlogF1 (thanks for the shout!):
http://blogf1.co.uk/2009/07/25/hungary-2009-the-grid/

Ollie puts together a great grid line-up which you should check out before each race. My little summary pales into comparison:

Alonso, Vettel
Webber, Hamilton
Rosberg, Kovalainen
Raikkonen, Button
Nakajima, Buemi
Trulli, Barrichello
Glock, Piquet
Heidfeld, Fisichella
Sutil, Kubica
Alguersuari

Piece with Mark Webber cycling with Jake. Says winning was “total emotion” and the next two races will decide the championship. [erm, maybe not!]

12.30 and the pitlane is open, cars are leaving for the grid over the next 15 mins.

Refuelling piece with Martin Brundle and Force India. Refuelling was reintroduced to F1 in 1994.
The refueller delivers ‘clean’ fuel (road fuel with a small amount of biofuel) at 12.1 litres per second.
Sometimes the first rig fails, a reserve rig is on standby. Force India have a reserve crew ready. At Brawn they hand the spare hose to the main refueller.
The filler on the car is designed for the height and angle of the man doing the refuelling – assuming the car stops in the right place it should make things as smooth as possible.
Martin – Enjoy it while you can, refuelling is banned for 2010.

GRIDWALK – Jake, Eddie, David
The Hungarian GP attracts fans from across Europe, there are flags from everywhere in the stands. Martin joins them briefly and then walks off to start the Gridwalk proper – with EJ! This can only go well.

Martin says it has been 26 years since EJ was on a Formula 3 grid telling MB he’s going to beat Ayrton Senna.

EJ – Your thoughts are with Massa but you have to put it to one side and focus on your job.

Little argument already! Martin saying he was upset in the Imola ’94 race when he wasn’t told what was going on, EJ defending his situation saying the teams didn’t know either, they were told he was okay, until they got on the plane to come home.

Button: We’ve got a lot of fuel on board. The KERS cars are in front of me, which is good because they are aiming at the Red Bulls. It would be lovely to win this race but the most important thing is to finish in front of the Red Bulls, I’m not sure Alonso is going to be a factor in this race.

Martin asks EJ about championship strategy. Let them race or focus on one driver, shouldn’t RBR concentrate on Vettel?
EJ says RBR haven’t made that decision yet, and with Mark Webber’s recent races you can’t rule him out, he could be the dark horse.
MB – Absolutely.

Webber: Its a long race. Different people have different ideas about tyres. I’m looking to get away clean and get in Alonso’s tow and try and get Sebastien. The Williams is no slouch off the line either, it’s going to be aggressive to turn one.

MB: KERS. Ferrari have got it, McLaren is the only team who’ve made it work.

They find Flav and Bernie!
EJ (arm around Bernie): Do you remember me?
BE: No.
EJ: Why haven’t you done signed Concorde yet?
BE: I can’t write.
MB: Flavio, is Alonso driving with you next year?
FB: For the moment he’s with us, we see race by race.

Evasive Bernie.. Martin bails out to go to the Hungarian National Anthem. Probably a good thing, that interview could have been even more embarrassing than it was. (not for the first time this year, there is no singing with this anthem.. maybe it doesn’t have words?)

Ferrari mechanics gathered with a pitboard: Forza Felipe

FUEL LOADS
Alonso only has 29kg of fuel on board. Fuel-corrected, the Red Bulls were fastest with Vettel on pole, then Webber. Button is well placed because he saved 4 laps of fuel compared to the others in qualifying.

Martin Whitmarsh saying they hope the KERS will help them jump a few cars at the start, they want to challenge for a podium with both drivers.

Guys are filling again to hit the next mark.. A check of the points shows Button leading Vettel by 21 points, and Brawn ahead of Red Bull by 19.5 points.

Pick a winner in one word?
DC – Have to go with Red Bull, Vettel.
EJ – Hamilton by a big margin.
JH – That wasn’t one word but it was quicker than usual.

FOM Intro

BBC One crosses to Jonathan Legard and Martin Brundle.
I cross to Freeview channel 302 to have the same pictures but with the BBC Radio feed of David Croft and guest commentator Johnny Herbert – Anthony Davidson is at Spa for the FIA GT 24 Hours.

Cars are away for the formation lap. This will be a 70 lap race.

Extreme tyre warming as they arrive on the grid!

1.2.3.4.5…GO!

Banging wheels at the start, Kimi tries to barge his way through the Red Bulls and Lewis touches wheels with a Red Bull as well.

Start of Lap 2. Adrian Sutil pits with damage, he’s being wheeled back into the garage.

Replays:

Lewis and Kimi both try for the same space in the gap between RBRs. Kimi backs out and Lewis passes both.
Onboard LH: KERS off the start. Webber repasses him out of turn one.

After the shake up of the start the order is:
Alonso, Webber, Hamilton, Raikkonen, Rosberg, Kovalainen, Vettel, Button, Nakajima, Trulli, Piquet, Glock, Kubica, Buemi, Heidfeld, Barrichello, Fisichella, Alguersuari
Sutil is listed as RETIRED on the live timing. What happened to Rubens?

Holly Samos on 5Live says Sutil’s car is overheating, they will try to go back out later.

L5 Hamilton on the KERS passes Webber with ease.

L6 Raikkonen with KERS is catching Webber now.

Hamilton just set Fastest Lap.

L8 He’s done another FL and is 3/10ths faster than Alonso, Webber and Raikkonen.

L9 The reverse situation a little further back with Vettel on the tail of Kovalainen – but Seb can’t pass because Heikki can defend with KERS.

L11 Button on the radio. Seems to have tyre problems? Hard ot hear him through the noise.

“Incident involving Car 4 under investigation”
That’s Kimi – the wheel-banging start?

L13 Alonso pits after completing 12 laps. He’s out in from of Piquet, behind Trulli. Immediately he’s off the road, vibrating front right.
The wheel has come off! It is bouncing down the road, and luckily comes to a rest by a barrier before anyone else comes along – that could have been much much worse. Yellows in that area only.

He slowly makes it back to the pits for a replacement but he is now last.

L16 Hamilton leads and is setting fastest laps every lap now the yellows are clear. He’s 4.2sec up over Webber.

Alonso pits once more and it seems his race may be over.

L18 Nakajima is catching Button but Jenson is much lighter on fuel.

L20 Both Webber and Raikkonen pit. Webber is slow away, he almost hits Raikkonen!! Expect a penalty for dangerous release. Webber under pressure and passed by Glock.

L21 Hamilton pits, so does Rosberg. Rosberg slots in between Glock and Webber but Webber passes him!

L22 Kovalainen and Vettel come in together. Sebastien has a very long stop – we saw RBR struggle with Mark Webber’s stop, same problem here or did they fuel Vettel long?

L23 Naikajima in – wouldn’t normally mention it but he could get points this week!

Piquet vs Nakajima! Piquet wins that battle.. for 14th..

Button radio: We have to go long, would you like prime or option? “We know the car doesn’t work with prime.”

Button pits and emerges behind Barrichello – and Fisichella passes him in turn one as well. Button will probably be trapped behind Giancarlo for some time now, Crofty says Fisi isn’t pitting for another 6 laps.

L27 Vettel is on the radio saying something broke on the car.
Replays: Smoke from the car. Barrichello passes him. The car seems to be dropped down at an angle.
Vettel pits and they are changing the front wing. They are carefully checking the front left wheel.
He’s back out.

L29 Alguesuari pits, a nice solid first F1 pit stop!
Fisichella is in one lap later.

L31 Something still wrong with Vettel’s car, looks very hard to control. He pits and the team rolls it into the garage, day over.

L32 Button is complaining again. “How, how can this car be so bad??”

L33 Glock pits from 3rd, he’s got himself ahead of Button with that long run.

Barrichello has pitted and drops back from 7th to 13th.

Order at half distance (lap 35)

Hamilton, Raikkonen +6.6, Webber +18.6 to LH, Kovalainen +19.5, Rosberg +21.1, Glock +35.3, Trulli +41.0, Button +44.9, Piquet +45.9, Nakajima +46.8, Heidfeld, Kubica, Barrichello, Buemi, Fisichella, Alg.

Lewis team radio: Pace is good. We’ve got 3 or 4 tenths on Kimi.

Kovalainen is pressuring Webber, which is good to see. Heikki seemed to be nowhere earlier – although is this down to Mark being on the soft tyre and the others still on the supersoft?

L40 Buemi runs wide on his in-lap. He is the first of the second-stoppers and is now last.

Shots of small boy having his pass autographed by Bernie. RUN. RUN WHILE YOU STILL CAN

Holly with Vettel: In the first corner I had contact with Kimi. He hit my front left and that was the reason the pit stop took very long, to change the front left tyre, all of a sudden it was game over and the front left suspension gave up.

L45 Kovalainen pits and takes the soft, which is the harder of the two compounds this week.

L46 Kimi Raikkonen pits but he can’t get going again… he’s slow away and rejoins having lost 4 or 5 seconds.

L47 Lewis Hamilton pits and rejoins still leading.

Everyone is changing to the soft tyre for the last stint – except Mark Webber who can use the faster supersofts.

L50 Rosberg pits, is out in 5th. Good points for he and Williams this week!

L51 Mark Webber pits and is out just ahead of Rosberg for 4th, he actually maintains 3rd position because Glock got ahead of him in that stop, and he’s soon to pit.

L54 Glock is right on the tail of Raikkonen but does need that stop. Kimi is actually costing Timo time.

L56 Hamilton radio – he’s turning his engine down.
Since he has a 17 second lead over Raikkonen that’s probably a reasonable thing to do.
Button pits, a lap later Nakajima pits.

L58 Barrichello pits now.

L59 5Live discussing whether Glock is pitting. He’s taking his time over it. There’s no way he could have run the supersofts this long though.

Trulli pits, so Glock should be next. Trulli is out just behind Button.

10 laps to go.

L61 Timo Glock pits from 3rd and gets out on a clear track, other than a lapped Toro Rosso a little way behind him.

Holly Samos: The aim for Rubens Barrichello is to overtake the two cars ahead of him on soft tyres, he is on supersofts.

Rubens is 10th, behind Trulli and Nakajima. Points to 8th remember. Finally, Trulli has developed himself a little train. He just can’t help himself.

L66, 5 to go. Mark Webber just set the fastest lap its too late now Mark. He’s 5 seconds behind Kimi but there aren’t enough laps to make the move.

The last 10-15 laps have been really dull.

2 to go.

Final Lap. Obligatory pointless shot of his dad and girlfriend. Crofty says Hamilton hasn’t even scored a point for six races (Bahrain).

Lewis Hamilton wins!!!

Raikkonen 2nd, Webber 3rd

Parc Ferme
Lewis is bouncing around!

Green room thing.

Podium
Anthem
Trophies… really very strange trophies..
Champagne!

We await the result of the stewards investigation into Kimi’s incident – he could yet be DQ’d or dropped back.

Back to BBC1 for Jake/DC/EJ.

Button with Lee:

Friday our pace was good on the option, everyone else struggled with graining. Today after 4 laps my tyres were destroyed, I had rear graining and couldn’t keep with the cars in front. I don’t know why we’re graining the tyres today. We’ve had two updates on the car but they shouldn’t unbalance the car in any way. The other teams have improved but our car is not what it was to drive a few weeks ago.

Press conference with James Allen:

Lewis in his shiny suit:

An incredible feeling to be back here after what seems a long time away. I’m so proud of the guys, they never give up. We didn’t expect to win this weekend.

Kimi in his oversize hat:

I made a very good start, that defintely helped. The gap stayed more or less the same all the time, then I has some issues on the last pit stop. Its difficult to challenge for the win right now but we’re closer than expected. Difficult weekend for the team but this is something positive at least.

Mark, the orange squash hog according to @SniffPetrol:

I was worried about the length of the stint so it was difficult to know what tyre to put on. Our guys and Renault have a lot to be proud of.

BBC1 are out of here ASAP to cross to Donington Park for live MotoGP, I’m hitting Red Button for the F1 Forum post-race debrief which I won’t note-take as it is quite long.

Race Result

Pos Driver Gap Pts
1 Hamilton 70 laps 10
2 Räikkönen 11.5sec 8
3 Webber 16.8sec 6
4 Rosberg 26.9sec 5
5 Kovalainen 34.3sec 4
6 Glock 35.2sec 3
7 Button 55.0sec 2
8 Trulli 68.1sec 1
9 Nakajima 68.7sec
10 Barrichello 69.2sec
11 Heidfeld 70.6sec
12 Piquet 71.5sec
13 Kubica 74.0sec
14 Fisichella 1 lap
15 Alguersuari 1 lap
16 Buemi 1 lap
DNF Vettel 41 laps suspension
DNF Alonso 55 laps fuel pump
DNF Sutil 69 laps engine
DNS Massa n/a accident

Drivers’ Championship

Driver Prev HUN Total
1 Button 68 2 70
2 Webber 45.5 6 51.5
3 Vettel 47 47
4 Barrichello 44 44
5 Rosberg 20.5 5 25.5
6 Trulli 21.5 1 22.5
7 Massa 22 22
8 Hamilton 9 10 19
9 Räikkönen 10 8 18
10 Glock 13 3 16
11 Alonso 13 13
12 Kovalainen 5 4 9
13 Heidfeld 6 6
14 Buemi 3 3
15 Bourdais 2 2
16 Kubica 2 2

Webber overhauls Vettel for 2nd.
Rosberg and Trulli pass the out-of-action Massa.
Lewis and Kimi finally make some in-roads into the field, pushing Alonso back.

Constructors’ Championship

Constructor Prev HUN Total
1 Brawn 112 2 114
2 Red Bull 86.5 6 92.5
3 Toyota 40.5 4 44.5
4 Ferrari 29 8 37
5 McLaren 14 14 28
6 Williams 20.5 5 25.5
7 Renault 13 13
8 BMW 8 8
9 Toro Rosso 5 5
10 Force India 0 0

Red Bull closes on Brawn for the 4th consecutive race.
Ferrari are beginning to challenge Toyota for 3rd.
McLaren make their first big gain of the season to double their score and leap into 5th.
Williams are establishing themselves in 6th with a consistent string of results.

That’s it from Hungary! Hope these notes were in some way useful. The next race is the European Grand Prix around the harbour of Valencia after the summer break, on 23rd August.

Hungarian flag courtesy of 4 International Flags

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