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GP Week : Issue 56
Team-By-Team: Hungarian Gr Hamilton’s great start at the German Grand Prix had got everyone rather excited. What could he have done without the puncture? At the scene of Kovalainen’s first win, Hungary was a track on which the team felt confident. Fastest practice times for the Finn and Hamilton gave credence to that confidence and a successful weekend was a genuine hope. Ferrari’s weekend could not have gone through more contrasting fortunes. The accident that befell Felipe Massa has been explained elsewhere in this magazine, but the incident completely changed the complexion of Ferrari’s weekend. From then on their number one priority was their Brazilian driver and his health. Their motorhome was inundated with media, most of whom Practice pointed to a better weekend for BMW, with Heidfeld in particular faring well despite not being altogether happy with the balance of his car. New car parts and a modified front wing were helping out hugely but the team was under no illusions as to the task at hand. Qualifying was thus an enormous disappointment. Kubica could only muster 19th and Heidfeld 16th as both were out in Nelson Piquet had a reprieve for the Hungarian Grand Prix and with an equal car to Fernando Alonso hopes were high of a more even performance between the duo. Piquet took some time to get used to the new feel of his car but had Alonso’s data to help him. On Saturday and Piquet again failed to get even close to matching Alonso’s pace. It was as if Alonso had the newer car again, With both drivers comfortably in the top 10, the Hungarian Grand Prix weekend had got off to a good start in practice for Toyota. Some overheating issues on Trulli’s car caused some concern and lost practice time, but overall the team seemed to feel it could compete. Qualifying was therefore not what anyone had expected as both drivers failed to make it into the final qualifying 3 Could they really dream of a podium? With both drivers in the top 10 in qualifying the omens looked good. Hamilton made a brilliant start and his move on Webber was superb. From there, and following Alonso’s retirement he was the class of the field. Kovalainen wasn’t on his 2008 race-winning form but he brought home points in fifth to bag 14 out of a possible 18 points. didn’t want or need to be writing anything but who just wanted to see if there’d been any news about a driver who is universally liked. Come Sunday and the news filtering through was good. The team got down to concentrating on Kimi’s race. It reaped reward with a fantastic podium for the Finn which the team dedicated to Felipe. Get well soon chap. Q1. Traffic had been a mitigating factor but even so it was a letdown. Kubica made it up to 13th in the race while Heidfeld brought the car home in 11th. Both drivers said that with the improved car at their disposal points should have been possible. That it wasn’t will cause head-scratching. There is still a huge way to go before BMW is back to its best. as Piquet failed to make it out of Q2 while the Spaniard stormed to pole. In the race Alonso led from the off and was looking good until a botched pitstop saw him released with a loose front right. It eventually fell off, calling an end to his race. Piquet raced on to 12th but by that time Flavio had left and thus wasn’t around to see his team suspended from the next Grand Prix. Bad Times. session. Trulli was stuck in 12th and Glock was gutted to be 14th. Still, there was always the race. And what a race! Glock just loves the Hungaroring and it showed. He blasted through the field and took a deserved sixth. Actually he deserved more. Trulli also raced well for eighth. After the disappointments of qualifying a double points haul was a huge result.