F1 returns to Sochi in Russia’s attempt to have people remember the name of a Winter Olympics city more than two days after the event against the usual trend. Not that an F1 circuit in Nagano, Salt Lake City or Lillehammer wouldn’t be welcome.
P1 and P2 were probably the most useless F1 sessions in recent memory as the first practice was affected by the worst diesel mistake since Volkswagen. Shame about that too, as it looked likely they would enter F1 and with Red Bull. But that’s another story for later. P2 was a Sweet Surrender (pardon the pun) as the conditions were Wet, Wet, Wet. The surrender was the very few cars that bothered going out. Who could blame them? Only thing is that if it is wet on race day, wouldn’t some track time be of advantage?
Is it another Singapore-like Merc off-day? Noises were it could be before the weekend, but unfortunately it’s business as usual after Qualifying with the exception of Rosberg achieving something for a change and beating Hamilton to pole. At least Vettel is within a second giving some hope. Rain would be nice.
An engine would be nice for Red Bull as their saga continues with Ferrari saying they will give engines to Toro Rosso and two fingers to Red Bull. Can’t blame either Ferrari or Mercedes for not supplying the best chassis over the last half decade or so with a decent engine. But only a return to Renault or quitting is the end result. Will be interesting to see Red Bull’s moves back to Renault if it happens, like a man going back to his wife after a mid life crisis attempt to chase a 20 something at the pub.
If the Red Bull team leaves we could have 3 Car Teams. That’s fine by us, as F1 rarely has more than 2 ultra compeditive cars anyway, why not have another car capable of success and it will allow the fringe drivers who are often overlooked for big fat sponsorship pay packets. Anything that gives the Hulk a better drive is all good too. Only question is where the Red Bull drivers will go. I’m sure Ferrari would be interested if able to, Mercedes too. Kyvat though may find it harder.
So, to finish up are our never fail (never win) tips to follow (avoid) for tonight’s race. And the full qualifying results below.
Mercedes looks a certainty, but we took a Vettel-David Reynolds at Bathurst double @ $110 during the week, so we say Vettel. In hope.
The Force India looks quick, and the Hulk likes the wet too. So for value and other hopeful reasons we like Nico Hulkenburg for top three.
Romain Grosjean is at $11 to come 6th from 8th on the grid, and has a Merc engine. Box ticked good enough for us.
|6||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1m38.659s||1.546s|
|7||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m38.691s||1.578s|
|9||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m38.924s||1.811s|
|10||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m39.728s||2.615s|
|11||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull/Renault||1m39.214s||2.101s|
|20||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||–||–|