Euro fighter

Lewis Hamilton took a convincing pole at the European GP in Valencia today, confirming that his McLaren is now genuinely fast and that his first win of the year in Hungary wasn’t simply a fluke.

Lewis is running a new version of the MP4-24 that has a 7cm shorter wheelbase to improve weight distribution. The modification hasn’t been made to teammate Heikki Kovalainen’s car, but the McLarens still managed to get their first front row lockout.

Heikki has been told to step his game up or risk losing his seat for 2010, and from today’s performance he seems intent on staying put. However, team boss Martin Whitmarsh has said Heikki must find more pace in the races, so we’ll have to keep an eye on how he performs tomorrow.

The McLarens’ KERS should help him and Lewis to scamper off down the road from the start though, so he shouldn’t have too much to worry about. Unless he crashes…

One driver who does have things to worry about is Jenson Button, who only managed to get his Brawn into fifth place on the grid, behind title rival Sebastian Vettel.

This may not be great news for the Brit, but it should provide great viewing for us as Jenson tries to get ahead of the Red Bull driver. Will Button’s teammate Rubens Barrichello – who starts third tomorrow – be a good sport and hold Vettel up? Or is he going to fight for a win himself?

Romain Grosjean has already done a better job for Renault than Nelson Piquet did – the rookie’s in 14th – but Felipe Massa stand-in Luca Badoer was utterly rubbish and starts plum last for the race.

Ferrari could surely have found someone faster to replace the injured Brazilian, so who would you put in that seat for the next race?

I’m thinking that Ferrari should just let each of us do a lap, because we certainly couldn’t do much worse than Badoer.

Give us your predictions for the race tomorrow, and check BBC Sport for a full grid line-up.

Comments are now closed