Well that, surely, was the prelude to the rest of this season; it’s Alonso vs McLaren for the title. Alonso pretty much out there on his own, McLaren surely now have to decide to use Jenson Button to help Lewis Hamilton win the title.
The McLaren is faster than the Ferrari and Button can stop Alonso scoring, just as he would surely have knocked him off the podium had his McLaren not let him down again today. Lewis’s win takes a chunk out of Alonso’s lead. More than ever Alonso needs a good wing man. Someone like Sergio Perez maybe.
The Mexican was sensational today, starting tenth and finishing within sight of Hamilton. Why-oh-why did Ferrari dither way back and not sign Perez from Monaco onwards? I suspect they are thinking the same right now. The contracts wouldn’t have been a problem. We are talking about Ferrari. Massa’s best race of the year saw him finish fourth, but he still doesn’t look anywhere near his team-mate.
It’s not won yet, but it’s possible now to see Hamilton racing behind the number one next year — and that can only make him worth even more gazillions of dollars to Mercedes or indeed to McLaren. Gosh, someone, somewhere has had some fun calling McLaren’s poker face in the last week or so.
Still, a quality problem for McLaren and Lewis. Over at Red Bull (remember them?) there will be a lot a faces buried in hands. The team hasn’t had a result as bad as that in well over two years, neither car finishing and, especially galling for the reigning world champion, a drive through penalty before the retirement. We’ve got the Sky on now and we are awaiting an especially pouty Sebastian Vettel. Webber meanwhile will be struggling to find his ‘no worries mate…” mode.
And Mercedes? Well, we just don’t know. Michael Schumacher only just failed to overhaul Kimi Raikkonen for fifth after yet another drive which just seemed to start well, go nowhere then end well. We are starting to wonder whether Mercedes’ real problem is that neither of its drivers is the real deal; Michael not as good as he was, Nico not as good as we want them to be.
Small wonder they’ve decided they need someone like Lewis Hamilton. Today’s result won’t have made it any easier for Lewis to make his mind up.