The 2012 Formula 1 Canada Grand Prix was one for the record books. Lewis Hamilton becomes the seventh different winner in opening seven races this season. Lewis also joins Michael Schumacher and Nelson Piquet in a very elite group of drivers to win at Montreal three or more times. It was not an easy win, as Lewis struggled with slower pit stops and passed the tire worn car of Fernando Alonzo for the lead with just six laps remaining.
Alonzo gambled on a one stop strategy by completing a long first stint on the soft tire, then switching to the super-soft for the remainder twenty nine laps. The Ferrari driver looked in control until his aging tires started to give up and his lap times up to four or five seconds slower than those of the chasing pack. As such, he begun to plummet down the standings and just managed to claw into fifth finishing spot, a fraction of a second away from being dropped into sixth. Both Ferraris were very competitive this weekend after receiving several upgrades for this race. Felipe Massa finished in tenth after a freak spin during the opening laps of the race.
Sebastian Vettel scored his second pole of the season and looked dominant in the first part of the race. He appeared to be on a one stop strategy until he darted for the pits with under ten laps remaining. The fresh rubber allowed him to regain the fast pace and pass Alonzo for forth.
Perhaps, more interestingly were the results of Romain Grosjean and Sergio Perez, who finished second and third respectively. Grosjean came up from seventh on the grid, while Perez put up a great driving display coming up from fifteenth starting position. Perez’s Sauber chassis had the fastest top speed of the weekend, registering at 201 mph down the main straight.
Jenson Button’s series of bad races continued in Canada. Button cannot seem to get a handle on his McLaren and had to see himself being lapped by teammate Hamilton in the latter part of the race.
Many expected to see the Mercedes chassis be very strong down the long fast straights of the Montreal’s Circuit Gilles Villeneuve. And they were showing a lot of promise with Nico Rosberg finishing in sixth. Unfortunately, Michael did not fare as well as the trick rear wing on his Mercedes failed on lap 43.
Wow, what a season this is turning out to be! The possibly rainy weather in Britain, Germany, Hungary, and others may bring even more excitement and potentially new winners. Can’t wait to see more.
Result details HERE.
Andre Smirnov is a Software Engineer by trade and a life-long automotive enthusiast. On the weekends – you may find him at a car show, an auction, watching a race, or tinkering in the garage. When not working or spending time with the family – he often scours the internet and other media for various automotive, mechanical, and computer related information.