After a three week break, the third round will start in the 2012 season. The team had plenty of time to work on their cars, big surprises but it will probably not give.
The last race in Malaysia was a real eye-catcher thanks to the mixed weather conditions. The surprise victory of Alonso, the magnificent journey of Sergio Perez and the amazing faint idea of Red Bull will not repeat well at the race in Shanghai. Ferrari has himself admitted that one hangs around eight tenths behind the McLaren, which is a small world at the moment. Indeed, the Italians bring a number of new parts to China, but one hopes that this will only take a small step forward. It is clear that the F2012 the entire rear end is rebuilt to the GP in Spain. Obviously you want to tinker as a mixture of the RB8 and the Sauber C31. If it does not rain again, which is not excluded due to previous forecasts, Ferrari will certainly need to hire more back. But not only the Italians have problems, very bleak it looks from Mercedes.
While the W03 is not a flop, but the race pace is simply not enough. If you consider that Mercedes over the Ferrari really should be the faster car, especially the points haul more than disappointing. Just one point is in the standings, while McLaren has 55 points. On the targeted space 3, the ailing Ferrari team stands with 35 points. Sauber has 30 points and 16 Lotus Since the field is moved into this more closely, it would already mean a huge effort if you want to advance in the course of yet P4 direction. The problem of W03 is the tire wear. It has either too much (Australia) or too little (Malaysia). In other words, you do not hit the "sweet spot" of the tire, whose best performance window is apparently also been somewhat close this year. Ross Brawn has announced that they will try to sacrifice the quality performance for more race speed, but this is also problematic. But obviously you can see at the moment no other possible answer, suggesting that it could be a fundamental problem with the suspension geometry. And that can be not so easy to change, without rebuilding the entire car new. However, China should be the Mercedes, you may also be curious to see if Nico Rosberg with the car finally get along better.
Measure of all things should be in China McLaren. The course was already the chrome arrow in the past pretty good, besides that, the car at the moment still makes the ausgewogesten impression. Somewhat surprising was the poor performance in the final stint of the race in Malaysia, worry not, however, makes the McLaren. Lewis Hamilton had his nose ahead of Jenson Button, but who also had bad luck in Malaysia. The Qualifying and Race duel between the two is likely to be something close again.
Red Bull has been heard in recent weeks little. Vettel manifests itself more optimistic about the RB8, the Mark Webber is better. You feel that you have lots of potential, but especially the lack of quality speed ensures trouble. In the race it's running though mostly better, but as a rule of thumb seems to be missing on the RB8 McLaren around three tenths. Straight Red Bull, which do not always keep on budget rumored to the voluntary guidelines can make up for this three-tenths quickly. The question is just, similar to Mercedes, if the necessary reconstruction measures can be implemented so quickly.
Clean is certainly the team of the moment. The car has a lot of potential there, especially in the rear probably some of what other teams also would like. The whole package seems to agree, at least in the race. In the qualifying, the team had been in two races problems, however, have also to do with the fact that in Q2 only once leaves the pilots on the route. The partly acting cautiously strategy seems the team here and there unnecessarily einzubremsen. However, in race trim the clean goes phenomenally well and thanks to the very low tire wear Sauber is in a tight race again a podium contender.
This is also true for the Lotus. To the team and Lotus were again the week much speculation in matters of Group Lotus ( here are taken together well). Lotus has a fast car, but suffer somewhat due to the different performance of the two drivers. Grosjean is in the quality hellishly fast, makes the race but still a lot of mistakes because he is too aggressive on the road. Raikkonen, however, makes the quality even a little trouble, but the true race pace, has as his fifth-place finish in Malaysia shown. Also, Lotus will bring new updates to China and should even fit everything, they are also a podium contender.
Besides Clean is probably Williams nennne as a surprise team. Although the FW34 by Mike Coughlin is not pretty, but correspondingly faster. Stop If the problem with the drivers. Although Senna sixth place in Malaysia might have been the maximum, what can be reached by car, but no matter how you look at it, the question of what a top rider could do with the car, just does remain. Williams consumed so far from the fact that Mercedes and Ferrari are weak, that Grosjean had to park the car twice and the Force India looks something unsorted. But if the midfield together disengaged, it will be difficult for Maldonado and Senna.
Toro Rosso and Force India do currently still a little hard. The Italiern could be expected on the basis of the inexperienced pilots still at Force India is lacking especially at speed in the qualification. The progress, however, were already visible in Malaysia, but the question remains whether the financially ailing somewhat Vijay Mallya at the moment much money can churn in his team.
One of the disappointments of the year we can confidently continue Caterham count. Renault engine and Red Bull KERS, but depends far behind the midfield and must again wrangle with Marussia whose car so far makes a good impression. In Caterham have responded and started to rebuild the technical department. Mike Gascon is still responsible, but it has made him new people to the page. Tony Fernandes has made for this year, at least come close to the points, which still seems like a utopia at the moment. Marussia makes, also thanks to the McLaren-cooperation, not such a bad impression, while HRT is as usual the rear.
The course in China is known, nothing has changed. Shanghai is one of the better Tielke courses, not quite as spectacular as Malaysia, but quite demanding. The long straights should the Mercedes are good, the infield is Red Bull and McLaren country. As already mentioned, is the weather in China to be mixed. Showers tend to be possible both on Friday and on Sunday.
Aerodynamic setup - Medium / High.
Top speed 322km / h (DRS) - 310km / h (without).
Full throttle: 55%.
Braking Percentage: 14%
Braking load: Medium
Fuel load: 148 kilos.
Loss of time per round at 10kg petrol: 0.34 seconds (normal)
Loss of time during the pit stop: 21 sec
Tires: Soft / Medium
DRS zone: A, measurement before T12, activation center of the long back straight.
The strategy for the race, it is difficult to predict. The difference between the tire compounds is around 0.3 seconds / lap. This is less than last year and offers the opportunity to try it with a one-stop strategy. This is especially true if the temperatures should be low. The track itself is not a tire eater, so it is a little on how high is the wear and tear of the individual teams. Mercedes will probably try it at least with a car with three stops, the rest of it could be more like two stops.
The transfer times are for the last time until fall rather unpleasant. The quality is on Saturday at eight clock, the race starts Sunday at 9 clock. Preliminary reports there are from 8 clock.
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