Sunday, June 09, 2024

Sunday Afternoon Musings

Posting a Sunday afternoon musings instead of Sunday morning due to the afternoon start of the Canadian Grand Prix.  But I still have to talk about this cup of coffee from Greater Goods that I had this morning.  Used my normal pour over method to make this cup and it was tremendous.  Strong flavors of peach tea throughout. Just tremendous. It is such a unique cup that it explodes with the tea flavors, bergamot, and then subtle notes of peach came underneath.  Lovely bright cup.  

I'll hold off on my recommendations as I plan to post that on my Instagram page tomorrow, a very specific book related recommendation so be on the look out for that.

Formula One

The Montreal GP weekend started off interestingly enough.  Not only did the newly signed to a long term contract RB Driver Perez fall out during Q1 for the second race in a row, but his teammate failed to top the pole and settled for P2.  Another surprise was both Ferrari drivers didn’t make it out of Q2.  Mercedes sat atop the Pole with Russell in P1, McLaren did well with Norris at P3 and Piastri at P5.  The biggest concern going into the actual race on Sunday though was the weather.  It had rained some during the practice session, and threatened during qualifying, but race day looked like it could be seriously affected by weather.

Both Sauber cars had to start from the pit lane due to having to fix some their cars after qualifying.  

The Grand prix started with some rain, with cars choosing to be on the intermediates except the Haas team that was full wet tires.

Surprisingly clean start to the race.  Shots of spray at the start, but through the first few turns the cars were able to stay clean and on the track.  Initially the HAAS decision to start on Wets seemed to be a good one as they climbed up the grid, both in the top 10 through the first few laps.

By Lap 5 the Ferrari paddock was reporting to LeClerc that they were seeing engine problems with the car.  Not clear on the issues, but they were working it, doesn’t sound like it will be a good day for the red team.

Lap 6 one of the Williams cars wen toff track, but they were able to get back on which cleared the section specific yellow flag, and by lap 7 the sun started to come out which should help dry the track up.

Haas driver Kevin Magnussen went into the pits in lap 8 to switch from full wets to intermediates.

Fellow Haas Driver Nico Hulkenburg pitted at last 13, which then caused both of the cars to fall out of the top 10.  

With the track drying DRS was finally enabled at lap 18.

Lap 21 Lando was able to use that DRS to bypass Verstappen and get into P2. And then a little later in that same lap Norris passed Russell to get into p1!  Lap 25 Logan Sargent went into the wall bringing out a yellow flag and then a safety car.  Unfortunately Norris’s pace was so quick that he couldn’t pit, but everyone behind him did pit, including his McLaren teammate Piastri.  Teams were putting on another set of Inters preparing for an additional rain storm that was forecasted to be coming shortly.  Norris pits on Lap 26 putting on Inters, unfortunately he came out in third behind Verstappen and Russell behind the safety card.

Reports of rain coming down again in lap 28.

Safety car out at lap 29.

By lap 36 it looked like the rain had passed.  The question will be how long will the intermediate tires last, and if the teams will need to pit again before the race ends after lap 70.  Intermediate tires don’t tend to last very long once they are on a dry track so the teams are going to have to use some interesting strategy as the race goes on.

Ferrari ended up retiring LeClerc’s car at lap 43.  A few cars started pitting to switch from inters to slicks.  I think it may be a couple of laps to early, but expect to see more cars pit by lap 46.

Hamilton came in at lap 44 to switch from inters to Mediums.

McLaren driver Piastri went in to pit at lap 45 and switched to mediums.

Verstappen who was in P1 was called into pit at lap 45, Russell followed him, but Norris stayed out which put him in P1.  Norris is being called to Box at the end of lap 47.  He is over 20 seconds ahead of P2 and could get out ahead if there is a good pit.  McLaren puts on medium tires, but Norris wasn’t able to stay ahead of Verstappen.  As of Lap 48, Verstappen is in P1, Norris in P2, Russell in P3 and Piastri in P4.  A little over 20 laps left, can Lando make a move on his Red Bull rival?

Unfortunately Russell passed Norris in lap 50, around the same time that Max started complaining of issues with his car.  At lap 51 Russell ran wide, blew across a curb and Norris was able to get P2 back.

Lap 54 it looks like Sainz and Alton made some contact and spun each other around brining out a yellow flag and a safety car.

Sainz ended up retiring shortly there after, Hamilton pitted and switched to hard tires, and Russell got Medium tires on, both hoping that it will help him make a move through the remainder of the race.

Safety car ended after lap 58.

After Piastri and Russell got into a skirmish, Hamilton ended up passing the McLaren driver in lap 66 and into P3.

A hard fought race by all the drivers, 5 drivers fell out due to crashes or mechanical problems, but Verstappen was able to get back on top, with Norris in P2 and Russell in P3, Piastri did well and finished P5.  Overall an exciting race after the bore that was Monaco a couple of weeks ago. The off and on rain lead to some great strategies being deployed by the different teams and made for some back and forth racing.  Overall a fun race and happy for team papaya.

Some additional thoughts:
1) I’ve said it all season, but I will say it again, I don’t understand Red Bull’s love of Perez.  He has shown that he is an OK driver when everything is working, but if he is challenged he falls apart. He could well be the reason they don’t win the constructors cup this year and they won’t win it next year because of him.  So why did they re-sign him?  Because he doesn’t threaten Verstappen, and Max’s weak ego who can’t handle being challenged by a teammate.

2) McLaren continues to show they are the second best team on the grid.  Yes Ferrari is ahead in the constructors championship, but by the end of the season McLaren will be head of them.  

3) Good to see Ricciardo finish in the points today at P8.

4) Aston Martin had a rare race this season with double points with their drivers finishing P7 and P6.

5) For the season the Drivers Championship looks like: Verstappen 295, LeClerc 138, Norris 131 Sainz 108, Perez 107

6) For the season the Constructors championship looks like: Red Bull 301, Ferrari 252, McLaren 212, Mercedes 124, Aston Martin 58

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