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Reflecting on Bahrain

Crash.net contributor Dan Connor reflects on the fourth round of the F1 season from the Sakhir circuit in Bahrain
Young team-mates causing headaches for senior drivers

It may be coming to that time in certain drivers careers where a world championship is looking an ever improbable feat, issues with the chassis seem to mount up on race weekends and worst of all, they're feeling the heat from their young team-mate.

This certainly seems to be the case for McLaren's Jenson Button of late, especially on reflection of the Bahrain Grand Prix last weekend. Button has been very outspoken of the uncompetitive nature of this year's chassis, and his title charge appears to be in tatters after just round four. His results so far suggest the McLaren is capable of moving forward in race conditions, but Button now has a new headache to nurture in his team-mate.

Sergio Perez certainly made Button aware of his presence during the race on Sunday as the two McLaren's consistently squabbled for track position throughout. On one occasion Perez even touched the rear right tyre of Button and was fortunate to not cause any front wing damage or even a puncture to the 2009 world champion.

Button reacted angrily during his post-race interviews, saying Perez 'overstepped the mark' and needed to 'calm down'. Equally, Perez owned up to his racing being a little 'risky', but much like Sebastian Vettel's apology to Red Bull and Mark Webber after last month's Malaysian Grand Prix, the Mexican can head to Barcelona with the confidence and result under his belt.

It is now becoming the case where the senior members of the F1 grid are becoming increasingly frustrated with the young guns in the field. But this has to be the case for any visual progression to be seen from the younger team-mate. Button and Webber, both at least ten years senior to their partners, have to delve into the memory bank and remember the motives behind the actions of the less experienced.

Obviously Vettel's case for his actions in Malaysia could be considered a little more legitimate, considering he has beaten Mark Webber in each of the last five seasons and three of those resulting in World Championship's. It is a situation that seems to have finally taken its toll with Webber, who has been linked with a WEC drive with Porsche next season. But for Jenson Button, it is now important he extinguishes the flame sharply.

If Perez were to beat Button in this year's drivers' championship and deliver a race win or two come November, it could be the beginning of the end for Jenson. Momentum and inevitably McLaren backing the younger product could see a shift in ranking at the team as Perez proves his hunger for success.

Di Resta shows his worth

Many considered Sergio Perez's appointment as McLaren's second driver in 2013 to be a serious dent to the career aspirations of Paul Di Resta. The Scot was a rumoured candidate for the seat, but was overlooked for the Mexican, leaving him with no option but to remain with Force India after two frustrating seasons with the team.

But it may be a case of third time lucky for Di Resta this season, following promising pace and a heroic drive in Bahrain that saw his narrowly miss the podium to finish fourth. Force India currently lie in the middle tier of pace behind Red Bull Lotus and Ferrari, but are providing a stern challenge to the likes of McLaren and Sauber.





Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
21.04.2013- Race, Start of the race
21.04.2013- Race, Start of the race
21.04.2013- Race, Start of the race, Mark Webber (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB9
19.04.2014- Qualifying, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05
19.04.2014- Qualifying, Esteban Gutierrez (MEX) Sauber F1 Team C33
19.04.2014- Qualifying, Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Scuderia Ferrari F14T
19.04.2014- Qualifying, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Infiniti Red Bull Racing RB10
19.04.2014- Qualifying, Fernando Alonso (ESP) Scuderia Ferrari F14T
19.04.2014- Qualifying, Jenson Button (GBR) McLaren Mercedes MP4-29
19.04.2014- Qualifying, Fernando Alonso (ESP) Scuderia Ferrari F14T
19.04.2014- Qualifying, Adrian Sutil (GER) Sauber F1 Team C33
19.04.2014- Qualifying, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Infiniti Red Bull Racing RB10
19.04.2014- Qualifying, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Infiniti Red Bull Racing RB10
19.04.2014- Qualifying, Fernando Alonso (ESP) Scuderia Ferrari F14T
19.04.2014- Qualifying, Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Infiniti Red Bull Racing RB10
19.04.2014- Qualifying, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05
19.04.2014- Qualifying, Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Infiniti Red Bull Racing RB10
19.04.2014- Qualifying, Fernando Alonso (ESP) Scuderia Ferrari F14T

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John - Unregistered

April 24, 2013 8:10 PM

@"It seems criminal that such a talent as Fernando Alonso has not claimed a drivers' title for more than six seasons now. What must sit even worse with the Spaniard is that he could and maybe should have had at least three more since his back-to-back title wins in 2005 and 2006." His own mistakes are to blame there. Nobody made him crash at Suzuka in 2007 and 2012, among other errors.

John - Unregistered

April 24, 2013 8:03 PM

"Last year perhaps wasn't Alonso's to lose, but heck did he deserve it. He wrestled an uncompetitive Ferrari to three wins and twelve podium finishes, but still lost out to the raw pace of the Red Bull by just three points." Twaddle. The Red Bull was distinctly lacking any any "raw pace" for most of the season. Alonso's success last year was done to good luck - or to the absence of the bad luck which hit Vettel and Hamilton so often.



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