Dingo day afternoon in Albert Park
Australian Grand Prix
Bulls and El Matador. German wunderkind Sebastian Vettel took his second successive pole position of the season in Melbourne, steaming ahead of teammate and local favorite Mark Webber. Fernando Alonso, winner of the opening round in Bahrain, qualified third in his Ferrari.
The right call. Defending race winner and world champion Jenson Button changed to slicks, went off-track but kept his cool and smooth driving and rewarded McLaren their first win of the season. Could this be the start of reverse cage rattling in Woking?
Renault rising. Pole star Robert Kubica finished second. In the halcyon days of Flavio Briatore he was at one time part of Renault Driver Development programme. So were Kovalainen, Grosjean and Peter Windsor’s hand picked “American” (just add Latin), Jose Maria Lopez.
Home grown talent. Mark Webber made his F1 debut in Albert Park driving for fellow Aussie Paul Stoddard-owned Minardi team in 2002. Sunday was no walk in the park for him, out classed by teammate both in qualifying and race he soldiered on for ninth place finish.
Prancing in the park. Fernando Alonso, new in town in Maranello, held off a late charge from Hamilton but was unable to pass teammate Massa for a podium finish. His fourth place finish keeps him at the top of the championship table.
Hulked by Kobayashi. Rising German star and Willi Weber client Nico Hulkenberg was speared on the opening lap by the Sauber of Kamui Kobayashi. Hulkenberg and Hamilton both won GP2 titles in their rookie seasons and also won every championship they entered.
Unwilling Virgin. Gave birth by CFD to Nick Wirth designed cars, which urgently needs transplant of larger fuel tanks. Sir Richard Branson of Virgin brand fame and fortune is the rich daddy. Virgin pilots are Timo Glock and Lucas di Grassi.
Jonesy boy. The last Australian world champion Alan Jones was born in Melbourne. He gave Shadow their only Grand Prix win, Austria 1977, in a car which is now owned by an F1Weekly listener. Jones was world champion three years later in a Patrick Head designed Williams.
Party comes to town. Melbourne is one of the most popular stops on the F1 circuit. Capital of Victoria State snatched the race from Adelaide in 1996. Melbourne is now facing taste of its own medicine from Sydney. Time and Bernie will decide the outcome of this opera.
Button and his Wheel of Fortune!
— Nasir Hameed
Racing regards from California