F411 Championship: Round 12 – German Grand Prix
10pts Jenson Button: Should he stay or should he go? Button is clearly in the camp of "the grass is always greener on the other side". He has a contract with BAR and he tries to go to Williams. He has a contract with Williams and he wants to stay at BAR (apparently). Perhaps he's just staying true to his (little) British roots: "I want that one."
8pts Kimi Raikkonen: It all looked so easy, yet somehow it didn't work out. As it's often pointed out, if it weren't for all these retirements he'd be leading the championship. But by that logic if it weren't for the other nineteen cars Doornbos would have won his debut race. Makes you think, huh?
6pts Michael Schumacher: An impressive display, though he must have been wishing it'd rain. ITV spoilt that by giving Jim Rosethal and Tony Jardine umbrellas. Sod's law dictates that it only rains when you don't have one. I'm not sure what ITV were up to there, there wasn't anyone in the background with a brolly. It was almost as though they were trying to say to the viewers "Look! It might rain! Please keep watching, it'll be exciting. We promise." Rosenthal seemed to be loving it, but Jardine just looked embarrassed.
5pts Christijan Albers: He's now the clear lead driver at Minardi. Whatsmore he finished ahead of both Jordans, a Sauber and a Toyota. Admittedly there were good reasons for that, but thirteenth from a race with only one and half retirements is good going. And the fact that he's the best Dutch driver in F1 suddenly means something.
4pts David Coulthard: A fair response to Louise Goodman's questions about a possible strike. But having read this article I think it's all a little clearer. Oh, but he drive well though.
3pts Robert Doornbos: I do like how he's nicknamed Doorknobs. I'd stumbled across this before as a possible pseudonym after his name was run through a spellchecker. The only disappointment is that he replaced Patrick Firestarter, I wonder what Kim Reckoned (Go figure) to that?
2pts Fernando Alonso: As the commentary team noted, he does like to inform everyone how many races he's won. I wonder how he'd deal with a season like Schumacher had last year. Feet? If McLaren's reliability doesn't improve he might have to take yoga lessons.
1pt Ralf Schumacher: Everyone gives him a hard time, but he's starting to rack up a fair few points. Besides I felt sorry for him because my Dad (who watches all the Grands Prix) asked me Michael Schumacher and Nick Heidfeld were the only German drivers.
-1pt Giancarlo Fisichella: His latest tactic seems to be to hide in the Grands Prix so his bosses don't know what he's up to. They're not going to give him the boot if they don't know he's there to begin with.
-2pts Rubens Barrichello: Clearly Rubens got it all wrong at Hockenheim. Schumacher's strategy was to get in front and just hold everyone up at the end, and he got four points for it. The only people Barrichello seemed likely to hold up on those rock-like Bridgestones were the Jordans and the Minardis. For Chrissakes, he was battling with Villeneuve on the first lap!
-3pts Narain Karthikeyan: At first it was cute, all this sideways stuff, but now it's starting to get a bit sad. Monteiro's starting to make him look silly.
-4pts Tiago Monteiro: I know it was only Villeneuve he smashed into, but it was still clumsy.
-6pts Juan Pablo Montoya: No, no, no Juan Pablo! You could see Ron Dennis seething post-qualifying. It's not often you hear anything from Dennis that stays in your head on account of his extraordinary dullness, but "All he had to do was make it round the last corner and we'd have been one-two" will probably ring in Montoya's ears for a while.
-10pts Jacques Villeneuve: Villeneuve's clearly so pissed off with Sauber that he's just going to try and destroy as much bodywork as possible. He was like a little kid on a computer game trying to have as many big crashes as possible then spending hours watching the replays.
10pts BAR: Finally they're picking up where they left off last season, about time! Still can't get close to McLaren and Renault though.
6pts Red Bull: The miracles continue. After twelve rounds of the 2004 season in a McLaren, David Coulthard had nineteen points. After twelve rounds of the 2005 season in a Red Bull, David Coulthard has… nineteen points.
4pts Renault: As Fernando Alonso pointed out it's no good being quickest only in the first 30 laps. McLaren's well found unreliability seems to be handing Renault the championship on a plate, escargot 'n'all.
3pts Minardi: Seeing how this car has to last them until about 2023 they'd better make the most of being the second worst team, it's probably not going to last for very long.
2pts Sauber: I was most interested to hear about the mechanic hitting Villeneuve on the head. Two points just for that. Personally I wouldn't want the person in charge of gallons of fuel to be pissed off with me. Wonder what Jos Verstappen did in '94.
1pt Toyota: The only thing I can think of to say about Toyota's German Grand Prix was that they were there.
-1pt Ferrari: Barrichello was barely a second quicker than Albers in qualifying. What on earth is going on? The only sensible explanation I can think of is that the nine "rebel" teams have put sugar in the tanks.
-3pts Williams: Poor.
-4pts Jordan: I was watching the official review of the 2000 season (it's terrible, they don't put much action in, for instance they only show Hakkinen's move on Schumacher at Spa once. And my lord does the narrator have an annoying voice) and there was a bit about Jordan getting Honda engines for 2001 with Eddie Jordan saying if the team didn't win the world championship with Honda it would be a poor reflection on him. Ahem.
-10pts McLaren: They used to have it right in the old days. Give Mika Hakkinen the good car and Coulthard the duffer. You can almost imagine Montoya sneaking into the garages on Saturday nights and swapping the numbers over to make sure it works out okay for him.