• Spanish Grand Prix

Driver-by-driver run down

ESPNF1 Staff
May 9, 2010 « Massa bemoans difficult race | »

Mark Webber - 1st A faultless drive from lights to flag was rewarded with 25 points and Webber's first race victory of the season. He never looked under threat and at times appeared to be holding plenty in reserve, as he maintained a steady gap over Hamilton. He is now fourth in the championship, just seven points behind team-mate Vettel.

Fernando Alonso - 2nd About as good a result as he could have hoped for in front of his home fans, especially considering Ferrari's pace relative to the opposition. He started setting very quick laps towards the end of the race, which is proof that the F10 is easy on its tyres, but didn't have enough in reserve to tackle Hamilton while the McLaren was still on track.

Sebastian Vettel - 3rd He made the best of a bad situation, taking 15 points on a day when he could have faced a DNF. Still, the problem with his brakes in the closing stages underlined the fragility of the RB6 and prevented him completing a Red Bull one-two on a circuit where it was clearly dominant.

Michael Schumacher - 4th While the updates to the Mercedes haven't seen it make any in-roads into the top-three's dominance (Schumacher finished one minute off Webber), they have certainly helped Schumacher with the balance of the car. For the first time this year he outperformed his machinery and held off the quicker McLaren of Button and the Ferrari of Massa. His blocking into turn one also confirmed that he has lost none of his race-craft in his three years out of the sport.

Jenson Button - 5th A botched pit stop saw him get stuck behind Schumacher for the majority of the race and lose touch with the leaders. His attempts at passing the Mercedes lacked the necessary commitment up the inside, but with Schumacher in the opposing car it was understandable why. He is still at the top of the drivers' championship but will need to up his game again if he is going to stay there.

Felipe Massa - 6th It was a result that summed up his race weekend. He was never on the pace of the front runners and failed to attack Button when the opportunity arose behind Schumacher. With Alonso finishing forty seconds up the road, he will need to go back to the drawing board with race engineer Rob Smedley.

Adrian Sutil - 7th Best of the rest is about as good as Sutil could have hoped for this weekend. He made a good start and then had to maintain a solid pace to keep Kubica at bay in the second half of the race.

Michael Schumacher was holding off cars all day © Sutton Images
Robert Kubica - 8th Solid if not spectacular for Kubica. A bad first lap dropped him down the order and he slowly made his way back through the field thanks to a well-timed pit stop and other driver's misfortunes. Damage to the car in the first lap held him back slightly but the pace of the car was still good.

Rubens Barrichello - 9th A fantastic start made up for a dreadful qualifying run on Saturday. After that, just staying out of trouble was enough to see him move up the field and take two valuable points.

Jaime Alguersuari - 10th A point was a good result but the young Spaniard won't be able to help but wonder what he could have achieved at his home race. A good start moved him up the field but a poor pit stop negated his good work. He then tangled with Chandhok while trying to lap the HRT, wiping off the nose of his opponent. Quite rightly he was hit with a drive-through penalty, but did well to fight back through the field to tenth. He also pulled the move of the day to pass Hulkenberg around the outside into turn one.

Vitaly Petrov - 11th After a cautious start he had a relatively quiet race. He'll be happy to notch up another finish but his car was better than the two that ended up directly in front of him. He had a good scrap with Kobayashi in the second half of the race and didn't make any silly mistakes.

Kamui Kobayashi - 12th Another question of what could have been, he was pushed wide by Kubica in turn three at the start of the race and never really recovered. The car was quick, which will be reassuring, and could have challenged for points.

Nico Rosberg - 13th It was a disastrous weekend for Rosberg in the new Mercedes. He was pushed wide at the start by Kubica and then fell right down the order in the first stops when his car had to be pushed back into its box after the front-right wheel nut failed to tighten. From then on the car appeared to get worse and worse and even a fresh set of soft tyres didn't remedy the problems.

The remains of Lewis Hamilton's car © Sutton Images
Lewis Hamilton - 14th He came within two laps of taking a podium, only for the front-left tyre to let go at high speed. Although the reason for the failure has yet to be confirmed, Hamilton said he was aware of the problem in the closing stages and was trying to nurse the car home. Up until that point, he put in a brilliant performance and for most of the race had Vettel covered for pace.

Tonio Liuzzi - 15th It was a miserable weekend for the Italian after he lost a lot of set-up time on Friday with a throttle problem. That meant he started from 16th on the grid and never really recovered in the race. To top things off his car stopped on track with just two laps remaining.

Nico Hulkenberg - 16th He damaged the floor of the car early on and that meant he was off the pace for most of the race. He was constantly trying to defend position and will have to wait for Monaco for another opportunity to add to his single championship point.

Jarno Trulli - 17th The result was about as good as he could have hoped for. He finished ahead of Glock's Virgin and Lotus appeared to have the measure of its main rivals all weekend. He said there were still a number of problems to be ironed out ahead of the next race in Monaco.

Timo Glock - 18th The update to his car gave saw him finish strongly and trouble Trulli for a large part of the race. He didn't quite have the pace to attempt a pass but the result will be reassuring for his team after its early season dramas.

Lucas di Grassi - 19th A finish was a good result for him, but without the bigger fuel tank enjoyed by Glock, he was a lap down on the battle in front of him and 4 laps down on the race leaders.

Sebastien Buemi - DNF - Hydraulics He came together with de la Rosa at the start, then received a drive-through penalty for a pit-lane infringement (the exact reason is still a mystery), before finally retiring with a hydraulic problem. It will be desperately disappointing for him because the car was capable of more and his team-mate racked up another point.

Karun Chandhok - DNF - Suspension A finish would have been a good result for him but he was forced to retire after Alguersuari wiped his front wing off. The resulting damage to the suspension was too severe to risk carrying on and he was understandably annoyed with the Toro Rosso driver.

Pedro de la Rosa - DNF - Puncture and damage He got off to a good start but an accident with Sebastien Buemi saw him suffer a rear puncture. The flapping tyre carcass caused extensive damage to the floor of the car and forced him to retire.

Bruno Senna - DNF - Accident He was complaining about inherent damage to his chassis before the race, but that was nothing compared to how it ended up after just one lap. A good start saw him gain a few places, but then he was caught out by the ill-handling HRT and buried it in the barriers at turn 4.

Heikki Kovalainen - DNS - Gearbox A software issue with the gearbox meant his Lotus didn't even fire up on the grid. Given Trulli's solid performance, he will be disappointed that he wasn't able to show what he could do.