Sebastian Vettel put in a peerless performance today to win the British Grand Prix, his second victory of the season and the third of his brief career. He turns 22 next week.
Red Bull Racing have made a big improvement to their car, but there is no doubt that the circuit and the conditions played to their strengths and Brawn’s weaknesses. The Brawn drivers were struggling, relatively speaking, Button had a tougher time than Barrichello, but it was interesting that none of the other cars was fast enough to beat the Brawn to the podium.
The question then is, will Red Bull be ahead in the second half of the season and make a championship of it? They were faster in Istanbul, but Vettel made a mistake on the opening lap.
Webber was unlucky this weekend. He looked to have the measure of Vettel in the run up to qualifying, there was nothing in it. Red Bull gave Webber the lighter fuel load for qualifying which meant he was supposed to get the pole, but they gave Vettel the better race strategy. They were meticulously fair with the drivers, who were told that they could race each other. People are suggesting that they should now favour Vettel and give him the best of everything as he has closed the gap on Button to 23 points, which is the kind of gap Kimi Raikkonen was able to close up on Lewis Hamilton in 2007.
So will Webber be the number two from now on? Given that the gap between them is only 4.5 points that would be harsh. It certainly looks like the Red Bull drivers will close the gap, whether they can make a championship of it we will know after the next two races.
Ferrari and Williams both had good days. Ferrari took Felipe Massa from 11th on the grid to fourth, while Williams converted a good qualifying performance by both cars into a solid four points for Nico Rosberg in fifth place. Their respective team mates both had days which started promisingly but ended in disappointment, Raikkonen running fifth in the early stages but finishing eighth and Nakajima a very positive fourth in the opening stint, but his early stop pit strategy dropped him down to 11th.