15 September 2010

2011 grid - by rumour

With numbers based on current championship standings:

RED BULL: 1. Webber, 2. Vettel.
McLAREN: 3. Hamilton, 4. Button
FERRARI: 5. Alonso, 6. Massa
MERCEDES: 7. Schumacher, 8. Rosberg (if we believe Schumi's superstition about odd numbers)
RENAULT: 9. Kubica, 10. Raikkonen (how good would that be, alternatively Petrov)
FORCE INDIA: 11. Sutil, 12. Liuzzi (Liuzzi surely under threat, but has apparently signed)
WILLIAMS: 14. Barrichello, 15. Hulkenberg (Rubens began his career in car #14)
SAUBER: 16. Heidfeld, 17. Kobayashi
TORO ROSSO: 18. Buemi, 19. Alguersuari (surely time for both to prove themselves or give up)
LOTUS: 20. Kovaleinen, 21. Trulli (although Petrov may be placed here by Renault)
VIRGIN: 22. Glock, 23. D'Ambrosio (subject to Glock not getting better drive and latter finding sponsorship)
HISPANIA: 24. De La Rosa, 25. Senna (subject to sufficient Spanish sponsorship, presumably)

Hard done by drivers:
1. Chandhok - did all that could be expected of him, but money talks at the back of the grid
2. Maldonado - won GP2 title, which is usually enough to secure a seat. He even has Nicolas Todt for an agent, so expect him to appear if someone loses their seat for sponsorship reasons.

Lucky drivers:
1. Massa - has underperformed this year, returning to his pre-2008 form. There are probably 6 or 7 drivers in slower cars who'd love his Ferrari seat.
2. Schumacher - won't make any pundit's "top 10 drivers of the year" list, perhaps he'll make a "shock" retirement announcement at the end of the season.
3. Liuzzi - Force India would do well to pick up Chandhok (Indian after all) or Maldonado in his place, but probably won't.
4=. Both Toro Rosso drivers - neither has shown any exceptional talent, so I would expect Red Bull to try and place another of its drivers (Chandhok?) in their place, but there's no sign of that happening.
6. Trulli - outclassed by Kovaleinen all year long and hasn't the "rookie" excuse that other overshadowed drivers (Hulkenberg, Petrov) could more validly use.
7. De La Rosa - if it is true that Hispania are so desperate for experience/someone Spanish/sponsorship that they'd take him on

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