The weekend was another big one for motorsports fans. Indy Car was doing twin 275 mile races in Texas, Prototypes were in the middle of a 24 hour battle in LeMans, and F1 was attempting to put on a show for racing fans in Canada. I say “attempt” because about 20 laps into the 70 lap race the skies opened up and began dumping gallons of water on the fans, the drivers and the track. The rain got so bad that the race had to be red flagged (stopped) for about an hour and a half as they waited for mother nature to finish her emo-fit. However, before the red flag there was already a bit of action on track, the biggest was when Jenson Button accidentally took out his own teammate Lewis Hamilton as Lewis attempted to make what was either a brave or fool-hearty move on Jenson down the straight. Jenson moved on Lewis and busted his left rear wheel effectively ending his weekend. So that was one car down before the rain even started!
Once the rain let up later on the race resumed and suddenly all the mid-packers were injected with “go fast” juice as Michael Schumacher, Jenson Button, and Felipe Massa all began to put pressure on Sebastien Vettel who was up front (of course) and put pressure on each other as they fought to get to the front. No one was sure how the weather was going to play out once the rain let up so each team were taking gambles on what tires to use. Should they stay with intermediates? Go to full slick? Stay on wet tires in case the rain came back? It was a regular tire shuffle as the teams tried to anticipate what mother nature would do next. Most teams switched to intermediates while some took a gamble on slicks as a dry line started to form on the track. Button and his team were among those who decided to stay on intermediates which paid off in spades for the British driver as he made it from mid pack to the front putting pressure on Sebastien Vettel for the lead. On the last lap Vettel finally succumbed to Button”s onslaught and made a mistake in a braking zone allowing Jenson to pass him half way through the last lap and move on to take the win. Vettel recovered and was able to hold onto second place thus protecting his points lead and his teammate Mark Webber got past Michael Schumacher for the third spot on the Podium.
This is only the second race that Sebastien Vettel didn’t win all season so despite being taken down by Jenson Button the young German is not sweating it too much but it was certainly exciting for fans to finally see someone else have at it for a change!
Will we see another driver step up and take it to Sebastien? We have to wait about 10 days to find out when F1 heads to Valencia Spain for the European Grand Prix on the 23rd. Stay tuned!
For a full Canadian GP post race report check out SPEED.
[Photo: Mark Thompson/Getty Images]