Red Bull and England have completed dominated their rivals. Red Bull racing team is going strength to strength this season and has not left many things to aspire for the other teams. With 7 races still to go in the season they have all but sealed the Constructor’s Championship and the way their 2 drivers, Vettel & Webber, are performing it looks likely that they will finish 1 and 2 in Driver’s standings as well. Though 7 races are still to go, with Indian grand Prix also making its debut, the title race looks to be sealed in favour of Red Bull and Sebastian Vettel. A proof in the point is the recently concluded Belgian Grand Prix where Red Bull had a 1-2 finish and that too when a lot of questions were raised on their tyres at the start of the race.
In a rare race when Schumacher started last on the starting grid due to tyre blunder in the Qualifying session Nico Roseberg came smoking out of the starting grid and also grabbed the lead briefly but could not hold on it for much longer. Vettel was soon in front and in a topsy turvy race ensured that he finished on top of the podium which he was missing since European Grand Prix in late June. Webber ensured that he finishes 2nd and does not give anything away to their rivals. Hamilton remained true to his form this season and crashed out of the race on Lap 13 where he was tipped to be amongst the favourite to win the race. His Mercedes-McLaren teammate Jenson Button had a fantastic race and along with the great Michael Schumacher was the driver of the race. Button started from 13th position on the starting grid and fought his way through to the podium by finishing 3rd and Schumacher having started from 24th place fought his way up to 5th place which is very creditable for a 42 year old driver celebrating 20 years on the track.
All in all this has been Red Bull season with 7 wins in 12 races and with only Vettel winning all the races he is in comfortably ahead by 92 points from teammate Webber who incidentally also has 7 podium finishes and has ensured that Vettel is not the only one earning points for the team. Webber has been the unsung hero for the Red Bull team and even without winning a single race he is currently at 2nd place on the driver’s tally and looks good to be finishing on podium few more times in the coming races.
The current season has also been good from Force India – Mercedes with its drivers consistently finishing the races and Adrian Sutil in particular has been very impressive. Sutil has finished 11 of the 12 races this season and have managed to score points in 5 races with a top finish of 6th place in German Grand Prix. With the upcoming Indian Grand Prix in October the force India team will be looking for even better results from its drivers. The crowd will be behind Force India drivers in New Delhi and excitement has already started to build up. The ticket sales for the Grand Prix has started and has had an enthusiastic response from the fans in India who will get first opportunity to see their racing superstars racing live in front of them. We are confident that the organizers will leave no stone unturned to make maiden Indian Grand Prix a huge success and it will start a new chapter in sporting culture of India and will encourage youngsters to take up and follow Formula 1 in a big way. It is a very big opportunity for Formula 1 as well because India is a big market and no one can ignore the potential of this market and this Grand Prix will take Formula 1 into the India households where they expect to find a huge business potential and consumer base.
Formula 1 is taking huge strides in India which is evident from the encouraging results from its team and maiden Indian Grand Prix planned for October ’11 but Indian cricket team is falling from the high it went up to after winning the ODI World Cup earlier this year. With an ICC ranking of No.1 in test cricket Indian cricket was flying high and mighty and it was looking as if we will stay on top for a long time to come but were rudely woken up to reality by England. England humiliated India by a 4-0 white wash in test matches. In the process India also lost the No.1 rank and came crashing down to rank No.3 in ICC test ranking. It s not the defeats but the way our team was defeated is disheartening. Our team did not show any stomach to fight it out and stand in front of the rampaging opposition and just kept surrendering Match after match. The only thing which increased was the margin of defeat and our super stars came crashing down. Rahul Dravid and Praveen Sharma were few players who came out of all this bloodshed around them with their heads held high based on their performance.
Indian teams misery has continued from the longest format to the shortest format as well. India lost a one off T20 match as well after getting off to a brilliant start and it once again reminded everyone of their capitulation in test matches. Now we can just hope that the young players can infuse some amount of extra energy, hunger to win and stomach to fight the opposition and salvage some pride. India are the World Champions and even without Sehwag, Gambhir, Yuvraj, Zaheer and Bhajji have to make sure that they play like World Champions with some self belief. The key to the whole thing will be not to surrender the key moments in the match by holding on to strong position and not buckling under the opposition attack.
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