• May 30, 2010
2010 Turkish Grand Prix – Click above for high-res image gallery

That a driver's chief rival is his teammate is one of the most pervasive and enduring truisms in grand prix racing. And lest we forget, constant reminders of this accelerate into view throughout the season. This one especially.

Whether the rivalry is between McLaren's "dream team" of World Champions; the returning champion and his young wingman at Mercedes; the ascendant frontrunners at Red Bull; or the hot-blooded duo at Ferrari, we're certainly not lacking for examples, without even dipping into the deep well of motor racing history. This weekend's Turkish Grand Prix was certainly no exception. Follow the jump to see what we mean.

Starting as we always do on Saturday, qualifying in Istanbul held few surprises in the context of how the season has unfolded so far. For the third consecutive race, Red Bull's Mark Webber landed the pole. His teammate Sebastian Vettel wasn't far behind in third, sandwiching Lewis Hamilton in second. Jenson Button completed the Red Bull-McLaren staggered starting order in fourth position, followed by Mercedes GP's Michael Schumacher and Nico Rosberg in fifth and sixth respectively. Robert Kubica and Vitaly Petrov proved Renault is still a force still to be reckoned with by qualifying seventh and ninth, with Ferrari's Felipe Massa in eighth. And for the second time in as many races, Fernando Alonso crashed during qualifying,relegating him to twelfth on the grid.

Few surprises unfolded after the Turkish Delight got underway, either. In the opening laps, Schumacher moved on Button, only for Button to regain position. Massa and Kubica made brief contact, but that was about the extent of the action in the contest's early laps. Hamilton, however, wasn't letting up on Webber, nor was Button on Vettel, the McLarens keeping constant pressure on the Red Bulls at the front of the pack.

Ten laps in, the order remained largely the same, with only a few shake-ups at the back of the field. The only notable surprise was Alonso's inability to get around the mid-fielders and advance up the order, a problem that would plague him the rest of the race.

The first round of pit stops on the track known for being particularly hard on tires came on lap 11. Once the majority of the field – most crucially the race leaders – had re-emerged from pit lane, the order remained largely the same, only with Vettel and Hamilton trading places. Webber remained in the lead, followed by his teammate, then Hamilton (3), Button (4), Schumacher (5), Rosberg (6), Kubica (7), Massa (8), Petrov (9) and Alonso (10).

Turkish GP 2010

The top four lapped in close formation, while Schumacher led the rest of the field from P5, behind Button by some 16 seconds and behind Webber by over 30.

Around lap 35, both Lotus cars were sidelined, with Jarno Trulli ditching his broken car at the edge of the track and Kovalainen retiring to the garage. By race's end, they'd be joined by the HRT-Cosworths of Karun Chandhok and Bruno Senna, and one more crucial retirement that would significantly change the outcome of the race.

By lap 40, Sebastian Vettel was extremely close on Webber's tail. It was only a matter of time before he'd make his move, but the timing had to be just perfect. Evidently, Vettel's was not. As he made his move on Webber, Vettel apparently miscalculated his wingman's position. During the overtaking maneuver, Vettel closed in and made contact with Webber, sending both cars spinning off the track and out of the lead. Webber regained control and rejoined the race in third, but Vettel was finished. The young German climbed out of the cockpit, signaled that his team-mate was crazy and ended the day, save for some very inquisitive journalists who hounded him all the way to his trailer.

And just like that, a race that looked all but certain to end with another Red Bull 1-2 finish was transformed as the trailing McLarens catapulted into the lead. Webber pitted to replace his damaged tires and front wing, but while he managed to stay ahead of the lagging Schumacher, he would prove unable to catch up to Lewis and Jenson.

The mantle of the intra-team rivalry was picked up instead by the champion pair, who fought a close battle over the remaining laps. At the end of lap 48, Jenson squeezed around Lewis, only for Hamilton to regain the lead past the start/finish line.

Meanwhile, Alonso finally managed to get by rookie Vitaly Petrov's Renault, which had kept the two-time World Champion at bay for much of the race. Brief contact ensued during the passing maneuver, forcing Petrov into the pits with precious few laps to go. Alonso would finish eighth and safely inside the points; Petrov, fifteenth, well outside.

Ahead of them, Lewis Hamilton held on to the lead in front of his charging teammate and chief rival, Jenson Button, for a McLaren 1-2 that would, if not for one crucial, hot-headed mistake, have gone to Red Bull. Webber instead finished third, visibly disappointed but magnanimous in defeat. Schumacher tied his best result of the season so far with a solid fourth place finish, his teammate right behind in fifth. Following up on his podium in Monaco, Robert Kubica brought in his Renault for a respectable sixth place finish ahead of the Ferrari pair of Massa and Alonso (seventh and eighth, respectively), Force India's Sutil (ninth), and Sauber's Kobayashi (tenth). Pedro de la Rosa lead the race finishers outside the points: STR's Jaime Alguersuari, Force India's Tonio Liuzzi, Williams' Rubens Barrichello, Renault's Vitaly Petrov, STR's Sebastian Buemi, Williams' Nico Hulkenberg, and Virgin's Timo Glock and Lucas di Grassi.

The results leave Mark Webber still in the lead for the title with 93 points, followed by Button with 88, Hamilton close behind with 84, Alonso with 79, and Vettel with 78. Kubica and Massa trail with 67 apiece, Rosberg with 66, and Schumacher with 34. The combined scores leave McLaren with a narrow lead at 172 points to Red Bull's 171, ahead of Ferrari's 146 and Mercedes 100 even. Join us again in two weeks' time for the Canadian Grand Prix from Le Circuit Gilles-Villeneuve in Montreal.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 4 Years Ago
      I turned the damned thing off after 30 minutes.

      The British commentators are 2,241% better than the guys at "speed", but when hamilton wins, they get all ass-kissy and well; I can't take all the genuflecting.
        • 4 Years Ago
        "The British commentators are 2,241% better than the guys at "speed"."

        ...And yet, unavailable in The States. I'd love to listen to Coulthard, even if it meant I had to listen to Brundle. You take what you can get. Unfortunately, we have to listen to Bob Varsha to get great pit commentary from Will Buxton. I think David Hobbes is a decent commentator, but respect him as a former driver more than I do as a good presenter.

        As to Steve Matchett, well, he's a former mechanic. The love for the sport shows in his commentary. It's been GREAT to hear him this season, talking about pit crews, their actions. You know, the subtle little differences between teams.

        Lotus had a 20 second tire change a couple races ago. It was the right rear tire. Matchett's comments were smooth; even in temper, tone, and speed.
        "When you get a stuck nut like that, it can seem like an eternity in the pit. Easy, Son. Back and forth. Left and right. Don't get frustrated."

        It was sage-like wisdom, man. Don't knock Speed. They're not all bad.
        • 4 Years Ago
        The BBC all kissy kissy when it comes to Hamilton. I really don't know what you have been listening to. But when I listen to the BBC they could not be more anti Hamilton. The commentators confine their comments to factual inacurracies, sometimes in my opinion outright lies, when not boring us with useless information much of which causes me to feverishly hunt around for the remote, to press that button marked mute, give it a few moments, before returning volume. Finger of course poised over the aforementioned mute, should the need arise, and of course it being the BBC it will!
      • 4 Years Ago
      Just like Button, Webber is great when he's out in front and not under pressure. But the second anyone shows they are challenging him he crumbles and ends up doing stupid things, like driving into his teammate.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Agreed, Button is 60% pure luck, 40% driving - his only wins last year came in a car that had to be legalized four or five races into the season and when noone on the grid had a competitve car. His crew was left to copying setup of Barichello's car as Button set up input was useless. This year's wins were pure luck, whether could have gone either way.

        As for the collision, Vettel was ahead of Weber and the crash, that is Vettel's car steering right, was caused by Weber's car rear tires running into rear wheels of Vettel's car.

        Not only Weber squeezed Vettel way too much, he actually missed the braking point - he had more momentum than Vettel that's why he avoided more substantial damages.

        Vettel was braking while Weber wasn't at which point he was faster where he shouldn't have been and having squeezed Vettel before, his rear wheels were inside Vettel's track. Vettel didn't turn, his car swerved right when Weber's tires touched rear tires of Vettel's car.

        It's purely Weber's fault. If you don't let other driver space and put your wheels inside his wheels' track and then you don't brake where you are supposed to do, you end up crashing.
        • 4 Years Ago
        What race were you watching? Vettel ran into Webber and Webber was doing quite a good job of fending off Lewis Hamilton when he was pressuring him for the lead early in the race. I didn't see and crumbling.
        • 4 Years Ago
        must, resist, the, sexist, comments :)
        • 4 Years Ago
        Vettel might've been right in passing webber had the team allowed them to go at it. THey were still fighting both the McLaren's and the possibility of rain on the track. I highly doubt any sane team would risk a 1-2 with the dual threat of rain and two world champs breathing down their necks. Vettel just thought he knew best and attacked but webber was going to try and force him back in line by keeping him in second for now. The egos clashed and it turns out, experience won over aggresion.

        Vettel was at fault because he shouldn;t have passed him with such a move. It was ill-thought out and was at the completely wrong time. But had vettel waited for a much much better opportunity, it would;ve been webber at fault if they crashed. If webber had a bit of an off or missed his braking zone and when vettel went for the safe overtake webber still blocked it would've been a different story.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I believe it was Vettel who drove into Webber no?
      • 4 Years Ago
      Sad thing is apparently Red Bull is taking Vettel's side on this, and evidence is growing that behind the scenes they were trying to orchestrate a Vettel win by telling Webber to turn down his fuel mix while telling Vettel to turn his up - team orders for all intents and purposes. All this because they're afraid to lose Vettel to another team if he's unhappy. So much for Red Bull being one of the few teams to not pick no.1 and no.2 drivers...
        • 4 Years Ago
        Vettel knowingly took the inside line knowing that it'd be on dirty side of the track, he probably thought that he would pressure Webber into moving over for him. Why should Webber move over when he is the leader, he is in control, and so forth. Besides there was room to complete the pass, so I'm not certain what Christian Horner is on about. Also, what is really pathetic was how cuddly RB personnel were with Vettel after the crash. For all the PR nonsense, the initial reaction always shows the truth, and it's dead obvious that Vetter is preferred over Webber. They are throwing every excuse possible showing their bias, whether it was Webber's fuel-save mode, or Mclarens somehow being a factor. I understand that Vettel is Germany's answer to Hamilton, but come on, such blatant mistreatment of Webber is unforgivable.
        • 4 Years Ago
        "All this because they're afraid to lose Vettel to another team if he's unhappy."
      • 4 Years Ago
      It's worth wondering what this means for Red Bull's driver lineup in 2011. Even after Vettel's driving today, if they had to choose between drivers, they would retain Vettel. That's sad.....

      On the worst case scenario, it is possible (although probably unlikely) that neither driver returns to Red Bull next year. That opens up the possibility of two competitive racing seats being open. If that were to happen, it would open the door for Kimi Raikkonen to return to F1. After all, Red Bull is one of his personal sponsors. Both he and Red Bull deny that anything is in place for next year. Again, I don't think this will happen, but it is not impossible. The bigger issue is if Webber and Vettel can co-exist at Red Bull next year. I have doubts.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Vettel is a prima-donna imho & deserved what he got. Webber has maturity, diplomacy & calmness under pressure & did bloody well to get back into his groove for 3rd place.

        Both Hamilton & the BBC race callers called it Vettels mistake.

        Pity Vettel is the favoured son. Webber should go shopping for another ride next year.

        Cheers M.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Never forgot; the most significant part of the car is the nut behind the wheel. This statement holds true today.
      • 4 Years Ago

      extract of a quote from official f1 site

      Christian Horner, Red Bull team principal
      "Sebastian got a run on the inside of Mark, but then came across too early"
      • 4 Years Ago
      I see the responsibility as 70% Vettel / 30% Weber. Why? Vettel had a legitimate launch to pass, his car was performing better on 2 previous laps, and Weber had plenty of room to the right to allow the pass. Weber held to tight of line when he could have move 1/2 foot right to allow Vettel by. This would have been the right thing to do for the team. I wish they would abolish the 2 man/car teams to be honest specifically for this reason. In that case it would have been 100% Vettel's fault.

      Overall, this was a tremendous FAIL for RedBull. I would fire one to make the point, its about the team. Weber is a prick to his team, so I would send him packing. They are only in lead because the cars are simply out performing in the power/downforce department...

      Too bad the Merc's seems 4 seconds low on power...
        • 4 Years Ago
        Only basing that off of the commentators every race. I could be completely wrong.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @ The Sensor,
        put the pipe down, man.
        Webber is the championship leader. Red Bull was the Constructor's Championship leader until Vettel's overly aggressive maneuver. Period. I bet you didn't even notice that Vettel's left rear got into the grass and it's most likely the reason why Vettel thinks Webber moved over, which he didn't. Like it or not, F1 is a team sport despite it's appearance to be otherwise, and winning the Constructor's Championship is priority one for every F1 team. Always has been. Always will be. Vettel effed up big time. Yes, he was running faster than Webber. Webber had every right to hold his line. Vettel should have waited to pass Webber on the front stretch going into turn 1. But now the world knows that Vettel is immature as well as talented. He really deserves to sit at home during the Canadian GP and have the reserve driver run in his place. It's unlikely that will happen, so I expect a heavy fine levied against him.
        • 4 Years Ago
        How is Webber (that's his proper last name) a prick to the team?
        • 4 Years Ago
        What commentators were you watching? Because I don't think I've ever really seen ANYONE portray Webber as "prick."
      • 4 Years Ago
      Ferrari's 800th race was a disappointment. Come on, both Massa and Alonso underperformed in this race. Alonso apparently had a lot of issues with his car though, but I wasn't satisfied at all about how SF raced today.

      On the other hand, Vettel crashing into Mark was a + for me. Although I'm not a fan of Lewis Hamilton, I want Red Bull's momentum to fade if there's any hope for Ferrari to make a comeback (you guessed it, I'm a Ferrari fan lol)
        • 4 Years Ago
        I agree with you there, Kimi could always pull out something from nothing when it was really needed. Whether it be the cars, or drivers (and both drivers are talented, but I haven't seen much from them recently though), Ferrari needs to become more aggressive in F1.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Sorry for the double post. I refreshed the page a couple times, but didn't see my initial comment.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Both posts very well said anyway :)
      • 4 Years Ago
      What interests me, is the Jensen Button overtake on Lewis Hamilton. Why was Lewis asked to turn down his engine? Was Button asked to do the same? If so why didn't he? If he was not asked to turn down the engine, why was that? For me there were two very interesting incidents that ocurred in that turkish grand prix, but only the Webber Vettel one makes the headlines.

      As for Webber Vettel, when I first saw it, I thought Webber was at fault. Maybe he should have let Vettle past then at the first available and appropiate opportunity take him, as Lewis did to Jenson, expertly.
      • 4 Years Ago
      if vettel wouldve held his line this wouldnt be a problem. its not the leader's obligation to allow space to pass. ask schumacher. webber has always been a tough pass so to make the assumption that he'd let vettel by is daft.

      vettel is the favorite son, thats clear. the excuse that vettel wouldve been passed by the mclarens is b.s. its not webbers responsibility for vettel to hold his own position.(it wasnt really in that much threat, at least not more than the past 3 laps) had webber turned into him for the next corner when vettel had a nose on him, THEN it would be webbers fault. however, on the straight though it was vettel who flicked right causing the contact. drive straight or realize you cant fit in that hole. webber didnt make it easy, no F1 driver should willfully give up the lead. team orders or not, you race to win. vettle tried also and theres nothing wrong with that, it just wasnt the right situation. i guess he knows that now.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I can't agree with longbowmkii more:

        "In law, the burden of proof lies on those who which to change it. Vettel. You wanted to change who led the race. You are to blame."
        I put that up on Twitter. I'm not even a Red Bull fan, and that p@$!es me off.

        Vettel's a Prima Dona. He's a loudmouth. He can't pack fight like Alonso, Button, or Kubica can. He's a big baby. Watch the qualifying interview again. He was FUMING. He was seriously cranked that he wasn't starting from pole.

        Webber has taken better care of his car. Webber has driven better when it counts.
        AND, if Mclaren are fighting for position, then fight them off and keep them off your tail.
        Schumacher showed button how to do that, for some 20 laps. It was phenomenal.

        You don't have to hit your teammate, in front of you, no less, because people are pressuring you for YOUR position.
        • 4 Years Ago
        "if vettel wouldve held his line this wouldnt be a problem. its not the leader's obligation to allow space to pass."


        I put basically the same thing on Twitter. "In law, the burden of proof lies on those who which to change it. Vettel. You wanted to change who led the race. You are to blame."

        It didn't matter that Sebastian was fighting off Hamilton. It really didn't. Watch qualifying again. Vettel was LIVID. He wasn't faster than Webber, and he was pissy about it.

        TOO BAD. If you are the faster driver, if you are the better driver; you'd have qualified first and led the race from lap 1.

        F'ing suck it up. Deal with it. Learn from it. Vettel isn't a good pack driver ( like Alonso ).

        He doesn't do well NOT being in the spotlight. He doesn't take good care of his car. IMO, this is another reminder of that.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I would have to put most of the blame on Vettel. Actually, this isn't the first time that these two have come together. In his final year driving for Scuderia Torro Rosso, Vettel crashed into Webber robbing them both of a great finish. Despite having the best car on the grid, Team Red Bull cannot maximize points. Things like this will come back to haunt them sometime in September.
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