The Caterham F1 Team's Italian Grand Prix weekend was reasonably successful.
The Caterham F1 Team's Italian Grand Prix weekend was reasonably successful. Heikki Kovalainen and Vitaly Petrov qualified eighteenth and nineteenth, after all, so the team was nearly fast enough to participate in the second part of qualifying. However, both moved forward one position as Williams' Pastor Maldonado received a ten-place penalty for jumping the start - and later causing an incident - at last weekend's Belgian Grand Prix.Heikki Kovalainen started the Italian Grand Prix with medium compound tyres. He then switched to the harder compound on lap seventeen, and to a second set of mediums on lap thirty-nine. Vitaly Petrov followed a similar strategy, pitting his car on laps nineteen and forty. So, after a reasonably quiet afternoon, Caterham's racers finished fourteenth and fifteenth respectively. That is a pleasing result for the team – but only tells part of the story. Caterham F1 was helped by a high attrition rate. As such McLaren's Jenson Button retired, from second, on lap thirty-two with a fuel supply problem - and Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel experienced alternator problems on lap forty-seven. That forced him off the track and onto the grass. Furthermore his team mate, Mark Webber, retired on lap fifty-one after a spin flat-spotted his tyres. At least he missed the barrier. Force India's Nico Hulkenberb and Toro Rosso's Jean-Eric Vergne also had issues, retiring on laps fifty and eight respectively. That said, Caterham earned its pleasing results. Why? Because capitalising on the mistakes and misfortune of opponents is an important part of motor sport. The Caterham F1 Team will next be in action in Singapore from September 21st to 23rd. Watch this space.