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F1 2008, Round 7 - Canada - The Montreal circuit provides action in and out of the pit lane

Published by Christine

This article was originally written for BellaOnline, but is republished here for posterity.

This weekend looked as though it was going to go all Hamilton’s way. He had the momentum from his dream win in Monaco; he had the knowledge that Canada was his debut win in 2007. He even managed to stick his McLaren on pole position, over half a second faster than anyone else.

Problems with the track meant a lot of drivers, the Ferrari’s included, struggling with grip and unable to get the most out of their cars. The track had been repaired ahead of the weekend, but the new tarmac was breaking up and causing problems. It was so bad that there were emergency repairs overnight before the race, in the hopes it would hold up to the strain for 70 laps.

The first few corners were very clean, with no accidents, and Hamilton pulled away a nice lead. After a few laps, Sutil pulled his Force India off track and retired from the race. The safety car came out, as Sutil’s car was in a dangerous position. When the pit lane opened to allow drivers to pit, a whole host of teams called their guys in. Both Ferrari’s stacked up behind each other, and Räikkönen emerged ahead of Hamilton. He reached the end of the pit lane next to Kubica, and they both stopped at the red light. Hamilton, coming up behind them, didn’t stop in time, swerved to the left, but crashed into the back of the Ferrari. They were both out of the race. Rosberg also didn’t stop at the lights and knocked into Hamilton, which meant he had to circle the track once, then pit again for a new nose. He managed to continue, but his strong showing was ruined.

The three involved in the pit lane collision were investigated by the stewards, and they decided that both Rosberg and Hamilton should have a ten-place grid penalty for the next race, France.

Back to the race, though, the retirement of the Ferrari and McLaren gifted the win to BMW. It was just a matter of whether it would be Heidfeld or Kubica. Heidfeld was one stopping, and when he was heavy with fuel, Kubica managed to get past him. Kubica flew off into the distance, and built up such a lead that he could pit and still come out in front of Heidfeld. He passed the chequered flag in front, and took his maiden win in Canada. This puts him in the lead of the driver’s championship as well.

Also on the podium were Heidfeld and Coulthard, who had a quiet but flawless race to finish in third. BMW got their first win and their first ever 1-2, giving them something to really celebrate.