PHUKET: THE Canadian GP was a magnificent race for Hamilton. Team strategy was absolutely right, and the driving was superb. The decider was tyre strategy. Vettel and Alonso ran a one-stop strategy for Red Bull and Ferrari respectively, while most drivers went for a two stopper.
The strategic question was whether the time and track position gained by saving a pit stop would outweigh inevitable late-race problems with tyre degradation. Now we all know the answer; it does, but only if you have a very special car.
Hamilton knew he could not one-stop, and used Vettel and Alonso’s one-stop strategy to ensure a win. Vettel used his first set of tyres hungrily going for speed in qualifying to gain pole, and in the early laps of the race to protect his position.
So he had to pit early and cede the lead to Hamilton. That left Alonso to deal with. Alonso planned to one-stop, and therefore needed to protect his second place and wait for McLaren to pit in order to take the lead.
So Hamilton was able to stretch his lead while Alonso held up the cars behind him. When Hamilton pitted for a second time, he was able to return to track with fresh boots and easily overtake Vettel and Alonso with DRS assistance and sheer straight line speed.
So the race was about Hamilton, Vettel and Alonso? Well not quite.
Vettel slid down the order with failed tyres and was forced to convert to a hopeless last minute two-stopper. That left him in fourth. Alonso stayed on his exhausted tyres and came in fifth and this opened a window for two other one-stoppers.
Grosjean’s Lotus and Sergio Perez’s Sauber, showed what magnificent combinations of man and machine they are, managing to one-stop and come second and third respectively with tyres still looking remarkably fresh.
Rosberg had a reasonable run for Mercedes but Schumacher retired again and I have an ominous sense of déjà vu, remembering Stirling Moss and all those retirements in his final 1961 season.
Lotus continued to do everything but win. Grosjean was second; Räikkönen was adequate coming from twelfth on the grid to eighth, and now Lotus has to be looking for pole in Valencia.
Button’s lacklustre performance for McLaren is strange. Hamilton is supposed to be the driver who is hard on tyres, but it was Button (last year’s winner) who suffered massive tyre degradation, who was lapped by Hamilton and came in a dire sixteenth. He described himself as “confused and very lost”.
Ferrari still does not have a winning car, and Massa came in tenth after a spin.
The other teams were quite unremarkable. But the Drivers’ Championship is now wide open, Hamilton, Alonso and Vettel lead, but Vettel is dropping inexorably. There are twenty-two drivers in the chase and Grosjean is firmly in the big league.
Two weeks ago I said that the Montreal circuit was named after the only Canadian to win the Drivers’ Championship, Gilles Villeneuve. The circuit is named after him, and Enzo Ferrari’s Piccolo Canadese is perhaps the greatest driver ever.
But as a reader has pointed out quite correctly, Gilles never won the Drivers’ Championship. He came second in 1979 with very strong late-season showings. He was favorite to win the 1980 Championship but the 1980 and 1981 Ferraris were a disaster and of course Gilles was killed in qualifying in 1982.
His son, Jacques won the 1997 Championship in a Williams. The threat of a Montreal student demonstration was successfully squashed by authorities and my television unhappily failed to show the nude marches.
Ironically, Jacques received death threats from the Montreal demonstrators.
So it’s on to a European GP this weekend with almost no overtaking opportunities. I know of only four F1 overtakings on the Valencia circuit since the first GP in 2008. Like Monaco, the race is about qualifying and strategy.
All F1 races are shown at the Greenman, Chalong. Click herefor more information.
— The DigbyKeep in contact with The Thaiger by following our Facebook page.
Phuket reports 12 new coronavirus cases, all from Patong
The southern island province of Phuket confirmed 12 new cases of the Covid-19 coronavirus today (Thursday), bringing the total on the island to 87. All appear to have originated in the island’s Patong area, most from the Bangla Road red light district.
The town of Patong was placed on unofficial curfew yesterday as its governor issued a public decree urging residents to stay in their home at all costs, and promising delivery of necessities to those in need to keep them from venturing out.
The details of the new cases are…
Case 76: A 28 year old Thai woman, a restaurant owner in Patong. she has a history of contact with foreigners and visiting Bangla Road. She fell sick on March 20, 1 contact is considered at risk and is being sought by authorities.
Case 77: A Swedish woman, aged 52, a tourist who came to Thailand with her husband on March 13. She has history of visiting Bangla road, although she stayed a hotel in Karon. She became sick on March 21, 2 contacts are at high risk.
Case 78: A 26 year old Thai woman, a waitress in Patong who had close contact with foreigners and visited Bangla Road. She got sick on March 21, 2 contacts are at high risk.
Case 79: A 37 Russian woman, a tourist in Patong for more than a month. She has an alleged history of partying in Bangla Road and had contact with case 49, a Ukranian man. She became sick on March 20 and 1 other person is at high risk.
Case 80: A 30 year old woman from Kazakhstan, also a tourist in Patong for more than a month, who also had contact with case 49. 1 person is considered at high risk.
Case 81: A 48 year old Thai woman, masseuse in Patong at the same massage shop as cases 32 and 62. She fell sick on March 22 and 6 people are believed to be at high risk
Case 82: A 39 year old Thai man, a worker in a phone shop in a Patong mall. He has a history of close contact with foreigners and visited Bangla Road. He got sick on March 22, 7 people are at high risk.
Case 83: A 37 year old Thai woman, worked in the same Italian restaurant, as cases 59 and 60. High risk contacts total 15
Case 84: A 36 year old Thai man, a chef in Italian restaurant, who became sick on March 30. 12 people are at high risk.
Case 85: A 51 year old Thai woman, a waitress in same restaurant. She fell sick March 25, 13 people are thought to be at high risk.
Case 86: A 30 year old Thai man, a chef in same Italian restaurant, who got sick on Tuesday. Contacts at high risk number 13 people.
Case 87: A 32 year old Thai woman, a tour guide who had contact with a group of friends in Bangla Road. She got sick on sick on March 24, 5 people are at high risk.
SOURCE: Ministry of Public HealthKeep in contact with The Thaiger by following our Facebook page.
Bangkok Airways cancels all domestic flights from April 7
Bangkok Airways has announced today that they will cancel all it domestic flights from April 7 – 30. The company’s vice president, Tresarum Sitakalin says the flights that are being cancelled are…
- Bangkok – Chiang Mai
- Bangkok – Phuket
- Bangkok – Trat
- Bangkok – Sukhothai
- Bangkok – Samui
- Samui – Phuket
“The company had previously decreased flight frequencies on these routes and also using some of their smaller ATR aircraft instead of their Airbus 320 aircraft.”
“From April 7 onwards until April 30, we will cancel all flights.”
Requesting for a refund can be done at www.bangkokair.com/refund or contact their ticketing offices at +662 270 6699 or Bangkok Airways Call Centre on 1771 . For passengers who purchased their tickets through travel agencies, please contact their travel agency directly.
SOURCE: The Nation
Keep in contact with The Thaiger by following our Facebook page.
Urgent repatriation notice for Swiss and German citizens as immigration rules tighten
An urgent repatriation notice has been issued for Swiss and citizens in Thailand. According to Richard Barrow’s Twitter feed, flights are being urgently chartered to evacuate citizens of both nations: A notice posted on the Embassy of Switzerlad’s website reads…
For Swiss travellers in Thailand: Swiss charter flights from Thailand to Switzerland/update…
Bangkok – Zurich
– Good news: seats are still available for a 2nd charter on Sunday April 5 (at 13:05). To register, please send the requested information below for all concerned passengers to: email@example.com -> Deadline: Thursday April 2, 20:00
Phuket – Zurich
– The charter flight is now confirmed for Thursday, April 2, at 23:35. People who have registered will receive a confirmation soon.
– Good news: a few seats are still available. To register, please send the requested information below for all concerned passengers to firstname.lastname@example.org ->
Requested information to be sent…
1. Point of departure: Bangkok or Phuket
2. Family name, first name(s)
3. Date of birth
4. Passport number/Residence permit in Switzerland
5. Validity date of the passport or residence permit in Switzerland
6. Phone number where you can be reached at any time
• Please note that no health certificate is required to board on these flights. However, people with Covid-19 related symptoms are not allowed to travel. More information on these flights is available on our website (www.eda.admin.ch/bangkok)
A similar notise was posted for German nationals…
Due to the Covid-19 coronavirus crisis, travel restrictions and requirements in Thailand are sometimes difficult to navigate. One netizen told The Thaiger this morning that Immigration officials in Hua Hin were demanding the following for an extension of stay…
- Application form (TM.7)
- Fee 1,900 baht
- 2 photographs (passport photo)
- Copy of applicant’s passport (Data page, Visa page, Stamp page, TM6 card)
- Letter of confirmation and request for a temporary stay from the embassy and consulate in Thailand
- Proof of address: In case stay at Hotel – Letter of confirmation of stay from hotel – Hotel booking – Photograph of foreigner at hotel 2-3 pictures. In case rent a house/condominium – Rental agreement – Copy of Lessor’s ID card and copy of Lessor’s house book – Copy of house book from where you rent – Photograph of foreigner at house/condominium 2-3 pictures
- In case of foreigner own the property – Copy of a house book – Copy of Title deed – Photograph of foreigner at the property 2-3 pictures
- Map from house to immigration
- Note: Foreigner must prepare all documents for 2 copies
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