A disaster of a year for McLaren with much turbulence and upset for the team. They didn’t deliver even one win which must have hurt Ron quite badly. But on the other hand it was a disaster of his own making. He was unable to hang on to Adrian Newey but because he hired the world champion driver a year in advance he caused massive instability in his own team where three drivers into two didn’t fit. Whatever the truth about when Kimi’s contract was signed to Ferrari you have to ask why Montoya quit. He looked like a shoe in for the second seat. But maybe it was the way that Ron was chasing after Kimi and trying to get him to change his mind which upset Juan-Pablo so.
What more can be said about Alonso which hasn’t been said before? He’s fast, mentally strong, and can do a mean card trick. I personally think Alonso will fit in very well at McLaren. Ron’s looking for a son after Mika (Kimi was never it – too outlandish) and Alonso is looking for a father figure he can trust (Flav was too outlandish for Alonso). A bond will be formed between them. The only thing that can hold him back is the car – he’s ready to win again.
Hamilton has a hard balancing act coming up. He’s got a massive learning curve ahead of him. And it’s going to be a hard one to scale. He needs to stop himself from being too cocky at first because people will be expecting too much from him. People will forgive him a few mistakes in his rookie year. And nobody will expect him to be next to Alonso (except Lewis himself) this year which will give him some space to learn. But already I feel like some people on the grid resent Hamilton. Every driver would have loved to have learnt on the best equipment and have said that Ron is taking too big of a risk. And I’m sure they’d all love to be proved right.
Lots of changes for the design department. And while there have been lots of rumours that Ron wrote off last year to start work on this car early we have to face that some of that work will have been redundant due to late rule changes and that this is the first car designed by a new and untested team. Last years car was designed by Newey.
The reliability and terminal speed of the car will be the main factors. If the McLaren isn’t fast out of the box come Melbourn then Alonso will be struggling all year. He’s used to setting out his stall with Renault not chasing at the end of the season.
Hamilton wins a race before Alonso does.
Alonso teaches Kimi what driving despite a poor car looks like, but it’s just not enough to win the championship.