What was the biggest story from the European Grand Prix in Valencia just passed? Fernando Alonso's victory was as unexpected as it was brilliant, and only a curmudgeon will have been left unmoved by his emotional home win, all of which leaves him a clear 20 points clear in the drivers' table.
|Are Sebastian Vettel and Red Bull set to dominate?|
Credit: Morio / CC
So, has Red Bull put a massive stride on the opposition which will be decisive for where honours go this year? Well, I wouldn't put it past them; Adrian Newey and his team are perfectly capable of such a eureka moment. And, something that's under-commented on, Red Bull's record of in-season development is an excellent one. Try to remember one of its upgrades that didn't work and it's genuinely difficult to cite many (or any) examples. Of course, on the flip side it's been such an unpredictable season so far with such a multitude of variables that it may be foolish to base too much on one race; Vettel qualified only seventh in the Spanish round which followed his win in Bahrain earlier this year, and while Nico Rosberg trounced all in China he's barely been seen at the front since. And at least some of Seb's Valencia dominance owed to his closest potential rivals on pace being tucked up behind slower cars. Silverstone next up, which is a very different circuit to Valencia, should give us a clearer sense of how the land really lies.
But without wishing to play the bad fairy at the christening, do you ever suspect that the close and unpreditable 2012 we've been enjoying may be about to come to an end?