The German Grand Prix proved interesting on a number of fronts. The Bridgestone/Ferrari combination showed again that the Japanese tire giant has taken a substantial step up in performance of late. Even the new "experimental" Michelin tire did not have the necessary pace.
The Renaults showed that they do require the "outlawed" mass damper system they have employed for the past 18 months, as the car was not its normal settled, easy-to-drive self (with Fisi calling the car un-drivable in his second stint), it also seems to have caused blistering to the tires on the car during the race.
McLaren also showed they have found some performance from somewhere. It's not as much as they need, but it's a clear step up, and last but not least Honda have found the level of pace that they showed in the early stages of the season.
So if we ignore the scarlet cars, what do we make of the rest of the bunch?
Well, although Kimi was short fuelled, and then had a stuck wheel during the first pit stop (for the second week running) he fought through and came 3rd. This was a great drive by the Fin, and he showed why so many teams are fighting for his signature at the end of the year.
Pedro de la Rossa showed decent pace as well, however his engine packed up on him early on in the race.
The pitting of the leading McLaren allowed the Ferraris to take the first two spots and have an unhindered race to the flag. However the other teams running on Japanese rubber showed it was the tire of choice, with both the Toyota and Williams cars setting good pace.
Barrichello suffered an engine failure on Lap 18, causing him to retire from the race, leaving only button to make points for the Japanese Honda team.
Button was now running in third behind the quickly disappearing Ferraris. He pitted on Lap 15, showing just how much pace the Ferraris had in the bag. Alonso was losing ground in fifth to teammate Fisichella when both he and Massa pitted on Lap 19.
Lap 30 brought a big crash from Jacques Villeneuve, who looked to have something in his suspension break as he was mid corner. The car seemed to lose its front end and come to a halt in the barriers leading onto the home straightaway. Both him and teammate Nick Heidfeld had separate coming-togethers on lap one with other cars. This could have been the root cause of the failure. Nick Heidfeld had already retired after the lap one incident, meaning both of the German BMW cars were out of their home GP.