Sunday, March 21, 2010

All in a day's work

Double World Champion Fernando Alonso of Ferrari clinched his 22nd Grand Prix victory by leading a Ferrari 1-2 with teammate Felipe Massa in last weekend's Formula One season opener in Bahrain.

This after snatching an almost impossible to catch Sebastian Vettel in his Renault-powered Red Bull RB5 but later on experienced a faulty spark plug way in the second half of the race. The German, taking pole position in the event's Qualifying, lost power and was overtaken by hungry followers Massa and Lewis Hamilton of Mercedes-powered McLaren. Vettel eventually finished 4th.

The implications of Fernando Alonso winning his first ever GP in a new team can be summarized aptly by Vettel weeks before the start of the race. A happy Alonso is not good to hear.

While many blame Renault's faulty engine causing the young German's first place finish, it cannot be ignored that, together with car pace, design, pit crew and driver talent, engine reliability come into play.

Remember 2 years ago when Felipe Massa was on his way to a Grand Prix victory in the European Grand Prix in Valencia when his Ferrari lost power, blew up smoke and gave up-- all happening with less than 3 laps to go? And who could forget the debacle that was the first ever night race of Singapore? 

Such is the bitterness of F1 racing that drivers pray everything should come into play perfectly when the race starts.

Although Red Bull appears to be the team to beat in terms of pace this early, Ferrari has the more reliable car. But do not count out McLaren and Mercedes yet. Their driver pool is one talented bunch in Hamilton and Jenson Button for the Woking-based team and 7-time F1 Champion Michael Schumacher (who finished a dismal 6th behind his younger compatriot) and Nico Rosberg for the all-German team.

The next 2 or 3 races should still go to either Red Bull or Ferrari. Some teams will play catch-up while others will just struggle to finish a race.

Next up: Australia.

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Was Manny Pacquiao's win over Joshua Clottey impressive?

I must say this was one of the most boring fights of Pacquiao since his 2nd fight with Marco Antonio Barrera ending in the same unanimous decision victory in October of 2007. No knock-downs or knock-outs. Absolutely boring.

The Filipino is hungry for a brutal KO and it frustrates one to see Clottey play peek-a-boo amidst the flurry of Pacman's punches.

What's next for Clottey? Nada. Promoters will think he is too much of a boring fighter. That fight would have been his ticket to more bigger fights had he exchanged rounds with Manny.

For Manny, his latest victory will not take him to the House of Representatives this year. Congressman Chiongbian is too much of an erstwhile opponent deeply rooted in Saranggani that Manny will once again feel the receiving end of a unanimous decision victory of an opponent.

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I am now almost 3 months into running, more than a  month since my first 5k and less than a week until my first 12k.

My weekly running mileage for the past several weeks has been steadily increasing to around 20 km at an average running pace of 7:40/km. I hope to improve this week-- pace, stamina and all.

I have the jitters. My biggest fear is a DNF (did not finish) due to an injury and my second biggest fear is finishing beyond a quality time and that is more than 1 hour and 30 min for a 12k. I hope to finish in 1:15 or better.

12k CitiRun here I come. Hope to see you all there!