Setup skill and raw speed are obviously not mutually exclusive, they tend to go hand in hand. So what I mean is that when we see Hamilton deliver a stonking lap, there's a common misperception that it's just all raw talent, when in actual fact he's most likely got a setup which is faster in theory than others and he is merely able to access it. I believe that he is the sort of driver who will live with whatever setup is best suited to the track and car (07' & 08' cars a good example of this, as is this year's car), whereas Button requires the car to be set up for him. Sometimes the way JB wants it happens to suit the track (Spa for example), but often it doesn't and that's usually when we see the biggest gulf between him and Lewis.
Not always, raw talent sometimes is strong enough doesn´t suit setup skill. Peterson or Jim Clark they were awful with the setup (testing the car). Actually one time over Monza (don´t remember exactly where I read it) the team gave to Ronnie the car with two completely different setup but they did not say to him. He was able to score the same fastest time with both!
Seb has been extremely fast as soon as he drove a F1 by the first time, and he had no experience with F1 set up skills (and the circuit). He scored the youngest FL over a FP, 1:28.091 beating a Ferrari and that talks about raw speed. Imo Lewis is the same thing, he was as fast as Alonso on his first race (in Spain the press said he did copy the Alonso set-up) and he was fast since the beggining. That´s why i think Seb and Lewis are the most talented drivers in terms of sheer speed whatever the conditions. And while much complicated is the circuit, they shine.
I have the feeling Alonso depends much more on the setup than Seb or Lewis, that not means they are not as good choosing the right setup or Alonso is lack of raw talent. Far from this, they have proved during all along his career so far they know how to do it.;)
Edited by Alarcon, 02 November 2012 - 22:35.