When you make a mistake or get caught up by someone else’s mistake, skill doesn’t really play a deciding factor in getting you through the field. Rather, it’s about the pace of your car relative to the competition and how much luck falls your way. So after complaining about luck in Malaysia, it all fell Lewis Hamilton’s way.
No, he didn’t win the race. That honour went to Nico Rosberg who dominated the entire weekend. Hamilton finished in 3rd which was the best he could have expected after an appalling start.
The weekend started with literal and figurative dark clouds hanging over Suzuka. The weekend started with rain as the teams returned to the site of Jules Bianchi’s fatal accident in similar weather conditions. The skies cleared over the weekend but it didn’t give way to a particularly exciting weekend. Lewis Hamilton won the race in a dominant effort but all the real interesting happenings in Formula One aren’t happening on-track.
Heading into this weekend’s Japanese Grand Prix, all the talk was about the weather and whether it would allow for the race to be run at all let alone to the 75% mark where full points would be awarded. The race made it four laps past the 75% mark, completing 44 of the scheduled 53 laps. When the race was red flagged and ruled complete, Lewis Hamilton was declared the winner but no one was focused on that.
A couple of laps prior, Jules Bianchi lost control in the deteriorating conditions and hit a car recovery tractor. As of writing, Bianchi is in an ICU in Japan after surgery for a head injury suffered in the collision.
It’s amazing how much can change in the span of just two hours. Nico Rosberg rolled out to the grid ahead by 22 points and an electrical glitch left him trailing by three points after the two-hour Singapore Grand Prix. Now, it’s Rosberg playing catch-up as we reach a string of tracks that play into Lewis’ hands. It looks like luck may determine who wins the World Drivers’ Championship this year.
This is Sebastian Vettel’s World Championship. The rest of the drivers are just making up the numbers. Of the 21 other drivers on the grid this season, only five have more wins in their careers than Vettel has wins this season. In fact, after winning this weekend’s race at Suzuka, Vettel’s season wins total matched the career win total of his teammate, Mark Webber. I think this fella might be a decent driver.
We’ve reached the final quarter of the 2013 Formula One World Championship but the season is almost over. Sebastian Vettel has a 77 point lead over Fernando Alonso with five races remaining. Sure, it’s unlikely that he’ll clinch this weekend but it’s certainly a matter of when, not if, Seb will win the crown. But there are still races to run and powers to rank.
We all figured that the battle for the World Drivers’ Championship would be tight as Alonso fought to keep his slower Ferrari F2012 ahead of Sebastian Vettel’s Red Bull RB8. However, things change quickly in Formula One. Vettel won the race and scored maximum points while Alonso failed to finish. The result is a four point Alonso lead. Elsewhere in Formula One, the silly season picture was clarified as most seats for the 2013 season were filled and there has been quite a bit of news about current and prospective future F1 venues. Continue reading
Last week was a hell of a lot more interesting that the Singapore Grand Prix that preceded it. The music has suddenly stopped and the seats in F1’s annual game of musical chairs are quickly filling up now that Lewis Hamilton signed with Mercedes and Sergio Perez moved to McLaren. Will the switch mean McLaren won’t back Lewis title chase? I examine that and more in this week’s Power Rankings. Continue reading
There are only five races to go in the 2011 Formula One World Championship. Sebastian Vettel leads the World Drivers’ Championship standings by 124 points over Jenson Button which means that he only needs to score one point over the final five races to win the title. McLaren says that they want to delay Vettel’s coronation for as long as possible. The only way to do that is to have Vettel taken out. Could we see McLaren sabotage or Hamilton used as a kamikaze driver (not that he needs the encouragement) for the final five races to help Button chase after the title? Continue reading
We’re a little late with the Sunday links. We had a complete internet failure for the last 24 hours at Lowdown HQ. To make up for it, here’s Keira Knightley.
Given Friday’s massive earthquake in Japan, it’s appropriate that we lead with this first-hand account. (Jalopnik)
Twitter was going its dinger during the immediate aftermath of the earthquake. Are you still trying to figure it out? Here’s a bare bones guide to Twitter. (The Atlantic)
And it’s probably best that you start on Twitter soon. Facebook will ruin your marriage. (The Guardian)
After the jump, the best beer in baseball, the Germans say stare at breasts and Charlie Sheen is still winning. Continue reading