2009 F1 predictions – how did we do?

Posted on Author Keith Collantine

Win the championship? Hardly - Ferrari only won one race...
Win the championship? Hardly - Ferrari only won one race...

At the beginning of the year I summoned up the full extent of my F1 geekery and used it to peer into the mists of time and calculate what would happen in the season ahead.

Maybe I would have been better off with a crystal ball and a Ouija board. Here’s the 15 predictions I made for 2009 and how they turned out – plus find out how accurate your predictions were…

1. Will Brawn GP get a car on the podium in their first race?

I said: Yes
Result: Yes

In fact they did much better, starting the season with a one-two win at Melbourne.

2. How many cars will be classified at Melbourne?

I said: 12
Result: 15

I got this one wrong, although there were three classified finishers who had retired when the chequered flag fell.

3. Which driver will be the first to leave his team?

I said: Nelson Piquet Jnr
Result: Sebastien Bourdais

I was close though – Bourdais was replaced at Hungary, which was Piquet’s last race for Renault.

4. How many races will McLaren win?

I said: Two
Result: Two

I’m quite happy with that given they didn’t look like winning anything in the first half of the season.

5. Who will Fernando Alonso announce he is driving for in 2010?

I said: Ferrari
Result: Ferrari

A lot of people got this one right, though quite a few picked Renault instead.

6. Which teams will go all season without using KERS?

I said: Brawn GP, Red Bull and Toro Rosso
Result: Brawn GP, Red Bull, Toro Rosso, Toyota, Williams and Force India

Six teams went all season without touching KERS, including the three I named. Only McLaren, Ferrari, Renault and BMW used it, and the latter pair eschewed it for most of the season.

7. How many drivers will have to get their front wings replaced after the first lap at Melbourne?

I said: Two
Result: Three

Mark Webber, Nick Heidfeld and Adrian Sutil were the first three drivers to have their extra-wide 2009 front wings replaced. Rubens Barrichello also damaged his when he triggered the first-lap melee, but didn’t come in to get it changed.

8. Will Renault score more points than Red Bull-Renault?

I said: No
Result: No

Red Bull were championship runners-up with 153.5 points – while Renault ended the year third from bottom with just 26.

9. Which drivers will win their home race/s?

I said: Felipe Massa
Result: No-one

There were no home winners this year, and Massa didn’t even get to compete in his home race.

10. Will Max Mosley win the FIA President election?

I said: Yes
Result: No

Mosley offered not to stand for election again as part of the deal to keep the FOTA teams from leaving the sport.

11. How many teams will announce before the final race they are leaving F1?

I said: Two
Result: One

Only BMW announced before the end of the season they would leave F1. But Toyota announced their decision to leave F1 just three days after the final race of the year at Abu Dhabi.

12. Which of BMW?s drivers will have the best season?

I said: Robert Kubica
Result: Nick Heidfeld

This proved a bone of contention when it came to the end-of-year season rankings. Heidfeld out-scored his team mate but many people – myself included – thought Kubica was more impressive over the course of the year.

13. Will Ferrari win the constructors? title for the 17th time?

I said: Yes
Result: No

I gave up on this one after they went the first three races without scoring a point.

14. Which driver will announce his retirement?

I said: Giancarlo Fisichella
Result: TBC

It’s probably too early to call this one as no drivers have officially announced their retirement from F1. With Fisichella a Ferrari test driver next year it looks like the end of his racing career. Raikkonen is on a ‘sabbatical’ but it remains to be seen whether he will actually return in the future.

15. Who will win the drivers? championship?

I said: Robert Kubica
Result: Jenson Button

My hunch at the start of the year that BMW were there-or-thereabouts on pace and would out-develop Brawn over the course of the season proved massively wrong.

How did you do?

So I got a measly four predictions correct. How did you do? Check back on your predictions in the original article and post your score here in the comments:

F1 2009: Your predictions