Fernando Alonso, Ferrari, Hungaroring, 2012

Who will win the 2012 championships?

Debates and pollsPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

Fernando Alonso, Ferrari, Hungaroring, 2012F1 is set for a frenetic end to the season with nine races crammed into 13 weekends.

These races will decide the outcome of the world championships, currently led by Fernando Alonso and Red Bull.

Both have some rapid rivals behind them who are getting within striking range. Can they hold on to claim the titles – or will there be more changes at the top before the year is out?

Drivers’ championship

After 11 races last year Sebastian Vettel held an 85-point lead in the drivers’ championship over Mark Webber.

Alonso’s advantage is less than half that at the same stage this year. He has a 40-point margin over second place which once again is occupied by Webber. There is a maximum of 225 points available over the remaining races.

This chart shows drivers? scores throughout the season. Use the controls below to show/hide different drivers:

http://www.f1fanatic.co.uk/charts/2012drivercolours.csv
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20
Fernando Alonso 10 35 37 43 61 76 86 111 129 154 164
Mark Webber 12 24 36 48 48 73 79 91 116 120 124
Sebastian Vettel 18 18 28 53 61 73 85 85 100 110 122
Lewis Hamilton 15 30 45 49 53 63 88 88 92 92 117
Kimi Raikkonen 6 16 16 34 49 51 55 73 83 98 116
Nico Rosberg 0 0 25 35 41 59 67 75 75 76 77
Jenson Button 25 25 43 43 45 45 45 49 50 68 76
Romain Grosjean 0 0 8 23 35 35 53 53 61 61 76
Sergio Perez 4 22 22 22 22 22 37 39 39 47 47
Kamui Kobayashi 8 8 9 9 19 19 21 21 21 33 33
Pastor Maldonado 0 0 4 4 29 29 29 29 29 29 29
Michael Schumacher 0 1 1 2 2 2 2 17 23 29 29
Paul di Resta 1 7 7 15 15 21 21 27 27 27 27
Felipe Massa 0 0 0 2 2 10 11 11 23 23 25
Bruno Senna 0 8 14 14 14 15 15 16 18 18 24
Nico Hulkenberg 0 2 2 2 3 7 7 17 17 19 19
Jean-Eric Vergne 0 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4
Daniel Ricciardo 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2
Heikki Kovalainen 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Vitaly Petrov 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Timo Glock 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Charles Pic 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Narain Karthikeyan 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Pedro de la Rosa 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

Fernando Alonso

164 points

Alonso has rarely failed to get the most out of the Ferrari. Since the beginning of the European season the F2012 is much-improved and, though still not the fastest car, is a strong all-rounder. The well-drilled Ferrari team have turned out some excellent pit stops.

But if one of his better-equipped rivals emerges from the pack as a consistent challenger, he may yet be kept from a third world championship.

Mark Webber

124 points (-40)

When the season began, just 11% of readers tipped Webber to out-score Vettel. He has done so far but in recent races the momentum has been with his team mate.

Sebastian Vettel

Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull, Valencia, 2012122 points (-42)

Unlucky not to win in Valencia and doubly so that Alonso picked up the victory. But his car remains more than a match for the Ferrari on pure pace and gives him the chance to grind down Alonso’s lead in the coming races.

Lewis Hamilton

117 points (-47)

Winning in Hungary was a vital boost to his championship credentials. Like Vettel, he will need to score consistently better than Alonso in the coming races to get back in the hunt, but that’s not always been a feature of his title campaigns.

Kimi Raikkonen

116 points (-48)

The 2007 champion is a fascinating dark horse in the title race. There is much expectation that Lotus, armed with their new double DRS, will finally come good this weekend and deliver their overdue first win of 2012. That and the E20’s kindness to its tyres could prove significant weapons in Raikkonen’s arsenal.

Who will win the 2012 F1 drivers’ title?

Who will win the 2012 F1 drivers' title?

  • Fernando Alonso (49%)
  • Mark Webber (7%)
  • Sebastian Vettel (9%)
  • Lewis Hamilton (21%)
  • Kimi Raikkonen (15%)
  • Someone else (0%)

Total Voters: 379

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Constructors’ championship

Red Bull hold a 53-point lead in the teams’ title race with 387 still to be won.

This chart shows teams? scores throughout the season. Use the controls below to show/hide different teams.

Teams chart

http://www.f1fanatic.co.uk/charts/2012teamcolours.csv
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20
Red Bull 30 42 64 101 109 146 164 176 216 230 246
McLaren 40 55 88 92 98 108 133 137 142 160 193
Lotus 6 16 24 57 84 86 108 126 144 159 192
Ferrari 10 35 37 45 63 86 97 122 152 177 189
Mercedes 0 1 26 37 43 61 69 92 98 105 106
Sauber 12 30 31 31 41 41 58 60 60 80 80
Williams 0 8 18 18 43 44 44 45 47 47 53
Force India 1 9 9 17 18 28 28 44 44 46 46
Toro Rosso 2 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6
Caterham 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Marussia 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
HRT 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

Red Bull

246 points

Red Bull’s situation in the constructors’ championship is akin to Alonso’s in the drivers’ title race. They have a healthy lead but not enough to relax and they could do with their closest rivals takings points off each other in the coming races.

Their key strength is that both drivers have been consistently scoring decent points, with just three no-scores between them.

McLaren

Lewis Hamilton, McLaren, Montreal, 2012193 points (-53)

It’s 14 years since McLaren last won the constructors’ championship and you sense they are aching to end that streak. Especially as they’ve been second on seven occasions in that time (and not forgetting 2007 as well).

Going into the summer break McLaren had sorted out their pit stop problems and made a major performance gain with their last upgrade. If they return to action as competitive as they were at the end of July, with Jenson Button seemingly recovered from his early-season slump, they should be Red Bull’s closest challengers.

Lotus

192 points (-54)

Lotus have done everything but win a race so far this year – they’ve even had both drivers on the podium on two separate occasions. Third place is already in excess of their pre-season aims, but that’s not going to stop them aiming even higher.

Ferrari

189 points (-57)

Ferrari are fourth in the constructors’ championship while Alonso leads the drivers’ title. That is a credit to Alonso’s driving and a damning indictment of Felipe Massa’s.

If Massa can increase his contribution to their points tally (currently just 13%) they should make progress. It may even save his place at the team for next year, though it’s hard to believe it isn’t already too late for that.

Who will win the 2012 F1 constructors’ title?

Who will win the 2012 F1 constructors' title?

  • Red Bull (73%)
  • McLaren (15%)
  • Lotus (10%)
  • Ferrari (2%)
  • Someone else (0%)

Total Voters: 324

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Debates and polls

Browse all debates and polls

Images ?? Ferrari spa/Ercole Colombo, Red Bull/Getty images, McLaren/Hoch Zwei

131 comments on “Who will win the 2012 championships?”

  1. I think realistically its between Alonso and Hamilton and im just not sure which one to tip. Hamilton will be faster but Alonsos got a pretty decent points advantage. My gut tells me Hamilton will take it.

    While Kimi, Vettel and Webber will be there or there abouts, I just don’t think any are as talented as the main two.

    1. Will depend on other drivers, if Lotus and RBR stays competitive (which we can expect) we could have huge point swing in few races, lots of guys fighting for top spot means you quickly go from 1st to 8th (Assuming Massa join the party or any outsider) and that’s quite a lot of points

      1. I agree 100% with this. This is why I see Alonso’s point lead reducing quick. When you are coming 5th or 6th you are losing alot of points per weekend. 40-50 point lead reduces pretty quickly in that type of situation.

        Also 1 DNF for Alonso and he really is back in the pack.

      2. Huge points swings are indeed possible. On a day where everything falls into place for Red Bull, Mclaren and Lotus the very best Ferrari can hope for is 7th and 8th as their car is not a match for those of their closest rivals. If this sort of result happens 2 or 3 times Alonso could tumble down the order pretty suddenly.

    2. I totally disagree with the comment about talent. Sure Hamilton is fast, but a real talented driver manages everything, he needs to be very, very intelligent, and let’s face it, Hamilton lacks that side. He made so many stupid mistakes that I can’t see him as a world champion ever again unless he has a fantastic car and takes pole position in a regular basis and lead from there. In my opinion he is the 5th best F1 driver today.

      1. What you mean like Vettel every single race he wins?

        What mistakes has Hamilton made this year? Hamilton has been flawless. McLaren have made mistakes.

        1. Hamilton has not been flawless. The only driver close to being “flawless” is Alonso.

          Hamilton lost out to Button in Australia from the clean side and then never made an impression on him throughout the race. Alonso has not had one poor start where he lost a place.

          In Malaysia and Bahrain Hamilton made no impression on Alonso when he was behind Alonso even though Alonso had a vastly inferior car.

          In Monaco, Hamilton got nailed by both Alonso and Vettel in pit stop phases. In Alonso’s case, Alonso had dropped back from Hamilton to conserve his tyres for the end of the stint.

          1. You assume the Ferrari is inferior in the wet. I don’t think you can say that with certainty.

            And at Monaco Hamilton’s team never told him what was going on.

          2. At Australia McLaren changed Lewis clutch settings at the start, despite he was happy with the ones he has, therfore he had a bad start. If you watched the season, you might have seen whoever leads the race has a huge advantage with the tyres. One thing is to come close to the leader, the other is to overtake him. The following driver uses up his tyres driving in dirty air very fast.

            What about Alonso at Canada? Lewis drove much more intelligent than him there , if you want to argue like that.

            At Hungary Lewis drove very, very intelligent to keep the much faster Lotus behind. He let Kimi come close, us him up all his KERS, let him drive in dirty air, and then drove away from him to get out of DRS, and this all with saving his older tyres

          3. @Thomas

            No, I do assume the Ferrari is inferior in the wet. The last stint of the Malaysian Grand Prix for Alonso and Hamilton was done on medium tyres. They both pitted a lap apart. Hamilton had qualified on pole over a second quicker the Alonso. Hamilton closed in on Alonso by four seconds over 15 lap stint which is way lower then what it should be considering as mentioned Hamilton qualified more then a second quicker then Alonso.

            @Sabrina

            Hamilton had poor getaways in Monaco and Germany. Alonso’s clutch overheated at Hungary yet even with poor getaway he was still able to retain position on long straight to the first corner and pass Raikkonen further along.

            In Canada, the Ferrari team made the wrong call on strategy not Alonso.

            In Hungary Hamilton drove very well but Alonso did better in a similar scenario in Germany where he first fended off Vettel then Button for the entire race.

            The point of the discussion was to show Hamilton had not driven flawlessly because quite clearly he has not. Alonso has driven better then him proven by the Driver’s Championship and on the half way stage driver rankings on this site.

      2. @Roger Camp ”He made so many stupid mistakes that I can’t see him as a world champion ever again” – Witch year are you referring to ?, this year Hamilton has made NO mistake and last year ?, and so what about last year, don’t tell me you are another ANTI Hamilton guy

        1. Watch this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pX3qTV3Ss5k, one of many videos that we can see (again) his mistakes last year alone. So far this year it’s ok. I hope he keeps this way. No I’m not anti Hamilton, I just don’t support him as much as other drivers.

          1. But @rogercamp, last year Alonso was also far from flawless, think, for example of his 2011 Spa race. It’s this year he’s been doing great. And Hamilton also did well, but without the nearly flawless teamwork Ferrari have been able to give Alonso (and I do agree that is something Alonso might have helped cement) it certainly added up to less results.

    3. JimmyTheIllustratedBlindSolidSilverBeachStackapopolis III
      27th August 2012, 15:18

      webber for champion if 7/9 of the races are dry which with spa japan korea and brazil still to come is sadly unlikely lol.

    4. I think it will be between alonso two redbulls and Hamilton though alonso is the only one to have finished 3 times first and in the points every single ace so far.. But with nine races to go anything is possible! I hope alonso wins this year

  2. and Red Bull are no brainers for the constructors. They have two even, high performing drivers. Both Ferrari and McLaren lack a credible #2 driver and they will suffer for it.

    1. I think McLaren have a set of drivers who are both good enough, just they are not really able to get the highest level of performance out of both cars on any give weekend!

      1. I reckon track position is equally an issue rather than just pure performance, particularly in qualifying & the start. They need Australia-esque weekends If they’re going to take the fight to Red Bull.

        Drivers will be extremely close but Red Bull for me is likely to take the Constructors – by a considerable amount.

    2. I think saying that Button is not a “credible number 2” is a little OTT. He has struggled this year with the tyres, and in general I think Hamilton has reasserted his control over the team. If Mclaren are quick at a track my money will always be on Hamilton, but that’s no to say that Button will not pop up with results when given the opportunity. The problem is, as many commentators have said in the past, he needs everything to be perfect set up wise to be fast enough to challenge for the win.

      1. Yes, funny how last year tyre issues were a perfectly acceptable excuse for Lewis’s supporters to cite as he had a poor season but its a different story if Jenson has similar issues. Button gets a bum rap off people just because he goes about his job differently to Lewis. Ok Lewis is usually tremendously exciting to watch has he wrings the neck of his car, who could fail to enjoy that. However, I also liked watching Jenson last season calmly racing around after qualifying a few tenths back and more often than not finding himself on the podium and and taking a healthy clutch of wins to boot. We are witnessing a great British pairing at an iconic British team, enjoy it whilst it lasts!!

    3. actually lotus-renault is scoring more points than anyone in the last half of the year so redbull is not that far apart if ferrari or maclaren are faster but slower than lotus …..

      1. I too think that Lotus might have a good change of the WCC, especially if Button doesn’t pick up well enough, or if the July pace of McLaren proves a fluke. Red Bull is still a contender too, but they haven’t really shone for me over the last few races and I rather hope they won’t have found great pace over the summer stop.

    4. Jayfreese (@)
      27th August 2012, 19:09

      Looking to the poll, people doesnt tend to see any of the Red Bulls driver winning the Drivers’ but almost everybody sees the Red Bull crew winning the Construcstors’

      1. That’s what struck me too???!!!To make it even worse, neither of the RBR drivers are not even past 10%.
        I’d rather give best chance to Vettel for winning it. He’s got the equipment and he’s got speed.

    5. Thomas, I agree about Red Bull and Ferarri, but to dismiss a world champion of JBs quality as not a credible 2nd. driver is pure hyperbole, especially when you consider that he is a race winner this year. McLarens problem this year is down to the tyres being so critical and their drivers styles being so different, what works for Lewis leaves Jenson on cold tyres and what works for Jenson leaves Lewis on destroyed tyres. What normally would be a team strength is, this year, a liability due to the tyres unpredictability and critical temperature range.

  3. With Alonso’s current form it’s tough to see him coming 2nd or worse by the end of the year. If he has a retirement at a race that Lewis goes on to win then it will really shake things up! Lewis will need to pull out all the stops, keep out of trouble and pray that there are no more team mistakes. It’s more than possible, but it’ll be very hard!

  4. I get the feeling that Webber and Vettel will keep chipping points away from each other, which if Fernando keeps up his form, will allow him to break free and win the title. However, with 2 consistent points finishers, Red Bull will run away with the constructors.

  5. To note: Interestingly, Lewis has scored less points at this stage of the championship than he did at this stage last season, which we know was his worst, although I’d put that down to the field being closer & the unpredictability of this season. For him, he needs to maintain his elusive approach in striving for consistency, by that he needs to consistent be up there & McLaren to get their race strategies right, which I have a gutsy feeling will be vital in the 2nd half of this championship, he’d be hoping Jenson will be right there in the mix taking points off his other rivals (and him as well, JB is not giving up that’s unquestionable). For me it’s the best four (Alonso, Hamilton, Vettel, Raikkonen) that will end the season, a particular order I won’t say.

    Something tells me that in Spa an underdog will rise from the shadows & the much expected won’t happen however something else tells me Lotus will have a considerable advantage enough with their passive F-duct for Kimi to get the win.

    1. Bring it on! I pretty much agree with you on that @younger-hamii, the only chance for anyone else than Alonso to take the title is being consistently close to the podium while it would also need Alonso to have a bit of a dip in consistency.
      But the differences are not big enough that its a foregone conclusion, just remember who was in 1st and second in the championship at this point in 2010.

  6. I picked Alonso to win in 2010 and 2011 (before testing, in case you think I’m an utter moron in the case of last year). I still think he should have won in 2010. Before the start of this season, I decided to go with the flow and back Vettel, so I’m now convinced that Alonso will win, ha ha! I would like Lewis to win, but if not, I’d far prefer Alonso to get his third championship than Vettel.

    1. Yeah, now Sebastian has his double, he can wait 6 years for another lol.

    2. Are we watching the same season mate?

  7. I think Vettel will win it. He is the most talented from this year’s contenders, he is an all round driver, a thing that can’t be said about the others ( with the obviuos exception of Alonso) and, in 2010, in a much more difficult moment and with less experience, he pulled himself together and won it.
    Alonso has a good chance too, I really think one of the two will win.

    1. He is the most talented from this year’s contenders,

      Don’t make me laugh.

      1. lol. Vettel certainly has the ability that with the best car he can do a few great laps (in comparison to Mark Webber) to get pole, then win from that position.

        Vettel is not the best qualifier (Senna) nor racer (Clark) of all time nor of this era and when he’s won it’s been due to an advantage. If he can turn this around by for example joining Mclaren and whipping Hamilton then maybe I’d think differently. Till then well, my opinion of him is low..

        Hamilton and Alonso are in another league in comparison to Vettel. Kimi and an, at his best Scumacher are also better than Vettel. I just hope Redbull aren’t going to produce a wonderful car for Vettel to cruise to another championship. I’m supporting Ham and Kimi for the championship, I’d also be happy if Alonso wins it – as it’s thoroughly deserved.

        Also if Alonso is ill/retires/dies and Massa get’s preferential treatment by ferrari and overcomes a massive defecit to win the championship then I’d be bouncing about my house!

        Underdog supporter!!

        1. Sorry – underdog supporter doesn’t some me up well – although it’s true, with F1 I really don’t like seeing sided competition – I didn’t want Schumi to win in 03 or 04 and I really hate red bull. I’ve tried it twice, worst energy drink out there. Monster’s much better, it doesn’t taste like wee

        2. Hamilton and Alonso are in another league in comparison to Vettel.

          I think it’s hilarious that people are still making hyperbolic statements like this after last season. But hey, you go on clinging to that idea as hard as you need to!

          1. He won in the best car? Is Nigel Mansel also the greatest driver ever? Even Damon Hill has a better track record than Vettel, he won in a truely midfield car and nearly won in what can be considered a backmarker car.

          2. @infi24r

            he won in a truly midfield car

            Jordan finished two places higher in the 1998 constructors’ championship than Toro Rosso did ten years later.

          3. @keithcollantine
            I think he was referring to the Arrows.

          4. Oh, ignore me, I misread. The fact the lesser Schumacher almost beat him in the same car takes the shine off a bit too. Saying Hill has a better track record than Vettel is rediculous, they’re in different leagues.

          5. “Jordan finished two places higher in the 1998 constructors’ championship than Toro Rosso did ten years later.”

            @keithcollantine,

            That is because Torro Rosso got a good car half way through the season. They ran the STR2B for the first half which was in all honestly, awful and not capable of scoring points.

          6. @infi24r Sorry, how did we go from “in the same league as Hamilton and Alonso” to “greatest driver ever”? Was anyone calling him that? (Answer: no.)

          7. @aka_robyn Alonso and Hamilton are top 10 of all time imo. By putting Vettel in their class he is too. Which is absurd. He’s never even raced a world champion in the same car.

          8. @infi24r What I think is absurd, after two championships and a dominating season like 2011, is the way people continue to concoct new and increasingly specific criteria Vettel will need to meet in order for them to not have a “low” opinion of him.

            Obviously you should feel free to put anyone you want in your personal top ten drivers of all time, but to declare it “absurd” for anyone to consider Vettel in the same league as Hamilton and Alonso is a bit much.

        3. Vettel is not the best qualifier (Senna) nor racer (Clark) of all time

          I love how fair your comparisons are. Vettel is only 25, and you are speaking of him in the company of perhaps two of the all time greatest drivers. I suppose one could say that just proves what a great driver he really is.
          I think comparing him to Alonso and Hamilton is absolutely a credible thing to do, as he is comparable to Hamilton in his driving skill (though not quite Alonso just yet). @aka_robyn ‘s point sums it up perfectly: people who hate Vettel will have to get ever more stringent with their criteria, as he’s only going to get better.

          1. I think comparing him to Alonso and Hamilton is absolutely a credible thing to do, as he is comparable to Hamilton in his driving skill (though not quite Alonso just yet).

            I just honestly don’t like it, as a Hamilton fan, when there’s sudden capabilities of comparing Vettel with Hamilton but not Alonso but also to be open minded about the subject, some have already & I will state that it’s very difficult to make comparisons (contrasts are more easier) with the ‘best three on the grid’.

            If there’s anything notable comparisons with Vettel & Hamilton then here’s something interesting (hopefully) that I’ve found: analyse Vettel’s 2009 & 2010 seasons with Hamilton’s 2007 & 2008 seasons, individually they were roughly the same age & had competitive cars under them, other than that let’s just put the subject to bed temporarily by agreeing that Vettel, Alonso & Hamilton are great BUT different drivers in their own right & uniquely gifted, that is probably until years have gone down the line & hopefully more showdowns will give us more of an insight.

          2. @younger-hamii – And they both won one championship, and came runner up in the other. The are comparable.

    2. LOL is that you, Horner?

      1. or might be Marko?

    3. @christian, if Vetell is so talented and the only “all round driver” how do you explain his team-mate not only being ahead in points ( they both have “ifs” and “could haves”) but also being genuinely faster quite often this year ?

      Seb is obviously very talented but “all round” is yet to be demonstrated.

      1. I didn’t say “the” only, I said he is “an” all round driver, and I said Alonso is one too. The other 3 are not.
        And Mark Webber is a very good driver, I don’t see how the best driver in F1 can’t be behind ( he has almost the same points) a good one.
        I agree it wasn’t Vettel’s best season to date, but in spite of this he still has very good title chances. That should say something.

    4. I agree; I think he is the most talented of this years contenders, particurlarly when based on previous performances (I’m doling so, because you never lose talent; you can only develop it)
      In the junior formulae, he won 18/20 races in Formula BMW; an amazing feat.
      In F1, he took a Toro Rosso to pole and then the win, and only made one obvious mistake the whole race, which only cost him a second, if that.
      On his debut, he scored a point, which was amazing, particurlarly given his age.
      At Turkey 2006, he topped a practice session at Turkey.
      In 2009, he took several poles and 4 wins, one of them in torrential conditions at China.
      In 2010, he was almost endlessly let down by his car, yet battled through and won the title, albeit when ferrari messed up their strategy.
      Last year will remain one of the greatest in history, despite the frankly ridiculous and unfounded allegations of cheating, both by the public, and he consistently was 0.5 seconds faster than mark Webber, who is no slouch, let me remind you.
      This year, he is looking a bit on the shaky side, but he has driven fairly well, butneeds to up his game to haul in Alonso.
      Argue with that!!

  8. I think it will be betw Ham and Rai, this not because the Finnish nationality, but Ham will have the best car and Rai the best head together with a good car.

  9. Alonso already showed how great he is in driving F1 cars…

  10. Alonso will win it though I still hope Webber does. Vettel might have a chance if RB starts supporting him only, Kimi might be the surprise. I don’t see Hamilton in the running this year.

  11. 40 points is not that much in 9 races left. Ferrari needs to update their car, otherwise it would be really difficult for Alonso to win this title. I have the feeling that we are entering a second phase of the championship were the order of the cars is pretty much established. So, there will be no more surprises from which Alonso and Ferrari can gain anything, I think.

    1. Pat Fry reckoned that recent Ferrari updates(a couple of races) didn’t work as expected but he said the problem has been solved. so there might be bounce back from Ferrari.

      1. Let’s hope for that, because it would be a real shame to let down such a brilliant performance until now.

      2. Sviatoslav Andrushko (@)
        28th August 2012, 10:32

        And yet, what Fry said doesn’t mean that they won’t face some new problems. I would be comforted if Alonso had 70-80 points ahead of nearest rival.

  12. When someone builds a 40 points lead with an slighlty inferior car, you can only wonder if this was “all went to plan” for Ferrari and Alonso that
    he managed to get enough buffer between him & his closest rival. Even though I agree with the rest of us about Kimi, Mark and Lewis – Fernando is in a
    very different league this year and after a long gap of 6 years, he could sense that WDC is quite within his reach. His driving so far has been
    sensational. With no reliability issues; he got into point scoring positions in all the 11 races with Chinese GP being the low key.

    1. JimmyTheIllustratedBlindSolidSilverBeachStackapopolis III
      27th August 2012, 15:30

      “When someone builds a 40 points lead with an slighlty inferior car, you can only wonder if this was “all went to plan” for Ferrari and Alonso”

      Absolutely if you are talking about the dream plan all of ferrari went to sleep thinking about on the eve of the first race when their worst fears about their competitiveness were confirmed. Cos there is no way they planned to have such a slow and difficult car to drive but still have 40 points in the bag at christmas time last year.

    2. I think its also pretty clear that the Ferrari hasn’t been anywhere near as bad as many have made out. Forget Massa, he’s hopeless. If you had Alo with But, Vet, Ham, Web, Rai they would be leading both championships.

      I also think that the Williams is probably as good as the Ferrari and accordingly wish Alonso had been driving it. LOL!

  13. It’s between Alonso and Vettel for the world title while the lesser drivers (Webber, Kimi and Lewis) will fall away like they always do. Vettel is the king at this time of year and that’s a FACT!

    1. Your wrong about Kimi. But I think you’re right that it’s down to Alonso and Vettel – if Newey can ensure he has the best package from now till the end of the year.

      Redbull are so close to big points in comparison to Alonso that they can easily cut the deficit. I also feel Newey can and will provide the car Vettel needs for his 3rd consecutive title. But, and it’s a big but…

      I really hope when we’re at the American GP there will be 3 contenders – Alonso, Kimi and Hamilton!

      1. To justify why your wrong about Kimi losing it at the end of the year watch the 2007 season review.

        Kimi does have issues in achieving the most out of a car but he is still awesome

        Also Ham is not a lesser driver this year, he has had no “brain fades” and if Mclaren provide him with equipment equal to the best HE WILL WIN!!!

    2. I agree with tbone and dd42, it all depends on whether Ferrari can deliver the car for Alonso. Vettel hasn’t been as strong this year, but if Red Bull give him the fastest car (and reliability) I think he’ll get his brain in gear and stop making mistakes.

    3. I agree, with Vettel’s previous performances at the newer tracks towards the end of the calendar I think he’ll be a force to be reckoned with. Alonso’s lead will definately pay him dividends however. Come Spa I think it’ll be a lot easier to make this decision…

  14. I think Alonso will take the title home. When the field is so even, the rest of the pack will be mostly taking points from each other rather than effectively chase Alonso.

  15. I dont think Alonso will have the car to stay ahead. A driver can only do so much.

    1. what is wrong with the car ?

      1. Usually this season the answer to that comes down to how well the tires are working and lasting on a given Sunday based on their setup and the stability of the air and track temps. As with all the drivers and their cars.

  16. I still think that Hamilton would make a final “dash” for the championship as he still had a faster car than Alonso, so is the pit stop times. But it might take a few more races and a few more wins for Ham.

  17. KiMi is gonna win at spa and monza. Then we’ll see how many is gonna bet on Alonso to win the WDC this year. With the double-drs im hopping kimi finally gets that elusive win. Vettel is going to be stronger, rest of the season,and Alonso’s lead will be cut down drastically if they dont improve the Ferrari. And as for lewis,lets just hope he doesnt get a pentaly in the remaining races. :P

  18. I think Alonso has the advantage of having so many competitors and different winning teams (and Lotus, which should be able to win), unless one sole rival emerges due to others’ retirements or Alonso himself has a few DNFs, it’ll be hard for one driver to consistently outscore Alonso and the others. That being said, if they all were to finish regularly in front of Alonso, things might get interesting near the end of the season.

    I think Ferrari also have a car that, being less conservative than their previous 2 efforts, has more potential, or at least, more areas in which it can be further developed and/or understood. I think McLaren doesn’t have as much room and with Newey admitting the double diffuser ban hurt them, it’s not hard to imagine their car is good, but now lacks a special gizmo to set them apart. I think Alonso’s title bid won’t be jeopardized by his car.

    For the constructors, it’s definitely between Red Bull and McLaren, and in my eyes, mostly up to which team can get both of their drivers to score regularly, well up in the points. All 4 drivers are lacking some in consistency in results (Vettel and Hamilton have been performing consistent, but missed out on results a couple of times) and Webber has had a great start of the season, but since his victory at Silverstone, he has paled a slight bit. McLaren would need total consistence and Webber would have to fall back a lot, but stranger things have happened. That being said, I’d expect the order to close at Red Bull – McLaren – Lotus – Ferrari.

    1. This is true, if Alonso comes 2nd all the time. Thing is, there are couple cars that are faster which will reduce Alonso to 3-6th. It wont matter if there is going to be a different winner every time, Alonso’s lead will disappear in an instance.

  19. I think Alonso will take it. The grid is so close right now that everyone is taking points off everyone. Alonso just needs to keep out of trouble, get the best result he can, and then I think the others will hand him the championship by fighting the wrong guys, too hard, too often.
    In terms of the constructors championship, it can only go to RB.
    Lotus isn’t close enough, Ferrari only has one driver, McLaren occationally has two capable drivers, but I don’t think its enough of the time in order to have a shot at reeling in RB.

  20. Chris (@tophercheese21)
    27th August 2012, 14:12

    My brain tells me Alonso. But my heart tells me Hamilton.

    I’m going with the latter on this one. I think that both Hamilton and Mclaren are in the best shape they’ve been in for years, both mentally and physically, and i think that if Alonso’s performance dips at all, then Hamilton should be there to pounce. But that’s easier said than done, because Alonso is close to unstoppable, even in the somewhat challenged Ferrari.

    The question for Mclaren is, can they keep up their development on the car, and can they keep their excellent form in pitstops going. Lewis will always have a strong chance to win, as long as the car, and team are there for him.

    I would love nothing more than to see Hamilton win it all this season, but i’m not going to be surprised if Alonso does it, just because of how good he is behind the wheel.

    1. For me too keeping consistent pitstops, development, but mainly sane race strategy, are the question marks on McLaren @tophercheese21 – if they keep doing all that right I think Hamilton will be going great, and Button will be up there again too, they really should be good for the WCC and WDC. But I am not certain they can, based on the previous years.

  21. If Alonso drove for Mclaren, Red Bull or Lotus, his lead would have been greater than 40 pts (arguably) and the question of whether or not he would hold on to it would have been easier to answer. Even Alonso will have trouble holding on to that lead with the fourth fastest car. To win the WDC he will need Ferrari to improve outright pace and some wet races.

    Whoever wins this year though, we wont know until the Brazil GP. Cant see anyone claiming the WDC before that.

    The summer break is too long! Especially with so many things hanging in the air. Its like a calm before a storm.

    1. That’s hard to justify because if he’d driven for Mclaren he would have been faced with 10 sec+ pitstops at least thrice – easily demoting him from race winning positions – 25 points to back of the field 8 points. 17×3 =51 points..

      Although I do think if he’s been at redbull and with No1 status they would be considered unstoppable as he’d probably have a 100+ point lead at this point,,

      1. True dd42, but I can’t help but agree with vjanik that had Alonso been in the Lotus, they would have won several races by now, and they’d be head of the WCC too (although, maybe Grosjean would whither again?).

  22. No question about Alonso’s talent, but I feel that he was lucky so far to build a 40 points gap with a not so good car. Only 8 points between the 2nd and 5th position in the championship, just to see how close this championship is. I believe that if Lotus can make the DDRS work, than it is what’s going to make the difference and Kimi can grab the title, which I so much hope so.

  23. Checkout Maldonado’s graph. If he’d not won then he’d have 4 points and be considered as being terrible in comparison to Bruno. Please Frank, give Bottas No1 status, take Maldonado’s money by all means, but demote him to a test role, he’s really not able to race well, but keep Bruno on so we can establish if he deserves to be in F1 – Pasta certainly doesn’t atm

    1. watch out he will crash if he see you for saying that !

    2. Exactly. People will say that pasta is terrible but has a lot more points than Senna, making Senna even more rubbish, but don’t actually consider the extremely fortunate circumstances of that 25 point haul from Barcelona. Under normal circumstances he would have picked up a few at most, and Bruno is so much more consistent, and perhaps slightly faster on occasion. And, as we’ve seen with Emperor Alonso this year, consistency is king.

    3. As a side note – looking at the lines for only Senna and pasta is very telling. One has been quietly scoring a few points almost every weekend, whereas the other has only scored twice, with a sudden spike at Barcelona, and hasn’t scored since. The quiet, consistent scorer has been closing the gap to his teammate and, going by both drivers’ recent form, looks poised to overtake him in the standings, despite the other’s win.

  24. The double DRS will only help in qualifying in spa and moza. and don’t forget Mercedes will be up there as well.

  25. I think Alonso will win it. I HOPE Webber will win it. And if not Webber, then Raikkonen. Anybody except Vettel to be honest.

    1. Ive been saying this since 2009.

    2. +1 from me.

  26. Yeah given that the teams are still trying to understand the tires I think one driver or team can be surprisingly competitive or uncompetitive at any given race weekend, so trying to predict the ultimate winner(s) is still very difficult I feel.

    Averaged out, I don’t see one particular driver consistantly dominating such that if it is FA he starts to run away with it, or anyone else and they start to catch and surpass FA soon. Of course a few DNF’s by FA could change everything. So I think it will remain close and could be between 3 drivers with the last race of the season remaining.

    And if it comes down to 3 drivers with one race to go, I predict those 3 will be FA, LH, and SV. And if it is among those 3 I pick FA as the one with the strongest mental game.

    What will be fascinating to see is…FM is already a non-factor and won’t be fighting FA for points. JB is likely in the same spot but hasn’t come out and said he will be there for LH. Only a matter of time before it will go without saying anyway. On the other hand MW and SV are both still in it. And both Lotus drivers seem to have fairly equal performances and chances to progress, but perhaps RG will get ‘the order’ if KR wins a race soon and climbs closer to the front runners.

    Bottom line for me…it remains that no one driver will likely dominate for the rest of the season, but one driver may somewhat outpoint the rest in the second half, and of course if that driver is FA then the WDC is his before the final race since he leads right now. If FA doesn’t outpoint in the second half, then that should leave the WDC open for at least two drivers with a few races or one race to go, and I put the mental game as being to FA’s advantage, which I think is what it will come down to.

    1. I don’t think FA has the mental capacity over any of his competitors as he saw in Abu Dhabi 2010.. I think 9/10 have their right on the grid and won’t ever make a mistake for him to pounce. Aside from Vettel not being able to handle the pressure from Button in Canada 2011, he hasn’t made big mistakes whilst leading a race, and Hamilton can definitely be relied upon to bring home the gold for GB this year.

      Fingers crossed it’s going to be close…

      I

      1. “won’t ever make a mistake for him to pounce.” Sounds like too broad a statement to make, to me.

        “Hamilton can definitely be relied upon to bring home the gold for GB this year.” While I respect your opinion and your hope for LH, relying upon him while the pressure is at it’s greatest has not exactly been his strong suit.

        In terms of mental capacity to handle pressure when it is at it’s greatest, as it relates to FA, SV, and LH I would rate FA highest by far amongst the three we’re talking about, with SV second, and LH a distant 3rd. It’s not just about making mistakes when leading a race. Fighting for wins and the WDC is what we are talking about, with nobody in a car that is utterly dominant.

        1. I do agree with your order in terms of mental capacity FA followed by SV then LH but I think they can all hold it together as required to win races and the championship..

          Maybe that mental edge will be enough to help Alonso keep his lead till the end of the year, if so it’d be a well deserved championship

  27. The great thing about this year is that nobody really has a clue how to answer this.. Articles like this are the ones you’d like to pull out and wave in peoples faces after all the fanboy definitive statements made..

    If I was Alonso at this point in the Championship I think the person I’d worry about most would be Vettel.

    If he gathers enough momentum he’ll just steamtrain to the end like we’ve all seen him do before.. all other realistic contenders have their flaws/disadvantages ; webber, doesn’t know how to win a championship and can’t seem to win consistantly like Vettel, Hamilton is accident prone and so is his team, Kimi seems to have the ability but the team need to figure out how extract the maximum out of the car’s potential.

  28. Keith, those cumulative graphs are a great way of showing how the championship is progressing and ebbing/flowing.

    One suggestion though, do you think in future you could start the lines at (0,0)? That way it doesn’t look like Button had a 25 point head start.

  29. It’s very, very difficult to say.
    The fact is that there isn’t a superior car. Red Bull and Mclaren keep changing place at the top. Mclaren was clearly faster in the opening stages, then Red Bull had some very good performances and now Mclaren is back on top. And there is Ferrari, which is rarely the best car, but it’s always very close.

    In the end, I think it will be a tough fight between Alonso, Hamilton and Vettel. I don’t want to vote, but if I have to I would choose Vettel. Why? I don’t know. I had faith in him after Spa 2010: his situation back then was much worse than his current situation. And then he likes a lot the tracks in the second part of the year.

  30. Dimitris 1395 (@)
    27th August 2012, 17:30

    It’s not easy to make predictions at that point. Alonso is driving brilliantly. Though Ferrari has a worse car than their main rivals and they have to continuously upgrade their car if they want Alonso to claim his 3rd WDC. Hamilton and Raikkonen had some mishaps early in the season but now they seem faster than anyone else. Webber is a big surprise for me. He is getting older and somehow quicker. He is an outsider but I can’t eliminate him at any way. Vettel on the other side is not so good. Only in Bahrain, he had showed his dominance and he is not the perfect driver he was in the end of 2010 and the whole 2011 season. My risky prediction is either Kimi or Hamilton. As for the constructors championship, unless Button finds his form or Lotus bring something extraordinary out of the bag, Red Bull, is going to claim it.

  31. I said after Australia that Hamilton would win the championship and I still believe that today. He’s been driving brilliantly, and the McLaren is back on form. I think Hamilton is in the position to start to dominate the second half of the season a little bit. If he starts doing what he did in 2010 – stringing together podiums with a few wins – he’ll have Alonso within his sights by the last few races of the season.

    I want Alonso to win, and I believe he’s the best driver right now, but Hamilton and McLaren are looking too strong and too confident to ignore. As for Kimi, unfortunately I don’t think he’ll get that breakthrough win this year, while Vettel and Webber will have a continuation of fortunes from the first half of the season – good but not enough to take it all.

  32. Most people are thinking(some are even hoping) that Alonso’s 40 point lead will be erased quickly. They are forgetting that the Ferrari is very strong now, and that Alonso has been there done that- he has previously won championships while being ahead, and not chasing it. His recent poor weekends have been as bad as fifth. Also, I think that neither McLaren nor RBR will be able to rise so far above the other cars so as to overhaul Alonso’s lead. Lotus have a good chance to do that with their “the device” but they aren’t a team with the experience or expertise to win. I think it is Alonso’s to lose.

  33. I think it’s Alonso & Ferrari’s WC to loose as far the DWC is concern & with recent form I think may be Lotus grab up the CWC.

  34. I was one of the 11%, that will probably regret their choice before the end of the season.

  35. I tihnk it’s fair to say that it’s only the current top 5 that will challenge for the title. Jenson is surely out of it now, Grosjean and Rosberg shouldnt really be fancying their chances either realistically.

    I would expect it to be Alonso. He’s a brute force this year. He’s led the title more times than any other this season (which counts for nothing, I know) and just seems to be having the time of his life at the moment. If it isnt Alonso, I just wonder if Kimi has what it takes to slip in at the last. He’ll need a couple of race wins to boost his chances and give the title any credibility, but we know he has what it takes. The question remains is does the car? I think Belgium will be indicative of things to come.

    As for the constructors, I cant see Red Bull chucking this one away. It could happen. Mclaren appear to be getting back to grips with their car and Lotus are scoring big points. Ferrari havent a hope in hell of the title this year given that only one of their drivers as actually contributing anything noteworthy. They need to drop Massa, cut their loses and get another driver to grips with the team and car before next season. I’m sure Perez has his phone on, go on Luca and Stefanio, you’ve nothing to lose…

  36. It will be Hamilton and Raikonen who will battle it out simply because these two has the most skill of the grid, Alonso is not that great as people seems to think, Alonso has been lucky the whole first half

    1. Hater’s gon hate.

  37. Sorry but Hamilton is not renewing with Mclaren deadline is been reach, in which case button gets to call the shots on development and setup and therefore frustrated Hamilton will get his crashing title back from Maldonado, wish Kimi second but tough call with webber vettel. Alonso will win if Sauber, mercedes and Williams take a few big points from them. Or maybe I’m wrong a Button really wins 5 of 9 !

    1. McLaren want the WDC & WCC this year if they can. While they are still in the fight they won’t want to jeopardize that, it’s too much money and prestige for them to just think to just wait and hope for next year, that’s not how the team works.

      And remember, in HAM’s current contract he still has to leave the trophies with McLaren ;-)

  38. Alonso in great position but emphasis should be IMO on the car. If Ferrari is 4th fastest Alonso cannot win. Want anybody but Vettel to win.

  39. Its simple. It will be 2007 all over again..The three greats will fight it out between themselves…

    Why not Webber:
    Webbers championship will come to a end as the teams leave Monza because he has always performed bad at Spa and Monza . Secondly Redbull will now start focusing solely on Vettel.

    Why not Vettel:
    Vettel is not fighting only Alonso and Hamilton this time. He has to deal with Raikkonen as well. I dont rate Button and Webber highly.Both are ordinary drivers placed in good cars. Secondly Redbull is not the fastest car.

    Why Hamilton:
    I think Mclaren will be the best car of the second half and Lotus there abouts. Hamilton can use it to the best affect.

    Why Raikkonen:
    He has been the most consistant of all secondly he is one with strongest head and racecraft,

    Why Alonso:
    He wont give up no matter how bad the car performs .

    My assumption is that the Mclaren will be the clear fastest car of the 2nd half. If the Redbull is fastest, Vettel will win the championship no matter whats other do..

  40. Carlito's way
    27th August 2012, 23:38

    If Alonso wins the championship this year it guarantees his name among the greatest ever drivers. Not just because it would be his third world championship but because of the manner with which he will have achieved. Driving not the best car on the grid, extracting the absolute maximum of the car, team and himself.

    1. I agree with this, I am seriously not an Alonso fan, but I have to respect his driving, and if he does win the title this year, with a clearky inferior car, it will go down in the books as one of the greatest achievments. Best comparison I can think of is prost in …86? When Mnsel and Piquet in the wiliams were clearly faster, but he still took the title. And that wa sonly against 2 better cars, the Williams’, Alonso will have beaten 3 superior teams! if he pulls it of

  41. Thing about Lotus, is not just that Super-DRS, they already had a quick car prior to that. They just didn’t get the weekend right to get a win. Would be interesting to see how big the advantage will be(if any) when they get the weekend right and benefit from Super-DRS.

  42. No reason to suspect Alonso will falter in the second half. The constructors is the one to watch because both McLaren and Lotus are close enough to Red Bull to pull it off, and both are showing the form to be in the hunt. But having said that, I don’t see Red Bull stubbing their toes either, so they will likely win it. Ferrari, of course, is out of the constructors since they only have 1 1/2 drivers.

    1. You forgot Massa that should count for another 1/5

  43. I think at the moment Alonso is favorite but Lewis is in such good form and Mclaren have improved and showed good pace in the last 2 races. So Mclaren’s on the right track development wise for the rest of the year. I would say it is 60-40 between Alonso and Hamilton but i have a feeling Hamilton will win more races this year and will take the title.

  44. It’s incredible how many times Sebastian Vettel has to prove himself to be considered one of the all time greats. And I really hope when he wins his thrid title in a row, already being the youngest champions and two-time champion, and thus finishing another season in the Top 2 since joining Red Bull racing, people will finally stop saying that it was due to the car.
    It will be Vettel, and still he won’t get the recognition he deserves. It should be recognition enough beating Hamilton and Alonso in a season like this.

  45. The constructors is a an easy way. There is no stronger team effort than that of Red Bull. They score consistently and rarely succumb to reliability issues.

    The drivers is a little harder but I’m going to go with Alonso. He’s managed to both score big points when perhaps the pace wasn’t there and still bag points when it was. He’s the current championship leader with over half the season gone. There is no reason to doubt him and little reason to get excited about anyone else. Hamilton will make it hard for him, he looked very good in Hungary and Germany but something tells me Ferrari will manage to keep a cooler head and Hamilton may have his proverbial rear-view mirrors full of Red Bull.

  46. The drivers champioship is going to be a dramatic last race thriller
    If lotus can keep up the development, raikkonen is a dark horse
    but my gut feeling is that alonso is going to win this year, and why not he is the best driver and usually the best athlete in sport wins
    as for the WDC its a no brainer that Red Bull will win it
    the other top teams lack an inconsistent 2nd driver
    eg massa,button and grosjean whereas redbull have 2 consistent drivers webber and vettel

  47. It can be anyone in the top five.

    If I had to bet my money on something, I’d bet it for Alonso not winning the WDC. 3 out of 4 wins, what’s been the common factor with Alonso’s victories (either in Q3 or R)? Rain. Is it likely that it’s gonna rain in most of the 9 races left? No. Ferrari might be the weakest car in the top four (impossible to tell for sure) and, if so, it will be difficult for Alonso to hold up for much longer.

    1. Well may rain on the first one ….

  48. William Brierty
    28th August 2012, 22:38

    I have no idea why everyone is harping on about Hamilton and the championship this year. He won the last race. McLaren looked fast at the last race. That’s it. Adrian Newey and Pat Fry have had five weeks to scratch their heads, so don’t be surprised if Red Bull or Ferrari rock up at Spa as the fastest team. Because the development race has been so chaotic this year, the driver that can score highly without the fastest car, Alonso, will enter the final phase of the year with an advantage. When I refer to the final stage of the year, I mean the end of the development race when the fastest car finally emerges while the teams start on the 2013 cars. I suspect that car will be the Red Bull (it was in ’09, ’10, ’11) but by then I suspect that Alonso will be out of reach in the WDC.

  49. i think fernando will do it, by a slim margin. red bull will take the constructors’, not so slim margin for them

  50. I voted Vettel, although I hope Alonso, beacuse he is in the best car and has proven he can win titles.

  51. I always like to support the underdogs.. So Raikkonen for me is the guy I want to win..
    But having said that, I don’t think he will.. Not this year, anyway.. 2013 looks like Raikkonen’s year if Lotus can replicate the kind of performance we’ve seen from the E20.. I’d be hard pushed to say anyone other than Alonso at the moment, the way he’s handled this year, considering how close it’s been and how bad that Ferrari started off as, is just incredible.. Malaysia could be one of those races people talk about as realising how impressive Alonso and Ferrari can be…

  52. I believe that Lewis will win as McLaren will furnish him with the development needed in the 2nd half of 2012. McLaren had the problem earlier and still has, that of solving Jenson’s ‘no grip’ tire woos and this hampered their developing the car. It wasn’t until the car was obviously slow for, both drivers, in the European and Brithish rounds, that they realised that solving Jenson’s issue isn’t going to make the car faster, hence their gains in Germany and Hungary. Meanwhile, the other constructors were full steam on development. Mclaren will out develop and gain more till the end of 2012, than the others. It will be Lewis’ WDC.

  53. Realistically most need to win two races to get even with Alonso, and then one more to compensate for Alonso’s same 3 races, where he has to score not many points to make this work.
    If Alonso wins one more then they need a fourth one, or just about a third or half of remaining points, who can do this ? Most achieve 2 wins in more than half season I can’t see nobody winning more than 2 of remaining races. For Button group is winning 4 races so even less likely.
    What I see is a fierce and more interesting WCC but I guess Ferrari can settle WDC then.

  54. I voted for Alonso and Red Bull.

    F1 Racing magazine has been doing a poll like this after every race since earlier on in the season and I have always voted Alonso for the WDC and Red Bull for the WCC there and nothing has happened to change my mind.

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