I have become quite an enthusiast in these “drivers championships without misfortunes” topics. So I’d like to try one on the yet going on season, 2012, myself. And while I know misfortunes are a part of the sport, this post is for pure interest and entertainment. Misfortunes are something a driver cannot do anything to stop from happening. It is purely bad luck. So, let’s review all the misfortunes of the top five drivers in the championship:
Had Ferrari not screwed up Alonso’s strategy in Canada a win was virtually in the bag. Fernando was 14.8 seconds ahead of Hamilton after his stop, and a normal stop at Montreal costs about 14 seconds, plus knowing the Ferrari pit crew you can easily subtract another second off that. And even if he didn’t come out ahead, which would be very unlikely, he had an extra set of option tyres saved up; meaning he’d most likely have won either way.
Vettel lost what probably would have been a win in Europe, and P5 in Malaysia. Remember, Webber was leading Vettel in Malaysia. The only reason to why Vettel was ahead to begin with was because Mark had a very slow stop for Inters that dropped him behind Seb and Kimi. Raikkonen was visibly holding up Webber, this allowed Vettel to pull away. Once Webber jumped Raikkonen during the seconds pit-stop stint, he was suddenly quicker than Vettel and Hamilton; and he was banging in fastest laps. That’s all you need to know.
Also, on another note; unlike Alonso, Vettel would not have done better than fourth even if he was on the same strategy as Hamilton. He was only twelve seconds ahead of Grosjean, who finished a mere 4.48 seconds behind Hamilton. So even if Vettel pit at that time, he’d be behind the Lotus and looking at the pace of Grosjean near the end of the race I don’t think he would have passed him either.
Webber lost out quite badly in Spain. Had Webber’s engineer had sent him out again in Q2 at Catalunya, he would have outqualified Vettel again, he would have had a handy haul of points, as he was also seriously held up by Hulkenburg that race. While I do not believe he’d have beaten the Lotus’s, P5 was entirely possible.
Hamilton, oh dear, where do I start. He lost 3 points in Australia due a slow stop and the SC ruining his strategy while helping Vettel’s. Lost the lead to Alonso and Perez in Malaysia due yet another slow stop. While not being as quick, I believe he’d at least be able to hold them behind until the track dried up. In China, gearbox penalty in a race he would have certainly beaten Jenson. Would he have beaten Rosberg? Debatable, but I’ll leave it at what it was. Horrible pit work by Mclaren in Bahrain dropped him way down the order when P4 was entirely possible. An easy win in Spain was thrown out the window by Mclaren’s fuel fuss. Hell, he even made the two-stop strategy work in what should have been a four-stop race. I’ve changed my mind about Valencia, even without his (yet another) slow stop I don’t think he would’ve stayed in front of Alonso or Raikkonen, but at least ahead and clear of Maldonado, therefore no crash and 12 points.
Rosberg. Well, I can’t remember him having any bad luck apart from his puncture in Australia. He passed Perez, but was hit from behind by the young Mexican, causing a flat tyre. This dropped him down to order from what should’ve been P6, all the way down to P12. 8 points lost.
So without the top 5 drivers having any misfortunes, how would the championship look like? Note: this is including the net gain these drivers have made from their rivals bad luck just as much as the loss of their own.
1. Lewis Hamilton – 138
2. Sebastian Vettel – 115
3. Fernando Alonso – 107
4. Mark Webber – 93
5. Nico Rosberg – 75
Hamilton lost a net of 50 points.
Vettel lost a net of 30 points.
Alonso gained a net of 4 points.
Webber lost a net of 2 points.
Rosberg didn’t lose nor gain anything; at the end, it balanced out.