1 World Drivers’ Championship – All drivers
Kimi Raikkonen is runner-up for the second time in three years, having won as many races as champion Fernando Alonso (seven) but failed to score highly enough in other races. Michael Schumacher finished third after a dismal year for Ferrari in which he only won one race – the farcical event in Indianapolis contested by only three teams.
2 World Drivers’ Championship – Battle for the title
The championship protagonists fared conspicuously better than their team mates. Juan Pablo Montoya did take three wins, but missed two races due to an injured shoulder and returned perhaps earlier than he should. In the last five races he posted three DNFs and two wins. Giancarlo Fisichella’s (not shown) opening-round win was a false dawn – he never showed the pace to beat team mate Alonso.
3 World Drivers’ Championship – Points systems 1981-present
The 2003 championship points system, introduced to keep the champinship battle alive for longer, had the opposite effect in 2005. Had the championship been run to ’91-02 points, Raikkonen would still have been able to win the championship after the Brazilian Grand Prix.
4 World Constructors’ Championships – All constructors
Ferrari’s collapse in form dropped them to third and only ahead of Toyota thanks to the 18 points won in Indianapolis. Jordan and Minardi scored all but one of their combined points at United States Grand Prix.
5 World Constructors’ Championships – Battle for the title
The constructor’s championship at least went down to the wire, even if the climactic race was a damp squib.
6 Drivers’ Average Start Positions
Raikkonen’s four 10-place penalties for engine changes seriously hurt his qualifying average and, as a consequence, his race results. Michael Schumacher’s average start position rank of tenth is a testament to his nightmare season (but slightly exaggerated by the two one-off McLaren substitutes at sixth and eighth).
7 Drivers’ Top 3 Qualifying Positions
Nick Heidfeld and Ralf Schumacher’s one-off pole positions were both exposed as low-fuel glory runs – Schumacher’s to please the home Japan crowd and an attempt to put one over Toyota’s arch-rivals Honds in their own backyard. Michael Schumacher’s, in Hungary, was his 64th, bringing him within one of equalling Ayrton Senna’s absolute record for total number of pole positions – but still way short of Senna’s pole hit rate.
8 Drivers’ Average Position Changes and Participations
Tellingly, Raikkonen’s average position improvement per Grand Prix is twice that of Alonso (2.79 to 1.37) reflecting Raikkonen’s repeated qualifying misfortunes. Italians Giancarlo Fisichella and Jarno Trulli usually failed to improve on their qualifying position on race day – Trulli in particular became known for ‘Trulli trains’ of cars lined behind his Toyota, unable to pass.
BAR’s lack of race pace also shows up in that neither of their drivers were able to improve upon their starting positions, on average, on race day.
9 Drivers’ Points per Round and per Finish
Montoya scored only slightly more than half the number of points per race as he did per finish – suggesting that, had he raced in every event and had better luck/reliability, he could have been a third title contender. Fisichella’s points-per-finish record is less than half that of Alonso’s, underlining how poor he fared in comparison.
10 Drivers’ DNFs (totals)
The awesome 75% reliability rate would have been even higher had it not been for the 14 cars that failed to start in Indianapolis.
11 Drivers’ DNFs (by driver)
Takuma Sato picked up two dsiqualifications in a single year – though one wasn’t his fault. Chritisan Albers and Mark Webber finished races without completing a sufficient distance to be classified – both on occasions when they took a long stop to fix a major problem, but continued racing to improve their qualifying slot for the following race.