F1: Brazilian Grand Prix Preview & Predictions
This weekend we see the Brazilian Grand Prix and the climax to the 2012 Formula One season. Regardless of what happens on Sunday, this has been an absolutely fantastic season and one of the best in recent years. The Drivers’ championship will be decided in Brazil, and it is of course between Sebastian Vettel and Fernando Alonso, and who will be crowned a three time world champion.
Interlagos is a very famous track and the Brazilian GP is always special with the country producing so many fantastic drivers in the past including, arguably the greatest, Ayrton Senna. This season will see two Brazilians on the grid, Ayrton’s nephew Bruno Senna and Felipe Massa. Massa has been driving well of late and this is a track he loves, and he even has a couple of wins to his name. I expect a strong performance from him this weekend, although in the past three years the weekend has been thoroughly dominated by Red Bull.
The could be a season to end all others; it will also be the last race for Michael Schumacher in an F1 car and also the last race for Lewis Hamilton at McLaren before he makes his move to Mercedes.
Fernando Alonso is 13 points behind Vettel in the championship and will need something special to walk away as champion. This is exactly what Fernando has done all season and with rain currently forecast for the race anything can happen!
Here are the permutations for the title race:
Alonso will win if
- Alonso wins and Vettel finishes 5th or lower
- Alonso finishes 2nd and Vettel finishes 8th or lower
- Alonso finishes 3rd and Vettel finishes 10th or lower
Any other outcome (providing enough laps are completed for full points to be awarded) will mean that Sebastian Vettel will be crowned champion.
When laid out like this, you can see how difficult it is going to be for Alonso to win the championship. The Red Bull is so quick, that without a mechanical problem, puncture, collision, pit stop error or strategy error, the chances of Vettel finishing out of the top 4 are really slim. Webber is always strong around Brazil so should also be able to aid Vettel in both taking points from Alonso and protecting him during the race. Of course it may well rain during the weekend, and that could really play into Alonso’s hands with some of his best performances this season coming in the wet.
Here are my predictions:
- Mark Webber
- Lewis Hamilton
- Fernando Alonso
- Jenson Button
- Felipe Massa
Yes, you did read that correctly, I think Fernando Alonso will become champion on Sunday! I have this gut feeling that Vettel won’t finish the race, be it mechanical failure, collision or driver error I don’t know, but I can just feel it coming. Even if Vettel does not finish, Alonso will still have his hands full finishing 3rd as Mark Webber and both McLaren’s will almost certainly be quicker.
Lewis Hamilton has been in magnificent form recently and has had a car to match his performances, just not the reliability. There has been a change since announcing his move from McLaren; Lewis seems much more relaxed and enjoying the race weekends. I think this is the main reason for his great form, perhaps the pressure has just been released which sees him at his best. It was a toss up between Webber and Hamilton for who I think will win, Webber has a great record in Brazil so that just swayed it for me.
Check back during the week for my Grand Prix and a few season ending special features. Here are all the times you need for this weekend. Don’t miss it!
Qualifying – Green light – 16:00
BBC 1: 15:00 – 17:30
Sky F1: 15:00 – 17:45
Race – Lights out – 16:00
BBC 1: 15:00 – 18:15
Sky F1: 14:30 – 19:15