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Formula 1 breakdown statistics: do mistakes decide the World Cup?

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B at the Belgian GP are the winner Lewis Hamilton and his tailor Mark Webber came a little closer to the world title. Her pursuers Sebastian Vettel, Fernando Alonso and Jenson Button wrote nulls. Vettel and Alonso have to chalk mistakes, Button can see himself as a victim. Which doesn't help him with the score either. There is no bonus for that.

Mark Webber with three rough blunders

A look at the World Cup table brings revealing facts to the table. The four-time season winner Mark Webber recorded only one clear lap in 13 races, four results with a single-digit point gain, but seven podium places. The crash in Valencia is the responsibility of the Australian. In Melbourne and Shanghai he lost better placements through collisions and sloppy approaching the pit when changing tires. So three blunders for the World Cup runner-up.

He was spared more defects than his teammate. A gearbox change in Montreal cost five places on the grid, a problem with the oil supply in Hockenheim possibly a better position in the race, the clutch problems in Spa cost a few positions at the start. Webber would have lost against Hamilton in Belgium even if he had won the sprint into the first corner. The McLaren would have caught him on the long uphill straight at the latest. Under ideal conditions, the Australian would now have 35 points more on the account.

Lewis Hamilton with a small margin of error

Lewis Hamilton could just as well count. The 2008 world champion has two zero points on his account. Only twice were there less than ten points. Like Webber, he was on the podium seven times. The failures in Barcelona and Budapest had technical causes. The poor starting position in Melbourne, which ultimately resulted in a sixth place, was partly due to Hamilton himself. The fact that Webber pushed him off the track may have cost him third place.

Otherwise the Englishman has nothing to blame. Hamilton's slip at Spa was without consequences. Just like the penalty for overtaking the safety car in Valencia. That is the luck of the efficient, which Michael Schumacher often had in his Ferrari days. The low error rate makes Hamilton rightly at the top of the World Cup.

Jenson Button with a wait-and-see tactic

Jenson Button came away empty-handed twice and he has three results outside the top five. On the credit sidethere are two wins and five podiums. Apart from a few minor slip-ups, the defending champion has not made any mistakes in the race. He can only be reproached for not being as consistent in a duel as his teammate. But maybe Buttons' wait-and-see tactic has brought one or the other point that would otherwise have been sunk in the gravel bed.

The failure in Monte Carlo was the result of the forgetfulness of a mechanic who did not remove the radiator cover before the start. The collision in Spa came from Vettel. Buttons mishaps happen during training. In Malaysia, England and Hungary he started outside the top ten and paid for it with small points. Maximum chargeable loss: 30 points.

Vettel pays for mistakes and technical bad luck

Sebastian Vettel has already gone home empty-handed three times. Two times there was a points diet, six times a podium, including two wins. So more applies to him than to any other Hopp or Top. The Heppenheimer has to chalk two of the three clear rounds himself, even if Mark Webber is complicit in the collision in Istanbul. You have to come to terms with teammates better. Vettel paid for the mistake in the safety car phase in Budapest with a third place. A victory was within reach.

The pile-ups with webber and button clearly show that Vettel is sometimes still too impatient. Being able to wait is also an art. Age is definitely an advantage. Hamilton often wants too early too, but this year he always got away with it when he came into contact with the enemy with Vettel in Valencia and Silverstone. Vettel is less lucky. He paid bitterly at Silverstone for Hamilton slitting his rear tire. In the end, only a seventh place came out of it.

In Bahrain, Australia, Spain and Canada the technology played a trick on the third place in the World Cup. And who knows where Vettel would have ended up in Hockenheim if the clutch hadn't been dirty, which gave the Ferrari driver the opportunity to overtake him at the start. Even with careful calculations, at least 100 meters fell by the wayside. It is almost a miracle that Vettel is only 31 points behind Hamilton with so many bankruptcies, bad luck and breakdowns. But it also shows that the chances for the title are still intact if the last six races go according to plan.

Alonso with an unusually high error rate

Vettel's slip can still be excused with inexperience by Fernando Alonso are incomprehensible. Like Vettel, the two-time ex-world champion has three clear rounds, plus three results with less than ten points. There are also lots of blunders that you don't expect from a man of his class. Alonso can only do nothing for the engine failure in Malaysia. For this he has to take responsibility for the early start in Shanghai, for the training crash in Monte Carlo, for the shortening of the routesubsequent drive-through penalty in Silverstone and take over the accident in Spa.

Alonso was a victim in the starting collision in Melbourne. Button had pushed him. In Montreal, two backbenchers cost him the victory because they didn't look in the rearview mirror. In Valencia, the Spaniard was in the wrong place at the wrong time during the safety car phase. So bad luck. Everything together cost at least 50 points.

Who makes the fewest mistakes in the final?

The analysis of the five World Cup candidates clearly shows that Hamilton and Webber have the season with the fewest Mishaps and mistakes. The opposite are Vettel and Alonso. Button hangs in the middle. The Englishman has lacked speed since the British GP. So the last six races could be about the same question as the first 13: Who makes the fewest mistakes? Which team has the fewest breakdowns?

Fernando Alonso doesn't believe that the error rate will decide the fight for the title: 'It depends on which race track suits which car and for whom the rest of the program is best.' That would be with the exception of Monza Red Bull. Mark Webber brings the factor of fate into play: 'Whoever wants to win the World Cup also needs the necessary amount of luck. And not only the luck for which you are responsible.' The Australian puts the key to the title in a nutshell: 'If you beat Hamilton, you're good to go.'


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