• Home
  • formula-1
  • Six races, six winners - who is actually the best?

Six races, six winners - who is actually the best?

Six races, six winners
Subscriptions & booklets

E in record fell in 2012 already. There have never been six different winners in six races. A second one is at least in danger. In 1982 eleven drivers, seven teams and four engine manufacturers shared the 16 victories (see table). In the end, world champions were won by a driver and a team who had only won one Grand Prix: Keke Rosberg in Williams. With the ridiculously low yield of 44 points. So 2.75 counters per start. That was not even a fourth place on average back then.

This year Fernando Alonso leads the table with 76 points after six races. That is an average of 12.66 points per Grand Prix. So a little better than fourth place. So the two years certainly have parallels. At that time, the technical regulations had been in effect since 1978. Only in the area of ​​aprons was there something new every year. Once movable, once rigid, once with a minimum distance to the ground, once without.

Formula 1 with stable rules - like 1982

Roughly comparable to today's exhaust situation. In 1982, the Formula 1 engineers had optimized the ground effect car principle over five years. In 2012 we are in the fourth year of the 2009 rule reform. The stability inevitably leads to the fact that the cars align. Expensive developments such as blowing the diffuser, extreme engine maps and flexible front wings were banned. That gave the teams two seconds that could not afford this expensive fun or only drove with a standard version.

In 1982 there were two decisive differences. First, the duel between turbo and vacuum cleaner. Even within the turbo fraction, there were power differences of up to 50 hp. In the end, a Cosworth-powered car won because the good old naturally aspirated V8 engine had to live with a 150 hp deficit, but was much more reliable. Goodyear fought Michelin. The two tire manufacturers shared the victories equally. Eight per brand.

Nevertheless, there was confusion in 1982. Because there was an identical starting point. The seven winning cars were roughly on a comparable aerodynamic level. Depending on the route, the type of engine or the tire brand decided who was ahead. Today the engines play a subordinate role. And apart from fluctuations in quality, the tires are the same for everyone. The vehicle setup, theDriver and external conditions.

An example. Lotus is nowhere really bad, but nowhere is it really good either. The car brings the tires to work, depending on the rubber compound, only in a tiny window. The higher the temperature, the easier it is. Probably the best all-rounder, the Lotus E20 is easy to drive and easy to set up, but it's not the best car in most conditions. That's why Kimi Räikkönen and Romain Grosjean always swim somehow in the front field without landing a win. The team from Enstone must either hope for a summer of the century or solve its tire problem.

Sauber and Williams technically top-class

GPS measurements in Barcelona brought an amazing insight. The aerodynamically best cars in the field are the Sauber C31 and the Williams FW34. The two were the fastest in turns 3 and 9 without giving up in the other sections. Williams has already proven in Spain that you can win races. Sauber was just about to do it in Malaysia.

Both teams didn't make enough of their opportunities. We're quick to get to the driver issue. In Monte Carlo, World Cup points were negligently lost in both cases. With Fernando Alonso, Sebastian Vettel or Lewis Hamilton in the cockpit, a Williams or Sauber would probably lead the World Cup.

Going it alone, however, would be unlikely. The qualities of the cars are too different for that. Aerodynamics isn't everything. You also need a good mechanical grip. Red Bull is at the forefront of the league. The defending champions used their two chances, which the track characteristics of Bahrain and Monaco played into their hands, with two wins.

Red Bull critical of the vote

But Mark Webber and Sebastian Vettel balance on a very fine line. In contrast to the Lotus, Sauber or Williams, the Red Bull RB8 only works in a very narrow voting window. The Red Bull reacts particularly critically to changes in ground clearance. Vettel caught this in Bahrain and Webber in Monaco. The other had no chance.

McLaren is a mystery to everyone. In the first three races, everyone in the paddock agreed that the McLaren MP4-27 is the best car in the field. 'A car without weaknesses,' said Jenson Button at the time. He would see it differently today. Something went wrong somewhere in the development of the car after the GP China.

The McLaren engineers themselves should know that best. 'We have a suspicion,' revealed Button in Monte Carlo. McLaren may score an own goal with its aggressive development policies. As long as tires are such a big unknown, you should first understand your car before introducing new parts.

Mercedes with weaknesses in fast corners

Mercedes has in Shanghai and MonteCarlo made a strong figure. The car's strengths lie in the slow corners and on the straights. In the fast corners, the Silver Arrow still has to gain. The latest aerodynamic interventions on the front wing, the nose, the side pods and in the rear are aimed in this direction. The answer as to whether the modifications have worked will not be available until Silverstone.

Montreal and Valencia have a stop-and-go character. So good for Mercedes. The DRS trick gives them two or three tenths in the qualification. That doesn't sound like much, but in such a densely packed field it is a gift that can become a match winner if the starting position is decisive. Michael Schumacher or Nico Rosberg would probably have won from pole position in Monaco. A chance was lost here.

At Schumacher, the technology has already failed three times and the pit crew once. That can be a nasty trap in a year like this. Let's remember 1982. Keke Rosberg became world champion through Constance, not with the highest number of wins. He finished in the points in ten of the 16 races. More than anyone else.

Mark Webber believes this story can repeat itself: 'You could very well become world champions with just three wins this year. The key is to score as often as you can and the chances to use what is offered to you. ' In other words: If a victory is on the road, you have to grab it.

Ferrari is another winning car

The champion is Fernando Alonso. And that's why he's at the top of the World Cup. Only he and Hamilton finished in all races. Alonso did a great job of getting through the first four races. In those, his Ferrari was at best mediocre. A radical cure has catapulted the F2012 into the group of seven cars that can win a race under the right conditions.

The weak points of top speed and traction have not yet been completely eliminated, but they are much less pronounced. That shows the sixth place of Felipe Massa in Monte Carlo. Driving at the limit is no longer a ride on the razor blade. In the reliability discipline, the Ferrari is apparently bulletproof. They are among the fastest when it comes to pit stops.

Strategy errors like last weekend happen to other teams too. McLaren has major deficits there. The conclusion is therefore: With Alonso in the cockpit, Ferrari is the safest World Cup tip at the moment.


Leave a reply

Name *