It all comes down to Interlagos...
The 2012 Formula 1 calender is now coming down to its ultimate stage. The excitement has reached its final level. With a remarkable season undergoing its final laps, the winner is yet to be decided. As people flock around the Autódromo José Carlos Pace circuit, also known as Interlagos, young gods of Formula 1 battle their way to nail biting finishes. Unlike last year when Vettel dominated the Formula 1 calender, this year is a year of uncertainty.
The year started with seven different winners form seven different races, a record in itself. Then Fernando Alonso clinched the top spot in the leadership board with a glorious victory in Spanish Grand Prix, with the former champion Sebastian Vettel retiring out for an alternator failure in the same race. With an impressive win, Alonso had started to wrong the odds of Vettel dominating another season, which had just started with Vettel’s Bahrain victory.
Then came more races, more winners and more disturbances in the leadership table. Until the Singapore Grand Prix, Alonso clearly dominated the tables. But tables are meant to be turned. Post Singapore races saw a massive jump for the 25-year-old German driver. With 6 successive podium finishes out of which 4 were winning laps, Vettel strengthened his post in the table and shook Alonso’s firm title seat to increase the chances of his record making triple world championship title.
But as usual, racing goes down till the last lap. The turn of events in the next races of Abu Dhabi and the United States, again changed the course of the championship crown. Well placed Vettel was brought into range by some excellent driving by Fernando Alonso.
And as we sit down to watch the mega event of Formula 1 in Sao Paulo, one thing is sure, it will be a hell of a show. The capricious track of Brazil always lives upto its reputation. In this track, the grandstands are removed after a race for protecting them from being stolen, advertisement boards have a history of falling on tracks and many more fateful events have occurred , but these events hardly blemish the credibility of this finale track. The decider for titles in many seasons, this race has its own aura.
And indeed, the season’s fate is to be decided in this beautiful state of Brazil. Contenders Fernando Alonso and Sebastian Vettel have a head on collision for the title, with the duo separated by only 13 points. Both are battling to enter into the hall of fame of Formula 1 for winning three Formula 1 championship titles and join the likes of Schumacher, Fangio, Prost, Stewart, Brabham, Lauda, Piquet and Senna, who are considered as legends of Formula 1. Vettel, especially, is battling for a spot in a greater hall of fame for winning three consecutive Grand Prix, a feat achieved only by Schumacher and Fangio. And this is not just the decider for 1st and 2nd spot, but the decider racer for the third spot also, with rivals Kimi Raikkonen and Lewis Hamilton battling their way for the final result’s podium. With 6 world champions in the grid, this race has all it takes to be one of the most exciting races of the calender.
Full of excitement and anticipation, this year’s Sau Paulo promises a season witnessed like the ones of 2010, 2008 and 2007 which saw very close finishes and winners worthy of the champagne bath. Close encounters of Vettel and Alonso go back to 2010 when a sure shot world championship winning race of Alonso was shattered by a strategic fallout by the Ferrari team, and the advantage was taken by the Red Bull squad enabling their prime driver, Vettel to clinch his first world championship title. And the “finale choking” experience of Alonso is not limited to 2010, but 2007 too saw Alonso and Hamilton fight for the championship when Alonso’s present team mate Felipe Massa denied both of them victory by allowing his then team mate Kimi Raikkonen to win the the race, with him finishing second and not quenching Alonso’s thirst for third title win.
But what is the common thing in all these exquisite races ? Interlagos, which according to the famous F1 commentator Steve Slater is,”The track which is a proof that the chaos theory can be applied to Formula One”.