Sebastian Vettel can win the drivers’ championship this weekend but he’ll need a strong result over Fernando Alonso to do it.
And his Red Bull team are virtually guaranteed to win the constructors’ title for the third year in a row at the Circuit of the Americas.
Alonso and Ferrari cannot win the drivers’ or constructors’ titles this weekend – they have to keep the contest alive until the final round to get their chance. Here’s how the two championships can be decided in the United States Grand Prix.
If Vettel leaves this weekend 25* points or more in front of Alonso, he will be champion. Here’s how that can happen:
- If Vettel wins the race and Alonso finishes fifth or lower, Vettel is champion
- If Vettel finishes second and Alonso finishes ninth or lower, Vettel is champion
- If Vettel finishes third and Alonso finishes eleventh or lower (i.e., fails to score), Vettel is champion
- Any other combination of results will mean the championship will be decided in the next race
However the situation can turn around quite easily. If Alonso wins the race, the only way Vettel can go into the final round ahead on points is by finishing second.
*If the pair end the season tied on points, Vettel will be champion as he will have won the most races.
The only way Red Bull can fail to win the constructors’ championship this weekend is if they have a disastrous race.
The only team that can still beat them to the title is Ferrari, and they need to get both drivers on the podium with one of them winning to stay in the hunt.
- If Ferrari finish one-two, Red Bull must score at least four points to win the title, for which they will need at minimum one car finishing eighth or higher
- If Ferrari finish one-three, Red Bull must score at least one point to win the title, for which they will need at minimum one car finishing tenth or higher
- Any other combination of results will make Red Bull the champions
Over to you
Which championships do you think will be decided this weekend? And who will win them? Have your say in the comments and cast your vote in this poll on the drivers’ championship:
Who will win the 2012 F1 drivers' title?
- Sebastian Vettel (66%)
- Fernando Alonso (34%)
Total Voters: 268
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Image ?é?® Red Bull/Getty images