Predictions – who will be the 2012 F1 world champion?

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    It’s all about the car IMO. All of the top 5 teams each have at least one championship contender.

    RBR – Vettel, of course. I can’t see Webber ever returning to his 2010 form.
    McLaren – Both Button and Hamilton definitely have the potential to fight for the title (although for different reasons).
    Ferrari – Alonso is a definite championship contender, if his 2010&2011 form is any indication.
    Mercedes – Gonna go against what most people are saying and suggest Schumacher. He’s been slowly returning to form and he seems to love the 2012 tyres. If anything, I can’t see Rosberg beating him this year.
    Lotus – Kimi, of course, but he’ll need to have a great car if he’s to really challenge for the title. I don’t think one year is going to be enough for him to return to his old form.

    Ideally I’d have Massa and Hamilton fight it out once more, with Vettel in 3rd, but you know that’s never going to happen.


    I would love to see Button get a second championship title :)


    EDIT : Posted on the wrong thread!

    It’s way too early to predict, but I see Vettel being favourite again, followed closely by Hamilton and maybe Alonso if Ferrrari get their act together

    Stephen Jones

    Captain Webs better win it!

    my money’s on Vettel though.. or Alonso, that Ferrari doesn’t look too bad


    @Bobdredds @ShaneB12345678910 To be honest I don’t think Melbourne is a very good benchmark of pace – Melbourne as a track layout doesn’t seem to be representative of most tracks of the year. Having said that, in a lot of the recent years the Melbourne winner has won the championship – so yeah.


    raymondu999 If Melbourne isn’t a very good benchmark then the first test is completely irrelevant.:) But by then we will have a good idea of who’s got potential and what innovations thr respective teams are bringing. Understanding the innovations, how much speed they bring and how hard/easy they are to copy will be a determining factor. Interesting to note that the RRA is no longer in place as far as I know apart from a declaration from teams that they support the idea in principal. Lovely words that effectively mean that there is no restriction on spending. With this being a transition year before the new concorde aggreement is signed off I expect the top teams to exploit the situation and for the smaller teams to cry foul. Ferrari and RB have already positioned themselves amongst others to exploit the situation well in advance of the season by leaving FOTA. This was forward thinking from those teams who have plenty of money. Once FOTA neutralised Max it was no longer a part of the ambition of those teams. With no clear fixed aggreement there is nothing to stop them. All is fair in love, war and F1.


    @Bobdredds I never said anything about the tests. The tracks are 100% unreliable to judge the pecking order. But a track like Sepang or Barcelona would be a much better barometer.

    RRA is still in force – RRA was started by FOTA; but it has nothing to do with FOTA membership. It’s a contract that is legally binding outside of FOTA.


    raymondu999 My apologies for the confusion, I agree with you and the reference to the tests was more a comment on the thread and aimed at nobody in particular and was more an observation. Thank you for your point on the RRA, I wasn’t sure of the exact position. But last season RB were accused of exceeding agreed limits yet no satisfactory way was found to properly assess that. As far as I am aware that situation still stands. Without that and proper and agreed terms for policing it and applying penalties the current RRA is meaningless IMHO.
    Monetry fines to the top teams are pointless and they would bankrupt smaller teams so that method is out. It’s my guess the top teams will fight any effort to apply penalties that removes points, wins or any form of exclusion and I would be willing to bet that BE will support them.
    At the time the current RRA was introduced it was a compromise and FOTA maintained it could be controlled through its members. Too much wishful thinking and not enough commitment as compromises usually are.


    Nothing was ever proved of that though – and Whitmarsh also came out and said that there has been no evidence of any wrongdoing by Red Bull with regards to the RRA. He said he just thought it was the normal paddock paranoia because Red Bull were so quick.


    Maybe, but without specific aggreement over penalties it may as well not be there. Logically those that have money will have spent the absolute limit and will have spent “well”. The top teams wield a lot of economic clout and can easily get lower prices on one item and pay a bit more in other F1 unrelated areas. Can you really police that without creating a one stop shop which no one would want IMO.


    Of course. But when has any industry not favored good cost management?

    The part that I personally don’t understand is how do they police subsidiary outsourcing? For example – Red Bull Racing is the corporate arm of the Red Bull F1 team. But the cars aren’t designed by Red Bull Racing. They’re designed by Red Bull TECHNOLOGY. What’s stopping them from selling upgrade packages to Red Bull Racing at a pound apiece? I wonder – @keithcollantine would you happen to know how the mechanics of that works out?


    I know I´m gonna get flamed for this BUT here goes:

    First of all, PLEASE get off the Vettel fanboy wagon! The kid is good but he is waaaaaaaaay back from being a great driver! The real champion is the RB7.

    Second: Webber was “eclipsed” by Vettel in 2011 because he didn´t get the support Vettel got. Dieter M. has a “boner” for Vettel and he didn´t want Mark casting a big shadow on his boy as he did in 2010. They favoured Vettel over Mark in 2010 even though Mark had the most obvious option for WDC. And if you guys ever watch the 2011 F1 official season review video, you can hear Vettel “bitch” over the radio to “be wise” when Webber had fresher rubber and was clearly faster and could´ve easily have gotten past Vettel for P2 in the “maintain the gap Mark” race… And in Brazil, it was OBVIOUS that they gave mark that race…. ANYBODY that really knows F1 knows this! Gearbox failure my ass… When a gearbox fails it FAILS… it doesn´t give you hints it´ll fail… Look at Hamilton, his gearbox was failing and it failed completely… And LEWIS reported it was failing, NOT the PIT WALL!!!

    Even Vettel is “bummed out” about the bann on blown diffusers…. why?? There goes his edge on the rest of the field… simple as that!!!

    Now… Back on subject… Predictions…. Well, I´m gonna be objective about this even though I´m a Ferrari fan BUT, taking into consideration that this is all a big “show”, you need the BIGGEST team in order to take down the “biggest” (and I really mean the ” ” because in MHO, he is not the biggest or greatest talent on the grid) or “greatest” talent on the grid right now… therefore… I trully believe that this is Ferrari´s year… Why? Because they have covered every single aspect in the team in which they were failing…. Example: They never figured out how to warm up the “hard” tyres and their solution was to bring the main guy from Bridgestone onboard to help them figure out the Pirreli tyres… Ferrari have always been more conservative and this year they threw that out the window with the new suspension, new wheel provider with OZ in order to help warm up the tyres, etc… AND they have, IMHO the best and most complete driver in Fernando Alonso. No I´m not from Spain… I live in Spain but I´m from Honduras so national pride doesn´t influence my opinion. So trying to make my point short, although I think it´s a bit late for that, I would Predict the following:
    1.- Fernando Alonso (Fast(Not super fast but, fast), calculating and he KNOWS when to take risks and when not to. He also only needs the 3rd best car on the grid in order to take the fight to the top! 2010 ought to prove this point.)
    2.- Lewis Hamilton (I hated his guts but I can recognize talent when i see it and this guy is awesome! Probably the only driver able to take the fight to Alonso right now! He just needs to cool down a bit in key moments! I also believe he is FAR SUPERIOR THAN BUTTON! Fact!!)
    3.- Kimi Raikkonen (If the Lotus is up there and I believe it will be!) / S. Vettel (given that the RB8 delivers as the RB7 did.)
    4.- Jenson Button (I don´t particularly like him because I feel he is another of Bernie´s golden boys)
    5.- Mark Webber (I doubt that RB will support him or let him really RACE but I like his style)
    6.- Michael Schumacher (Never count him out of a fight… Lets just hope he gets a decent car this year)
    7.- MAYBE and just MAYBE, Nico Rossbergh (Same reason as Michael, ONLY IF he gets a decent car!)

    Be gentle with the replys guys… If somebody agrees with me, please let me know!


    To be honest; the only people who still don’t appreciate that Vettel is one hell of a talent should probably be classed as a hater already


    @raymondu999 Seriously, I´m not hating… The kid is GOOD but there is no way in hell Webber lost HIS speed over the winter break between the 2010 and 2011 season!

    Vettel´s TRUE pace is what he showed in 2010… Definitely WDC material, yet… not as DOMINTATING… 2011 was just ridiculous… and I hated IT not HIM! I have nothing against the kid… I just hate how they are gloryfying him… he is a “bread” character… just listen to what Bernie says about the kid in this interview and keep in mind it´s before Vettel wins his championships…


    Sorry If I´m braking a rule by posting that link….


    In my honest opinion – Webber never had any speed over Vettel. The only time he outpaced Vettel was before throttle mappings; when driving with an EBD required a special driving technique. Vettel never caught on to that technique while Webber was visibly changing the driving line – taking it to very extreme measures – to use it. Check out the way he drives in Monza 2010. The way he brakes for Parabolica is absolutely ludicrous; if you didn’t realize what he was actually doing. It was just that Vettel never caught on to how to maximise a non-engine-mapped EBD. That was really just about the only advantage in my opinion.

    Also; the Vettel of 2011 is a far stronger character than the Vettel of years before that. To not recognise that fact is just foolish.

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