The 2008 Formula 1 championship fight is going down the wire. Same as last year Lewis Hamilton goes into the final race with 7 points lead. The difference is that this year he has only one rival left and he does not need to fight with his team mate. I would say that on paper this makes Hamilton’s job much easier than in 2007. However we have seen this season on several occasions how unpredictable Formula 1 can be and that anything can happen. So let’s have a look what Lewis Hamilton and Felipe Massa need to do to stand a chance to win the title and what they should not do to help each other.
- If Hamilton finishes 5th or better the title is his no matter what Massa does.
- If Hamilton finishes 6th he needs Massa to finish 2nd or worse
- If Hamilton finishes 7th he needs Massa to finish 2nd or worse
- If Hamilton finishes 8th or worse he needs Massa to finish 3rd or worse
- If Massa wins he needs Hamilton to finish 6th or worse
- If Massa finishes 2nd he needs Hamilton to finish 8th or worse
What happens if there is a tie ?
If Massa and Hamilton finish the season with same points (Massa wins, Hamilton 6th or Massa 2nd, Hamilton 8th) the title would go to Massa as he would have either more wins or more 2nd places to his name (currrently they are tied – see table below).
2008 Formula 1 - Felipe Massa vs Lewis Hamilton
What are the odds Massa can pull it off ?
For me as long as there is a chance, the odds are always 50:50 – he either can or can’t do it. But let’s see what the 2008 results say:
- Massa won and Hamilton finished 6th or worse – happened twice – in Bahrain and France
- Massa finished 2nd and Hamilton finished 8th or worse – hasn’t happened yet this year
- Massa won – happened 5 times – Bahrain, Turkey, France, Europe, Belgium
- Hamilton 6th or worse – happened 5 times – Bahrain, Canada, France, Italy, Japan
- Massa 2nd – happened twice – Spain and China
- Hamilton 8th or worse – happened 4 times – Bahrain, Canada, France, Japan
So, the “perfect result” that Massa would need in Brazil only occured twice this season but Massa has won 29.5 % of 2008 F1 races so far and Hamilton finished 29.5% of 2008 F1 races 6th or worse .
Photo: Daimler Media