October 21, 2007
Then Hamilton's car broke. The Legendary Announce Team almost immediately diagnosed the problem as the automatic clutch on the McLaren, and while he frantically tried to engage the fail-safe mechanisim that'd let him get on with the race (though at slightly reduced capability), he fell all the way back to 18th.
Meanwhile, the two Ferraris rocketed off into the distance. HWMNBN was third, but was never close to catching either of them. All that was left was figuring how Ferrari would get Kimi past Massa for the lead, and would Hamilton manage to haul himself up to fifth, in which case he'd still win the DC.
In the second round of pitstops, Ferrari brought Massa in a couple of laps early, allowing Kimi to rip off two very fast laps before HIS pitstop. When he came back out, he had gone from a few seconds behind Massa to less than a second ahead. Meanwhile, Lewis slowly dragged himself up to seventh, but it was late and he was 20 seconds behind sixth.
When the race ended, the longest of long-shots, Kimi Raikkonen, had managed to come from seven points behind in the DC to win the championship by the slimmest of margins: one point.
*UTTER DEJECTION: There's no way that Lewis Hamilton could be feeling anything other than horrible right now. He had the championship wrapped up, and two mistakes in two races cost him the ultimate prize. In China, he beached his car in the smallest graveltrap of the season. In Brazil, he ran wide while needlessly racing his 'teammate', grinding his car over a curb, which may have caused the damage that caused his electronic clutch system to fail. In replays, pieces of his car are seen flying off; perhaps the shaking and rattling made a connection come loose. Rookie mistakes cost him the most important prize in motorsports.
1) Kimi Raikkonen, Ferrari - 110 points
2) Lewis Hamilton, McLaren - 109 points (tiebreaker)
3) HWMNBN, McLaren - 109 points
*TEAM OF THE RACE: Ferrari. 1-2 on the podium, nearly forty seconds ahead of third place, and dual championship victories, Constructor's and Driver's. Not to sound repetitive, but what more can you ask for from a team?
*MOVE OF THE RACE: On lap 61, Nick Heidfeld is 4th, Nico Rosberg is 5th, and Robert Kubica is 6th. Rosberg makes a move inside Heidfeld, who barely moves until the last instant. Both drivers wind up losing just a little bit of grip on braking, and slide wide... and Kubica blows the doors off of both of them, jumping from 6th to 4th in one sweet move. Honorable Mention goes to... Robert Kubica, for his muscular pass of Mark Webber at turn 1 of lap 8.
*MOOOOOOO-OOOVE OF THE RACE: Sometimes even the best drivers in the world have sub-optimal days, like Lewis Hamilton. Then there are those drivers who would LOVE to have a sub-optimal day, because it would make their race better. It's those wretched racers that the Mooo-oove was created for, and today, we're pleased to present the MotR to a very deserving recipient: Renault's Giancarlo Fisichella. Last year, we were amazed that Renault would willingly name Fisi their number-one driver, and he didn't disappoint; finishing with 21 points, NINE behind his teammate, the rookie Heikki Kovaleinieninnie. Ah, but today was was the true low point of his season. On lap two Fisi ran wide and rolled off-track. Not bothering to check around him, he blithely drives back onto the asphalt, right in front of the fast-moving Spyker (welllll...) of Sakon Yamamoto. The result?
*DRIVER QUOTES OF THE RACE:
"MRMBMML MRMMMBLBLBBM RMMMBLM!!!" - Kimi Raikkonen
"There'd better be a lot extra in my pay envelope this week." - Felipe Massa
"At least that punk didn't win it." - HWMNBN
"I have no idea how I ended up here. I thought I was 5th." - Nico Rosberg
"Next year. Next year. At least I got the Move of the Race... AND the Honorable Mention." - Robert Kubica
"Another lonely race." - Grizzly Nick Heidfeld
"I am still quite happy. To have come from GP2, who would have thought I'd be number two in my first season in Formula One? I will go into next season with my head held high and I know we will do a better job next year and come back even stronger." - Lewis Hamilton
"Was I ever on TV today? Even when Hamilton passed me for seventh, I was in the pits." - Jarno Trulli
"Pants. Want an autograph? I didn't think so." - David Coulthard's Chin
"So this F1 thing is pretty easy, right? From 19th to 10th in my first race ever... that means I'll finish 1st in my next one!" - Kaz Nakajima (note: someone should tell him...)
"I'll be driving in F1 next year, no worries." - Ralf Schumacher (note: someone should REALLY tell him...)
"Sure, my season dropped away after Montreal, but oh what a season!" - Takuma Sato
"So that's it? It's over? We'll just see about that... where's my earring?" - Vitantonio Liuzzi
"Can you believe I survived the year? I'm the first SuperAguri driver not named 'Takuma' to last more than nine races." - Ant Davidson
"Oops." - Adrian Sutil
"Lump go boom." - Rubens Barrichello
"AIEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!" - Heikki Kovaleinenennninnie
"I don't remember what happened to me. Why did I end up 37 laps back again?" - Sebastian Vettel
"Another race, another retirement. That about sums it up for our season, yep." - Jenson Button
"I was in bloody fifth when the car broke AGAIN. I tell you, we'd be dangerous if we were any good." - Mark Webber
"AIEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!" - Sakon Yamamoto
"How do you say 'AIEEEEEEE!' in Italian?" - Giancarlo Fisichella
And so, the 2007 F1 circus comes to a close with a remarkable result. But fear not, F1 UPDATE! still has another appearance coming up... the 2007 YEAR IN REVIEW, with the year-end awards, to boot. Keep an eye out, and we'll see you soon!
Thanks for sticking around!
Well, if Hamilton couldn't have won, I'm glad Kimi did. I think I actually saw him smile.
At least Alonso didn't win and he came in behind Hamilton. Neener neener.
Posted by: Mallory at October 21, 2007 02:54 PM (BelkO)
Posted by: Buttons at October 23, 2007 01:05 AM (XAGhq)
You'll find, Buttons, that there is a definite hierarchy to the MOOOO-ooove. Any dunderheaded manuever that takes out multiple cars will win over a stupid trick that takes out one car will win over something that actually HURTS someone.
We're cruel, but not sadists here at F1 UPDATE!. If the two mechanics hadn't've been wheeled off on gurneys, then Kaz Nakajima almost certainly would have won.
But even with that, I'm not sure. After all, Fisi acting like Spyker's very own launching pad was pretty spectacular.
Posted by: Wonderduck at October 23, 2007 08:19 PM (DcSb+)
Posted by: Buttons at October 25, 2007 05:33 PM (VjS5e)
Posted by: Wonderduck at October 25, 2007 07:47 PM (UdB9M)
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