Vettel versus Alonso – may the best man win is the consensus

(L to R): Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing and Fernando Alonso (ESP) Ferrari on the podium. Vettel later lost his second place and was demoted to fifth after a controversial overtaking move on Jenson Button (GBR) McLaren. Formula One World Championship, Rd10, German Grand Prix, Race, Hockenheim, Germany, Sunday 22 July 2012.

Sebastian Vettel and Fernando Alonso take centre stage in the final two rounds of the title fight

Nov.16 (GMM) With two rounds left in the 2012 FIA World Formula One Championships, on the eve of the United States Grand Prix the consensus in the paddock is that Sebastian Vettel and Fernando Alonso each deserve to win the 2012 F1 World Drivers’ Championship title, although the grand prix world is split on who will triumph in the end.

A debate has simmered amongst pundits lately about who is the more deserving triple world champion: Ferrari‘s ‘samurai’-style Spaniard Alonso, or back-to-back title winner Vettel, at the wheel of the faster Red Bull.

“They are both giants and I congratulate them both,” F1 legend Niki Lauda is quoted by Spain’s EFE news agency. But Red Bull is half a second faster and that’s the key.”

“For me, in terms of overtaking ability and strategy, they are evenly matched. Alonso has the advantage of more experience. I think Vettel will win the championship but Alonso will not make it easy and will fight to the last breath,” added the great Austrian.

But there are rumblings in the paddock that, although acknowledging Vettel’s advantage, most people in F1 would prefer that Alonso triumphs.

“I don’t think so,” Force India’s Nico Hulkenberg told Sport1. “Sebastian is very popular.”

“I think it’s just the psychological games that are always there in a championship fight. Red Bull is a good team with a good driver and a good crew,” mused Hulkenberg.

The truth is that paddock opinion is split, with Alonso backed by the large contingent of Spanish and Italian media while Vettel is the hope of German and Austrian elements within the paddock while the English language media sit on the fence.

There is also a swathe of opinion that claims that another Vettel triumph will not do TV ratings any good and has the ability to bore viewers in a similar manner that Michael Schumacher’s dominance did a decade ago.

There is also the argument that a Ferrari title, the first since Kimi Raikkonen triumphed in 2007, would be a boost for the sport.

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  • Butterfly

    What a load of BS. How is the “best man” going to win in a car that’s more than half of second off the pace?

    Good job by the Red Bull team, but this is not a head-to-head fight between Alonso and Vettel.

    Alonso wiped the floor with Schumacher, he will eventually do the same with Vettel.

  • alonso_is_slow

    1. Alonso could only win against Schamcher due to Schumi’s engine blow in Japan. Otherwise he was handily beaten despite the fact that he had superior tyres all season. Tyres are the most important factor in F1.

    2.Ferrari has been faster than Red Bull at least half of the season, which is supported by qualifying positions. Alonso was given the fair chance to win. He blew it by crashing into Raikkonen in Japan.

    3. Alonso would never beat Vettel in an equal car. Vettel has not been beaten by any teammate so far, including the ‘teammate-killer’ – called Mark Webber and the multiple series champion Sebastien Bourdais. Alonso on the other hand was beaten by all Nr. 1. teammates including Hamilton and Trulli. Alonso just does not have the speed.

    4. Alonso may look like a good racer this year but it is an illusion. The fact is that he has a car which is much worse in quali than in the race. In the race he usually has the speed of the top cars, but as he starts from lower positions, he is always taking on slower cars in all races. This is just normal.

    Stop whining and face reality.

  • Forza Ferrari


    “Wiped the floor with Schumacher”??? You must be crazy! In 2005 the Bridgestone tyres that Schumacher’s Ferrari had were no competition to the Michelins that Alonso’s Renault had and in 2006 Alonso was very lucky that Schumacher had that engine blow up in Suzuka. So get your facts straight before you talk crap. Alonso is a fantastic driver no doubt about it, but he certainly didn’t “wipe the floor” with Schumacher.

    I would however like it very much, if he would wipe the floor with finger boy. Alonso has been incredible this season and there’s no question that he deserves to win this WDC the most.

  • Butterfly

    @Forza Ferrari:

    In 2006, of course. I know how bad the 2005 Ferrari was – that year it was Kimi vs Alonso. But the next year, he pushed Schumacher to the age and he cracked.

    Suzuka alone is a perfect example – he pushed Schumacher so hard that he over-used his equipment, thrashed the engine.

    I don’t hate Schumacher, or Germans for that matter. But Alonso has a way of applying pressure that crackes appear sooner or later. Even Kimi would find it hard to go against this guy for the title.

    Hope I didn’t offend anyone.

  • Butterfly


    Your post is all rubbish, as usual, but I would like to say that the Ferrari has been inferior to the Red Bull all year. It does have a more powerful engine than the Red Bull, but it only works in high-speed corners, whereas the RB8 worked everywhere all year.

    The F2012 has also been *very* difficult to drive throughout the year, especially in the first part. When a world-class driver like Felipe struggles to make it into Q3 you know the car is a hand-full.

    Felipe is like Vettel & Button, but doesn’t whine as much (at all, actually). Give him a good car and he’ll match anybody.

    You obviously have a soft-spot for Vettel, but you’d do well to at least try to understand the sport.

    Have a nice day.

  • Alonso_is_slow

    I am entertained by how you are lying to yourself.

  • Lauda Fan

    Alonso_is_slow, how do you even manage to post here — I mean is someone else doing the captcha challenge for you? You are clearly a moron; dropped on your head too many times as an infant maybe? Alonso is giving away a half-second plus to Vettel and is still in with at least a mathematical chance for the title. Niki Lauda has it right when he states they are BOTH greats but Vettel has an unfair advantage. What is so hard for you to understand about it? You are clearly an idiot.

  • Lauda Fan

    “may the best man win is the consensus”

    Yes, the consensus of all those who fail miserably to understand the nuances of the sport…like many in the media (Andrew Benson excepted here). Alonso is handicapped because he is driving the Ferrari which is down anywhere from half to a full second to the Red Bull. And that’s on a good lap!