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 Post subject: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2013 1:20 am 
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A thread to discuss when a driver/team/package went against previous form and for one or a few races was on top of the world before returning back to their normal level.

I will open with...

Takumo Sato, USA 2004. 2nd place.

Giancarlo Fisichella, Spa 2009. 2nd place. He should have won if not for Kimis KERs restart, still not sure how that car managed to dominate the weekend. Best qualifying before that race was 15th, then he stuck it on pole.

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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2013 1:32 am 
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Sato finished 3rd not 2nd.

I'd say Maldonado in Spain 2012. Briefly he was Williams new hero and the man who took them back to victory.

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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2013 5:10 am 
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rosberg in china 2012

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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2013 5:17 am 
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Usman wrote:
rosberg in china 2012

well the guy has been on the podium 7 times

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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2013 6:52 am 
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Ivan Capelli - Paul Ricard 1990


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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2013 9:19 am 
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I'd add the Sato overtake on Alonso's McLaren in 2007, after overtaking Kimi and Ralf. What a moment. He finished the race 6th. In the race he went from midfield to being last, then up to 5th, then spun and dropped to 11th, overtaking 5 cars to get to 6th in the end. Overshadowed Lewis's first win for a lot of people.

Epic epic race from Taku in the Super Aguri

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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2013 9:21 am 
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SchumieRules wrote:
I'd add the Sato overtake on Alonso's McLaren in 2007, after overtaking Kimi and Ralf. What a moment. He finished the race 6th. In the race he went from midfield to being last, then up to 5th, then spun and dropped to 11th, overtaking 5 cars to get to 6th in the end. Overshadowed Lewis's first win for a lot of people.

Epic epic race from Taku in the Super Aguri

I don't remember that... I need to watch that again, sounds epic. Sato's a dude.

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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2013 9:28 am 
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jammin78 wrote:
SchumieRules wrote:
I'd add the Sato overtake on Alonso's McLaren in 2007, after overtaking Kimi and Ralf. What a moment. He finished the race 6th. In the race he went from midfield to being last, then up to 5th, then spun and dropped to 11th, overtaking 5 cars to get to 6th in the end. Overshadowed Lewis's first win for a lot of people.

Epic epic race from Taku in the Super Aguri

I don't remember that... I need to watch that again, sounds epic. Sato's a dude.


That overtake was the highlight of the race. Taking Alonso's McLaren. Overtook it from the outside as well! Epic stuff

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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2013 9:31 am 
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lamo wrote:
A thread to discuss when a driver/team/package went against previous form and for one or a few races was on top of the world before returning back to their normal level.

I will open with...

Takumo Sato, USA 2004. 2nd place.

Giancarlo Fisichella, Spa 2009. 2nd place. He should have won if not for Kimis KERs restart, still not sure how that car managed to dominate the weekend. Best qualifying before that race was 15th, then he stuck it on pole.

The thing with Sato that year is though he was regularly threatenning to do something impressive. Infact in a lot of races he was actually quicker than Button. But he nearly always managed to find a way to screw things up. For pace that year he was generally quite competitive even if for 2005 he just fell away.

Spa 2009 has to be right up there with the biggest shocks in history though. From nowhere the Force India became the best car. I think at first everyone was struggling to work out what happenned but it was clear that although the car did not have great downforce it was very efficient aerodynamically hence why they were so quick on the low speed downforce tracks. Remember Sutil was very quick in Monza as well.

The other one I'd mention is perhaps Imola 2005. In what was a difficult year for Ferrari and Bridgestone at Imola the Bridgestone's worked exceptionally well and Schumacher was nearly 2 seconds quicker than everyone else. Although the car later showed flashes of speed like in Spain and Monaco it never got anywhere near close to what it did in Imola where it looked like Schumacher could do another 2004.


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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2013 9:38 am 
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Hard to look past Maldonado. Other than his win he's never come close to a podium and rarely been in the points. If you apply the 'classic' points system (top 6) many other contenders were subject to he'd have only one points finish other than his win.

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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2013 9:39 am 
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Balibari wrote:
Hard to look past Maldonado. Other than his win he's never come close to a podium and rarely been in the points. If you apply the 'classic' points system (top 6) many other contenders were subject to he'd have only one points finish other than his win.

Has he really only been in the top 6 twice in his career?

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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2013 9:51 am 
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jammin78 wrote:
Balibari wrote:
Hard to look past Maldonado. Other than his win he's never come close to a podium and rarely been in the points. If you apply the 'classic' points system (top 6) many other contenders were subject to he'd have only one points finish other than his win.

Has he really only been in the top 6 twice in his career?

Yeah. His 5th in Abu Dhabi is it, from both seasons. The four other points finishes were all 8th-10th.

His average finishing position last year was 12th (excluding retirements).

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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2013 9:56 am 
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Balibari wrote:
jammin78 wrote:
Balibari wrote:
Hard to look past Maldonado. Other than his win he's never come close to a podium and rarely been in the points. If you apply the 'classic' points system (top 6) many other contenders were subject to he'd have only one points finish other than his win.

Has he really only been in the top 6 twice in his career?

Yeah. His 5th in Abu Dhabi is it, from both seasons. The four other points finishes were all 8th-10th.

His average finishing position last year was 12th (excluding retirements).

Wow, and he's still touted by some as WDC potential. Hard to think he's made a good impact towards the end of last year yet his record is still woeful.

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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2013 10:30 am 
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Balibari wrote:
Hard to look past Maldonado. Other than his win he's never come close to a podium and rarely been in the points. If you apply the 'classic' points system (top 6) many other contenders were subject to he'd have only one points finish other than his win.


I disagree, Valencia 2012 he was looking at a potential 2nd/3rd place wasn't he?

Then in Singapore 2012, I think he was looking at another 3rd until his car ground to a halt.

I think while Maldonado can easily be dismissed as a flash in the pan, I personally think the talent is there.

He is a bit like Montoya but even less consistent and more reckless, but hopefully next year he can tone it down and we can see what he can really.

To bandy around the old cliché 'You cannot make a slow driver fast but you can make a fast driver consistent'

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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2013 10:33 am 
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Johnny Herbert 1995 British GP
Johnny Herbert 1995 Italian GP
Johnny Herbert 1999 European GP (Nurburgring)

If there is a more popular hattrick of wins then I haven't seen them.

How about Mika Salo 1999 German GP? Had to give the win to Irvine but was awesome that Sunday.


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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2013 1:00 pm 
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Jarno Trulli: Monaco 2004.
Adrian Sutil: Monza Quali 2009.
Kamui Kobayashi: Japan 2012.
Vitaly Petrov: Abu Dhabi 2010.
Timo Glock: Singapore 2009.

Some food for thought. :)

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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2013 5:35 pm 
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mikeyg123 wrote:
Ivan Capelli - Paul Ricard 1990

Dang I thought nobody would think of it!

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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2013 7:12 pm 
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There are a couple of examples like the OP pointed, I don't remember the year very well, but Renault in the early 80s had a couple of strong races per season following a peculiar slump, same thing can be said of Alesi in the opening round of 1990 season. Damon Hill in Hungary 97. Pérez in Sepang last year.


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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2013 10:32 pm 
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Trulli at Austria 1997. The Bridgestones gave us some weird races that year

Fisichella at Brazil 2003. OK the victory was more down to being in the right place in the right time rather than outright pace but still the Jordan was never anywhere near the front at any other point that year

Vettel at Monza 2008. He showed some decent pace at a number of races in the latter part of the year but stepped up a level as Monza's unique layout suited the car perfectly


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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 1:46 am 
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Some great posts and memories, Sato on Alonso was a complete shock.

I will throw Damon Hill and the arrows in there for Hungary in 1997.

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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 1:53 am 
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Damon in the Arrows at Hungary in 1997 was the first that sprung to my mind. Ayrton in the Toleman at Monaco 1984..? Everyone is aware of this race being a pointer to his ability but the car itself was uncompetitive and under normal conditions would have been nowhere.
Our Nige, Silverstone 1988. After Williams had switched to a normally aspirated engine (Judd) it did not compete with the turbos that year but a wet Silverstone saw him climb to second place - I was almost willing Ayrton to break down from the lead!

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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 6:14 am 
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Almost literally, Kimi Brazil 2003.

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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 7:28 am 
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I thought Hulkenburg's pole position at Brazil 2010 was fantastic. I'm sure he felt like a champion that day.


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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 8:34 am 
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SchumieRules wrote:
jammin78 wrote:
SchumieRules wrote:
I'd add the Sato overtake on Alonso's McLaren in 2007, after overtaking Kimi and Ralf. What a moment. He finished the race 6th. In the race he went from midfield to being last, then up to 5th, then spun and dropped to 11th, overtaking 5 cars to get to 6th in the end. Overshadowed Lewis's first win for a lot of people.

Epic epic race from Taku in the Super Aguri

I don't remember that... I need to watch that again, sounds epic. Sato's a dude.


That overtake was the highlight of the race. Taking Alonso's McLaren. Overtook it from the outside as well! Epic stuff


What's depressing is this sounds like Kobayashi - constantly impressing but not consistent enough to give him a bigger seat. I hope 2014 he finds a seat but realistically..


Suzuka - Kobayashi 3rd place - Certainly felt like a champion from the cheers, haven't had hairs on the back of my neck like that since 2008.
Australia - Webber 5th place - Was great seeing the Minardi guys go crazy for this. I miss Minardi!


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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 8:50 am 
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How about Luca Badoar - European Grand Prix 99

Jean Alesi - France 99 (until he spun!)

Barrichello - Monaco 97


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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 9:33 am 
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Johnny Herbert winning the european grand prix in 1999 with Stewart.The race was a bit of a demolition derby though.


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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 1:14 pm 
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I'd say Hill @ Hungary '97 but since he WAS the Champion for that year then you could easily discount him...

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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 2:14 pm 
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Panis at Monaco in 1996 of course.

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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 5:11 pm 
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Can't look past Markus Winkelhock! Started from last, led by 30 seconds, started from 1st then retired. Ok, not quite champion for a day, but for half an hour it looked pretty comfortable for him!

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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 5:49 pm 
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Me! I had to drive a car with ceramic street pads on the front and the same compound in the rear that Audi R18's were using at LM, could not adjust brake balance or damping to help compensate, and still didn't finish last despite driving a car with one axle stopping at the 150 board and the other at the 50. AND I had to add almost 100lbs of ballast with no chance to do shakedown w/it. I've never been so happy to come Psecondtolast. :D


But errr, I'll have to say Kimi or Fisi, Brazil 03

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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 7:05 pm 
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H-Holloway wrote:
I think while Maldonado can easily be dismissed as a flash in the pan, I personally think the talent is there.

He is a bit like Montoya but even less consistent and more reckless, but hopefully next year he can tone it down and we can see what he can really.

To bandy around the old cliché 'You cannot make a slow driver fast but you can make a fast driver consistent'

I agree Maldonado at times seems to have the raw talent, just not the head.


H-Holloway wrote:
He is a bit like Montoya but even less consistent and more reckless, but hopefully next year he can tone it down and we can see what he can really do.

To bandy around the old cliché 'You cannot make a slow driver fast but you can make a fast driver consistent'

I dislike it when people make statements to suggest Montoya was reckless. The guy was not reckless. he was just never one to back down to ANYONE for any reason but he was a smooth and well calculated driver who possessed the cojones to be aggressive in areas and in ways no one else could. His main flaw was his impatience with F1 as a whole and he walked away MUCH too soon.

That last sentence isn't necessarily accurate. A good driver can be taught to drive faster and even some great ones. I'll use Paul Tracy as an example. When Teamed up with A.J. Allmendinger, he couldn't figure out why A.J. was lapping faster and actually went up to him and asked him how he was doing it and A.J. simply told him, left foot braking. PT immediately jumped back in the car and started trying it but was still unsuccessful as he'd never done it before. So again, he went back to A.J. to ask questions and A.J. explained exactly how and where and why it works. Tracy then jumped back in the car and in a matter of 20 laps was upping his lap times. The main issue with left foot braking is that the touch and finesse simply isn't there and you tend to slam it much too hard so you have to practice it constantly to develop the right touch. Tracy having already been really fast throughout his long career learned a new technique and increased his speed a bit more.

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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 8:14 pm 
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JMILAT wrote:
lamo wrote:
A thread to discuss when a driver/team/package went against previous form and for one or a few races was on top of the world before returning back to their normal level.

I will open with...

Takumo Sato, USA 2004. 2nd place.

Giancarlo Fisichella, Spa 2009. 2nd place. He should have won if not for Kimis KERs restart, still not sure how that car managed to dominate the weekend. Best qualifying before that race was 15th, then he stuck it on pole.

The thing with Sato that year is though he was regularly threatenning to do something impressive. Infact in a lot of races he was actually quicker than Button. But he nearly always managed to find a way to screw things up. For pace that year he was generally quite competitive even if for 2005 he just fell away.

Spa 2009 has to be right up there with the biggest shocks in history though. From nowhere the Force India became the best car. I think at first everyone was struggling to work out what happenned but it was clear that although the car did not have great downforce it was very efficient aerodynamically hence why they were so quick on the low speed downforce tracks. Remember Sutil was very quick in Monza as well.

The other one I'd mention is perhaps Imola 2005. In what was a difficult year for Ferrari and Bridgestone at Imola the Bridgestone's worked exceptionally well and Schumacher was nearly 2 seconds quicker than everyone else. Although the car later showed flashes of speed like in Spain and Monaco it never got anywhere near close to what it did in Imola where it looked like Schumacher could do another 2004.


Vagaries of a tyre war. If it had rained every saturday night before the race it would have been another 2004. Obviously Schumi drove well, a bit like Hill in Hungary 1997.


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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 9:18 pm 
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Gianni Morbidelli - 3rd place @ the 1995 Australian GP.

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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Sat Jan 19, 2013 7:15 pm 
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Giancarlo Fisichella Brazil 2003 maybe

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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Sun Jan 20, 2013 9:11 am 
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Pedro de la Rosa's podium at the Hungarian Grand Prix in 2006.
Mika Salo's podium at Hockenheim in 1999.
Alex Wurz podium at Montreal in 2007.

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 Post subject: Re: Champion for a day
PostPosted: Sun Jan 20, 2013 9:51 am 
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Hulk Brasil 2010 qualifying


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