We all know for a fact how big formula one is in the United Kingdom. In fact, there are various f1 themed venues and activities for people to have fun and enjoy the thrill of the sport. There are pit stop challenges for your employees, guests and visitors, forcing them to work as a team and making them team players.
Talking about this year, a lot of thrill was expected between Ferrari and Mercedes. But as we all know, Lewis Hamilton outshone Sebastian Vettel once again to become the world champion this season.
In the title-clinching race, Lewis Hamilton’s dominance made sure that Mercedes took the Constructor’s crown for the fifth year in a row. This once again left Ferrari wondering about what might have been if they had tried to approach the season and efforts differently.
Having said this, there were many other controversial moments that made it to the headlines. Here are three of the top controversies of the 2018 Formula One Season.
1: Daniel DNF Ricciardo
Daniel Ricciardo is a driver who has tasted both, the ecstasy of winning two Grand Prix as well as the agony of this sport. This season, Daniel registered two epic wins under his name. One of it showcased his tough fight and mettle in the Chinese Grand Prix at Shanghai offering some nail-biting overtaking, especially towards the end of the race.
Yet for this amazing driver, the struggles were real at a track where he previously seemed certain of a win. The troubles for him amplified by a car that suddenly became unreliable. What did not please the driver and his fans a bit was the fact that the ever-smiling Aussie went on to register 8 DNFs.
This certainly took the sheen off his season, a year where everyone witnessed the familiar smile of Daniel Ricciardo wiped out by the ill-fortune of his Red Bull loss. But even though Daniel did not leave as a happy man from Red Bull, his season appeared polarised in the end.
2: The ‘Wingman’
One of the biggest surprises for this season was the form of Valtteri Bottas, the Mercedes driver who was clearly enduring an unforgettable year. However, at some point, it did appear (from a fan perspective) that the Finn was perhaps in the contest to merely help Hamilton win. For instance, Bottas contested a torrid season. Nothing else can ever explain this more precisely than the fact that he endured a winless run.
During the Azerbaijan Grand Prix, with the cars picking up pace having scaled down the speed owing to a stint with the safety vehicle, Valtteri who was leading the Grand Prix ran over debris and suffered a tyre puncture. Tough luck, wasn’t it?
Another disappointing moment was at the US Grand Prix, where Bottas who had already cracked under pressure to Vettel’s commanding fight at Silverstone, ran wide at a corner on the late stages of the race, thus letting the German to leap ahead and take fourth place in the GP.
There were multiple instances during the season where under pressure Bottas’ role quickly receded from being a competitive force at the start of the season into becoming ‘second fiddle’ to Hamilton. Thus, looking at this inability of converting strong starts into race wins, the Finn became a subject of various social media debates and trolls as well.
The claim of ‘wingman’ made by the F1 fans and as seen on social media, later came to haunt the driver’s season. However, it is worth mentioning the fact that not everything about Bottas or his efforts this season was completely in shambles. After all, the Mercedes drivers have set the record for securing the highest number of fastest laps in 2018 at seven.
3: ‘Interesting tactics’ at Silverstone
Lewis Hamilton has a lot of respect for Kimi Raikkonen. The duo have had some incredible contests over the years and have been competing at the top echelons of Formula One for a while now.
In fact, fans have witnessed many occasions where Hamilton openly praised Kimi’s experience and ability to compete consistently despite the Finn being the oldest man on the grid.
During the race at Silverstone, Hamilton, the pole sitter, found to his dismay that the commanding Ferrari of Vettel and his Mercedes’ teammate Bottas going past his car within seconds at the start. However, on the race day, it was pretty evident which was the fastest car among Ferrari and Mercedes.
But in the struggle for track position, which quickly became a three-way fight inside the opening lap itself, saw Hamilton (on third) coming under the attack from the fourth-placed Kimi (as Vettel started chipping away).
During the run down to Village, on lap 1 itself, Kimi tried his best to pass Hamilton. It thus made contact with the Mercedes, a move that spun Hamilton around the track and eventually dropped him down to the back of the grid (despite him driving at his home track).
Later in the race, Hamilton recovered and managed a second place position in the end, ahead of Kimi. however, by this time, Kimi and Ferrari had earned the wrath of a grieving Lewis who labelled the opening lap incident as being some sort of tactic deployed by Ferrari.