When can Verstappen be proclaimed 2022 F1 world champion?

When can Verstappen be proclaimed 2022 F1 world champion?

It seems increasingly clear that the question is not whether Verstappen will be the 2022 F1 world champion, but when he will win his second title. Let’s discuss when it’s reasonable for you to get it.

After watching Verstappen win comfortably despite starting 14th in Belgium, Mercedes team principal, It’s Wolfsuggested that “we are in a situation where the championship will end in Europe, probably”.

Although technically not possible, Wolff’s exaggerated comment was perhaps proof that Max Verstappen’s pace could have broken the excitement of the competition.

After Charles Leclerc and Ferrari held the pulse in the first third of the season, Verstappen is now on the loose, depriving the rest of the 2022 title battle of oxygen.

With just 216 points up for grabs from the last eight races, including an extra sprint weekend in Brazil, Verstappen already has a 93-point lead over nearest challenger Sergio Perez and 98 over Leclerc, giving the impression that it is extremely unlikely that we will. to have a world championship ending like the historic in 2021. All Verstappen needs is four wins in the remaining eight races to mathematically seal the title.

Verstappen could already claim the title in Singapore, with five races to go, but to do so he needs to win the next three Tests at Zandvoort, Monza and Singapore without Pérez and Leclerc scoring a single point. For simplicity, we are going to assume that the winner also gets the bonus point for the fastest lap, then the situations will be as you will see below.

Situation 1: Verstappen wins, and his rivals do not score (neither Pérez nor Leclerc)

situation after Belgium The Netherlands Italy Singapore Japan UNITED STATES Mexico Brazil Abu Dhabi
points remaining 216 190 164 138 112 86 60 26
Verstappen 284 dots 310 dots 336 dots 362 points (champion) already champion already champion already champion already champion already champion
Perez’s Deficit 93 dots 119 dots 145 dots 171 points no options no option no option no options no options
Leclerc deficit 98 dots 124 dots 150 dots 176 points no options no options no options no options no options

This is the most extreme (and least likely) option, so let’s see what’s a bit more possible. At Spa Verstappen took his ninth victory of 2022, and our second scenario is that Red Bull now has the fastest car for the rest of the season. If Verstappen were to continue his streak and take the most 26 points at Zandvoort, Monza and Singapore and Perez finished second in each race, it would take the Dutchman to a 117-point lead with 138 to go.

After the next race at Suzuka, the number of points up for grabs drops to just 112. Pérez would have to pass his team-mate at least once, and more than the difference between first and second, to prevent Verstappen Be a two-time champion of the time in Japan.

Scenario 2: Verstappen wins, Perez 2nd and Leclerc 3rd in four races

situation after Belgium The Netherlands Italy Singapore Japan UNITED STATES Mexico Brazil Abu Dhabi
points remaining 216 190 164 138 112 86 60 26
Verstappen 284 dots 310 dots 336 dots 362 dots

388 dots

(champion)

already champion already champion already champion already champion
Perez’s Deficit 93 dots 101 dots 109 dots 117 stitches 125 points no options no options no options no options
Leclerc deficit 98 dots 109 dots 120 dots 131 stitches 142 points no options no options no options no options

The logic above obviously also applies to Leclerc, who is more likely to deduct points from Verstappen given the supporting role given to the Mexican.

To extend the wait until the Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Pérez and Leclerc must leave Suzuka with less than 112 points difference. Pérez can’t drop more than 18 points in the next four races, and Leclerc just 23, knowing that on equal points, the sum of Verstappen’s wins would tip the scales for the Dutchman.

For the championship to last all the way to Mexico (at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez race), both drivers must soon start passing Verstappen rather than give up more ground. Pérez must recover eight points and Leclerc 13. Beyond Mexico, only 60 points remain at stake in Brazil and Abu Dhabiso, barring a dramatic twist, it doesn’t seem likely that Verstappen’s rivals will last that long.

Given Verstappen and Red Bull’s dominance, our prediction is that Suzuka at the Japanese GP will be the likeliest setting for the Dutchman’s second crowning glory. If Leclerc and Ferrari can find a rhythm to turn things around, or if Verstappen has to struggle, then the Austin Circuit of the Americas could host its first title celebration since 2015.

But despite Verstappen’s almost insurmountable lead, the Red Bull team principal, Christian Hornerdon’t get carried away with complacency.

“I think in terms of the league standings, obviously they look very good,” he said on Sunday evening.

“But things can change very, very quickly. We saw that, I think we were 46 points behind when we left Australia and in a few races we managed to turn things around.”

“Our mind is on each race, one by one, and the championship standings will take care of themselves, so we just want to keep this momentum going,” he concluded. But smile, smile a lot…

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