Champion vs Champion to be

Grizzly

Bear
Contributor
Ill attempt to say as little as possible and ask for justified opinions and arguments... :thinking: not gana' happen :D

The question is: the credit we gave Jenson last year, and those potential players this.

He was openly criticised by some, from all levels and to varying degrees, for not taking the championship sooner, not being deserving of it etc etc etc

I believe that this year has either:

a - Shown beyond all doubt that what we witnessed last year with Jenson was nothing less than amazing, or

b - Shown Vettel to have been everything and more that Button was criticised for last year, in not taking it this year yet, nor convincingly if at all.


Here's some drivel on Button last, and Vettel this:

Button came into last year during the teams toughest time, then went on to complete every single race in the points, with the one exception, his only retirement, coming from being hit off the track at Spa from a points paying position.

Vettel has had at least one retirement that was his own fault and a very bad result at Spa. He has already had more times off the podium than Button last year.

The Brawn car to start with was faster, by around 0.5 seconds peak to the competition behind. All the teams instantly began a development race around Brawn who had little to no money to change the car at all. I think it's pretty much agreed that by mid-season, Brawn had little to no advantage.

Red Bull this year have enjoyed up to and over 1 second! gap in lap time at certain tracks, continually updating the car to keep the gap.

Button converted all of his pole positions to race wins.

Vettel has converted 2/7 poles to victories.

Button was beaten by his team mate just 4 times total form 15 races he and Rubens both finished.

Vettel has been beaten 5 times in 12 races that he and his team mate have both finished.

Button had no priority backing from the team right to the last race.

Vettel and Webber are supposed equals, however... :crazy:


I will be the first to admit that Button is not the fastest driver under all circumstances. He really struggles when the car is not to his liking, however, F1 drivers are not football strikers, they have many elements making them great. Not just the fastest lap of a race/quali

IMO Vettel is like Ruud van Nistelrooy who, scored a lot of goals! but i don't ever remember him playing football :dunno: Or, American Muscle cars, they impress with their huge numbers, but drive one and it amounts to nothing.

Maybe this is just my own justification for backing Button as being a far better than average F1 driver and worthy champion! However if you need any more convincing, take a look back at the 2004 season, the last time BAR built something vaguely resembling a descent car!

Please feel free to agree or disagree with any or all of my points, but please justify them so that a real argument can be formed for their relative and comparative performances.

Thanks!
 

teabagyokel

#dejavu
Valued Member
I'd just like to start off with football striker is not a single attribute game and this:


And back on topic. Brawn had a stunning car and little unreliability last year. Button's only DNF was when punted off by serial crasher Romain Grosjean at Spa*. However, the Brawn this year was not clear of the Red Bull RB5, which was very close (if not better) from Turkey onwards.

Vettel and Red Bull's unreliability, so prominent in 2010, also played a part in 2009. Vettel suffered a daft collision with Kubica in the opener when chasing down Button for the win which was a microcosm of his season. Red Bull also lost their ascendency when they were the top car, allowing McLaren and Hamilton to steal victories at two Red Bullish tracks (Hungary and Singapore - and nearly Abu Dhabi too).

Button is not the fastest driver on the grid, but its nearly 2 full years at the sharp end of the grid now and it is difficult to recall a mistake he has made. He's not always got the best out of his ca????r?, but he has remained relaxed and accurate throughout.

To sum up, neither Button or Vettel are the perfect Grand Prix driver. Someone who could combine the consistency, accuracy and racecraft of Button with the speed, qualifying pace and agression of Vettel would be that driver.

There is no need to start saying one is 'better' than the other, because in terms of talents one has everything the other lacks and vice versa?. In time however, I believe Vettel's flaws may be somewhat ironed out, and he will then be able to challenge the top drivers in equal or less-than-equal machinery.

*He does like being punted off at Spa, call it Trulli's Revenge (2000)!
?He's been beaten quite often by Hamilton and on occasion by Barrichello.
?Button knows how to celebrate unobnoxiously
 

siffert_fan

Too old to watch the Asian races live.
Contributor
Button was never challenged by his teammate the way Webber has been challenging Vettell. Webber knows that this may well be his last, best chance for a WDC and is pursuing it aggressively. Rubens knew that the WDC was never within his reach and was more a supporter of Button than a competitor. That fact alone skews the statistics within the teams.
 

cider_and_toast

Exulted Lord High Moderator of the Apex
Staff Member
Premium Contributor
You can't really compare this season to last. For starters, last season the Brawn was clearly the class of the field until everyone else could get a double diffuser to work. RBR were their closest challenge and it took until Hungary for anyone other than a Brawn or an RBR to take a win.

I agree with Siffert_Fan that Button also had nowhere near as much pressure from his team mate as has Vettel from Webber. Just look at the way that Webber handled "Wing Gate" at the British GP by going out and taking the win while Rubens who couldn't keep the pace up in Spain blamed it all on the team favouring Button.

To some extent Button, I hate to use the word choked, but clearly tightened up during the second half of the season and where there were tracks that still suited the Brawn car it was Rubens who took the points so it's hardly the mark of something "nothing less than amazing".

This year, Vettel not only faces a tougher test against his team mate than Button faced last year against Rubens but there are also 2 other teams right alongside RBR who are as quick. There were 3 different wins from 3 different teams in the first 3 races of the season.

I'm not sure I agree with the quotes of "0.5 Seconds Peak" and "up to and over 1 Second" as I thing they are somewhat misleading. If you look at the first 7 races of 09, Brawn had at least 5 trouble free, dry races in which to show their performance advantage with only a red flagged Malaysia (stopped while Button was leading) and a rain effected China (Vettel Win) to effect the performance of the cars where as this season, Vettel has had 2 races effected by Mech issues, 2 races that were effected by rain, One which had 4 safety car periods, one where he collided with his team mate and one where he managed to win. Not exactly the best way to show off any advantage with the car.
 

sportsman

Sidecar racers have the biggest cojones
Contributor
Not much to add to that.I agree with both siffert fan and c_a_t
My only comment would be regarding their difference in level of experience.
 

RickD

Pole Sitter
siffert_fan said:
Button was never challenged by his teammate the way Webber has been challenging Vettell. Webber knows that this may well be his last, best chance for a WDC and is pursuing it aggressively. Rubens knew that the WDC was never within his reach and was more a supporter of Button than a competitor. That fact alone skews the statistics within the teams.
So Reubens knew this from the beginning of the year did he?!?

Jenson was just that much better than Reubens (Vettel is simply not that much better than Webber and considering he is supposed to be the new protege, hes not all that if he can't easily beat Mark), admittedly Jenson did have a wobble towards the end of the year and could have wrapped it up possibly an event sooner, but not much more than that. I do not blame him for having a bit of a wobble, he has been in F1 for too long not to have just about given up on ever getting a car that would allow him to win the WDC, then to suddenly get that chance with a team that could not afford to develop the car, meaning he had what was easily the third fastest car towards the end of the season.

Reubens had the same chances. This should have shown how fast Jenson can be in a car that suits (even i'll admit that if the balance isn't there, he will struggle), but people as always, want to put down a driver who thrashed his team mate and has beaten most of the other team mates he has had.

Jenson also proved how good he is at overtaking when it is required. I can't say the same for Vettel. Who (of the front runners, back markers are not overtakes.. ;) ) has Vettel overtaken this year without crashing into them?

Why do people have such a downer on Jenson, that is what I would like to know. At the beginning of this season, it was "He'll get annihilated by Lewis", after a few races, it was, "He is lucky and that is all that has got him ahead of Lewis in the points", Lewis admittedly is fast, but he is error prone as well, which Jenson never has been (yeah, yeah, his first season spear into the wall was an error before you point it out, but it was a very green rookie error who didn't take Schumachers racing style into account). If it wasn't for a mechanic leaving a cover on the intake in Monaco, he could easily be within a few points of the leaders.

As is stated, F1 is not always about pure speed, something Alonso will attest to (even with his 6/10ths).. The ultimate skillful driver was Prost and Jenson is in the same mould, I think over the next couple of years at McLaren, he will finally come into his own. Please remember, this is his first year at McLaren and the current car was built around Lewis' driving style, next year will be different, but this year hasn't been bad for someone who was going to get annihilated.. :)
 

KekeTheKing

Banned
Supporter
In just about a month's time we will have a lot more info to take into account when assessing Seb, Jense and their respective accomplishments. These upcoming three rounds will determine whether we have a New World Champion poised to reign over F1 for years to come, or whether we have an underachiever that failed to seize a golden opportunity in a dominant car. They will also determine whether a steady-going, point earning, circumspect driver like Button can outlast and outscore an aggressive, balls-out, hard charging driver like Hamilton.

By most measures, Vettel has not had a great year. His Pole Position to GP Win ratio is atrocious, irrespective of the impact of mechanical issues. Conversely, Webber has had an exceptional year, out-pacing his highly touted teammate on several occasions while collecting points at every GP that he didn't take flight at. Seb hasn't been very lucky, while Webber seems to be cashing in on his career's worth of bad Karma by escaping multiple collisions with minimal damage, even taking podiums while the other drivers involved were forced to retire. And yet they sit very close in the WDC standings, with many people tipping Vettel as having the upper hand at this point.

The situation is similar in the McLaren camp. Hamilton has scored about the least amount of points possible this year, considering the way he has driven throughout the whole of the season. Whether it was a mechanical issue or "racing incident" (Mark Webber), Lewis has been robbed of two podiums and two fourths. His one mistake was a very marginal error on the first lap at Monza involving a driver with absolutely nothing to lose. The only major points-haul that Button has been deprived of is from Spa, where Vettel's Red Bull took him clean out. He of course retired at Monaco when the team incredibly left the sidepod blocked on the way to the grid, but this years McLaren is not suited for street circuits, and a serious points paying position was not in the cards for Jenson that day anyway.

If Button ends up beating Hamilton this year, I do not think it will change many observers viewpoint that Lewis is the faster driver, who can cope with handling/balance issues better than Jenson and take his car to positions it has no business being in. A sober look at the data will leave most people with the opinion that Lewis was the superior driver that encountered a string of misfortune that would de-rail anybody's title charge.

But if Webber beats Vettel this season, mechanical issues, driver errors, and luck aside, it will be a monumental upset, and it could theoretically change the way Seb's career moves forward. The season will be largely remembered for Vettel's inability to take the championship in a masterful qualifying machine, and how he couldn't close the deal in a car that was fastest at all but one or two circuits. If Sebastian comes out on top this year, it will be a remarkable win that elevates him to the top tier of F1 drivers, above Button, and he won't have to deal with all the what-ifs and could-have-beens for the rest of his life. The mistakes and collisions that were a talking point for most of the year will be largely forgotten, and history will recall nothing but the fact that he was the 2010 Champion.

In short, the final three rounds of this season will go a long way to determining how Seb Vettel is viewed by the broader F1 world. However, I do not think they will go very far in determining how people feel about Button. Jenson is an excellent driver who seized his best opportunity to win the championship in a dominant Brawn that did not have to battle with the might of McLaren and Ferrari. Jenson has been, and will be recognized for his greatest attribute, consistency. Seb still has a chance to write his legacy, and the outcome of this championship will play a big part in defining his young career.
 

Galahad

Not a Moderator
Valued Member
The criticism aimed at Button last year was mainly nonsense. Jenson is a great "championship driver" and there's nothing wrong with that, a noble tradition indeed. He faced considerable opposition from Barrichello - he was outqualified nine times by Rubens in the last ten races, lest we forget, not to mention the increased competition from Red Bull, McLaren and Ferrari.

The context of the season meant he had to win the championship in a defensive manner, fighting off the back foot and holding onto his accumulated points lead. Alonso did much the same for his two titles, 2005 particularly. This season we're seeing how both respond to being the hunter rather than the hunted, and I'd that, in spite of the points standings, Jenson has made a better fist of it overall.

As for Vettel, I don't think it's appropriate to make a comparison based only, or even mainly, on bald statistics. Most of those missed opportunities were not, in the end, down to him - though he has dropped enough points on his own that he will regret. It's also surprising that Webber is closer to him on pace this year, but again, I think the credit for that should go to Mark, rather than the blame going to Seb.

Vettel will remain a challenger for years to come, and if he parts company with Red Bull at any stage I have no doubt that other big teams will be after him, regardless of what happens this season. The vitriol poured on him would be no worse than what Hamilton had to suffer after 2007, and we all know how that has turned out. Sebastian is one of the most naturally talented drivers on the grid, with skill, determination and aggression in spades. He will only be recognised as the leading light of his generation if he can marry those attributes to some better fine judgement under pressure, and consistency over a season. But there's time enough for that.
 

MCLS

Anti F1 fan
Valued Member
Personally I don't think Vettel will be a world champion, in his 2 years at Red Bull he has made way too many errors, particularly compared to Webber who has had a fantastic 2010. Vettel has got himself into way too many stupid maneuvers and accidents and you cant just keep putting them into the inexperience category as he is in his 3rd full season of F1, (4 seasons as he drove at the end of 2007 for Torro Rosso) It is easy to put the blame that he's not leading on the cars reliability at the start, but then all 5 have had problems this season, (notably Lewis in the last few races). The amount of wins he has thrown away this season from pole position has been way too much and in my opinion he wouldn't be a deserving world champion if he won this season.
 

cider_and_toast

Exulted Lord High Moderator of the Apex
Staff Member
Premium Contributor
McLarenSupremo said:
in my opinion he wouldn't be a deserving world champion if he won this season
I don't believe there is any such thing as a non deserving champion. The manor of the victory is something that fans can discuss all night long but I'm pretty sure that it's only the victory that the driver (and team) care about.

Even Button, a driver I can't stand, deserved to win his title last year by virtue of the fact that he scored the most points.

The one thing about Button this season is that he has confounded a lot of his critics in being able to handle life at Mclaren and perform to a level that wasn't expected of him by most of us. That has gone a long way in rehabilitating him in the eyes of his detractors. He must be applauded for the wins he's had this season and I remember remarking to my wife after his win in Australia that at last, Button had won his first race. It didn't need half the field to retire or a superb bit of Aero design but a well controlled race with great tyre calls and pace when and where it was needed.

As for Vettel, his confidence may have taken on knock because I'm sure that going into this season he would have thought he would have the measure of Webber but the title race isn't over yet and now we are going to really see who can handle the pressure. If he doesn't win it this year I'm sure he will come back even stronger next year. Remember this is the guy that took a win against all odds in a Torro Rosso.
 

Grizzly

Bear
Contributor
Fantastic thought out responses.

Ill make comment on as much as i can when i can, surprisingly/sadly ive actually been quite busy at work this week so haven't had time to respond fully, but will try and look over this again at the weekend to formulate some for/against arguments to the responces that will hopefully draw out even more opinion....



teabagyokel said:
I'd just like to start off with football striker is not a single attribute game and this:
lol, of course not, just a little sarcastic jab in the ribs to warm the blood. No defence for my Muscle car 'facts' though?
 

MCLS

Anti F1 fan
Valued Member
cider_and_toast said:
If he doesn't win it this year I'm sure he will come back even stronger next year. Remember this is the guy that took a win against all odds in a Torro Rosso.
Hardly, at Monza it was the best car in those conditions, even Bourdais managed to qualify 4th, it was only a failed gamble by McLaren with Lewis' strategy that pretty much made sure that Vettel won
 

teabagyokel

#dejavu
Valued Member
McLarenSupremo said:
Personally I don't think Vettel will be a world champion, in his 2 years at Red Bull he has made way too many errors, particularly compared to Webber who has had a fantastic 2010. Vettel has got himself into way too many stupid maneuvers and accidents and you cant just keep putting them into the inexperience category as he is in his 3rd full season of F1, (4 seasons as he drove at the end of 2007 for Torro Rosso) It is easy to put the blame that he's not leading on the cars reliability at the start, but then all 5 have had problems this season, (notably Lewis in the last few races). The amount of wins he has thrown away this season from pole position has been way too much and in my opinion he wouldn't be a deserving world champion if he won this season.
I am sorry, but I'm not going to play the game of predicting who will be World Champion in the future. Its a nonsense. We don't know what tricks fate will play, who will calm down or get angry. I can see Seb Vettel never winning a Championship, I can see him winning numerous. We just don't know.
 

Enja

isn't dead.
Valued Member
Why are we even talking about this?

There's still 3 races left, you know. Then it becomes a legitimate topic for debate.
 

sportsman

Sidecar racers have the biggest cojones
Contributor
teabagyokel said:
McLarenSupremo said:
Personally I don't think Vettel will be a world champion, in his 2 years at Red Bull he has made way too many errors, particularly compared to Webber who has had a fantastic 2010. Vettel has got himself into way too many stupid maneuvers and accidents and you cant just keep putting them into the inexperience category as he is in his 3rd full season of F1, (4 seasons as he drove at the end of 2007 for Torro Rosso) It is easy to put the blame that he's not leading on the cars reliability at the start, but then all 5 have had problems this season, (notably Lewis in the last few races). The amount of wins he has thrown away this season from pole position has been way too much and in my opinion he wouldn't be a deserving world champion if he won this season.
I am sorry, but I'm not going to play the game of predicting who will be World Champion in the future. Its a nonsense. We don't know what tricks fate will play, who will calm down or get angry. I can see Seb Vettel never winning a Championship, I can see him winning numerous. We just don't know.
I fully agree.I have no interest in speculation.I have no interest in the driver A is better than Driver B debates.
Currently both Vettel and Massa are fashionable.For some inexplicable reason apparently Massa's drive is in danger for 2011.Have Ferrari said so.Has Massa said so. Or has everyone's imagination run amok due to some Ferrari comments.
 
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