There has been a captivating discourse surrounding the potential runner-up in this year’s drivers’ championship, and rather surprisingly, the name of Lewis Hamilton has emerged as a contender. The distinguished British racing driver presently occupies the fourth position in the drivers’ standings, trailing behind Sergio Perez and Fernando Alonso, who hold the second and third spots respectively. Prognosticating that Hamilton is destined to secure the runner-up position, a notable opinion was voiced by Pinkham, who noted, “Aston Martin’s commendable streak seems to have reached its conclusion.”
Pinkham’s perspective raises questions about the absence of Sergio Perez, who currently stands as the runner-up in the drivers’ standings with 189 points, boasting a significant lead of 41 points over Hamilton, who accumulates 148 points. Nonetheless, the tide might shift soon, as Hamilton sets his sights on surpassing Aston Martin’s driver, Fernando Alonso, positioned in third place. The gap between the two contenders has dwindled down to a mere solitary point.
“I’m going to say that Lewis Hamilton will finish runner-up because I fear Aston Martin’s decent run of form is over.
“Whether it is to do with this flexi-wing being out-ruled or they have just gone down a bit of a cul-de-sac in terms of development and it’s been exaggerated by the fact that others have done well, like McLaren.”
Even the 1996 world champion, Hill, has not discounted Perez from the equation. Hill expresses his hope that Perez maintains his momentum, considering the unprecedented opportunity for Red Bull to secure a remarkable 1-2 victory in the drivers’ championship. In Hill’s words, “The prospect of Verstappen and Perez locking the top two spots is a feasible reality this season.”
“I don’t think Lewis can get Checo. I’d be amazed if he could overturn his performance. We don’t want Checo to have another nightmare middle part of the season like he’s had and I think he’s turned a corner a bit.
“Red Bull have never had a 1-2 in the drivers’ championship. It’s leading up to them ticking all the boxes, breaking all the records and I kind of would like to see that happen because then it’s a historic season and you were there to witness it – they are breaking all the records as they go and we are going into the unknown.”
Adding weight to Perez’s potential ascension, Verstappen’s former performance engineer, Hinsey, underscores the substantial likelihood of Perez clinching the second position. Hinsey points to Perez’s impressive resurgence towards the conclusion of the previous season as a testament to his capabilities. As Hinsey puts it, “Perez’s resurgence at the tail end of the prior season serves as a compelling argument for his impending success.”
“I see Natalie’s point as well but I think Perez will finish runner-up. He had this little slump in form last year after the summer break and then came back towards the end of the season and he was fighting.
“I don’t remember that happening with him in the past. But I’m going to be boring and go for Perez. I think that’s almost a certainty but not guaranteed.”
Consequently, the scales seem to tip in favor of Perez, garnering two votes in his favor against one for Lewis Hamilton. The outcome of the forthcoming races will undoubtedly play a pivotal role in determining whether this current order maintains its course.