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Who Won F1's 'European Title'? Standings Without Races in the Rest of the World

Scott MitchellContributor IOctober 20, 2016

Who Won F1's 'European Title'? Standings Without Races in the Rest of the World

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    Formula One's roots are in Europe, of that there is no doubt.

    Some believe the sport's move away from the classic circuits and team bases is a detriment to its history and traditions.

    Others believe it is a necessity if F1 is to truly call itself a world championship.

    But back in F1's formative years, it was only a European championship. The Indianapolis 500 was part of the calendar but was rarely contested by leading outfits, rendering it a token addition to what was initially a six-race calendar.

    Amazingly, in 2013 there were just seven European Grands Prix, indicating minimal expansion over F1's entire history within its "home" continent.

    So who excelled in those? Certainly not Kimi Raikkonen, who tumbles from fourth to sixth despite racking up three seconds in Spain, Germany and Hungary.

    Non-scores in Belgium and Italy cost him dearly, but what about the rest? If F1 had a European title, who would have claimed the crown this season?

Constructors' Championship

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    Original Top Three: 1. Red Bull 352; 2. Ferrari 248; 3. Mercedes 245

    B/R F1 European Championship Top Three: 1. Red Bull 206; 2. Mercedes 156; 3. Ferrari 149

     

    It doesn't matter what system you try to apply, or how you try to limit this team, Red Bull Racing is relentless in its dominance.

    Outscored by nearest European rival Mercedes in just two Grands Prix—Monaco and Britainthe Milton Keynes-based outfit has been remarkably consistent.

    It was bested by Ferrari in the "season-opening" Spanish Grand Prix, then the Silver Arrows around Monte Carlo. Still it held a nine-point lead courtesy of the strength of its driver pairing and its ability to deliver results on different circuits.

    It slipped behind Mercedes after Sebastian Vettel's retirement at Silverstone but moved back ahead with a strong run to victory for Vettel in Germany, despite being outscored by the podium-filling Lotus pair.

    The purple patch it hit then pushed it beyond the reach of its rivals. Mercedes won in Hungary, but Red Bull picked up more points, before back-to-back wins for Vettelcoupled with fifth and third for Mark Webberenabled them to soar to European glory.

5. Lewis Hamilton

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    B/R F1 European Championship Statistics

    Points: 76

    Wins: One

    Podiums: Two

    2013 Position: Third

    Hamilton slumps from third to fifth in our Alternative Standings, and it's easy to see why. Despite winning in Hungary, the Mercedes driver has been solid rather than spectacular in the European races.

    He was immediately playing catch-up after non-scoring at the "season-opening" Spanish Grand Prix, recovering with a brace of fourths in Monaco and Britain while his teammate went on to win.

    His Budapest triumph was preceded by fifth in Germany, but his win thrust him into the European title fight. But he lost ground finishing third as Vettel won in Belgium, and a troubled run to ninth in the Monza finale ended his very outside shot of landing the coveted B/R F1 European Championship.

4. Nico Rosberg

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    B/R F1 European Championship Statistics

    Points: 80

    Wins: Two

    Podiums: Two

    2013 Position: Sixth

    Nico Rosberg's stunning back-to-back wins in Monaco and Britain saw him assume the European Championship lead after three races, as he bounced back from an unspectacular run to sixth in Spain.

    At this stage he was 12 points clear of Alonso and 15 clear of Webber. Vettel and Rosberg's teammate, Hamilton, were more than a clear win behind (28 and 34 points respectively).

    But there his title charge hit the skids. Ninth in Germany saw Webber and Vettel close the gap right down to two and five points, and Rosberg never recovered.

    He non-scored in Hungary as his teammate stormed to victory, and while he regained some momentum with fourth and sixth in the final two rounds, the damage to his European ambitions had already been done.

3. Mark Webber

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    B/R F1 European Championship Statistics

    Points: 86

    Wins: None

    Podiums: Three

    2013 Position: Fifth

    Mark Webber might be winless in both F1's "main" and "European" championships, but he's certainly nearer the mark in B/R's iteration.

    The Australian was building some real title momentum after three rounds, when he had improved from fifth in Spain to third in Monaco and second in Britain. 

    But Rosberg had, by this time, nailed two wins at the latter two circuits to establish a strong lead, and while Webber cut that by four points in Germany, it was only by virtue of a tame run to seventh.

    A fourth in Hungary moved him ahead of the German, leaving him fourth in the standings behind Vettel, Fernando Alonso and Raikkonen but only nine points from the lead. Game on.

    Still, though, the victory would not come. He leapt ahead of Raikkonen courtesy of fifth at Spa but also slipped behind both Mercedes, while teammate Vettel moved all but out of reach heading into the finale.

    A determined run to third was rewarded as he jumped ahead of the Silver Arrows drivers in the points, but that was as good as it would get for his B/R F1 European Championship farewell. 

2. Fernando Alonso

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    B/R F1 European Championship Statistics

    Points: 104

    Wins: One

    Podiums: Four

    2013 Position: Second

    Ever the bridesmaid. He opened his European account with victory in Spain but sadly for the Ferrari man, that would be the only time he would outscore the driver (in a straight fight) who would eventually best him.

    He struggled to seventh in Monaco but was back on the podium at Silverstone. Fourth in Germany as Vettel won was then followed by fifth in Hungary with Vettel on the final step of the rostrum.

    Alonso then proved why he's the best driver not driving Adrian Newey's latest machine by claiming the best-of-the-rest honours behind Vettel in Belgium and Italy.

    Ultimately, Europe has proved to be the base for Alonso to mount yet another fight against Red Bull dominance.

    So he couldn't pull it off, so what? He's as much the people's champion as he was last year.

1. Sebastian Vettel

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    B/R F1 European Championship Statistics

    Points: 120

    Wins: Three

    Podiums: Five

    2013 Position: First

    Vettel is undoubtedly thrilled at the idea of securing B/R's prestigious European title. After all, is there anything this man cannot manipulate into a launchpad for yet more F1 dominance?

    Had he not been let down by gearbox troubles in Britain, he would have effectively been out of reach by Monza—amazing going given the championship is made up of just seven races.

    While his rivals have either varied in form or had to battle with cars that can occasionally challenge for victory, Vettel has utilised his advantage to full effect.

    Nonetheless, there's another driver on the grid who shares the same machinery. And Vettel won thrice to his nothing, on his way outscoring his teammate by 34 points despite Webber finishing seven races to the German's six.

     

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