Formula 1 2009 Drivers: The Mid Season Changes
With the Abu Dhabi race at the Yas Marina concluded, it's that time of year when the Formula 1 season is reviewed, evaluated, and discussed.
It's been a major year for F1 with new rule changes, various scandals in the sport from Lewis Hamilton's "lie-gate" to the Renault scandal.
Also, there was much talk midway through the season of F1 having a major split with all but two of the teams wanting to switch to their own FOTA series which could have resulted in F1, as we know it, dying.
Here are the Mid Season Changes who played a small part in the season. From Piquet Jr to Badoer, these are the guys who were ditched and brought into teams mid season.
Nelson Piquet Jr: Twenty First (0 Points)
At the start of the season the odds were that Piquet would be the first driver to be sacked.
So it was no surprise after Hungary that Piquet had been given the chop.
In truth he hadn't handled himself well in races and wrongly or rightly didn't have the support of the team.
However Piquet famous this season for the wrong reasons as news came out of his part in the Renault crash scandal from Singapore last year.
It was an act he should never have committed and his time in the sport should be over. A poor reflection on his father.
Vitantonio Liuzzi: Twenty Second (0 Points)
When Fisichella moved to Ferrari, Force India rightfully promoted Liuzzi into the vacant race seat
Liuzzi did alright in the job and in his first race back at Monza was running inside the points before a transmission problem caused him to retire.
He looks a reliable driver and finished in the last four races of the season.
V.J. Maliya has said that he'd want one day to have an Indian driver on the team, but that talent has to come before that.
Karun Chandhok could well do with another year in GP2 but whether Liuzzi has done enough to earn a seat isn't for certain
Romain Grosjean: Twenty Third (0 Points)
It's been a tough time for the French driver since he replaced Piquet ahead of the race in Valencia.
He'd perhaps admit that he hasn't got the best out of the car, but in truth this year's Renault has been poor.
Only an experienced driver in Alonso could achieve anything in it so perhaps the criticism of Grosjean isn't fair.
GP2 might be a good option for him next year to focus on a seat in 2011.
Jaime Alguersuari: Twenty Fourth (0 Points)
The youngest F1 driver in history was always going to find life difficult.
The 2008 British F3 Champion probably wouldn't have imagined he'd have been racing in F1 in 2010—yet alone 2009 so its unfair to criticize him.
Yes he made mistakes but it was a huge learning experience for him with no testing experience under his belt.
His mistake of trying to pit in the wrong box in Abu Dhabi was embarrassing but the team have a long term plan for him.
Luca Badoer: Twenty Fifth (0 Points)
Last and definitely least is Badoer who replaced Massa after Hungary in the wake of Michael Schumacher pulling out due to neck problems.
It was nice of Ferrari to reward Badoer for his loyalty to the team by naming him as Massa's replacement.
However with the testing ban and the fact he hadn't raced in F1 almost a decade, it was perhaps misjudged loyalty.
Badoer sadly looked out of depth and didn't improve in Spa earning him the nasty nickname of Luca Bad-you-are.