Formula One Offers a Lesson in Perseverance
This season has been like no other, sometimes because of outside influences that affected the world as much as the sport and sometimes where the sport affected the world.
The 2007 season ended in a last-race showdown, but it was mired in industrial espionage, however, it was still another showdown between a McLaren driver and Scuderia Ferrari's hired gun, Kimi Raikkonen.
Ferrari walked away with both championships, thanks to an FIA ruling that stripped McLaren of all of their constructor's points. This was really the beginning of the 2008 season.
How can you narrow down the season for just a quick read? So much has happened since the green light in Melbourne that if you just try and condense a season you just end up with a lumpy puddle of words and names. Hardly the way to treat such a fantastic sport; if only the politics of it were not such a large part of this season.
Several key figures off the track made more noise than the engines this year. Max Mosely's private sexual exploits came to public light. Unknown stewards at Canada, Spa, and Japan changed the overall outcome and fanned the flames of preferential treatment. Inconsistency was the rule this year for the FIA and interpretations of the rulebook.
On the track, several drivers made names for themselves. Robert Kubica gave BMW their first win. Sebastian Vettel and Toro Rosso won at a rain-soaked Monza. Fernando Alonso came alive mid-season and gave the underdog some teeth. Kimi Raikkonen never came to grips with the F2008 chassis and was never competitive.
Then we come to the two main protagonists of this season: Felipe Massa and Lewis Hamilton.
Two drivers are a mile apart in personality and driving style. Two drivers riding in the two most sought after seats in F1; Ferrari and McLaren. Two teams that were no stranger to battle.
Throughout the season, each driver showed their personal weaknesses and the weaknesses of their team. The two teams both slowly honed their sharp daggers for the final battle; a battle that both teams knew only one would live through.
This year, it was the dagger of McLaren and Lewis Hamilton that found the heart of Felipe Massa and Ferrari. It dug deep and hard at the last possible second. It showed no mercy.
Some say it was vindication and some say it was a lucky shot. I say it was fate or destiny; fate if you are of Tifosi, and destiny if you are the victorious. Regardless, both teams were perfectly honed for battle; neither made a mistake. That's something every F1 fan can be proud of this year.
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