The word “second” has suddenly got an amazing importance for Brazil in the Formula One championship this week, after the Spa Francorchamps race, in Belgium. Let me show you why:
- Felipe Massa, Ferrari’s team brazilian driver, has guarded safely the second position in the driver’s championship for, at least, one race. Also, he is only two points behind the leader, McLaren’s Lewis Hamilton.
This approach has happened because Massa, who finished the last race in second place, inherited the victory after the checkered flag because the actual winner, Hamilton, got a penalty for cutting the chicane and getting advantage improperly. Click here to see Hamilton’s maneuver.
After Massa’s lucky day, Ferrari started to rediscuss the team’s strategy from now until the end of the championship (only five races left), in order to possibly change Massa’s status from second driver to first driver, since Kimi Räikkönen, his team companion, lost important points to fight for the trophy.
There’s been a lot of arguments in the web trying to answer if Hamilton’s penalty was or wasn’t fair. Personally, I believe it wasn’t. I’m totally in favor of “agressive” driving in F1, to avoid races becoming a car parade. Also, I don’t think the british driver commited any foul.
That said, the main reason of this post is: Felipe Massa has a real chance of winning the championship after last weekend. And, if the competition stays balanced like it has been so far, the title may be decided here, in Brazil, home of the last race of the season.
Can you imagine the thrill it will be for us if Massa decides the title with Hamilton in Brazil? I can’t wait.
It’s interesting to see that a brazilian driver has finally reached a good point count in the near-end of the season. I’m thrilled, some people are also. But I must say that I’ve seen Brazil’s REAL thrill when the subject was F1. You probably know about who I’m talking about.
That’s right: Mr. Ayrton Senna.
It’s a fact: from his tragical and unforgettable death until today, F1 has never been the same for brazilians. I remember the years that followed 1994, and they were sad, even with our national soccer team winning the World Cup that same season (even the soccer team paid an homage to Ayrton Senna after the final whistle of the title-winning match)
Sundays lost their morning fun (morning for us) and F1 reached an aversion level never seen here. It couldn’t be other way. In a day, we had a three-time world champion, charismatic, patriotic and brave in tracks driver. In the next, we didn’t. Also, we watched live that terrible wall in Tamburelo’s turn getting near and near Senna’s Williams. 14 years later, I can’t write this without getting a little uncomfortable.
Felipe Massa knows that. He, himself, says that Senna was his personal idol, and his death marked him forever. But now, the young driver has a chance to carve his name in our driving history and start to give us back that glow on our faces when someone starts talking about Formula One.
Let’s wait to see if Massa will have the honor of sharing a place in the hall of champions with the one and only Ayrton Senna do Brasil (“do Brasil” means “of Brazil”).
For now, click here if you want to feel the energy of Mr. Ayrton Senna’s victory in Brazil, back in 1993 (english subtitles). The jingle song that starts right after he crosses the line, named “Victory Anthem” and created specially for him, is played until today when a brazilian driver crosses the line in the first position, or any other sports person or team wins anything. It’s a touching song for us.
Check the first 10 drivers classification with five races to go:
To view the entire table, click here.
To visit the official F1 website, click here.
To see several Ayrton Senna’s videos, click here.
To watch Felipe Massa’s victory in Brazil 2006, click here.
To read someone in favor of Hamilton’s penalty, click here.
To read someone against it, click here.