What Verstappen and Leclerc have to do in Abu Dhabi to get 3rd in the championship

25-11-2019 16:15
by Nicolás Quarles van Ufford
General
What Verstappen and Leclerc have to do in Abu Dhabi to get 3rd in the championship

With one more race to go in the 2019 F1 season, first and second place in the drivers' championship have been settled, but third place is still up for grabs for two drivers; here is what both Max Verstappen and Charles Leclerc have to do to get P3.

The difference

As it stands, Verstappen is 11 points clear of Leclerc. Coming into the Brazilian Grand Prix weekend, Leclerc was the one who was 14 points clear, but his retirement combined with Verstappen's win at Interlagos has completely flipped the script.

Driver Points Wins
Lewis Hamilton 387 10
Valtteri Bottas  314 4
Max Verstappen 260 3
Charles Leclerc 249 2
Sebastian Vettel 230 1

As you can see in the table, it will take a gargantuan effort from Leclerc to leapfrog the Dutchman again. Especially since Verstappen has more wins than the Monegasque, which would give him the edge should they draw level on points.

What needs to happen

Verstappen would only really be in trouble if either he retires from the race himself or if Leclerc wins the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. If Verstappen does indeed not finish the race, fourth place would be enough for Leclerc as he'd receive 12 points, giving him the edge by a single point.

In the highly likely scenario that Verstappen finishes within the top six, Leclerc simply needs to win and keep his Dutch rival off the podium, something which seems tough with Verstappen's recent form. 

If Verstappen finished first or second, it's over no matter what. Should Leclerc win and take the fastest lap, however, a P3 or lower from Max would give Leclerc the edge. All a bit complex, so here is a table with all the scenario's in which Leclerc would get third place in the championship.

Leclerc

P1 + FL (26 pts)

P3 (15 pts) Verstappen
Leclerc P1 (25 pts) P4 (12 pts) Verstappen
Leclerc P2 (18 pts) P7 (6 pts) Verstappen
Leclerc P3 + FL (16 pts) P8 (4 pts) Verstappen
Leclerc P3 (15 pts) P9 (2 pts) Verstappen
Leclerc P4 + FL (13 pts) P10 (1 pt) Verstappen
Leclerc P4 (12 pts) P11 (0 pts) Verstappen

Poll

Who will get P3 in the championship?

(319 votes)

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