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How Lewis Hamilton can become F1 world champion at the USGP

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Following his eighth victory of the season on Sunday in Japan, Lewis Hamilton can mathematically clinch his fourth Formula 1 world championship in two weeks’ time at the United States Grand Prix.

Hamilton wrapped up his third title in 2015 at the Circuit of The Americas in Austin, Texas (pictured), having enjoyed an edge on Mercedes’ teammate Nico Rosberg throughout the season.

Hamilton’s advantage has been much, much smaller this year, only for a collapse from Ferrari and Sebastian Vettel to put him on the brink of winning the title in Austin.

59 points clear with four races and 100 points to go, Hamilton needs to be 75 ahead after the USGP to wrap up the title with three races to spare.

To win the title in Austin, Hamilton needs to outscore Vettel by 16 points. Even if Vettel were to finish tied on points at the end of the year by winning all of the following three races, Hamilton would win it by virtue of having more victories.

There are two ways for Hamilton to achieve this in Austin:

  • If Hamilton wins the race (25 points) and Vettel finishes sixth or lower (maximum eight points), he is world champion.
  • If Hamilton finishes second (18 points) and Vettel finishes ninth or lower (maximum two points), he is world champion.

If Hamilton does not finish in the top two in Austin, the title race will continue to Mexico regardless of where Vettel finishes.

While Hamilton is by no means guaranteed to be crowned champion at COTA, Mercedes does look set to wrap up its fourth straight constructors’ title with three races to spare.

Mercedes currently leads Ferrari by 145 points and needs a lead of 129 after Austin to clinch the title. Ferrari must therefore outscore it by 17 points just to keep the title race alive for another round.

Put simply, even if Ferrari were to score a one-two, Mercedes would secure the title by finishing third and fourth (43 – 27 = 16).

Takuma Sato’s likeness revealed on Borg-Warner Trophy (PHOTOS)

Photos; Walt Kuhn
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INDIANAPOLIS – Rather than the traditional December unveil, this year’s reveal newest likeness added to the Borg-Warner Trophy came Tuesday at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum.

Takuma Sato got to see the result of the sculpting done by William Behrends and then turned from wax, clay and ceramic into sterling silver on Tuesday evening, as the winner of the 101st Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil saw his face revealed on the trophy.

Sato took the No. 26 Ruoff Home Mortgage Honda for Andretti Autosport to the win in thrilling fashion this year over Helio Castroneves, denying the Brazilian his fourth Indianapolis 500 victory in the process. It atoned for his near-miss in 2012, driving for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing, the team he’ll return to in 2018.

It’s been a whirlwind last week-plus for Sato, doing the podium interviews at the Japanese Grand Prix, reflecting on his Indianapolis 500 triumph, then sharing the victory spoils with another Japanese pilot in Yoshihide Muroya, who won the Red Bull Air Race World Championship at Indianapolis this weekend.

Photos of Sato’s face on the most unique trophy in sports are below. This post will be updated following tonight’s full unveil. (All photos: Walt Kuhn)