Championship clinch scenarios for Lewis Hamilton at Austin

1 Comment

It’s a near certainty that Lewis Hamilton will secure his third World Championship this weekend at Circuit of The Americas, and second consecutive for Mercedes AMG Petronas.

The maximum points available after this race will be 75 points, 25 apiece for wins at the last three races of the year at Mexico, Brazil and Abu Dhabi. If Hamilton’s gap is 76 or more, he clinches in Austin.

It’s pretty simple as to how Hamilton does it. He needs to outscore new second-place man Sebastian Vettel by nine points (he’s up 66 points on him right now), and Nico Rosberg by just two (up 73 points).

That means Hamilton wins the title with:

  • A win, Vettel third or worse and Rosberg second or worse
  • Second place, Vettel sixth or worse and Rosberg third or worse
  • Third place, Vettel eighth or worse and Rosberg fifth or worse
  • Fourth place, Vettel ninth or worse and Rosberg fifth or worse
  • Fifth place, Vettel 10th or worse and Rosberg sixth or worse

Hamilton needs a top-five finish to clinch and remote as the chances are, even if he finished sixth or worse and Vettel didn’t score points, Vettel would still be mathematically eligible headed to Mexico City next week.

The full points possibilities breakdown of the top three drivers going into Austin is linked below:

Fin. 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 10th
P # Driver Nat. Car Pts 25 18 15 12 10 8 6 4 2 1
1 44 Lewis Hamilton GB Mercedes 302 327 320 317 314 312 310 308 306 304 303
2 5 Sebastian Vettel GER Ferrari 236 261 254 251 248 246 244 242 240 238 237
3 6 Nico Rosberg GER Mercedes 229 254 247 244 241 239 237 235 233 231 230

Dale Earnhardt Jr. will race the No. 3 vs. IndyCar stars in Michigan iRacing

Leave a comment

The invite has been received, and Dale Earnhardt Jr. has another iRacing event on his schedule.

The NASCAR on NBC analyst tweeted Wednesday that he will make his debut in the IndyCar iRacing Challenge with Saturday’s race at Michigan Speedway. The race will be shown live on NBCSN at 2:30 p.m. ET Saturday.

The 2-mile oval was chosen by IndyCar drivers as the third track in the six-race series. Earnhardt heartily endorsed Michigan as a potential iRacing venue Monday along with Daytona and Talladega. Michigan nearly was selected by fans as the opener in the iRacing Challenge.

DRIVE LIKE ANDRETTI: Marco is in for Michigan

REVISED SCHEDULE: IndyCar makes 2020 adjustments

Earnhardt, a longtime avid iRacing fan, had been lobbying since last Thursday that he was interested in racing with IndyCar drivers.

He has driven in the first three races of the eNASCAR Pro Invitational, finishing second to Denny Hamlin in the opener at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

Last year, he attended his first Indianapolis 500, working as an analyst as part of NBC Sports’ inaugural broadcast of the Greatest Spectacle in Racing.

“I’d love to do it,” Earnhardt said Monday about joining the IndyCar iRacing Challenge. “I think I’d love to get to know those guys.

“I had such a great time at the Indy 500 last year, and the reception that I received from other drivers there really meant a lot to me. So I know they’re all a lot of great dudes in that series that I already know that I’d love to get to know some of them even better.”

It already has been quite the week for Earnhardt, who was announced Monday as one of 15 nominees for the 2021 NASCAR Hall of Fame.

The field for Saturday’s race at Michigan should include another  NASCAR driver in Jimmie Johnson. The seven-time Cup champion has driven the first two races of the IndyCar iRacing Challenge (and has plans to race IndyCar part time in the future).