We were treated to a fine season opener in 2017.
Ok, so there wasn’t a huge amount of overtaking, but when has Albert Park been known for huge numbers of overtakes? It is a street circuit after all, and the moves we did see were top drawer. A three-way fight through turns 15 & 16 culminating in a 3 car wide drag down the start finish straight and continued on into turns 1 & 2! Ocon, Alonso & Hulkenberg battling out like all F1 fans love to see.
But I digress. We are here to talk Back of the Grid Prediction League.
We saw 3 different predictions for each category in our testing round up episode, with only one or two “play it safe” guesses. First up..
Chris – Lewis Hamilton – Here was our first play it safe prediction, but in the long run he was right to do so and earnt a point
Tom – Kimi Raikkonen – Tom revealed a strange thing for Finns (the nation, not the things on the back of the engine cover) but it got him no where.
Stu – Sebastian Vettel – Seeing Ferrari’s testing pace as a threat along with Tom, but picking a more sensible driver, Stu came close but fell just short.
Chris – Sebastian Vettel – I want to say Stu and I inspired this choice with our Ferrari optimism, regardless, it was Chris who bagged the point again!
Tom – Valtteri Bottas – The Finnish Fascination continued as Tom went with Bottas, but to no avail.
Stu – Lewis Hamilton – Not confident his pole choice of Vettel could see out a win Stu went Hamilton and was unlucky to have picked to correct drivers the wrong way around!
Chris – Fernando Alonso – Chris & Stu went for McLaren break downs, and Stu’s came in, but unfortunately not before Tom’s.
Tom – Lance Stroll – Maybe first corner crash over mechanical retirement, if not first overall, Stroll was first of the 3 choice to go bagging Tom half a point.
Stu – Stoffel Vandoorne – Stu didnt have a good weekend in the prediction league. His retirement was the only one of the 3 to actually finish!
Random Driver – Daniil Kvyat
Chris – 12th – A difficult call for all of an ok driver in a midfield car. Chris clearly thinking Kvyat would still be in his 2016 rut
Tom – 10th – A modest point finish predicted by Tom and almost spot on with Kvyat coming home 9th and earning another half point.
Stu – 7th – Luck failed Stu again here as Kvyat was running 7th before having to pit for more air (!?) towards the end of the race causing him to drop 2 places.
Number of Finishers
Chris – 18 – Thinking everyone is on top of the engine tech now, minus McLaren Honda, Chris clearly thought they’d be the only 2 not to finish.
Tom – 16 – First race of the season, new cars (aerodynamically at least) & new young drivers spells retirements, and Tom was right to go with the lowest finisher count and earnt a half point for being closest to the actual 13 finishers.
Stu – 17 – Stu went slap bang in the middle of both guesses with no success and comes away from the weekend with a big fat zero on the scoreboard.
So with that Chris leads the way after race one with a couple of spot on guesses, but Tom keeps him honest with closest guesses in the final 3 categories. Stu, well the less said the better we think.
Remember to listen to our Chinese Grand Prix preview in the build up to the race weekend, and why not join in with the prediction game by commenting below, or letting us know your predictions via @BackOfTheGridF1 on Twitter or Facebook!