Issue # 14

Monday December 14

Every Monday 

P40. Kimi Raikkonen

15.714 rpw / 2.315 ppr

21 wins from 330 starts. Jacques Villeneuve is right on his tail ready to push him out of the top 40 if he doesn't score at Melbourne in 2021. The gap is 0.125. 

P39. Peter Revson 

15.000 rpw / 2.100 ppr

Killed testing his Shadow race car at Kyalami in March 1974 when a poorly machined titanium ball joint in the front suspension failed. It was a new material to F1 and they hadn't mastered it. The car slammed into a Armco barrier, flipped on its nose and caught fire. Marshals on the scene pulled him from the car but he was killed on impact. Two wins from 30 starts, Peter Revson's short F1 career is littered with good results ... two points per race equates to a great deal of prize money in every era. It equates to 160 points in 2020 or fourth in the championship behind Verstappen. He spent all but seven of his starts at Teddy Mayer's McLaren team before he made the fateful decision to join Shadow in '74.

P38. Jackie Ickx

14.500 rpw / 1.655 ppr

Eight wins from 116 F1 starts, six Le Mans victories (four in the Porsche 936) and a win in the Paris-Dakar mark out the largely unsung Belgian as quality kit behind the wheel. Famously hated by Senna fans who accused him of stopping the wet 1984 Monaco GP (he was race director) to give a slowing Prost the win ... which he denied as rubbish.  

P37. Mike Hawthorn

15.000 rpw / 2.911 ppr

Britain's first world champion, he had three wins from 45 starts but his career average point scoring was equal to a top ten driver. His career average translates to 192 points in 2020 (Verstappen won 214). Consistent podiums and points won him the '58 title despite Moss winning four races to his one that year. Involved in but cleared of causing the crash that killed 83 people at Le Mans in '55 when he pulled his D - Type Jaguar late into the pits ... he was killed in '59 allegedly road racing Rob Walker's 300SL gull wing Mercedes through the English countryside. His Mk 1 Jaguar left the road, clipped a truck and crashed into a tree. He was forced into the back seat by the impact which killed him instantly. He'd been diagnosed with a terminal illness at the time and had been given less than 3 years to live. 

P36. Dennie Hulme

14.000 rpw / 2.285 ppr

Reliability and consistency won Hulme the 1967 world title with Jack Brabham's team which he quit to join compatriot Bruce McLaren's team in 1968. He was at McLaren all through the difficult early years including 1970 when Bruce McLaren was killed at Goodwood. Hulme scored eight wins from 112 starts and scored mighty points across his career.

P35. Wolfgang von Trips  

13.300 rpw / 2.203 ppr

Von Trips was leading the 1961 world championship ahead of his team mate Phil Hill when his shark nose Ferrari clipped Clark's Lotus, lost traction and crashed into the crowd at Monza killing him and 15 spectators. He'd won two of his 27 starts. His full name was Wolfgang Albert Eduard Maximilian Reichsgraf Berghe von Trips but the paddock called him Taffy. He established the go-kart track in Kerpen, Germany, where Michael Schumacher learned to race. 

 

P34. Juan Pablo Montoya

13.428 rpw / 2.563 ppr

Seven wins from 94 starts. Two times winner of the Indianapolis 500 ... he won the American CART series in his rookie year and held the record for the fastest ever F1 lap in a Williams BMW at Monza in 2004. Drove exclusively for the Williams and McLaren teams. A mixed career saw him nevertheless score an awful lot of points.

P33. Graham Hill 

12.571 rpw / 1.750 ppr

Graham Hill was two times world champion and took 14 wins from his 176 starts. He is the only driver to win the Indi 500, Le Mans, the Monaco GP and the F1 World title. He was one of the early campaigners for road safety having seen so many of his peers killed at the wheel. Damon Hill's father, he was killed in a plane crash in '75.  

P32. Ronnie Peterson

12.300 rpw / 1.764 ppr

Killed in 1978 at Monza when the starter lit the green light before the cars at the back had come to a stop causing a concertina effect in the middle of the grid. His car was clipped in the melee, crashed into the barriers and burst into flames. Ronnie was pulled from the wreck by other drivers having suffered horrific leg injuries (nearly 30 fractures). These led to a fat embolism (a blood clot caused by broken bones releasing fat into the blood stream) and he died in hospital overnight. Ten wins from 123 starts ... he drove exclusively for British teams March, Lotus and Tyrrell.   

P31. Froilan Gonzalez

13.000 rpw / 2.980 ppr

The Pampas Bull Froilan Gonzalez was one of the Argentine contingent (that included Fangio) racing in Europe in the '50s after the Peron Government was persuaded to fund the campaign ... often in customer Ferrari and Maserati. A powerfully built man who excelled in sports generally he was a favourite of Enzo Ferrari and the '50s Scuderia. Another huge points scorer. Two wins from just 26 starts ... he died aged 90 in 2013. 

P30. Carlos Reutemann  

12.166 rpw / 2.219 ppr

Twelve wins from 146 starts. One of three drivers to start from pole in their first race ... his career spanned from 1972 with Graham Hill and ended in 1982 alongside Keke Rosberg. He raced alongside Lauda, Gilles Villeneuve and Mario Andretti and with Alan Jones won Williams their first constructors title. Very handy under-rated driver.

P29. Gilles Villeneuve

11.166 rpw / 1.686 ppr

Killed during qualifying for the Belgian GP in 1982 when his car clipped the back of Jochen Mass's cruising March and flew into the air for more than a 100 metres before diving nose first into the ground and disintegrating. He remained strapped in his cockpit while the car broke up around him. The cockpit cartwheeled for another 50 metres before coming to a halt in fencing. Six wins from a 67 starts ... he was another favourite of Enzo Ferrari for his fearless and aggressive approach to race driving.

P28. Mario Andretti  

10.666 rpw / 1.500 ppr

Won 12 of his 128 F1 starts. Mario Andretti won races in most every sort of car in motor sport. He was an Indi 500 winner, four times CART champion, NASCAR champion and the 1978 F1 world champion.

 

P27. Max Verstappen  

11.900 rpw / 2.798 ppr

Verstappen's win drove him from P31 to P27. That points per race ratio is better than Lauda's but to catch Lauda here Max's win rate would need to significantly improve.

P26. Peter Collins 

10.666 rpw / 1.744 ppr

Yet another driver killed on the track ... Peter Collins lost his life at the Nurburgring in 1958. He went wide in a corner and caught his rear wheel in a ditch which flipped the car. Collins was thrown out and hit a tree causing massive head injuries. Another Enzo Ferrari favourite killed before his career had really taken off. He started just 32 races but won 3 and scored solid points.

P25. Jody Scheckter 

11.200 rpw / 2.366 ppr

 

Jody Scheckter has said his greatest achievement in F1 was to come out alive. Known as a reckless driver as a young man ... the Grand Prix Drivers Association had called on him to be banned for his driving which was causing major accidents. Francois Cevert's horrifying death is said to have settled him into a more calculating driver who went on to win the 1979 world championship for Ferrari. His P25 ahead of Collins and Andretti is down to his out point scoring both men. He did not do well enough to take the road from Emerson Fittipaldi, who described him as a "menace who did not belong in Formula One". He nevertheless took ten wins from 112 starts. 

 

P24. Emerson Fittipaldi 

10.285 rpw / 2.048 ppr

 

Two time world champion with 14 wins from 144 starts. He would have been considerably further up the grid but he went to his brother's team where he never won a race or scored significant points from its 74 starts. He went to the US CART series which he won in '89. He won the Indi 500 twice ... once when he was 46.

P23. Jochen Rindt 

10.000 rpw / 2.000 ppr

Killed at Monza driving a Lotus in the same place Von Trips was killed nine years earlier. He has been described by many who knew and raced him to be the quickest of the 1970s generation. It's believed a brake failure led to the accident but his death was attributed to poorly installed barriers. There is some talk he slid under his seat belts which slit his throat on impact. He'd done enough to win the championship which was awarded posthumously. Six wins from 60 starts ... 10/2 is where the math changes ... where the road gets steeper. One of the milestones on this grid ... if you can catch Jochen Rindt things are getting serious.

P22. Alan Jones

9.666 rpw / 1.879 ppr

First Williams world champion Alan Jones has been described by Sir Frank Williams as his favourite driver. Tough, uncompromising and blunt of speech, Mr Jones won the 1980 world drivers title and was close to it in '81. A tumultuous relationship with Carlos Reutemann saw them sabotage each others' chances. He took 12 wins from his 116 starts. He is another who would have been further up the grid had he not been tempted to return from retirement for 20 starts in under performing cars that continually suffered mechanical failure. He would have finished in P16 ahead of Hakkinen and Brabham had he stayed retired. 

P21. Fernando Alonso

9.750 rpw / 2.544 ppr

Alonso returns to the grid in 2021. The gap to James Hunt is 0.092. It's tiny. Wheel to wheel. Whether Alonso can do anything about that is hard to know. That number is deceptive. For Alonso to break into the top 20 during 2021 he will need to maintain his career average. No easy feat. It's essentially two wins a season and 5th or 6th in every other race on average. It might be a tough ask.

P20. James Hunt

9.100 rpw / 2.086 ppr

James Hunt needs no introduction here. Famous competitor of Lauda and world champion in 1976 he took ten wins from just 92 starts. 

P19. Jack Brabham

9.000 rpw / 2.253 ppr

Sir Jack Brabham, Black Jack, has 0.24 over James Hunt. The highest ranked Australian and the only driver to win in a car carrying his own name. Iconic character in Australia. He has 14 wins from just 124 starts. Handy point scorer. 

P18. Nico Rosberg

8.956 rpw / 2.412 ppr

 

As Brabham holds two tenths over Hunt so Rosberg holds two tenths over Brabham. If the father brawled the son boxed. Right on Piquet's tail. 23 wins from 206 starts.

P17. Nelson Piquet

8.869 rpw / 2.495 ppr

Outspoken, controversial and acerbic Piquet's lead over Nico Rosberg is just over a tenth. Very tight. But the gap to Hakkinen isn't. Finland's leading driver beats Piquet by nine tenths (0.932). It's a big gap. Things are getting hot in these numbers now. He also won 23 races but from 204 starts.  

P16. Mika Hakkinen

8.050 rpw / 2.608 ppr

Mika Hakkinen sits in a huge gap in the race. Mika is one of three significant and obvious milestones on this grid. The gap behind is nine tenths and the gap ahead to Lauda is 1.21. Which is huge. Note Hakkinen and Lauda have exactly the same points winning ratio. But the win rate! We note once a driver reaches 10/2 (10 race per win / 2 points per race) the road gets steeper ... the math changes it gets tougher to push on. And when you reach Lauda ... well that's another world. Mika Hakkinen took 20 wins from his 161 starts. 

P15. Niki Lauda

6.840 rpw / 2.608 ppr

Like climbing a mountain, where the higher you climb the less oxygen you have to fuel a physically tougher climb having already spent energy to get there, well that's true of this math. It's an almost perfect definition of the laws of diminishing returns. And Lauda is ... well I don't think it's a good idea to stop and rest if you catch this extraordinary Austrian. The gaps are wide and the road extremely steep from here on in. He's a tenth off Tony Brooks. 25 wins from 171 starts.

P14. Tony Brooks

6.333 rpw / 2.210 ppr

A short but extremely successful career ... for the short time he was there he more or less blew everyone away. He drove the last of the front engined 1950s cars ... the fabulous world beating Vanwalls and Ferrari's Dino 246, the first V6 F1 car that also took Hawthorn to his world title. With Stirling Moss he is one of only two drivers in the top 25 not to be world champion. Another of those drivers who saw too much death and gave racing away as a bad bet. 6 wins from 38 starts.

P13. Nigel Mansell

6.032 rpw / 2.679 ppr

 

Eight of the top 20 are Brits. Eight. Nigel probably revved the English up like few before him. Beat Piquet which might please him. Very comfortably ahead of Brooks ... seven tenths. A better win ratio than 50s great Giuseppe Farina but well off the great Italian's ability to bring home the prize money. The gap is nearly eight tenths. Took time to find his stride but once he did he disappeared down the road. 31 wins from 187 starts.

 

P12. Giuseppe Farina

6.600 rpw / 4.030 ppr

One of a number of drivers ranked here that drove in Fangio and Ascari's fumes. First world champion driving the great Alfa Romeo 158 ... he was one of the great post war drivers out of Turin. He survived the deadly 50s only to be killed in 1966 on his way to the French GP to take part in filming the movie Grand Prix. Driving a Lotus Cortina he left the road and crashed into a telephone pole. He was killed instantly aged 59. 5 wins from 33 starts.

P11. Damon Hill

5.227 rpw / 3.130 ppr

"I've got a lump in my throat," said Murray Walker ... speaking for thousands. Son of 60s great Graham Hill ... Damon was originally a motorcycle racer who hadn't expressed much interest in cars but turned his hands to them nonetheless. Sir Frank Williams famously declared him quicker than his Dad and his results don't contradict that. The 1996 world champion leads Farina by a comfortable 0.401 ... easy four tenths. But the gap up the road to Stirling Moss is 1.134. It's another massive gap to close to make the top ten here. One of only three drivers (with Vettel and Moss) to score three points per race. 22 wins from 116 starts.

P10. Stirling Moss

4.125 rpw / 3.090 ppr 

Could have been world champion but for strength of character, manners and good sportsmanship. The top ten are another world altogether from the rest. Stirling Moss trails Sebastian Vettel by only two tenths. I expect Moss to catch Vettel next year unless Seb can steal a win in the Aston Martin. 16 wins from 66 starts.

P9. Sebastian Vettel

4.849 rpw / 3.980 ppr

Seb spent most his career battling Ayrton Senna but in the last couple of years has fallen away from that fight it's nine tenths now. At 33 he has possibly 100 starts left? And of course anything can happen. The gap back to Damon Hill from Stirling Moss is great but Damon will take tenth if Vettel maintains his career trajectory beyond 2022/23. 53 wins from his 257 starts.

P8. Ayrton Senna

3.926 rpw / 4.024 ppr


Ayrton Senna is just 0.145 off Sir Jackie Stewart who is just 0.086 off his leader Alain Prost. This three way fight is the closest on the grid. 41 wins from his 161 starts. Same start count as Mika Hakkinen but twice the wins.

P7. Jackie Stewart

3.666 rpw / 3.909 ppr

Prost, Stewart and Senna are wheel to wheel separated by two tenths after a combined 459 Grand Prix. It's the equivalent of more than 90,000 miles of Formula One racing. That's nearly 4 times around the equator. Sir Jackie Stewart won 27 of his 99 races.

 

P6. Alain Prost 

3.902 rpw / 4.231 ppr

Prost, Stewart and Senna are another milestone. Once you hit 4 and 4 ... well that's what it is. 51 wins from 199 starts for the French master.

P5. Michael Schumacher

3.373 rpw / 4.348 ppr

Michael has a handy lead over Alain Prost. It's 0.646. Three tenths off Clark. 91 wins from 307 starts. Another driver whose return from retirement saw his win rate decimated. He retired from Ferrari in P2. 

P4. Jim Clark 

2.880 rpw / 4.153 ppr

Jim's lead over Michael is 0.298. But the distance to the podium is great. To get to Ascari from Clark you've got to close a gap of 1.172. 25 wins from 72 starts.

P3. Alberto Ascari

2.461 rpw / 4.906 ppr

Ascari and Lewis Hamilton are wheel to wheel. Lewis leads by only 0.084. 13 wins from just 32 starts for Ascari ... who Fangio described as his toughest competitor.

P2. Lewis Hamilton

2.789 rpw / 5.332 ppr

Ahead of Lewis Hamilton lies Juan Manuel Fangio. No-one else. It's just under 1.3.

P1. Juan Manuel Fangio

2.125 rpw / 5.941 ppr

Fangio's numbers speak for themselves. He won 24 of his 51 starts.