Could F1's 'kingmakers' tradition impact the 2021 title battle?
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Could F1's 'kingmakers' tradition impact the 2021 title battle?

By:
, Roger Smith

OPINION: The nail-biting Formula 1 title battle between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton has been billed as a straight fight between the two best drivers on the grid. It may not be as simple as let the best man win, as history tells us that a number of others on the grid could have a say in the world title destiny

As 2021’s nip-and-tuck Formula 1 title battle counts down, and DNF anxieties ramp up, it’s worth a glance beyond power unit reliability to anticipate the deciding factor.

The Turkish Grand Prix demonstrated perfectly how a team’s number two driver can deny points to a rival contender. But F1 history informs us that occasionally circumstances conspire for the ‘wingman’ to be the final arbiter in the crowning of a champion, relinquishing track position at the season finale and thereby donating the requisite points that guarantee the crown for their contender team-mate. Here’s a reminder of F1’s four kingmakers over the decades, with a certain Italian team conspicuously prominent.

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