F1 FIGHT IS OVER BUT THE WRC IS AS CLOSE AS EVER
More points given away by Ferrari and another commanding Lewis Hamilton performance mean that the 2018 Formula 1 World Championship fight is all but over. In all likelihood, Hamilton will become just the third person to take five titles at the United States Grand Prix later this month. It was slightly surprising to see Sebastian Vettel try that move on – of all people – Max Verstappen, but in reality the Ferrari driver was already fighting a losing battle. Fortunately, one major title contest is still very much alive. The World Rally Championship arrived in the UK last week with 13 points between the top two and 23 points covering the leading trio. After another dramatic contest through the mud in Wales, Sebastien Ogier took a record-breaking fifth Rally GB victory, as David Evans explains in our report on page 34. Ogier’s success puts him within seven points of Thierry Neuville, while the unfortunate Ott Tanak is still in contention with two rounds to go, 21 points off the top. And that’s three drivers from three different teams. Not only is the WRC providing one of its greatest seasons, there will be more homegrown interest next year with the news that Kris Meeke will return (p4). Meeke’s ejection from Citroen in May after one too many crashes was dramatic, but the 39-year-old remains a rapid rally driver. Which is presumably exactly why Toyota has moved to add him to its line-up. With benchmark driver Ogier moving to the beleaguered Citroen squad and Tanak now an established championship contender, it looks as though the WRC will provide plenty of new storylines in 2019. Wonder if F1 will.