Michael beats Alonso, Renault beat Ferrari, and ITV lose

Will Michael get any satisfaction, sitting on his flight back home, from knowing he beat Alonso fairly today, and that it was only his car that let him down? (Whereas when Alonso failed at Monza, he was behind Michael). I doubt it. This is the way of Formula 1. Michael knows that. You could see it on his face as he trudged back to the pits to shake the hands of all of his mechanics. He had done his best, but it didn’t matter. He had driven to win when it didn’t seem possible in China, and he had a (uneasy) 5 second gap to Alonso and looked like maintaining it to the end. He had, you might say, won the championship on lap 34.

But on lap 35 ITV went, quite understandably, to an advertisement break. Nothing, after all, was going to happen now until the end of the race. Once again, however, they missed a crucial moment in F1 history. Schumacher goes out of the race, and out of the sport, in his first Ferrari engine failure since 2001. This anticlimax to the season will also mean that the next race, which due to its evening slot was bound to draw huge viewing figures, will be watched by only the true fans, and the truly insane Schumacher-lovers who think he can still do it…

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