Tweet from @alo_oficial: For some reason we are fighting the world championship that logic would say was impossible. Enjoy today and whatever happens.. Thank you all
The grid is super important then, we've got an all-McLaren front row, with Vettel starting fourth and Alonso starting seventh.
|3||M Webber||Red Bull|
|4||S Vettel||Red Bull|
|6||N Hülkenberg||Force India|
|10||P Di Resta||Force India|
Pastor Maldonado did qualify in sixth place, but picked up a reprimand for missing the weighbridge in qualifying. Three reprimands this year, and that turns into a ten place grid drop.
Tweet from @Official_SF1Team: There are more and more dark clouds ... Track temperature is 25 degrees, air temp is 20 with increasing humidity (63 %). Will it rain?
Sauber are pushing to overtake Mercedes in the championship, they need twelve points to overhaul them for fifth place.
Interview with Sebastian Vettel: "There might be some excitement during the race with showers, we don't know. Maybe even now. We'll have to take it as it comes. I think we have a great car, we were competitive all weekend, McLaren may be a bit faster but in race pace we know it can be a bit closer."
Interview with Fernando Alonso: "We know that in normal conditions fighting for the championship would be very difficult. Rain, no rain, whatever happens it will come. It's very difficult to change now, destiny, let's say. I hope people will enjoy. To have any chance we need to be on the podium and we start seventh... it's out of our hands probably."
Comment from Stuart Taylor: "I need an FBFB gap-analysis between me and the edge of my seat"
As well as Maldonado further down the order, Romain Grosjean is also starting in the mix. He had a collision with an HRT during qualifying which means he starts 18th.
Another battle to look out for is with the "new" teams. Marussia have that coveted tenth place in the standings, with Caterham desperate to take it back.
It'd require a twelfth place finish from Caterham to take the tenth place back - they have Petrov starting 19th and Kovalainen 20th.
Tweet from @adamcooperf1: #F1 Still cold, grey and overcast but no sign of that rain. Paddock full to bursting, amazing vibe
Michael Schumacher starts his last race before his second (and probably last!) retirement. He didn't have a great qualifying, 13th on the grid, but there's talk of a wet setup for the Mercedes.
The pitlane is open, and the cars are pouring out to make their way to the grid.
Tweet from @radarguruf1: #F1 radar 13:26 BRST: No change. The radar is clear to the west and south-west. Outside chance of drizzle during the race. Should stay dry.
The only real concern that Red Bull have at the moment, barring any unforseen crashing, is the reliability of the Renault alternators. They've had more than their fair share of retirements at the hands of those pesky pieces, including Mark Webber last weekend.
Webber arrives at the grid and climbs swiftly from the car. Vettel remains in the cockpit for a little while longer.
Michael Schumacher had a quick pit stop there for the team to secure a flag to the side of the car - it's got some chequered stripes on and reads "Thank you."
Interview with Hamilton on the grid: "It's going to be a tough race, we don't know what the weather is going to do. Almost every year I've come here, it's decided to rain on the grid. Who knows what will happen in the next five minutes. Trying to keep the emotions out of it at the moment, concentrate on the job."
Schumacher says thank you.
McLaren have just brought out an umbrella to cover up the cockpit of one of their cars.
Interview with Jenson Button: "We both did a good job in qualifying, the car felt really good, a lot of fun to drive. The weather is all over the place, but that's pretty normal here. As soon as the cars come out, and the fumes, it brings the rain."
Some live timing might be handy for you, if you like that kind of thing: http://www.formula1.com/live_timing/live_timing.html
Interview with Nico Rosberg: "It was okay, top ten, we're looking quite okay for race pace if it stays dry especially. On Friday I could keep up with the guys in front, maybe I can get some points today."
Ten minutes to go until race time. Make your final predictions: https://sidepodcast.com/post/brazil-2012-predict-race
The grid is packed with mechanics, a few umbrellas over the top of the cockpits, and a few drops on the cameras.
Five minutes now. We're not counting down the seconds, honestly.
51% have voted for Sebastian Vettel to win the championship. That's much closer than I thought!
56% say there will be only one safety car.
The winner of the race is predicted to be Lewis Hamilton, with 59% of the votes.
Tweet from @TheFifthDriver: Weather update: this light rain will continue for 15 minutes.
The tyre blankets are coming off and the grid is starting to clear with just essential personnel remaining.
Team radio to Räikkönen: "Only three cars on primes, Romain, Schumacher and one of the HRTs. Everyone else on options."
The formation lap is underway, Lewis Hamilton leading the pack off the grid.
Medium and hard tyres. Try telling them apart!
Hamilton pulls to a stop, as Charlie Whiting watches on from his Race Control booth.
Great start by Hamilton, clean start for everyone in the first two corners.
The Red Bulls got away really badly, as the Ferraris stormed forward. Massa is up into second!
Vettel has crashed!
He's going again but he is last.
Team radio to Vettel: "I think I have damage, I'm coming in."
So, for now, let's go with Hamilton leading. Alonso storms through at the first corner of the second lap to move up to second.
Team radio to Vettel: "Sebastian, there is visible damage, but stay out to see how the car behaves. We cannot fix it."
Alonso is third now, behind the two McLaren drivers.
Senna and Pérez are both out of their cars at the side of the track. We'll find out what happened shortly.
Nico Hülkenberg passes Mark Webber for fourth position, Webber doesn't seem to have any pace at the moment.
Race Control: DRS enabled.
More Vettel radio, describes the data from the car as okay. And he sets the fastest lap of the race so far - early days of course, but the Red Bull might be okay.
Replays now. Nothing happened at the first two corners, except the poor Red Bull start and the amazing Ferrari start.
It was a great start from Massa to move up to second, but he's dropped back now to sixth.
Vettel lost a ton of places into the first corner.
Räikkönen locks up into the third or fourth corner, but runs wide to avoid the cars. On the inside, Senna clipped the side of Vettel.
Then Senna mounted Pérez after that, hence them both being out of the race.
It looks like Vettel only got a light tap, a bit of carbon fibre missing but not much. It's just that he ended up pointing in the wrong direction.
Back to the live action, Fernando Alonso has run really wide, he's lost momentum with Webber close behind him.
He's lost the crucial third place required to Hülkenberg, but has managed to hold off Webber for fourth for now.
Replays show Alonso was close to spinning but fought the car to remain pointing in the right direction. It could have been more costly. For now, he's fourth.
Felipe Massa has overtaken Webber, which will help Alonso for the moment.
It's a real train of cars behind Massa now, he may be the best second driver in existence!
Romain Grosjean is off into the barriers.
At the front Button is challenging Hamilton for the lead, intense battle between the two McLarens.
Webber has spun now, what is going on??
Meanwhile, Sebastian Vettel is up to ninth. This is crucial.
Replays to the rescue. Slow Webber got bunched up and got hit by Kobayashi, spun round with front wing damage to one of the cars.
Grosjean just lost control of the car, spun off into the barriers.
Vettel has passed Nico Rosberg, he's up to eighth place now.
We are still under yellow flag conditions.
Jenson Button passes Hamilton to move into the lead of the race.
Vettel is up to seventh now, it won't be long before he passes Kobayashi for sixth. Incredible driving from the German.
Track is clear.
Kovalainen is up to 11th place, this is crucial for the Caterham tenth place battle!!
In all the action, Räikkönen is near the rear of the field having pitted. Schumacher has also stopped once, and is back in the pits for a second time.
Schumacher has left the pitlane on the intermediate tyres. Webber has come in as the guinea pig for Red Bull, inters on the car.
Hamilton has pitted, there's a delay on that right rear.
Alonso and Vettel both come in.
Button's team radio suggests he thinks it's stopping raining, he stays out and doesn't want inters!
So, Button leads Hülkenberg and then Massa - these three have not yet pitted. Hamilton is fourth having stopped for intermediates.
Hamilton has overtaken Massa, that moves him up to third.
Vettel has moved past Webber, after coming out of the pits behind him. They are now 14th and 15th.
Alonso is sitting in ninth... which is not in the top three.
Yellow flags as Charles Pic runs wide.
Team radio to Webber: "Thank you Mark."
We all know what that means.
Alonso is up to fourth now, with Hamilton just ahead of him.
Glock and Petrov pit from 15th and 16th.
Team radio from Hamilton: "These tyres are going off."
Hamilton is struggling on his tyres, but replays show Alonso finding grip, sailing past drivers to his current position.
|J Button||vs.||N Hülkenberg|
Felipe Massa has pitted for the intermediate tyres, green stripes going on that red car. What a clash of colours.
Hülkenberg gets alongside Button into the first corner, but the McLaren keeps it for now.
Meanwhile, on the pit wall, Adrian Newey has procured a picture of the damage to Vettel's car, blown up and printed out for him to study.
Pedro de la Rosa moves out of the way as the battling pair of Button and Hülkenberg sweep past.
Hamilton's instructed he'll need to keep his tyres for the next 30 minutes as the rain is expected to continue, but Lewis says they're already finished.
Hülkenberg loves this track! He moves past Button for the lead of the race.
Disregard that radio message, Hamilton comes into the pitlane for slick tyres.
Alonso is back in the pits now, dry tyres for everyone it seems.
Vettel didn't come in that lap, though. Kobayashi, Rosberg and Di Resta all made a stop.
Vettel is instructed to come into the pitlane now, and the Red Bull mechanics scramble with tyres.
It's a double stop for Red Bull as Webber follows into the pitlane as Vettel exits.
Alonso rounds the first corner as Vettel exits the pitlane, the Ferrari remains ahead.
Nico Rosberg is circling the track with a right rear puncture, that tyre is disintegrating. Contact somewhere?
Hülkenberg sets the fastest lap of the race so far, 1:21.175 - he has not stopped at all yet, he's still on the same dry tyres he started on.
A super slo-mo of Vettel's car shows a dented and exposed exhaust system.
Alonso's calling for a safety car due to debris on the track. There's some carbon fibre on track that presumably caused Rosberg's puncture.
Safety car deployed.
Comment from Stuart Taylor: Safety Car! Phew, we can catch our breath
Hülkenberg and Button have both had what amounts to a free stop under the safety car.
|8||2||P Di Resta||2|
Phew, a moment to do a top ten!
In backmarker news, Kovalainen has fallen to 16th position. Petrov is up to 14th, but Glock is up to 12th. Not what Caterham are after.
Newey studies a photo of the damage to Vettel's car. The man is dedicated!
Race Control: Lapped cars may now overtake.
Retirements so far then: Grosjean, Maldonado, Senna and Pérez. Wait a minute, when did we lose Maldonado?
Tweet from @WilliamsF1Team: Pastor lost rear end grip and hit wall, he's back and ok but disappointed to end season like that
FOM have handily given us a transcription of Alonso's foreign language radio - it's starting to rain again.
The official team radar: "Drops at the moment. Next light rain expected 15:00."
The Safety Car does have its windscreen wipers going.
Race Control: Safety Car in this lap.
Hülkenberg locked up into that corner, the McLaren behind him also issuing some tyre smoke. The Safety Car comes in.
Hulk gets a good start and leads the pack away.
Two Red Bulls and Kobayashi were all side by side, with Webber running wide into turn three.
Vettel remains on track, but Kobayashi is ahead of him.
Race Control: DRS enabled.
Hulk locks up again going into turn one.
Hamilton pulls alongside Button and then sweeps past as Button locks up a little.
Massa attempts a move on Di Resta on the inside, who left him enough space, thank goodness. The Ferrari driver backed off though.
Kobayashi has sailed past Alonso to move up to fourth.
With both Mercedes drivers out of the points for now, Sauber have all their hopes on Kobayashi.
Di Resta has lost two places in one lap, and is about to lose a place to Räikkönen as well.
Alonso takes his place back from Kobayashi, back up to fourth. The Sauber driver has a bit of a moment to allow Alonso some breathing space.
Vettel is behind the Sauber driver, now hunting him down.
Felipe Massa goes to the outside of Vettel to move into sixth place, Vettel down to seventh.
So we now have Hulk leading Hamilton and Button. Alonso is third, with Kobayashi, Massa and then Vettel.
Alonso needs to be on the podium for any chance at the championship, so Vettel doesn't need to worry at the moment.
Halfway through the race. Only halfway!
Massa loses the rear slightly into turn eight, but catches it to keep control. He's chasing Kobayashi.
Hamilton sets the fastest lap of the race so far, 1:18.300.
Felipe Massa surges forward to overtake Kobayashi, he's now fifth behind Alonso.
Replays show Di Resta having a spin at turn twelve, he waits for the train behind him to pass before righting the car and moving onwards.
Petrov is now sitting in 13th, directly behind that errant Force India of Di Resta. One more position, and Caterham would be happy again.
After an exceptionally long chase up the hill and down the main straight, Kimi refuses to back down an overtake on Schumacher and gets the final points position.
Interview with Bruno Senna: "Had a good start, everything was go well. I was beside of Di Resta into turn four. Vettel just went straight across the track from his position, hit me and there was nothing to do. Pretty big hit and damaged the car too much."
Reports suggest the misty weather is moving in again, not as heavy as before but some drizzle.
Tweet from @OfficialSF1Team: #Checo is back. He says he doesn't really know himself what happened after start. He went to the inside to avoid others and then got hit
Mark Webber had a marvellous drift into the final hill, but continued on unscathed, just a bit of lost time.
Replays show Kobayashi running wide, which allowed Vettel to close up and get within DRS range. He's not made the move yet.
Hamilton is closing in on Hülkenberg in front, the gap down to 1.4, as the Force India reports some downshifting issues.
Petrov still sits in 13th place, he has Schumacher ahead of him with the gap just under five seconds.
Never mind. Petrov has spun it and lost several places. Pic is up to 13th now.
Hamilton has moved into the lead of the race. We had brief yellow flags which must have been Hulk.
On braking, he lost the rear end with the Force India just losing the place at turn 8. Hamilton moved into the lead as Hulk recovered.
Interview with Sergio Pérez: "Very sad, I just run into turn four, I had a really godo start, gaining some positions into the first corner. I was on in the inside to try and avoid contact, and then everyone came into me - Bruno and Sebastian. Very sad way to end the season like that, I hope Kamui can keep this up for the team."
We're seeing lots of arty shots of the degradation on tyres now - drivers don't want to stop for fresh tyres until the rain situation is more clear.
Vettel's radio appears to have failed, the team instructing him to move the microphone if he can.
Rosberg has come in for a stop, intermediate tyres going on the Mercedes car. They have nothing to lose, but that's a big gamble.
Ricciardo comes in for a stop, and it's the dry tyres going on the Toro Rosso.
Team radio to Vettel: "You're doing the same lap times as Alonso, everyone is struggling. Hang in there."
Vettel comes into the pits, the mechanics have the medium compound to go on his car.
Track is clear.
Replays show it was Räikkönen who ran wide off track, massively wide, navigating onto the old circuit. He had to spin round and come all the way back, run over the grass and continue up the hill.
Kimi runs wide again at the same corner, going up the hill. He heads into the pitlane.
Yellow flags as Hulkenberg and Hamilton crash.
Hülkenberg was making a move on Hamilton, and there was a Caterham in the way into turn one. Hulk had the inside but couldn't control it into turn one, losing control and sliding into Lewis.
Hamilton has his front left hanging off, but after a moment off track, he continued onwards.
Vettel has pitted again for intermediate tyres.
He has pulled off track again, race over for Hamilton.
Felipe Massa has pitted again, as Alonso continues onwards. He's made a mistake by not pitting, he almost loses it but keeps control just.
Track is clear.
Vettel's stop was massively long, they didn't have the tyres ready for him. It took a mechanic ages to unwrap the intermediates and get the car going again.
Alonso made it back to the pits for his intermediate tyres. Where will he come out?
Race Control: Drive through penalty for Hülkenberg - causing a collision.
Button pits from the lead of the race now.
Vettel moves past Kobayashi, who ran a bit wide on the damp track. It's 8th place for Vettel now.
Hülkenberg has pitted for a tyre change, he still has to take his drive through penalty.
More replays show some carbon fibre coming off the back of Seb's car and flying up into the air.
Hülkenberg comes back into the pitlane for his drive through penalty. A team member urges him on with a wave from the pitwall.
You can just see the bit of car disappearing behind Vettel.
It's really starting to rain now.
Button leads Massa, Alonso and Webber. Hülkenberg is fifth with Schumacher and then Vettel in seventh.
Lewis walks down the damp pitlane to the garage, gives the team a hug and disappears into the back. Disappointing end to his McLaren career.
Kovalainen pits from 16th place. We have Petrov back up to 14th, but crucially, Pic is still in 13th.
The switch happens at Ferrari, with Alonso moving past Massa to second place. This is where Ferrari need to be, but Vettel is still in the points and leading the championship.
Ricciardo has pitted again, he put the wrong tyres on just now, and is having to switch to the intermediates.
Vettel is instructed that this position is "good enough" but does Vettel care about good enough?
Ahead of him is Michael Schumacher, with about two seconds in it.
|C Pic||vs.||V Petrov|
Schumacher puts up no fight at all as Vettel moves past him for sixth place.
Alonso now needs to win.
Button has backed off a bit in the lead, the gap is down to 20 seconds.
As Alonso was lapping Pic and Petrov, the Caterham driver got through and passed the Marussia. That's 12th for Petrov.
Just five laps remaining.
Paul di Resta overtakes Vergne for ninth place.
Vettel instructed over the radio that his pace is good, and he just needs to keep it on the black stuff.
Yellow flags as Kobayashi spins off track.
Track is clear.
Replays show he made an optimistic move on Schumacher, they touched wheels and Kobayashi spun. He has continued in tenth place.
Yellow flags as Paul di Resta is in the wall.
Safety car deployed.
It was a big crash, as replays show he lost control in the damp and just bashed into the wall. Di Resta climbs out of the car okay.
Safety Car finish then, disappointing end to the race. But what a race!
Di Resta in the wall.
Jenson Button wins the Brazilian Grand Prix!!
The Safety Car pulled off to allow Button to cross the line - slowest finish ever.
Sebastian Vettel wins the 2012 F1 World Championship!
Also worth pointing out that Vitaly Petrov finished the race 11th for Caterham, giving them that crucial tenth place in the championship. Pic was 12th.
The media come rushing in as Vettel returns to the pitlane and climbs from his car. Big hugs between him and Schumacher.
Fernando Alonso goes straight to his team to congratulate/commiserate with them all.
All the drivers congratulating Vettel - Heikki, Schumacher and Ricciardo all giving a clap on the back.
Button and Alonso are already at the pre-podium room, putting on their hats and chatting calmly. Alonso looks glum but okay. Vettel needs to jog to the podium now, with a wave to the fans.
Massa is in tears on the podium in front of the home fans. A really strong third place finish for him.
Button raises his trophy, his win overshadowed by the champion celebrations but he's still happy.
Alonso kisses his second place trophy and raises it with a resigned smile. Massa is still in floods of tears, bless him.
Button, the winner.
Podium quotes - Jenson Button: "First of all, I want to congratulate the whole team. This is the perfect way for us to end the season. We started on a high, we had ups and downs, to end on a high is fantastic. It bodes very well for 2013, so congratulations guys. We fought for second in the constructors today, but these two were just a little bit too strong. Thank you very much."
Podium quotes - Fernando Alonso: "First of all, I feel very proud of my team, of the season we did. We lost the championship now, but I don't think we lost it here in Brazil, we lost it in some races where we were a bit unlucky. But this is a sport, when you do something with your heart, when you do something 100% you have to be proud. Proud of my team, happy for them and we will try next year."
Podium quotes - Felipe Massa: "I think the second part of the year was preparation for next year. It's such emotions to race here. I think the race was really fantastic. It could have been a better position than what I finish. Anyway, I don't know what to say, I'm just crying, I don't know what to feel. It's just fantastic."
Massa still in tears. I mean, it's Brazil and he's on the podium, but that's an awful lot of emotion from him!
Final gap analysis completely ruined by the safety car.
So, that's it. 2012 is Red Bull's year in both the driver and constructor standings. An incredible year of racing comes to a close with an outstanding race in Brazil.
We've had winners and spinners galore, there's plenty to look back on and discuss as we head into the off-season.
It's time to hunker down for the winter, take stock and recharge the batteries for next year, because hey, there's only 111 days and 11 hours until Australia.
Stay tuned to https://sidepodcast.com and http://f1minute.com and keep in touch, because the off-season can be just as fun as the on. See you there!
All content in the series Brazil 2012
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25 November 2012
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