Whether you love it or hate it, sick of it or can’t get enough of it Capgate was undoubtedly one of the defining moments of 2015. It doesn’t matter if you believe Hamilton’s side of the story or Rosberg’s, capgate was exactly the kind of drama 2015 needed to and give F1 a much needed boost in positive publicity. There’s an age old saying that any publicity it good publicity and after two years of newspaper headlines accusing F1 of being “boring” and “processional” the drama and fallout which came from Hamilton’s decision to throw the P2 hat at Rosberg in Austin made headlines all over the globe and undoubtedly caught the attention of many people not involved in motorsport.
Whilst the complete truth regarding Rosberg’s revival will never be fully known outside of Brackley, his remarkable hat trick of race wins following his mistake in Austin has set the scene perfectly as we head into 2016. Many, along with myself were quick to accuse Rosberg of being a sore loser in the immediate aftermath of capgate however his response from Mexico onwards and in the BBC F1 Season Review portrayed a previously unseen more humble side of the German, and you’re often left wondering if he was portrayed as the villain by the British media.
Nevertheless, Rosberg’s part in capgate ensured he had a lead role in one of the seasons biggest controversies and if one thing is for sure, it’s that Nico will be out to ensure that he is the one throwing the P2 cap at Hamilton next time (if it goes ahead) the USGP heads to Austin.
*I’m sure you’ve seen it all before, but for old times sake here’s a short clip of the infamous incident.
Number four in our season highlights series goes to the F1 driver most likely to enjoy a successful career in stand up comedy when he hangs up his driving boots, Sebastian Vettel. Such was Mercedes’ dominance and Vettel’s superiority over his teammate in 2015, the post qualifying and race press conferences often featured a familiar top three consisting of Hamilton, Rosberg and Vettel. With Hamilton and Rosberg frequently reduced to couple like bickering, Vettel was a rare beam of light breaking through the often tense atmosphere in the press conferences. Never one to shy away from a little humour, his new found revelation and confidence at Ferrari have allowed us to see even more of the inner Sebastian Vettel in 2015 and his sense of humour was a great advert for F1 in otherwise less that headline grabbing year.
All to often, and in some cases correctly, F1 drivers are portrayed as cool and calculated by the media, however Vettel’s regular quips at the expense of Mercedes allowed us to see a more human side of the modern F1 driver, one not often seen since the glory days of the late 20th century. It’s fair to say that Hamilton often took more kindly to Vettel’s jokes than Rosberg and with the rules staying more or less the same for 2016, we can look forward to many more light hearted F1 press conferences in the coming season.
In case you had forgotten some of the funnier moments from the press conferences this year you can take a look at a brief highlights video below!