Friday, February 01, 2008

Getting ready for predictions

This time last year I threw out some predictions, which I plan on doing again. Before that though, let's see how well I did:

Predicted: Dani Pedrosa. Actual winner: Casey Stoner. I wasn't far off, since Pedrosa took second, however he was very far behind Stoner and was never really a contender, given the slow pace of development of the Honda RC212V.

Predicted: Marcus Gronholm. Actual winner: Seb Loeb. This one was very close, and if it hadn't been for Marcus' error in Ireland, I would have been right. In reality I had expected Seb to do it, but went for the more nostalgic choice, given Marcus' imminent retirement.

Predicted: Kimi Raikkonen. Actual winner: Kimi Raikonnen. I was one of the few who got this right, but once again it was a close run thing. The prediction was based on a belief that Alonso would struggle in the McLaren, and I never even considered Lewis. Still, a win is a win!

World Superbike:
Predicted: Noriyuki Haga. Actual winner: James Toseland. I honestly expected Troy Bayliss to win, but the cantankerous old 999 proved too much. Picking Haga was another example of the heart ruling the head, since who doesn't want to see Nitro win just once?

AMA Superbike:
Predicted: Eric Bostrom. Actual winner: Ben Spies. I thought the Yamaha would be so much better than it was.

British Touring Cars:
Predicted: Jason Plato. Actual winner: Fabrizio Giovanardi. A fair pick on my part in a competitive championship.

Champ Car:
Predicted: Justin Wilson. Actual winner: Sebastien Bourdais. SeaBass and his team were just too good, but the series is so messed up it's almost pointless to think about it...

World Touring Cars:
Predicted: Jorg Muller. Actual winner: Andy Priaulx. Jorg was never in with a shout, but five drivers still had a chance going to the final round. Predicting the WTCC is perhaps harder than climbing a greased pole.

Predicted: Gary Paffett (if he gets an '07 car). Actual winner: Mattias Ekstrom. Paffett never got the current-spec car and so was never in with a shout. The fact that Bruno Spengler, in an '07 Merc, did have the right equipment and came 2nd says a lot about what Paffett might have achieved.

V8 Supercars:
Predicted: Mark Skaife. Actual winner: Garth Tander. Skaife's strong finish to '06 hinted at big things in '07, but his Holden Racing Team was once again upstaged by Tander's HSV team. The fact that HRT has basically stolen all the successful elements of HSV for '08 says a lot about their strength.

British Superbike:
Predicted: Chris Walker. Actual winner: Ryuichi Kiyonari. I SO wanted The Stalker to do well, but he had a terrible year. Once again, I went for the emotive choice. Is he past his prime?

Predicted: Helio Castroneves. Actual winner: Dario Franchitti. After a promising start, Helio never looked that good and nor did his team-mate. Not the best year for Penske in the IRL.

Predicted: Kevon Harvick. Actual winner: Jimmie Johnson. Although I think Harvick is perhaps one of the top three most talented stock car drivers out there, his team struggled to get to grips with the Car of Tomorrow (Today? Yesterday?). Had he been in a Hendrick car, Johnson might have had an extra rival.

Le Mans:
Predicted: Audi, RML, Aston Martin and Scuderia Ecosse. Actual: Audi, Binnie, Aston Martin and IMSA Performance. So I got two right, not bad I think.

Predicted: Audi, Dyson, Corvette and Flying Lizard. Actual: Audi, Penske, Corvette and Risi Competizione. Once again, two right, but I never would have predicted the strength of Penske.

So I got 6 out of 21 correct. That's pretty bad for a supposed "expert". Fact is, I tended towards choices that reflected who I wanted to win, not who I thought would win. So for 2008, we'll have two sets of predictions, those of the head, and those of the heart. Stay tuned.


Anonymous said...

how could you missed the Risi pick in GT2? better team, drivers and car.

tesla said...

i guess your 6 out of 21 is something good! at the end of the day, all we want is to watch a good and challenging competition!
we would not like to see some driver start the season as best and finish it by a margin!!
aint that true?

let the racing begin!!