How can Charles Leclerc stop Max Verstappen from being crowned the World Champion in Singapore?

Charles Leclerc is almost entirely out of title contention, but what will he need to do to avoid Max Verstappen sealing the title with 5 races to go?

Charles Leclerc (on the left) and Max Verstappen (on the right)
Charles Leclerc (on the left) and Max Verstappen (on the right)

Charles Leclerc is almost completely out of the world championship fight. He is 116 points behind Max Verstappen, and the gap might get bigger yet. Leclerc cannot afford for that to happen at all if he wants to put any remnant of a fight in the remaining races, and in fact, will have to very significantly outscore Verstappen in the remaining races.

There are a maximum of 164 points up for the taking in the remaining six races, with 156 from the feature races and 8 from the sprint race in Brazil. For the best chance at the win, Leclerc will have to win all of the remaining races, which will bring his total up to 383 points. But that still may not be enough.

If Max Verstappen is able to take 48 points from the remaining races i.e. even if he DNFs in the sprint race, and only finishes 6th for the remaining races, it will still be enough to take the title, as even if they finish on the same number of points, he will have more wins. So starting with Singapore, what will Leclerc have to do to win the title?

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Charles Leclerc left with a Herculean task

Charles Leclerc (on the left) and Max Verstappen (on the right)
Charles Leclerc (on the left) and Max Verstappen (on the right)

As you can probably tell, it is not an easy ask, and everything will have to come together for Charles Leclerc for him to even have a chance at winning the championship. In fact, Max Verstappen can seal the championship in Singapore itself, if he outscores Leclerc by 22 points. That is, if Verstappen takes the maximum number of points (or not) and Leclerc finishes P8 or lower, Verstappen will win in Singapore itself.

But what about after Singapore? Of course, if Verstappen DNFs in Singapore, it will open a small window of opportunity for the Monegasque if he takes P1 with the fastest lap. But he will still be 90 points behind Verstappen. If this happens, the number of points left from the next race onwards will be 138, so Verstappen won’t be able to seal the title in Japan.

Even if Verstappen finishes second in Singapore, the gap between him and Leclerc will be around 108 points, which is not enough to seal the title in Japan either. If Verstappen finishes first, and Leclerc finishes second, the gap will be about 124 points. After Japan, there a maximum of 104 points in the championship, so Leclerc will have to outscore the Dutchman by at least 21 points.

So he will have to do basically the same thing to stay in the fight after Japan that Verstappen will have to do to seal the title in Singapore. It’s not looking good, but you never say never in sports, not until you are completely out of the fight. Leclerc will have to call on the racing gods for help if he wants to win this title.

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