Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel are on the verge of writing a great sport fairytale rivalryin Formula One. At the beginning of 2014 people were wondering if anyone would be able to match Vettel’s title tally, after hisfour consecutive Driver championship wins. Fernando Alonso, two-time winner, was still believed to get on rails with his legendary start making results at Ferrari. Two years later we’re watched Hamilton’s superb form, while Alonso just gottwo years older, - and returned to his rookie days, racing a McLaren-Honda that surely reminded him of his 2001 Minardi. Right now, and although no one seems to notice, Vettel and Hamilton have the same level of successas the legends Ayrton Senna and Alain Prost.

When Prost retired after the1993 season he got himselffour World Drivers Champion titles, against Senna’s three. Without his main rival the “magic” Brazilian was pointed out as the star driver for the 1994 championship. And even if his initial results with Williams-Renault were not positive, everyone believes he would eventually pick at leastone or twotitles before retiring. Senna himself thought he might race up to 2000.

Vettel and Hamilton are nowon four and three World Titles, just like Prost and Senna. But there is a big difference. Prost was 38 and Senna 33 when they got those numbers. Today, Hamilton will be 31 and Vettel only 29. And if you ponder that Michael Schumacher raced in a rather competitive way until he was 43 (even if he seemed vulnerable as Rosberg’s partner, during his three-season comeback), you can imagine Vettel and Hamilton battling for another 10 years!

Mercedes internal rivalry

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff has said more than once that Hamilton and Rosberg are “two ‘number one’ drivers” and the team intends to treat them like that. In fact, if the sport audience complains that 2015 was just a procession to confirm Hamilton’s title, the main guilty partyis Rosberg, the only one to have machinery to beat the Briton.

Rosberg was unable to mount a comeback, the way Prost did in 1989 after losing the 1988 title for Senna.

Ferrari has 2 World Champions

Aftertwo disappointing seasons at Ferrari itseems that no one is expecting Kimi Raikkonen to get back to his 00s’ glory days, when he was perhaps the best driver of the field aside fromSchumacher.

Even if the 2007 World Champion has been affected by some bad luck, Sebastian Vettel seems to the be the one who can build a real challenge to the Mercedes duo in 2016.

Hamilton: a chance to match Vettel

Everyone expects Mercedes and Ferrari to beat the front again. This is a chance for Hamilton to equal Vettel’sfour world titles, and for the German to get his fifth. And what about the distant future? Will these champions be able to catch up toSchumacher’s record ofseven World Championships? And who will be the final winner?

Image: Wikimedia Commons

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