Sebastien Loeb dropped to an all-time low of ninth in the Castrol EDGE Rankings after retiring from the season-ending Rally of Great Britain in bizarre circumstances.
Despite the retirement, Loeb was still able to clinch a record eighth WRC crown, after the only man capable of stopping him – Ford's Mikko Hirvonen – was also forced out of the rally. Hirvonen's retirement also led to a three-point fall in the Rankings for the Finn, now in 13th spot, behind Loeb and his Citroen teammate Sebastien Ogier.
Among Formula 1 drivers, Lewis Hamilton closed on Mark Webber in the fight for second in the Rankings after a controlled victory in Abu Dhabi. Hamilton, in charge for much of the weekend, was handed a welcome boost when polesitter Sebastian Vettel retired on the opening lap following the damage caused by a spin and puncture on only the second turn.
That meant Vettel lost points in the Rankings, although he sealed the top spot months ago. It also left the path clear for Hamilton to end a win drought which stretched back to July, and in the process close on Webber in the hunt for second. His McLaren teammate Jenson Button also has a mathematical chance of sealing second, although both Britons could be defeated by the fact Webber stakes fewer points in the final race – meaning he can afford to finish behind both McLarens in Brazil and still hang on to second.
Force India's Paul di Resta was the big gainer as his one-stop strategy proved enough to land him ninth and boost him 15 spots to 43rd in the Rankings.
To see who beats Sebastian Vettel in top five greatest title campaigns in history, and to see the full Rankings, visit www.castroldriverrankings.com.