The Virgin Australia 2017 Supercars series has one race remaining and unlike the F1 circuit, where the outcome was decided well before the end of the season and seemed almost a formality from the midway point, there are five drivers remaining who could claim the Supercars Championship at the season-ending Newcastle 500.
For some of the five, the contention consists mainly of a mathematical possibility, but that is better than no possibility.
The five alive for the Supercars championship are six-time winner Jamie Whincup, Scott McLaughlin, Fabian Coulthard, Chaz Mostert and Shane van Gisbergen.
Whincup is the leader going in, sitting on 2850 points. McLaughlin trails by 30 points. The other three, Coulthard, Mostert and van Gisbergen are more than 150 points behind Whincup, with each of the two races worth 150 points.
The current number three in the standings, Coulthard, is 176 points to the rear of Whincup. Realistically, he would have to win at least one of the races and hope for disaster on the part of McLaughlin and Whincup.
Mostert is even further behind, trailing Whincup by 264 points, so he would need to win both races and hope that the three ahead of him fare poorly. By poorly we mean no points whatsoever.
Van Gisbergen, trailing the lead by 276 points, would need to win both races and hope that Whincup score no more than 24 points and quite frankly, that scenario seems quite unlikely. McLaughlin can ruin van Gisbergen with a couple of decent results, although van Gisbergen could conceivably work his way up to a podium, provided that Coulthard and Mostert have poor outings.
Still, the mere fact that five drivers are still alive, albeit three of them out of control of their fate, speaks volume about the success the Supercars series has had in making for a compelling reason to watch motor racing.