Rate the race result: 2011 Indian Grand Prix

2011 Indian Grand Prix

Start, Buddh International Circuit

Start, Buddh International Circuit

The first Indian Grand Prix was warmly received and many drivers praised the track.

Unfortunately the race itself was a bit of a dud. F1 Fanatic readers rated it 5.5 out of ten – the second-lowest score given to a race this year.

Sebastian Vettel’s 11th win of the season never looked in doubt as he controlled the Indian Grand Prix from lap one.

As with any new race, the track itself was the subject of much debate. Raj trusted the drivers’ judgement:

Probably the best people to judge the circuit are the drivers and they seem to be happy with it, so I still feel it is good circuit.

It is just that cars are not competitive enough to stick together and race. If car?s are not quick enough to catch cars which are ahead, then any kind circuit of in the world will not give exciting race.
Raj

But TdM felt the qualities that made the track a good one to drive on worked against it producing a good race:

I think it?s a good drivers’ track because they like the time trial-esque nature of its speedy corners.

It’s not good for entertainment because in the middle sector it is not easy to follow other cars closely and there is no chance of a fight. This leaves only one real overtaking chance down the back straight.
TdM

2011 average race
ratings so far

China 9.241
Canada 9.095
Germany 8.43
Hungary 8.344
Britain 7.96
Malaysia 7.775
Belgium 7.772
Monaco 7.684
Japan 7.570
Italy 7.494
Spain 7.319
Turkey 7.306
Korea 6.915
Australia 6.751
Singapore 6.390
India 5.554
Europe 3.871

Steph suggested another reason for the lack of action during the race:

The track’s lovely and the atmosphere and build up were great but the action on track… well, it didn?t exist.

If the tyre choice had been less conservative it could have been much better.
Steph

SimBri, however, was more appreciative:

It was enjoyable for me, it reminded me of some of the races in the last decade. Surely most of the people here still enjoyed F1 then, it?s just a matter of taking a different perspective.

I liked being able to take the time to really follow the timing screens and the live comments on this site.
SimBri

As has often been the case this year, the discussion turned to the role played by the new rules:

I think this race showed for sure that it’s been the tyres and not DRS or KERS which have provided all the excitement this year.
Dizzy

Lachie was unsatisfied with midfield battles, pointing out that F1 is about competing to win:

I think people really need to sit down and think about the situation in F1 when race after race people have to plead that Petrov, Alguersuari and Buemi DRS-ing around tenth place makes for a satisfying race.
Lachie

Finally, a word for the race winner. He may have reduced the first Indian Grand Prix to a procession but Sebastian Vettel’s personality continues to earn him respect and admiration:

His comments about India and the Indian people showed him to be not just a world champion but a very understanding and caring gentleman at the age of 24. My hat goes off to him.
Paul A

Do you think the Indian Grand Prix deserved to be rated so low among this year’s races? Have your say in the comments.

2011 Indian Grand Prix

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25 comments on Rate the race result: 2011 Indian Grand Prix

  1. Silverkeg (@silverkeg) said on 9th November 2011, 9:48

    I’m sorry but I am of a completely different opinion to @Lachie I really enjoy watching midfield battles and while they may not be as important or quite as dramatic as a fight for the win, they are still very enjoyable to watch.

    The drivers of midfield teams are pushing their car to limit just as the leaders and to watch two or more elite drivers battle it out for position is exciting no matter if it is for first or for 14th.

    Although the races may not go down as classics I would still like to see more of the midfield action that goes on, especially if the top end of the field is rather stagnant.

  2. Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 9th November 2011, 9:56

    I think people expected a bit too much from India. There was some good stuff going on up and down the grid, even if Vettel took a Gran Slam. It set up the Toro Rosso-Sauber fight for the rest of the season (and both will be chasing Force India), and the Petrov/Perez/di Resta battle.

    • celeste (@celeste) said on 9th November 2011, 14:39

      I read about two weeks a go, an opinion staying that we are lossing some very important moments in sport… yes is maybe boring that Vettel and RB are winning… but is really difficult to achieve what they have done… is just a matter of watching the records that they are breaking. The one with the leading laps by Mansell was from 1992, 19 years ago!

      Or like how only two other man have been able to achieve Gran Slam in the last 11 years (Schumacher and Alonso)…

    • Fixy (@fixy) said on 9th November 2011, 15:01

      I found the race quite good. Not as much as the other ones and not as bad as Valencia, but, even if few, we had some nice moments to watch.

  3. sid_prasher (@) said on 9th November 2011, 10:05

    Two things that hurt the race were the conservative selection of tyres and dust.
    Hopefully the track will have some vegetation around it to curb the dust and Pirelli will bring more aggressive tyres and we ll have a more interesting race.

    • AndrewTanner (@andrewtanner) said on 9th November 2011, 13:08

      @sid-prasher Pirelli almost immediately admitted to having being too conservative so I can sympathise with them and I think without the benefit of hindsight, they still made the right choice.

      • There is no doubt that race was boring.. frankly without inaugural celebration, it would have been hard to watch all along. But conservative tyre choice (We shouldn’t underestimate that tyres have major role in overtaking this year), dusty off road & moreover top teams have significant difference among themselves in this track and thus none of close racing.

        Probably one race is too premature to rate a racetrack, so overall indian race is boring but not the race track, atmosphere or india itself.

  4. Alain (@paganbasque) said on 9th November 2011, 10:51

    The track is good and there are real chances of overtaking another car, but the problem was the enormous amount of dust, so they need to clean the track in order to erase this problem. But the thing is if this situation can be changed for the next season, if not, we will have another dull race(though I personally enjoyed it).

  5. AdrianMorse (@adrianmorse) said on 9th November 2011, 10:51

    People that vote later seem to be more critical. When I made my vote (6), most people had voted 6, and more had given higher than lower.

  6. wasiF1 (@wasif1) said on 9th November 2011, 10:54

    The midfield battle was good to watch,but I expected this race to be there where it is.

  7. vickyy (@vickyy) said on 9th November 2011, 10:59

    I believe it was more to do with ultra-conservative tyre choice which acted more of Bridgestones, and making things worse, the dust on the track.
    Next year, with much improved track conditions and aggressive tyre choice, can certainly help to shoot the ratings of the race to upper half of the list.

    On a side note, this was the first race which I didn’t watch on TV and it was surreal, and hence my biased 10/10 :)

  8. montreal95 (@montreal95) said on 9th November 2011, 11:11

    Has anyone noticed that the “rate the race” result for India is the exact length of the Abu Dhabi track? :)
    To be sure though, if Abu Dhabi gets a result like this it’ll be considered a relatively very good race for the track.

  9. Scribe (@scribe) said on 9th November 2011, 11:43

    Confession, didn’t watch it really. Dipped in and out. First time in three years I haven’t either watched a race live, or ignored everything and then watched it on the iplayer.

    Just knew what was going to happen, didn’t feel the need to watch it happen. Probably because the championship is dead, didn’t matter to me.

  10. sato113 (@sato113) said on 9th November 2011, 13:02

    oh my god! what a surprise! a new tilke circuit is added to the calendar and the race is boring as hell! now where have I seen this before….

    • AndrewTanner (@andrewtanner) said on 9th November 2011, 13:12

      @sato113 Now now, let’s be fair. The drivers heaped praise on the circuit as did the media and most of the fans (certainly more than any of Tilke’s other efforts). A dusty track and risky tyre choice was always going to nullify the experience a little bit. I thought for an inaugural race it was pretty good. It could have been a lot worse. You really need the experience of at least a few races to make a fair judgement on it. Monza this year scored quite badly by comparison but that’s regarded as one of the best circuits in the world. I honestly believe that in most cases it’s just how the race goes on a particular day.

      • dirgegirl (@dirgegirl) said on 9th November 2011, 13:56

        @AndrewTanner and @sato113 – I wonder about the drivers heaping praise on circuits. I don’t have any hard evidence but I feel like the ones they praise as technical circuits often produce poor racing. I saw a similar comment from someone else a couple of days ago so apparently I’m not alone in this suspicion!

      • sato113 (@sato113) said on 9th November 2011, 22:38

        well Valencia has been poor four years in a row. Korea has had two average races (even with the first in the rain!). Abu Dhabi was awful both years. and india’s got off to a bad start! all of these added in the last 4 years.

        it doesn’t paint a pretty picture!

  11. I’ll try to put aside my emotions of the first Indian GP and having witnessed it live, I admit that it wasn’t half as exciting as I’d expected it to be at first. The moment Pirelli announced the compounds for the weekend, I knew it was going to kill half of it. But then, can’t really blame them for the choice as this was a first-time event and the track was unknown and untested and hadn’t seen any action at all.
    The second cause, as everyone pointed out, was the dust. I was sort of surprised they did not use Trackjets prior to the Friday outings.

    But all said and done, I’m sure next year will be much better and a lot more exciting. Another thing I wanted to point out here is that the turn 2-3 complex is a monster for action if the conditions are right. I can tell as i was sat right there and it hurt to see none of the drivers taking off the racing line due to the dust. That and the back straight could make one hell of a racing fest next year.
    So, I’d reserve judgement until next year. Personally, I was more happy about the fact that the inaugural weekend went on without any issues and was a success. The racing will be a lot better next year.

    • Outsider said on 10th November 2011, 3:40

      From what I heard, the track will be used regularly for lower racing formulae and track days for the rest of the year, this will lay down more rubber for sure. Secondly, once the construction dies down, the dust will reduce.

  12. ob1kenobi.23 (@ob1kenobi23) said on 10th November 2011, 0:03

    I was just noticing that the top 6 rated races, with the exception of Monaco, are the ones that Seb did’nt win.
    Does this means that the races he won were more boring or do Jenson, Lewis & Fernando have a bigger fanbase.
    For my part I really enjoyed the Indian race,but then I enjoy all of them.

  13. speedster (@speedster) said on 10th November 2011, 6:31

    hey guys this is only the first indian gp and still it has got its reputation from all the drivers.its always gets bored if vettel wins the race because he’s having a far more best car in the grid.

    i’m personally enjoyed the indian gp

    next year surely indian gp will be exiting.SO don’t miss it

  14. KeeleyObsessed (@keeleyobsessed) said on 10th November 2011, 8:14

    I stand by what I said in the main article, the Indian GP, once you take out all the iffy parts, was a good race. I really think this track has the potential to be one of the best tracks on the calendar in future years..

    The mantle has been passed down to the US now.. That’s another track that looks good…

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