Lewis Hamilton, McLaren, Abu Dhabi, 2011

Hamilton voted Abu Dhabi Grand Prix Driver of the Weekend

2011 Abu Dhabi Grand PrixPosted on | Author Ewa Zaborska

Lewis Hamilton, McLaren, Abu Dhabi, 2011
Lewis Hamilton, McLaren, Abu Dhabi, 2011

Lewis Hamilton was voted Driver of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix weekend by F1 Fanatic readers.

The top three in the voting reflected the top three on the podium with Fernando Alonso coming in second ahead of Jenson Button.

It was a close vote between Hamilton and Alonso, the pair accounting for over 80% of the votes cast.

Driver of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix Weekend poll ?ǣ top three

1. Lewis Hamilton ?ǣ 45.1%
2. Fernando Alonso ?ǣ 35.1%
3. Jenson Button ?ǣ 4.9%

Smifaye summarised the performances of all top three drivers of the weekend:

For me it is Hamilton. He showed great pace throughout the weekend and for people to be predicting him on pole and to be surprised by Vettel getting it is saying something. He drove a mature race and didn?t seem worried at all when Alonso was breathing down his neck. Superb drive which will hopefully give him that buzz back and turn his results around.

Alonso also has to be mentioned as he drove a great race and was putting in superb lap times and showing great pace that we hadn?t seen all weekend.

Button did well to hold off the attacks of both Massa and Webber to get his third third position at Abu Dhabi.

Some readers had a hard time choosing between Hamilton and Alonso:

I was going to go for Alonso who drove the wheels off his Ferrari (in a good way, unlike Vettel) but then it?s a vote for best driver over the full three days, so Hamilton gets it for me.
Andy G

I?m really not sure who to vote for. I think Hamilton had it under control the whole race and was simply running at a safe pace relative to Alonso. But Alonso even being there in that Ferrari was impressive. I want to give it to Hamilton, but I think Alonso deserves the recognition more.

I had a hard time choosing between Alonso and Hamilton. Hamilton drove a superb race and it was brilliant seeing him up on the top step again.

The only thing I can fault him at is not getting pole position and that?s what I think changed my mind from giving him the driver of the weekend. I don?t think he?d have won had Vettel?s tyre not disintegrated.

Alonso somehow managed to keep within reach of the win until the pit stop with an inferior car. So Alonso for me!

Lewis Hamilton

Qualifying: 2nd
Race: 1st

Hamilton was strong through the whole weekend, but lost pole position to Sebastian Vettel.

He inherited the lead after Vettel’s crash in turn two of the opening lap – a gift he couldn’t waste. He was quick and consistent, controlling the race to take a much-needed third victory of the year.

Has to be Lewis Hamilton for me, dominated practice, and didn’t put a foot wrong in the race, a return to form for Lewis.

I’m trying to thing reasons not to vote for Lewis, but I think there really aren?t that many. So Hamilton gets my vote.

I picked Lewis Hamilton.

Consistently fast, often faster than Vettel, and I?m sure he?d have battled with him in the race had the German not retired. Alonso was great in the race considering he had the third-fastest car and outpaced Button, Webber and Massa, but Lewis had another weekend which reminds us all why he is considered as a great champion.

Fernando Alonso

Qualifying: 5th
Race: 2nd

Qualified fifth as often before this year, but passed Webber and Button on the opening lap to push Hamilton almost to the chequered flag in what he called was a race composed of qualifying laps.

For me it?s Alonso. He did the best he could in qualifying, coming close to the front two teams and outpacing Massa by quite a bit. In the race I thought he was outstanding, with a great opening lap to pick off Webber and Button then pull away. He kept Hamilton honest right to the flag.
Colossal Squid

I?m a Hamilton fan but to be able to pull that kind of pace from the Ferrari during the race, gives Fernando my driver of the weekend vote. Points are won on race day and I place more of the weight of my vote on race performance.

Both Lewis and Fernando deserve to be the drivers of the weekend but I voted for Fernando as he outperformed his car, had a great start and drove consistently through the whole race (the same goes for Lewis on this last remark).

My vote goes to Fernando, he combined a very strong start, overtaking Jenson and Mark, with the usual superb pace in the long stints. With a clearly slower car than McLaren he put Lewis under a great pressure. Although it was very tactical, the battle between them was very interesting.

Jenson Button

Qualifying: 3rd
Race: 3rd

Qualified only nine-thousandths second behind Hamilton. In the race Button had to deal with a broken KERS and entertained the viewers with some close battles with Webber to eventually fend off the Red Bull driver and finish on the podium.

Button was strong in practice and while he was pipped by Hamilton in qualifying, his speed was on par with Hamilton?s (nine-thousands of a second is a blink of an eye, or less). Then he topped it off with a brilliant drive to defend against Webber, with a couple of champion level re-overtakes of Webber. Managing the KERS issue with Massa and Webber hard on him was massive.

Since Hamilton and Alonso have it covered, I voted Button for he should be the third driver of the weekend. Three things to highlight his performance:

Faulty KERS for 20 laps, then manual system reset, then another fail after two laps.

Much has been said about upset braking balance with faulty KERS harvesters, which make it doubly difficult to keep pace (but what do we know about this stuff really?)

Despite that, brilliant and clean fights with Webber.

2011 Driver of the Weekend results so far

First Second Third
Australia Sergio Perez (36.3%) Vitaly Petrov (32.5%) Sebastian Vettel (12.0%)
Malaysia Nick Heidfeld (38.4%) Sebastian Vettel (16.0%) Jenson Button (12.1%)
China Mark Webber (47.8%) Lewis Hamilton (42.4%) Felipe Massa (2.5%)
Turkey Fernando Alonso (37.8%) Kamui Kobayashi (25.8%) Sebastian Vettel (22.1%)
Spain Lewis Hamilton (39.6%) Sebastian Vettel (23.9%) Fernando Alonso (13.3%)
Monaco Jenson Button (33.1%) Fernando Alonso (18.8%) Sebastian Vettel (17.0%)
Canada Jenson Button (61.0%) Michael Schumacher (27.8%) Sebastian Vettel (2.2%)
Europe Fernando Alonso (32.6%) Sebastian Vettel (27.6%) Jaime Alguersuari (25.7%)
Britain Fernando Alonso (53.0%) Lewis Hamilton (22.3%) Mark Webber (8.0%)
Germany Lewis Hamilton (76.6%) Adrian Sutil (9.8%) Fernando Alonso (5.6%)
Hungary Jenson Button (50.7%) Paul di Resta (14.4%) Lewis Hamilton (11.8%)
Belgium Michael Schumacher (45.1%) Jenson Button (28.2%) Sebastian Vettel (14.7%)
Italy Sebastian Vettel (38.2%) Michael Schumacher (29.6%) Jenson Button (18.2%)
Singapore Sebastian Vettel (41.8%) Paul di Resta (30.9%) Jenson Button (15.6%)
Japan Jenson Button (67.3%) Fernando Alonso (13.3%) Michael Schumacher (6.3%)
Korea Lewis Hamilton (36.4%) Jaime Alguersuari (22.6%) Sebastian Vettel (22.2%)
India Sebastian Vettel (47.5%) Jenson Button (13.5%) Michael Schumacher (11.6%)
Abu Dhabi Lewis Hamilton (45.1%) Fernando Alonso (35.1%) Jenson Button (4.9%)

It was Hamilton?s fourth win in the poll giving him as many as Jenson Button, and one more each than Sebastian Vettel and Fernando Alonso.

For the first time this season, the results of the poll perfectly reflected the actual race results with the podium finishers occupying top three spots in the poll.

What do you think about the results? Share your thoughts below.

Image ?? McLaren