Vote for the best F1 driver of 2011

2011 F1 season review

Drivers, Melbourne, 2011

Drivers, Melbourne, 2011

Who was the best F1 driver of 2011?

You’ve seen F1 Fanatic’s pick of the best drivers of the year, now it’s your turn.

Cast your vote for the driver who impressed you the most in 2011 and have your say in the comments:

Who was the best F1 driver of 2011?

  • Sebastian Vettel (44%)
  • Mark Webber (1%)
  • Lewis Hamilton (4%)
  • Jenson Button (28%)
  • Fernando Alonso (16%)
  • Felipe Massa (0%)
  • Michael Schumacher (1%)
  • Nico Rosberg (1%)
  • Bruno Senna (0%)
  • Vitaly Petrov (0%)
  • Rubens Barrichello (0%)
  • Pastor Maldonado (0%)
  • Adrian Sutil (0%)
  • Paul di Resta (1%)
  • Kamui Kobayashi (0%)
  • Sergio Perez (0%)
  • Sebastien Buemi (0%)
  • Jaime Alguersuari (0%)
  • Heikki Kovalainen (2%)
  • Jarno Trulli (0%)
  • Daniel Ricciardo (0%)
  • Vitantonio Liuzzi (0%)
  • Timo Glock (0%)
  • Jerome d'Ambrosio (0%)
  • Nick Heidfeld (0%)
  • Pedro de la Rosa (0%)
  • Karun Chandhok (0%)
  • Narain Karthikeyan (2%)

Total Voters: 569

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We’re also looking for your views on the best pass of 2011 and the best overtaker of the year. Cast your vote in those polls here:

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131 comments on Vote for the best F1 driver of 2011

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  1. connor herron said on 16th December 2011, 12:11

    Paul di resta best driver for me

    • Archimedas (@archimedas) said on 17th December 2011, 7:33

      Sadly he still havent got neither your nor anyone’s else’s vote

    • My top 10 would be the same as that voted by the F1 Team Princiapls:

      1. Vettel
      2. Button
      3. Alonso
      4. Hamilton
      5. Rosberg
      6. Webber
      7. Di Resta
      8. Sutil
      9. Kovalainen
      10. Schumacher

      But if I was giving my award to the driver that made the biggest impact, I would agree with you, and give it to Di Resta.

      • i think that button in no way should be in front of alonso.
        everyone is getting carried away with button winning ahead of hamilton. this was probably worst season from hamilton. people’s big argument is hamilton was never beaten by a team mate, until now. that is just bs, alonso had same amount of points in the first season, the hamilton had two seasons with heikki, and now 2 seasons with button. alonso probably would have trashed him this season, vettel also.
        Two best drivers this year were vettel and alonso, button comfortably third but alonso closer to vettel than button to alonso. button is a very good driver but not better than hamilton and certanly not better than alonso or vettel

        • oh and i hate vettel (don’t know why, probably because he has the best car for 2 years), but that doesn’t stop me from saying that he was the best driver this year and that he is the on of the 3 best

          by
          ALONSO FAN

  2. Andy G (@toothpickbandit) said on 16th December 2011, 12:13

    If you didn’t vote for Vettel, why? (Honest question!)

    • Because Button impressed me this season more than Vettel. He drove very good races, beats his team mate and shows a constantly good perfomance. Sure, you can tell the same about Vettel, but not in the way Button did it.

      There’s no doubt that Vettel drove an excellent season, but its not such a surprise for me. Maybe there’s a little bit sympathie in it, too. ;)

      My number two, by the way, were Kovalainen, because what he does with the Lotus was phenomenal…

    • Fer no.65 (@fer-no65) said on 16th December 2011, 14:21

      I was thinking the same… it’s quite hard not to vote for Vettel.

    • McBride (@mcbride) said on 16th December 2011, 20:32

      Vettel absolutely amazed me in Qually, but JB really hammered the races and showed the best form of his career.

      I don’t feel that Vettel would have done as well if he wasn’t in the best Adrian Newey powered rocket ship. Button got the best and more out of the Macca, and really impressed me.

      I thought that Lewis would trounce him for sure. JB is just a better all around driver in my opinion. Vettel is a qually master.

      My 2 cents.

      • Alex W said on 17th December 2011, 12:37

        Jenson couldn’t even find his pit box, lost the race lead, Vettel was ready to take it, epic fail JB.

      • David-A (@david-a) said on 17th December 2011, 12:58

        I don’t feel that Vettel would have done as well if he wasn’t in the best Adrian Newey powered rocket ship. Button got the best and more out of the Macca, and really impressed me.

        SV won the title by 130 points. Slow his car down, and Vettel still would have won it by some margin. And Button had more poor races and qualifying sessions. Vettel and Alonso got more out of their cars to be honest.

  3. damonsmedley (@damonsmedley) said on 16th December 2011, 12:15

    This will come as a shock to many (I love being controversial); I voted for Vettel! He had the best car, but so did Webber, and Mark only won a single race. Vettel never backed down at any stage and even in his mid-year “form slump” (the one that the BBC invented) where he wasn’t dominating every race from lights to flag, he still looked as determined and relaxed as ever. I think his most impressive performances came in Spa and Monza where he convincingly squashed the hopes of anyone catching him and took the Red Bull to victory at circuits it struggled at last year.

    Alonso and Button were my equal second best drivers of the year and my Christmas wish will be for McLaren and Ferrari to catch Red Bull so we can see a proper title fight next year. With Button, Alonso, Vettel and Hamilton at their peaks, I can’t think of a more exciting line-up of top drivers. And you can never discount Webber. I hope he’s back to his best again next year too.

  4. I voted Button.

    I admit that Vettel from another point of view was the best driver, he won the championship after all! His superiority was outstanding, you can really understand why people call him the ‘new’ Schumacher.

    But for me Button was the driver that made this year, although not a classic by looking at the standings, a very exciting year. He didn’t demolish his team mate like Vettel, nor did he destroy the whole field, yet I felt throughout the every race that if Button was there something exciting was going to happen. His drive through the field at Canada was just brilliant, at Japan after being forced nearly onto the grass (I know it’s debatable) but he drove quicker than the to be world champion to snatch the win, and then held onto the win from the ever present Alonso.

    I could name more examples, but really in my eyes he has gone from a great driver to a greatly greater driver. :/

  5. paulipedia (@paulipedia) said on 16th December 2011, 12:24

    F1 is incredibly difficult and for someone to make it look as easy as Seb has this year is purely masterful

  6. Ninad (@nin13) said on 16th December 2011, 12:25

    Vettel was in a class apart this year. Nobody could touch him in qualifying.

  7. Hellas (@hellas) said on 16th December 2011, 12:34

    fernando alonso. #1

      • bananarama (@bananarama) said on 16th December 2011, 23:30

        First of all I want to say that isn’t necessarily my opinion but a nice exercise. Lets say the constructors scores are the benchmark for how good a car is. Now lets go and norm all teams to the same score to even out the car differences. To get some sense of reality into it lets not scale all teams to RedBull but differentiate between performance groups (its basically a method I use in the bank where I work to find out the value of things). So here’s what we’d find as a result:

        Top Teams:
        Alonso 446points
        Vettel 392
        Button 351
        Hamilton 295
        Webber 258
        Massa 205

        Merc (put them as a single group)

        Midfield
        Kobayashi 50
        Alguersuari 46
        Sutil 45
        Petrov 37
        Heidfeld 34
        Buemi 27
        Perez 23

        If you’d scale all teams to RedBull Results would become interesting (but somewhat unrealistic I suppose):
        Alonso 446
        Kobayashi 445
        Alguersuari 409
        Sutil 400
        Vettel 392
        Button 351
        Rosberg 351
        Petrov 329
        Heidfeld 302
        Hamilton 295
        Schumacher 292
        DiResta 258
        Webber 258
        Buemi 240
        Massa 205
        Perez 205

        As I said, those scores only work in the limited world where WCC points represent the real strength of the cars which obviously isn’t true.

        Another argument for Alonso would be that his teammate got 46% of his points, Vettels teammate got 66% of his score but again, one could argue that Webber is better than Massa. If we’d count by how much drivers contribute to the teams total points the scores would be (pretty much the same as the ones I wrote above obviously, but I wanted to show you the numbers):

        Alonso 69%
        Kobayashi 68%
        Alguersuari 64%
        Sutil 61%
        Vettel 60%
        Button 54%
        Rosberg 54%
        Petrov 51%
        Hamilton 46%
        Schumacher 46%
        DiResta 39%
        Buemi 36%
        Perez 32%
        Massa 31%

        Of course those results vary depending on how good the teammates are, Button for example would rank much higher if he had Chandhok or something as a teammate but well, its just playing with some numbers.

        I guess it is fair to say Vettel was the best driver of the season but you can twist amd turn the numbers until they suit your point of view.

        • geminict said on 17th December 2011, 11:08

          Still need to factor in retirements and number of races participated- so to really equalise you need to work on “points per race finished”.

        • Hairs (@hairs) said on 18th December 2011, 12:18

          You need to provide a HUGE amount more information as to how you’re normalising and weighting these figures before I’d give them much credence.

      • Riffa said on 18th December 2011, 9:34

        Vettel did an awesome job (he really did), however he was also in the best car and was able to run away. I think if Vettel and Alonso swapped rides, that Alonso would have done a better job. As much as I am not thrilled with his persona, I feel he has been the most complete driver in terms of shear speed, reflexes, racecraft, determination, aggressiveness and grit for at least 2 years running. I think if he was in a Redbull he would not have just won, but severely embarrassed the entire rest of the field more than Vettel did. I like Vettel, but my #1 pick is Alonso for the year. BTW, that time I said I hate Ferrari I was kinda just being cocky (slightly tipsy ;) I don’t really hate any of the teams. Ferrari kinda fails for me in sportsmanship though. But I do respect them for hanging onto Massa in light of his last couple years.

  8. ayrtonsenna01 (@ayrtonsenna01) said on 16th December 2011, 12:37

    Vettel was imperious all year. Sure he had the car underneath him, but so did Webber. He’ll for sure become an all-time great

  9. UncleBob said on 16th December 2011, 12:43

    Vettel won the Championship by a country mile, so surely this is a bit of a pointless question/pole?
    It should ask, who was your fave driver of 2011…

  10. Colossal Squid (@colossal-squid) said on 16th December 2011, 12:45

    Unquestionably Vettel.

  11. Hairs (@hairs) said on 16th December 2011, 12:51

    I think this one will be interesting.

    On the one hand, nobody has any doubt Vettel was the quality of the field, almost flawless in every respect, and a well deserved winner/champion.

    On the other hand, I think there are going to be a lot of people who will interpret this as best/”favourite” driver and in that case I think a lot of people might vote for Button. He wasn’t as flawless as Vettel (“no grip in qualifying” will be written on his gravestone), but he wasn’t far off. And when he did win, he won in the style we all like to see: battling on pure talent and determination, at the limits of what his car could give him.

  12. speedster (@speedster) said on 16th December 2011, 12:56

    For me surely its adrian sutil. He came back well after facing lot of problems during the start of the season. He finished the season very strongly and surely deserve’s a seat in top 4 teams. Only good drivers can finish the season in a better way after a come back…

  13. denise086 (@denise086) said on 16th December 2011, 13:00

    Vettel – no one got near him all year long. His qualifying form was particularly awesome.

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