Vote for your Australian Grand Prix driver of the weekend

2012 Australian Grand Prix

Start, Melbourne, 2012Which F1 driver had the best race weekend in Melbourne?

Compare all the drivers’ performances below and vote for who you think was the best driver of the Australian Grand Prix weekend.

Driver notes

Sebastian Vettel – Superb lap-two pass on Rosberg, rode his luck to claim second from Hamilton.
Mark Webber – Pipped his team mate in qualifying despite not having KERS, lost ground at the start but rallied to take best-ever home result.

Jenson Button – Beat Hamilton off the line and never looked back.
Lewis Hamilton – Brilliant pole lap but couldn’t match Button’s race pace. Unlucky to lose second.

Fernando Alonso – Qualifying mistake cost him a better grid spot but wrung every last hundredth from the car in the race to take fifth.
Felipe Massa – “This has been a really poor weekend for me,” said Massa, and he wasn’t kidding: Several spins in practice, well off Alonso in qualifying, poor race pace.

Michael Schumacher – Qualified and raced well before gearbox problems put him off and forced his retirement.
Nico Rosberg – Blew his only new-tyre lap in Q3, started well but was shuffled back into the pack with weak race pace.

Kimi Raikkonen – Looked a little race-rusty as a mistake and poorly-timed final run saw him go out in Q1. But pulled off some good passes in the race – especially when he gained three places in the last-lap scramble.
Romain Grosjean – In contrast to Raikkonen, starred in qualifying with a superb lap for third in his eighth F1 appearance, but lost ground at the start and went out in a needless collision with Maldonado on lap two.

Paul di Resta – Said he failed to get his tyres warmed up adequately for his qualifying lap but stole a point on the final lap of the race by saving KERS until the last corner.
Nico Hulkenberg – Qualified well but was unlucky to go out on lap one at Melbourne – again.

Kamui Kobayashi – His Q1 lap would have been good enough to get him in the final ten had he done it in Q2. Put a superb pass on Raikkonen during the race which put him in a position to claim sixth when Maldonado crashed.
Sergio Perez – Relegated to last on the grid by a gearbox change penalty but gained ten places on the first lap. Ran a customary long first stint to briefly hold second. Safety car probably cost him track position to Maldonado, suggesting sixth place was on the cards.

Daniel Ricciardo – Squeezed off at the first corner and spent the race making up for lost time. Passed his team mate on the final lap en route to snatching two points for ninth place.
Jean-Eric Vergne – Narrowly missed out on Q3 on his Grand Prix debut. Had an off during the race and lost out in the last-lap scramble for the final points places.

Pastor Maldonado – Qualified well and raced strongly for 57 laps. The final 58th tour was where it all went wrong – he nearly rear-ended Alonso at turn three, then shunted heavily at turn eight.
Bruno Senna – Poor qualifying left him vulnerable to midfield mayhem – which duly claimed him at the first corner. Fell to the back of the field and was fighting his way through when he made contact with Massa.

Heikki Kovalainen – Lost KERS at the start and was without DRS for the first few laps. Retired with suspension problems but not before incurring the wrath of the stewards by passing cars during the safety car period.
Vitaly Petrov – Out-qualified by Kovalainen but enjoyed a more straightforward race until his CT01 also failed.

Pedro de la Rosa – Beat his team mate in qualifying despite only setting his first lap in the car during final practice.
Narain Karthikeyan – Almost matched de la Rosa in qualifying but both were well outside the 107% time and were not allowed to start.

Timo Glock – Brought the car which hadn’t run in pre-season testing home in 14th place.
Charles Pic – A classified finisher on his F1 debut, despite having to stop a few laps from home having lost oil pressure.

Qualifying and race results summary

Started Gap to team mate Laps leading team mate Pitted Finished Gap to team mate
Sebastian Vettel 6th +0.017s 58/58 2 2nd -2.408s
Mark Webber 5th -0.017s 0/58 2 4th +2.408s
Jenson Button 2nd +0.152s 57/58 2 1st -4.075s
Lewis Hamilton 1st -0.152s 1/58 2 3rd +4.075s
Fernando Alonso 12th -1.003s 46/46 2 5th
Felipe Massa 16th +1.003s 0/46 3
Michael Schumacher 4th -0.35s 10/10 0
Nico Rosberg 7th +0.35s 0/10 2 12th
Kimi Raikkonen 17th +1.26s 0/1 2 7th
Romain Grosjean 3rd -1.26s 1/1 0
Paul di Resta 15th +0.772s 0/0 2 10th
Nico Hulkenberg 9th -0.772s 0/0 0
Kamui Kobayashi 13th -0.414s 18/58 2 6th -2.692s
Sergio Perez 22nd +0.414s 40/58 1 8th +2.692s
Daniel Ricciardo 10th -0.11s 1/58 3 9th -0.292s
Jean-Eric Vergne 11th +0.11s 57/58 2 11th +0.292s
Pastor Maldonado 8th -0.457s 52/52 2 13th Didn’t finish on same lap
Bruno Senna 14th +0.457s 0/52 3 16th Didn’t finish on same lap
Heikki Kovalainen 18th -0.339s 13/34 3
Vitaly Petrov 19th +0.339s 21/34 1
Pedro de la Rosa -0.148s 0/0
Narain Karthikeyan +0.148s 0/0
Timo Glock 20th -0.747s 52/53 2 14th Didn’t finish on same lap
Charles Pic 21st +0.747s 1/53 2 15th Didn’t finish on same lap

Review the race data

Vote for your driver of the weekend

Which driver do you think did the best job this weekend?

Cast your vote below and explain your choice in the comments.

Who was the best driver of the Australian Grand Prix weekend?

  • Sebastian Vettel (4%)
  • Mark Webber (0%)
  • Lewis Hamilton (2%)
  • Jenson Button (44%)
  • Fernando Alonso (21%)
  • Felipe Massa (0%)
  • Michael Schumacher (1%)
  • Nico Rosberg (0%)
  • Kimi Raikkonen (7%)
  • Romain Grosjean (1%)
  • Paul di Resta (0%)
  • Nico Hulkenberg (0%)
  • Kamui Kobayashi (3%)
  • Sergio Perez (8%)
  • Daniel Ricciardo (2%)
  • Jean-Eric Vergne (0%)
  • Pastor Maldonado (6%)
  • Bruno Senna (0%)
  • Heikki Kovalainen (0%)
  • Vitaly Petrov (0%)
  • Narain Karthikeyan (0%)
  • Pedro de la Rosa (0%)
  • Timo Glock (0%)
  • Charles Pic (0%)

Total Voters: 861

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2012 Australian Grand Prix

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181 comments on Vote for your Australian Grand Prix driver of the weekend

  1. smifaye (@smifaye) said on 19th March 2012, 11:18

    I voted for Button. The reason being he put in a great second qualifying lap to get within 2 tenths to Hamilton and we all know qualifying isn’t where Button excels. He got a great start and lead in a pretty dominant fashion. The safety car flattered the performance of the other drivers as I feel he would have been at least 10 seconds down the road without it.

    An honourable mention must go to Sergio Perez for his performance in the race and especially Pastor Maldonado. I’m really glad to see that these teams were running near the front of the field and to see a Williams hussling a Ferrari made my weekend.

  2. Adam Blocker (@blockwall2) said on 19th March 2012, 11:19

    Kobyashi, he got a great result for his team. It would have been maldonado, had he not crashed on the last lap of the Grand Prix.

  3. Zagal (@zagal) said on 19th March 2012, 11:22

    Fernando, Jenson, Kimi, Sergio… difficult choice for me. @keithcollantine: it would be interesting if you could split your vote, or even better, to distribute a number of points among different drivers. From a total of 10 points I would give 4 to Button, 3 to Alonso, 2 to PĂ©rez and 1 to Raikkonen

  4. Bullfrog (@bullfrog) said on 19th March 2012, 11:22

    Easily Button for me – Vettelesque control of the race, and just the man for an unknown situation with a new car and tyres, which he seemed to make last better than Hamilton.

    Classy, clean passing from Raikkonen. Kobayashi got him back, in style, but he showed those kids how it’s done on the last lap! I suspect it was a great race by Alonso too, it reminded me of some of his damage-limitation drives in Renaults in 2008-9. But no prizes for binning it on Saturday.

    Bit underwhelmed by all the Maldonado praise. People are talking as if he was still driving last year’s Williams. He went off twice on his own and appeared to sideswipe Grosjean. Williams may have 30-odd million reasons not to criticise him, but it’s time he proved he can get results, even more so than Petrov last year.

  5. Jason Ferguson (@jason5165) said on 19th March 2012, 11:31

    Jenson Button. As Vettel pointed out – JB was untouchable!

  6. SamS (@sams) said on 19th March 2012, 11:39

    Was a close one between Button and Perez, Button dominated from the front but went with Perez in the end his tyre management was immense, i would love to see him in a quicker car, or to sort out Saubers quali pass and see how well he does

  7. mole (@mole) said on 19th March 2012, 11:53

    Gotta be Jenson, the only way he couldve had a better race weekend was to get the Pole on Saturday, but that’s a big ask considering the form Lewis was in on that day. Jenson was on it from the word go in the first practice session.

    Honourable mention to Alonso for dragging the Ferrari up there, and holding off Maldonado, Perez for making the 1 stopper work and to Marussia for finishing on basically one of their first testing sessions! I’m a sucker for that logo, reminds me of Buzz Lightyear for some reason

  8. Ciaran (@ciaran) said on 19th March 2012, 12:04

    I would have voted Maldonado, but his crash was a very amateur mistake. Alonso gets my vote for dragging that Ferrari where it never should have been.

  9. maxthecat said on 19th March 2012, 12:09

    I’m not particularly a fan of Alonso but to drag that car into 5th place was an amazing job so he gets my vote even though Jenson drove a perfect race.

  10. Pamphlet (@pamphlet) said on 19th March 2012, 12:11

    Button is clearly deserving of the ‘driver of the day’ title. I mean, he pulled a Vettel. On Vettel.

    Honorable mention: Maldonado. He made some bad moves early in the race and crashed out due to his own mistake at the end, but barring those he drove incredibly well, keeping Alonso on his toes.

  11. mphipps (@mphipps) said on 19th March 2012, 12:13

    Pastor Maldonado for me. I think we at last saw a glimpse of his true potential. Absolutely gutted for him and Williams when he went off on the last lap

  12. Cyclops_PL (@cyclops_pl) said on 19th March 2012, 12:15

    Lewis Hamilton – Brilliant pole lap but couldn’t match Button’s pace pace. <– I guess it should be race pace. Typo here?

    Driver of the weekend for me is either Button, who simply had perfect race and close to perfect qualy, or Alonso who again put the Ferrari where it didn't deserve to be.

  13. djdaveyp85 (@djdaveyp87) said on 19th March 2012, 12:37

    JB for me, absolutely controlled the race. Plus his attitude was fantastic. He wasn’t dejected when he qualified second he just took in his stride and even knew where he got it wrong, he congratulated Hamilton on his pole with sincerity and was happy with only being half a tenth off the pole.

    Some noteworthy mentions have to go to Pastor Maldonado for his almost brilliant race and Fernando for his brilliant recovery drive. Right now I don’t know why Felipe Massa has a seat.

    Lewis Hamilton really disappointed me today, and not in the car either. He was unlucky to finish 3rd, but his attitude after the race stunk. He sulked thought the podium and the press conferences and said what he needed to say. When he said congratulations to JB and the team, he really didn’t mean it. He was unlucky today but the result wasn’t a disaster. He needs to improve his attitude or I really am going to start taking a dislike to my favourite driver. He’s supposed to be a professional world-class racing driver, not a little boy!

  14. David Smith said on 19th March 2012, 12:51

    Felipe Massa gets my vote, as he’s saving me the 30 odd pounds a month by not having sky. As a fan of his -his performance yesterday just confirmed I made the right choice!!

  15. Mads (@mads) said on 19th March 2012, 13:07

    I think it has to be JB.
    He wasn’t that good in qualifying, but not bad either. In the race though he was just a step above everyone else.
    Hamilton looked good in qualifying, but he was horribly slow in the race.
    Vettel was IMO even better then Button in the race. Pulled out great overtakes and really got some pace out of the car, but again a trip off the track and making a mistake in qualifying puts him out right there.
    Alonso was brilliant in the race and really dragged a dog of a car into a place very few could have done, but he was the only to blame for his mistake in qualifying which saw him miss out on Q3.
    Raikönnen was also very good in the race, but again, mistake in qualifying..
    Maldonardo was actually close to getting my vote, just until he lost the car on the last lap and threw away everything. Great race despite that though, but no. Just no.

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